The Urban Guide to the Countryside
Sussex Edition

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Wouldn't you though?

Got Olympic fever? Get some Modernist sporting art on your wall with these striking prints from Kemptown's Bookroom Art Press, available online.

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Family friendly festival – Together the People, 3 & 4 Sept

29 Aug 2016

A couple of years back Brian Wilson was responsible for one of the worst hangovers of my life. He was the surprise act at the opening party for a Fifties and Sixties themed hotel where I was staying in Orlando and I got so caught up in the feel-good Beach Boys music and his self-deprecating humour that I missed the entire buffet (most unlike me) and consequently drank far too much on an empty stomach.

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New kid-friendly DIY Pizza concept

26 Aug 2016

I rarely recommend chains on Muddy, I believe you nearly always get better quality from a good independent. I thought it worth drawing your attention to this new pizza chain however because a) it’s a bit different, with a concept I think kids will love and b) it’s at Brighton Marina where, if you’re visiting for the day, you’ll find pretty much nothing but chains.

MOD Pizza is an American buisness (the same guys behind Seattle Coffee Company) and the new Brighton Marina branch, opened just a couple of weeks ago, is only its second outlet in the UK.

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The Muddy Guide, What’s On 26 Aug – 2 Sept

25 Aug 2016

Festival fun in Arundel and Shoreham, a vintage brocante at Wisborough Green, a chance to find a real-life Dory, try the trapeze and – eek – meet Johnny Depp (…sort of) all on in Sussex and in the Muddy Guide. There’s more stuff still for kids too in my Bumper School Holidays Guide.

Arundel Festival, 20-29 Aug  

Bands and Northern Soul dancing in Jubilee Gardens; dragon boat racing at the Lido; Alan Bennett’s The History Boys at the Playhouse; magic in the streets and stand-up comedy in the jailhouse.

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London day out: Clangers, Bagpuss & Co (plus Olympic park)

23 Aug 2016

Once upon a time, not so long ago I went to see the Clangers, Bagpuss & Co. exhibition at the V&A Museum of Childhood in  Bethnal Green, London.

Frankly I’d surprised myself that I’d held off so long. My love of the Small Films productions created by Oliver Postgate and Peter Firmin is so great (I once wrote a dissertation on them – seriously) it’s a wonder I wasn’t camped outside with a sleeping bag and flask the night before it first opened back in spring.

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Muddy makeover: update a room with Sussex accessories

20 Aug 2016

When I moved house a few years ago our lounge started as pretty much a blank canvas. ‘Brilliant!’ I thought. How wrong I was. There’s only so long you can sit on a tired old sofa that clashes with the dark inherited walls before you have to start making some quick decisions. The trauma of applying four coats of paint to cover what there was before means we’ll not be redecorating again any time soon and the new sofa we bought under time pressure doesn’t ‘go with anything’ as I’d first thought.

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The Muddy Guide: What’s On 19 – 26 Aug

17 Aug 2016

Lewes Artwave launches, Spamalot is in town, there’s a Bowie screen tribute, circus shenanigans and plenty of family-friendly ideas from Tractor Ted to teen cooking. Don’t forget to also visit my bumper school holiday guide if you want more activities to keep kids entertained.

David Bowie is… The V&A exhibition film, Chichester Cinema, Aug 23

Missed the V&A exhibition on David Bowie a few years back and, like me, kicking your self even more now the great man’s no longer with us?

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A beach hut for a week, West Wittering

16 Aug 2016

I once had a chat with a taxi driver that totally changed my mind about something. No, he wasn’t ranting about politics; he was waxing lyrical about beach huts.

Up to that point I’d felt brightly coloured rows of huts were cute for a photo but otherwise the preserve of elderly people with tartan blankets over their laps. He, however, described a halcyon scene with his family gathered round, cooking fry-ups as the sun went down.

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Travel sick kids? Get happier journeys with my expert tips

16 Aug 2016

My childhood car journeys were punctuated by emergency stops as I gave a three second vomit warning and was hauled from the child-locked back seats to the front and out of the door in a parental game of Russian roulette. Unlike most people, as an adult I somehow never grew out of the sickness, yet managed to become an avid traveller, and of all things a travel journalist!

Yes, I’ve thrown up in some top places: the Eurostar to Paris… a helicopter over the Athens Olympic site… on a snorkel boat mid-way through swimming with whale sharks… on a boat trip to Capri (my embarrassed now-husband hosed my half digested spaghetti and clams off the deck).

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New mums’ retreat comes to Sussex (with a Muddy discount!)

10 Aug 2016

If you’re a new mum, or you know one, then listen up.

Australian wellness retreat Motherground, aimed specifically at new mums (first or subsequent times round) and their babies up to 18 months, is coming to the UK for the first time with a one off at Brooklands Barn, Arundel this October.

We’re talking on-site nanny, meals made for you, post-birth yoga and meditation and a massage of the kind that doesn’t involve having food rubbed into your hair.

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The Muddy Guide: What’s On 12 – 18 Aug

9 Aug 2016

Great value family wellness activities, a big vintage fair, Wuthering Heights performed outdoors, truffle and mosaic making workshops and Sussex safaris (yes really). All this and more in this week’s Muddy Guide plus heaps more events for kids in my growing bumper school holidays guide.

Sun & Moon Festival, Plumpton College, 14-21 Aug

This great value family wellbeing festival is on this coming week with hundreds of workshops and activities for both adults and children including aromatherapy, climbing, street dance, yoga, music, massage and artistic upcycling.

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The Urban Guide to the Countryside -
Sussex Edition