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What’s On in Sussex

22 - 30 March

Tango, vineyard tours, outdoor theatre to book ahead, star gazing, gin matching and a silent disco, all in your latest What’s On in Sussex

Guided stargazing, Redoubt Fortress, Eastbourne, Sat 24 March

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The late, great Stephen Hawking encouraged us to “look up at the stars, not down at your feet,” and here’s your chance to do so with a bit of expert guidance from Eastbourne Astronomical Society. Members will be giving a free family-friendly tour of the night sky pointing out the constellations, features on the Moon and some of the planets. Use their telescopes and binoculars or bring your own.

Night sky photography workshop, The Observatory Science Centre, Herstmonceux, Sun 25 March

Another space themed one – Herstmonceux has a Night Sky Photography course on Sun 25 March when multi-award winning  photographer John Fox will show you how to get some out of this world shots with a DSLR and a tripod. It’s £50 per person including a light lunch and drinks.

Tango Moderno, The Hawth, Crawley, Tues 27 March – Sat 31 March

Pic by Manuel Harlan

It takes two to tango and those two are Strictly‘s Vincent Simone and Flavia Cacace, who’ll be getting steamy on the Hawth stage for the best part of a week, fusing ballroom, Latin and Argentine tango. Tickets are from £34 and there are matinees on the Wed and Sat.

Great British Spring Clean, East Head, West Wittering, Fri 30 March

If you’ve time to spare on Good Friday lunchtime don your wellies, work off the hot crossed buns, and do your bit for the plastic crackdown by joining the Great British Spring Clean at East Head spit at West Wittering 12.30 – 14.30. Dogs on leads are welcome.

Teechers, White Rock Theatre, Hastings / Alexandra Theatre, Bognor Regis, Wed 28 March/ Thurs 29 March 

Blackeyed Theatre’s production of John Godber’s classic comedy about a struggling school is dropping into Hastings and Bognor. The story is told through the eyes of three Year 11 students and features an up-to-date soundtrack. Tickets are 19.50 at Hastings where there are two performances on 28 March, and £16.50 at Bognor on 29 March and it’s suitable for ages 11+.

Works by Wolf, Monk’s House Garden, Rodmell, near Lewes, selected dates Wed 28 March – 18 April

©National Trust Images/Andreas von Einsiedel

Hear some of Virginia Wolf’s most famous works in the very garden where they were written, read aloud by Larry Yates. The 17th century house reopens for the season on 28 March and the readings will take place twice in the afternoons of 28 and 31 March and 4, 7, 11 and 14 of April. The event is free but normal admission charges apply (adults £6).

Of Mice & Men, Assembly Hall Theatre, Tunbridge Wells Mon 26 – Sat 31 March

I saw a great Of Mice & Men in Brighton last year and here’s another strong looking touring production bringing John Steinbeck’s powerful depression-era novella to the stage. Tickets are from £15. Take a hanky.

Free and discounted tours, Bolney Wine Estate, near Haywards Heath, until 29 March  

There are two chances to get a discounted tour of the vineyards at Bolney this month. First, in support of English Tourism Week  Bolney will be running daily drop-on tours from 1.00pm for free between 17 and 25 March. Do book ahead though because places are limited. Secondly, on full Buy and Book tours taken until 29 March you can get a 20% discount when you quote BOOK2018.

Vincent Van Gogh ‘A New Way of Seeing’ Exhibition on Screen, Brighton and Horsham, Mon 26 & Tues 27 March

There’s another chance to catch the Vincent Van Gogh ‘A New Way of Seeing’ showcase as part of the Exhibition on Screen series with encore screenings coming up at Dukes at Komedia, Brighton (26 March and 2 April) and The Capitol, Horsham, 27 March.

Pike & Pine and The Gin Tub tasting menu, Brighton, Wed 28 March

Photo: John Blackwell

Kemptown’s fine dining restaurant Pike and Pine is teaming up with Hove bar The Gin Tub for a special tasting menu evening matching gins to dishes. It’s eight courses with eight different gins for £85.

Alice’s Adventures in Farlington, Farlington School, Horsham, Sat 24 March

Farlington School is putting on an afternoon of Alice-inspired crafts, treasure hunts and games for 4 to 7-year-olds as part of its open day on 24 March. The event is free, but registration is essential by emailing

The Italian Job, The Picture House Uckfield, Thurs 29 March 

“You’re only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!” Sixties classic The Italian Job is racing into the Picture House in Uckfield for one night only with a screening  on 29 March. I’ve a Mini Cooper myself but I’ve never driven it like they do in the film I assure you! Tickets £9.50, or £15 with a Prosecco.

Silent Disco, Komedia, Brighton, Fri 30 March

Ever done a silent disco? Me neither, but here’s your chance to try. The Komedia in Brighton has one on 30 March and 29 June, with different channels for indie, rock and pop. It’s £8, or £6 for early-bird bookings.

Meet the Artists, Pier Road Coffee and Art, Littlehampton, Fri 23 March 

14 of the current artists with work on display at this new gallery-cum-coffeeshop will be mingling for a chat over a glass of wine on Fri night 6-7 pm. Drop in, browse their work and find out their techniques.

Boatshow gig and Funny Fursday comedy, Hotel Pelirocco, Brighton, Wed 28 March and Thurs 29 March 

Among events up at Brighton’s Rock ‘n’ Roll hotel Pelirocco is the latest of its regular Boatshow nights with live alt-rock, folk and electronic music – £3 on the door and £6 for food by Finn. The day after is Funny Fursday with six comedy acts hosted by Charmaine Davies, with free entry!

Victorian Giants: The Birth of Art Photography, National Portrait Gallery, London, 1 Mar until 20 May

A major new exhibition brings together, for the first time, the works of four of the most celebrated figures in art photography; Lewis Carroll, Julia Margaret Cameron, Oscar Rejlander and Clementina Hawarden. These four artists from the Victorian era and have influenced photographers ever since. The show features striking portraits of sitters such as Charles Darwin, Alice Liddell, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Thomas Carlyle, George Frederick Watts, Ellen Terry and Alfred, Lord Tennyson.


Mother’s Ruin, Pavilion Theatre, Worthing, Thurs 12 April 

This actually sold out but a few more tickets have just been released to slurp them up quick. It’s billed as a comic cabaret through the history of gin with songs by Amy Winehouse, Nina Simone and The Pretenders. Need more persuading? It was shortlisted for Best Cabaret at Fringe World Festival and there’s a free G&T with each £17.50 ticket.

Easter Festival, Plumpton Racecourse, Easter Sun 1 and Mon 2 April 

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Making Easter weekend plans beyond chocolate scoffing? Check out the Plumpton Racecourse Easter Festival. There’ll be lots to keep you and yours amused besides racing, including a fun fair, face painting, live music, a strolling magician and donkey rides. Best of all, under-18s get in free and advance adult tickets start from a tenner.

Zine Making with Cult Milk, Ditchling Museum of Art & Craft, Wed 11 April

Leave kids with Cult Milk to create a fun personalised ‘zine full of their own drawings and ideas based around the museum’s exhibitions and using coloured paper, pens, printouts, stickers and card. It’s aimed at ages 7+ and runs 11.00am to 3.00pm at £23.50 per child. These drop off workshops tend to sell out quickly (alas the grafitti one already has) so get on it quick.

Noggin the Nogg, Capitol Theatre, Horsham, 13 April

‘In the Lands of the North where the black rocks stand guard against the cold sea…’ Noggin the Noggin and his brilliantly monikered nemesis Nogbad the Bad had been off on their viking sagas a fair while before I even caught them as a kid. They used to be a cardboard stop animation series, now they’re set to enchant a new generation in a live show with puppets which handily coincides with the Easter hols. Tickets are £14.

Royal wedding Windsor cruise moorings, Fri 18 May – Sat 19 May

When it comes to royal weddings there’s generally a love it or hate it reaction. If you’re in the former camp, here’s a unique opportunity to get within flag waving distance of the nuptials. Self-drive cruise operator Le Boat has reserved exclusive mooring for seven boats at MDL Marina in Windsor from Fri 18 May to Sat 19 May (the day of the Harry – Meghan wedding). The marina is three miles (a 13-minute taxi ride) from Windsor Castle. You can bag a decorated mooring as part of a longer cruise, or take a two-night cruise to Windsor on certain vessels, but be quick!

Brighton Open Air Theatre, now booking for summer, 3 May – 30 Sept 

The lovely BOAT has just unveiled its summer season with heaps of adult and family shows and, as ever, the chance to picnic while you watch. Among the line-up David Walliam’s The Midnight Gang will be dramatised in May, there’s stand up from Simon Evans in June, Shakespere’s Globe will be visiting in July and there’s a Mods & Rockers-themed Romeo and Juliet in August.


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