Going out: This week’s events in Tunbridge Wells and Tonbridge

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To mark the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War, the Assembly Hall is staging Birdsong all this week. Based on the book by Sebastian Faulks, it tells the tale of a young soldier, Stephen Wraysford (played by Tom Kay), who embarks upon a passionate yet dangerous affair with young French woman Isabelle Adaire (Madeleine Knight.) It is a moving and poignant stage production that has now been seen by over 200,000 people.

Every Wednesday from 7pm until 9pm, the Angel Indoor Bowls Centre in Tonbridge welcomes beginners to their ‘Have a go at bowling‘ evening. There’s even a free drink on offer afterwards! For more information, visit www.angelibc.co.uk

BoostFit classes are now being held on Wednesday evenings at 7pm at St Gregory’s Catholic School. The classes cost £5 for a one-hour session. See www.boostfit.com


Kitchen Garden Week continues at the delightful Pashley Manor in Ticehurst. Running from 10am to 5pm, it’s a great way to see what the gardeners suggest is best to grow where and when. Entrance is £10. www.pashleymanorgardens.com

Trinity Theatre screens a live performance of the much-acclaimed stage musical Everybody’s Talking About Jamie tonight from 7.20pm. Jamie New, 16, is from a Sheffield council estate and doesn’t fit in. As a result, he’s worried about what life holds ahead for him. Will he rise above the bullying and berating and really shine in the spotlight? Go along to find out. Tickets cost £19. The Odeon will also be screening the show. See www.trinitytheatre.net and www.odeon.co.uk

Jazz on The Pantiles is still in full swing on Thursday evenings. To make it a really special event, why not avail yourself of One Warwick Park Hotel’s Bubbles and Burger deal, which costs just £10 per person? See www.onewarwickpark.co.uk


Also on at Trinity Theatre is a new exhibition entitled Keratin, and its aesthetic focus is on the natural beauty of birds’ feathers. Assembled by multimedia artist Eddie Vanderwerif, it’s a stunning collection of watercolour, pencil and ink drawings that will draw in the eye of the viewer to the intricate and individual detailing found on a variety of different birds. Open daily, 10am-10pm.

Tom Kerridge’s Pub in the Park kicks off today at Dunorlan Park. Over the next three days, foodies and music fans can enjoy a feast of live demos from some of the country’s top chefs, indulge their tastebuds in the numerous artisan stalls selling produce and kick back and relax to live sets from the likes of Tom Odell, Sophie Ellis Bextor, Mel C and Razorlight. For ticket information and timings, see www. pubinthepark.com

Tonight, there will be a live performance in the great outdoors of The Railway Children at the National Trust’s beautiful Scotney Castle. You can enjoy seeing this charming adaptation by Heartbreak Productions from as little as £13, or spoil yourself by opting for the exclusive VIP guest option which includes dinner. For details, see www.nationaltrust.org

The SIBA South East Beer Festival returns to Tonbridge today and tomorrow, with a magnificent haul of 186 different beers to be sampled. Hosted by Tonbridge Juddians’ Rugby Club, the event takes place on the club’s pitches in The Slade. This is a relaxed and family-friendly event with plenty of different drinks to sample, good food and live music to enjoy. Entry is free and all beers cost £3.40 per pint. Full details can be found at www.tj-beerfest.com


King Charles the Martyr is holding its Summer Fete today from 12noon to 3pm in the church hall. New this year is the inaugural KCM Village Show, an event to celebrate a range of talents and a chance to have a bit of fun, including awards for the best jar of jam or marmalade, inventive flower arrangements and photography. The church will be open for everyone to admire the entries. Stalls will offer cakes, tombolas, plants, games, crafts and refreshments. Profits will be shared between the church and projects in Ghana, Estonia and Malawi.
Artspring Gallery will be celebrating its second birthday in Tonbridge High Street. Join the Tonbridge Art Collective for a glass of Prosecco, a piece of magnificent birthday cake, live music, an artwork for children and a competition to win a £50 voucher to spend in the gallery.
Taking part in the area’s weekly parkruns is a great way to either start a running routine or keep it topped up. Dunorlan Park, Bedgebury and the Castle Street Park in Tonbridge are just a few of the places that host them every Saturday morning at 9am. For further details, visit www.parkrun.org.uk
The next instalment in the heist movie series, Ocean’s 8, is being screened all weekend at The Hop Farm’s Moonlight Drive-In Cinema. The all-female film, which stars Sandra Bullock, Helena Bonham Carter and Cate Blanchett, focuses on a group of criminal women aiming to rob a multi-million dollar diamond from New York’s infamous Met Ball. Will they pull it off under the gaze of its organiser, legendary US Vogue editor Anna Wintour (played by herself)? Tickets cost 25 per vehicle if you want to find out Book at www.moonlightcinema.com
If you fancy a bit of a boogie, then venture into the Enchanted Woods at Groombridge Place for a party like no other in a spectacular forest setting. Dress up as a fairy, elf or magical woodland creature for Big Fish Little Fish’s Midsummer Dream Family Rave, with crowd-pleasing BFLF resident DJ Will Nicol (Northern Soul Rave Patrol). See www.groombridgeplace.com
Go Ape at Bedgebury is perfect for thrill seekers. Children must be aged at least ten years old and be a minimum of 1.4m tall in order to participate in this tree-top adventure. Visit www.goape.co.uk
Over at Hever Castle there’s the 8th Festival of Endurance Run taking place. Organised by Castle Triathlon Series, it combines the Bastion full-iron distance triathlon, the Gauntlet half-iron distance triathlon, and a variety of other swimming and running events. See www.hevercastle.co.uk

An Audience with the History Guy at the Assembly Hall will feature well-known historian, broadcaster and BBC TV presenter Dan Snow recounting anecdotes of memorable experiences from his successful career. See more on page 50.
The Tunbridge Wells Museum & Art Gallery’s latest exhibition, Staffages: 2018, is a new collection of photographic works illuminating the connections between museum object, site and viewer. The work is by artist Steffi Klenz and the exhibition runs until September 8.

Every Tuesday at Christ Church in Tonbridge High Street, Les Puces French speaking classes take place. Aimed at pre-schoolers and primary pupils, the lessons are an hour long and are held at 9.30am and 4pm. Fees for half a term cost £60 per child. For details, visit www.lespuces.co.uk
Trinity Theatre Club start their production of the classic play Outside Edge. Written by Richard Harris in 1979, it’s the comic tale of a cricket team trying to win a game while sorting out various marital problems. Famously adapted for a TV series which ran from 1994-1996, you can now see it in its original stage version all week. See page 51 to read our chat with the show’s director.

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