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35+ fab things to do in Northants this August

August is jam-packed with fun, so get your glad rags on and get busy with the fizzy! Here's all the best stuff to do in Northants from epic festival headliners and outdoor theatre to fab art exhibitions, fine dining pop-ups and loads more.

PICK OF THE MONTH: The Classic at Silverstone, 26-28 August

Silverstone Classic

The Classic at Silverstone, on 26-28 August, is a jam-packed family festival with a brilliant line-up of historic mototsports PLUS 3 nights of live music, festival food, and more. Mega nice guy and music legend Rick Astley headlines on Sunday night, with loads of other amazing acts on the bill, you can ride the fun fair to your heart’s content, have a go at football skills coaching sessions, play crazy golf and even do a spot of shopping.There’s also a a Foodie Fest with demos and celeb chef masterclasses, Jeremy Clarkson’s Diddly Squat Farm Shop, an artisan food market and zillions more fun things to do.

STAGE AND SCREEN

The Lost City Luna Flix Northants

Luna Flix outdoor cinema returns to the gorgeous grounds of Boughton House and Tower Field in Finedon this month, so grab your tickets while you can! Screening include classics such as Dirty Dancing, Top Gun, and Cool Runnings plus recent releases Encanto and The Lost City. Bring snacks, folding chairs and warm clothing.

You can enjoy a summer’s evening on the lawns at Rockingham Castle for an outdoor performance of Pride and Prejudice on 11 Aug. Bring along a picnic to scoff in the gorgeous surroundings and lose yourself in this classic love story.

MUSIC AND FESTIVALS

Stowaway Festival Northants

Head to Silverstone Circuit for another epic event from 5-7 August, it’s the Moto GP. The two-wheeled championship returns for high-octane, adrenalin pumping bike action at the home of British Motor Racing. Aside from the world’s best riders and the iconic Grand Prix circuit, there’s also a packed weekend of entertainment, with live performances from Basement Jaxx, Tom Greenan and Ella Eyre, plus top notch street food and late night party vibes.

Blackpit Brewery at Stowe launch the inaugural Stowaway Festival from 19-21 August, where you can step into a secret world of ancient woodland & lakes with hidden parties, relaxation, comedy, food, revelry, kids entertainment and music from the likes of Orbital, Norman Jay, Roni Size and loads more.

Lo-fo indie festival Shambala at Kelmarsh Hall (25-28 Aug) isn’t big on household name music bookings for its 12 (yep, 12!) stages but there’s more cabaret, inspiring talks, yoga, circus acts and comedy than you can shake a stick at and it’s very family friendly.

Also happening on the August Bank Hol (26-29 Aug), Greenbelt Festival at Boughton House is a celebration of diversity and culture like no other, where spiritual meets secular and nurtures everything in between, with music, performing arts, literature, comedy, spirituality, workshops and children’s entertainment.

ART AND EXHIBITIONS

Annabel Eley

Northants Open Studios kicks off its epic 2022 program at Boughton House this month, exhibiting work from Annabel Eley (above), Paula Le Baigue, Lisa McKenna and Helga Keri in the picturesque Stableyard and Coach House. Open Sat-Tues 1-5pm throughout August. Definitely one not to miss, and there are plenty more Open Studio coming up with free entry to all events, so stay tuned!

If you haven’t been to see MK Gallery’s Vivian Maier exhibition, running until 25 Sept, it’s really worth seeing: hundreds of stunning photographs secretly taken in New York and Chicago throughout the later 20th century.

jim moir northampton museum art gallery

Jim Moir (otherwise known as Vic Reeves) is exhibiting at Northampton Museum and Art Gallery with his solo show Romans, Daisies Ones and Twos, on until 14 Aug. All the work is for sale, so you can grab yourself one of Jim’s fab paintings to take home with you. Check out our review here.

star wars exhibition northampton

Also at Northampton Museum and Art Gallery until 4 Sept, the UK’s finest collection of vintage Star Wars toys and original cinema posters from 1977 – 1985. May The Toys Be With You is a celebration of the highly collectible vintage toy line as well as the iconic design work and art of the Star Wars movies. This exhibition features toys never exhibited before and is the biggest version of the exhibition ever opened to the public. Brilliant for kids and grown-ups!

Fancy getting stuck to a spot of creativity in yourself? Don your painter’s smock, Yardley Arts will be running a half day watercolour flower painting workshop on 22 August with tutor Nicky Hunter teaching stages of a painting and watercolour techniques to create your own gorgeous painting.

FOOD AND DRINK

danny tompkins summer bbq feast

Evenley Wood Garden have teamed up with Brackley Wines to lay on an afternoon of wine tasting in the garden on 6 Aug. Collect a glass, tasting notes and map at the entrance to the gorgeous gardens and make (or stagger) your way around the stations where you will have the opportunity to sample and learn about a selection of wines.

Ever popular street food pop-up Bite Street returns to Franklin’s Gardens from 5-7 August, serving up everything from loaded fries, nachos and burgers to bao buns, dumplings and spectacular doughnuts from a huge variety of vendors. Grab your tickets quick.

The fab team at Muddled Lime in Long Buckby (Muddy Award Winners for 2022, no less!) are hosting a Sushi Night collab with NOMNOW kitchen on 12 Aug, with a sushi platter paired with speciality cocktails such as Cherry Blossom Martini. Heaven! Get in touch to book your table.

How about a two course meal cooked by award winning chef Danny Tompkins (he’s cooked for Jay-Z FYI) in the gorgeous grounds of Lamport Hall, with outdoor bar and live music? Hurry up and book your tickets to feast on pork ribs, tiger prawns, lamb shoulder, spiced halloumi, harissa aubergines, BBQd pineapple and loads more to choose from on 20 Aug.

Then head to stunning outdoor venue Hawthorn Grove on 20 Aug for Supper on the Patio, where you’ can admire beautiful views across Summer Leys Nature Reserve and the Nene Valley with live music, whilst sipping Prosecco cocktails from Muddy Award winning Muddled Lime and feasting on 5 courses of authentic Asian cooking. Sounds like our kinda night.

HISTORY AND HERITAGE

Holdenby House Northants
Holdenby House

You can see the English Civil War come back to life at Rockingham Castle‘s Civil War Day on 7 Aug, as an Officer of the Garrison shares his tales of derring do. Kids and history buffs will love this one-of-a-kind event.

Sound the Bank Holiday Klaxon! The iconic Holdenby House is a fab place to spend a day of leisure, strolling like a Queen in the magnificent gardens and grounds, with a rare chance to visit inside this incredible historic Tudor pile this Bank Holiday Monday (29 Aug), where you can see a special Royal Exhibition: Elizabeth I to Elizabeth II: 10 Monarchs & Holdenby, plus watch amazing falconry displays and enjoy scrumptious homemade treats in Connie’s Tea Parlour. The gardens and falconry are also open every Saturday and selected Sundays until 25 Sept. Read all about out recent visit here.

KIDS AND FAMILY

Whisk'd bakery cafe northants

Cake guru Sophie, of Whisk’d cafe and bakery at Weedon Depot, is running an hour long children’s cupcake decorating workshop on 4 Aug. Kids will get 3 cupcakes to decorate and take home. Can’t make the date? Keep an eye on their insta for more workshops coming up.

It’s Blakesley Show on 6 Aug. Head down to a field in deepest Northants for a jam-packed day of prize heifers, fairground rides, crafts, produce, street food and epic stunt performers. Last year Mr Muddy tried his hand at axe throwing. Never again.

Chester House is holding a weekend of family fun on 6 & 7 August, with loads of fab activities including a live stage, bouncy castles and soft play, meet and greet character, mini beach, inflatable zone, water sprinklers, stalls, team game, lawn games and crafts. Be sure to book in advance if you’re planning to go, as it’s bound to be super popular.

Budding palaeontologists can channel their inner Jeff Goldblum this summer on a Jurassic style adventure to Dinosaurs in the Park at Delapré Abbey until 7 Aug. You’ll meet life-sized animatronic dinosaurs as the Dino Trail winds its way past Stegosaurus, Triceratops and Velociraptor, T-Tex and loads more as well as learning dino facts. There’s also plenty of other fun dinosaur activities, as well as food and drink. It’ll be roarsome (sorry).

Every kid, geeky or not, must surely love Horrible Histories? Well here are some of history’s most horrible figures, as the Terrible Tudors tread the boards at the Castle Theatre in Wellingborough from 5-7 Aug. From the horrible Henries to the end of evil Elizabeth, hear the legends (and the lies!) about the torturing Tudors. Find out the fate of Henry’s headless wives and his punch up with the Pope. Meet Bloody Mary and see Ed fall dead in his bed. Survive the Spanish Armada as they launch their attack! It’s history with the nasty bits left in!

chester house circus skills northants

And if you’ve ever thought about selling your kids to the circus (look, we’ve all been there in the summer hols), how about letting them learn to juggle, plate-spin or throw a diabolo really high in the air and catch it on a tiny piece of string? There’s also balancing, stilt-walking, pedal racers, bungee bouncers and and much more at Chester House’s Circus Skills Workshops on 11 August.

On 13 & 14 Aug you can also head to Delapré for Funtopia, designed for under 10s and taking over the grounds of the Abbey with a fun-filled event featuring bouncy castles, an obstacle course, inflatable slide, bungee run, giant games, Space Hopper races and more – all included in the price of your wristband! There’s also food court and live entertainment

On 20 Aug, Quantam Theatre heads to National Trust Lyveden for an outdoor performance of Beatrix Potter’s The Tale of Peter Rabbit and Benjamin Bunny. Grab the kids, a blanket and a picnic and settle in for a magical evening of family fun.

The seventh annual Summer Arts & Craft Fair returns to Scotch Lodge Farm in Earls Barton on 21 Aug, with over 40 stalls with a variety of handmade crafts, gifts, plants and loads more including Muddy fave Flowers and Strings. The farmyard café will be open too, plus there’s a bar and ice-creams.

Then, take your favourite bear to Rockingham Castle on 21 Aug for a Teddy Bears Picnic! Meet Goldilocks and the Three Bears and take part in a Teddy Bear Trail around the stunning castle grounds. Perfect for younger kiddos and their humans.

FLOWERS AND GARDENS

wappenham farm sunflowers

Pink Welly Posies flower farm in Eastcote will be opening up the patch on 7 August. for visitors to come and have a wonder round with tea, coffee and cake available along with pick your own posy sessions and flowers available to buy on the day. It’s free to join, but please book in advance.

Wappenham Farm’s brilliant sunflower patch and maize maze are back this year from 20-29 Aug for PYO sunflowers (last year I hauled home practically the whole field) and a really impressive maze with fun facts for kids to find as they explore. There’s also a pop-up cafe, straw-bale stack for intrepid climbers and farm animals to feed.

The glorious yellow sunflower field and maize maze at Overstone Grange are looking fabulous, with fun things to spot to keep those smaller legs running and you can pick sunflowers to take home at an additional cost. There are also refreshments available to buy, tables to sit at and a tent for shelter, plus a play patch with bale towers and sandpits.

THE LAST WORD

Book club northants

Fancy a spot of indoor social activity? Kettering wine and book club are super welcoming and they meet on the last Wednesday of every month. August’s read is The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid. There’s also a monthly women’s book club at the wonderful Saints Coffee on St. Giles’ in Northampton, meeting on the third Thursday of the month. This month it lands on 18 Aug and the book is The Book of Form and Emptiness by Ruth Ozeki.

FEEL GOOD FASHION

Hello dopamine dressing! Bicester Village has teamed up with Smiley® to launch a collection of beach-ready sliders, hats, t-shirts and more with all proceeds donated to BV’s DO GOOD charity partners. Visit the pop-up shop at the village (the collection is super-reasonable, with most pieces around £25), plus keep your eyes peeled for the bright yellow installations around the village – perfect Instagram fodder.

BOOK AHEAD

Cranley Hospice starlight walk

It’s well known that we love any excuse to don fancy dress, but when it involves outdoor disco-ing, cocktails AND raising funds for a brilliant local charity in one of our favourite Northants beauty spots, well, we defo can’t resist. Cransley Hospice Starlight Walk takes place in the magnificent grounds of Boughton House on 24 Sept and you can sign up right here to get involved and raise vital funds to help support those in need of end of life care. There’s a cocktail station, DJ, light show and UV zone and you’re encouraged to get dressed up to the nines – the wackier, the better! The first 100 Muddy readers to sign up and select “Muddy Stilettos” at checkout will get an exclusive ‘Starlight Gift Pack.”

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