Five things to do this weekend in the Cotswolds (September 13-14)

Blenheim International Horse Trials

Blenheim International Horse Trials - Credit: Archant

Wondering what to do this weekend in and around the Cotswolds? Here are five suggestions from us...

Damien Hirst's 'Fallen Angel', exhibited at the Crucible2 / Photography: Steve Russell Studio, court

Damien Hirst's 'Fallen Angel', exhibited at the Crucible2 / Photography: Steve Russell Studio, courtesy of Gallery Pangolin - Credit: Archant

Crucible2, Gloucester Cathedral

September 1 - October 30

Following on from the first Crucible in 2010, Crucible2 once again brings an eclectic range of sculpture into the hallowed grounds of Gloucester Cathedral for a free exhibition. Because of the location, you might expect the artwork to be deferential and reserved; but, as visitors will discover, many of the artists exhibiting have created challenging and inventive pieces, confronting traditional religious themes, often with a contemporary twist.

Damien Hirst, Lynn Chadwick, Antony Gormley, Kenneth Armitage, Jon Buck and over 50 other artists will display 100 pieces of work, the majority of which are available to buy (for those with particularly deep pockets). Of particular note is Hirst’s ‘Fallen Angel’, a golden-coated, bronze depiction of Mary Magdalene, with outstretched wings, self-harm scars and a heroin ‘cook kit’ beside her, contemporising Antonio Canova’s The Repentant Magdalene (c.1794-96).

The Very Reverend Stephen Lake, Dean of Gloucester said: “Four years ago the Crucible exhibition changed the way people viewed the cathedral as they engaged with it in a new way. The cathedral is both ‘sacred space and common ground’ so exciting things can take place here which have a real impact on people’s experiences. This September and October, Gloucester Cathedral will host a new exhibition, Crucible2, and all are welcome to see Gloucestershire’s greatest work of art, host sculpture of national importance.”

Crucible2 is jointly organised by Gloucester Cathedral and Gallery Pangolin. For more information, visit:

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The Blenheim Horse Trials, Blenheim Palace, Woodstock

September 11-14

The Blenheim Palace International Horse Trials are firmly established in the eventing calendar, attracting the world’s best riders and thousands of spectators each year, and return for the 24th time this week to Blenheim Palace.

There are two international classes held at Blenheim over the four days of the event – a CCI3 and a CIC3 class. The latter is for 8 and 9 year old horses and has been specifically developed for younger horses to complete the Dressage test followed by Show Jumping then Cross Country. The format for the CCI3 class, for older and more experienced horses, starts with Dressage, followed by a longer and more technically demanding Cross Country phase, which provides a more exacting test and finishes with the Show Jumping.

In addition to world class eventing action there is a plethora of other activities for the whole family, including browsing the broad selection of trade stands, food hall or the well-stocked craft pavilion, or watching a series of demonstrations and displays in the Blenheim Arena which are entirely free of charge. There is also the Brightwells Elite Event Horse Auction, a visit by HRH The Princess Royal and opportunities for amateur and grass roots riders to take part in various arena eventing classes and a Fun Ride.

For further details, visit:

Made in the Cotswolds, Chipping Campden

September 13-14

‘Made in the Cotswolds’ is a collaboration between Cotswold House Hotel and Spa, Creative Campden, The Gallery At The Guild, BITE 2014 and Campden Business Forum, bringing together over 30 talented Cotswold artists, craftspeople and creatives in a weekend of exhibitions, open studios and demonstrations showcasing Cotswold creative talent and the best of Cotswold food and drink.

The creative trail runs from Court Barn Museum in Church Street to The Gallery At The Guild, based in The Old Silk Mill in Sheep Street, with the centrepieces being the BITE 2014 food festival in Campden’s iconic market hall and the displays and demonstrations in the Montrose Suite and gardens at The Cotswold House Hotel in The Square.

Cotswold House Hotel & Spa is throwing open its gardens and Montrose Suite to all of these creatives who will be exhibiting their work and demonstrating their techniques – silver smithing, studio glass, furniture design, all manner of ceramics, book publishing, textiles, painting, photography, textiles and sculpture.

Admission is free and ‘Made in the Cotswolds’ will be open to the public from 10am to 5pm on Saturday 13 and Sunday 14 September. In addition to the exhibitions and events at The Cotswold House Hotel, visitors can enjoy a number of open studios and other venues across Chipping Campden.

For more information, visit:

Stroud Theatre Festival, Stroud

September 12-14

Stroud is to host its second theatre festival this week, with 25 companies performing over three days at 6 different venues in the town, featuring everything from stand-up and lively comedies to musicals, cabaret and children’s shows.

Performances include Jack Dean’s ‘Threnody for the Sky Children’, a poetry piece featuring myths and zombies, ‘Help!’ from Viki Browne, about falling apart and pulling yourself together, and Liverpool-based company Gerundagula’s ‘Meet the Real Maggie Thatcher’, which has received positive reviews on the Fringe Festival circuit.

There will be comedy from Instant Wit, Levick and Wood, Hexagon Theatre and Spitz & Co, two sets of humorous story readings from Philip Douch and Julie Green and a double act described as ‘the Two Ronnies with boobs – O’Shea & O’Gaukroger’.

Local writer and performer Swithin Fry will be presenting a performance focusing on his relationship with Death Row inmate Timothy Coleman in ‘17 years, 7 months, 10 days, 3 hours and 42 minutes’ and Cheltenham-based actor Howard Timms’ ‘In Tune With Dementia’ explores living with a family member with the illness.

The festival takes place at the Subscription Rooms, Lansdown Hall and Gallery, The British School at Star Anise, The Alehouse and The Imperial Hotel. Stroud Theatre Festival is supported by Arts Council England, Stroud Arts Festival and Stroud Town Council.

Tickets are £ 6.00, £ 4.00, or you can buy a Stroudie Special which allows 6 shows for the price of 5. These are available from the Subscription Rooms Box Office or by phoning 01453 760900.

To find out more about specific times and shows pick up a brochure or visit

Newent Onion Fayre, Newent

September 13

Newent Onion Fayre is a one day street festival of food drink and merriment which attracts almost 15,000 visitors annually. At the heart of the festival is the Onion Show, which is unique in its status in the UK.

There will be plenty of live music, entertainment, food and drink, plus 100+ stands, exhibitions, children’s events (and an eye-watering onion eating competition).

The Newent Onion Fayre has become the largest one-day festival in the whole of Gloucestershire, and can proudly hold the title of the only national festival to celebrate the onion!

For more information, visit: