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Category Archives: Family Fun

Elderflower Fields 2022 – 27-30th May at Pippingford Park, East Sussex
Join our 10th birthday celebrations!

Elderflower Fields is having a party, and you’re all invited. Be part of a fantastic wild weekend of
music, sport, art, performance and non-stop festival fun at the idyllic countryside setting of
Pippingford Park in the Ashdown Forest.

Designed especially for families with younger children, Elderflower Fields provides plenty of
space to camp under the stars with friends for an unforgettable wild adventure. The perfect
chance to set yourself free and connect with nature in an area of outstanding natural beauty.
The award winning Elderflower Fields adventure offers some of the finest local artisan food and
drink whilst showcasing a spectacular line-up of performers from Sussex and beyond.
Partnering with a host of experts in sports, arts and nature, families are invited to try new things
together in a safe and nurturing environment.

Everyone’s invited to Elderflower Fields!
Book your wild family adventure today and join the party to start summer 2022 with a bang.
Watch the Elderflower Fields highlights video
Tickets on sale now – see website for current prices

CONTACT AND ENQUIRIES
For more information, imagery, interviews and press pass enquiries contact [email protected]
Elderflower Fields // 27th – 30th July 2022 // Pippingford Park, Nutley, East Sussex, TN22 3HW
Website / Instagram / Facebook / Twitter /

THE SO SUSSEX FAMILY
It’s hard to believe how a small gathering of just a few hundred friends has blossomed over 10 years into an award-winning family festival welcoming almost 5000 guests. Elderflower Fields was created in 2012 by a team of friends under the So Sussex umbrella. Set within stunning grounds and a magical woodland in the Ashdown Forest, Pippingford Park also hosts So Sussex’s second family festival, Into The Trees.

So Sussex offers people a range of enjoyable, educational and fun outdoor experiences to develop their understanding and appreciation of the local environment. Working in partnership with a range of
wonderfully talented, enthusiastic and professional individuals and like-minded organisations, the team deliver award-winning outdoor experiences including newly launched The Living Coast by Bike and the successful Schools Without Walls programme. Elderflower Fields and Into The Trees are the first two So Sussex festivals encouraging kids and their families to spend more time outdoors.
Since creating Elderflower Fields the ambition has been to create a wealth of great activities for children and families to take part in with organisations who love what they do and can inspire people beyond the festival. In 2021 the festival welcomed around 5000 guests to join the wild adventure, with more entertainment and activities on offer than ever before.

QUOTES
‘Elderflower Fields – Best family festival for trying something new’
‘Elderflower Fields has raised the bar for what I now want out of a family festival’
‘Absolutely magical. I am an avid festival goer and this was just fantastic. It felt like a very safe festival and truly created with children in mind, but still a very lovely experience for the grown-ups too’
‘Such a brilliant festival! So much for the kids to do. The sports and arts camps are great for the kids and give parents a break. They also loved the high rope climbing and swinging on the ropes in the trees. The complimentary Sunday picnic was delicious! I love that it’s not too crowded. So friendly’
‘Second year attending this amazing event and once again exceeded all expectations. The children had an absolute blast! In their words; ‘the best weekend ever and this year was even better!’
‘Fantastic weekend. Our first camping experience as a family and we all loved it. Wonderful
adventures in the wild! Will be back next year to make more memories’
‘What an amazing, extremely well run, family-friendly festival in the Sussex countryside. It’s like a mini, family-friendly Glastonbury – music was great and we loved the green, woodland setting. Our kids thoroughly enjoyed the woodland and nature bits as well as the science tent and rock climbing’

 Free Interactive Winter Wonderland Awaits Families at Brighton Marina this Christmas

This Christmas, Brighton Marina are welcoming families and children to their free Christmas wintery wonderland with a Father Christmas grotto and elf workshop at Spa Tara under the Boardwalk next to Marina Studios.

Over four days, between Saturday 18th to Tuesday 21st Dec ,12pm-5pm, Spa Tara will be transformed into a Christmas festive-themed installation where visitors will be able to participate in an interactive magical journey which will take them through an indoor walking trail with snow, clouds, lights and sparkles where they will get creative in the elves’ workshop and visit Father Christmas in his grotto to receive their present.

On arriving at the wintry wonderland, participants will walk through Ribbon Alley where the ceiling and walls are decorated with ribbons and presents and the odd cheeky elf in hiding. Then onto the elves’ toy workshop and light laboratory where children will be taught how to make star wands before moving into the next room where they will have their wands/stars illuminated. There will be elves in each workshop to help guide participants through the process.

Sophie Chandler, Marketing Manager for Brighton Marina said, “. We are delighted to be working with Artpod again who created our successful ‘Alternative 12 days of Xmas’ and ‘Fright on Marina’ events which sold out last year. We love the idea that the illuminated star/wands the children make can be put in their windows at home so that Father Christmas can find them on Christmas Eve!”

Sharon Mee from Artpod, said, “We are aiming to make this event really special for families and we are excited to be able to use all four elements of our installations together for the first time; – ribbon alley, the snow cloud installation, bauble hall and an elves workshop all in one place. The combination of these four creations will really create a wonderful, mystical environment that families will love.”

This festive trail includes different performances each day including singers and dance troupes to entertain the whole family, the chance to test out their making, playing and selfie skills and earn elf points on route to meeting Father Christmas to receive their gift.

Online booking is essential as there will not be any drop in options on the day. Click here to book.

Winter Fair returns to the South of England Showground

The South of England Agricultural Society’s annual Winter Fair is set to return to the South of England Showground in Ardingly, West Sussex, on Saturday 20th and Sunday 21st November 2021.

Open from 9am – 5pm on the 20th and 9am – 4pm on the 21st November, the two-day show is a great way to kick off your Christmas shopping with lots of wonderful gifts and food on sale from local and independent traders, alongside festive fun for all the family.

Friends and families can experience fun Winter activities including Santa’s grotto and giant snow globe, plus there will be live music and a funfair. Workshops make a welcome return to the Winter Fair for 2021 with drop in wreath making, kids festive crafts and the always popular chocolate decoration sessions.

There will be an array of shopping opportunities with Christmas decorations, wooden toys, locally produced artwork, jewellery, country clothing, hand crafted soaps, grooming gift sets, and stunning home accessories. Even four-legged family members will be catered for with a fantastic selection of pet related gifts and goodies.

Food and drink connoisseurs can taste their way around the food halls and stands, and purchase the likes of Christmas puddings, artisan spirits and liqueurs, chocolates, cheeses, homemade jams and chutneys.

Corrie Ince, Show Director at The South of England Agricultural Society, commented:

“The Winter Fair brings together an array of local and artisan producers to offer our visitors an exceptional festive shopping experience. Showcasing some amazing independent businesses means we can offer unique gifts that you wouldn’t find on the high street.

“Visitors can be assured that as a ‘Good to Go’ venue by Visit England, Covid safety remains of utmost importance with numbers being limited for the best interest and protection of everyone, and so we do recommend buying online early to avoid disappointment.

“When you buy a ticket for the Winter Fair, you will also be helping towards our work in highlighting the countryside to the public and supporting people across the South with an interest or involvement in agriculture, horticulture and other related land-based industries. The South of England Agricultural Society is a charity and profits from this show help inspire schoolchildren to learn about the land and where their food comes from, offer travel bursaries for people working in the farming sector and provide grants to students and colleges in the land-based sector.”

Tickets to the Winter Fair 2021 are limited and it is advised to book in advance at www.seas.org.uk to avoid disappointment. Tickets cost £6.75 for adults and £5.85 for senior citizens/students (inclusive of 10% online discount until midnight Friday 12th November). Under 16s go free with a suggested donation of £1.

For more information about the South of England Agricultural Society events, please visit www.seas.org.uk or telephone 01444 892700.  You can also follow the charity @SouthEngShows on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter

HALLOWEEN-THEMED THEATRICAL ADVENTURE FOR CHILDREN AGED 5+ AND THEIR FAMILIES.

Dare to enter Dr Howl’s Spook and Scare Emporium, full of fanciful creatures and all sorts of surprises. The Doctor invites you to test their thesis of fright with a series of devious, delightful and down-right thrilling games.

DR HOWL’S SPOOK AND SCARE EMPORIUM, is a unique theatrical adventure for families in the heart of Brighton this Halloween. Commissioned exclusively for WRAP, a new co-working space and play cafe near Brighton Station, Dr Howl’s puts children at the heart of a thrilling and entertaining immersive adventure, with lots for the parents too!

Audiences enter through a secret passageway and must find their own way through the winding corridors and down the staircase to seek out Dr Howl in their laboratory. Solve clues, get messy and have fun with friends throughout this bold and inventive theatre experience.

Can you defeat the Doctor and claim the final prize?
Bring your friends, parents, grandparents and more to explore this cave of wonders, this cornucopia for the senses to discover hidden secrets, unravel mysteries and generally have a brilliant time.
WRAP Co-Founder Ed Patey sought out a connection with Spun Glass Theatre to provide high quality immersive and interactive theatre at WRAP, as soon as they were in their new building. “Immersive theatre is my favourite kind. Ever since I stumbled across a ‘Punch Drunk’ production at the Big Chill years ago, I have sought it out. It gets my imagination going as if I were a child again – and since WRAP was conceived, I have been keen arrange immersive shows for children. I really can’t wait to see kids enjoying this kind of experience as much as I do!”

Spun Glass Theatre’s Artistic Director, Jessica Cheetham, who also leads Bigfoot Arts Education South is passionate about accessible, imaginative and educational theatre for children and feels that Dr Howl’s Spook and Scare Emporium is perfect extra-curricular fun for the family that entertains, brings them together and creates memorable experiences, “I am delighted to have been offered the opportunity by WRAP to create a new theatre adventure for families right in the heart of Brighton. Spun Glass Theatre is passionate about creating quality work for children and young people which is accessible and will be remembered for years to come. We bring over a decade of experience in creating immersive theatre, blended with quick thinking comedy performances and the most detailed and interactive set we have ever been able to create. I can’t wait to see families enjoying this experience.”

If you are looking for options for some much-needed fun for the family this October half term then look no further than Dr Howl’s Spook and Scare Emporium. Tickets are £12 per person or £40 for a family ticket which includes a free drink token for the WRAP cafe.
Discover your own frightful powers in this truly interactive family experience.

Go to wrap.space/halloween-dr-howl and buy your ticket to adventure now.

Celebrate Christmas at Brighton Dome with Circus, Carols & Classic Ballet

There really is something for everyone at Brighton Dome this December with a full festive season of live events. From South American circus to enchanting ballet, classic carols to new arrangements of favourite songs and a rebellion against Christmas convention in an online musical film.

From 17 to 27 December, Circolombia’s circus-concert Acéléré will transport audiences to the bustling streets of Bogotá for an on-stage party that everyone is invited to. Featuring extraordinary acrobatic feats of breath-taking ability fused with live singing and dance, the performance is ideal for families, a friends’ night-out or an alternative Christmas staff celebration. Acéléré is about taking risks and having the courage to move forward, with the thrill of Colombia’s capital city at its heart.

Brighton Dome’s free Festive Family Open Day is back in the Foyer on Saturday 11 December. Visitors can make decorations and take part in creative activities, whilst listening to carols around the tree for quality time with family and friends away from the frenzy of the high street.

Returning to Brighton with their sell-out Christmas show, Ballet Theatre UK’s The Snow Queen is an enchanting re-telling of Hans Christian Andersen’s festive fairy-tale – the story that inspired Disney’s Frozen. A perfect outing for the whole family, this talented young company of international dancers will perform the magic of ballet to a glorious score.

To celebrate the end of the year in style, Brighton Philharmonic Orchestra’s New Year’s Eve Viennese Gala promises an afternoon of classical music featuring favourites from the Strauss family and the wonderful world of Viennese operetta.

Christmas wouldn’t be the same without a rousing sing along and this year will be a special return for local choirs to the stage. Brighton Gay Men’s Chorus bring an evening of fun and frivolity featuring favourite festive tunes and sparkling new arrangements. The Choir with No Name join their London and Brighton choirs for a night of Christmas classics, with donations and profits from the event supporting the charity’s work with the homeless, in partnership with Brighton Housing Trust. And Brighton Festival Chorus host their joyful celebration of classical Christmas music, accompanied by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and Brighton Festival Youth Choir.

Premiering online on Thursday 16 December, An_Other Christmas: Recorded Delivery is a rebellion against tradition for those less enamoured with the festive season. This free alternative Christmas film is a celebration of otherness, the others and the other in everyone, featuring music from artists Douglas Dare, Camille O’Sullivan, Eska and Duke Garwood.

More information & Tickets for all Christmas events will be available from Brighton Dome’s website and ticket office.

Creative Learning is back:
workshops, tours, and events to get your creative juices flowing!

Creative Learning at Theatre Royal Brighton runs an exciting programme of  workshops, performances, talks, tours and events alongside the fabulous shows on Theatre Royal Brighton’s stage.

Whether you attend our workshops and events as part of a school group visit, as a family, as a young person or as an adult our Creative Learning programmes have been created to inspire your imagination and bring out your passions for theatre and the arts.

Our new Saturdays at the Royal programme includes Skip’s Family Workshops for 5 – 10 years olds and their grown-ups, Stories with Skip for 2 – 4 year olds and their grown-ups, and Skip’s Saturday Club for 7 – 11 year olds. These sessions are themed and include a look around the Theatre, arts and crafts, playing, stories and drama; and if you’re wondering who Skip is – he’s a mischievous theatre mouse and the mascot for our Skip’s Club events, look out for him when you visit the Theatre!

For schools we have a very special author’s event M. G. Leonard and Sam Sedgman, award winning authors of the bestselling Adventures on Trains series, will be in conversation on stage on Wednesday 20th October to celebrate the publication of the fourth book in the series, Danger at Dead Man’s Pass. There will also be a special family performance at 4.30pm.

For Teachers we have the first of our quarterly Teacher’s Network events on stage on 6 October.

For adults we have our weekly Age is a Stage workshops that take place on Friday mornings. These joyfully silly physical and comedy theatre sessions are for anyone 50yrs+ who wants to break away from the everyday and have some fun on our stage. And keep a look out for our Sharing the Limelight project, a series of activities and events exploring the life and times of Theatre Royal Brighton in the 1950s and 60s seen through the eyes of audiences and staff.

We are delighted to be presenting a beautiful, tiny show for small audiences of little people and their families this Christmas. Du Iz Tak from the Tiny Pickles company will be performed in foyers and stairwells around the Theatre. This miniature world of little puppets is a charming, funny and imaginative adaptation of Carson Ellis’s picture book about the cycle of life told through the language of insects!

Learn, create, perform and participate at Theatre Royal Brighton with Creative Learning!

For more information contact [email protected]
Tel: 01273 764415
Book for all events www.atgtickets.com/brighton

 

Halloween-themed fun run for Sussex families affected by cancer

Drusillas Park near Alfriston are calling all monsters and mummies, ghosts and ghouls, witches and werewolves to join their wicked new virtual race for 2021 – The Monster Dash – to help raise vital awareness and funds for incredible local charity, Wolo.

Wolo Foundation, founded in 2020 by husband and wife team Justin and Fler Wright, offers practical help and support to families affected by cancer living in Sussex. The services are provided by local businesses, helping the community come together for families in need. And anyone can help Wolo continue providing this amazing support by taking part in The Monster Dash virtually this half term.

Can you bolt like the boogeyman, zoom like a zombie, or skedaddle like a skeleton? It’s up to you how you complete the Monster Dash – walk, run, creep or crawl, so long as you bring your fiercest fancy dress!

Deputy Managing Director, Cassie Poland, spoke about the event; “Wolo were such an easy choice for our charity of the year; they are local, they are passionate, they have an incredible story to tell, and they are making such a difference to the lives of those going through the hardest of times.”

“As Wolo work with families with children under 16, we wanted to make sure our virtual race was accessible to all,” continued Cassie “so no one should feel they have to accomplish a gruelling athletic feat to take part! Choose a distance and take it at your own pace, it’s about fun and coming together as a community in a moment of recognition and support for those families affected by cancer – and raising as much as we can for them all.”

Cassie continues; “Our visitors love getting into the spirit of Halloween and each year come up with some fangtastic costumes, so this is a fun excuse to wear them more than once over half term whilst fundraising – we can’t wait to see photos of zombies crawling along the seafront, or witches in the woods!”

To take part in Monster Dash, all participants need to do is complete a 2.5k, 5k or 10k distance, whilst dressed in a creepy costume, during Drusillas’ Shriek Week 23rd-31st October.

The event is virtual so participants don’t need to visit the Park, and don’t have to complete their distance all in one go; you could spread it out over the week, as long as you complete it by midnight on Halloween. Drusillas suggest a minimum donation of £5 per participant which can be donated via the event’s JustGiving page.

Wolo – which stands for We Only Live Once – was started after founder Fler received a shock cancer diagnosis in 2018. Fler speaks about her experience on the charity’s website “I was diagnosed with breast cancer out of the blue at age 38, and with 3 young children to care and provide for, life was hard. We found out the hard way that there wasn’t much help out there for families like ours.”

“We want to be able to help families going through similar experiences. Wolo stands for ‘we only live once’ and is the perfect way to describe our ethos – to make the most of each day… life is a blessing and we need to enjoy it doing the things we love, with the ones we love.”

To sign up for The Monster Dash, head to Drusillas’ website, choose your distance and start planning your outfits! @Drusillas_The Monster Dash

If your family, or a family you know, has been affected by cancer and you would like to find out about the support Wolo can offer, please visit their website wolofoundation.org.

Located just off the A27 in Alfriston, Drusillas Park is open daily from 10am. For more information please telephone 01323 874100 or visit www.drusillas.co.uk

BRIGHTON’S MAGICAL GREEN-POWERED CHRISTMAS ICE RINK IS BACK – AND IT’S BIGGER THAN EVER

The sun may still be out but a winter season of enchantment beckons at the Royal Pavilion Ice Rink in Brighton. ‘The UK’s most picturesque ice rink’ opens this year from October 30 2021 to 09 January 2022, and tickets can be pre-booked online from 2nd September 2021 at www.royalpavilionicerink.co.uk.

The Brighton outdoor rink is bigger than ever to ensure customers have plenty of room on the ice, and there’s a break of half an hour between sessions to enable socially distanced queuing and extended ‘clean downs’ between sessions.

Remarkably, the rink is still the UK’s only Christmas ice rink powered exclusively by green energy.

“It is vital that events like ours – which are all about having fun – ensure that this does not come at a cost to the environment” said Shella Parkin. MD of Laine Ltd, who puts on the rink every year. “In this year of all years, when the UK will be hosting COP26 in November, we hope other events will follow suit and undertake to switch to green energy for their power needs”.

“With this in mind, that we are delighted to announce Eventim, as our sponsor for this year, who, as Europe’s largest ticketing agency are fully committed to building a greener future for events.”

Martin Fitzgerald, MD of Eventim UK, said “We’re delighted to be working with the Royal Pavilion Ice Rink and are focused on delivering a positive ticketing experience for their customers.”

The Royal Pavilion Ice Rink is located within Brighton’s bustling North Laine district, perfect for Christmas shopping, and beautifully lit at night for a truly magical Christmas skate. The huge main rink offers plenty of space for more confident skaters and the separate beginners’ rink with penguin skate aids, provides a safe area for younger skaters to build their confidence.

For those looking to just sit back and soak up the festive atmosphere, there’s no charge for spectating from the rink-side Bar & Kitchen or outdoor spectator areas.  Conveniently situated just 50 minutes from Victoria by train, all of Brighton’s gorgeous independent shops are on its doorstep so visitors can get a little Christmas shopping in too.

Tickets cost £15 for full price tickets (aged 12 and over), £10 for juniors (under 12) and the 45 minute skate times run from 10am to 10pm daily. The box office is open from 9.30am and visitors are strongly advised to book tickets in advance to be sure of their skating slot.

Find out more at www.royalpavilionicerink.co.uk

📷 Andrew Hasson

THEATRE ROYAL BRIGHTON’S NEW SEASON OUT NOW

Theatre Royal Brighton have a fantastic season packed with top quality entertainment and a fabulous choice of shows from the West End, which promise to be the perfect opportunity for escapism and fun this autumn.

Fans of musical theatre will be spoilt for choice this season as Theatre Royal Brighton welcome back Dirty Dancing, Hairspray and Rocky Horror Show, plus Heathers The Musical, the black comedy rock musical based on the 1988 film will visit Brighton for the first time.

West End smash hit Everybody’s Talking About Jamie will also visit Brighton this Christmas.  The show stars Layton Williams and RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 6 winner Bianca Del Rio/Roy Haylock as Loco Chanelle/Hugo. This funny, fabulous and feel good show, is a musical sensation for all the family.

For anybody looking to be moved to the edge of their seats there will be a host of shows that will fright and delight in equal measure; including The Classic Thriller Theatre Company’s The Cat and the Canary, critically acclaimed The Woman in Black and Peter James’ Looking Good Dead.

Families can enjoy the return of the hugely popular Gangsta Granny and The Play That Goes Wrong, as well as a new instalment from Mischief Theatre, Groan Ups; a brand new comedy about growing up for an audience of all ages.

Click HERE to browse the full What’s On From Aug 21 Guide online
Book tickets >>@Theatre Royal Brighton

‘Journey Into The Trees’ this summer | 10-12th September 2021 | Pippingford Park, Sussex

Missing from our lives more than anything is time spent outdoors in nature. Into The Trees takes families on a fascinating journey through one of the South East’s most unique landscapes. A rare chance to relax and actively explore our natural surroundings.

A host of nature, arts and sports activities from the team behind the award-winning Elderflower Fields offer the perfect way to spend time together. The focus at Into The Trees is on relaxation and new experiences with your family in harmony with nature.

Pippingford Park is an enchanting protected ancient woodland in the heart of the Ashdown Forest and Into The Trees brings you together with experts and activities from the outdoors world to inspire guests of all ages. A chance to explore a range of woodland based arts, sport and environmental activities from raft building to making mud pies, tree climbing to fort building, pewter casting to lantern making, there is something for everyone. Weekend guests camp out under dark starry skies and can enjoy relaxed fireside performances and the Into The Trees Saturday night ceilidh.

The So Sussex formula of adventure, discovery and inspiration continues to encourage even more generations to spend time outdoors and discover the wonder of nature.

Weekend camping and glamping tickets plus day tickets on sale now.