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  • Events in May

    Sublime Symmetry
    (11 May-28 October)
    Celebrating the work of acclaimed Victorian ceramic artist William De Morgan and the mathematical concepts behind his intricate designs.
    Guildhall Art Gallery, City of London
    020 7332 3700,

    Hay Festival 2018
    (24 May-3 June)
    More than 800 events spanning award-winning fiction, non-fiction and poetry, and a vibrant programme of music, comedy and performance.
    Hay-on-Wye, Powys
    01497 822 629,

    Queen Victoria in Paris
    (Until 24 June)
    An exhibition of watercolours commissioned by the monarch as a souvenir of her momentous 10-day state visit to Paris in August 1855.
    The Bowes Museum, Barnard Castle, County Durham
    01833 690606,

    On the Air: 50 years of BBC Radio Brighton
    (Until 1 July)
    Celebrate the 50th anniversary of BBC Radio Brighton with a display of objects and stories from the early years of BBC Local Radio.
    Brighton Museum, Brighton, East Sussex
    03000 290900,

    Art of Glass
    (Until 16 September)
    This exhibition explores the work of leading glass artists in Britain today.
    National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh
    0300 123 6789,

    The Great British Seaside
    (Until 30 September)
    A major new photography exhibition exploring Britain’s relationship with the seaside, featuring Tony Ray-Jones, David Hurn and Simon Roberts and new work by Martin Parr.
    National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London, 020 8312 6565

    Attraction of the Month

    What to see: Take an immersive journey through more than a century of aviation from the beginnings of the British and Colonial Aeroplane Company in 1910 through to today’s cutting-edge technology. With fun interactives and amazing exhibits, you’ll see aeroplanes, helicopters, missiles, satellites and engines, and get to step on board Concorde Alpha Foxtrot – the last of the supersonic passenger jets to be built and the last to fly.

    What to eat: The café, which is open to all, serves a range of light meals, snacks and drinks with a special children’s menu. The Concorde Café, which is located under Concorde Alpha Foxtrot and is open to ticket holders, offers freshly brewed coffees and teas, and a selection of cakes baked on site.

    Disabled access: The Museum is fully wheelchair accessible with lifts, accessible toilets and 10 disabled parking bays near to the entrance, however Concorde has a very narrow aisle between the seats. Assistance dogs are welcome. Three wheelchairs are available for visitor use, which can be booked by emailing or calling 0117 931 5315.

    How to get there: Located just off the M5 with free onsite parking, the nearest main line railway station is Bristol Parkway. Taxis are available there, as is the number 10 bus. The number 75 and 79 can be caught from Bristol city centre and all three services serve the Gipsy Patch Lane bus stop by the Royal Mail building, a one mile walk to the Museum. For train times, visiting or call 03457 484950. For bus information, visit or call 0345 602 0121.

    Opening times and admission: Open seven days a week, except Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day, 10am-5pm. Admission is £15 (adult), £13 (senior/student), £8 (child, 4-17), £26 (family, 1 adult, 2 children), £39 (family, 2 adults, 2 children), £24.50 (grand family, 1 senior, 2 children) and £36 (grand family, 2 seniors, 2 children). Under 4s and dedicated carer admitted free.

    Aerospace Bristol, Hayes Way, Patchway, Bristol BS34 5BZ. For further information, visit or call 0117 931 5315.

    South West of England

    06 Haynes Breakfast Club
    Meet other like-minded motoring enthusiasts and chat over a coffee and a hearty breakfast in Café 750.
    Haynes International Motor Museum, Yeovil, Somerset
    01963 440804,

    16 Library Tour and Tea (2pm)
    Discover the history of the library, view a selection of books from the medieval period onwards followed by a delicious Cream Tea in our Refectory. Booking essential.
    Salisbury Cathedral, Salisbury Wiltshire
    01722 555120,

    24 Lecture: A History of Cornish Mining (6pm)
    An evening lecture by Dr Keith Russ. Booking recommended.
    Royal Cornwall Museum, Truro, Cornwall
    01872 272205,

    26-27 Sci-Fi Invasion
    After the success of previous Attack of the Daleks events, some other sci-fi visitors will be joining the fray.
    The Tank Museum, Bovington, Dorset
    01929 462359,

    27 Seaweed Festival
    Quay kitchens serving a variety of seaweed dishes, plus live music, craft activities and workshops, talks and demonstrations and street entertainments.
    Clovelly, Bideford, Devon
    01237 431781,

    South East of England and London

    05-28 Sculpture Garden
    Over 180 sculptures created by emerging and professional sculptors, plus demonstrations, art courses and activities suitable for all ages.
    Birtley Estate, Bramley, Surrey
    01483 661150,

    06 Simply Ford
    Ford owners are invited to park within the museum complex for what promises to be a superb day out for both Ford owners and enthusiasts.
    Beaulieu, New Forest, Hampshire
    01590 612345,

    13 Smithfield (2pm)
    A guided tour through an area packed with medieval and Tudor history. Booking essential.
    Museum of London, London
    020 7001 9844,

    19-20 The London Photograph Fair: Special Edition
    Unique and original vintage works from the entire history of photography from the 1840s through the 20th Century will be available to buy.
    King’s College London, Strand, London

    26-27 Model Railway Exhibition
    Marking the 150th anniversary of the birth of the Rother Valley Railway’s builder, Col Stephens with quality layouts, sales stands and refreshments.
    Robertsbridge Village Hall, Robertsbridge, East Sussex
    01580 881833,

    West of England

    05-07 Spring Jousting Tournament
    Be transported back in time to a medieval tournament; complete with authentic tilt yard, royal box, falconry, archery and hand to hand combat.
    Blenheim Palace, Woodstock, Oxfordshire
    01993 810530,

    07 May Day Bank Holiday
    Our traditional May Day celebration returns with maypole dancing, music and festivities.
    Avoncroft Museum of Historic Buildings, Bromsgrove, Worcestershire
    01527 831363,

    17-19 Spring Diesel Festival
    Three days of visiting heritage and modern diesel locomotives, home-fleet action, evening running and one or two surprises.
    Severn Valley Railway, Kidderminster, Worcestershire
    01562 757900,

    19 100 Cockpits and Cabs
    Get a closer look inside 100 cockpits and vehicles from the collection. Booking essential.
    Royal Air Force Museum Cosford, Shifnal, Shropshire
    01902 376200,

    27 Steam & Classic Cars
    See classic cars in Chinnor station car park and spot local wildlife such as deer and Red Kites from the window of a steam train.
    Chinnor & Princes Risborough Railway, Chinnor, Oxfordshire
    07979 055366,

    East of England

    07 Futuristic Farming
    From horses to drones, find out how farming methods have changed over the years.
    Gressenhall Farm & Workhouse, Dereham, Norfolk
    01362 860563,

    12-13 London Transport Weekend
    See a display of some of London Transport’s iconic buses and enjoy steam trains hauled by Metropolitan Number 1.
    Epping Ongar Railway, Ongar, Essex
    01277 365200,

    12-13 Our Viking Heritage (10am-4pm)
    A display of living history from 870AD with battle re-enactments, displays of weaponry, surgery, trading, weaving and cooking from the period.
    Central Park, Peterborough, Cambridgeshire
    01733 768799,

    19-20 Official Re-opening to Worthing
    The first days of public passenger trains on the line north of Dereham to Worthing Level Crossing.
    The Mid-Norfolk Railway, Dereham, Norfolk
    01362 851723,

    26-27 Medieval Mayhem
    Armoured 12th century knights on foot and on horseback compete in a melee of swords and lance with deadly hand to hand combat.
    Lincoln Castle, Lincoln, Lincolnshire
    01522 554559,


    07 May Day Celebrations
    Grab a maypole ribbon and join the traditional dancers as they weave their magic, demonstrating an age-old tradition.
    Black Country Living Museum, Dudley, West Midlands
    0121 557 9643,

    07 Old John Tower – Viewing Day (11am-4pm)
    Discover the history, myths and legends of the Leicester’s famous tower on top of the hill.
    reopens its doors on Friday 30 March
    Bradgate Park, Leicester, Leicestershire
    0116 236 2713,

    16 Beyond the Velvet Rope
    An opportunity to go beyond the velvet rope and examine the beautiful Georgian rooms up close.
    Pickford’s House, Derby, Derbyshire
    01332 641901,

    26-28 The 2018 Crick Boat Show
    Britain’s biggest inland waterways event with free boat trips, live music, children’s activities, a real ale marquee, and food and drink stalls.
    Crick Marina, near Daventry, Northamptonshire
    01283 742970,

    25 May Open Afternoon (1.30-3.30pm)
    See a vast range of objects, often with a real focus on Birmingham and the West Midlands in this behind the scenes tour. Booking essential.
    Museum Collection Centre, Nechells, West Midlands
    0121 348 8231,

    North of England

    06-07 May Day Celebrations
    Have a go at traditional Maypole dancing and enjoy entertainment throughout the day.
    Beamish Museum, Beamish, County Durham
    0191 370 4000,

    06-07, 27-28 Bank Holiday Steamings
    Rescued and restored stationary steam engines – some of which once powered the mills of the North of England – will be running in steam.
    Bolton Steam Museum, Bolton, Greater Manchester
    01204 846490,

    12-13 Amazing Abbeydale 2018
    Celebrate National Mills Weekend with family entertainment, traditional crafts and skills and the chance to see our restored waterwheels.
    Abbeydale Industrial Hamlet, Sheffield, South Yorkshire
    0114 272 2106,

    19-20 Live and Local
    Family festival and fun day with outdoor stage, live music, children’s activities, stalls, licensed bar and hot food. FA Cup Final and royal wedding shown on big screens.
    Lion Salt Works, Northwich, Cheshire
    01244 972197,

    19-20 Tatton Park Country Show 2018
    From Saturday 19 May 2018 to Sunday 20 May 2018
    A family-oriented show with something for everyone including, crafts, food and drink, jousting, birds of prey, terrier racing and dog skills.
    Tatton Park, Knutsford, Cheshire
    01625 374400,


    05 May Day Celebration (11am-4pm )
    Join in for some May madness inspired by the traditions and legends that surround this special time of year.
    St Fagans National Museum of History, Cardiff
    0300 111 2 333,

    18-20 Rail Ale
    A fine selection of real ales and ciders, combined with a variety of music, fine food and steam hauled trains.
    Ffestiniog & Welsh Highland Railways, Porthmadog, Gwynedd
    01766 516000,

    26-28 Living History Weekend
    Discover how life was back in the medieval days. try on armour, take part in a spear drill, see the archers show off their skills, leather work and crafts.
    Beaumaris Castle, Beaumaris
    01248 810361,


    10 Spotlight On: Fashion & Style (2pm)
    Find out about important recent acquisitions to the fashion and textiles collection, and discover the different ways of collecting. Free but booking essential.
    National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh
    0300 123 6789,

    16 Behind the Scenes
    Take part in a behind-the-scenes guided tour of the stores and delve into the City’s fascinating collections of archaeology, history, natural history and world cultures.
    The McManus, Meadowside, Dundee
    01382 307200,

    20 Martyrs, Masons and Monarchs
    Learn how stonemasons constructed medieval buildings, meet characters from the past, and handle real artefacts excavated by archaeologists.
    St Andrews Castle and Cathedral, St Andrews, Fife
    0131 668 8885,

    Northern Ireland

    06-07 Shanes Castle Steam Rally
    More than 40 steam engines and working steam models are expected along with living vans, organs and machinery demonstrating how they worked in bygone times.
    Shanes Castle, Antrim, Co Antrim
    028 9446 4648,

    11 Plots and Plotters Tour of Clifton Street Cemetery (3pm)
    Walk in the footsteps and visit the graves of the reformers and rebels who made Belfast a hotbed of radical activity in the 1790s. Booking essential.
    Clifton House, Belfast
    028 9099 7022,

    • Details correct at time of press – please confirm with event organisers before travelling.

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