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Arts & Culture

  • The all-time sexiest period drama heroes

    Ladies, loosen that corset lest you faint dead away! Regé-Jean Page has got us hot under the collar.... so here are 12 more historical hotties, and a sneak-peak at what's coming in 2021.

  • The artist loved by Obama and the Dalai Lama

    Keep your Turners at The Tate, your Emins at Whitechapel…we're cock-a-hoop to have the latest exhibition by eminent British artist, Nicola Green, right here in Oxfordshire.

  • 8 things to watch to keep January Blues at bay

    Mid-January, you say? T minus two months until spring, but in the meantime, help the long winter nights pass by with Muddy's top TV and film picks for the week.

  • TV Saviours! What to watch this week

    Another week, another seven days to roll around the house, eat crisps, pretend to homeschool and daydream about the return of double-figure temperatures. Here's some fun TV to make it *slightly* more interesting.

  • harry styles

    Is that who I think it is…?! Our favourite music video cameos

    In need of some light-hearted fun? Er, hell yeah! Here, check out Harry Styles and Phoebe Waller-Bridge dancing around in sparkly suits (plus five more brilliant music video cameos).

  • Hello TV! 11 shows you need to watch this week

    It’s a new year but nothing much is new. No matter: we know how this lockdown lark goes. Grab a cuppa, a nice cosy blanket, load up on the carbs and settle in for the night.

  • The very best of Christmas 2020 TV

    Tier 4, Tier schmore. With this much amazing stuff on the tellybox, who needs to go out anyway? Here are 22 brilliant things to watch over the holidays.

  • Fire up the remote! This week’s best TV and films

    Lord, it’s frosty. Even if we could go out, we wouldn’t want to. So grab your hot water bottle, brew a large cup of tea, wrap yourself in that fleecy throw and settle in for the week

  • 12 best podcasts for your winter walks

    Lockdown means that January might be the most anti-social on record. Never mind. Make friends with your podcast app instead.

  • Best new children’s books for 2020

    Looking for stocking fillers? Or perhaps just a gift that keeps giving once Christmas is long gone? Look no further - here are the best books for every age, from tiddlers to pre-teens.

  • Book! Birmingham Royal Ballet’s The Nutcracker

    A 90-minute live streamed performance of this enchanting festive tale by BRB's world-class dancers on Fri Dec 18 will sprinkle you with Christmas cheer - without leaving the house.

  • The Prom

    13 new shows and films to watch this week

    Baby, it's cold outside! We'll be staying in the warm and snuggling down on the sofa to watch these brand new drops on the small screen

  • Muddy’s online panto review: Jack and the Beanstalk

    Curl up on the sofa with a Baileys or under your duvet (as I did) to watch the Belgrade Theatre's fantastic first studio-shot online panto.

  • The RSC’s new Winter 2020 programme

    Kicking off an exciting programme of in-person and live-streamed events is the official launch of The Boy in the Dress cast album, plus Troy Story and Festive Tales.

  • 15 cool things about 2021’s Coventry City of Culture

    ...including The Turner Prize, a weekend of Home Session gigs curated by Terry Hall, a major new theatre commission with the RSC so much more. Seriously, it will be amazzzing.

  • 10 best books for teenagers

    Trying to inspire your teenagers to put down the devices and pick up a boo? The booksellers at The Cobham Bookshop have these suggestions.

  • BOOK NOW! ALSO Festival’s August Bank Holiday weekender

    Snaffle tickets for the UK's first socially-distanced, digitally-blended ideas festival celebrating its seventh year at beautiful Park Farm, Compton Verney, Warwickshire, Fri Aug 28 - Sun Aug 30.

  • Review – Nick Knight: Roses From My Garden

    Nick Knight's new exhibition at Waddesdon Manor is an absolute blooming triumph, says Muddy's Kerry Yates. Check out her review here, and go go go.

  • Aubrey Beardsley

    Culture queen! My August highlights

    A whole month of lolling in the sun (hopefully) requires a whole host of entertainment. Here are the culture picks I'll be soaking up this August, from must-see art to new albums

  • Alice in Lockdown – new UK open-air theatre tour

    Looking for some culture to entertain the kids in August? Warwickshire's Heartbreak Productions’ latest family outdoor performance is coming to scenic venues across the Muddy counties.

  • Culture vulture: my July hitlist

    Missing the theatre and live venues? OMG, me too. Until normal service resumes for the arts world (your guess is as good as mine), here's my personal culture planner for July - podcasts, books, music and theatre. I'll budge up on the sofa, come and join me.

  • Staying in saviour – what to stream this week

    If the sofa is your No.1 destination this week (rain, rain go away!) then you'll be needing my guide to the best telly, theatre, film and online festivals.

  • To be or not to be, David?

    The Broadchurch star and RSC Associate has been answering your kids' lockdown queries on Shakespeare as part of the #RSCHomeworkHelp initiative - and we're all ears!

  • Stars launch RSC Homework Help

    Today Tamsin Greig, Noma Dumezweni and Patrick Stewart launch RSC Homework Help – the chance for UK students to get RSC actors to help unlock Shakespeare’s plays.

  • Culture in quarantine

    Brain melting from Netflix overload already? Culture vultures, rejoice - here's the best of arts and theatre you can stream online.

  • REVIEW: A Monster Calls

    A fantastical fairytale for the digital age - this inventive new UK touring production of Patrick Ness’s award-winning YA tear-jerker lands a raw emotional punch.

  • Behind-the-scenes of… A Monster Calls

    After a successful run at London's Old Vic in 2018, Sally Cookson brings her Olivier Award-winning production to the Belgrade Theatre Coventry from March 3-7, as part of its first ever UK tour.

  • The funniest show on TV is back

    The Cotswolds is all creamy stone cottages, exquisite gastropubs and picture perfect villages, right? Erm...

  • Lights, camera…

    Waddesdon! The National Trust's 'Jewel in the Crown' shines bright with its Christmas Light Trail. Read my insider tips on what to see while you're there.

  • Muddy reviews: Cinderella on Ice

    The spins, jumps and lifts in this Wycombe Swan production of the classic fairy tale are frankly jaw-dropping - but then, what do you expect, it's the Russian Ice Stars leading the charge! Read my review, grab the kids and go.

  • The best children’s books of the year

    From toddlers to teens, we've got the 16 best kids' reads of the year, as picked by our favourite local book shop.

  • Captain Corelli’s Mandolin

    Melly Still and Rona Munro’s adaptation of Louis de Bernières classic novel is a triumph of theatre - turning a glorious mixture of drama, dance, movement and music into a satisfying whole.

  • Review: The Bodyguard

    Alexandra Burke certainly is Queen of the Night in The Bodyguard, now on at the Bristol Hippodrome

  • Party at the Castle!

    Get ready for a serious celebration at Sudeley Castle this summer, with amongst others, tenor Alfie Boe, Will Young, All Saints and Sara Cox’s full on party show - Just can’t Get Enough 80s

  • The wonderful Wizard of Oz

    This isn't Kansas, it's Somerset, in a clever re-working of the iconic tale at The Brewhouse in Taunton

  • Pick of Edinburgh Fringe 2018

    Heading to Europe's biggest arts festival? Check out these Edinburgh Fringe recommendations

  • Me and My Girl

    Chichester Festival Theatre has another hit on its hands with a fun-filled revival of Me and My Girl

  • Muddy heads to Britain’s Forest Fest

    Midnight gigs, campfire storytelling, outdoor theatre, laughing yoga, fascinating forest talks and no wellies in sight! Timber Festival reviewed.

  • Outdoor cinema in Sussex 2018

    Make the most of balmy summer nights and the big sporting events with the Muddy round-up of outdoor cinema in Sussex and nearby.

  • ABBA Super Troupers

    With ABBA releasing two new tracks and Mamma Mia 2 hitting the big screen, there’s never been a better time to wallow in some super-group nostalgia at this immersive exhibition, extended till July 29

  • Birdsong on stage

    Does the First World War tearjerker's stage offensive pack the same emotional punch as Sebastian Faulk's much-loved novel?

  • Ocean Liners: Speed and Style, V&A

    The world's first exhibition to chart the golden age of cruising is a stunner.

  • Real-life Reads

    Muddy's pro-bookworm Kerry Potter is all about real-life stories this month. Well, the truth is often stranger than fiction, after all.

  • The Kite Runner play review

    The Kite Runner on stage

    The play of best-selling novel The Kite Runner is on tour, featuring brilliant on stage percussion

  • The Shadow Factory

    Muddy reviews the very first production at Southampton's brand new NST City theatre, a cine-visual feast co-conceived by the video designers behind London 2012's Opening Ceremony.

  • The best video of the year

    Three Grammy's for Kendrick Lamar in this year's awards, including best video for 'Humble'. We'd better watch it then!

  • Theatre for everyone

    From babes-in-arms to kids on the autism spectrum — The Mayflower, Southampton's relaxed performance brings the magic of live theatre to all.

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    Hot French crime drama – Spiral

    If you haven't yet discovered this gritty Paris crime drama with a strong female lead get bingeing now!

  • woman short auburn hair crossed arms painting purple black blue orange squares triangle white wall

    Gordon House: artist and designer of The White Album

    Gordon House, the designer of the Beatles' White Album grew up in Letchworth. We talk to curator Laura Dennis, ahead of a new exhibition.

  • Go see La Cage Aux Folles!

    John Partridge, Adrian Zmed and Marti Webb star in this fabulous musical about a drag star and his partner playing it straight

  • West End Kids

    Heading to the big smoke this summer? Need a few hours to snooze in the dark? Keep the Mudlets entertained with our pick of the best kids' theatre in town

  • Reviews: The Addams Family

    If you're at a loose end this week and want to entertain you, the kids, the partner, your girlfriends, please see this!

  • Funny girls

    Stand-up comedy may be a male-dominated field but watch out fellas, these funny women are coming to Wells

  • REVIEW: THE RED SHOES

    A ballerina sacrifices everything for her art with tragic consequences (but a great night out for the rest of us)

  • Whistler at Mottisfont

    Glamour, tragedy and theatrical fairy tales from a doyen of the Bright Young Things.

  • Muddy reviews: Around the World in 80 Days, The Brewhouse

    It was Around the Levels in 20 minutes to get to Around the World in 80 Days at The Brewhouse in Taunton on Saturday. We very nearly didn't make it but I'm so glad we did. The very first in-house Christmas production since the theatre re-opened under new management in 2014 is awesome: fast-paced, inventive, with standout performances, Victorian inspired sets and steam punk costumes. It's warmhearted, full of surprizes – and genuinely funny.

School Reviews

Our honest reviews of the UK’s best schools

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Making plans? Find your perfect Pub, Inn, Hotel, Café, Restaurant or Bar across the Muddy counties.

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The insider’s guide to the Top 200 places to live outside London

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