What’s On With The Times

    Life of Birds

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    SEVEN DAYS OF SOCIAL ACTIVITIES AT A GLANCE

    >> Wednesday
    Today Grosvenor and Hilbert Park will be hosting another of their interesting nature-inspired events. From 10am-2pm it’s all about the life of birds, so meet at the Hub and the park rangers will take you on a tour of the grounds, pointing out various species and then show you how to make seed bombs and identify various details on our feathered friends. For more information visit www.fogh.org.uk

    Wildlife Wednesday happens every week at Scotney Castle during the summer holidays, so if your children are into creepy-crawlies, fish and bugs they’ll enjoy the twice-daily pond-dipping sessions from 11.30am-12.30pm and 1.30-2.30pm. Visit www.nationaltrust.org/scotneycastle

    Minor Mania is the perfect place to take shelter from the rain and offers tiny tots and under-12s a wealth of fun indoor activities to enjoy. The perfect place to let off steam, there are a number of soft play areas for kids to clamber around, and there’s also a great outdoor space if the weather decides to play ball. For more information and to book tickets visit www.minormania.co.uk

    >> Thursday
    Every day until Sunday August 28 there will be an embroidery workshop at Trinity Theatre. Run by Bridget Barber and Diana Byers, it’s the perfect place to spend some time perfecting your needlework skills, seeking help with any tricky detailing or just coming along for a chat. For more information visit www.trinitytheatre.net

    Today there will be a Mini Beast Safari and Young Nature Hunters event at Dunorlan Park. This free summer bug hunt is ideal for children aged six and over. Running from 10.30-11.30am and 2.30-4pm, you’ll have the opportunity to seek out insects, birds and wildlife with the help of some maps and experts who’ll be on hand to guide you. The event is free but pre-booking is advisable. To save your place call 01892 554 171 or email museum@tunbridgewells.gov.uk

    Winnie the Pooh

    The Winnie-the-Pooh Trail is open every day this summer until September 4 at Chartwell, the former home of Winston Churchill near Westerham. Encourage your children to follow the trail to spot the bees and help locate Winnie’s missing honey pot. Tickets cost £1 in addition to usual admission price of £6.70. www.nationaltrust.org.uk/chartwell

    Jazz on the Pantiles continues its summer run this evening with the Groove Agents headlining from 7.30pm.

    >> Friday
    Haysden Country Park in Tonbridge has just undergone a major refurbishment and now boasts a fantastic playground as well as enjoyable walks and a pond where you can fish and spot local wildlife. Entrance is free but for more details visit www.tmbc.gov.uk

    There’s nothing children enjoy more than a day spent in the woods, foraging, exploring and having fun. Head to Wilderness Wood near Uckfield where they can do all this and more – while you join them or let them do a special course while you relax in the cool rustic café. Entrance is free but donations are most welcome. www.wildernesswood.org

    If you’re a Matt Damon fan and love his Bourne films then you’re in luck, as the Moonlight Cinema at the Hop Farm will be showing the latest instalment of the series, Jason Bourne, every night from now until Monday at 8.45pm. Tickets cost £25 per car on the gate or £20 in advance. For more information visit www.moonlightcinema.com

    >> Saturday
    The popular Pantiles Market takes place this weekend so make sure you pop along to pick up your usual gourmet goods, seasonal produce and exotic oils and condiments. For details of traders please visit www.thepantiles.com

    At Sissinghurst Castle you can browse around the inspiring library used frequently by its late owner Vita Sackville-West, scale the narrow staircase up to the property’s impressive lookout tower or wander around the maze-like gardens. But however you decide to spend your time there, you’re guaranteed a most enjoyable day out. Over the summer holidays there’s also a wealth of enjoyable events going on, including farmers’ markets and camping sessions. Normal National Trust prices apply. For further information visit www.nationaltrust.org.uk/sissinghurst-castle

    If you want to work off those post-holiday pounds or get yourself in shape for the beach then make sure you sign up for the weekly Park Runs that happen in both Dunorlan and Tonbridge’s Castle Road (behind the swimming pool) from 9am every Saturday. They are free to attend but you need to register. Go to www.parkrun.org.uk

    Salomons Estate

    >> Sunday
    If you’ve never been for a walk around the glorious grounds of the beautiful former country estate, Salomons, in Southborough, then make sure you go this summer as you’ll see plenty of wildlife in their natural habitat and various plant and tree species. Visiting on a Sunday is perfect as you can enjoy a delicious cream tea on the terrace overlooking the lake afterwards! If you want a guided walk it costs £3 per child and £5 per adult. Visit www.salomons-estate.com

    Llama

    If you just love a little something unusual then head to the Ashdown Llama Farm at Wych Cross this summer and see all this specialist centre has to offer. As well as being able to take a llama for a walk and learn all about them, there are also donkeys, alpacas and reindeers to see, too. Entrance costs £5 per child and £6 per adult, and tickets can be booked from www.llamapark.co.uk

    Tonbridge Castle will host another afternoon of live music courtesy of Invicta Jazz, who will be performing from 3-5pm. The event is free but for more details visit www.tonbridgecastle.org

    >> Monday
    This is the final week to catch The Titanic in Photographs exhibition at Royal Victoria Place in Tunbridge Wells. Running until Sunday August 21, it is an impressive and most moving display of the doomed vessel’s interiors, which includes photos of the first class à la carte restaurant, the Turkish baths and swimming pools on board. There are many rare genuine artefacts, too, including a Cartel wall clock and specially-commissioned Stuart crystalware. (see here for more news on the Titanic exhibition)

    Bewl Water’s Summer Camp for children continues throughout the month of August. They can do a half day of activities from 9am-1.30pm for £24.99 or a full one until 4pm for £39.99. As well as nature walks and treasure hunts, other pursuits include mountain biking, football, painting and pedalos. Open to children aged five and over. Pre-booking and payment is essential. For more information visit www.bewlwater.co.uk

    The final Family Monday at Knole takes place today. The theme is Deer and Animal tracks, so make sure you bring your walking boots and a magnifying glass to help you seek out the most interesting paw and hoof prints! For more information visit www.nationaltrust.org/knole

    >> Tuesday
    This summer you can experience the beauty of Groombridge Place and benefit from a little theatrical entertainment at the same time. Theatre troupe Brymack is putting on two productions each day of The Boy Who Wouldn’t Grow Up – a play based on the life of Peter Pan. They will also be holding drama workshops. Tickets cost £10.95 per child and £14.95 per adult.

    A Midsummer's Night Dream

    This evening at Tonbridge Castle the Illyria Theatre Company will be performing their version of A Midsummer’s Night Dream in the open air. Gates open at 6.30pm and the performance of this classic Shakespearean comedy starts at 7.30pm. For tickets visit www.illyria.uk.com

    Whether your offspring are still teeny-tiny or strapping teenagers, then why not spend a morning or afternoon exploring the wonderful wooded area of Tunbridge Wells Common? There is a short circular walk you can do which is buggy-friendly and not too challenging, but will take in the Wellington Rocks, the cricket grounds and also give you access to various wildlife and flora and fauna. To find out more visit Explore Kent’s website www.explorekent.org

    WORTH THE TRIP:
    Brighton Sea Life Centre

    Orange Clownfish

    Throughout the summer you can dive in and learn all types of fascinating fishy facts at one of the area’s most popular family attractions, Brighton Sealife Centre. During August you can also follow the Disney Pixar interactive trail, where you can discover lots about the real-life versions of Dory and Nemo. Entry costs from £10.50. To book tickets go to www.visitsealife.com