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Weekend Picks: Nottingham Open Water Swimming

Sat 19th November (Colwick Country Park, Nottingham)

Credit: Nottingham City Council.

Open water swimmers who enjoy a chilly dip can take the plunge at Colwick Country Park from this weekend. Five ‘Chill Swims’ have been organised following the success of the summer open water swimming sessions. Sessions will be held once a month and will run through till March 2017.

With the water temperature expected to be between 7 or 8 degrees, those wishing to take part have been advised to follow tips for safe cold water swimming. The open water swimming sessions over the summer proved popular, with hundreds of experienced and novice open water swimmers enjoying the freedom of swimming in open water.

For times, prices and more information:


Weekend Picks: Open Studios & Artisan Fair

Fri 18th - Sun 20th November (Banks Mill Studios, Derby)

Credit: Simi Olayiwola

More than 70 makers, designers, artists and creatives will feature at this year’s Banks Mill Open Studios and Artisan Fair this weekend. Organisers say they’re expecting over 1,000 visitors over the three day event to celebrate the arts in Derby.

The fair will host artists and makers of jewellery, ceramics, prints and cards, fine art, textiles and handmade bags. Visitors can meet the artists, designers and makers working in their studios. There’ll also be an Artisan Fair at the Enterprise Centre, just a minutes’ walk from Banks Mill. For times, prices and more information:

Thousands turn out for Leicester Christmas lights switch on

Credit: ITV News.

Leicester Christmas light switch-on takes place tonight and over 15 thousand bulbs are due to be brought to life around 6.30pm this evening. Thousands have already turned out for events including live entertainment ahead of the switch on.

X-Factor winner Sam Bailey is due to take to the main stage alongside the cast of the Christmas pantomime, Jack and the Beanstalk but they'll be joined by another VIP for the main event as Father Christmas is also expected to make an appearance before his busiest month of the year begins.

Bruno Mars announces Midlands tour dates

Bruno Mars has announced he will perform in the Midlands next year during his 85-date world tour.

Bruno Mars performs during the European MTV Europe Music Awards. Credit: PA Images

The singer will play at the Barclaycard Arena in Birmingham on 24 April and the Motorpoint Arena in Nottingham on 27 April 2017.

The 24K Magic World Tour will kick off following the release of his brand-new album in three days time.

The 'Locked Out of Heaven' singer will be playing 10 shows in the UK across April and May.


  1. Maya Patel

Weekend Picks: Winter Food Festival

Winter Food Festival: Sat 12th - Sun 13th November (County Cricket Ground, Northampton)

Credit: Fizz 76

Northampton Winter Food Festival takes place this weekend.

Visitors can enjoy warming winter treats, shopping for gifts and simply getting ready for the festive season.

There’ll be more than 80 food and drink producers, alongside chef demonstrations, free wine tastings, foodie workshops and talks.

Great British Bake Off star Howard Middleton, and Masterchef semi-finalist Jen Charlton will be among the cooks on the demo stage.

Visit the Foodies Lounge for a series of foodie talks from local food heroes and free samples.

If food is your thing, then the Northampton Winter Food Festival is the place to be this weekend.

We have over 80 artisan food and drink stalls, gifts, chef demos all weekend, foodie talks with free samples, free wine tasting sessions, a street food market, kids cookery classes and more.”

– Crispin Slee, Festival Founder

For times, prices and more information:

  1. Maya Patel

Weekend Picks: Vintage Fair

Lou Lou’s Derby Vintage Fair: Sun 13th Nov (Derby Silk Mill, Derby)

Credit: Lou Lou’s Vintage Fair

The touring ‘Lou Lou’s Vintage Fair’ comes to Derby this weekend.

Held at The Silk Mill, the event expects to attract hundreds of vintage lovers with an abundance of vintage treasures.

The fair brings together 40 traders from both Derby and across the country, with an eclectic range of clothing, homeware, jewellery and accessories from the 1920s right through to the 1980s.

“We always enjoy holding our fairs in Derby and we’re delighted to return for this Autumn special. Autumn is an exciting time, where we can search for timeless transitional pieces, find the perfect vintage coat to see us through winter or begin looking for the perfect Christmas present for someone.”

– Lou Lou Glover

As well as vintage fashion, there will also be a tea party and a chance to try South American street food.

Shoppers will also get the chance to be transformed into their favourite vintage icons in the beauty salon. They’ll be able to choose from 1940s victory rolls to 1960s sky-scraping beehive hairstyles.

For times, prices and more information:

  1. Maya Patel

Weekend Picks: Hearing Dogs Celebration

Hearing Dogs Celebration: Sat 12th Nov (Chase Meadow Community Centre, Warwick)

Credit: Paul Wilkinson

Hearing Dogs for Deaf People are holding a celebration event this weekend in Warwick.

There’ll be a hearing dog demonstration during the event so visitors can see first hand how these very clever dogs work to sounds for their deaf recipients.

There’ll also be a number of stallholders selling dog bandanas to pickles and homemade jewellery through to knitted goods.

Hearing Dogs for Deaf People train dogs to help deaf people with everyday sounds that hearing people take for granted, such as the alarm clock, doorbell and smoke alarm.

In addition, the dogs offer independence, confidence and companionship and act as a bridge back into the communities that deaf people are so often isolated from.

This is the fifth year we are holding this event, but this year we are at the new venue of Chase Meadow Community Centre and are very much hoping that the local community will join us too.

There will be stall holders, an auction and perhaps most importantly – lots of cake!”

– Vicky Ryan, Community Fundraising Manager for the Midlands

For times, prices and more information:

  1. Maya Patel

Weekend Picks: Lustre

Lustre: Sat 12th - Sun 13th Nov (Lakeside Arts, Nottingham)

Credit: Nottingham Lakeside Arts

More than 65 of the country's finest contemporary craft makers will be showcasing everything from fine jewellery, bags and hats to ceramics, glass and tableware at Lakeside Arts in Nottingham this weekend.

“I am always especially excited to see the work of the Young Meteors, my selection of newly graduated makers from around the country that hopefully will be the established makers of the future.”

– Makers of the future Lesley Beale, Craft Coordinator at Nottingham Lakeside Arts

For times, prices and more information:

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