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Stafford

discover the top things to see and do in Stafford

If you’re looking for a relaxing day out without compromising on things to do, then look no further. Stafford is the pretty county town in the heart of the Staffordshire countryside, midway between Stoke-on-Trent and Birmingham. If history’s your thing, check out the famous Stafford Castle with a 900 year history, or the historic architecture of the Ancient High House. Other top things to do include Trentham Monkey Forest, the picturesque Aston Marina, or simply wandering through the quaint streets of this idyllic town.

Best things to do this week in Stafford

Two-year-old George Martin from Battersea, south London grabs Mr Punch by the nose, while puppet-master Tom Suddes looks on, during the 26th Annual Covent Garden May Fayre and Puppet Festival in London.  *  The fair comemorates the first Punch and Judy show seen in London by Samuel Pepys in May 1662.   21/10/04: Punch and Judy shows could be banned by a Bodmin Town council in Cornwall Thursday October 21, 2004. The move follows a protest after they were shown to children during the summer holidays. The show  which has its origins in 16th century Italy features Mr Punch whacking Mrs Punch with a stick. FREE EVENT

1 Puppets From The Douglas Hayward Collection

Douglas Hayward spent a lifetime making and collecting puppets - his collection is now in the care of Stafford County Museum. This fun and interactive exhibition features shadow, rod and glove puppets, marionettes and - of course - an example of everyone's favourite baton-wielding villain, Mr Punch.

When: From Sep 12, Tue-Sat 10am-4pm, ends Nov 11
Where: The Ancient High House, Greengate Street, Stafford, Staffordshire. ST16 2HS
Contact: +44 (0)1785 619130
More Details: www.staffordmuseums.co.uk/documents/Heritage_Art_and_Events_2017.pdf

TICKETED

2 The Masks Of Aphra Behn

Aphra Behn was a real-life Restoration heroine who was possibly the first professional female playwright. She was a staunch Royalist and spied in Antwerp for Charles II. Claire Louise Amias presents a one-woman show dedicated to unravelling the mystery of this self-mythologising woman. Directed by Pradeep Jey.

When: Oct 20, 7.30pm
Where: Gatehouse Theatre, Eastgate Street, Stafford, Staffordshire. ST16 2LT
Contact: +44 (0)1785 254653
More Details: www.amonkeywithcymbals.co.uk

Generic shot of a fruit and veg stall at a farmers market in Richmond, Surry  PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday  November 24, 2007.  Photo credit should read: Steve Parsons/PA Wire FREE EVENT

3 Fine Food & Craft Market

Penkridge's family-run twice-weekly market is one of the most vibrant in the Midlands, with around 100 stalls selling a huge variety of goods. In addition the Fine Food & Craft Market sets up shop on the third Saturday of every month, adding an artisan feel to the covered hall.

When: third Sat of every month 9am-3.30pm, ongoing
Where: Penkridge Markets, Pinfold Lane, Penkridge, Stafford. ST19 5AP
More Details: www.penkridgemarket.co.uk

FREE EVENT

4 The Taskrz

Born out of a love of 1990s-style sludgy guitar sounds, this Midlands-based indie foursome consists of brother and sister Sophie Bret and Jack Tasker, along with violinist Laura Ellement and bassist Rob Haubus. 'Local' they may be, but this assured Staffordshire rock band's loud and poppy tunefulness should be a real source of pride in the region.

When: Oct 21, 9pm, doors
Where: Market Vaults, St. Martins Place, Stafford. ST16 2LA
More Details: www.the-taskers.com

TICKETED

5 Gary Delaney: There's Something About Gary

The double Sony Award-winning writer and Chortle Award nominee continues to add tour dates and sell out venues across the land. Mock The Week, Live At The Apollo and many more have benefited from both his writing and stand-up skills on screen and off. Gary's quotable one-liners are an unmissable treat for comedy buffs and casual observers alike.

When: Oct 21, 8pm
Where: Gatehouse Theatre, Eastgate Street, Stafford, Staffordshire. ST16 2LT
Contact: +44 (0)1785 254653
More Details: www.garydelaney.com

TICKETED

6 Whitney: Queen Of The Night

Forget the showbiz sadness of Whitney's life, and instead celebrate her musical legacy. This dazzling show includes all the hits including I Wanna Dance With Somebody, One Moment In Time and I Will Always Love You. Rebecca Freckleton performs as the pop and R&B singer, backed by a live band and vocalists.

When: Oct 22, 7.30pm
Where: Gatehouse Theatre, Eastgate Street, Stafford, Staffordshire. ST16 2LT
Contact: +44 (0)1785 254653
More Details: www.queenofthenight.co

BOSCOBEL HOUSE Priest hole with hatch open TICKETED

7 English Heritage: Boscobel House And The Royal Oak

The picturesque, timber-framed house is most notable as the hiding place (pictured right) of Charles II in 1651 as he attempted to avoid capture by Cromwell following the Battle of Worcester. Enjoy the rich history of the house, which has many fascinating secrets as well as a 17th-century knot garden and 19th-century farm machinery.

When: Apr 1-Oct 31, Wed-Sun 10am-5pm, Nov 1-Mar 2018, Sat & Sun 10am-4pm, closed Dec 24-26, Jan 1, last adm 1 hour before closing, ends Mar 29 2018
Where: English Heritage: Boscobel House And The Royal Oak, Boscobel Lane, Bishops Wood, Stafford. ST19 9AR
Contact: +44 (0)1902 850244
More Details: www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/boscobel-house-and-the-royal-oak

The garden terraces in June on a misty morning on the Shugborough Estate, Staffordshire. TICKETED

8 National Trust: Shugborough Estate

The ancestral home of the Earls of Lichfield has been reopened under the auspices of the National Trust. Explore the ground-floor rooms of the house, the servants' quarters, the walled garden, a Victorian kitchen, Park Farm and a series of estate walks across 900 acres of Grade I listed parkland.

When: house Oct 3-31, Nov 1-5, Mon-Sun 11am-4pm, house Dec 2-23, Mon-Sun 11am-3pm, grounds Oct 3-31, Nov 1-4, Mon-Sun 10am-5pm, grounds Nov 5-30, Dec 1-24, Dec 26-31, Jan 1-Feb 16 2018, 10am-4pm, Lichfield Apartments by timed ticket only, ongoing
Where: National Trust: Shugborough Estate, Milford, Stafford, Staffordshire. ST17 0XB
Contact: +44 (0)1889 881388
More Details: www.shugborough.org.uk

FREE EVENT

9 Loynton Moss

Autumn and Spring are the best times to enjoy this rugged landscape, now managed by Staffordshire Wildlife Trust. The distinctive, species-rich habitat formed when glaciers melted, leaving first a lake and then an area of wetland. The bog is home to rare insects, and plants such as marsh cinquefoil, cowbane and elongated sedge.

When: Mon-Sun dawn-dusk
Where: Loynton Moss, Woodseaves, Stafford. ST20 0NX
More Details: www.staffs-wildlife.org.uk/reserves/loynton-moss

FREE EVENT

10 Doxey Marshes

This wetland oasis is near the centre of Stafford yet manages to be one of the country's best bird-watching sites. Over 200 species have been recorded and over 80 breeding specimens. There are two hides, a pond-dipping platform and a wax-rubbing trail. Otters, harvest mice and water shrews have also been spotted.

When: Mon-Sun dawn-dusk
Where: Doxey Marshes, Stafford. ST16 1JR
More Details: www.staffs-wildlife.org.uk/reserves/doxey-marshes

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If you’re looking for a relaxing day out without compromising on things to do, then look no further. Stafford is the pretty county town in the heart of the Staffordshire countryside, midway between Stoke-on-Trent and Birmingham. If history’s your thing, check out the famous Stafford Castle with a 900 year history, or the historic architecture of the Ancient High House. Other top things to do include Trentham Monkey Forest, the picturesque Aston Marina, or simply wandering through the quaint streets of this idyllic town.