15 ways to spoil mum
PUBLISHED: 14:04 09 March 2015 | UPDATED: 14:19 09 March 2015
It’s Mother’s Day this month, forget the pot plant, here are 15 special Hertfordshire events to put a big smile on mum’s face
Evening with Monty Don
Much-loved gardening writer and television presenter Monty Don (above) will talk about his life and global garden travels at Hertford Theatre on March 20 in Down to Earth – An Evening with Monty Don. Whether you’re keen to discover the secrets behind creating an organic garden or the benefits of working with nature, don’t miss this engaging event.
Explore Sherrardspark Wood
Enjoy some of the county’s finest woodland alongside expert Wood Wardens on March 7 with the Mammals of Sherrardspark Wood event starting at 11am. Then on March 29 from 2pm is Before Sherrardspark Wood – The Rocks Beneath the Trees, an introduction to the area’s geology. Both walks in Welwyn GC leave from the Pentley Park entrance. Donations of £3 per person are appreciated and dogs on leads are welcome.
Choir in the cathedral
Since its inaugural concert 90 years ago, the St Albans Bach Choir has thrilled audiences. On March 21, this versatile choir made up of professional soloists and talented young singers plus Sinfonia Verdi with baroque instruments, will entertain in the beautiful setting of St Albans Cathedral – the oldest site of continuous Christian worship in Britain. Bach – St Matthew Passion will be conducted by the cathedral’s Master of the Music, Andrew Lucas.
Norton Way Gallery
Some of the finest art in the county is currently on display at Norton Way Gallery in Letchworth, including original works in oil, watercolour and mixed media. Established artists, including Hertfordshire’s Anne Songhurst, Collette Hoefkens (her Winter’s Crown is opposite page, top right) and Peter Fricker are represented as well as talented newcomers. This versatile exhibition isn’t limited to paintings. Sculpture and handcrafted jewellery are also available to view and purchase.
Dinner at The Grove
You could opt for the international theatre of cooking in The Glasshouse Restaurant at The Grove in Chandler’s Cross, where a team of chefs prepare dishes in front of diners. Or perhaps enjoy British comfort food in the hotel’s Stables Restaurant where seasonal ingredients reflect the lively rustic atmosphere. Either way, appetites for great food and enjoyable atmosphere will be sated.
Wine and chocolate
If, like many people, wine and chocolate are two of your mum’s favourite tastes, you may not have imagined she could indulge in the two together. But if an evening spent doing just that sounds like a match made in heaven then Hertfordshire Wine School’s Chocolate and Wine Pairing Evening on March 10 is the place to be. There’ll be seven wines to try alongside truffles, milk and dark chocolates, homemade brownies and chocolate cake. It’s a revelation, and could easily set the standard for future Mothering Sundays...
Sopwell House Spa
An indulgent spa experience, revitalising treatments and luxurious surroundings – what better place to be pampered than the tranquil setting of one of Hertfordshire’s most elegant country house hotels. Sopwell House Spa has first-rate health and beauty facilities and treatments and an experienced team who promise a very relaxing experience. Make the most of your visit by taking advantage of the Jacuzzi, sauna, steam room and swimming pool (above).
English National Opera comes to Hemel Hempstead in this live screening at the Empire, direct from London Coliseum on March 11. La Traviata, a moving story of how the beautiful but fragile courtesan Violetta is coerced into sacrificing her one hope of personal happiness for the sake of her lover’s reputation, exudes passion and tragedy. As compelling as it is powerful, Verdi’s masterpiece includes soprano Elizabeth Zharoff making her UK debut.
John Challis, one of the nation’s much-loved comedy actors has worked with some of the biggest names in show business. Best known as Boycie in Only Fools and Horses, he will recount stories and anecdotes from his career in the intimate setting of Hitchin’s Market Theatre on March 4. And for those who would like to meet the actor, he will be available to sign copies of his autobiography Being Boycie after the show.
A vintage affair
Whether mum drool’s over Edwardian jewels, can’t live without 1940s china or is mad about mid-century furniture, Berkhamsted’s Vintage Fair has all this and more – with a showcase of fabulous quality wares to wear and for the home. With so much to see, you may want refreshments
in between visiting the many stalls of pre-loved goods, so head for the vintage tea room to savour homemade cakes and hot drinks. All will be available in The Courthouse on March 7.
. 5 Creative gifts
Flower arranging. Bullfield Centre, Cutforth Road Sawbridgeworth CM21 9EA. March 11, £25. flowersbyshirley.co.uk
Photography classes. 54 Hazelmere Road, St Albans AL4 9RN. Weekend sessions throughout March, £129. stephaniebeltontraining.com
Make mosaics. 3D weekend project, Westmill Farm, Ware, SG12 0ES. March 7-8, £196. artshedarts.co.uk
Creative writing. Harpenden Writers, 12 Southdown Road, Harpenden, AL5 1PD. March 6, £4. harpendenwriters.com
Style tips. Colour and image analysis introduction, 222 Jessop Road, Stevenage, SG1 5LZ. March 8, free. houseofcolour.co.uk/charlotteprater