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Out to play: the best things to do around the UK this week | Travel

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City Art Centre, Edinburgh

Two new exhibitions are launching for the reopening of City Art Centre on 12 September. Looking beyond the art deco and jazz of the era, Bright Shadows: Scottish Art in the 1920s aims to contrast artworks that deal with the losses of the first world war with pieces focusing on what was a new age of possibility. And City Art Centre at 40 includes highlights from the city’s collection, from 17th-century portraiture to contemporary abstract works. Mimi’s Bakehouse cafe on the ground floor has also reopened, serving all-day brunch and pastries.
Entrance to exhibitions free with allocated time slots booked in advance, edinburghmuseums.org.uk

Liverpool Theatre Festival, Liverpool

St Luke’s Church, the site of Liverpool Theatre Festival 2020


The ruins of St Luke’s, known as “the bombed-out church”, will be hosting nine days of open-air live performance from 11-19 September, including musical theatre, drama, cabaret, family shows and comedy. The programme features the one-man comedy Swan Song, John Godber’s Shakers, standup from Laughterhouse and Deathly Confessions, and oral history project and theatre piece Sweet Mothers, plus fantasy pantomime for younger audiences (tickets from £10). Drinks and pizzas are also available onsite via an app.
liverpooltheatrefestival.com

Truman’s Social Club, London

Truman’s Social Club, Walthamstow


Joining Walthamstow’s craft beer scene, known unofficially as the Blackhorse Beer Mile, historic east London brewer Truman’s has transformed a derelict space into a taproom with a large, twinkly beer garden. The site is also home to Zero Sushi and Mexican Fried Chicken and hosts live music on weekends. There are plans to open the huge adjacent space indoors later this year as a community hub for culture and food, including a new brewery and events space for film screenings and live music.
Booking advised, £5pp reservation deposit redeemable against drinks, trumansbeer.co.uk

Paragliding, County Antrim

Paragliding in County Antrim


These paragliding sessions can take participants soaring up to 2,000ft (600 metres) on their first tandem flight. Heights depend on weather (and courage) using just the natural lift of the wind to take to the skies in a free-flying aircraft. Aerosports UK in Ballynure runs one-day taster course for beginners (£120), including kit training, safety briefing and canopy-control techniques, followed by solo or tandem flights. The season can run through winter and hill jumping locations vary, with the Antrim hills, the Causeway Coast and the Mourne Mountains in County Down all options – depending on wind direction.
aerosports.co.uk

Pub In The Park’s Drive In Garden Party, Knebworth

Pub in the Park’s Drive In Garden Party



Photograph: Edd Cope

Kaiser Chiefs, Soul II Soul, Gabrielle, Basement Jaxx are some of the acts coming to Knebworth House for the Drive in Garden Party this weekend (11-13 September, £47pp). Each vehicle parks in a pre-booked spot with its own “garden”, which includes space for picnic blankets and dancing. Walk-in spaces are also available for those without a car. Local caterers include Kerridge’s, the Mariners and Atul Kochhar – orders can be placed in advance or during the event. Next week the party heads to Tunbridge Wells’ Eridge Park, with a similar line-up, plus Keane and Squeeze.
driveingardenparty.com

Sea kayaking, Anglesey

Explore the natural playground of the north Wales coast with Sea Kayaking Wales’ courses, which run in autumn and winter – including full-day sea kayaking and half-days on Llyn Padarn in Snowdonia (£80/£55pp). Sessions include equipment training, boat-handling skills in both sheltered and open water, and rescue skills. For intermediate and more advanced seafarers, there are one-to-one coaching sessions and bespoke dynamic water courses.
seakayakingwales.com

Slices of Time at Now Gallery, Greenwich

Created by Emmanuelle Moureaux, a vast web of technicolor paper numbers sit suspended in the air at this gallery, each representing a “slice of time” (free with a pre-booked ticket, until 27 September). Following other large-scale installations in Tokyo and Paris, this is the architect-artist’s first in the UK, and is inspired by its location close to the Greenwich meridian. Moureaux’s work has been influenced by the layers and colours on the streets of her long-time home, Tokyo, and by the Japanese concept of shikiri – dividing or creating space with colours. Also on show at Now this month is interdisciplinary collective Resolve’s site-specific installation (14-20 Sept) accompanied by a performances, workshops, screenings and talks challenging ideas of proximity and how it shapes local communities.
nowgallery.co.uk

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From cozy boys to brunch: this week’s fashion trends | Fashion

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Going up

We Are Who We Are Luca Guadagnino’s coming-of-age TV series is Kids meets Call Me By Your Name. Excellent grunge threads, too.

Cozy boys Aka men in cashmere and hoodies who don’t like going out, ever. Replacing softboys as the “men of our times”.

Firepits Still going strong, thanks to Love Island and lockdown.

Carla Bruni’s Zoom lighting tips She recommends lighting your hair from behind and putting a candle in front of you. We’ll try anything at this point.

Uniqlo’s Heattech Truly coming into its own this autumn.

Going down

Orange office chair



Days gone by. Photograph: Getty Images

Office chairs Kamala Harris is photographed on one, on the cover of US Elle. Like seeing the Dead Sea scrolls – a relic of simpler times.

Flood Twitter parlance for a thread of Tweets that are impossible to follow.

Brunch Used to be the new dinner – and is again the new dinner, now we can’t go out at night. Boring.

Texting Thumbs exhausted, face tired from squinting at screens? If you haven’t yet converted to WhatsApp voice notes, now really is the time.

All other political merchandise Joe Biden’s fly swatter has won the internet. Next, please, the election?


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Planning a baby? 6 fertility myths you should stop believing

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When you decide to go the family way, there’s considerable amount of advice you get from your family and friends. Of course, all the advice you get may also be riddled with old wives’ tales and not all scientific in basis. Truth be told, there are so many tips and myths people believe about conception, it can be hard to determine which works and which doesn’t. It can also be uncomfortable for couples to receive advice, especially when they have been trying to have a baby for a while. We bust six such myths for you:


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Scooby shack: secrets and mystery on an off-grid cabin retreat in west Cornwall | Cornwall holidays

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‘Give us a shout if you can’t find the bedroom.” As I read through the check-in details before my trip, this was the line that intrigued me most. After all, I was not staying in a mansion with a maze of corridors, but a woodland cabin.

A few weeks later, standing in the cabin’s living room, I couldn’t find the bedroom. I searched in vain for a door or some sort of drop-down staircase. It was only when I took a more Scooby-Doo approach that the entrance was revealed. I shan’t spoil the fun for future guests, but let’s say there’s more to the bookcases than meets the eye.

The hidden bedroom is one of many lighthearted touches at the recently opened Log Jam. The cabin took owners Huw and Bernice three years to construct at Little Menherion, a Cornish smallholding surrounded by farmland and half a mile from the nearest road.

“Our initial idea was to build it as a writer’s retreat,” Huw told me. That explained the 1930s Imperial Good Companion typewriter I found inside. It has been fully restored, and guests are encouraged to get in touch with their inner Highsmith or Hemingway and tap away on it.

bedroom at Log Jam
Big reveal … the hard-to-spot bedroom at Log Jam

In tune with this old school theme, I’d arrived on foot. From the station at Redruth (nine miles west of Truro, 12 east of St Ives and 11 north-west of Falmouth) it was a pleasant four-mile rural walk over low hills. Staying off-road virtually the entire way, I passed by the tall brick chimneys and tumbledown buildings of former copper mines, now smothered in gorse and the occasional palm. On arrival, I handed Bernice my phone and laptop – on this three-night stay I would attempt to slow down and live well.

“We’ve tried to be as environment-friendly as we can,” Huw said as I explored the cabin, “and we’ve used natural materials wherever possible.” Log Jam, with its frame of local Douglas fir and larch cladding, looks at home in the young grove that shelters it. A pair of slender oaks rise in touching distance of the walls, while a silver-barked sycamore grows right through the spacious veranda.

Stepping inside, I breathed in the rich smell of wood and took in the eye-catching steampunk effect created on one wall with the use of wooden offcuts. Across a covered walkway, a separate cabin housed a shower and a swish composting loo.

exterior-of-log-jam-cabin

Despite the call of the typewriter, I ended up on the comfy sofa, reading a great deal from the cabin’s library. There’s a well-equipped kitchen (and even an induction hob – a rare nod to modernity) and one evening I baked, using the oven heated by the wood-burning stove.

Each morning I sat at a table on the veranda to eat breakfast in the company of birds, the most exotic visitors to the copse being great spotted woodpeckers and a lone greenfinch. I took a daily wander around the smallholding, over a brook, beside a pond and up through a series of small fields to apple orchards and a fledgling woodland. When night fell, I climbed up into the high double bed and experienced what is almost a forgotten pleasure: utter silence. The first night I slept for 10 hours. Admittedly, the following night I was awoken by the bellowing of a herd of red deer, but I’ll take that over traffic noise or sirens anytime.

Little waterfall on brook
Little Menherion’s grounds are crossed by a brook

Though perfectly content to potter in my sylvan bubble, I did force myself out for excursions. Borrowing a funky old mountain bike from Huw and Bernice’s collection, I went village-hopping on country lanes thick with yellow and pink honeysuckle and foxgloves. For the first few miles towards the Helford River, I passed more horse riders than car drivers.

Reaching the coast, I walked out on to Dennis Head to watch ships sliding through a calm sea. On another day, I took a stroll on footpaths up the neighbouring Carnmenellis hill for views of farmland dotted with woods, before dropping down for a circuit of the nearby Stithians reservoir, stopping for coffee and cake at the new shoreside Wild Vibes cafe. On the way back, I got goodies from Little Menherion’s honesty shop: fruit and vegetables picked from the organic kitchen garden and, from the orchards, home-produced ciders.

As I lay in bed on my final morning listening to the rain on the roof, and gazing at a scene composed almost entirely of shades of green, I found myself agreeing with something Bernice had told me – this was much too tranquil a place to reserve just for writers.

Accommodation was provided by Canopy & Stars. Log Jam sleeps two and costs from £110 a night (three-night minimum), canopyandstars.co.uk


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