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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

Morgan And West.
Photo: Steve Ullathorne. TICKETED

1 Morgan & West: Parlour Tricks

Time travelling magic duo both claim to have been born into Victorian England in 1865. Their magic is of the old-fashioned, music-hall variety with cards, blindfolds, cups, balls - and clever references to quantum waveforms and theoretic physics. Hipsters will love the steampunk aesthetic, but the kids will just be enthralled.

When: Feb 23, 8pm
Where: Gatehouse Theatre, Eastgate Street, Stafford, Staffordshire. ST16 2LT
Contact: +44 (0)1785 254653
More Details: www.morganandwest.co.uk

A nautilus fossil on the beach at Charmouth on Dorset's Jurassic Coast.  The half term school holiday and news of a recent significant find of the jaw bones of a pliosaur brought hunters out in their droves. The local coast is classified as a World Heritage Site and is famous for its abundance of fossils. It covers 95 miles of coastline in East Devon and Dorset, with rocks recording 185 million years of the Earth's history. World Heritage status was achieved because of the site's unique insight into the earth sciences as it clearly depicts a geological Ôwalk through time' spanning the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous periods. Rain causes landslides allowing the cliff face to reveal the treasures beneath. TICKETED

2 Ben Garrod: So You Think You Know About Dinosaurs?

Did dinosaurs eat their own families? Was every Tyrannosaur a fearsome carnivore? Why did Allosaurus headbutt its prey to death? Come and test your knowledge against the TV palaeontologist. With the help of film footage and photos of his own dinosaur digs, he will answer questions and tell you everything you ever wanted to know about the creatures.

When: Feb 24, 2.30pm
Where: Gatehouse Theatre, Eastgate Street, Stafford, Staffordshire. ST16 2LT
Contact: +44 (0)1785 254653
More Details: www.josarsby.com/ben-garrod

A mother ewe with her newborn Spring lamb which was born just a few days ago at the Olde House in Chapel Amble, Cornwall, during the lambing season. TICKETED

3 Lambing Week

Celebrate the arrival of the first lambs of the year on Val and Ray's 600-acre farm by helping to feed the new arrivals. Other activities include a farm trailer ride, nature trail, woodland walk, adventure playground, pony rides (weather permitting), lamb-themed craft activities, and a 'woolly' quiz.

When: Feb 18-26, 10am-5pm, last adm 4pm
Where: Lower Drayton Farm, Lower Drayton, Penkridge, Stafford. ST19 5RE
More Details: www.lowerdraytonfarm.co.uk

The Long Walk, Enville by Kate Mellor FREE EVENT

4 Artists & Places

Another chance to see Rob Pointon's stunning 360-degree painting of Stafford's Market Square, which was commissioned for the Gallery's Architecture exhibition in 2012. It is shown alongside photographs by Kate Mellor and Rick Barks, paintings by Robert Perry and Catherine Brennand and textiles by Rachel Grant.

When: From Jan 14, Mon 9.30am-5pm, Tue 10am-5pm, Wed-Sat 9.30pm-5pm, Sun 1pm-4pm, ends Feb 26
Where: Shire Hall Gallery, Market Square, Stafford, Staffordshire. ST16 2LD
Contact: +44 (0)1785 278345
More Details: www.staffordshire.gov.uk/leisure/museumandgalleries/shirehallgalleries

TICKETED

5 Andy Fairweather Low & The Low Riders

Very much the musician's musician, Low first came to prominence in the 1960s as the lead singer in Amen Corner, a UK band which had four consecutive Top 10 hits. From the early 1990s he was a stalwart of Eric Clapton's backing group, and has also played with Bob Dylan, Roger Waters, George Harrison, Elton John and the late Jimi Hendrix.

When: Feb 26, 7.30pm
Where: Gatehouse Theatre, Eastgate Street, Stafford, Staffordshire. ST16 2LT
Contact: +44 (0)1785 254653
More Details: www.andyfairweatherlow.com

TICKETED

6 Animal Zone

The Animal Zone, at South Staffordshire College's Rodbaston Campus, is home to around 750 animals from meerkats to monkeys, rabbits to alpacas. It's first and foremost an educational facility where students prepare for careers in animal care, but it's open to the public and offers a variety of experiences from Animal Encounters to craft sessions.

When: Sat & Sun 10am-4pm, plus every day during term breaks, ongoing
Where: South Staffordshire College, Rodbaston, Penkridge, Stafford. ST19 5PH
More Details: www.southstaffs.ac.uk/animal-zone

TICKETED

7 The Ancient High House

This impressive, timber-framed Elizabethan town house is the largest of its kind in England, and was built in around 1595 for the wealthy Dorrington family. Historical delights include the Civil War Room visited by King Charles I, a Victorian room displaying 19th century life, and the Staffordshire Yeomanry Museum.

When: Tue-Sat 10am-4pm, ongoing
Where: The Ancient High House, Greengate Street, Stafford, Staffordshire. ST16 2HS
Contact: +44 (0)1785 619130
More Details: www.staffordbc.gov.uk/the-ancient-high-house

FREE EVENT

8 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

FREE EVENT

9 Keith Thompson

The blues-rock guitarist and songwriter has just completed his eighth band album, Catch The Fire. Constant gigging across Europe has arguably brought him a higher profile abroad than at home. As a session musician, he's worked with artists from Steve Winwood to Ruby Turner - his own work is characterised by gritty honesty and a no-nonsense approach.

When: Mar 5, 9pm
Where: The Grapes, 5 Bridge Street, Stafford. ST16 2HL
More Details: www.densitymusic.com

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