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Pony near Hampton Ridge
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New Forest What's On
October 2018

The New Forest National Park covers a relatively small geographical area, yet residents and visitors have access to an extensive New Forest Whats On programme that features a wide range of events and activities.

Find out about Whats On in the New Forest with the guide below.

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What's On - the October events programme
(single day events first, followed by longer running events)

Monday, 1st October
  • Brockenhurst Village Hall, Older Drivers' Forum, 9.30am - 3.00pm. Need advice on driving safely for longer? Drop in with friends and family any time between 9.30am and 3.00pm. No appointment needed. Free event.
  • Burley Village Hall, Film night.
Wednesday, 3rd October
  • Lyndhurst Community Centre, BHI Auction, 7.30pm.
Thursday, 4th October
  • Lyndhurst Community Centre, Paraphernalia Fair, 10.00am - 4.00pm.
Friday, 5th October
  • Lymington Baptist Church, opposite the St Barbe Museum, East Cliff Hall - A Victorian Villa, doors open at 7.00pm and the talk starts at 7.30pm. An illustrated talk by Sarah Newman, Russell-Cotes Art Gallery and Museum Manager and former St Barbe Community and Exhibitions Officer, about this unique Victorian villa, built by hoteliers Sir Merton and Annie Russell-Cotes on the cliff top of Bournemouth in 1901. East Cliff Hall was both a lavishly decorated home and a showcase for their eclectic collection of fine and decorative arts and natural history and ethnography gathered on their travels around the world. A Friends of St Barbe event. (Entrance is free for Friends and £5 for others.)
Saturday, 6th October
  • Lyndhurst Community Centre, Food and Gift Market, 10.00am - 3.00pm.
Sunday, 7th October
  • Lyndhurst Community Centre, Foresta Artisan Fair, 10.00am - 4.00pm.
Tuesday, 9th October
  • St Barbe Museum and Art Gallery, Lymington, Knit and Natter, drop-in between 2.00pm and 4.00pm. Help to create knitted or crocheted farmyard animals for a soft play area in the museum. (Free event).
Wednesday, 10th October
  • Lyndhurst Community Centre, RSPB Group meeting, 7.30pm.
Friday, 12th October
  • Lyndhurst Community Centre, Woolovers Sale, 10.00am - 4.00pm.
Saturday, 13th October
  • Brockenhurst Village Hall, Mark Thompson's Spectacular Science Show, 2.00pm - 3.45pm. You think Science is boring? Think again, this is science like you have never seen it before. Explore the strange and magical properties of matter with fireballs, fire tornadoes and explosive chemical reactions. Mark Thompson has been enthralling audiences for over 20 years with his fascinating journeys around the Universe. Now he turning his attention to things a little closer to home.
    Suitable for a family audience from 4 years upwards. Doors open at 2.00pm, show starts at 2.30pm. Tickets are available via the Village Hall website.
Sunday, 14th October
  • Lyndhurst Community Centre, Teddy Bear Fair, 10.30am - 4.00pm.
  • Walk The Test Way, Minstead Trust event, 7.00am - 6.00pm. Go the extra mile for Minstead Trust this Autumn, walking part or all of the Test Way which takes you on a beautiful tour of the Hampshire countryside. Walk as an individual fundraiser or complete it with a group of friends, even bring your four-legged companions along too. With five walk length options (5, 8, 11, 16 or 25.5 miles) you can pick the perfect challenge just for you.
    Raising just £50 ensures someone with a learning disability get's a day's employment training with our social enterprises, in horticulture, woodwork or catering.
    Tickets - £12.00 adult registration and £6.00 child registration (15 and under), this entrance fee covers transportation to your chosen start point, marshalling and paramedic support organised by Romsey and Test Rotary. More details are here.
Tuesday, 16th October
  • Explorer Walk, meet at Beaulieu Road car park, 10.00am - 1.00pm. Enjoy a three hour, 5 mile, guided walk with an introduction to Commoning. (Forestry Commission event.) 15 years +, £6 per person, please wear suitable outdoor clothing and footwear and bring refreshments, advanced booking is essential, dogs are allowed.
Wednesday, 17th October
  • St Barbe Museum and Art Gallery, Lymington, Tea and Memories, drop-in between 2.00pm and 4.00pm. A chance for older residents to look at photographs and objects and share their memories of times gone by. Bring your friends and join us for a cup of tea and a chat. There will be a different theme each session, starting with Hospitals and Healthcare on Wednesday, 18th July followed by Wellworthy on Wednesday 17th October. (Free event).
  • Lyndhurst Community Centre, New Forest Art Society, 7.30pm - 9.30pm. The New Forest Art Society is pleased to welcome Jo Bressloff, local professional artist and art educator, to give an illustrated talk about her paintings, entitled 'Southampton Water - Where the Sea meets the Forest and the Docks'. Southampton's sea, land and city-scapes have inspired Jo to create observational drawings of Southampton water. In her studio at Dukes Keep, Jo has been exploring ways of combining the drawings with found objects from the seashore, to make mixed media paintings and sculptures. Guest are most welcome to attend this talk - entry fee £4.
Friday, 19th October
  • Brockenhurst Village Hall, Film Night - Mary Shelley (12A), 7.00pm - 10.30pm. The Cinema is in the Forest Hall. The doors open at 7.00pm and the evening programme begins at 7.30pm. After a short film or two and a trailer for the next film, there is an interval when you can chat with friends while enjoying a glass of wine, ice creams, coffee, tea, cake etc. before settling down to watch the main film.
    The tempestuous romance that inspired one of Gothic literature's most influential works, Frankenstein, is brought to life in this film, starring Elle Fanning. Mary Godwin was the daughter of two radical writers and had an unconventional upbringing. And, aged sixteen, she ran away with the poet, Percy Shelley. Later, one stormy, summer night at the Villa Diodati on Lake Geneva, the poet Byron, a young doctor, John Polidori, the Shelleys and Mary's step sister decided to write horror stories for fun.
    Buy your tickets online via the Village Hall website, from the Village Hall office (Monday - Friday 9.00am - 1.00pm), or from Pot Pouri. Tickets are also available on the door for £6.50.
  • A Walk on the Wild Side, meet at Wilverley Plain car park, 10.00am - 2.00pm. Join one of the Forestry Commission's Volunteer Rangers on a 7 mile walk and learn more about the roles of the Verderers, Agisters and Keepers and the management of our four legged architects - the New Forest ponies. 12 years +, £6 per person, please wear suitable outdoor clothing and footwear and bring refreshments, advanced booking is essential, dogs are allowed.
Sunday, 21st October
  • Autumn in the Forest, meet in the Eyeworth Pond car park, 9.30am - 2.00pm. Join two of the Forestry Commission's Volunteer Rangers on this 6 mile autumnal walk to savour the colours, sights and sounds of the Forest at this special time of the year. 16 years +, £6 per person, please wear suitable outdoor clothing and footwear, and bring refreshments and a packed lunch. Advanced booking is essential. Sorry, dogs are not allowed.
Tuesday, 23rd October
  • New Forest Heritage Centre, Discovery Day, 10.00am - 4.00pm. The New Forest Centre's Discovery Days run every Tuesday and Thursday throughout the school holidays so why not drop in and have a go at some Forest-related crafts? There's a different theme each week for our crafts and plenty of quizzes, museum trails and colouring activities to keep the whole family busy. Museum entry is free (as is our WIFI) and craft activities are by donation - there's no need to book, just drop in.
Thursday, 25th October
  • New Forest Heritage Centre, Discovery Day, 10.00am - 4.00pm. The New Forest Centre's Discovery Days run every Tuesday and Thursday throughout the school holidays so why not drop in and have a go at some Forest-related crafts? There's a different theme each week for our crafts and plenty of quizzes, museum trails and colouring activities to keep the whole family busy. Museum entry is free (as is our WIFI) and craft activities are by donation - there's no need to book, just drop in.
  • Autumn Through a Lens, meet at Anderwood car park, 10.00am - 3.00pm. Don't forget your camera for this gentle 4 mile walk with lots of opportunities to capture the beautiful autumn scenery of the New Forest. (Forestry Commission event.) 12 years +, £6 per person, please wear suitable outdoor clothing and footwear, and bring refreshments and a packed lunch. Advanced booking is essential. Sorry, dogs are not allowed.
  • St Barbe Museum and Art Gallery, Lymington, Bones and Beasties workshop, 11.00am - 12.00 noon. Natural Selection Learning will be helping us discover more about the natural world with hands-on activities in this Halloween inspired workshop. Get the chance to examine real animal bones, construct a full-size skeleton, discover creepy crawlies that glow in the dark, and gather body bits for a witch's spell. (No live animals used.)
    Please note, museum admission purchase is not required to take part in this activity, pre-booking is essential - tel 01590 676969 - and children must be accompanied by an adult. £3.00 per child (does not include admission to the museum), adults free of charge - maximum of one adult per child.
Friday, 26th October
  • New Forest Reptile Centre, Fascinating Fungi, 10.00am - 4.00pm. Meet with local fungi enthusiasts from the Hampshire Fungus Recording Group (HFRG). There will be short walks to see what can be found in the Forest at this time of year from the fascinating kingdom of fungi. For more information contact Eric 01962 867140 07964 215424, Alan 07950 223232 or Stuart 01794 522192. (Forestry Commission event.) Suitable for all ages, free admission, booking is not required - you can just turn up, dogs are allowed.
  • St Barbe Museum and Art Gallery, Lymington, Things That Go Bang in the Night, drop-in between 11.00am and 12.30pm, and 1.30pm and 3.00pm. A mash-up of Halloween and Bonfire Night crafts, such as spooky window pumpkins and sparkling cardboard fireworks, to keep the kids amused and your house decorated for the coming festivals. Entrance is included with museum admission or £3 per child without museum / gallery admission. Children must be accompanied. Booking is not necessary.
  • Lyndhurst Community Centre, Film Night - The Mountain Between Us, 7.30pm. Stranded after a tragic plane crash, two strangers must forge a connection to survive the extreme elements of a remote snow covered mountain. When they realise help is not coming, they embark on a terrifying journey across hundreds of miles of wilderness, pushing one another to endure and igniting an unexpected attraction. The film is directed by Academy Award nominee Hany Abu-Asad and stars Academy Award winner Kate Winslet and Idris Elba.
    Doors open at 7.00pm, tickets are £4.50 for members of the Centre and £5.00 for non-members.
    (This is one of the films from the Centre's 'Film Suggestions Book' so it is hoped many of you will like it. Please continue to suggest any films you think might be appreciated.)
  • New Forest Heritage Centre, Museums at Night - After dark, 6.00pm - 7.30pm. Dress up in your spookiest outfit, bring a torch and visit our museum after dark. Learn about the Forest's nocturnal animals with crafts, trails and other drop-in activities. (Activities by donation, booking not required. Part of the Museums at Night scheme.)
Saturday, 27th October
  • New Forest Reptile Centre, Fascinating Fungi, 10.00am - 4.00pm. Meet with local fungi enthusiasts from the Hampshire Fungus Recording Group (HFRG). There will be short walks to see what can be found in the Forest at this time of year from the fascinating kingdom of fungi. For more information contact Eric 01962 867140 07964 215424, Alan 07950 223232 or Stuart 01794 522192. (Forestry Commission event.) Suitable for all ages, free admission, booking is not required - you can just turn up, dogs are allowed.
  • St Barbe Museum and Art Gallery, Lymington, Lantern-lit Spooky Stories, 4.30pm - 5.45pm. Make your own Halloween lantern then stay late at the museum to hear spooky ghost stories by lantern-light. Suitable for 5+ years but the scary stories may not be suitable for the youngest visitors, although the event is aimed at children. Please note, museum admission purchase is not required to take part in this activity, pre-booking is essential - tel 01590 676969 - and children must be accompanied by an adult. £5.00 per child (does not include admission to the museum), adults free of charge - maximum of one adult per child.
Sunday, 28th October
  • Brockenhurst Village Hall, The Rhythm - Tea Dance, 2.00pm - 6.00pm. Sunday afternoon tea dances at Brockenhurst Village Hall. A wide range of music to suit different styles of dance with the emphasis on smooth jive and blues. Fun and friendly atmosphere. Plenty of parking and and only a 10 minute walk from the train station. Free water, tea, coffee and cakes. £6 entry fee payable on the door.
  • New Forest Reptile Centre, Fascinating Fungi, 10.00am - 2.30pm. Meet with local fungi enthusiasts from the Hampshire Fungus Recording Group (HFRG). There will be short walks to see what can be found in the Forest at this time of year from the fascinating kingdom of fungi. For more information contact Eric 01962 867140 07964 215424, Alan 07950 223232 or Stuart 01794 522192. (Forestry Commission event.) Suitable for all ages, free admission, booking is not required - you can just turn up, dogs are allowed.
  • Lyndhurst Community Centre, Dolls House Fair, 10.00am - 4.00pm.
Monday, 29th October
  • Lyndhurst Community Centre, New Forest Knowledge Conference - The role of commoning in the maintenance of landscape and ecology: a New Forest, National and Global perspective, 9.45am - 5.00pm. Commoning is recognised as important in the survival of the New Forest and the conference will consider the use and significance of common pool resources from a historical, local, national and international perspective. For more details and to book tickets.

Longer running events

Saturday 15th September to Sunday, 28th October
  • New Forest Heritage Centre, Barry Peckham - A Retrospective, 10.00am - 4.30pm. Enjoy the work of one of the New Forest's leading artists in this retrospective exhibition celebrating 50 years. A New Forest native, Barry paints in oils and watercolours and prefers to take his inspiration directly from the nature surrounding him. Free entry.
Saturday, 29th September to Sunday, 25th November
  • St Barbe Museum and Art Gallery, Lymington, Exhibition - Colour Cuts by Allen William Seaby and John Edgar Platt, 10.00am - 5.00pm (Monday - Saturday), 10.00am - 4.00pm (Sunday). A unique exhibition based around two of the greatest exponents of colour woodcut prints: Allen William Seaby (1867 - 1953) a regular visitor to the New Forest, and John Edgar Platt (1886 - 1967) in partnership with the artists' estates.
    This exhibition also includes paintings by Platt's son Michael, and the prints of Seaby's grandson Robert Gilmor.
    Museum and Gallery admission prices:
    With gift aid - Adult £6, Concession £5, Family (two adults and up to four children) £12, Child (under 16) £3, Under 5s free. National Art Pass holders free. Without gift aid - Adult £5.45, Concession £4.45, Family £10.90, Child £2.70.
Monday, 1st October to Sunday, 4th November
  • Exbury Gardens, Nerine Exhibition, 10.00am - 5.00pm. Exbury's stunning collection of sparkling Nerine sarniensis or 'Jewel Lilies' will be on public show. Lionel de Rothschild first developed and hybridised the tender greenhouse-loving Nerines at Exbury in the 1920s and '30s, and now his grandson, Nicholas de Rothschild, is continuing his wonderful work.
    Originally found on Table Mountain overlooking Cape Town in South Africa, the jewel lilies flower in a spectrum of colours from their original oranges, scarlet and white through new purples, pinks, mauves, reds, scarlets, copper and bronzes where they scintillate in the sunshine with gold or silver crystalline flecks that make their petals sparkle. Nicholas has since produced well over 100 new hybrids and collectors and visitors to Exbury may buy Nerines that have never been seen before.
    The collection will be displayed in the Five Arrows Gallery, where their extraordinary beauty will be shown off to best advantage. A wide range of Nerines will be available to purchase, with growing instructions included.
    Admission to the exhibition is included with entrance to the Gardens, which will be looking spectacular with brilliant autumnal colour.
Thursday and Friday, 11th and 12th October
  • St Barbe Museum and Art Gallery, Lymington, Wood engraving two day course with Peter Brown, 10.00am - 4.30pm. An introduction to wood engraving. On day one you will look at tools and the marks they can make and how to use them to create tones. On the next day you will engrave your own image onto wood. Suitable for those with some drawing experience. No need to have knowledge of printmaking. All materials provided. Price £100 - lunch not included, pre-booking essential, limited places available - tel 01590 676969.
Saturday and Sunday, 13th and 14th October
  • Burley Village Hall, Craft Fayre.
Saturday, 13th October to Sunday, 28th October
  • New Forest Walking Festival. From archaeologists to mycologists, a swarm of experts will be seen in the New Forest over the two weeks starting on Saturday 13th October as they lead a series of more than 80 guided walks as part of the National Park's annual walking festival. More information and book tickets.
Saturday and Sunday, 20th and 21st October
  • Lyndhurst Community Centre, New Forest Art Society Exhibition, 10.00am - 4.00pm.
Monday, 22nd October to Friday, 26th October
  • Furzey Gardens, Half Term Fun - Make An Animal Mask, 11.00am - 3.00pm. Keep your children entertained this October half term with our interactive arts and crafts activities at Furzey Gardens. Unleash their creative skills whilst making and decorating woodland animal masks to take home, with a free drink and biscuit included.
    Location - Furzey Gardens, School Lane, Minstead, SO43 7GL. Tickets - online bookings £3.00 subject to availability or £3.50 when purchased on the day at Furzey Gardens. Normal Gardens Entrance donations also apply. More details are here.
Monday, 22nd October to Sunday, 28th October
  • Exbury Gardens, Halloween at Exbury. All aboard The Monster. Ride our ghost train this half term and get stuck into halloween-themed craft activities, creepy competitions and gruesome garden trails for a ghostly-grand family day out.
    Ghost train - back due to popular demand, vampire Batty and skeleton Boney will be guiding guests through the gardens on our ghoulish ghost train. Families will encounter werewolves, witches, zombie brides, devils and all manner of gruesome characters. Plus prizes will be awarded to the best dressed children on each train ride, so make sure you've donned your spookiest clobber to be in with a chance to win. The ghost train will be running every 45 minutes at the following times - 10.45, 11.30, 12.15, 13.30, 14.15, 15.00 and 15.45.
    Halloween crafts - enter our Haunted Craft Workshop, if you dare, in the Railway Shed to take part in frightful colouring, cutting, sticking and the chance to design your own witch or create your own pipe-cleaner spider. You could also become your favourite monster with our professional facepainter - small charge applies - also located in the Railway Shed.
    Pumpkin carving - closer to the vile Visitor Entrance you can design your own pumpkin with assisted carving at a cost of just £3 per pumpkin.
    Witch's broomstick trail - a spell has gone awry and broomsticks containing secret halloween messages have been hidden between the vile Visitor Entrance and the rotten Railway Station. Can you find them? If you think you're up to the challenge, pick up a trail map from the Visitor Entrance and get searching.
    Halloween menu - Mr Eddy's Restaurant has a brand new spooky menu specially for Halloween.
    Full details of prices and booking information are on the Exbury website.
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** New Forest ponies **
New Forest ponies in the road
Ponies, cattle, pigs, sheep and donkeys are a popular part of the New Forest scene, but during the first six months of 2018, 36 animals were killed or injured on Forest roads, compared with 26 in the same period in 2017, a shocking rise of 38%.
** Always take care when driving **
Content produced by Andrew Walmsley
Content produced by Andrew Walmsley