Country Life rounds up the best activities this weekend: explore Hay-on-Wye on foot or book a Christmas wine tasting.

October 2–11 ‘Harriet Bane & Georgina Warne’, Jonathan Cooper Park Walk Gallery, 20, Park Walk, London SW10. Birds and animals in watercolour, stoneware, earthenware and porcelain (020–7351 0410;


October 1 ‘The Unlovable Church’, St Paul’s Covent Garden, Bedford Street, London WC2. Matthew Rice discusses some of the less well-known examples of ecclesiastical architecture featured in his Rice’s Church Primer, followed by a recital from Pavel Timofeyevsky. 5.30pm for 6.30pm, tickets cost £27.50, including drinks and canapés (

October 7 A. N. Wilson on Queen Victoria, Hatchards, 187, Piccadilly, London W1. The writer on his groundbreaking new biography of the monarch. 6.30pm, tickets £8, redeemable against the purchase of the book on the night and including a glass of wine (020–7439 9921;

October 3–12 The Times and The Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival, various venues, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire. Speakers include Sir Ranulph Fiennes, Sarah Waters, Geoffrey Boycott and Alan Titchmarsh (0844 880 8094;

October 8–12 Hay Walking Festival, in and around Hay-on-Wye, Powys. A full programme of guided walks graded according to their length and difficulty. Booking advisable (01497 822423;


What to book this weekend
October 10 An evening with John Goodall, Ettington Park Hotel, Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire. Explore the history of the country house in general (and Gothic Revival Ettington Park in particular) with Country Life’s Architectural Editor. Tickets £55, including a three-course dinner (01789 450123;

December 15 ‘Twelve Christmas Wines’, Berry Bros & Rudd, 3, St James’s Street, London SW1. Tutored cellar tasting with buying director Mark Pardoe MW. 6.30pm, £65 (0800 280 2440;


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