Box on the Docks, Salford
Support local artists while dining waterside by the Quays in Salford, at Box on the Docks, which launches today. Private dining pods seating two to six people have each been curated by a different local artist or collective, with light and sound installations, murals and more. Designs range from graffitied greenhouses to a wooden hut inscribed with poetry and another shaped like a giant record box, plus plenty of deckchairs on the grass. Grindsmith has four pods serving coffee, cake and ice-cream to walk-ins; others are taking bookings, including cocktail bar The Alchemist, plant-based cafe Vertigo (from 3 August) and Dockyard, offering craft ales and pub grub. Times vary, but there’s something on offer most days from breakfast to late evening drinks, with more restaurants to follow in the coming weeks.
Yorkshire Sculpture Park
Photograph: Danny Lawson/PA
With 202 hectares (500 acres) of fields, woodland and landscaped gardens to explore, Yorkshire Sculpture Park is unrivalled as an open-air art gallery in its size and its breadth of contemporary works. Close to Wakefield, the park reopened this week, and is currently exhibiting several pieces from Damien Hirst, including his flayed unicorn, Myth; Sophie Ryder’s giant anthropomorphic rabbits; and Ai Weiwei’s Iron Tree. There are also works by Alfredo Jaar, Bob and Roberta Smith, Julian Opie, Henry Moore, Marc Quinn and many more. The Underground Gallery houses Portuguese artist Joana Vasconcelos’s 12-metre-long multicoloured crochet and fabric Valkyrie Maria Rinaldi and other works in a touring show. Tickets (£6pp) must be booked online in advance; takeaway food is available onsite and picnics are welcome.
Rumble live action gaming, Cambridgeshire
Taking laser tag battling to the next level, new gaming experience Rumble says it will bring “popular battle royale video games, such as Fortnite and Call of Duty to life, with team-based family fun”. After getting kitted out, participants have an hour of live gaming with laser rifles and grenades, scavenging the woodland site for utility boxes containing extra ammo and weapon upgrades. There are several sniper towers and more than 70 hides, with up to 40 gamers playing at a time. Performance is tracked throughout and unveiled on the big screen at the ranger’s cabin once the battle is over. Close to Grafham Water, off the A1 near Huntingdon, it’s suitable for adults and ages 8+, and open every weekend (£15pp, use BACK4JULY before 7 August for 25% off bookings in July and August, weekdays bookings on request).
Netil360, east London
Festoon lighting, disco tunes, lounging on the (artificial) grass – the festival vibe is alive at this rooftop venue in Hackney. As the name suggests, the panoramic views of the city skyline are part of Netil360’s charm, making it a perfect place for sunset. The capacity has been cut (and tickets are bookable in advance) and there are other Covid-19 safety measures in place, such as a one-way bar system. But given the situation, the lively atmosphere will please night owls missing their fix of after-dark antics. The venue, on the roof of Netil House, close to Broadway Market, is open Tuesday to Sunday, and alongside drinks served from the bar, food can be ordered for delivery from partners Venerdi Pizza and plant-based eatery Palm Greens.
Mackerel fishing, Lyme Regis, Dorset
This is fishing for people who don’t like fishing. Small colourful boats head out around the Jurassic Coast, and as the speed picks up, it’s wind in the hair, arms tugging at rods cast off the bow – and taking home the fresh catch for a barbecue. Several local skippers are offering trips this summer, including Nick and Harry May (one hour from £10 adult and £8 child, all equipment included, advance booking advised). Lyme Regis has a sand-and-shingle beach, lots of options for tea and cake, and is a great area for fossil hunting along the coast towards Charmouth, or in the other direction on the beach in Beer, Devon.
The Depot, Cardiff
Spiced shredded jackfruit and shiitake stuffed roti with coconut jam; gin and tonic tempura avocado tacos with slaw; loaded poutine; stacked burgers; stonebaked pizza … The Depot in Cardiff has relaunched with Street Food Social, hosting a bevy of local traders serving world and fusion food. The warehouse venue, close to the River Taff, will host eight street food traders each week (Weds-Sun), until September. The colourful open-sided space has socially distanced seating with table service, and a bar serving till late (three-hour slots bookable in advance).
Cornwall Castaway, Newquay Activity Centre
More than 100 years ago, a lifeboat crew attempting the rescue of Danish ship SS Osten, off the coast of Newquay ran into trouble. Despite capsizing after rescuing the crew, the men reached land without loss of life, but had to seek sanctuary in cliffside caves for three days, waiting for the storm to pass. Celebrating this incredible story, Newquay Activity Centre has launched this activity day aiming to teach survival skills for a variety of modern-day wilderness scenarios. It combines challenges in wild swimming, coasteering, paddleboarding and bushcraft with foraging and building a fire in a cave and navigating a castaway raft (£69pp, includes wetsuit, buoyancy aid and helmet).
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