One of the things I thought I would miss when moving to Colchester was Random Free Stuff To Do. Where we used to live, you couldn't round a corner without tripping over a recycling festival, an anti-racism fair, a tasting trail, a random art installation or some kind of cultural celebration.
But luckily Colchester has Random Free Stuff To Do in spades. Why, only last weekend HackneyBoy was having his hand stamped with a big red F for Felon at Wivenhoe Church Ale while we learnt valuable information about the medieval court system - can it be true that six year olds could be hung? Also I bought six birthday cards for a pound, which is particularly useful when your entire family seems to have been born between October and December.
The weekend before we all jumped on a vintage bus waiting outside Castle Park and were spirited off to the Hythe, where we explored the Colne Lightship, watched carnival dancers and a community choir, then were driven back to the castle which had free entry for Heritage Open Weekend.
We have also enjoyed two children's festivals, a bagpipe display and a cycle race among other things. I don't know if this will continue into the winter, but so far, it's looking good.
An interview with Sarah Matthias
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