Some of Birmingham’s most fascinating historic venues are opening their sites for a series of special events that will delight families, food fans and culture lovers throughout the rest of 2020.

These are the first events the Birmingham Museums Historic Properties, including Aston Hall and Blakesley Hall, have been able to run following the coronavirus lockdown – and there’s not long to wait as they begin in August!

Alex Nicholson-Evans, Commercial Director at Birmingham Museums Trust, said: “We’ve really missed our visitors, and while we can’t fully reopen our Historic Properties, we’re thrilled we can welcome the public back for these unique events. We’ve created a fun programme we are confident we can run safely, so everyone can relax and enjoy themselves. What’s more buying a ticket is a great way to support Birmingham Museums in these incredibly difficult times. We can’t wait to see you!”

The first event on Sunday 23 August is an outdoor theatre experience in the stunning grounds of Aston Hall. Enjoy a charming performance of the classic children’s tale Wind in the Willows by the Attic Theatre and Tread the Boards Theatre Company, with the grand mansion as the backdrop.

Join Toad, Badger, Ratty and Mole in this heart-warming and hilarious show suitable for all ages. Add a Badger’s picnic box, with a range of tasty options to choose from, for an extra treat.

With two performance times to choose from (2pm or 5.30pm) this will be an enchanting experience everyone will enjoy. Tickets start from £15 for adults and £10 for children with the chance to pre-order picnic food boxes when booking tickets. The production will be a socially distanced for both cast and audience. Pre-booking essential here www.birminghammuseums.org.uk/aston/whats-on/wind-in-the-willows-outdoor-theatre.

On Sunday 30 August visit the beautiful gardens of Blakesley Hall for a relaxing summer picnic from 11.30am-3.30pm. The surroundings of this picturesque Tudor house are the perfect setting for this Bank Holiday weekend event. For the ticket price you’ll get a reserved picnic spot on the lawn, a delicious picnic box, be able to enjoy live music from a local folk band, and craft stalls selling handmade gifts. All picnic spots are arranged in order to facilitate social distancing.

Bring your own picnic blankets, outdoor chairs and even a small gazebo and really make a day of it. Pre-order tokens for Pimm’s and cider or enjoy hot and chilled drinks from the Herb Garden Café. You can even pre-book a kid’s craft activity bag, so everything is ready for you when you arrive. Tickets cost £15.00 for adults and £7.00 for children, with the chance to pre-order drinks tokens and activity bags. Pre-booking essential here www.birminghammuseums.org.uk/blakesley/whats-on/blakesley-summer-picnic.

Are you a pizza and wine lover? On Saturday 5 September Sarehole Mill is the place to be for a fun and informal pizza and wine tasting evening. Celebrating all things Italian, you’ll enjoy delicious canapés, pizza tasters and wine tasting in Sarehole Mill’s scenic outdoor courtyard.

The stone baked pizzas are prepared and baked on site by the resident baker who uses the finest ingredients to create authentic Italian style pizza.

The event is hosted by Tony Elvin of The Wine Events Company, who will provide a brief introduction to the basics of wine tasting and guide you through an evening of relaxed and entertaining tasting. You’ll be treated to five Italian wines and learn about the regions they come from and why pizza and wine match so perfectly.

Tickets are £35 and include canapés and pizza tasters with five expertly paired wines. The event runs from 5.45pm – 7.15pm. Over 18s only. Pre-booking essential here www.birminghammuseums.org.uk/sarehole/whats-on/pizza-and-wine-tasting-at-sarehole-mill.

With more unique events taking place throughout September, including guided walks at Blakesley Hall and Sarehole Mill that will bring the local area to life, there’s plenty to look forward to.

Into the autumn and winter months look out for more, including the popular Halloween Pumpkin Flotilla at Sarehole Mill and spooky Ghost Tours, Torch Lit Tours and Christmas Spectacular events at Aston Hall, which shouldn’t be missed!

Visit www.birminghammuseums.org.uk/whats-on which will be updated with all future events, including details of how to book.

Safety and social distancing measures will be a priority at all venues to ensure visitors can relax and enjoy the events. Further details are available on the website.

Birmingham Museums Trust is a charity that cares for the city’s collection of over 1 million objects and artworks across nine venues, bringing peoples stories alive through exhibitions, special events and activities.  60% of the Trust’s income is generated from our cafes, shops, tickets and other commercial activity, so every ticket sale helps to support the work of Birmingham Museums during this challenging time

These events are at the Historic Properties. Thinktank and Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery remain closed for the immediate future.