Word on the street is that there’s a festival in town – and a pretty epic-sounding one at that. The Bath Festival returns this month (17–26 May) for its celebration of all things literature and music, with a programme bursting with big names from the world of culture. Bag your tickets now for talks by the likes of Melvyn Bragg, Jo Brand and Sara Cox; laugh your socks off with Austentatious; or have a boogie to the music of Roger Eno or Lankum. And don’t miss the almighty Finale Weekend (1–2 June), where the Bath Recreation Ground will host two days of toe-tapping music from the likes of legendary Van Morrison, Grammy Award-winning Clean Bandit and Corinne Bailey Rae. To find out more, we’ve got a whole host of interviews and information about the festival in our special supplement; thebathfestival.org.uk
A new permanent display is opening at the Fashion Museum on 17 May, drawing on the museum’s outstanding collection of historical fashionable dress. Collection Stories brings to life the fascinating tales of some of the incredible items dating from the 19th century which have previously been hidden in the archives. Plus, a new display, Fashion Focus, also opens this month, featuring an enchanting collection of antique dolls; fashionmuseum.co.uk
Cracking cheese Gromit! Carrot Productions have teamed up with Aardman, the creators of the much-loved animation Wallace and Gromit, to offer model-making workshops where you can try creating your very own Gromit at The Forum on 31 May (12.30pm, 3.30pm and 5pm). Suitable for ages 7+, £10pp. There’s also two exciting showings of Wallace and Gromit’s Musical Marvels on the same day (2pm and 6.30pm), where Wallace prepares to perform his musical masterpiece My Concerto in Ee Lad – what could possibly go wrong? Tickets from £14; bathforum.co.uk
Discover something new this month as the city’s popular art trails kick off. More than 180 artists and makers will open their doors to showcase their original work and give demonstrations, allowing visitors to walk from studio to studio, exploring the creativity on offer around the city. The Larkhall Open Studios begins on 4–6 May, followed by the Newbridge Arts Trail on 11–12 May. Then the Bear Flat Artists Open Studios takes place from 25–27 May, before the Widcombe Art Trail concludes the events on 22–23 June; bathopenstudios.co.uk
The Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Institution has teamed up with The Nelson Society and the World Heritage Fund to bring guided walks around the city which focus on the life of Admiral Lord Nelson (1758–1805), who frequently visited Bath while recuperating from illness and battle injuries. Discover some of the key locations that he visited on these hour-long tours which take place on 11 May, 8 and 22 June, 11am, beginning at the BRLSI.
£5 adults, free for children. Book through Bath Box Office; bathboxoffice.org.uk