Here's just a taste of events happening in Lancashire...
PAID: Free Parking, Preston, Sunday, May 7
If you like your jazz funky, fine and storming, then head to The Ferret in Preston for what promises to be a monster of a gig from local jazz stars Free Parking. Led by the immensely talented and experienced Harold Salisbury on saxes, you can expect some popular tunes, and perhaps even some penned by the man himself. Joining Harold on the night are Paul Burgess on drums, Keith Ashcroft on guitar and Norman Helm on bass - between them they have more than a few years experience entertaining the masses! The music starts at 9pm and admission is just £3.
PAID: Game Mania, Blackpool, Saturday, May 6 and Sunday, May 7
This is a must for any gaming fans - featuring retro arcades, consoles, minecraft zone, cosplay prizes, challenges, tournaments, new VR, special guests, game developers, plus meet Mario and Sonic! There will also be a kids zone, so it is great fun for all the family. It’s on at The Winter Gardens, Church Street, Blackpool. Opening times are 10am until 6pm on both days. Tickets are £14.95 for adults and £9.95 for children; under threes go free. For more information call 07857 661581 or visit www.game-mania.co.uk/
PAID: Tenors Unlimited, Clitheroe, Friday, May 5
The internationally acclaimed operatic trio Tenors Unlimited, the ‘Rat Pack of Opera’, are performing at The Grand Theatre, York St, Clitheroe, as part of their nationwide tour in their show called From Venice to Vegas. Hear the best songs from the world’s Opera Houses, Broadway Theatres and Concert Halls. A must-see show for light opera enthusiasts. Curtain up is 7.30pm and tickets are just £20. To get your tickets visit www.thegrandvenue.co.uk/ or call 01200 421599.
FREE AND PAID: Garstang Walking Festival, various places in and around Garstang, from Saturday, May 6 until Sunday, May 14
The theme for this year’s festival is Foreshore to Fells. Walkers will be able to experience the best of spring time in the countryside around Garstang, the Forest of Bowland and the Fylde plain. Make sure you wear walking boots, all weather clothing, and take a packed lunch (if necessary) and a drink with them. Visit wyre.gov.uk/garstangwalkingfestival for more information or call 01995 602125.
PAID: Salsa Northwest UK Congress, Blackpool, Friday, May 5 until Sunday, May 7
Three days of over 100 workshops in a variety of dance styles, Salsa, Bachata, Kizomba, Cuban, Pachanga and the Cha Cha Cha for all abilities, including beginners. Each evening there will be late parties with international star performers. And wooden dance floors have been installed just for this event.It’s at the Hilton Hotel, North Promenade in Blackpool, from 2pm until 2am each day. A full weekend ticket is £95. To book call 07854 517927 or visit www.salsanorthwest.co.uk
PAID: Guided Bat Walk, Lytham St Annes, Saturday, May 6
Take an evening stroll round Fairhaven Lake on the lookout for the creatures that are staying up late. Lots of bats make their home down by the water and rangers will find them using specialist bat detectors. Meet at RSPB Ribble Discovery Centre at Fairhaven Lake in Lytham St Annes for an 8.30pm start. Admission is £7 for members and £10 for non-members. Booking is necessary. Call 01253 796292 for more information and to book. Or visit www.rspb.org.uk
FREE: The Witch of Samlesbury Tour, Samlebsury, Sunday, May 7
You may have heard of the Pendle witches, but the Samlesbury witches committed terrible deeds and got away with their crimes... Samlesbury’s very own wickedly witty witch Janey Southworth will take you on a guided tour through Samlesbury Hall and bring the past back to life – great fun for all the family, and completely free too. Tours begin in the Great Hall at 11am and 2pm. Samlesbury Hall can be found on Preston New Road. For more information call 01254 812010.
PAID: Warton Hall Open Gardens Bluebell Walk, Lytham, from Saturday, May 6 until Sunday, May 14
Warton Hall is a Georgian Manor House set in four acres of garden with a beautiful bluebell woodland walk. It was once owned by Augustus Wyckham Clifton of the Clifton family of Lytham, Lancashire. There are many new additions in 2017 to the gardens, which include the Japanese Water Garden and Japanese Dry Garden. Access to most of the garden is possible for wheelchair users. The Hall is open every day from 10am until 5pm. Admission is £3 for adults and children go free. Warton Hall can be found on Lodge Lane in Lytham. For more information call 07493 199438.
PAID: The Motorcycle Sprint, Hoghton, Sunday, May 7
This is one of the longest standing Motorcycle Sprint Events in Lancashire, so why not go along and share the excitement? You can watch bikes of all classes take on the challenge of the Hoghton Tower drive against the clock.
There will be food and more in and around the track so take along the whole family for a day out. It starts at 10am and admission is £10 (accompanied children free). Visit www.hoghtontower.co.uk for more information and to book tickets.
PAID: Plant Propagation Skills Workshop, Chorley, Saturday, May 7
This is a rare opportunity to work alongside a trained horticulturalist, teacher and member of the Chartered Institute of Horticulture in a beautiful four acre country garden. The workshop is happening at Brinscall Hall, Dick Lane in Brinscall, near Chorley, and runs from 10am until 3pm. Tickets are £50 includes lunch and all refreshements, plus you can take home the seeds and cuttings you prepare on the day. To book call 07443 459818.
PAID: Dawn Chorus Walk, Preston, Sunday, May 7
A real highlight at Brockholes Nature Reserve - hearing the dawn chorus is a magical experience! So rise early and join them for this early morning tour, led by one of their bird song experts. The walk is followed by a full cooked breakfast in the lakeside restaurant. It starts at 5.30am and tickets are £15.95. For more information call 01772 872000. And to book your place, visit www.brockholes.org/events/spring-events-2017/ Brockholes Nature Reserve is off Jct 31 of the M6 at Preston.
PAID: The Military Heritage of Morecambe Bay 1914 - 1945, Lancaster, Saturday, May 6
The Military Heritage of Morecambe Bay 1914 - 1945 is a talk at Lancaster Library exploring the intriguing military landscape and historic sites around Morecambe Bay. It is being delivered by Dr Sam Edwards and Dr Ben Edwards from the Department of History at Manchester Metropolitan University at 2pm. Tickets are £2.50.
PAID: Fun Sails, Morecambe, Tuesday, May 9
Taster Fun Sails are a great way to experience Morecambe Bay from the sea, especially as no prior sailing experience is needed. There’s room for four people aboard the yacht plus the fully qualified Skipper. Sailing trips take place around the time of high tide which changes every day and the whole boating trip lasts about three hours. Dates can be viewed on the website calendar and you can book your Fun Sail online. Full joining instructions will be emailed to you once you’ve made a booking. Read more on the website: www.bayseaschool.com/sailing/fun-sail
PAID: North West Transport Show, Leyland, Sunday, May 7
If it runs on wheels, this is the show for you! Classic trucks, buses, cars, bikes and stationary engines are all expected to attend the British Commercial Vehicle Museum in Leyland. Inside the museum there will also be an interesting display of prams and dolls from members of the International Vintage Pram and Doll Club. And a programme of archive films will be shown in the museum cinema. Open from 10am. Admission charges apply.
FREE: Monthly Guided Reserve Walk, Preston, Sunday, May 7
This monthly weekend wander around Brockholes Nature Reserve near Preston is led by some of their most knowledgeable volunteers and offers the perfect opportunity to learn all about the reserve, the history and how they are developing over time. It starts at 11am and admission is free. Wear suitable clothing and footwear.