What to do in West Essex in January

PUBLISHED: 13:39 08 January 2020 | UPDATED: 13:39 08 January 2020

Is your dog the cutest around?

Is your dog the cutest around?

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Our picks of the stand out January events around West Essex

Until January 12

Amazingly the Woodford Pantomime is now in its 59th year, so no wonder it's such a firm fixture in the town's calendar. For this outing, it's the story of the girl with the ridiculously long tresses - yes we're talking Rapunzel, a panto that's never been performed by the team before, but promises all the fun and excitement of previous productions.

Tickets £11-£14.50, times vary; James Hawkey Hall, Broomhill Road, Woodford, IG8 0BG; 01992 524 371; woodfordpantomime.co.uk

Until January 17

Back for a seventh year, this month sees the launch of St Clare's Cutest Canine Competition, with the prettiest pup or handsomeness hound going on to win the chance to lead the annual Winter Walkies event, which this year takes place on February 23. If you think your dog has got what it takes then simply email a picture of your marvellous mutt along with a brief description (including name, breed and age) to fund@stclarehospice.org.uk by midday on Friday January 17 to go forward to the public vote.

January 9-11

If a family drama that mingles raw emotion with black humour sounds like your cup of tea, then you should get yourself along to Lopping Hall for the latest production of the Loughton Amateur Dramatic Society (LADS). Called Colder than Here, the play follows a terminally ill mother who is determined to take back control and sets about planning her funeral. And while the subject matter may sound bleak, rest assured the production is not. Indeed, it even boasts the strapline: 'Who said dying couldn't be a laughing matter', with director Adam Rabinowitz adding: "It's not a story about death, but a story about life!"

Tickets £10; 8pm; 189 High Road, Loughton IG10 4LF; 07552 736110; lads.org.uk

January 24-26

A traditional panto is always a fine thing, and Loughton's pulls in the punters from miles around. This year the Upstage Theatre Company will be taking on Jack and the Beanstalk with Lopping Hall transformed into the village of Pleasantvale, which is being terrorised by the giant Blundabore. Enter Jack, stage left, on a mission to free the villagers from the evil giant's clutches.

Tickets £9 adult, £6 child, £32 family, times vary; 189 High Road, Loughton, Essex, IG10 4LF; ticketsource.co.uk

January 25

Burns Night has always been a great way to get back into socialising after all the Christmas shenanigans, which is what makes the Epping Forest Burns Supper such a popular event. Hosted by the Loughton, Buckhurst Hill and Chigwell Rotary Club at the Epping Forest Hotel, the evening promises good food, great company, songs, poetry and provocative humour.

Tickets £38; 7pm-11pm; 30 Oak Hill, Epping, IG8 9NY; eventbrite.co.uk

January 25-May 2

A new exhibition arrives at the Epping Forest District Museum and for anyone with an interest in history and fashion, it really is a must. Called You Wear It Well, the event showcases more than 1,500 outfits and accessories, spanning an incredible 500 years. Included in the collection is everything from a Tudor stocking to a 2012 Paralympic Games Maker kit.

Entry free; Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday 10am- 4pm and Saturday 10am- 5pm; 39-41 Sun Street, Waltham Abbey, EN9 1EL; 01992 716882; efdmuseum.com

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