With Valentines Day over and the loving of young couples safely stowed until next year, its time to look forward to what's on in the Portsmouth area in March 2012 for when you are still looking for things to entertain the children, keep the partner happy or are otherwise bored. The Easter school break starts on 31 March, so it will be in April that the next round of what's on and aimed at children is expected.
Portsmouth is located on the South Coast in Hampshire, easily accessible by road (on the M27), rail (frequent services provided by South West Trains, Southern and First Great Western) and coach (Megabus, National Express and Greyhound UK all serve central Portsmouth)
What's On in Sport
One of the draws for sports fans is the football with Fratton Park being the home of Portsmouth FC. There are four home league matches scheduled for Portsmouth and the atmosphere is lively but safe:
03 March - Portsmouth vs Middlesbrough
17 March - Portsmouth vs Bristol City
20 March - Portsmouth vs Birmingham
31 March - Portsmouth vs Burnley
For cricket fans, the Rosebowl at Hedge End has a match scheduled in April in the LV County Championship.
For fans of local football there is a City of Portsmouth Sunday Football League that play at a number of locations around the city including Cosham King George V, Farlington Pitches and Bansbury Park.
Besides the usual city nightclub facilities there are a number of music venues in Portsmouth that offer both local and multi-national acts. Some of the highlights that are on the playlist for Portsmouth venues this month include:
01 March - Lunchtime Organ Recital - William Drakett; St Thomas Cathedral, Portsmouth
07 March - McFly; Portsmouth Guildhall
08 March - John Hylton as Real Diamond; Kings Theatre, Southsea
10 March - Back for Good (Take That Tribute Band) ; Kings Theatre, Southsea
11 March - Matt Cardle; Portsmouth Guildhall
13 March - The Stranglers; The Pyramids, Southsea
14 March - Mark Morriss (formerly of The Bluetones); Wedgewood Rooms, Southsea
25 March - Noah and the Whale; Portsmouth Guildhall
25 March - Portsmouth Music Festival "Winners Performance Night"; Kings Theatre, Southsea
30-31 March - Denise Black's Loose Screw; The Cellars, Eastney
The Cellars is an intimate music venue in an adapted pub in Eastney which now houses an extensive in-house live performance venue for a range of music, comedy and open mic events; and sits nicely on the corner of a quiet residential area. On most Friday and Saturday nights, there is either a named act, or a collection of local acts under the brand "Jurrasic Mark presents:" for the latter, there are no advance sale and all tickets on the door.
The Wedgewood Rooms is a venue for the up and coming as well as local bands and have previously contributed to the exposure of Kasabian and Travis among others. For those that are into comedy, The Wedgewood Rooms offer regular Wedge Comedy Clubs.
What's On & Local
Many of the theatres offer local media groups the chance to showcase their talents.
01-03 March - Die Fladermaus by J Strauss - University of Portsmouth Drama and Music Society - Kings Theatre, Southsea
24 March - Havant Symphony Orchestra; Fernham Hall, Fareham
All Month - At the Aspex Gallery in Gunwharf Quays, local artist Cornelia Baltes offers a solo exhibition of art with Hooloovoo.
What's On & Participatory
There is nothing to get people involved than a range of events that need a bit of active participation. With the school half-term there will be a bias towards child-based activities, but some of the highlights include:
02 March - Ghost Walk; Portsmouth Historic Dockyard
03 March - Mini Makers (Toddlers > 8 years art session); Aspex @ Gunwharf Quays, Portsmouth
03 March - Guided Walk of Charles Dickens' life and work in Portsmouth; Victory Gate, Portsmouth Historic Dockyard
16 March - Ghost Walk; Spice Island
18 March - Farmers Market; Palmerston Road, Southsea
24-25 March - Eastney Beam Engine House Open Day, Eastney
25 March - Lost Hour at the D-Day Museum
31 March - 15 April - Easter Gift Fair; Gunwharf Quays, Portsmouth
31 March - Tracy Higgs Medium Evening; Kings Theatre, Southsea
What's On for Theatre & Stage Shows
Portsmouth is blessed with a number of excellent stages around the city and just beyond its limits. These can offer a range of theatre performances as well as being the usual hot bed for tribute bands, pantomimes and psychics who can talk to the dead. Portsmouth itself has 2 traditional theatres; the Kings Theatre in Albert Road, Southsea; and the New Theatre Royal on the edge of Portsmouth's pub district on Guildhall Walk:
06 March - Circus of Horrors - The Ventriloquist: Kings Theatre, Southsea
07 March - Swan Lake - Moscow Ballet; Fernham Hall, Fareham
09 March - That'll Be The Day; Kings Theatre, Southsea
12 - 17 March - Chicago; Kings Theatre, Southsea
15 March - JAM JAR Dance Theatre; The Spring Arts Centre, Havant
21 March - Jim Davidson; Kings Theatre, Southsea
24 March - The Chuckle Brothers in Return of the Pirates of the River Rother 2; Kings Theatre, Southsea
28 March - Sarah Millican; Portsmouth Guildhall
29 March - Madama Butterfly; Kings Theatre, Southsea
Portsmouth's New Theatre Royal, Guildhall Walk, do not have any performances listed yet for the month of March.
Portsmouth's St Peter's Theatre, Fraser Road, Southsea do not have any performances listed yet for the month of March.
For those that are into their comedy, there are a range of comedy club nights around the city. Former comedy club chain Jongleurs have a show most Saturday nights in the Tiger Tiger bar in Portsmouth's Gunwharf Quays, whereas in the building formerly known as Jongleurs; Highlight Comedy Club has recently been relatively quiet, however they do have Live and Unsigned contests with an audition night in April and finals in May. Highlights offer Fosters Comedy Live events in their other comedy clubs, but there are none listed in Portsmouth at the moment.
What Exhibitions are On
All Month - Costumes from the final season of "The Tudors"; Mary Rose Museum, Historic Dockyard, Portsmouth
All Month - Hooloovoo Art Exhibition by Cornelia Baltes; Aspex @ Gunwharf Quays, Portsmouth
With Portsmouth being his birthplace, the city is celebrating what would have been Charles Dickens' 200th Birthday on 07 February 1812; with a range of events both organised by the Portsmouth City Council and private organisations. Although Dickens spent very little of his early years in Portsmouth having been moved to Bloomsbury in 1815, his birthplace in Old Commercial Road though has been preserved by Portsmouth City Council circa 1809; something which Dickens' apparently failed to find in 1866 on a visit to Portsmouth. Usually only open April to September, the museum will be open this year from 28 January Tuesday to Sunday and on Bank Holiday Mondays.
All Month - "A Tale of One City" continues to offer an insight into Charles Dickens and the links between his work and life in Portsmouth; City Museum, Portsmouth.
There are always events which do not fall into any group at all. This month in Portsmouth there are lectures, and .
12 March - The Accelerating Universe: Story of the 2011 Nobel Prize in Physics; Portsmouth Grammar School (Bristow-Clavell Science Centre)
15 March - A Portsmouth Museums and Records Society lecture entitled ‘Eastney Beam Engine & Pumping Station from 1880’; D-Day Museum, Southsea
28 March - University of Portsmouth Seminar: Finding New Market Niches; Richmond Building, Portland Street, Portsmouth (Booking required)
What's On in Portsmouth
Portsmouth PO1 2RY, UK
Portsmouth PO5, UK
Portsmouth, Hampshire PO1 3LJ, UK
Southsea, Portsmouth PO5 3NT, UK
Southsea, Portsmouth PO5, UK