The Season

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Can we talk about The Season for a minute, a concept that first came to my attention when I got hold of a copy of the
Sloane Rangers handbook back in the Eighties. How I loved that book. For a teenager growing up in Manchester it seemed incredibly exotic and glamorous, even though when I finally got to London, I realised that a world of penny loafers and red cords wasn’t really what I aspired to at all.
Of course Sloanes don’t really exist anymore. Wealthy Chelsea girls are more likely to be reality TV stars these days rather than Montessori teachers and you’ll find the Hooray Henry’s with a beard living in Hoxton. But the Season still exists and over the the past couple of weeks I’ve popped along to the polo, sipped Pimms at Wimbledon and enjoyed the gardens at the Hampton Court Flower Show (less busy than Chelsea) and decided it’s the best of British distilled down for a more democratic age.

I wrote about the Season in my novel The Proposal and even as recently as the Fifties it was still something very much reserved for members of the social elite. But hop onto Debrett’s website and you’ll find everything from the Boat Race and Bestival to Whiststable Oyster Festival and the Secret Garden Party showing that there’s something in the modern Season for everything taste and price-point.

Season must-dos

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The Summer Exhibition.
Not only can you visit the RA’s summer exhibition you can go in for it. The deadline for submissions is February

Wimbledon
I got tickets in the ballot for the first time this year. Get your application form from the AELTC and apply by December.

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Verve Cliquot Gold Cup Polo
Such a democratic event – we once actually sat behind Prince Harry in the stands.

Cowes Week
You don’t have to sail, just grab a pint and watch the sight of dozen of boats carve through the Solent

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