PEOPLE out and about in the Cotswolds over the bank holiday weekend might just dodge the showers to enjoy an array of events for the family.

The Met Office is predicting generally unsettled weather throughout next weekend, with showers or longer spells of rain for most, but some drier and brighter interludes as well.

Organisers of the Shipston Wool Fair will be hoping for a dry day on Bank Holiday Monday, as the event celebrates everything to do with sheep and wool.

This year's event, which runs from 10am to 4pm, is being opened by BBC presenter Sue Cook and will include live bands, rare breed sheep on display and shearing demonstrations.

In the Exhibition Marquee visitors can see the newly-completed Shipston Tapestry, a community project that took more than 3,000 hours and 200 people to complete which started life at the 2012 Wool Fair to celebrate the Queen’s Jubilee.

TV Historian, Bryan McNerney, will also unveil the finished tapestry at 10.45am and open the new Shipston Heritage Centre, celebrating all things wool related.

A steam locomotive that spent its entire life from 1919 in South Wales, labouring with heavy coal trains and sold for scrap by British Railways in 1962, is making a return this weekend.

After a long and complex restoration, engine number 4270 will join up to seven other locomotives including three visitors from other railways for the ‘Cotswold Festival of Steam’.

The festival takes place on the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway (GWSR), which runs between Cheltenham Racecourse, Winchcombe, Toddington and Laverton, on Saturday to Monday.

Ian Crowder, GWSR member, said: “With up to eight engines in steam working to an intensive timetable and a host of other attractions at all our stations, the Cotswold Festival of Steam is an un-missable occasion for anyone interested in our railway heritage.”

Meanwhile, Batsford Arboretum will be highlighting the importance of water courses on Monday when Dreamshed Theatre returns for two performances of the Further Adventures of The Wind In The Willows.

Visitors can find out more about these important natural resources and have a look at some of the creatures that live in Batsford’s streams and ponds.

Shows take place at 12pm and 1.30pm with river-dipping between 11am and 3pm.

The annual French motoring festival ‘La Vie en Bleu’ (Life in Blue) is also taking place at the Prescott Hill Climb, near Winchcombe, on Saturday and Sunday, and will see many of its regular competitors plus some surprises.