Coniston, The Lake District

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Some top advice 😉

This was our third visit to the Park Coppice Caravan Club site at Coniston and it never loses its appeal for us.

http://www.caravanclub.co.uk/caravanclubapps/applications/uk-caravan-sites-and-parks/SiteDetails.aspx?csid=21956

This was our first motorhome destination in 2014 after buying Jolly.  Check out our two previous blog posts for info on what we got up to.

We were extremely lucky with the weather this time, having booked this jaunt several weeks ago and finding ourselves blessed with the best weekend weather of the last few weeks.  We arrived on site mid-afternoon and were soon pitched up and relaxing.  This is a large all year round site of 252 good-sized pitches set within woodland.  However, the site only has the top end pitches open out of season.

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Pitched up

We enjoyed a couple of hours taking in our surroundings in the sunshine with a brew or two and some nibbles, before climbing on our bikes and cycling the couple of miles into the hamlet of Torver.  The bridleway there is an old rail track which takes you safely away from the main road.  It is easy to blink and miss Torver as you pass through, but we recently discovered that Torver has an extensive history since its very earliest days when Vikings settled there and farmed the land.  Also, an interesting fact we discovered is that in 1954 the first major UFO sighting in Britain is recorded as taking place near Torver …

 

Ooooh!  Anyhow, hoax or no hoax, it is our tradition for the first evening at this site to have a few drinks and tea in Torver.  Previously, though, there has only been one choice of pub in the village – The Wilson’s Arms.

http://www.thewilsonsarms.co.uk/

… but this year we discovered that the Church House Inn, just across the road, has now reopened adding a little more variety.  We noted too, from chatting to another couple of motorhomers, that the Church House Inn provides 5 caravan/motorhome pitches to the rear with electric, shower & toilet facilities.  They hold regular live music nights, food nights and beer festivals at this pub so if this is your thing it’s worth checking out their website for upcoming events.

http://www.thechurchhouseinn.com/

Needless to say, we managed to fit both pubs in and enjoyed a few drinks, game of cards, and a hearty meal of fish and chips at the Wilson’s Arms before returning to Jolly to cabin up for the night.

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An impressive Torver sunset

Our next day was spent well wrapped up and cycling in and around Coniston, just taking in the fabulous scenery on a perfect winter’s day of sunshine and blue skies.  Suzie enjoyed some great photography too.  We meandered around and enjoyed a warming hot chocolate and cake at the Bluebird Cafe down by the boating centre at Coniston Water.  Yum!

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http://www.thebluebirdcafe.co.uk/index.html

We then decided to explore Tarn Hows which we hadn’t done on previous visits.  This is approx. a mile and a half away from the centre of Coniston.  It is an often quite steep wooded track up to the Tarn, which was made trickier for us as we pushed our bikes all the way up to the top car park!  That said, the rewarding views of the Tarn and the exhilarating downhill return journey by road more than made up for our earlier efforts.

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Tarn Hows is a popular visitor attraction and said to be the most photographed water in the Lake District.  It used to be three smaller ones called High, Middle and Low Tarn. Until in 1862, a dam was built to raise the level, and with other landscaping the Tarn we see today was created.  The Hows are the surrounding small, wooded hills.  The spot was once owned by Beatrix Potter who later passed it on to the National Trust for future safe-keeping.

We managed to capture some lovely photos of the amazing scenery encountered during our day:-

After all that exercise we were, understandably, quite thirsty(!) and cycled down into Coniston for a couple of well-earned pints of Bluebird Bitter by Coniston Brewing Co at the Black Bull Inn.  We then ate at The Ship Inn on the way back to camp.

https://www.robinsonsbrewery.com/shipinnconiston

We slept well that night 💤💤 after a perfect weekend.

Our next planned Jolly jaunt isn’t for a few weeks, unless we manage to cram a cheeky one in between, who knows!?

ONWARD!>>>>

Suzie & Bri

Horns Dam, Goosnargh, Lancashire

Whoop!  Our first trip of 2016 and we were ready for it.  We had a last minute change of plan for this trip, very last minute, just an hour before we were due to set off.  Anyway, to cut a long story short, we ended up at a real belter of a site just down the road in Goosnargh.  Also, after weeks of rain, wind, rain and more rain, we were blessed with 2 days of glorious winter weather, frosty with lots of sunshine.  It made for a really brilliant break.

We stayed at the Horns Dam, run by a lovely family who were friendly and attentive to the needs of visitors.  We pitched up on a spacious corner pitch (No.1) surrounded by fields and a lake.  Perfect.  We were grateful for Jolly’s warm air blown heating system throughout our stay!

http://www.thehornsdam.co.uk

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Countryside view from our pitch

Horns Dam is a Caravan Club CL site set in beautiful countryside, surrounded by 4 fishing lakes of differing sizes.  Fishing was the main purpose of this trip as we hadn’t really done much of it recently.

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Jolly, with built-in rod holder 😉

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We opted for a couple of pegs on the larger of the lakes, Horns Dam, and fished for about 5 hours.  We were hoping for a carp or two but they didn’t seem to be biting that day.  Instead, we caught 5 small roach & bream.  On leaving, we spoke with another angler who had had a similar catch.  It was an enjoyable and relaxing afternoon in tranquil surroundings.

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Waiting for a nibble … 🎣

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Relaxing way to spend the day

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Beautiful, tranquil surroundings

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View across the lake, with Jolly in the distance to the left of the bungalow

http://www.thehornsdam.co.uk/fisherey.html

In the evenings, we walked approx. 5-10 mins up to Ye Horns Inn, a traditional 1700s coaching inn. The Inn serves ales from its own microbrewery and was voted Pub of the Year for 2014 by CAMRA.  It features in the Good Pub and Good Beer Guides 2016.  This was certainly a busy little pub, even mid-week, and it was well worth booking to be sure of a table in the small dining area.

http://www.hornsinn.co.uk/

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The morning we left the site, a couple of the lakes were partially frozen after a heavy night frost.

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Freezing lake, brrr! ❄️

At last the proper winter weather is here!  In fact it’s snowing here at home as I write this blog post.

This will undoubtedly be a regular haunt for us from now on.  Loved it!

Our next fishing trip, though, is to a different location at the beginning of February.  So carp beware, we’re coming to get ya!  Until then …

ONWARD!>>>>

Suzie & Bri

 

A Christmassy Castleton, High Peak, Derbyshire

Castleton is described as one of the most beautiful villages in the Peak District, and it’s easy to see why.  From the quaint architecture to the unspoiled natural features surrounding the village, the whole place is pleasing to the eye.  The welcome from and interaction with locals here was very friendly and relaxed too, making it a place we will return to.

http://www.peakdistrictinformation.com/towns/castleton.php

* The Caravan Club recommend that you don’t use SatNav on the approach to the village and list on their website a recommended alternative route *

We approached from the west side of the village via Winnats Pass which was an impressive sight as the narrow, winding road passed through some spectacularly high limestone rock faces.  This road isn’t suitable for vehicles over 7.5 tonnes or towing caravans.

Driving through the towering limestone pinnacles of Winnats Pass

Driving through the towering limestone pinnacles of Winnats Pass

"Are we nearly there yet?"

“Are we nearly there yet?”

A rainy arrival into Castleton

A rainy arrival into Castleton

On our return journey we took the road out through the village of Hope in the opposite direction as you turn out of the club site.  This was due to foggy weather and although the route also took us high over the tops it was a wider road.

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A daunting drive through the fog on the way out of Hope Valley

A daunting drive through the fog on the way out of Hope Valley

For our 2 night stay, we pitched up at the Castleton Caravan Club Site, a 10-minute leisurely walk from the centre of the village.

Perfect weather for the site ducks 💦

Perfect weather for the site ducks 💦

The Caravan Club site reception trimmed up for Christmas

The Caravan Club site reception trimmed up for Christmas

Jolly pitched up on site

Jolly pitched up on site

This site is open all year round and we were surprised at how busy it was for the end of November.  That said, this is good walking country all year round and the village is also known for being particularly pretty at Christmas time with lights adorning the streets and the festivities drawing in visitors.

Festive charm in Castleton

Festive charm of Castleton

It’s a lovely time to visit.  There were still plenty of good size pitches to choose from and as the site is located just at the edge of the village there was no noise.

Wildlife on site

Wildlife on site

http://www.caravanclub.co.uk/caravanclubapps/applications/uk-caravan-sites-and-parks/SiteDetails.aspx?csid=21925

The ruins of Peveril Castle stand majestically overlooking Castleton at its foot.  The Norman Castle was built 1080-1086 for William Peverel, a favourite Knight of William The Conqueror (some rumours claiming he was his illegitimate son).  Unfortunately for us, visiting out of season, the Castle was only open to visitors at weekends.  Suzie was looking forward to the opportunity of some good photography from here, but still managed to capture a shot she was happy with of the Castle against a brooding moorland and sky.

The imposing Peveril Castle standing above the village

The imposing Peveril Castle standing above the village

As the Castle was closed we walked a little further on through the village.

The stream that runs the village was swollen following the recent rainfall

The stream that runs through the village was swollen following the recent rainfall

"Make sure you get my best side" 📸

“Make sure you get my best side” 📸

We walked up into the notorious Devil’s Arse … also known as Peak Cavern!  We had a very animated and entertaining tour guide who regaled us with stories of the ancient rope making works situated there in days gone by.  She was also very keen on talking quite dramatically about the cave flooding as it had done just the night before.  Bearing in mind the amount of rain that had fallen over the last few days, we were prepared for a sharp exit if the alarms started sounding!

Walk up to the entrance of Peak Cavern

Walk up to the entrance of Peak Cavern

Bri trying his hand at rope making. The hemp stinks!

Bri trying his hand at rope making. The hemp stank … quite apt I suppose, as we were in the Devil’s Arse 😉

There are around 4 show caves in the area.  Speedwell Cavern, an 18th century lead mine is worth checking out although we didn’t have time during this visit.

http://www.peakcavern.co.uk/

All this activity obviously led to quite a thirst which needed quenching.  Castleton apparently used to be overrun with ale houses, and even today there is no shortage.

We visited Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese Inn and Suzie enjoyed her first mulled wine of the season (followed by another … and I think another …).  This is the first pub you come to when walking from the site and is a traditional half-timbered 17th century coaching inn offering B&B.

http://www.cheshirecheeseinn.co.uk/

Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese Inn

Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese Inn

Just next door is the Peak Hotel, an independent pub which has recently been renovated and refurbished.

http://www.thepeakhotel.co.uk/peaksinn/index.html

Inside The Peak Hotel

Inside The Peak Hotel

The Peak Hotel is a gin lover's paradise. Lost count of the different varieties stocked behind the bar

The Peak Hotel is a gin lover’s paradise.  We’ve forgotten how many different varieties the landlady said she stocks

The Castle pub was definitely, in our opinion, the place to eat within the village itself.  We ate here on our last evening and were very pleased with the food and service.  If we’d known how exceptionally good it was we’d probably have eaten here both nights.  We can highly recommend this one.  Apparently the Poacher’s Arms, further out from the centre has a good reputation too but we didn’t visit this time.

http://www.vintageinn.co.uk/restaurants/midlands/thecastlecastleton

Top scran at The Castle. Yum.

Top scran at The Castle.  Yum.

The evening before we’d eaten at Ye Old Nag’s Head.  The food was fine but not of the same standard as The Castle.

http://www.yeoldenagshead.co.uk/

We also visited The George Hotel and The Bulls Head.  It was difficult not to, as they were all just a stone’s throw from one another.  Perfect! 🙂

http://www.georgehotelcastleton.co.uk/

http://www.bullsheadcastleton.co.uk/

This was another fun and memorable Jolly adventure.  The winter trips are every bit as enjoyable for us as the summer ones, there’s always something to do whatever the weather.  You really feel the changing of the seasons too when you’re adventuring throughout the year, and we think it gives us a bigger appreciation of it.

Well, another one down.  December is a busy month, so our next trip won’t be until Christmas time for Bri’s Boxing Day birthday, and it’ll be back over to Clitheroe and Waddington.  Not too long to wait.

ONWARD!>>>> 🎅🏻🎄

Suzie & Bri

The Marston’s Beer Festival, Uttoxeter Racecourse, Staffordshire

What a brilliant weekend we’ve just experienced at the Marston’s Beer Festival Race Day at Uttoxeter Racecourse in Staffordshire.

We stayed at the Uttoxeter Racecourse Caravan Club Site which is situated at the centre of the racecourse and is about a 20 minute walk from the centre of Uttoxeter.  Prior to our stay we noticed a lot of reviews criticising the facilities on this site as being tired and in need of upgrading.  We didn’t actually use the facilities though because, as is most often the case, we used our onboard facilities and were staying here purely to experience a day at the races.  Therefore, we were more than satisfied with our experience at this site which is just a 5-minute walk from pitch to racecourse, without having to negotiate any heavy traffic or crowds that race days bring.  Unfortunately, there are currently only a handful of hard standing pitches at this site and the rest are grass.  Although pitching up was fine, we needed the assistance of the site staff’s grip mats to get off after 2 days of quite heavy rain.  This wasn’t a problem, however, as they are clearly used to this service being required because they had the equipment readily to hand and were only too happy to help people.  A big thumbs up to the staff for that 👍

http://www.caravanclub.co.uk/caravanclubapps/applications/uk-caravan-sites-and-parks/SiteDetails.aspx?csid=22007

Sunshine on arrival as we approach the course

Sunshine on arrival as we approach the course

Entrance to the site and course

Entrance to the site and course

Caravan park

Caravan park

Pitched up, with course viewing stand in the distance

Pitched up, with race spectator stand in the distance

We booked this Jolly Adventure about 6 months ago for the purpose of celebrating Bri’s retirement after he completed just under 30 yrs managing his local LFRS fire station.  We had a ball and celebrated good-style!  Firstly, we booked a premier ticket (access all areas) and our own table for the day with a 4 course silver service meal in The Silks Restaurant.  We were not disappointed, and despite the typical November weather becoming wetter as the day went on, we were perfectly comfortable and warm in the restaurant, watching the live races on a big screen and placing bets from our table.  Before the weather changed we also got a good feel of the atmosphere on the outside spectator stand and Suzie got her first experience of placing a bet with the bookies outside (she looked a bit of a pro actually!).  We had a couple of very exciting wins – horses that brought us some luck included Hi Vic, Penn Lane and Call to Order.  We had a fantastic day out and would love to do it all again sometime.  Maybe Suzie needs to retire??

http://www.uttoxeter-racecourse.co.uk/whats-on/fixture/14-november-2015/

http://www.uttoxeter-racecourse.co.uk/

Walk across the course from site

Walk across the course from site

Walk to course from site

Walk to course from site

Hobgoblin mobile bar, part of the Marstons Beer Festival

Hobgoblin mobile bar, part of the Marston’s Beer Festival

Marston's horse box bar

Marston’s horse box bar

Vintage dray wagon

Vintage dray wagon (carrying Bri’s beer order for the day!)

Winner's enclose & parade ring before racing began

Winner’s enclose & parade ring before racing began

A winning ticket - hoorah! 🏇🏇🏇

A winning ticket – hoorah! 🏇🏇🏇

Celebration in Silks Restaurant

Celebration in Silks Restaurant 🍴🍷🍻

Happy semi-Retirement Bri! 😀

Happy well-earned semi-Retirement Bri! 😀

During our stay we also had an evening out in the market place area of Uttoxeter, where the 13th Century ‘Ye Old Talbot Pub’ still stands, and later enjoyed an authentic Indian meal at the Kohi Noor in town.

War memorial in Market Place, Uttoxeter

War memorial in Market Place, Uttoxeter

The Vault - a quirky little pub that put us both in mind of the sit-com 'Early Doors'

The Vault – a quirky little pub that put us both in mind of the sitcom ‘Early Doors’

A warm welcome at the 13th Century Old Talbot Inn

A warm welcome at the 13th Century Old Talbot Pub

The weather throughout this trip was mostly cold, wet and windy; a reminder that we’ll be needing our winter woollies for our trips over the coming months.  We have also ordered Jolly some Milenco Grip Mats which are not only good on wet grass, but are also effective in ice and snow.

Our next adventure at the end of the month will have a very festive feel as we approach the Christmas period, and if Bri’s good he might get to visit Santa’s Grotto … ho! ho! ho! 🎅🏻

ONWARD!>>>>

Suzie & Bri

Shrewsbury, Shropshire

Our most recent stay was at the Cranberry Moss Camping & Caravanning Club Site last week.  The site’s situated approx. 8 miles from Oswestry and 10 miles from Shrewsbury in the opposition direction.  Conveniently, there is a regular bus service (hourly to Oswestry and 2 hourly to Shrewsbury) with a bus stop right outside the site entrance.

http://www.campingandcaravanningclub.co.uk/campsites/uk/shropshire/oswestry/oswestry

As it was half-term week we were expecting the site to be full but on arrival we were pleasantly surprised to find a good choice of empty pitches.  The site staff were very welcoming and keen for us to find the right pitch for us, so much so that as we were only staying 2 nights, they offered us an area sectioned off for some planned work later in the week.  As a result, we had a beautiful, private, quiet top corner pitch area all to ourselves.  That’s certainly going the extra mile. Big thumbs up to that!

Excellent pitch! A private corner all to ourselves.

Excellent pitch! A private corner all to ourselves.

Friendly pheasant snapped to the rear of our pitch

Male pheasant wandering by the rear of our pitch

We were blessed again with only light rain during our stay, nothing that prevented us from getting out on the bikes and also exploring the nearby town of Shrewsbury.  We didn’t have time to visit Oswestry too, so will save that for a future visit.

http://www.oswestry-welshborders.org.uk/

So, we arrived on site mid-afternoon following a longer journey than planned due to several traffic hold ups.  We had our customary relaxation time on site before taking the bikes off and cycling (approx. 10 mins) to the nearby village of Nesscliffe.  Had we not had traffic hold ups and got there earlier we would have cycled around Nesscliffe Country Park where there is an iron age hill fort, quarries which supplied stone for some of Shropshire’s’ castles and churches, and a cave hewn into the sandstone, which it is claimed was the hideout of a medieval outlaw called Humphrey Kynaston, Shropshire’s answer to Robin Hood.  However, as the nights are drawing in earlier now this wasn’t really practical during this visit, but we will fit this in when we return to this lovely site and visit the town of Oswestry.

http://www.shropshire.gov.uk/outdoor-recreation/parks-and-countryside-sites/nesscliffe-and-the-cliffe-countryside-site/

We cycled for tea at The Old Three Pigeons in Nesscliffe, spending a relaxed evening sitting in a quiet corner playing cards and chatting with a fellow camper from the site before enjoying a good meal.  The Old Three Pigeons is an early 15th Century public house and it is claimed that it is haunted by Humphrey Kynaston …

http://www.3pigeons.co.uk/

The Old Three Pigeons, Nesscliffe

The Old Three Pigeons, Nesscliffe

A chilled out game of cards (Suzie won … again! 😉)

Good wine list and an extensive food menu

Good wine list and an extensive food menu

We spent the next full day visiting the local town of Shrewsbury, birthplace of Charles Darwin, catching the bus from site. On arrival into town you pass the striking ‘Quantum Leap’ sculpture which was unveiled in 2009 to mark Darwin’s bicentenary and in representation of his pioneering ideas and influence on science.

http://www.discoverdarwin.co.uk/quantum-leap/

There are lots of higgledy piggledy old streets and alleyways to explore in this interesting town around which the River Severn flows.  In better weather, a Sabrina boat trip along the river would be an enjoyable way of seeing some of the landmarks and hearing about the town’s history.

http://www.sabrinaboat.co.uk/

We were happy to meander around town, dodging raindrops as the showers came and went.  It’s advisable to pick up a map of the centre from the Tourist Information Centre, based inside the Music Hall within The Square. Or print one from this link –

http://visitshrewsburymap.co.uk/

Town centre

Town centre

Most of the town can be covered quite easily and at a leisurely pace without having to walk your socks off.  We stopped for lunch at The Quirky Coffee & Gift Shop at the top of Grope Lane (ooh err!).  We had a light bite which was fine and the coffee served there was excellent.  The young man serving was extremely chatty and full of enthusiasm re. the town’s history on which he seemed quite clued up.

Looking up from the bottom of Grope Lane, named either because people had to grope to find their way up or because it used to be a red light area. Our guess is probably the latter!

Looking up from the bottom of Grope Lane, apparently named either because people had to grope to find their way up in the dark or because it used to be a red light area. Our guess is … probably the latter!

Bear Steps, viewed from the window seat of the Quirky Coffee & Gift Shoo

Bear Steps, viewed from the window seat of the Quirky Coffee & Gift Shop

One of many old narrow passageways throughout the town

One of many old narrow passageways throughout the town

The autumnal colours added to the beauty of this historic town

The autumnal colours in the grounds of St Alkmund’s church added to the beauty of this historic town

The old buildings along Fish Street

The old buildings and St Julian’s church along Fish Street

Henry Tudor House. Built in the early 1400s, it was originally a collection of shops, houres and a brewing inn. Henry Tudor (aka Henry VII) sought refuge here on his way to the Battle of Bosworth,

Henry Tudor House. Built in the early 1400s, it was originally a collection of shops, houses and a brewing inn.  Henry Tudor (aka Henry VII) sought refuge here on his way to the Battle of Bosworth

Pictures of pop/rock stars in Tudor dress adorn the walls

Pictures of pop/rock stars in Tudor dress adorn the walls

St Chad’s Church, not far from the town centre, is worth visiting to see the grave of Ebenezer Scrooge which was placed there during an 80s filming of A Christmas Carol in the town.  When filming was finished the grave was just left there.

Ebenezer Scrooge's grave at St Chad's Church

Ebenezer Scrooge’s fictitious grave at St Chad’s Church

There really is plenty to occupy anyone in this town and we had a great time here, managing to catch the last bus back to site early evening.

This is a campsite and area of the country we fully intend to return to in the near future.

Until then, our next Jolly adventure will involve a dressed up day at the races with slap up meal and champagne.  Hopefully also a few lucky wins too! 🏇🏇🍴🍸.  Can’t wait.

ONWARD,>>>>

Suzie & Bri

 

Ulverston, South Lakes, Cumbria

We’ve just had a great adventure to Ulverston in Jolly.  It was thoroughly enjoyable from start to finish.  We knew we’d enjoy this break but it far exceeded our expectations.  The lovely town, friendly people, and no shortage of things to see and do really made for an excellent stay and we reckon we’ll be re-visiting time and again in the future for a regular fix.  We’ll also be sure to pay a visit at Christmas time one year for the town’s Dickensian Festival.

Driving into the Cumbria sunshine 🌞

Driving into the Cumbrian sunshine 🌞

Ulverston is a market town in the South Lakeland district of Cumbria, North West England.  It was previously located in Lancashire before changes to boundaries.   It is very much a festival town, attracting visitors from far and wide for a variety of festivals throughout the year.  Check out this link for the full list of events and details of the town’s history:-

http://visitulverston.com/

The reason for our visit was Suzie’s interest in the town’s link to Stan Laurel, of the legendary Laurel & Hardy comedy duo.  He was born Arthur Stanley Jefferson at his grandparents house in Ulverston on 16th June 1890, and spent the first 6 years of his life in the town before moving away.  We both remember watching the old black and white L&H films as children in the school holidays.  Shame they don’t still televise them, a whole generation are missing out these comedy legends …

… First things first though! We stayed at Bardsea Leisure Park on Priory Road, about a 25 minute walk/10 minute cycle from the town centre.  It’s the only caravan park we could find actually within Ulverston itself and it was perfectly adequate for our stay.

Arrival at site

Arrival at site

We used our onboard toilet/shower facilities so didn’t experience the site facilities.  There are touring pitches among residential caravans and seasonal pitches.  The park is also part of a caravan & motorhome sales business, and there was quite frequent use of empty touring pitches around us for the storage of caravans and motorhomes that were on sale.  It wasn’t the quietest of stays in the mornings, quite busy with vehicles to-ing and fro-ing, but it was fine for us as we were out and about for the majority of our stay and only really used the site for sleeping.  All the pitches were fully serviced with electric, water and waste points which was definitely a bonus.

http://www.bardsealeisure.co.uk/touring-pitches

View from our pitch

View from our pitch

Again, the weather was good.  The first day we sat out for a couple of hours in the warm sunshine, the second day was more overcast but still quite warm as we ventured around town.

We explored the area via pushbike. Initially we turned right out of the caravan park and followed Priory Road to the coastline with the plan of cycling along the coast road to the Bay Horse Hotel at the canal foot for an evening meal.  However, as our map didn’t cover this area it was only on reaching the coast that we realised the road didn’t link for cyclists so, after a detour, we headed back into the town centre for our first evening, but not before getting the camera out and capturing the stunning view.

A view along the coastline

A view along the coastline

On the way into town we passed Argyle Street, the birthplace of Stan Laurel and took some photos of his old house and the plaque that hangs on the wall.

We had a wander up the cobbled Market Street towards the Market Cross at the top.  The town has outdoor market stalls there on Thursdays and Saturdays and an indoor market in the market hall on New Market Street Monday-Saturday (not Wednesday).

It soon became apparent that there is no shortage of pubs, cafes and restaurants in Ulverston.  A comprehensive list of these can be found at this link:-

http://visitulverston.com/features/eating/

Looking up from the bottom of Market Street

Looking up from the bottom of Market Street

We decided to eat at The Farmers (previously The Farmers Arms) at the top of Market Street, but first we stopped off for a drink at the Hope & Anchor pub just around the corner.  This traditional pub serves a good range of cask and keg ales, and according to its website … “You will be guaranteed a quirky night of entertainment with local folk musicians some tasty nibbles and a strong desire to come back”.  This is SO true!  There’s a warm welcome with friendly banter and a very relaxed atmosphere.  We felt like locals within a few minutes!  We had a couple of drinks before our meal and were keen to return afterwards for a nightcap and to listen to a live jazz band before cycling back to camp.

No ghosts on this visit but obviously plenty of 'spirits' 😉

No ghosts on this visit but obviously plenty of ‘spirits’ 😉

The Farmers restaurant is known as THE place to eat in the area and we were suitably impressed.  It was a Thursday night and the restaurant was fully booked up till late.  We waited in the outside seating area for a while and got chatting to a friendly local who shared his local knowledge with us to help us make the most of our stay (thanks Colin! 👍).  Soon enough a table by the fire in the bar area became available so our patience paid off and we had an excellent meal and evening.  We’d recommend this place without hesitation but you’d be wise to book if you wanted to eat in the restaurant at a specific time, definitely so at weekends.

There’s no shortage of things to see and do in this town.  As time was limited though, rather than rush to fit everything in we took it slowly leaving plenty to do on our next visit.

The next day, as planned, we visited the Laurel & Hardy Museum

http://www.laurel-and-hardy.co.uk/index.php

We spent the whole afternoon there, it was amazing reading up on the story of L&H and viewing lots of memorabilia, including furniture from Stan’s childhood home, personal letters he wrote, and sitting in a small purpose-built cinema watching a number of clips which play all day through.  Fantastic!  Photography is allowed inside so Suzie snapped away:-

The Laurel & Hardy Museum is located on the ground floor of the Roxy Cinema

The Laurel & Hardy Museum is located on the ground floor of the Roxy Cinema

The furniture in this photo was from Stan's time in the house in Argyle Street and would have been familiar to Him.

The furniture in this photo was from Stan’s home in Argyle Street and would have been familiar to him

Bed from the house, It is believed that Stan was born in this bed

It is believed that Stan was born in this bed

Small cinema within the museum, showing back to back Laurel & Hardy clips

Small cinema within the museum, showing back to back Laurel & Hardy clips

Hat worn by Stan on their last tour of Britain in 1954

Hat worn by Stan on their last tour of Britain in 1954

Memento! 😜

Memento! 😜

After a fab few hours happily lost in the world of L&H we emerged back into the present day, and walked around the corner to Coronation Hall to see the statue that stands there.

Statue outside Coronation Hall in the town centre

Statue outside Coronation Hall in the town centre

We finished the afternoon off with a cream tea at Gillam’s on Market Street.  This cafe/shop was est’d in 1892 and is another link to the young Stan.  It was a sweet shop and he used to buy Beers Treacle Toffee here with his Grandmother.

Gillam's on Market Street

Gillam’s on Market Street

Afternoon tea.

Afternoon cream tea

We finished the day off with a bike ride through town and along the canal, which in itself has an interesting history.  It was built after Ulverston was declared a port town despite being situated over a mile away from the bay, necessitating this link to enable the transport of goods.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ulverston_Canal

Autumn feeding time

Autumn feeding time in the fields by the canal

It’s a pleasant ride along the towpath which brings you out at the Bay Horse Hotel at the canal foot.

Next visit we might dine there in the restaurant overlooking the bay.

http://www.thebayhorsehotel.co.uk

Canal towpath brings you to the Bay Horse Hotel

Canal towpath brings you to the Bay Horse Hotel

Suzie relaxing by the bay

Suzie relaxing by the bay

Sun setting

Sun setting

This time, however, we just had a drink or two before heading back to camp along the country roads before nightfall and chilling out with a meal back at Jolly.

Candlelit dinner for two back at Jolly 🍴🍷😊

Candlelit dinner for two back at Jolly 🍴🍷😊

Next time we’ll probably visit Conishead Priory and the Hoad monument which towers over the town.

Hoad monument

Hoad monument

Another top trip and only a couple of weeks until our next Jolly adventure to …… Oswestry.

ONWARD!>>>>

Suzie & Bri

Sunny Southport, Merseyside

Wow, we were truly blessed by the weather for our mid-week Jolly jaunt to Southport this week.  The sun shone from start to finish, and it felt as if we were miles from home rather than only an hour’s journey away.

Arriving into Southport, the pier in the distance

Arriving into Southport, the pier in the distance

Southport is a Victorian seaside town lying on the Irish Sea coast of North West England.  It has the second longest pier in the UK (the longest being Southend Pier), refurbished in 2002 at a cost of £7 million pounds it has a quite modern design with a cafe and Victorian-style penny arcades at the end.  Surprisingly, we didn’t actually visit the pier during this trip despite having fully intended to.  There were just too many other things to cram into a two-night break.  Great excuse for a re-visit though! 🙂

http://www.visitsouthport.com/

We stayed at the Caravan Club Site on the Esplanade along the coast.  It is a short walk into the centre of town from the site.  The site is very popular for visitors to the annual Southport Air Show, and we came home just before the weekend of this event during which the site is fully booked.   We pitched on the recently added phase of the site, which has increased the number of hard-standing pitches and provided an extra facilities block.  This work was completed earlier this year.  We booked a pitch with awning and were impressed by the pitch sizes which felt more spacious than other sites we have visited.  It is a very friendly, spacious, clean, and open site which we will definitely return to in the future.

http://www.caravanclub.co.uk/caravanclubapps/applications/uk-caravan-sites-and-parks/SiteDetails.aspx?csid=21981

We spent the afternoon of our arrival just relaxing in the sunshine on site.  It was very hot, and we had to make the most of what sunshine is left of this summer.

Taking time to enjoy the sunshine on site

Taking time to enjoy the sunshine on site

Despite the site being quite busy it was pleasantly very quiet.  We later walked into the town centre (approx. 15 mins) and visited a beer bar and bottle shop Bri had read about called The Tap & Bottles.  They have a wide range of cask and craft ales and offer homemade beer-tapas snacks for the hungry.  It’s a cosy place with a friendly and relaxed atmosphere.

The Tap & Bottles on Cambridge Walks in the town centre

The Tap & Bottles on Cambridge Walks in the town centre

Cosy interior

Cosy interior

Varied selection of cask and craft ales

Varied selection of cask and craft ales

We didn’t eat there, instead we opted to move on for a Turkish meal at the Havin Turkish Restaurant on Coronation Walk.  It was a Tuesday evening and so very quiet in town and we were the only customers in the restaurant.  The service was great and the food even more so.  We couldn’t fault it and would recommend a visit for something a little different if in the area.

http://www.havinrestaurant.co.uk/

Out on the town before a tasty Turkish meal

The day after our arrival we awoke to blazing sunshine and geared up ready for a 22.5 mile bike ride, a map of which is provided in the information room on site.  The ride takes you from site to part of the the Transpennine Trail: Cheshire Lines, then along part of the the Liverpool 20 trail to Lydiate.

Lydiate is approx. half way along the ride and a good place to stop for refreshments at either the Scotch Piper Inn or Hayloft cafe which are just a few yards apart from each other along the main road.  We opted to stop for a little liquid refreshment at the historic Scotch Piper Inn which is the oldest pub in Lancashire.  The thatched Grade 2 listed building dates from 1320, when it was originally known as “The Royal Oak”, and sections of the trunk of the oak tree around which it was built are visible from the tap room.

The Scotch Piper Inn at Lydiate. The oldest pub in Lancashire 🍻

The Scotch Piper Inn at Lydiate. The oldest pub in Lancashire 🍻

Interior of the Inn

For more on the history of the Inn and old photographs, check out this link:-

http://web.archive.org/web/20110629163337/http://www.fortunecity.com/millenium/ellerburn/53/

From this short pitstop we cycled on, passing over the Leeds-Liverpool Canal and a blustery 4-mile stretch over Plex Moss.  This stretch would be quite challenging on a windy day, as it was quite blustery on a calm day due to its wide open, exposed track.  We got our heads down though and pedalled through! 🚴🚴

Scenic cycle ride

Scenic cycle ride

Hay harvesting

Hay harvesting

Nice day for it 🌞

http://d5r9gdi4mky31.cloudfront.net/media/18005854/southport_cycling_route_map.pdf

Most of the afternoon was spent on the scenic cycle ride before tea at the Fisherman’s Rest on Weld Lane which is just around the corner from the campsite.

http://fishermens.rest/

We enjoyed delicious meals here, Bri opting for the slow cooked beef shin and Suzie for the Thai red fish curry.  We later headed to the front so that Suzie could catch a few sunset shots, although we’d left it a little late and only caught the last of the sunset!

Just in time for the last part of the sunset

Just in time for the last part of the sunset

Southport is so handy for us and we will return without hesitation, next time to the pier and more of the centre of Southport.

Our next Jolly adventure is to the town of Ulverston, South Cumbria, the birthplace of Stan Laurel, one half of Suzie’s favourite comedy duo, Laurel & Hardy.

Laurel & Hardy

Laurel & Hardy

ONWARD!>>>>

Suzie & Bri

The City of York

Our latest Jolly jaunt took us to the ancient walled city of York in North Yorkshire.  We have visited several times previously between us, and have already visited many sights and tourist attractions.  These include the impressive York Minster, Jorvik Viking Centre which is built on the site of an ancient viking settlement, and the actor-led, interactive York Dungeon.  All are worth a visit in our opinion.  Our last trip to York had been a B&B stay in freakishly hot March weather a few years ago.  We took a boat ride along the River Ouse and it had felt like the height of summer.

As you can imagine, York is steeped in history and definitely worth reading up on prior to visiting in order to get the most out of your stay.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/York

http://www.visityork.org/

En route to York

Scenic route to York

This was our first visit to York in Jolly, and we stayed at the Rowntree Caravan Club Site, approx. 15 minutes walk from the centre of York.

Entract to York Rowntree Caravan Club Site

Entrance to York Rowntree Caravan Club Site

Arrival on site

Arrival on site

We had heard previously that this can be a difficult site to book onto due to its popularity.  Therefore, we booked this trip early in the year and there were very few dates left even then but we managed to squeeze a stay in.  It’s well worth regularly checking the site though, as there are often cancellations.  We spoke to a couple of caravanners on the pitch beside us and they had booked last minute in this way.

The site is ideally situated on the banks of the River Ouse, providing pleasant strolls from the entrance.  Unfortunately, this also means that the site is prone to flooding which is apparent as soon as you arrive and see the reception & facilities building high up on stilts!  There are 3 grinding wheels outside the reception which are remains of the old Rowntree chocolate factory that used to be based where the site now is.  Previous years’ flood water levels are shown on here.  Thankfully, despite considerable rain, there were no flood sirens and early morning wake-ups requiring us to flee during our stay! 🙂

To the rear of the site is a 5 minute walk into a nice area of the city which offers a supermarket & a varied choice of restaurants (eat-in or take-out).  This is very handy in bad weather and we made use of a take-out one night after a late return from a cycle ride when the rain had set in and it seemed a more appealing proposition for the evening than to venture out and traipse around town getting soaked.  Staying on site is sometimes good wind down time when you’ve been on the go.  We felt the benefit of this, enjoying our meal beneath the wind out awning before deciding to cabin up in Jolly when it became quite chilly outside.

During our stay, one day when the rain held off until evening, we decided to ‘Cycle the Solar System’, an approx. 13 mile return journey along the old East Coast main-line railway. The ride begins not far from the site entrance, and the directions/information leaflet can be picked up from reception.  This ride gave us the opportunity not only for some good exercise, but to take in a couple of detours through surrounding villages along the way, such as Naburn, Bishopthorpe and Riccall.

https://www.york.ac.uk/solar/

Map of Solar System Trail

Map of the Solar System Trail

Millennium Bridge which you pass under on the way to the cycle trail

Millennium Bridge which you pass under on the way to the cycle trail

Passing the old Terry's chocolate factory

Passing the old Terry’s chocolate factory

Part of the trail crosses Chester racecourse

Part of the trail crosses York racecourse

The Fisher of Dreams (man or woman) with bike and dog, sitting on Naburn Bridge along the cycle trail

The Fisher of Dreams (man or woman) with bike and dog, sitting on Naburn Bridge along the cycle trail

Bri on Naburn Bridge

Bri on Naburn Bridge

We only spent a little time in the centre during this stay, dining and a few drinks in a couple of the older pubs and in the Shambles area.  We also grabbed a moment to visit the infamous Dick Turpin’s grave in St George’s graveyard.

The grave of Dick Turpin (John Palmer)

Dick Turpin’s (John Palmer) headstone

Dick Turpin’s grave

The time just seems to fly on our two-night Jolly jaunts.  We took a few pics along the way:-

History all around you as you pass through York

Historic York

Clifford’s Tower, the largest remaining part of York Castle. http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/cliffords-tower-york

On our first evening, we enjoyed a tasty meal at Wilde’s Wine Bar & Bistro. http://www.wildeswinebar.co.uk/

The Three Tuns Inn, a tourist destination in it's own right http://www.visityork.org/thedms.aspx?dms=3&GroupId=3&venue=1506384#

The 300 year old Three Tuns Inn, a tourist destination in it’s own right
http://www.visityork.org/thedms.aspx?dms=3&GroupId=3&venue=1506384#

History of the Three Tuns Inn

History of the Three Tuns Inn

The Golden Fleece, claiming to be the oldest and most haunted premises in York … http://www.thegoldenfleeceyork.co.uk/

History of The Golden Fleece

History of The Golden Fleece

Cosy and beautifully lit inside. We didn't see any ghosts during this visit ...

Cosy and beautifully lit inside. We didn’t see any ghosts during this visit …

The Shrine of Margaret Clitherow, a sacred site in the Shambles, a small medieval house believed to have been the home of Margaret Clitherow - a 16th Century Catholic martyr. She was knighted in 1970 by Pope Paul VI who called her

The Shrine of Margaret Clitherow, a sacred site in the Shambles, a small medieval house believed to have been the home of Margaret Clitherow – a 16th Century Catholic martyr. She was knighted in 1970 by Pope Paul VI who called her “The Pearl of York”
http://www.sacred-destinations.com/england/york-margaret-clitherow-shrine

 

We had a strange encounter on the way back to camp, while walking by a roundabout.  An old double decker bus hurtled around the bend causing an old hand bell to fly from the door and practically drop at our feet.  It happened quickly, no idea which bus company it was. so we thought it’d make a nice memento of our trip.  Let us know if it looks familiar to you, you know, if it rings a bell … (sorry!).

Our interesting souvenir handbell which we'll keep on Jolly.

Our interesting souvenir handbell which we’ll keep on Jolly.

 

Route back to camp

Route back to camp

Night walk by the River Ouse

Night walk by the River Ouse

A welcome return to Jolly after a busy day/night

A welcome return to Jolly after a busy day/night

Another fun trip.  Next time we plan to spend more time in the centre of York itself .. whenever that will be.  Watch this space!

ONWARD!>>>>

Suzie & Bri

Bakewell, Peak District, Derbyshire

Our latest Jolly adventure took us back to the Peak District area, this time to Bakewell.

Beautiful weather and scenery en route to Bakwell

Beautiful weather and scenery en route to Bakewell

Perfect travelling weather. ONWARD!>>>>

Perfect travelling weather.
ONWARD!>>>>  🚐

The sun was shining on Jolly

The sun was shining on Jolly 😎

The journey was longer than planned, due to delays caused by roadworks in towns we passed through.  We were clock watching as we’d booked the Thornbridge Brewery Tour for 3pm and arrived with very little time to spare after pitching up, etc.  We shot off into town on our bikes and managed to make the majority of the tour so we were happy bunnies.  It was an interesting tour, we learned about the growth of the brewery, the brewing process, and sampled a couple of beers (Jaipur, Bayern & ‘I love you will you marry me’).  We were given a Thornbridge beer glass each too, so they’ll no doubt be well used on our future Jolly journeys.  It’s well worth a visit to both the brewery and the well stocked shop, which are located on the Riverside Business Park half way between the Greenhills Holiday Park we stayed at and Bakewell town centre.

http://www.thornbridgebrewery.co.uk/index.php

Thornbridge Riverside Brewery, Bakewell

Thornbridge Riverside Brewery

The campsite was approx. a mile and a quarter outside the town centre.  It was obviously full at this time of year and in the school holidays, but although quite crowded it wasn’t too noisy.  There is a site bar and shop, and the facilities were adequate, although we didn’t use them as we were off-site the majority of the time and used our onboard facilities when back at base.

http://www.greenhillsholidaypark.co.uk/

The first evening we prepared to sit out beneath a cloudless sky as Suzie was keen to watch the Perseid Meteor Shower. Conditions were perfect.  Unfortunately we were both so tired we couldn’t stay awake til the early hours ended up going to bed!  Fortunately, we had seen a small display of the shower the night before from our garden at home so we didn’t completely miss out on this amazing sight.

Sunset on site

Sunset on site

Pitched up and ready for the Perseid Meteor Shower display ... shortly before Zzzz ...

Pitched up and ready for the Perseid Meteor Shower display … shortly before 😴

Bakewell is a picturesque town with quaint courtyards, shops and cafés.  It’s situated by the River Wye, and is apparently the only market town within the Peak District National Park boundary.  The first day we were there (Wednesday) it was heaving with traffic and pedestrians, but the next day was much quieter and so easier to explore.

Looking a little at the history of Bakewell, it derived its name from ‘Badeca’s well’,  and almost became a spa town but for the coolness of its springs which were unable to match the warmer temperatures of neighbouring Buxton.   The Bath House, built by the Duke of Rutland in 1697, still stands and retains the original bath in the cellar.  It’s probably fair to say, however, that Bakewell is now best known for a confection that came into being in the 19th century when a cook at the Rutland Arms (in the town centre) was supposed to be baking a jam tart but misunderstood the recipe … and, hey presto, the Bakewell Pudding was created!  It seemed only right that we sampled this culinary delight which is an absolute taste sensation!  We brought plenty back with us for family/work colleagues too.  We called into both The Bakewell Pudding Factory and The Old Original Bakewell Pudding Shop for these.

The Bakwell Pudding Factory

The Bakewell Pudding Factory

The Old Original Bakewell Pudding Shop

The Old Original Bakewell Pudding Shop

IMG_7743

A famous Bakewell Pudding

The famous Bakewell Pudding

We spent our second day cycling approx. 24 miles around the local area, which included taking in a return journey along the Monsal Trail.  This is a free public trail for walkers, cyclists and horse riders and was clearly popular with all age groups.  There is cycle hire available if needed, at both the Hassop Station and Blackwell Mill parts of the trail.  It was formerly part of the Midland Railway’s route between Manchester and London and, after being closed for over 40 years, was re-opened following a £2-million restoration scheme.  The trail stretches 8.5 miles between Bakewell and Blackwell Junction near Buxton.  Tunnels, blocked up since the 1960’s have been re-opened, lighting installed and the route resurfaced.  The trail also takes you over impressive viaducts high above the River Wye.  We had been forecast rain but luckily this held off and it was a great afternoon of exercise and sight-seeing.  We loved it.  Very impressive.

Map of the Monsal Trail

Map of the Monsal Trail 🚴

Start of the Monsal Trail at Bakewell

Start of the Monsal Trail at Bakewell

The Old Bakewell Railway Station

The Old Bakewell Railway Station

Hassop Station

Hassop Station

The old Hassop Station, now a cafe along the trail

The old Hassop Station, now a cafe along the trail

Monsal Dale

Monsal Dale

Entrance to the Monsal Head Tunnel along the Monsal Trail

Entrance to the Monsal Head Tunnel along the Monsal Trail

Bri aka Speedy Gonzales leading us through the tunnel

Bri aka Speedy Gonzales leading us through the tunnel

Bri looking down from the Monsal Head Viaduct

Bri looking down from the Monsal Head Viaduct

Some more views from the viaduct and trail:-

FullSizeRender

Needless to say, after a whole day of cycling, we’d worked up quite an appetite and thirst.  Bakewell has a good choice of pubs and cafes.  Each one we called in at had its own charm and atmosphere, except for The Wheatsheaf, which was sadly lacking anything positive.  Not sure whether it’s in the process of a refurb or always like that.  It was empty too which says a lot.

We decided on a curry for tea and my word what a great little place we found.  The Urban Spoon, Indian Street Kitchen, ticked all the right boxes.  It was a different and exciting menu, the food cooked to perfection.  It is an unlicensed premise so if you want to drink you need to take your own.  We were happy with a couple of tasty mango lassis instead as we’d already sampled a couple of drinks beforehand.

http://urbanspoononline.co.uk/

Full to the brim after a great day, we then cycled back (uphill mostly) to camp to cabin up for the night.

A brilliant couple of days.   Big thumbs up to Bakewell 👍

Our next adventure is to the York Rowntree Caravan Club Site which in the past has been difficult to get booked onto, so we’re looking forward to this one.

ONWARD!>>>>

Suzie & Bri

Barnard Castle, County Durham

The Caravan Club Site at Barnard Castle, County Durham in North East England was an absolute dream of a stay  after our previous stay at Appletreewick.  Nuff said!  This site is in a great location just approx.15 minutes walk into the town centre either via a woodland path or a busy road with a safe walkway along the grass verge.  It was peaceful and spacious on site, with good facilities, and we were surrounded by many friendly and chatty fellow campers.

Pitched up at Barnard Castle

Pitched up at Barnard Castle

We were welcomed with slight drizzle for most of the first day so had a walk into Barnard Castle that afternoon/evening. We took the woodland path there and the main road back afterwards due to a little mud slide over part of the woodland path following previous heavy rain, which could’ve been precarious in bad light.

Barnard Castle, or “Barney” to the locals, is a market town that stands on the River Tees and is steeped in history.

http://barnardcastlelife.co.uk/

Once at the bottom of the road via path or road, you walk over a footbridge and are rewarded with a beautiful view of Barnard Castle.  It looked particularly impressive beneath a brooding sky that evening.

Welcome to Barnard Castle

Welcome to Barnard Castle

Barnard Castle - built 1125 by Bernard de Balliol  (Bernard's Castle from which the town derived its name)

Barnard Castle – built 1125 by Bernard de Balliol (Bernard’s Castle from which the town derived its name)

Barnard's Castle

Barnard’s Castle

The weir on the River Tees

The weir on the River Tees

The Weir

The Weir information sign

During our stay we had a good meander through the town and attempted a cycle ride (unfortunately without preparing first!) which led us along the river bank and turned into an endurance test along an often very narrow riverside banking with a steep climb at the end with our bikes to get back up to civilisation.  It was fun though and we worked off MANY calories allowing us to order a fantastic curry from Spice Island on market place in the town centre which we enjoyed back at Jolly. Truly delicious food and ridiculously generous portions!  We also tried a couple of the local pubs during out stay – The Turks Head, The Three Horseshoes (good food), and the town’s oldest pub The Golden Lion where we spent a couple of hours enjoying the choice of ales and chatting to a friendly geordie couple.

http://www.spiceislandrestaurant.co.uk/

Another place worth visiting in this area is Bowes Museum, if art is your thing.  We didn’t go on this occasion, instead choosing to be out and about on foot and bike most of the time but who knows, maybe next time …

http://www.thebowesmuseum.org.uk/

Bri outside the Old Butter Mart in the town centre. Built in 1747 and previously used as a dairy market, fire station, court house and lock up

Bri outside the Old Butter Mart in the town centre.
Built in 1747 and previously used as a dairy market, fire station, court house and lock up

Keep an eye out for the many blue plaques adorning the town's buildings, including this one where Charles Dickens once stayed

Keep an eye out for the many blue plaques adorning the town’s buildings, including this one on a building on the main street opposite The Turks Head pub

Town centre

Town centre

This picture hangs in the Turks Head pub and we are convinced it proves Sir Ian McKellen has lived before!

This picture hangs in the Turks Head pub and we are convinced it proves Sir Ian McKellen has lived before!

A good first little trip to the North East area for us and somewhere we will gladly return to in the future.

Our next adventure is to Ripley in Yorkshire as we have a Segway experience booked at Ripley Castle so we’re going to make a trip of it.  It’s reported to be one of the most picturesque villages in Yorkshire so we look forward to seeing it.

ONWARD!>>>>

Suzie & Bri