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Herefordshire & Worcestershire

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Issue 10 - 2012

Historic Houses | Festivals | Town Guides Environment & Transport | Gardens | Attractions | Tourist Attractions

www.countysignpost.co.uk


A wonderful way to spend a day! Take an atmospheric steam train journey along the beautiful Severn Valley.

KIDDERMINSTER • BEWDLEY • BRIDGNORTH Please check our website for operating dates and times.

Advance tickets, usually at reduced prices, available at:

www.svr.co.uk

or call: 01299 403816 Mon-Fri 9.30am - 4.30pm The Railway Station, Bewdley, Worcs DY12 1BG


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CONTENTS Historic buildings Gardens

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Welcome to the 2012 edition of Herefordshire & Worcestershire Signpost, your indispensable guide to the best tourist attractions and days out the county has to offer. We hope that you find our guide, a pleasure to read, both interesting and informative, and that you will take it away with you, to use again and again.

Festivals & Shows

We offer a taster of the visitor attractions and events within the County, for both locals and those who wish to visit from afar.

Museums

We are always interested to receive your comments and suggestions for future features - please contact the editor at the email address below.

Attractions For a free download please visit our new map-driven, online magazine website

www.countysignpost.co.uk Published by: County Signpost Ltd Editor: Adam Davison

All material in this magazine is, as far as we are aware, correct at the time of printing. County Signpost Ltd does not accept any responsibility for errors or inaccuracies which slipped through. Copyright County Signpost Ltd 2012. No part of this magazine may be used or reproduced without the written permission of the publisher.

Please mention Signpost when visiting any of the attractions.

County Signpost Ltd 01743 874098 info@countysignpost.co.uk

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NATIONAL TRUST Experience the delights of Herefordshire and Worcestershire on a journey of discovery with the National Trust.

From magnificent homes set in extensive parkland, to peaceful walled gardens and beautiful open countryside, there is something for everyone to enjoy.

For more great value days out, ask our visitor reception teams about National Trust membership, which gives free entry and parking at more than 300 historic houses and gardens.

Berrington Hall, near Leominster Berrington Hall is a feast for the senses as visitors discover and experience life both above and below stairs. The Georgian mansion set in acres of ‘Capability’ Brown parkland, contains beautiful

interiors and exquisite painted ceilings by Biaggio Rebecca and French Regency furniture, fine tapestries and carpets.

Barriers have been removed in some special rooms allowing visitors to fully explore the interiors and items on display. Upstairs the Corner Bedroom and Dressing Room is dressed for the celebration of 1891 when the then owners, Lord and Lady Rodney, returned from their honeymoon.

Visitors are invited to imagine the young Lady Rodney rushing to get changed to meet the tenants cheering outside the windows. They can also sit at her dressing table, see her wedding dress, read that day’s newspaper and view the photographs.

The atmospheric Oval Sitting Room focuses on the First World War and the tragic story which befell former Berrington owners the Cawley family.

Berrington Hall, copyright The National Trust / Gareth Gwilt

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Croft Castle, copyright The National Trust / Derek Wilbraham

Beneath the house, in the servants’ quarters, the Butler’s Bedroom is open to the public for the first time, complete with his personal possessions, a glowing fire and a cup of tea, as though he’s just stepped out of the room. Other ‘below stairs’ areas of the mansion include the Butler’s Pantry, Victorian laundry, Georgian dairy and back stairs, which provide an insight into the lives of the servants.

Outside there is plenty to see and do, including a children’s trail, play area and varied activities during the year. There’s also miles of parkland walks to explore.

For admission prices, event details or any further information please call 01568 615721.

Event highlights for 2012 Spring flower weekends: 28 January 26 February 2012. Red Cross Great Spring Gardening Event: 25 April 2012 from 10:30am

Croft Castle & Parkland, near Leominster

Just over five miles away, at Croft Castle and Parkland, visitors will get to uncover 1,000 years of history. The castellated country house has family connections dating back to the Norman Conquest.

Family portraits adorn the walls alongside superb Gothic decoration from the 18th century, including exceptional ceilings, paintings and furniture. In the Saloon, the scene is set for an evening in the 1920’s. Visitors can have a go at the Charleston, learn about cocktails and discover how the Croft family bought the castle back after it being out of the family for 177 years. In the Ambassadors Room it is 1818 and visitors learn of the sad news of the death of Sir Richard Croft, whose family once lived at the castle and gave their name to it.

There is a beautiful restored walled garden and miles of walks through the parkland to explore. Visitors can also venture further and discover

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the Iron Age hill fort at nearby Croft Ambrey. Families can enjoy trails around the castle and park; and children can get their hands on history in the family activity room, which includes dressing up. The Castle themed play area is a huge attraction for little visitors.

For admission prices, opening times and more information, call 01568 780246. Don’t miss the Medieval Weekend on the 11 & 12 August. Bring the family along to see living history camps and reenactments and let the children learn how to battle. Enjoy great savings on entry with a joint ticket for both Berrington Hall and Croft Castle and Parkland.

Brockhampton Estate, near Bromyard

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The Brockhampton Estate combines the essence of Herefordshire in a 1,700-acre estate. The site, which includes farmland, woodland and traditional orchards, was given to the National Trust in 1946 by Colonel John Talbot Lutley. At the heart of the property is Lower Brockhampton, a delightful 14th century moated manor house, which is approached through a timber-framed gatehouse. The views across the estate are simply stunning and include the Clee Hills, Birmingham, the Cotswolds, Malvern Hills and the Brecon Beacons.

There are a range of way-marked paths through park and woodland for visitors to explore, including an orienteering course and a newly opened path between the estate car park and Lower Brockhampton. There is also a Nature Trail, including den building and an outdoor natural play area for the whole family to enjoy.

Brockhampton, copyright The National Trust / Derek Wilbraham


The Weir Garden, copyright The National Trust / Derek Wilbraham

Visitors can experience a wide range of events throughout the year, from seasonal guided walks to butterfly hunts, trails and historical reenactments for younger visitors.

The shop at Lower Brockhampton offers an excellent selection of local crafts and produce, including the Brockhampton range of jams, preserves and honey. Delicious local produce can be enjoyed in the Old Apple Store tea-room, including home-made cakes and freshly made sandwiches.

Brockhampton Estate is open to visitors all year round. Walks leaflets can be obtained on arrival at the kiosk, from the tearoom and from Lower Brockhampton .

For admission prices, opening times and more information, call 01885 482077. Event highlights for 2012 include

31 March, 11am – 1pm. Den building and bow and arrow making on the Nature Trail at Lower Brockhampton. Child £3. 6 May, 2pm – 4pm. Spring orchard ramble with the ranger to see the blossom on the fruit trees.

Adult £3 23 & 24 June, 12 – 10pm & 12 – 5pm. Beer and brewing at Brockhampton to celebrate the best of local micro-brewing. Adult £3.50 after 5pm Saturday. 19 August, 11am – 4pm. Elizabethan Times at Lower Brockhampton with music, dance and costume from re-enactors Gloriana. 1 – 14 September, 11am – 4pm. All things damson celebrating damson season at Brockhampton. 6 & 7 October, Fungal Foray with Sheila Spence from Marches Fungi. Adult £5/Child £2.50. Booking essential on 01885 482077. 24 & 25 November, Medieval Christmas at Brockhampton showcasing festive activities of the period.

The Weir, near Hereford The Weir is a charming 1920s informal garden that reflects the style of planting of that unique era.

Overlooking a bend of the River Wye, the garden was lovingly designed by Roger Parr, a retired stockbroker, who had purchased the

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estate to enjoy the salmon fishing along the river. It was passed to the National Trust in the 1950s. There are changing colours throughout the seasons and the garden is renowned for its wide variety of spring bulbs, including snowdrops, daffodils, chionodoxa, scilla and bluebells.

The garden contains some interesting Roman archaeology, including the largest standing piece of Roman masonry in Herefordshire and Worcestershire and an octagonal Roman well or Nymphia.

Work has been undertaken to conserve the Walled Garden. Inside the garden walls, visitors will see a mix of both herbaceous borders and vegetables including onions, beans, beetroot and carrots; all of which provide the tea-room at Croft Castle and Parkland, near Leominster. The herbaceous border is brimming with Angelicas, Loveage, Inula and Sweet Peas.

For admission prices, opening times and more information, call 01981 590509.

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Cwmmau Farmhouse, copyright The National Trust

Event highlights for 2012 include a Marvellous Monarchs Trail from 2 to 10 June.

Cwmmau Farmhouse, Brilley, Whitney on Wye The unique Cwmmau Farmhouse is a fine example of Herefordshire’s rural history. This 17th century black and white timber-framed farmhouse is open to the public on four weekends during the year. For the remainder of the year it is run as a National Trust holiday cottage.

Cwmmau was built as a hunting lodge during the 1620s by Philip Holman, who went on to become High Sheriff of Herefordshire. In 1700 its role as a farm began to develop and continued for more than 200 years. The estate was left to the National Trust in 1964.

The farmhouse shows the development of an estate from the 17th century to the present day. The rooms are little altered from the original


construction and it retains all its character and charm, with many early features still in place, such as the double bread ovens and washing coppers in the kitchen.

For admission prices, opening times and more information, call 01981 590509.

Hanbury Hall and Gardens, near Droitwich Spa

house in recent years. Hanbury contains magnificent ceiling and staircase wall paintings by Sir James Thornhill, a masterpainter made famous for his work on the dome at St Paul’s Cathedral.

Visitors are welcome to sit on chairs in the Entrance Hall, Sitting Room and Dining Room – evoking a homely atmosphere. In the Drawing Room, one of the earliest Axminster carpets, is on display. Upstairs discover the Blue Bedroom and the Hercules Rooms which are fully restored.

Hanbury Hall, copyright The National Trust / Derek Wilbraham

Hanbury Hall is a fine country house surrounded by beautiful gardens and parkland.

Built in a warm local red brick in 1701, this William and Mary-style house is set in 20-acres of beautifully restored formal gardens and 395acres of parkland partly designed by George London.

Inside the house visitors can explore the family rooms and find out about the colourful history of the Vernon family, who owned Hanbury Hall for over 250 years. They can also discover more about the restoration that has taken place in the

Outside visitors can stroll through the 20-acre garden and enjoy the parterre, orchards, orangery, mushroom house and icehouse. During the summer months, visitors can try their hand at a game of bowls on the 18th century bowling green. Further afield, miles of footpaths can be explored, linking the estate to the nearby canals and Hanbury Church. A tasty range of local produce can be enjoyed in the tea-room, which serves hot meals and lunches, as well as lighter snacks in the Stables Kiosk.

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Hanbury is very popular with families and offers a busy programme of events including family activity days every Tuesday and Thursday during the school holidays. Young visitors will also enjoy exploring the children’s play area and people of all ages can try their hand at playing bowls on the recreated 18th century crown bowling green.

For admission prices, opening times and more information, call 01527 821214. Event highlights for 2012 include:

Around the world in five generations – coming home to Hanbury Hall… For 2012 Hanbury Hall and Gardens is celebrating the different countries which the five key generations of the Vernon family visited or were inspired by. There will be themed food in the tea-room and information about those family members’ experiences plus special event weekends: March – London - Thomas Vernon May – China – Bowater Vernon June – Italy - Sir Harry & Lady Georgina Vernon September – Portugal – Emma Vernon October – Argentina – Sir George Vernon

Croome, south of Worcester Explore the ever changing splendour of Croome, a place with so many fascinating stories to discover from the 17th century right up to the 21st. The serene lakeside garden, with its sumptuous shrubberies, miles of winding paths, enchanting temples, bridges and statues make Croome the perfect place to relax with family and friends, or let the children run off steam.

Step into the family friendly mansion house at the heart of the parkland, Croome Court, to discover its chequered past and evocative spaces that have been home to a diverse range of characters and communities over 400 years.

Together, as a complete work of art, Croome's landscape, parkland and house are of international importance as they standing at the very beginning of the careers of landscape designer Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown and Robert Adam in the mid 18th century.

This year visitors can discover the newly opened Home Shrubbery, the recently restored Rotunda folly and escape to the eye-catcher follies to see Croome from a different perspective. There’s a

Croome Park, copyright The National Trust / Andrew Butler

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lively programme of year round events and there’s the chance to watch birds and bats roosting via an interactive ‘bat-cam’.

The visitor centre has a 1940s-style restaurant or there’s the chance to enjoy an indulgent experience at the Tapestry Room tea-room inside Croome Court. A new shop contains plenty of great gift ideas with an increasing range of local products.

For admission prices, opening times and more information, call, call 01905 371006.

Event highlights for 2012 include: 12 May - Opera on the Lawn 1 June - Jubilee Elgar Festival 3 June - Big Jubilee Lunch 4-5 June - Activity Days - Jubilee Celebrations! 7-8 July - 1940s Croome 1-2 September - Croome Hare Krishna Festival 31 October - Activity Day Halloween 14 November - Lecture Lunch The Story of RAF December - Christmas at Croome

people used to live in it. Visitors can see how each room was designed for a specific use and can also explore the traditional vegetable garden, which is in the final stages of being converted to an organic status, and orchards which have been restored to reflect the way the Chartists lived.

Rosedene is open on the first weekend of every month throughout the year and for the rest of the time is available as a National Trust holiday cottage.

Admission to Rosedene is by pre-booked guided tours only. To book places or for further details, please contact the property office at Hanbury Hall on 01527 821214.

Rosedene, Dodford

A few miles away from Hanbury Hall is a slice of British social and economic history at Rosedene.

The cottage in Dodford was built as part of the Chartist movement, which campaigned for social and economic reform in the mid 1800s. One of the initiatives of the Chartist movement was to settle ordinary workers on smallholdings so they could be self-sufficient and would be entitled to vote.

Volunteer guides offer an insight into the cottage’s history and how

Rosesdene, copyright The National Trust / Robert Morris

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HAMPTON COURT

August 26th-27th Six Horse Stampede Jumping Show and Stunt Riding Exhibition each day (cover charge)

Hampton Court is a 'gem of a find' and one of England's 'best kept secrets'. The Medieval Castle, now open to the public, dates back over 600 years to Henry IV and the 12 acres of beautiful gardens and parkland are world renowned. The Orangery restaurant serves home produced delicious lunches and teas and the atmosphere is relaxed.

Main events 2012

April 6th –15th Children's Ten Day Jamboree with Fiery Jack's Circus Skills and Ferret Racing!

Eggomania hunt with Sharon, crafts and games

May 5th-7th Medieval Tented Village, Knights Tournament, Flying Spectacular Birds of Prey each day.

26th-27th Aztec Great Family Activities Weekend June 2nd-4th Hampton Court Jubilee Garden Show 5th Mad Hatter's Fancy Dress Tea Party

24th Horse Gymkhana Family Day Out

July 14th-15th Design for Living Show

29th Hereford Big Band Olympic Sound

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September 15th-16th Battle of Mortimer's Cross – famous annual re-enactment

Chapter House Open Air Theatre June 22nd Romeo and Juliet 7.30 July 31st Sleeping Beauty 6.30 September 2nd Pride and Prejudice 7.30

Every Wednesday & Thursday from July 25th Exotic Animal Encounters with Trevor Hill

Every Friday from July 27th Aztec Family Activities on Water/Land, paddle boats, wall climbing and many more skills.

Please see the website for opening times and prices : www.hamptoncourt.org.uk Telephone 01568 797777 Hope under Dinmore, Leominster HR6 0pn


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ENGLISH HERITAGE

Witley Court and Gardens The vast and rambling remains of the palatial 19th century mansion are surrounded by magnificent landscaped gardens, which still contain huge stone fountains. The largest, representing Perseus and Andromeda - now restored - was described as making the 'noise of an express train' when fired.

Before 1846, when William Humble Ward (later first Earl of Dudley) inherited Witley Court, the land surrounding the house was laid out in the 18th century English landscape style. As part of Ward's transformation of the estate, he called in the leading landscape designer of the time, William Andrews Nesfield, whose skills in designing intricate and elegant parterres were complemented by his great ability as an artist and engineer.

Nesfield started work in 1854, creating the South Parterre with its great Perseus and Andromeda fountain. His scheme involved elegantly

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designed planting and parterres of clipped evergreens and shrubs. The central avenue of planting from the house led to the fountains, terminating at the South Parterre. The East Parterre garden, with its Flora fountain, was designed in the Parterre de Broderie style - that is resembling embroidery, with box-edged shapes filled with coloured gravel and flowers.

Easter 2011 sees the completion of an extensive restoration project on the East Parterre garden, with new bedding displays and authentic topiary.

Following the disastrous fire in 1937, the Witley Estate, including its gardens, fell into long decline. English Heritage has restored the south garden. In addition, Wolfson Foundation funding has assisted with major restoration works in the East Parterre garden, also enabling us to plan development of the formal gardens based on the original Nesfield designs. The showpiece Woodland Walks in the North Park pass many different species of tree and shrub from all over the world.


Attached to Witley Court is Great Witley Church, with its amazing Italianate Baroque interior (not managed by English Heritage). The church has a tearoom, and Witley Court has a superb gift shop.

The restored Perseus and Andromeda fountain, with its original high cascades operating, will be firing between April and October on weekdays at 11am, 12pm, 2pm, 3pm and 4pm and at weekends on the hour every hour from 11am to 4pm. Telephone 01299 896636 www.english-heritage.org.uk

Goodrich Castle

Goodrich stands majestically on a wooded hill commanding the passage of the River Wye into the picturesque valley of Symonds Yat. The castle was begun in the late 11th century, by the English thegn Godric who gave it his name.

A generation later the splendidly preserved square keep which still forms its core was added, probably in the time of Richard 'Strongbow' de Clare, Earl of Pembroke and Lord of Goodrich 1148-76.

Under King Richard the Lionheart, Goodrich was granted along with the earldom of Pembroke to the famous William Marshal, a great castle builder who may have initiated work on the inner ward. Each of the Marshal's four sons inherited the fortress in turn, the last dying childless at Goodrich in 1245.

Thereafter the fortress and earldom passed to Henry VIII's half-brother, William de Valance, who rebuilt its defences and living quarters in the most up-to-date style.

Goodrich still boasts one of the most complete sets of medieval domestic buildings surviving in any English castle. William's widow Countess Joan frequently stayed here with an entourage of up to 200, entertaining her relations and friends in the most lavish style. During the Civil War, Goodrich was held successively by both sides, Sir Henry Lingen's Royalists eventually surrendered in 1646 under threats of undermining and a deadly Parliamentarian mortar. The famous 'Roaring Meg', the only surviving Civil War mortar, has returned to the castle after 350 years. The visitor centre features an exhibition exploring life at the castle from its late 11th century origins until its dramatic fall in 1646, including Civil War artefacts.

Telephone 01600 890538 www.english-heritage.org.uk

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THE HALL AT ABBEY-CWM-HIR: 2012

Over the last 2-3 years thousands of visitors from all over the UK and overseas have toured The Hall at Abbey-Cwm-Hir, a Grade 11* Gothic mansion some 7 miles north of Llandrindod Wells. Such is its uniqueness, the Hall has featured in 10 TV programmes over the last 4 years. In September 2010, the Hall won The Small Business Award and In 2011 the Leadership Award, both at The Powys Business Award ceremony.

Owners Paul and Victoria Humpherston restored the property over the last 13 years. The tours combine the outstanding gothic architecture with stunning interiors - showing great attention to detail and much designed and made by Victoria and helpers. Abbey-Cwm-Hir houses fascinating collections including a beautiful library packed with childrens adventure books in their original bindings, and most notably the many enamel signs !

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As well as the collections, the house shows off Victoria’s interior design ideas and skills, features such as the hand painted designs onto the existing wallpapers, and gold highlighting of the tables and chairs.

Paul and Victoria say; “We have been described as a museum, an art gallery, a stately home and even as a 52 roomed film set! But we think of ourselves as a family home we share with others. Visitors see all 52 rooms guided by a family member in a family atmosphere, we have no private apartments, and people laugh a lot because they never know what`s coming next.�


Spring and Summer 2012

In looking at 2012 Paul says“ We will again be open each day of the year with the house decorated in all rooms for Valentine’s, and for Easter, for all of April.”

A Retro Summer

From 1st April to end September, The Garden Room will be decorated for a Retro Summer with soft furnishings complementing the 30`s, 40`s and 50`s memorabilia.

Christmas at The Hall

In 2011 we enjoyed a fascinating tour of the house by Paul, with the Hall being splendidly decorated for Christmas - of particular note were the different themes for each of the Christmas trees. We came away inspired !

The Gardens and Grounds

The grounds include a romantic walled garden, a lake and waterfall, courtyards and terraces and some splendid mixed woodland. They overlook the ruins of the 12th c “Abbey of The Long Valley” in a spectacular setting, and are amidst the most beautiful in Wales.

Prices

The price for the guided tour of all 52 rooms and full access to the 12 acre gardens remains at £13.00pp for groups (ten persons or over) and for repeat visitors, and £15.00pp for individuals. Visits to the gardens only are £5.00pp

Telephone 01597 851727 www.abbeycwmhir.com

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The

Abbey-Cwm-Hir Hall at

52 rooms of Victorian Splendour

As featured on BBC, ITV and S4C. “A Palace in Radnorshire” “Enchanting” “Best visit to any house, anywhere, anytime”

“The best we have seen” “Words fail me an amazing house in an amazing setting” Bookings are available for TOURS by the owners, throughout the year. •Individuals/couples/groups.

•Weekdays/weekends/evenings. •Parking for cars and coaches.

•Refreshments / catering available. •Gift vouchers available. •12 acre Gardens open.

•Situated off the A483/A44, 7 miles north west of Llandrindod Wells/east of Rhayader. To book contact Paul and Victoria Humpherston on telephone 01597 851 727 or email: info@abbeycwmhir.com or visit our website www.abbeycwmhir.com


WILTON CASTLE Wilton Castle is believed to have been constructed out of local red sandstone in second half of the 12th century replacing a Motte and Bailey. By the 14th century it had been converted into a fortified residence with towers at each corner. In the 16th century a house was built within the walls but this was destroyed by fire around a hundred years later. The house was reconstructed in the 19th century and is still a residence today Wilton Castle is located in the heart of the Wye Valley on the bank of the picturesque River Wye. Located on the edge of the small village of Wilton means it an excellent venue with easy access, amazing grounds and a number of excellent local hotels. Additionally Ross-on-Wye is under a mile away meaning its facilities are close at hand.

The romantic ruins of a restored C12 castle and C16 manor house (not open) on the banks of the River Wye form the perfect backdrop for the gardens including herbaceous borders, beds of sweetly scented old fashioned roses, gravel gardens and shrubberies. The two acre gardens are surrounded by a dry moat which leads down to the river Wye which has ducks, swans, kingfishers etc and even otters have been recently spotted.

Open days 2011 : May 31st and then every Wednesday and Sunday in June, July and August, plus August 30th. Wilton Castle also caters for weddings - see contact details below. Opening times 11am - 5pm. Postcode HR9 6AD (at Wilton Roundabout on A40 opposite BP garage take the lane to Castle Lodge Hotel,Castle entrance is just past the Hotel). Telephone 01989 565759 www.wiltoncastle.co.uk

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SPETCHLEY PARK GARDENS Just three miles east of

the beautiful cathedral

city of Worcester and surrounded by glorious countryside, lies one of Britain’s best kept secrets.

Spetchley Park has one of the most authentic 17th century landscapes in Worcestershire, one that has been designated Grade 2* by English Heritage. Within the landscape is one of the most beautiful and important 19th century gardens in the Country and it’s right on your doorstep. This paradise boasts an enviable collection of plant treasures and veteran trees from every corner of the globe including one of the biggest private collections of peonies, at their best in May.

The Spetchley Revival

The Garden and Deer Park at Spetchley are a charitable Trust. Set up by John Berkeley in 1997, its aim is to preserve the splendor and beauty for future generations. However this

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comes at a cost and therefore they are embarking on capital works project to revive some of the features as well as make the gardens, parkland and history more accessible to those who wish to enjoy it. The project is called the Spetchley Revival and is aimed specifically at creating an educational resource centre housing a museum of the Berkeley archive and a place for learning aimed at children and adult groups; it will focus on rejuvenating the Park and Garden pools and the Horse Pond and it will create a new entrance to the garden with a car park that will allow better access to the garden and wider parkland. This is a large project which will cost £1.4m and to achieve this they will seek both internal and external funding with the project spanning between three and seven years.

Enjoy your wedding in a garden of surprises

Spetchley has so much to offer. From a magnolia-fringed Horse Pool to sweeping lawns and scented rose lawns to magnificent herbaceous borders, a root house and elegant fountain gardens. Spetchley is full of surprises


It is the ideal location for your wedding, your dream day in a place that could quite easily be described as a straight out of a fairytale. Imagine walking with your partner and friends around the garden that inspired Edward Elgar or whose tranquility attracted convalescing airmen in the War. It is the perfect setting for your perfect day.

Events for 2012 The Specialist Plant Fair (30 specialist nurseries) – Sunday 22nd April, 11am-5pm. Entrance £5 per adult

M5 Military re-enactment – Sat & Sun 18th & 19th August. Entrance £7.50 per adult £2.50 per person. Telephone 01453 810303

www.spetchleygardens.co.uk

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Llandrindod Wells Victorian Festival 18th - 26th August

A Family Fun Festival Step back in time to the bygone era of the 1800s and imagine yourself in the heart of the Victorian era. Horses clip clopping along the streets pulling carriages, urchins running along behind, ladies in their spectacular crinoline and bustle dresses, gents tipping their hats as street entertainers.

This year the Llandrindod Wells Victorian Festival promises to bring you an exciting selection of events that are sure to please the whole family. Whatever your age, you are bound to find something that will interest you and bring a smile to your face, some might even find you breaking into fits of laughter. The surrounding backdrop of incredible Victorian architecture dating from the spa town’s heyday in the late 1800’s further enhances the festivities.

Take a trip down memory lane and rekindle those feelings of nostalgia with our many entertainers. Street Entertainers will enthral you with their many skills. Don’t miss the dog show and there will even be the Panic Circus - childrens entertainment. Watch the spectacle of the Victorian Costume Parades and best dressed competitions. Men, here’s your chance to heckle the ladies as they surge on Middleton Street as Suffragettes . Exhibitions are of plenty and local clubs and organisations have really pulled out the stops to produce interesting displays. Look out for our very own Queen Victoria and her ‘Knightings’ where people choose what name they want and why !

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The culmination of the festival is a stunning torchlight procession and spectacular fireworks display over the town’s beautiful lake. A breathtaking sight not to be missed.

With many, many more events going on throughout the 9 days, there is sure to be something for every member of the family and we hope that you come along and experience all the fun of the festival for yourselves.

For more information please contact: Marie Powell, Festival Administrator Victorian Festival, Wadham House, Middleton Street, Llandrindod Wells, Powys, LD1 5DG Tel: 01597 823441 email: info@victorianfestival.co.uk, www.victorianfestival.co.uk


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LUDLOW SPRING FOOD FESTIVAL

May 12th - 13th

Celebrating great beers, bangers, bread, music and more!

Ludlow Spring Festival is now in its fourth year and with over 150 real ales on draught from small breweries in Wales and the Marches, producers selling seriously good food, a huge display of classic cars all washed down with fantastic music inside Ludlow Castle, who could be surprised at the success of Ludlow newest festival!

Beer

Now this will be a real ale lovers paradise of over 150 different beers from SIBA members

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showcasing the best in Wales and the Marches alongside perry, cider and Marches wines and liqueurs for a bit of variety. There will be top bands playing in here to entertain you from 11.00 am right through to closing.

A quick walk outside the festival pub marquee and you’ll find yourself amongst a dazzling array of fabulous classic cars – more than 200 will be present over the weekend with many of the larger cars (those that can’t fit through the castle gate) in the square on Sunday.

Bread, Bangers and more...

More than 60 passionate small producers are exhibiting this year, so as well as great food on


the day; you’ll be able to take home some lovingly produced fare. The food on offer is diverse and includes artisan cheeses and breads to fresh fish, meat and game; you’ll also find homemade cakes, fudge, preserves and pickles. A number of local cider, wine and liqueur makers are also represented.

BREAD - Now if you have never cooked REAL bread, then this will be a whole new experience for you as bread demonstrations will be taking you through the process from yeast through to flour varieties and dough making. For those with the passion locally milled flour producers, local bakers will be on site to buy from and to answer questions. Telephone 01584 873957 www.ludlowspringfestival.co.uk

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LLANGOLLEN INTERNATIONAL MUSICAL EISTEDDFOD July 3rd - 8th

Other Eisteddfod highlights throughout the week include the delivery of the Annual Llangollen Peace Message, the symbolic and moving Sound of Silence where the entire field comes together to link arms and the return of Folk Friday – a whole day dedicated to live folk music on the outdoor stages.

Alison Balsom

It’s a vibrant festival of music, dance and culture held in a picturesque Dee Valley setting. If you’re planning on visiting anywhere this summer, make sure it’s Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod.

First held in 1947 to relay an international message of peace, goodwill and harmony to the backdrop of song and dance, the Eisteddfod has continued to grow. Each year, colourful competitors arrive from all around the world, from the Philippines and Canada, Finland and Ghana.

Expect an array of colour and a celebration of cultures when competitors and visitors alike come together on Tuesday 3 July to open the 66th Eisteddfod with the traditional Parade of Nations through the town.

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As the sun sets each night, internationally renowned artists descend on Llangollen town in star-studded evening concerts. Opera stars Wynne Evans (Grand Finale: Sunday 8th July) and Lesley Garrett (Queen's Diamond Jubilee Concert: Wednesday 4th July), Broadway and West End stars Alfie Boe (Thursday 5th July) and John Owen Jones (Grand Finale: Sunday 8th July), world famous conductor Karl Jenkins, The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and instrumentalists Alison Balsom (Queen's John Owen Jones


Lesley Garrett

Diamond Jubilee Concert: Wednesday 4th July) and Nicola Benedetti are just some of the names scheduled to appear in 2012.

The honour and title of Choir of the World will be on the line at the international choral competition on Saturday 7 July. Here, the winners of the Mixed, Chamber, Barbershop, Male and Female choirs during the week return to the stage to determine who is the ultimate winner. The winner will also take home the coveted Pavarotti Trophy.

Alfie Boe

Leading the week’s activities will be the Llangollen Eisteddfod President Terry Waite CBE: “People from different religious, ethnic, racial and social backgrounds gather together in Llangollen to share and express themselves through the language of music. Music has the capacity to breathe a certain harmony into the soul and those who experience harmony and peace within are better able to work for peace throughout the world.”

For more information or to book tickets for the concerts, visit the bilingual website, www.international-eisteddfod.co.uk or contact the Box Office on 01978 862001. Wynne Evans

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PRESTEIGNE FESTIVAL

23rd - 28th August 2012

Situated in an intimate town on the Powys/Herefordshire border, the Presteigne Festival has become a mecca for those seeking artistic nourishment and musical discovery in idyllic surroundings. With a truly forward looking commissioning policy, the organisation works closely with composers and artists to create and curate inspiring programmes and events for an ever-widening Festival community.

2012 is a very special year for the Presteigne Festival – we celebrate thirty years of promoting great music in the unspoiled countryside of the Welsh Marches; we’ll take this opportunity to look back over past successes and to look forward to an exciting and ever more diverse future. The Festival takes place over a busy sixday period at the end of August – we’ll promote over thirty events of which sixteen are concerts supported with complimentary activities to include talks, walks and literary events. Our main concert venue is St Andrew’s Church in Presteigne, for many years the jewel in the Festival’s crown, with other performances given at village churches and halls in the surrounding area.

Tom Poster

Popular Scottish-based composer Sally Beamish is to be composer-in-residence for the 2012 Festival, and there will be an exciting crop of commissions from composers who have strongheld links with Presteigne: two new orchestral pieces – a saxophone concerto from Australian composer Peter Sculthorpe and Variations on a theme of Reger for string orchestra by Matthew Taylor; chamber pieces include an oboe quintet from Michael Berkeley, a string quartet by John McCabe, together with a new work for two violins and viola from Cecilia McDowall, a piece for solo cello by Elizabeth Winters and three songs for soprano and piano by James Francis Brown, Peter Fribbins and Alan Mills. Carducci Quartet

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2012 will see artistic horizons extended with further outreach activity. Throughout the school year, children from five local primary schools will be working with professional writers and musicians as part of Singing Histories, an exciting education project which culminates with the performance of a new work by Liz Lane to be premiered at a special community concert in July 2012. The Festival is also to continue its association with Dominic Horne and the Birmingham Conservatoire, in the promotion of a third competition for composers with a composers’ workshop in Birmingham. The winning work will be premiered at the 2012 Festival by virtuoso saxophonist, Amy Dickson. The Presteigne Festival City Tour, which takes place in autumn 2012, will visit important venues in Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff and Oxford – a trio of two violins and viola will perform a programme of repertoire first heard at the Festival in August.

Apart from exciting pieces by contemporary and twentieth-century British composers, other music to be performed includes important works by Bach, Beethoven, Brahms, Debussy, Dvorak, Ross Edwards, Grieg, Haydn, Hindemith, Mendelssohn, Mozart, Rachmaninov, Saint-Saëns, Schubert, Schumann, Richard Strauss and Webern – a magnificent array by anyone’s standards.

An impressive collection of performing talent will be in evidence at the Festival in 2012, many artists returning specially to join in our thirtieth anniversary celebrations: the Carducci Quartet, world-class wind players Nicholas Daniel (oboe)

Sarah-Jane Bradley

Nicholas Daniel

Retorica

and Amy Dickson (saxophone), popular string players Gemma Rosefield (cello), Sarah-Jane Bradley (viola) and Retorica violinists Harriet Mackenzie and Philippa Mo, pianists Tom Poster, Simon Lepper and Catherine Milledge, singers Gillian Keith (soprano), William Purefoy (countertenor), Matthew Long (tenor) and Michael Bundy (baritone), the City of Canterbury Chamber Choir and the Presteigne Festival Orchestra conducted by artistic director, George Vass.

Continuing its important partnership with BBC Radio 3, two concerts from the Festival are to be broadcast.

www.presteignefestival.com Telephone 01544 267800

Amy Dickson

Gemma Rosefield

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LUDLOW FOOD FESTIVAL

7th - 9th September

The unforgettable festival - it’s like no other... The 2012 Ludlow Marches Food and Drink Festival will take place on 7-9 September in Ludlow, Shropshire, England, the small town with the large reputation for good food and drink.

In 2011, the Festival featured more than 150 top quality small independent food and drink producers from the Marches, the England-Wales border country, inside Ludlow Castle.

Spend the day inside Ludlow Castle enjoying the independent food and drink producers and suppliers of real food, ale, cider, perry, wine, bread, bangers and everything in between plus more from the Marches, with samples and tastings (some free).

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Highlights include: • •

• • • • • • •

In the Castle

Demonstrations and talks Outside Food Vendors - a wide variety of quality hot and cold meals, Childrens entertainment Over 150 local food and drink producers Hands on demonstrations Knife Skills with Eckington Manor, Slow Food Taste Workshops Live music 'Pop Up' Restaurant featuring top chefs,

In the town Ludlow Sausage Trail, visit 5 of the top butchers in the country to vote for the best. The Real Ale Trail will help you wash down all


those goodies and visiting over 12 pubs and trying the best real ale on offer across the county. The bread trail takes you around 3 of the towns best bakers discovering the best loaf out there! As well as the food producers, throughout Ludlow's historic town centre there is seemingly no end of food-related events, such as the pudding tastings in the Methodist Church and even more food traders on the market square.

Telephone 01584 873957 www.foodfestival.co.uk

This was Britain's first successful food and drink festival when it started back in 1995. It's grown considerably since then, with large numbers of visitors from throughout the UK, as well as from overseas - but this ‘not for profit’ organisation has stayed firmly with the original idea of highlighting the great food and drink that is available in the Marches, and to have a great time!

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HEREFORDSHIRE’S HERITAGE SEVICES

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Hereford Museum and Art Gallery Hereford Museum and Art Gallery is housed in a spectacular Victorian gothic building and displays intriguing artefacts from the county's permanent collections and also showcases an exciting and changing exhibition programme including contemporary fine art and photography.

September also open on Sundays and Bank Holiday Mondays from 10am – 4pm

Admission is free. Email: herefordmuseums@herefordshire.gov.uk Web: www.herefordshire.gov.uk/museums

Telephone 01432 260692. Broad Street, Hereford, HR4 9AU

Explore Herefordshire's history through our thematic displays or be inspired by intricate embroidery in our collections. Wonder at the scale of our Kenchester mosaic or get close to the bees and learn about their life cycle. Not to be missed our new Brian Hatton exhibition; the life and times of a young artist A visit with lots of hands on activities for all the family, whatever your age or interests you will be guaranteed to learn something new. The building is fully accessible via the lift, located at the back of the Library on the ground floor.

Opening times all year Tuesday - Friday 10am – 5pm and Saturday 10am – 4pm. From April –

The Old House

Discover the Old House a magnificent Jacobean half-timbered building in the heart of Hereford City and now a wonderfully preserved dwelling furnished in period style.

Built in 1621 and home in the past to butchers, ironmongers and bankers, the house was

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transformed into a fantastic museum in 1929. Explore the intimate areas of the domestic setting and be intrigued by the quirky and unknown. Take a peek into the rooms and view the fabulous collection of oak furniture, babywalkers and rare wall paintings. Enjoy the hands-on activities for children and look out for special family events run during half terms and holidays.

Opening times all year Tuesday - Saturday 10am – 5pm. From April – September we are also open on Sundays and Bank Holiday Mondays from 10am – 4pm

Admission is free. Email: herefordmuseums@herefordshire.gov.uk Web: www.herefordshire.gov.uk/museums

Telephone 01432 260694. High Town, Hereford, HR1 2AA

Market House Visitor Centre, Ross-on-Wye

A unique 17th Century listed building in Rosson-Wye, Market House creates a tangible connection between the past and present. It is a focal point for local people and visitors to the town alike, uniting the community by virtue of its unique historic and cultural significance.

Situated in the heart of the town, it has been at

the centre of Ross-on-Wye’s history for 360 years, and now fulfils an essential function for the area serving both as a heritage and visitor information centre. The building hosts several types of exhibitions for local crafts and arts producers, and offers activities for both children and adults all year round, as well as many essential services for the community such as coach ticket bookings and providing information to visitors.

Above all, Market House is a beautiful building to visit, not least for a great balcony which opens up fantastic views of the town and surroundings. The building still maintains many of its original features, providing a window into the past yet serving all the requirements of a modern, thriving town.

Opening Times – Daily 10.30-4.30 except Tuesdays Email: herefordmuseums@herefordshire.gov.uk Web: www.herefordshire.gov.uk/museums

Market Place, Ross-on-Wye, HR9 5BZ Telephone 01432 260675

Museum Resource and Learning Centre

The Museum Resource and Learning Centre is a fantastic storage facility that cares for the County's outstanding collections. Home to some thousands of wonderful objects from costume and textiles, paintings and prints, decorative arts, geology, archaeology and social history, all preserved in controlled conditions for current and future generations. You are invited to visit our experts on special ID days at MR&LC, bring along your own objects for identification - learn about them and how to


care for them or why not arrange an independent research visit.

We have a continuing programme of lectures, workshops and events for all ages. Take the opportunity to tour the stores on our special open days or arrange to bring a group for a behind-the-scenes experience and discover some of Herefordshire's rare treasures.

Opening times: Access to collections by appointment or on 2nd Thursday and 3rd Tuesday of each month 10am – 1pm

There are regular events such as workshops, lectures or ID days and you can also make a research visit or bring a group to see behind the scenes by appointment. For more information, please contact: 58 Friars Street, Hereford, HR4 0AS Tel (01432) 383383 Email: herefordmuseums@herefordshire.gov.uk Web: www.herefordshire.gov.uk/museums ADMISSION FREE

Ledbury Heritage Centre

Visit Ledbury Heritage Centre to get a flavour of bygone years in this bustling market town. Housed in a beautiful 16th century building the

centre has changing community exhibitions as well as a range of permanent displays relating to the town and the history of the building.

Learn about famous residents such as John Masefield and Elizabeth Barrett Browning or find out about the changes wrought to the town in the Victorian era when the canal and the railways arrived. See Ledbury in days gone by in the wonderful Tilley photographic collection, and soak up the atmosphere of this stunning black and white town. Hands on activities for children, and look out for special activity sessions in school holidays

Church Lane Ledbury, HR8 1DN Telephone 01531 635680 Email: herefordmuseums@herefordshire.gov.uk Web: www.herefordshire.gov.uk/museums

Opening Times : Open daily 10.30 – 4.30pm from April to October Closed on Good Friday and Easter Sunday Every museum needs volunteers to help in day to day activities, please see the contact details at the end of each article.

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HEREFORDSHIRE’S INDEPENDENT MUSEUMS

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The Waterworks Museum The Waterworks Museum – Hereford is a 150year time-capsule of working machinery and social history which tells the story of water supplies in Wales and the Marches.

The range of engines, pumps and equipment on display is unique. Most of the machines are the last examples of their kind working anywhere in the world. Its historic buildings and grounds are set close by the beautiful River Wye about 1km from the city centre. Follow the heritage signs from the A49.

The treasure of the collection is the oldest working triple-expansion steam engine in the UK. It stands two-floors high and is quite awesome in operation. The Museum prides itself on having its engines in operating condition and is run entirely by volunteers. It is a friendly museum where all the staff have time to talk to visitors.

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Children especially love to see the superbly restored horse-drawn fire engine. This dates from 1805 and was used on a private estate in Herefordshire (on loan from Herefordshire Museums Service.) There are lots more activities for children to do including trails and time-lines.

The Museum is open every Tuesday (not in steam) 11.00am – 4.00pm (except 18 and 25 December). The Museum is open in steam from April to October on the second and last Sundays of the month, 1.00pm – 4.00pm, plus Easter and August bank holidays. Pre-arranged group and education visits all year

Broomy Hill, Hereford, HR4 0LJ Telephone 01432 357236 www.waterworksmuseum.org.uk


The Cider Museum

The Cider Museum is housed in an original cidermaking factory and is designed to look at the whole cidermaking industry worldwide, from its earliest beginnings through to the mass production methods which exist today.

Learn about the history of cider making – how the apples were milled and pressed and how the resulting juice was fermented to produce cider.

Visitors can explore original cider cellars and view cidermaking equipment, a cooper’s workshop and a vat house.

Listen to oral history recordings and watch vintage film. Admire a rare collection of English lead crystal cider glasses dating from the 18th century onwards and 19th century watercolours of cider apples and perry pears.

The original Champagne cellars reveal racks of bottles where the “Methode Champagnoise” (a bottle fermentation process used in French Champagne production) was first applied to cider in 1905. The hydraulic presses, vat house and bottling machinery date from the late 19th century.

A programme of activities and temporary exhibitions is arranged throughout the year including the Annual Cidermaking Festival which will take place on the 20th & 21st October 2012. There will be demonstrations of traditional cidermaking, coopering and blacksmithing along with beekeeping and morris dancing. A fun day out for all the family with games and activities for the children.

Opening times: April-October – Monday-Saturday 10am-5pm November-March – Monday-Saturday 11am-3pm Open Bank Holiday weekends

Cider Museum Pomona Place, Hereford, HR4 0EF

Telephone: 01432 354207 www.cidermuseum.co.uk

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Kington Museum The museum was opened in June 1986, and is housed in what were the stables of the King’s Head Inn that was demolished in 1885.

re-erected; this one used to be in the back garden of 14 High Street.

The Museum contains a wide variety of artifacts connected with the town: reproduction helmets and breastplates as worn in the Battle of Ledbury in 1645 and a small collection of musical instruments ranging from a 'hurdygurdy' to a Tibetan pipe fashioned from a thigh bone are among the varied items to be seen in the museum.

On show are bygones of all kinds. These include a small selection that is displayed on an aptly named Puzzle Shelf as most visitors are baffled by at least some of the objects, as well as the collection of musical instruments, there is a collection of costume and a fine display of lace.

The collection is formed of items received from residents of the town and the immediate surrounding area, together with artefacts from further afield that have a link with Kington. This year there will be a jubilee exhibition and also one covering maritime disasters associated with the town.

There is a small tearoom adjoining the museum where tea, coffee, cold drinks and homemade cake are served at very reasonable prices. Opening hours are the same as the museum.

Open April – September Tuesday – Saturday 10.30am – 4pm

Mill Street, Kington, HR5 3AL Telephone: 01544 231 748 or 01544 231486 out of hours

Butcher Row House Museum, Ledbury

The museum, in Church Lane, is one of a row of 15 burgage houses and shops, many of them butchers, that ran down the middle of what is now the High Street. They were bought out by public subscription in 1830 and one or two were

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Much historical information is available, including copies of historic documents.

The museum attracts around 14,000 visitors a year. It is open daily from 11am to 5pm from Good Friday to 30 September and from 11am to 3pm in October. Admission is free but donations are welcome from those wo wish to show their appreciation of this volunteer run museum.

Church Lane, Ledbury, HR8 1DW Telephone 01531 635169. Opening times Easter – September daily 11am – 5pm. October daily 11am – 3pm


Weobley is full of black and white houses and the museum shows many features of timberframing as well as aspects of everyday life.

A walk leaflet taking you around the village is available from the museum and local shops

Leominster Museum The Museum tells the story of Leominster and its people from pre Roman times to the present day.

The collection comprises artefacts, pictures, photographs, postcards and documents, including an important collection of paintings and drawings by famous Leominster Victorian artist John Scarlett Davis. Etnam Street, Leominster, HR6 8AL Telephone 01568 615186 Opening times Easter – October Monday – Friday 11am – 4pm Saturday 11am – 1.30pm

Weobley Museum

Back Lane, Weobley, HR4 8SG Telephone 01544 318278 Opening times April, May, June: Monday and Tuesday 10.00am -1.00pm July, August September: Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday 10.00am - 1.00pm Bank holiday Mondays from Easter to September 10.00am – 4.00pm Open at other times by request

The Thomas Shop

The name comes from the family run shop which dates back to 1805. The Thomas Shop Museum is a restoration of the original shop, and its unique collection grows continually, thanks to the generous donations of the Friends of the Thomas Shop. Other attractions at the Thomas Shop include: Tea Shop, Galleries, and sales of wool and fibre items, traditional craft, and a range of unusual gifts including a newly introduced, well researched and produced Welsh doll.

Weobley Museum is situated on the site of the old police station and courtroom. The museum displays artefacts and archives which put Weobley in context through its history.

Penybont, Llandrindod Wells, Powys, OD1 5UA Telephone 01597 851951 Opening times: 10am - 5pm on Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays From 3 February 2012 till the end of the season www.thomas-shop.com

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Church Lane, Ledbury, HR8 1DH Telephone 01531 632306

16th Century Painted Room No. 1 Church Lane is one of the most interesting yet mysterious buildings in Ledbury. The spot where it stands, at the junction of the 'kings highway' and the east/west track from Hereford Cathedral to Ledbury Parish Church, has undoubtedly been the site of continuous human activity for more than a thousand years. In Elizabethan times, Ledbury was a small town of some 600 to 650 people, and the market and religious centre for a further 880 rural parishioners; some 1500 in all. Yet, despite having records for Ledbury going back to 1557 and beyond, for this building - unlike others around it, there is, as yet, no exact record of either it's purpose or its inhabitants.

According to Ledbury Parish Church Archives, we learn 'The Parish of Ledbury in the Reign of Queen Elizabeth l' by the late Miss S.F Robinson, there may have been built here a Booth Hall to replace the original early 15th century one sited where the Feathers Hotel is now. Such a use for this building - with its concern for the proper conduct of Ledbury's markets and fairs; market toll gathering; the Court of Piepowder; control of vagrants and the distribution of poor law monies -might well account for the very particular choice of texts used in the Painted Room, with their emphasis on the good citizen, duty and love.

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Opening times March to April. 11.30am to 3.00pm. April to end October. 11.00am to 4.00pm Sundays from mid July to mid September 2.00pm to 5.00pm Bank Holidays 2.00pm to 5.00pm (Not open August bank holiday) Booked tours at other times by request.

Violette Szabo Museum This museum has been painstakingly created in memory of this undoubted heroine, in celebration of her bravery in missions with the Special Operations Executive before her untimely death at the age of 23 in 1945. Violette Szabo was immortalised in the film Carve Her Name With Pride.

To make an appointment, confirm a visit or for further enquiries please call Miss Rosemary Rigby on 01981 540477

Cartref, Tump Lane, Wormelow, HR2 8HN Opening times April – October Wednesday 11am – 1pm & 2pm - 4pm or by appointment

Please confirm a visit before travelling


Bromyard and District Local and Family History Centre

Mayor’s Parlour Hereford Town Hall, opened in 1904, is a very fine building and the Mayor's Parlour Suite contains a selection of items relating to the history of the City of Hereford.

The Bromyard and District Local and Family History Society is based in Bromyard, Herefordshire, England, and was founded in 1966. It is run entirely by volunteers and receives no regular local authority financial support. The centre was opened for public use on May 1st 2003. It exists to foster interest, enjoyment, research and publication of Bromyard's local history.

Individuals and groups are welcome to visit the Mayor’s Parlour to learn about the City’s heritage, to see the historic items on display in the Parlour, and to view the City Silver and the Charters, dating from 1189, held in the Vaults. Town Hall, St Owen’s Street, Hereford, HR1 2PJ Opening times Contact the Mayor’s Secretary on 01432 260438

Eardisland Dovecote

This dates from about 1700 and stands in the mill stream. Renovated in 2000, you can view the nesting places and the internal structure, while the building also serves as an exhibition venue, tourist information site and shop for local produce. Eardisland, Herefordshire HR6 Telephone 01544 388226 Opening times all year daily

5 Sherford Street, Bromyard, HR7 4DL Telephone 01885 488755 Opening times Thursday and Friday 10am – 1pm & 2pm – 4.30pm Saturday 10am – 12.30pm

Hereford Light Infantry Museum

The Herefordshire Light Infantry Museum tells the story of the Herefordshire Light Infantry in campaigns such as Galipoli, Egypt and Palestine. It also describes their inception as the Herefordshire Rifle Volunteers raised in 1860,

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and in more modern times, their involvement in the arrest of Admiral Doenitz at the end of WWII. The Museum contains a collection of objects from the Napoleonic period as well as unifroms and medals associated with the regiments raised in Herefordshire Harold Street, Hereford, HR1 2QX Telephone 01432 870420 Opening times by appointment only

The Time Machine Museum

Visit this amazing place where you step into the Tardis and you are transported to an extensive and exciting display of TV, film, science fiction and rare and collectable toys of yesteryear, featuring Dr Who and including Thunderbirds, Stingray, Captain Scarlet, Supercar, Star Wars, dolls, pedal cars, railways, Disney and so much more!

Belmont Abbey

Belmont Abbey is a community of about 45 Benedictine monks, with buildings designed by E W Pugin and founded in 1859. The Abbey church is open to the public, houses fine stained glass and other interesting artefacts and has undergone extensive renovation. Tours of the Abbey gardens and some other rooms at the abbey can also be arranged.

The monks attend the Abbey church five times a day. The public are welcome to attend these services. Refreshments are available in the Abbey’s guest house, Hedley Lodge and CDs of the monks singing and music, guidebooks and related material can be obtained from the Bookshop and Information centre

Hereford, HR2 9RZ 01432 374747 Open: all year, free access www.belmontabbbey.org.uk

www.timemachineuk.com

12 The Square, Bromyard, HR7 4BP Telephone 01885 488329

Opening times: 10:30am - 5pm every day 1st April to 30th September 10:30am - 5pm Saturday & Sunday 1st October to 31st March Open Bank Holidays and School Half terms Closed 25th December and 26th December.

Hereford Cathedral - Mappa Mundi & Chained Library

Hereford Cathedral is fortunate to care for two important historical treasures. Mappa Mundi is a late thirteenth-century map of the world and is a pictorial encyclopaedia. It is adorned by strange beasts and other characters that tell stories from the bible and classical myth. With Jerusalem at the centre, it provides a unique insight into the medieval mind.

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garden and 14th Century Preaching Cross, all giving a fascinating insight into the history of the site, its inhabitants and associates through the buildings themselves and exhibits on show.

Mappa Mundi is exhibited alongside the worldfamous Chained Library. The Cathedral’s book collection was chained to its shelves as a security measure over 400 years ago and there are fascinating medieval manuscripts and printed books which feature in temporary exhibitions in the Library.

Opening times April – October Wednesday and Saturday 11.00am – 3.00pm. Group tours by appointment all year. Chapel services 1st Tuesday each month at 11am.

Telephone 01432 274903

5 College Cloisters, Cathedral Close, Hereford, HR1 2NG, Telephone 01432 374226

Opening times: Winter opening until end March 2012. Longer summer hours from April 2012` Open Monday - Saturday: 10am - 4pm (last admission 3.30pm) Closed Sundays

Please check times before you visit www.herefordcathedral.org

St John’s Medieval Museum & Coningsby Hospital

The Coningsby site offers so much more than might be expected with the restored 13th Century Chapel of the Order of St John, the St John Medieval Museum, a replica hospital for Coningsby Servitors, a ruin of part of the Blackfriars Monastery plus an attractive rose

Herefordshire Society of Model Engineers

The society was started in Hereford in 1962. In 2012 they celebrate their 50th anniversary with an exhibition in the club house, open to the public from 22 – 24 June. Train rides available April to October on the 2nd and last Sundays of the month from 12noon - 4.00pm. Light refreshments, ‘00’ gauge display, outside garden railway gauge ‘1’. Parties and new members welcome

Adjacent to the Waterworks museum. All enquiries 01432 270143

Broomy Hill Railway, HR4 0LJ Opening times see www.hsme.co.uk

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WESTONS CIDER Visitor Centre 2012 Deep in the heart of the Herefordshire countryside Westons Cider is situated in the village of Much Marcle. Nestling on a gentle hillside amongst apple and perry pear orchards “The Bounds”, with its 400 year old farmhouse, is the centre piece to a unique day out that has something to offer everybody. Join a tour around the cider mill and be treated to a thorough history lesson. Hear how cider is produced, from the planting of the orchards to the moment the cider is poured into a glass. Step back in time as you experience the tranquil and fragrant vat sheds housing historic oak vats, some nearly 200 years old and all still used.

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All tours end with a FREE tasting (adults only). Over thirty products are on offer, each with a unique taste sensation: cloudy or clear, sweet or dry, still or sparkling, strong, low alcohol, or organic. The choice is yours!!

Complete the experience with a visit to the cider and gift shops, where you can purchase your favourite cider or a gift for a family member or friend, stroll through the award winning Henry Weston Courtyard Garden and into the Bottle Museum Tearoom. Here you can admire over 1,000 different cider bottles whilst enjoying a light snack or delicious cream tea. Alternatively you may opt for a meal in the Scrumpy House Restaurant-café, which serves delicious food allday and uses the finest local produce.


Events & Diary Dates 2012

Blossomtime Weekend - Sunday 6th & Monday 7th May

Open Farm Sunday - Sunday 17th June 10am4pm

Much Marcle Steam Rally - Saturday 21st & Sunday 22nd July

Family Fun Day - Sunday 19th August 10am4pm

Big Apple Weekend - Saturday 13th & Sunday 14th October 10am-4pm

Harvest Celebration - Supper and tour ÂŁ19.95 Friday 19th & Friday 26th October 7pm

The Bounds, Much Marcle, Herefordshire, HR8 2NQ Telephone 01531 660108 www.westons-cider.co.uk

Ledbury,

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THE JUDGE’S LODGING

house with a difference – you can touch! You can lie on the beds, read the judge’s books and even pump water in the kitchen. Below stairs there is the full range of servants’ rooms to explore, with kitchens, sleeping quarters and workrooms; a whole gaslit world to discover. The tour is finished by a trip to the vast echoing courtroom, where you are haunted by the echoes of trials long since concluded. You are guided through this Victorian world by an eavesdropping’ audiotour featuring the voice of actor Robert Hardy.

‘These days it’s common enough to find well-preserved period buildings tagged with such clichés as ‘frozen in time’ or ‘a real time capsule’. These places may please the eye but too often they don’t convince. The Judge’s Lodging is different for one simple reason: it smells right. One step through the baize-covered entrance door, and the odour of paraffin lamps fills your nostrils. The power of scent evokes domestic life in the 19th century more vividly that any stage-setting could.’ Alex Ramsay, World of Interiors.

Do you know the correct way to run a bath? How can you trap insects with a turnip? What was the first thing Queen Victoria did after her coronation? These and many other questions are answered on the new Judge’s Lodging website. This Victorian museum in Presteigne has long had a reputation for liking the quirkier side of history, so the new site is packed with handy hints the Victorian way, recipes for icecream and jelly, strange facts, along with information about the building and learning resources. Visit it and you will be guaranteed to find something to fascinate. Visit the museum itself and you will be in for an even bigger treat, for this award-winning historic judge’s accommodation and court offers a most unusual journey back in time. Wander through the judge’s private apartments and make yourself at home, for The Judge’s Lodging an historic

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In 2011 the Judge’s Lodging received the Highly Commended second place in a major new heritage award scheme, Hudson's Heritage Awards choice of the best heritage site in Britain for Education, Family and Community work. The awards were presented on 1st December at the Marriot Grovesnor Square, London, by celebrity hosts Lloyd Grossman and Lucinda Lambton.


This award is not just just for the museum's education and family services. It also acknowledges the fantastic new Presteigne Community Collections project started this year, where a group of local volunteers have joined staff in working with the town's collection of objects.

In the summer of 2012 there will be a new exhibition ‘Sporting Life in Presteigne’ with a special focus on 2011 BBC Wales Sports Personality of the Year, World Supersport Champion Chaz Davies. Also this summer, discover more about the world of Dickens’ work throughout the period rooms. In the autumn, find out more about some families whose trades and inventions have made Presteigne the place it is today. For any information on the museum and any of its activities, visit the website or just call the staff who are always happy to chat. Telephone 01544 260650 www.judgeslodging.org.uk

Images © Alex Ramsay

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WORCESTERSHIRE’S MUSEUMS

Worcestershire has a long and fascinating history that the museums and heritage attractions of this "most English of counties" are proud to share with you.

Droitwich Heritage Centre

The Almonry

This 14th Century building was once home to the Almoner of the Benedictine Abbey that was founded at Evesham in the 8th Century. See the history of Evesham in displays of Anglo-Saxon treasure through to 18th Century costume. The Almonry will be undergoing developments during 2012, so ensure you check the website before visits.

On the site of the former Brine Baths, the present 1930s black and white building houses a fascinating local history museum alongside the friendly and welcoming Tourist Information Centre. Droitwich is famed for its involvement with early radio broadcasting involvement and Brine is so salty, that the Dead Sea is the only other to equal its strength. See displays on local salt-making and BBC radio Broadcasting.

St. Richard's House, Victoria Square, Droitwich Spa, Worcs, WR9 8DS 01905 774312 heritage@droitwichspa.gov.uk www.droitwichspa.gov.uk

George Marshall Medical Museum

WR11 4BG Abbey Gate, Evesham, WR11 4BG 01386 446944 tic@almonry.ndo.co.uk www.almonryevesham.org

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This year, the Medical Museum will be across two sites in Worcester University and Worcester Hospital. The museum houses a collection of objects illustrating the way that medicine has developed in Worcestershire over the past 250


Malvern Museum of Local History

Malvern Museum is housed in the mediaeval Malvern Priory Gatehouse. The Museum comprises of a number of themed rooms :

years. View a Victorian apothecary shop, new exhibits and the death masks of hanged criminals.

Charles Hastings Education Centre, Worcestershire Royal Hospital, Worcester, WR5 1DD

* The Malvern Hills Room houses geological displays. * The Mediaeval Room shows the development of the Priory church and the Guesten Hall. * The Water Cure Room features water cure doctors and their famous clients. * The Victorian Room shows Malvern as a popular health spa resort. * The Gallery shows the importance of science and technology with radar and satellite communication developed in Malvern. * The Modern Room features Santler and Morgan cars. The museum is open from 25th March until the end of October.

Worcester Royal Infirmary

Following a significant grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund, the George Marshall Medical Museum and the University of Worcester have teamed up to create a brand new, permanent exhibition of medical history in the former Worcester Royal Infirmary, now the University’s City Campus (due to open in July – contact Catriona Smellie on c.smellie@worc.ac.uk for more information). The Infirmary, The University of Worcester, Castle Street, Worcester, WR1 3AS

01905 760738 louise.price@worcsacute.nhs.uk www.medicalmuseum.org.uk

Priory Gatehouse, Abbey Road, Malvern 01684 567811 cora@malvernspa.com www.malvernmuseum.co.uk

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Goff's School, Church Street, Tenbury Wells, WR15 8E4 Website under construction, for further information telephone the honorary curator Liz Finlay 01584 810945

Tudor House

The Carpet Museum This newly opening museum for October 2012 will house a collection of designs, textiles, machinery and archives from Kidderminster's internationally famed carpet industry. This new museum will offer loom demonstrations, exhibitions and educational resources in the heart of Kidderminster. Look out for updates during the year. Morrisons entrance, Green Street, Kidderminster 01562 69001 info@carpetmuseum.co.uk www.carpetmuseum.co.uk

Tenbury Museum

This museum, housed in a 19th century school room, tells the story of Tenbury Wells and the surrounding area, particularly in the 19th and 20th centuries. Open from Good Friday until October 30th at these times: Tuesday – Saturday 10.30 am – 1.00 pm and Sunday 2.00 pm - 4.00 pm .

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Follow the house's fascinating history, from its origins as weavers' cottages to the Cross Keys Tavern, Cadbury's Coffee House, a school clinic and World War II ARP billet.

Friar Street, Worcester, WR1 2NA Telephone 01905 612308 (during opening hours Wednesday and Saturday, 10-4) manager@tudorhouse.org.uk www.tudorhouse.org.uk

The Transport Museum, Wythall

Volunteer-run treasure! Three halls accommodate 100 buses, battery-electric vehicles and fire engines from the Midlands and beyond. Classic buses and miniature steam railway operate on major days. Cafeteria (light refreshments), shop and picnic area.


Chapel Lane, Wythall, Worcestershire, B47 6JX 01564 826471 enquiries@wythall.org.uk www.whythall.org.uk

Worcestershire Museum of Freemasonry

The Museum is dedicated to the collection and display of Masonic memorabilia from the UK and the rest of the world. Includes antique glass and ceramics, medals, historic regalia and a library of more than 5,000 books

Forge Mill Needle Museum

Forge Mill Needle Museum, which houses original water powered machinery, tells the fascinating and sometimes gruesome story of Victorian needle making. Just a short walk from the mill are the ruins of a Cistercian abbey and visitor centre. Please see the website for varying opening times during the year.

Masonic Hall, Rainbow Hill, Worcester, WR3 8LX info@WorcesterMasonicMuseum.co.uk www.worcestermasonicmuseum.co.uk

Bewdley Museum

Set in the historic Butcher's Shambles, Town Jails and Brass Foundry this unique museum offers discovery, excitement and relaxation for the whole family. Get involved in making a rope or clay pipe and enjoy the delightful gardens and cafe.

Needle Mill Lane, Riverside, Worcestershire, B98 8HY 01527 62509 museum@redditchbc.gov.uk www.forgemill.org.uk

Redditch,

Stourport The Stourport Canal Basins are home to a selection of Heritage Rooms which are home to the local history of this once thriving place for the golden age of canals. The Heritage Rooms include “Discover Stourport� and Information Point, the Old Ticket Office and The Tontine Stable.

Load Street, Bewdley, DY12 1AT 01299 403573 bewdley.museum@wyreforestdc.gov.uk www.wyreforestdc.gov.uk/museum

01299 822827 stourportforward@btconnect.com www.stourporttown.co.uk/ stourport_basins_heritage_rooms.html

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WORCESTERSHIRE COUNTY MUSEUM

Whether you are looking for a fun family day out, a chance to learn something new, a peaceful stroll through nature or just a nice cup of tea and a cake Worcestershire County Museum has it all. The County Museum, housed in historic Hartlebury Castle, home to the Bishops of Worcester for over 1000 years, is a fascinating place to explore. The museum collections include toys, domestic items, costume and transport and our newest galleries look at the wonders of Worcestershire, the history of the county's farming and agriculture and the importance of water to the region. Visitors can also explore room sets such as the Schoolroom, Nursery, Victorian and Civil War rooms.

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The Castle Kitchen cafĂŠ serves a variety of homemade dishes, light lunches and tempting cakes in the atmospheric Castle Kitchen. Visitors can also choose to eat in the Orchard picnic area or let off steam in Old Moat Coppice nature reserve. The Museum also has a lovely gift shop which sells a fantastic range of cards and gifts as well as contemporary craft items from the Worcestershire Guild of Designer Craftsman.


In 2012 the Museum will be extending the run of its 2011 exhibition, Family At War, by popular demand. Until mid May visitors can continue to enjoy this 1940s themed exhibition which looks at the world of the fictional Lawley family during the Second World War. Visitors can find out more about life on the home front in Worcestershire including rationing, the Home Guard, evacuees and local hospital camps and explore how the average family did their bit to keep the country running, support those on the front line and ensure victory for the Allies. From the end of May until Spring 2013 the new exhibition will be 'Wigs, Waistcoats and Wild Behaviour - from elegance to excess in Georgian Britain'. Find out about the elegant fashions, extravagant taste and wild behaviour of the Georgians. See beautiful examples of costume, home furnishings, books and other items from the Georgian era including a stunning Sedan Chair. Get involved by designing your own Georgian library or trying a Georgian make over, but remember beauty is in the eye of the beholder...

Great Hall and Saloon (included in the normal entry price, open on Wednesdays and weekends from 1 April - 30 September).

The museum also offers a varied events programme providing fun and informative days out for all the family, including kids activity days, a Festival of Transport, Murder Mystery nights, Christmas weekends and many more ...

And don’t miss the programme of walks and talks about a range of fascinating subjects linked to the Castle and Museum.  

For further details : Telephone 01299 250416. Email mueum@worcestershire.gov.uk www.worcestershire.gov.uk/museum

Also, for 2012 Museum visitors will be able to see the Castle's State Rooms, the magnificent

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AVONCROFT MUSEUM

Open the door on history! Avoncroft Museum is a unique home for historic buildings which have been rescued from demolition and rebuilt in a beautiful corner of Worcestershire’s rural countryside.

Explore the winding pathways of this tranquil open-air site and discover the secret histories of the people of the West Midland’s through the collection of regional buildings in which they lived, played, worked and worshipped.

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Avoncroft Edwardian Tea Room

Visit the new Edwardian Tea Room for a wonderful lunch or afternoon tea on your visit. There is a variety of great tasting food available which is locally sourced where possible. For those with a sweet tooth there is a large range of cakes and as an insider though the best cake of all is Nick’s homemade Caramel Shortcake which just melts in your mouth and is already building a loyal following!

What will you see? The collection includes houses, farm buildings and machinery including a working windmill, industrial workshops, a tin chapel, prison cell block and the biggest collection of historic telephone boxes in the country. All the buildings are open for you to go inside and explore. Around the site you’ll also find a traditional cider orchard, gardens, a farm pond, model railway, wildflower meadow and play areas as well as plenty of open space for either relaxing, picnicking or letting off steam.

Free Parking – Shop – Picnic Area – Tea Room – Play Area

Telephone 01527 831363 www.avoncroft.org.uk

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MUSEUM OF ROYAL WORCESTER

A Wonderful day Out

A Royal day out

British heritage design is thoroughly in vogue, and brands like Royal Worcester Porcelain lead the pack. With its rich history and timeless designs, demand is still high for the high quality goods by collectors and homemakers alike.

Royal Worcester porcelain is steeped in a history that spans two and a half centuries and this magnificent legacy is reflected in the stunning designs that can be viewed at the museum in the historic Cathedral city of Worcester.

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The history of Royal Worcester

The Company was as established in 1751 and its entrepreneurial owners encouraged employees to learn through apprenticeships; skills were then passed from generation to generation and a great sense of community evolved.

In 1934 an enthusiastic collector, Charles Dyson Perrins, of Lee & Perrins, purchased Royal Worcester and set up a Charitable Trust to unite the factory collection with his own, forming world’s largest and most comprehensive collection of Worcester Porcelain.

Princess Elizabeth with Charles Dyson Perrins in 1951, when she opened the Museum


The Museum was opened by the Queen (then Princess Elizabeth), a year before her Coronation, in 1951.

The Royal Worcester Museum Experience

The museum galleries transport you to the 18th Century, where the first designs were inspired by images from the Far East. The wealthy Victorians saw an explosion of decorative expression, whilst the volatile 20th century documented numerous economic and cultural changes.

Dudley Service 1865

and offers access to some of the rarest items in their china and archive stores.

Celebrated Royal Worcester trained artists regularly work in the galleries and delight in giving visitors a first hand account of their work and special commissions.

British history in your home At the museum shop you can purchase Royal Worcester China and porcelain entirely made at the original factory site in Worcester. Knowledgeable staff are available to help you find a piece to complete your set, source a collector’s item, or commission a personalised gift.

Figure making circa 1900'

The collections are as much about people as about porcelain, they contain over 8,000 items of porcelain, hand painted pattern books, photographs and film. An exceptional audio library charts the colourful history of the company and the living memories of its workers and touchingly recalls life before electricity, production during the Second World War and the introduction of equal pay through recorded interviews with factory workers.

Your visit to Royal Worcester

The Museum has an excellent reputation for welcoming groups and special interest visitors

Japanese Lady

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In addition to the increasingly popular new works, gilded and painted by past Royal Worcester Artists, the shop has a large selection of vintage and antique Royal Worcester items for sale. .

Hire the Museum

The magnificent backdrop of displays offers a unique venue for wedding receptions, private parties, dinners and corporate functions and excellent caterers serve delicious refreshments on superb Royal Worcester china for every special occasion.

Telephone 10905 21247 www.museumofroyalworcester.org info@museumofroyalworcester.org

. Royal Worcester pattern books for a floral dessert service c.1912

R.A. Austin

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LLANDRINDOD WELLS VICTORIAN FESTIVAL

18TH - 26TH AUGUST 2012 OVER 200 EVENTS PACKED

INTO NINE FUN-FILLED DAYS FOR ALL THE FAMILY

!

Tel: (01597) 823441

www.victorianfestival.co.uk Victorian Festival Office Wadham House Middleton Street Llandrindod Wells Powys LD1 5DG

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THE ELGAR BIRTHPLACE MUSEUM & VISITOR CENTRE Improved Displays & Visitor Facilities for 2012

New interactive displays, an improved reception and shop area and a new café bar all await visitors in 2012 thanks to grants from the Heritage Lottery Fund and The Foundation for Sport and the Arts.

This popular Museum which welcomes thousands of visitors a year has updated its visitor facilities providing something new for everyone to enjoy. In the newly designed Visitor Centre you can now explore Elgar’s life and musical development through new interactive exhibitions featuring old film and photographs which transport visitors back to Elgar’s Victorian and Edwardian past and breathe life into the fascinating objects on display. New display cabinets provide the perfect showcase for special exhibitions, starting this year with the first showing of newly acquired items to the collection and continuing with a look at Elgar and royalty.

The picturesque Birthplace Cottage, where Elgar was born in 1857, still retains its unique charm and remains the highlight of any visit to the museum. Here you can capture the atmosphere of Elgar’s “study” and see objects, including his desk, which he would have used daily throughout his composing life. In other rooms you can discover Elgar’s family, his varied hobbies and his extensive travels abroad.

In the delightful cottage garden you can sit with Elgar as he takes in the view towards the Malvern Hills. End your visit by browsing in the shop or relaxing in the new café bar area where you can enjoy Elgar’s wonderful music over morning coffee or afternoon tea. Museum entry also includes a free audio guide with an introduction to the museum by world renowned mezzo-soprano Dame Janet Baker and an introductory video.

The Museum also has a varied events programme which ranges from regular talks, concerts and exhibitions. Events for the family include quizzes, trails and the occasional workshop. These events take place in the Carice Elgar Room, a multifunction room which is also available for private hire.

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Groups are always welcome and special benefits are in place to make these visits unique. There are Joint Visits with other local tourist attractions in the area and bespoke visits based around the Museum and Elgar. A “Behind the Scenes� visit especially designed for groups concentrates on the work of the archivist and how we look after our collection. For groups of 25 or more evening visits can be arranged. The Museum is located 3 miles west of Worcester, just off the A44, a few minutes from Junction 7 of the M5 motorway. WR2 6RH

Opening Times 2012: The Museum is open daily 11am to 5pm (last admission 4.15pm). Closed 24th December 2012 to 31st January 2013 inclusive.

Telephone 01905 333224 www.elgarmuseum.org twitter www.twitter.com/elgarbirthplace www.facebook.com/elgarbirthplace

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THE SEVERN VALLEY RAILWAY AND THE ENGINE HOUSE AT HIGHLEY

It’s amazing how quickly a new attraction can seem as though it has been there for years. This is clearly the case with The Engine House, the Visitor & Education Centre at Highley on the Severn Valley Railway. Although it actually only opened at Easter 2008, it has already become an essential part of a visit to the Railway.

The SVR celebrated it’s 40th anniversary last year and on May 23rd, it was 40 years to the day when the first public steam train departed from Bridgnorth for the then terminus at Hampton Loade. There were various celebratory events during the year and The Engine House played a full part in them, including hosting displays and exhibitions marking this remarkable milestone. Bus Service : 125 - BRIDGNORTH - KIDDERMINSTER 436 - BRIDGNORTH - SHREWSBURY

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The Engine House

© Debbie Piggott

Perhaps the most surprising exhibit is the first item you see. At the entrance sits a Morris Minor, which although it seems incongruous, actually acts as a reminder of the role of the motor car in the demise of the railway branch line. The building can house up to 10 locomotives which are displayed long with special sound effects and dry ice. You can explore the engines - there is even wheelchair access to one of them - and both from the gallery above, and from ground level (which is actually below the normal platform height) you can really appreciate the size and power of these engines. Other exhibits inside include an illustration of the restoration work, an explanation of how a


The Engine House at Highley

steam locomotives works and a re-creation of the founding meeting of the SVR in the Coopers Arms pub in Kidderminster.

It is a very accessible visitor centre with something for the whole family; there are babychanging facilities, an outdoor play area and a very spacious outdoor picnic table area. Don’t forget to visit Buffers Cafe Restaurant and watch the trains go by as you eat at a table on the spacious outdoor balcony, which has great views of the valley, the river and the railway!

Make sure you break your journey there and spend some time at The Engine House at Highley – when it is combined with a relaxing journey along the whole Severn Valley Railway, it makes for a great day out on the line !

Special Events 2012 • A Victorian Weekend - May 19th & 20th • Bridgnorth Station Gala - June 16th & 17th • Step Back to the 1940s - June 23-24th & June 30-1st July • Peep behind the Scenes - July 21st & 22nd • Steam & Whistle activity Club - August, selected dates • Bridgnorth Beer Festival - September 6-8th • On the Buses - September 9th • Autumn Steam Gala - September 21st - 23rd • Diesel Enthusiasts Gala - October 4th - 6th • The Jazz Train - October 27th • Halloween Specials - October 20th - 28th • Remembrance Day Service - November 11th • Santa Steam Specials - December 1st, 2nd, 8th, 9th, 16th, 22nd & 23rd

Telephone 01299-403816 for the SVR: or 01746-862387 for The Engine House: Visit www.svr.co.uk

Up close at The Engine House

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WEST MIDLAND SAFARI PARK

West Midland Safari and Leisure Park has a host of fantastic family fun on offer that combines a four-mile, self-drive Safari, with Discovery Trail, African Village, the UK’s largest Lemur Walkthrough; Meerkats and Amusement Area, to provide around 1700 magical animal encounters and some great animal inspired attractions.

The safari covers around 150 acres and is lavish with some of the greatest species known to man - Indian Rhino; the UK’s largest pride of rare and mysterious White Lions; White Tigers; Giraffe as tall as a double-decker bus; Elephants; African Rhino that freely roam the animal reserves; Mischievous African Wild Dogs; North American Timber Wolves and Cheetah – the

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fastest animals in the world - to name just a few. Discovery Trail - showcases a Sea Lion Show; Twilight Cave with free flying bats, Seaquarium, Mark O’Shea’s Reptile World, Creepy Crawlies and friendly animal encounters.

The Park’s African themed interactive Village comes complete with village ‘huts’ and an African home that allows visitors to peek behind the scenes to catch a glimpse of what life could be like in an African Village. There are also plenty of friendly animal encounters that include the opportunity to feed some of the free range Somali Sheep, Pygmy Goats and Cameroon Sheep.


Meerkat Mayhem, also located within the African Village, has glass walls to allow the perfect viewing opportunity of these highly interesting and often amusing little animals.

The African Village encompasses “Walking with Lemurs” an exciting exhibit that is home to a variety of Lemur that include Ring Tailed, White-Front Brown and Red Bellied – all native of Madagascar and totally free range at the Park and located in natural woodland, beside a centuries old lake. West Midland Safari Park is not just about animals. Their Amusement Area, which is situated at the lakeside, plays host to a variety of family orientated rides, including water rides, namely the Zambezi Water Splash and Wild River Rapids. Others include Venom, The Black Fly, Rhino Rollercoaster and the Twister.

What’s more the Park has a great line up of seasonal events too, with late night opening throughout in August, Spooky Spectacular for October half term, a magnificent Bonfire and fireworks event in November, wild winter weekends to bridge the gap between winter and spring, culminating in Santa Safari - a Christmas Wonderland that starts in December.

Telephone 01299 402114 www.wmsp.co.uk

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THE

SPACEGUARD CENTRE

The Spaceguard Centre is a working astronomical observatory that specialises in Near Earth Objects (NEOs); asteroids and comets that could potentially hit the Earth. You might have seen the movies “Deep Impact” and “Armageddon”, but the threat of NEOs hitting the Earth is more real than most people realise. The Spaceguard Centre offers the opportunity for people to visit and find out about the possibility of a genuine “Deep Impact”, and what we can do to stop such an event.

samples from impact craters. The Spaceguard Centre is an intriguing place and a great day out for anyone.

A guided tour takes you around all of the facilities at the Spaceguard Centre, looking at what we do, why we do it and how. You will learn about the threat that asteroids and comets pose to the Earth and how we could protect not just ourselves but all life on the planet.

We have a unique indoor observatory with a 13 inch telescope and a robotic telescope system capable of tracking asteroids and comets that could be a threat to the Earth. We also have a small planetarium and an orrery. There are many more fascinating exhibits such as meteorites and

There are conducted tours of the Centre every day except Mondays and Tuesdays (we are open on Bank Holidays though) at 10.30 am (May to September only), 2 pm and 4 pm. Tours last for about 1 ½ hours and cost £6 for adults and £3 for children (under 15). We advise visitors to ring ahead, just to make sure that we have places of the relevant tour, as we can only take limited numbers (25). School parties are welcome by prior arrangement.

Telephone 01547 520247 e-mail: mail@spaceguarduk.com www.spaceguarduk.com

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2012 Herefordshire & Worcestershire Signpost Magazine  

Annual county tourist guide - full of features on things to do and places to go

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