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KIDS GO FREE!

2018 RACING FIXTURES city day

ladies day

Wednesday 9 May

Thursday 10 May

MBNA

HALEWOOD

Children aged 17 and under are eligible to attend all racedays at Chester completely FREE of charge

188bet

chester cup day Friday 11 May

SPORTINGBET

ROMAN DAY

Summer Saturday

LADIES EVENING

Saturday 26 May

Saturday 16 June

Friday 29 June

MATTHEW CLARK

MR GREEN

SIGNATURE LIVING

Summer FESTIVAL

LADIES & GENTS EVENING

CITY PLATE DAy

Saturday 30 June

Friday 13 July

Saturday 14 July

STELLA ARTOIS

MBNA

FOXY BINGO

MIDSUMMER MEETING

FAMILY FUNDAY

LADIES day

Saturday 28 July

Sunday 5 August

Saturday 1 September

MBNA

AUTUMN FESTIVAL

32RED

AUTUMN FESTIVAL

GOLDEN SQUARE SHOPPING CENTRE

Friday 14 September

Saturday 15 September

Saturday 29 September

POLO FIXTURES

SEASON FINALE

Friday 8 & Saturday 9 June Friday 7 & Saturday 8 September

Tickets are available from £10 I Hospitality packages available from £50*

01244 304 600 I chester-races.com *

Prices are per person +VAT at the current prevailing rate, based on a White Horse Garden Package.


VISIT CHESTER RACECOURSE ALL YEAR ROUND

With 15 days of racing, two weekends of polo and 365 days of dining, there’s always something happening on the Roodee The Racecourse, Chester, CH1 2LY chester-races.com I 01244 304 600

Chester Racecourse I Chester Polo 1539 Restaurant & Bar I The White Horse Gastro Pub


STYLISH SHOPPING IN THE HEART OF CHESTER

MANAGING DIRECTOR

Colin Cameron COMMERCIAL DIRECTOR

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WELCOME TO CHESHIRE

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21/03/2018 10:50

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FRONT COVER IMAGES: ©CHESTER ZOO; ADOBESTOCK; ING IMAGE; SHUTTERSTOCK.COM

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CONTENTS

48 hours

Our favourite ideas for a weekend away in Cheshire... Page 28

Shopping

Chester claims a unique shopping experience... Page 32

48

28 12

CONTENTS Welcome...................................................................................... 09 Cheshire is a county like no other!

History all around.......................................................................10 If you’re interested in the past, there’s plenty to occupy you here.

Let’s go there............................................................................... 12 Whatever the time of year, and whatever the weather, there’s always plenty to do here.

©CHESTER ZOO; ADOBESTOCK; ARENA PHOTO UK/SHUTTERSTOCK.COM; CHESTER RACECOURSE; PETER COOK/STORYHOUSE

If you’re only here for 48 hours.............................................. 28 You can pack a lot into a couple of days – try this itinerary to make the most of it.

Like to shop? You’ll love it here............................................. 32 High street chains, one-off independents and quirky specialists – they’re all waiting for the shopaholic.

Ten reasons to love this region.............................................. 46 There are dozens of reasons to love it here – check out a few of our favourites.

A taste of Cheshire – and the world...................................... 48 Top-end fine dining, adventurous independents and a great range of ethnic cuisine means you’ll never go hungry here.

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10 WELCOME TO CHESHIRE


Joseph Benjamin Restaurant

One of Chester’s most popular independent restaurants, Joseph Benjamin is run by two brothers and made its name providing exceptional quality food and impeccable service in an unfussy, unpretentious style. Winner of many local and national awards (including a coveted Michelin ‘Bib Gourmand’, one of only a handful in the North), their regularly-changing menus and inspirational wine list make this a must-visit in the city. Perfect for a lunchtime salad or sandwich pit stop as well as the full three-course experience, Joseph Benjamin is an inspiring take on the local neighbourhood bistro and perfect for any occasion.

138 Northgate Street, Chester, Cheshire CH1 2HT T. 01244 344 295 www.josephbenjamin.co.uk

PORTA tapas bar

Owners Joe and Ben Wright, responsible for the spectacular Joseph Benjamin Restaurant next door, opened this authentic tapas bar in 2012, creating a relaxing dining and drinking experience akin to the tapas bars of Barcelona. Informal seating and a no-bookings policy reinforce the buzzy, festival atmosphere, easily making it one of the most relaxing nights out in Chester. Classic tapas dishes are faultlessly represented including fine Jamon, tomato bread, padron peppers, croquetas and patatas bravas – all simple but delicious and incredibly moreish. No tapas bar is complete without superb sherries and wines; Porta keeps things simple with a regularly-changing chalk board of stunning Spanish examples. 140 Northgate Street | Chester | CH1 2HT (next to Joseph Benjamin Restaurant)

Open from 5pm every night (last food orders 10.30pm) No bookings

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CONTENTS

Property

Cheshire was recently voted the third happiest place to live... Page 80

Nightlife

This is the partying ground for the rich and famous... Page 76

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56 Ten things you must do........................................................... 56 There are loads of things to do here – make sure you don’t miss these.

A region at the heart of art....................................................... 58

68

There’s a rich cultural history on offer in Cheshire.

Our sporting life......................................................................... 66 Whether you want to watch or take part, there’s plenty on offer here.

Getting here and getting around............................................ 68 ADOBESTOCK; FOTOLIA; JOHN MARFLEET/SALE SHARKS; SHUTTERSTOCK.COM

Getting to and around this region couldn’t be easier.

Let’s explore................................................................................. 74 If you have some time to spare, why not head slightly further afield and see what lies on Cheshire’s doorstep?

Welcome to the night............................................................... 76 Whether it’s trendy clubs or old-fashioned pubs, you’ll have lots of fun here – with a bit of star-spotting thrown in.

If you’re planning to stay longer............................................ 80 People come to Cheshire for many reasons – and stay for a lot more!

We’re open for business........................................................... 82 Cheshire – and Chester in particular – has a long and fascinating business heritage.

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WELCOME

WELCOME

©VISITBRITAIN/THOMAS HEATON; SHUTTERSTOCK.COM

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hank you for choosing to visit Cheshire where traditional English country life happily exists alongside chic shopping and Michelinstarred restaurants. We hope you will have a chance to take a good look around Chester, acknowledged as one of the prettiest cities in Europe. It is completely unique with its black and white timbered buildings, a walkable Roman wall that encircles the town, the famous “Rows”, England’s oldest racecourse, an impressive Cathedral that is free to everyone and a beautiful river frontage much loved by rowers. Chester is also a vibrant place to shop and has many lovely places to eat or just enjoy a glass of wine in the sunshine. Just outside Chester you will find Chester Zoo, one of Europe’s finest, and home to many endangered species, and Cheshire Oaks, the UK’s largest designer outlet village – a must for shopaholics. Further afield you can enjoy villages with designer boutiques such as Tarporley and Alderley Edge, small towns with foodie markets and festivals such as Nantwich and Macclesfield, and marinas where you can hire a boat and really enjoy the countryside nice and slowly. Cheshire is famous for its gardens, and Tatton and Arley Hall are just two of the many to be enjoyed. And if you enjoy something more challenging, get the wind in your hair in the Cheshire Peak District – don’t forget to stop off for a pint at the Bollington Brewery. When you are done with exploring, relax with a game of golf at one of our many excellent golf courses or golf resorts, or wind down in one of our gorgeous spas. Have a great unwind in Cheshire and don’t forget to give us your feedback via Twitter @MktgCheshire. l

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“FURTHER AFIELD YOU CAN ENJOY VILLAGES WITH DESIGNER BOUTIQUES SUCH AS TARPORLEY AND ALDERLEY EDGE”

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE


HISTORY & HERITAGE

HISTORY ALL AROUND! If you’re interested in the past, there’s plenty to occupy you here

DEWA ROMAN EXPERIENCE; SHUTTERSTOCK.COM

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known for its leather industry and there was still was also still a wool industry and a thriving wine port. To this day, Chester Racecourse is Britain’s oldest sporting venue in continual use. The first race at the Roodee took place in 1539, replacing the famously bloody Shrove Tuesday football game, and the Roodee has been synonymous with the city ever since. During the Napoleonic Wars from 1793-1815, the Chester shipbuilding industry boomed as did lead working, and the surviving shot tower was built in 1800. But Chester was not transformed by the industrial revolution in the way other northern towns were, remaining a genteel place popular with well-to-do tourists. In 1866 the affluent Grosvenor Hotel was built. More growth was to come, with the building of the Grosvenor Bridge in 1833 and the central railway station shortly afterwards. Life in Victorian Chester gradually improved with the Grosvenor Park which was laid out in 1867 and a new Town Hall, followed by the first free public library, the Grosvenor Museum and the Eastgate Clock. In the 1920s and 30s, houses that still remain today were built to replace the recently-demolished disease-ridden slums known as ‘the dens of iniquity’. 1931 saw the arrival of Chester Zoo, opened by George Mottershead who dreamed of building the world’s first zoo without bars. Over the next years, the Grosvenor Shopping Centre was built along with St Martin’s Gate and an inner ring road in 1972 transformed the city to how we can recognise it today. l

hen it comes to UK cities, few have such a rich history as Chester. Founded originally as a fort named Deva by the Romans in around 75AD, the city was the scene of battles between warring Welsh and Saxon kingdoms throughout the post-Roman years until the Saxons strengthened the fort against raiding Danes. Roman Chester was also the time when the city’s future foundations were laid by craftsmen, including bakers, butchers, carpenters and blacksmiths. Roman Chester was also a busy little port and luxuries such as wine and finely made pottery were imported. The 7,000-seat amphitheatre, which still remains the largest in the country, entertained locals who came to watch gladiators, cock fighting and bear baiting. However in the 4th century Roman civilisation began to break down, and people began to drift away from towns like Chester, leaving them in many cases, totally abandoned. It is still unclear what exactly happened to Chester when the Romans left, but soon after, England and Wales split into rival kingdoms. By the 7th century, the city was invaded by the Saxons who gave Chester its name. Streets were laid out in the 10th century, and people were encouraged to come and live in the city. Soon, Chester was a flourishing place boasting a mint and a weekly marketplace, and a population of 2,000. Over the years, many of its most famous landmarks were built, including the weir across the River Dee, the Kaleyard Gate, and the Water Tower. In 1541 Chester Abbey became Chester Cathedral and population steadily grew. Chester was

“FOUNDED ORIGINALLY AS A FORT NAMED DEVA BY THE ROMANS IN AROUND 75AD, CHESTER WAS THE SCENE OF BATTLES BETWEEN WARRING WELSH AND SAXON KINGDOMS THROUGHOUT THE POST-ROMAN YEARS”

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WELCOME TO CHESHIRE


DAYS OUT

LET’S GO THERE! Whatever the time of year, and whatever the weather, there’s always plenty to do here

ADOBESTOCK

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The sandy beaches make you feel a million miles away from Chester. A new addition is the recently-restored Penguin Island, which has been revamped to include new bigger viewing windows, state-of-the-art filtration systems in the pool and renewed nesting facilities. Be sure to stop by and watch the Humbolt penguin colony race through the water! In the heart of the city is Chester Cathedral where highlights include the popular visitor attraction “Cathedral at Heights”, allowing a behind-the-scenes view of the magnificent building, including a 216 steps climb to the top of the bell tower (at 125 feet the highest accessible point in the city). Visitors are able to get up close to marvellous stained glass, peer down on 14th-century quire stalls and Victorian organ, amble along galleries, and take in a panoramic view of the city and five counties from the roof. And the stunning cathedral gardens now play host to a bespoke Falconry Centre and Nature Reserve where you can witness one of the most amazing aerial displays imaginable. Nowhere else will you be able to see some of the most spectacular birds of prey up close, such as p16

t is one of the top zoos in the world and a leader in conservation of rare and endangered species. So visitors should set aside a whole day to visit Chester Zoo’s 20,000-plus animals from 500 different species, set in 125 acres of parkland, including black rhinos, giraffes, elephants, lions, tigers, reptiles, birds and bats. Daily talks by keepers, animals being fed, and children’s faces painted as lions or tigers are just some of the things you can expect. A monorail ride gives visitors an aerial view that can help them plan a tour or just catch sight of animals they haven’t managed to see. 2018 marks the third year of the zoo’s £40m exotic Islands project, and it’s one of the attraction’s most popular features. You truly feel like you’re actually in the islands of the Philippines, Papua New Guinea, Bali, Sumatra, Sumba and Sulawesi as you get to explore the amazing tropical environments on your own unique wildlife expedition. Other Island attractions include the Monsoon Forest and the Lazy River Boat Trip which allows you to get a different view of each individual island, and even sample cuisine from each one.

“IT’S DEFINITELY WORTH A VISIT TO THE ZOO’S £40M EXOTIC ISLANDS PROJECT, A RECREATION OF THE ISLANDS OF THE PHILIPPINES, PAPUA NEW GUINEA, BALI, SUMATRA, SUMBA AND SULAWESI”

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WELCOME TO CHESHIRE


• Antique, vintage & modern furniture • Oak, mahogany & pine • Edwardian, Victorian, Art Deco and retro to the 70s • Cabinets full of Beswick, Moorcroft, Doulton, Worcester, silver jewellery and crystal • Home accessories: vintage, antique & modern mirrors & lamps plus china & tea sets • Daily craft demonstrations • Morning coffee • Lunch & afternoon teas – where homemade is our speciality We are proud to use fresh produce FIND US AT Afonwen, Near Caerwys, CH7 5UB Only 5 mins off the A55 Junction 31

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T: 01352 720965 01352 720797 (Edenshine) E: antiques@afonwen.co.uk W: www.afonwen.co.uk

OPENING TIMES Tuesday-Sunday: 9:30am-5:30pm Open Bank Holiday Mondays

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Visit Nantwich A beautiful town, adorned with boutiques, antiques, cafes, pubs and restaurants and steeped in history

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antwich is a charming historical market town, set beside the River Weaver, with a rich history, a wealth of beautiful timber framed buildings, a quaint town square with memorial tribute, a wide range of speciality shops and one of the finest medieval town churches in Britain, St Mary’s. Visitors will find inns offering a warm welcome, fine restaurants and cosy cafés. Nantwich offers a wealth of unique ideas for shopping, in over 200 specialist stores and a longestablished traditional market. The relaxed atmosphere, ample car parking, individual customer service and vast choice of goods offer a most enjoyable shopping experience.

Stretch your legs on a pleasant walk from the town centre, taking in the Riverside Park, the Shropshire Union Canal and the historic Welsh Row or discover some of the fascinating history of the town brought to life by Nantwich Museum. A vibrant town, Nantwich is host to a number of high profile events which attract thousands of visitors every year, transforming it into a town of friendly merriment.

Full details of events in Nantwich can be obtained from the Information Centre or online at: www.nantwichtowncouncil.gov.uk

“A vibrant town, Nantwich is host to a number of high profile events which attract thousands of visitors every year, transforming it into a town of friendly merriment”


PAUL M/UNSPLASH; VISITENGLAND/MARKETING CHESHIRE

DAYS OUT

“NOWHERE ELSE WILL YOU BE ABLE TO SEE SOME OF THE MOST SPECTACULAR BIRDS OF PREY UP CLOSE, SUCH AS OWLS, FALCONS HAWKS AND VULTURES – RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE OF THE CITY CENTRE!”

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE

owls, falcons hawks and vultures – right in the middle of Chester City Centre! As well as daily flying displays, you can also use the large green space to enjoy a picnic and for the children to run around and play whilst exploring natural habitats. Last but not least, it’s definitely worth popping in to see the mammoth display of the cathedral – made entirely out of LEGO, using 350,000 bricks. Just outside Chester is the Blakemere Craft Centre in Northwich where you can also get to fly all kinds of different birds. But that’s not all you can get here. You can try your hand at some amazing activities all the family are sure to enjoy with Cheshire Outdoors. Whether it’s archery, segway, laser clay shooting or crazy golf that you prefer, this is the place to get out into the fresh air and have a go at something fun and exciting. There is guaranteed to be something that suits everyone here. Over in Warrington, it’s well worth a visit to the stunning Walton Hall and Gardens. Wander through the impressive specimen trees and shrubs which feature an extensive display of rhododendron and azaleas in early summer. It also boasts ornamental ponds, resplendent rose gardens, herbaceous borders and a children’s zoo where you can watch the animals being fed. Another great family day out is Halton Miniature

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Railway in Runcorn, which is known throughout the world to all enthusiasts. Staffed by volunteers, it has a track gauge of seven and a quarter inches, and operates a passenger service every Sunday afternoon throughout the year in the Town Park, Stockham Lane, Runcorn. Sweet tooth? Then you’ve got to try retro sweet shop and party venue Spavens in Chester which opened a branch in Hoole at the end of 2017. Following on from the huge success of its first store in Mold, North Wales, you’ll soon see why Spavens brands itself ‘the best sweet shop ever’. Perfect for kids who get to paint their own sweet jar then choose from a large choice of sweets in the shop to fill it, and afterwards can choose a ceramic or wooden object to decorate and enjoy a slush, crêpe and ice cream before going home with a goody bag. And Spavens also caters for adult parties where it’s a similar routine, differing only by the fact adults can bring their own wine and beer to enjoy while they paint! Of course, as Cheshire is a county of canals – there are two key tourist attractions to delight lovers of waterways. The National Waterways Museum at Ellesmere Port has been a firm favourite to the public for decades. Boasting a unique fleet of historic boats and displays, it tells the fascinating story of Britain’s canals and waterways over the years. p18

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Tel. 01829 760 288 / 07584 046 770

Open 9am – 5pm, Mon – Sat. Closed Sun.

www.reclaimedworld.com

Reclamation ∙ Salvage ∙ Antiques ∙ Vintage ∙ Home ∙ Garden ∙ Furniture ∙ Collectables ∙ Flooring ∙ Stone ∙ Timber

Reclaimed World, Tarporley Road (A49), Little Budworth, Cheshire, CW6 9ES.

Based close to Tarporley, in the heart of the beautiful Cheshire countryside, Reclaimed World is a unique three-acre family run antiques, salvage and reclamation emporium. In addition to our huge selection of reclaimed stone, wood flooring and traditional salvage materials, our beautiful showrooms and grounds are brimming with fabulous treasures for your home and garden.


CHESTER RACECOURSE; VISITENGLAND/MARKETING CHESHIRE

DAYS OUT

“ANYONE WHO HAS EVER FANCIED THEMSELVES AS TARZAN MUST VISIT DELAMERE FOREST, WHERE THERE IS A TREE-TOP ADVENTURE OF ZIP WIRES, ROPE LADDERS AND HIGH WIRES”

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE

The Anderton Boat Lift at Northwich was called one of the Seven Wonders of the Mechanical World when it opened in 1875. Re-opened after a public campaign in 2002, it lifts boats 50 feet between the River Weaver and the Trent and Mersey Canal using two huge counter-balanced water filled containers (caissons) – as one is raised to the canal the other is lowered to the Weaver. Visitors can take a 30-minute boat trip through the lift and surrounding waterways. The Crocky Trail is a one-mile long outdoor adventure trail offering a series of activities with mazes, swings, slides, bridges and tunnels along the way, although there is always a way around the more challenging obstacles. This is a mud and fun day in fields at Waverton on the outskirts of Chester – it’s for adventurous families and children and definitely not a sanitised theme park softened by health and safety regulations. Budding scientists should pay a visit to the Catalyst Science Discovery Centre in Widnes – an interactive centre that aims to make science exciting and accessible to people of all ages and abilities. Here you can find out how the products of chemistry are used in everyday life – from medicines to Meccano, and learn about the ‘chemistry’ industry and its role in our lives, past, present and future. There are over 40 hands-on exhibits allowing you to investigate how modern materials and chemicals are made. Elsewhere, and you don’t need to leave Cheshire

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to swim with sharks – you can do it at the Blue Planet Aquarium, Ellesmere Port. The centre has Europe’s largest collection of sharks which can be safely viewed by visitors walking through 71 metres of underwater tunnel. The aquarium has more than 100 exhibits and thousands of animals from around the world. It is a safe bet that a visit to Chester Racecourse will provide lots of fun in a great atmosphere. Horses have competed at Chester’s picturesque Roodee course since 1539, making it the oldest racetrack in England. Race days have developed into an enormous fun social occasion and are a wonderful time to visit the city. Visitors will spot football players, soap stars and famous faces while racing purists mix easily with families, and L-plated brides-to-be and their entourages have a laugh with corporate partygoers. There are four-legged friends to admire at the Cotebrook Shire Horse Centre near Tarporley. There’s something magnificent about these gentle giants, descendants of animals which were used to carry knights in armour, drag heavy guns through muddy battlefields, and which once provided the industrial muscle in fields and roads. The 50-acre site also has wildlife and an adventure walk which takes about an hour. Anyone who has ever fancied themselves as Tarzan must visit Go Ape at Delamere Forest – a tree-top adventure of zip wires, rope ladders and high p23

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The Ice Cream Farm, Newton Lane, Tattenhall, Chester, Cheshire, CH3 9NE

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www.TheIceCreamFarm.co.uk

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE


STOKE-ON-TRENT Stoke-on-Trent is a unique city affectionately known as The Potteries. With its rich industrial heritage it has respectfully claimed the title of World Capital of Ceramics. The city boasts a host of award-winning ceramic attractions, museums, and factory shops as well as outstanding family attractions and beautiful gardens. For information about great places to visit, things to see and do, fantastic events and accommodation in the area... Call 01782 236000 Email stoke.tic@stoke.gov.uk or go to visitstoke.co.uk

VISITSTOKE.CO.UK


Stoke-on-Trent

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onveniently positioned between Junctions 15 and 16 of the M6, Stoke-on-Trent is a city built on a history of industrial greatness and creative artistic flair. We’ve seen a resurgence of all things that made the city great. From pottery to performing arts and everything in between, we’re home to world-class attractions, incredible talents and creative businesses. The city boasts many ceramic visitor centres, award-winning museums, authentic factory tours, over 20 pottery shops, exciting family attractions, beautiful gardens and the exclusive Staffordshire Hoard. Visit World of Wedgwood to discover new perspectives, broaden horizons, and deepen your understanding of the world and its heritage and culture. Discover the story of Josiah Wedgwood and his lasting influence on industry, society and local infrastructure and then take a Factory Tour to see all aspects of the production processes and techniques. Try your hand at the potter’s wheel or create your own bone china tableware in the Decorating Studio. An attraction suitable for all ages, an opportunity to ‘learn by doing’, to shop, eat and explore… The history and heritage of the area, of course, is well preserved at numerous locations across the city including at Middleport Pottery and the award-winning Gladstone Pottery Museum, the most complete Victorian pottery factory in the UK, boasting interactive exhibitions and a “Flushed with Pride” tribute to toilets past, present and future! The Potteries Museum and Art Gallery is famous for housing the finest collection of Staffordshire ceramics in the world. These days, however, it

is also ‘home’ to the Staffordshire Hoard – the largest ever ‘find’ of Anglo-Saxon gold treasure in the UK – valued by the British Museum at £3.285 million. For the complete pottery experience, follow the Ceramics Trail and discover, learn, try and buy! www.ceramicstrail.co.uk World-famous backstamps such as Wedgwood, Moorcroft, Spode, Aynsley and Portmeirion, along with world-class designers, are the obvious reasons why almost everyone in the world will have already heard of Stoke-on-Trent. But even if the behindthe-scenes factory visits, and the opportunity to purchase some of the nation’s finest pottery and bone china remain a key reason for wanting to “make it” to The Potteries in the first place, it is still worthwhile delving a little deeper to discover what else there is on offer. Enjoy a great day out at the Trentham Estate for shopping and eating out, peace and quiet, fun and action! Visit the award-winning Trentham Gardens, which have matured into some of the finest gardens in Britain. Indulge yourself in some retail therapy at the Trentham Shopping Village with

shops, cafés, restaurants and the vast Trentham Garden Centre. Walk with 140 Barbary macaques at the Trentham Monkey Forest or take a high rope adventure at Aerial Extreme. The Trentham Estate has a great events programme throughout the year to suit everyone – from nature lovers, to the green fingered and active kids to music lovers – all set in a truly stunning setting. Stoke-on-Trent is home to incredible entertainment venues and outstanding theatres. These include the New Vic Theatre, the theatre in the round which has built a reputation for innovative productions of both new and classic works. The Cultural Quarter in the City Centre houses the Regent Theatre, a beautifully restored Art Deco theatre offering a high quality programme of grand opera, national ballet, drama, and West End musicals; and the Victoria Hall an outstanding concert hall offering a wide range of concerts, events, and stand-up comedians. For further details, head to www.visitstoke.co.uk and www.ceramicstrail.co.uk.


WELCOME TO CHESHIRE

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MARK CARLINE PHOTOGRAPHY; VISITENGLAND/MARKETING CHESHIRE

DAYS OUT

wires providing an exhilarating adventure with stunning views across Lake Linmere. And for anyone who hasn’t got a head for heights there is also mountain biking and forest walking – not to mention segways! Offering a more sedate experience are the many notable gardens in Cheshire which attract thousands of visitors each year. Arley Hall & Gardens between Northwich and Knutsford are amongst the finest in Britain, having been lovingly created by the same family over 250 years. Outstanding features are the renowned double herbaceous border, the avenue of giant Ilex columns and Victorian Rootree. If you have a penchant for brain teasers that set your heart pumping, why not now indulge in Chester’s very own ‘escape room’? Escapism Chester locks teams of 2-5 people into one of the live Escape Rooms – you’ll have to use your brain power and work as a team to escape within the allotted 60 minutes. What could be more fun? Cholmondeley Castle’s extensive ornamental gardens are dominated by a romantic Gothic castle, built in 1801 of local sandstone. The castle is not open to the public but there are wonderful gardens with lakeside and woodland walks, picnic site, children’s play area, farm animals and aviary birds. The gardens are only open on Wednesdays, Thursdays, Sundays and bank holidays from early April to the end of September.

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“THE JAPANESE GARDEN IS ONE OF THE FINEST IN EUROPE AND THE WALLED KITCHEN GARDEN PRODUCES HISTORIC VARIETIES OF FRUIT AND VEGETABLES”

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Ness Botanic Gardens are set on the banks of the River Dee with breathtaking views across to North Wales. These award-winning gardens boast a national and international reputation with flowers, shrubs and trees, in particular rhododendrons and azaleas and a national collection of sorbus. Tatton Park, near Knutsford, is one of the UK’s most impressive historic estates, with a stunning neo-Classical mansion, 1930s rare breeds farm, Tudor old hall and 50 acres of award-winning gardens. Reflecting over 200 years of design and history, visitors can enjoy the Italian garden, topiary, maze, ferney and rose garden. The Japanese Garden is one of the finest in Europe and the walled kitchen garden produces historic varieties of fruit and vegetables. A year-round programme of events includes the RHS Show Tatton Park, outdoor theatre and picnic concerts, food festival and country show. Little Moreton Hall, Britain’s most famous timber-framed, moated Tudor manor house, was the home of Mary Fitton, Maid of Honour to Elizabeth I and supposed “Dark Lady” of Shakespeare’s sonnets. There is a delightful historic Knot Garden and traditional fruit trees of apple, pear, medlar and quince. This National Trust property was used as one of the settings in the TV dramatisation of Daniel Defoe’s saucy romp, Moll Flanders. Back to the watery attractions, spring and summer present a wonderful opportunity to enjoy p27

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE


THE MID CHESHIRE COMMUNITY RAIL PARTNERSHIP

HACK GREEN SECRET NUCLEAR BUNKER

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Discover the secret world of nuclear government. For over 50 years this vast underground complex remained secret, hidden on the outskirts of a sleepy Cheshire town. Declassified in 1993, the 35,000 sq ft underground bunker would have been the centre of Regional Government had nuclear war broken out. It was built in the 1950s as part of a secret radar network code-named ‘ROTOR’. The bunker today offers a warm welcome to anyone looking for a different day out. Tons of authentic equipment in original settings fire the imagination, with an exciting glimpse into England’s dramatic Cold War past.

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Website: www.hackgreen.co.uk Telephone: 01270 629219 Sat nav post code: CW5 8AL

C h e s t er A n t i q u e s Fa i r

Welcome to Cheshire

Experience ChesterIn the footsteps of the Leg XX.v.v. (20th Legion)

Chester Racecourse, CH1 2LY

2018: O c t o be r 11 - 14 10.30am - 5pm 2019: February 7-10 & October 10-13

FINE ART

ANTIQUES

JEWELLERY

For people who like something fresh, interesting, factual and fun - a perspective on history that perhaps you haven't considered before, touring Chester with an authentic Roman Soldier guiding you on a light-hearted journey through Chester's Roman Heritage. Let us show you the hidden pieces of our past beneath the heart of Chester. City tours run daily, all year, 12pm & 3pm approx 1.5hrs except Sundays. Starting from the Visitor Information Centre. Suitable for ages, private and group bookings accepted.

For a Complimentary E-Ticket

For further information and bookings www.romantoursuk.com Tel 01978 761264 Mob: 07885 403485

please register your email on www.penman-fairs.co.uk Penman Fairs: 01825 744074. At the Fair: 07961 371961

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE

The Mid

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Relaxing Cruises on the River Dee in historic Chester and stunning rural Cheshire Daytime Cruises

Evening Cruises

On a Half Hour City Cruise you will sail past

Disco and BBQ Party Nights Afloat Cruise

spectacular properties and tranquil meadows,

most Friday and Saturday evenings year

while listening to informative commentary about

round. Plus Fish and Chip Cruises and Curry

the City sights. Sailing every 30 minutes, 11AM –

and Quiz Cruises.

5PM, April – October (plus selected dates

Alternatively, celebrate your special occasion

November – March, 11AM – 4PM).

with a Private Charter of one of our fleet.

The 2 Hour Iron Bridge Cruise is a relaxing

Bespoke private parties with a wide range of

journey from Chester through the Duke of

food, drinks and entertainment choices.

Westminster’s Estate, with breathtaking views

Prices & Booking Tickets

of a magical riverscape teaming with wildlife. Sailing 12 Noon and 2:30PM on weekends and selected dates in May, June and September as well as daily sailings in July and August.

Prices for all our cruises can be found on our website. Tickets can be purchased on boarding the boat.

Combine either of these cruises with a City Sightseeing Open Top Bus Tour, offering two great tours and all the famous sights. Make the most of your visit to Chester. A fantastic discount

Alternatively, book your cruise tickets online to save £££s (excludes already discounted combined boat and bus tickets).

awaits if you buy your Combined Boat and Bus

Cruises subject to weather, correct at time

Tour ticket on the boat.

of print.

Or join us for a delightful Vintage Afternoon Tea Cruise on Mother’s Day (31st March 2019), St.

Departure Point

George’s Day (23 April) or Grandparents’ Day

All cruises depart from Souters Lane,

(10th September 2018).

The Groves, Chester, CH1 1SZ/CH1 1SD.

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10%

Use the promo code “kingfisher” when booking online to get an extra 10% off Half Hour City Cruise, 2 Hour Cruise, Afternoon Tea Cruise, Fish & Chip Cruise or Curry & Quiz Cruise!

01244 325 394 | enquiries@chesterboat.co.uk | www.chesterboat.co.uk The Boating Station, Souters Lane, The Groves, Chester, CH1 1SZ/CH1 1SD


TAKE A TRIP THROUGH HISTORY

ENJOY A HERITAGE TRAIN RIDE THROUGH THE DEE VALLEY

Tel: 01978 860979

www.llangollen-railway.co.uk

Chester Road, Sandiway, Northwich, Cheshire CW8 2EB T: 01606 883261 W: blakemerevillage.com

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE

@BlakemereVillage

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@visitblakemere

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ADOBESTOCK; ARENA PHOTO UK/SHUTTERSTOCK.COM; MICHAEL D BECKWITH/UNSPLASH

DAYS OUT

“A CERTAIN HIT FOR YOUNG VISITORS IS CHESHIRE FARM ICE CREAM AT TATTENHALL – AND WITH 40-PLUS FLAVOURS, PLENTY OF ADULTS LOVE IT, TOO”

kingfishervisitorguides.com

boating on the River Dee, rowing boats and pedalos for the energetic or a choice of cruises on showboats Lady Diana and Mark Twain. Trips are 30 minutes or two hours and can also be combined with an open top bus tour of the city. Summer evening cruises are themed to include Abba hits and music from the 60s, 70s and 80s. Chester’s important historical credentials can be explored at the Dewa Roman Experience, just off Bridge Street, with its atmospheric reconstructions, genuine archaeological remains and also offers a Roman Soldier Patrol of the city. Deva (pronounced Dewa in Roman times) is the fortress built almost 2,000 years ago which lies beneath modern day Chester. Stroll along a reconstructed street, experiencing some of the sights, sounds and smells of life inside the Roman fortress. A certain hit for young visitors is Cheshire Farm Ice Cream at Tattenhall – and with 40-plus flavours, plenty of adults love it, too. There are outdoor play areas, an animal corner for children to meet the farm animals and watch cows being milked, kids’ quad bikes, and mini golf. And, thanks to a £4m investment, it is now known as the world’s largest family-friendly ice cream parlour adventure park. As well as the largest indoor sand and water play area in Europe, a ‘snowemitting’ life-size magical ice cream tree sits at the heart of this world of fun, which includes attractions

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all the family will love, such as Honeycomb Canyon, Fudge Farm, and the Fun Factory. Not far from the ice cream farm is the Cheshire Candle Factory where you can try your hand at the traditional craft of candle-making. There is also a range of activities for all age groups, including pottery painting, making spoon puppets, fridge magnets and badges at the factory in Burwardsley near Tattenhall. Families with young children will also find lots to do at Gulliver’s World Theme Park at Warrington where they will find more than 90 rides for youngsters aged 2-13. Parking and picnic areas are free. And explore beautiful rural Cheshire by visiting a working mill at Stretton Watermill and observing one of the country’s best preserved demonstration water powered corn mills. This attraction near Malpas consists of the working mill, an old 19th-century stable, which houses an exhibition, and pleasant grounds with a picnic area. Visitors to Stretton will benefit from the greatly improved access to the upper floor of the mill. The new landscaping and pathways offer views of the pond and the mill buildings and add to the charm of this idyllic rural setting. And after learning about the history of the mill, you can go on a fascinating tour around it. See the ancient wooden machinery in action, listen to stories, have a go at milling grain, work miniature models, wander around the displays or just relax and enjoy the beautiful countryside setting. l

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE


48 HOURS

IF YOU’RE ONLY HERE FOR 48 HOURS… You can pack a lot into a couple of days – try this itinerary to make the most of it

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE

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ADOBESTOCK; DAVID CLODE/UNSPLASH; VISITENGLAND/MARKETING CHESHIRE

“HEAD TO CHESTER’S DINING QUARTER ON PEPPER STREET FOR A CHOICE OF SEVERAL CUISINES FOR LUNCH”

kingfishervisitorguides.com

DAY ONE Cheshire is so beautiful with so much to offer that you’re spoiled for choice with just 48 hours to spare. If it’s history you’re most interested in, head to Chester’s ancient city walls to make the most of this picturesque walled city. You’ll see the Water Tower, the remains of the Roman amphitheatre, the tower where Charles I stood to watch the Battle of Rowton Moor, the much-photographed Eastgate Clock and the castle that was originally built by Chester’s very own Norman “Wolf”. Afterwards, explore the large variety of shops as you roam the magnificent streets which are lined with black and white Jacobean-style buildings, making sure to pay a visit to the stunning cathedral where you can not only observe its rich history, but you can also take a tower tour which truly enables you to immerse yourself in a unique blend of medieval and modern history. Reward yourself with afternoon tea in the old Cathedral Refectory, or if you’re still up for a stroll – enjoy a drink at the ancient (and haunted) Pied Bull pub just up the road. That’s if you’re not scared of meeting its resident ghost, John Davies, who was said to have died in the pub’s cellar in 1690. Chester has some fascinating art galleries – including The Watergate Street Gallery and the newly-opened Alison Bradley Gallery, which features some stunning local paintings, so make sure you have a browse.

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Head to the city’s newly-built Dining Quarter on Pepper Street for a choice of several cuisines for lunch, including Las Iguanas, Opera Grill, Americanthemed Coast to Coast and Mexican eatery Chimichanga. For a lighter bite, independentlyowned Ginger Wine Bar and Delicatessen is hugely popular with the locals. Head slightly out of the city to burn off your lunch at Caldy Valley Nature Park, a delightful small area of wetland, woodland and meadows which is perfect for an afternoon stroll. Not too far away is Delamere Forest, with its dry sandstone paths or gentle forest roads and trails which are suited for the less able or families with children. For something a little different you might want to try The Blue Planet Aquarium in nearby p31

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE


Fostering You can help them, whatever they’re going through. And we’ll help you.

Change a life by fostering a child. Visit barnardos.org. uk/fostering or call us today on:

0800 027 7280 Registered Charity Nos. 216250 and SC037605 17468nc16


48 HOURS

EVAN/TATTON PARK; MICHAEL D BECKWITH/UNSPLASH

Ellesmere Port. Ideal for families, you can get up close to awesome sharks and see real scuba divers in the daily feed shows in the centre’s Aquatheatre. There are plenty of food outlets to try in nearby Cheshire Oaks, but if you’re heading back to the city centre, take your pick from several cuisines. If Italian is your palate of choice, look no further than La Fattoria on Lower Bridge Street. Ask any local and they will say this is without doubt one of the finest Italian eateries outside of Italy itself. DAY TWO Make the most of one of Chester’s newest attractions – which is bound to be an unforgettable experience. The Sick to Death attraction is set inside two towers on the city’s ancient walls, just a short walking distance from the centre of town. Designed to transport visitors back through the gory history of medicine, Sick to Death features unique bone discoveries where you can re-live the plague-ridden, disease infected eras of the past. You’ll mingle with Chester’s infamous Plague Doctor, and view a series of interactive exhibitions that will shock, thrill and educate visitors of all ages.

kingfishervisitorguides.com

It’s a bit of a drive from Chester but you can’t visit Cheshire without going to Tatton Park in Knutsford. Welcoming more than 800,000 visitors a year, it boasts a stunning 19th-century mansion, 1,000 acres of parkland, a working rare breed farm and Tudor old hall. No wonder Tatton is regarded as one of Britain’s finest historic estates. Or why not visit the Lion Salt Works in Northwich? Lots of time and money (£10 millon to be precise) has been spent to provide a fascinating and fresh insight into the story of salt, brought to life with fun, interactive and imaginative educational exhibits. And while you’re in the area, grab some traditional pub fare at The Hayhurst Arms which combines classic British dishes with ingredients from around the world and is simply oozing with rural British charm. End your day back in Chester by sampling some afternoon tea at Oddfellows with its stunning, huge Georgian windows, before heading over to Chester Cathedral for weekly choral evensong in the Quire. It really is a wonderful way to round off a trip to our beautiful county. l

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“WELCOMING MORE THAN 800,000 VISITORS A YEAR, IT BOASTS A STUNNING 19TH-CENTURY MANSION, 1,000 ACRES OF PARKLAND, A WORKING RARE BREED FARM AND TUDOR OLD HALL”

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE


SHOPPING

LIKE TO SHOP? YOU’LL LOVE IT HERE! High street chains, one-off independents and quirky specialists – they’re all waiting for the shopaholic

CAROLINE ATTWOOD/CLEM ONOJEGHUO/ MIKE PETRUCCI/MITCH ROSEN/UNSPLASH

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hester can truly claim a unique shopping experience. Its famous medieval Rows have nothing to be compared with in the world. And the Three Old Arches at 48 Bridge Street dating back to the 13th century are believed to be the earliest surviving shop fronts in England. The Rows are covered pedestrian walkways at first floor level on four of Chester’s main streets – the original shopping mall. The city is a compact shopping delight for visitors, four main streets reaching out from The Cross towards the Roman walls that encircle its central area. A five minute walk will get you to most places – if you don’t look up. But the Rows, walls, fabulous architecture, street musicians and ornate Eastgate Clock – said to be second only to Big Ben in London for the number of times it is photographed – conspire to distract you. You could well find yourself drawn into the greetings shouted by the town crier at The Cross along with visitors from around the world. It makes for a leisurely stroll around the shops in and around Eastgate Street, Northgate Street, Watergate Street and Bridge Street, the Rows, the Grosvenor Shopping Centre and the hidden gems of Chester. Godstall Lane at Row level in Eastgate Street is a pedestrian alley with fashion shops and a bar/restaurant through to St Werburgh Street and Chester Cathedral. Its name refers to “God’s Place” and in medieval p36

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WELCOME TO CHESHIRE


of Northwich & Nantwich

NORTHWICH ORE DEPARTMENT ST

Platinum set top-quality tanzanite and diamond ring.

et, Northwich, 2-6 Witton Stre P e Cheshir CW9 5A 4 TEL 01606 4334

Other original designs are available at Balducci Jewellers. NANTWICH STOR

Balducci Jewellers

• COFFEE SHOP • COOKSHOP • GIFTS RFUMERY PE • • LINENS • MENSWEAR

E

2 Pepper Street, Nantwich, B Cheshire CW5 5A 65 TEL 01270 6238

12 The Cross Neston, South Wirral CH64 9UB Telephone 0151 336 5235

brattsonline.co

.uk

BRATTS0679 87x120mm WELCOME TO CHESHIRE AD 16-3.indd 1

10/04/2018 10:47

Like what you see…

Our superb visitor guides are packed with useful articles and information.

Follow us, like us, share us on: /KingfisherVG

@KingfisherVG

www.kingfishervisitorguides.com

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE

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SHOPPING

LOAKE SHOEMAKERS; VISITENGLAND/MARKETING CHESHIRE

“A RECENT ARRIVAL TO THE GROSVENOR CENTRE IS THE PRESTIGIOUS LOAKE SHOEMAKERS – A FAMILY-RUN FIRM WHICH HAS BEEN PRODUCING TOP-CLASS MEN’S SHOES SINCE THE 1880s”

times it was it home to a hermit and an important route to the monastery that pre-dates the Cathedral. Even its shops, including a tailors, a luxurious lingerie boutique and popular bridal shop, give off an air of exclusivity. Rufus Court, just off Northgate Street is an award-winning restoration of listed buildings dubbed ‘Chester’s Hidden Oasis’. It is a courtyard community of quirky shops linked to the Rows and walls. The Roman legions that created Chester had their barracks in fields just behind Rufus Court. Containing a mix of bridal, fashion and athletic shops, it’s also a good place to grab a drink when shopping becomes too much – with its ample choices of tea and coffee shops. Brown’s is a large department store that has occupied a central position since 1791 and was once regarded as the Harrods of the north. It became something of a faded beauty and was acquired by Debenhams in 1976 – the only store in the group not to be re-branded with the company’s name. A multi-million pound modernisation in 2012 has transformed its appearance and it hosts many prestigious designer names in perfume and clothing. The city’s main shopping mall is the Grosvenor Shopping Centre, which integrates with the Rows and Eastgate Street to provide a refuge from bad weather. The centre underwent a £5m development in 2015, completed with an impressive glass fronted atrium. TK Maxx and Sports Direct join the already popular selection of stores including Ann Summers, Dorothy Perkins and Topshop, to name but a few. A recent arrival is the prestigious Loake Shoemakers, a family-run firm which has been producing top-class men’s shoes since the 1880s. Chester is not really lacking in shops – it has something for everyone, whether that be high street names like H&M or New Look, or designer labels including Tessuti, LK Bennett or Reiss. There are also small boutiques and independents like City Gate Menswear in Bridge Street, which dresses

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE

well-heeled men and counts a number of footballers amongst its clientele. Brand new to Chester in late 2017 and only the second branch in the UK is Søstrene Grene, a unique Danish homeware shop dubbed ‘The Small IKEA’. So highly-anticipated that there were more than 200 customers queuing outside the door on opening day, it’s already proving a huge asset to the Grosvenor Shopping Centre with its unique bespoke interiors. And as well as shopping, you also get to unwind! Each store is designed to give customers a break from their busy everyday lives as they search the shelves for new and exciting finds through relaxed, subdued lighting. Chester is a little haven for jewellery lovers, with stunning designer pieces on show at Boodles and eye-catching windows of new and antique rings and brooches in the range of jewellers in the Grosvenor Shopping Centre. p40

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Cheshire West & Chester Council

Buy fresh, buy local – check out Cheshire’s markets Chester Indoor Market, in the heart of the city centre, tucked away behind the historic Town Hall; offering an Italian Pizzeria, delicious street food and artisan with an array of local fresh food including the only fishmonger in the city centre. Browse traditional and quirky stalls and discover a myriad of hidden treasures. Open Mon-Sat 8am-5pm Ellesmere Port Market, the largest in Cheshire, attracts both local and regional customers. A shopper’s haven located in the town centre, with central cafes providing a popular food hub for all palettes. Parking is available and only three minutes away from Cheshire Oaks – a must visit. Open Mon-Sun except Wed 8am-5pm Northwich Market, situated near the award-winning Lion Saltworks visitor attraction, offers both an indoor and outdoor market with traditional and unususal stalls. Open Tue-Fri and Sat 9am-4pm Winsford Market, popular with locals and visitors from afar, hosts a variety of stalls including a fantastic greengrocers. Open Mon-Thu and Sat 9am-4pm

For more information visit: cheshirewestandchester.gov.uk.


BARBOUR PARTNER STORE 7-11 ST WERBURGH STREET CHESTER CH1 2DY Tel: 01244 342142 www.mycountrycitystyle.co.uk


fabulous shoes where ever you’re going come and see us at 73 high street tarporley cheshire cw6 0ab 10-5 mon-sat 01829 733800

www.hoitytoityshoes.co.uk

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WELCOME TO CHESHIRE


SHOPPING

military amphitheatre in Britain and could seat between 8,000 and 10,000 people. The Romans abandoned the fortress by 410AD when they retreated from Britannia. One of their legacies was a thriving port at Chester, which survived until the mid 1800s when a combination of silting of the River Dee and better facilities for bigger ships at Liverpool killed the trade. A big pull for tourists, and just 15 minutes drive from the city, is the UK’s largest designer outlet village, Cheshire Oaks, which offers significant discounts on famous brands like Armani, Ralph Lauren, Reiss, Jaeger, Burberry, Pringle, Ted Baker, LK Bennett, Kurt Geiger, Bose, Tag Heuer and North Face. It is a one-level shopping centre with vast car parking, easy access from the M53, super facilities for the disabled, and facilities like children’s play areas, baby changing and customer information. There are restaurants and coffee shops as well as strategicallyplaced doughnut and ice cream vendors. Alongside Cheshire Oaks is The Coliseum, a complementary development which includes the addition of the largest Marks and Spencer store outside of London, other shops, a multi-screen cinema, tenpin bowling, and a variety of restaurants including Italian, Chinese, and American-themed. Shopping at Cheshire Oaks lacks the history and atmosphere of Chester but creates a hassle-free p43

CHESHIRE OAKS; SHUTTERSTOCK.COM

“DISCOVER FAMOUS BRANDS LIKE ARMANI, RALPH LAUREN, REISS, JAEGER, BURBERRY, PRINGLE, TED BAKER, LK BENNETT, KURT GEIGER, BOSE, TAG HEUER AND NORTH FACE”

Visitors can spend a happy time visiting antique shops, art galleries and rummaging in the knickknack shops. There are plenty of places to take a coffee break or lunch, going al fresco at pavement tables in the finer weather, and you can combine shopping with a little history tour, hopping on and off the nearly 2,000 year old defensive walls at convenient spots. You can easily walk from the main shopping areas through the Roman Gardens or Grosvenor Park down to The Groves on the River Dee – a riverside promenade where in the summer there is often music drifting from the bandstand and artists offering their paintings for sale. The city’s Roman roots are everywhere stretching back in time to about 70AD when the legions founded Chester as Deva Victrix. A civilian settlement grew around the soldiers as traders and their families profited from trade with the fortress, which was 20% larger than other fortresses in Britannia, which has led to the suggestion that the fortress may have been intended to become the capital of the province rather than London (Londinium). Only half of the amphitheatre built in first century can be seen – the other half lies protected and buried. But an artistic 3D device has been employed against a large wall to create the impression of it as a whole. It was the largest

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J|C

Julies Boutique Est 1965

Stocking clothes for the discerning woman Adventures des Toiles, Barbara Lebek, Basler, Eugen Klein, Glenmuir Knitwear, Laura Orchant Scarves, Pause Café, Relaxed by Toni, Saloos, Sommermann, Toni

Official stockists of award winning natural luxury skincare www.livingpurenatural.com

* INTERNATIONAL WINE CHALLENGE AWARDS 2017

All the wines and services you’d expect from the UK’s Large Independent Merchant of the Year*

www.julies-boutique.co.uk juliesbou

www.livingpurenatural.com

E sales.juliesboutique@gmail.com

T 01270 624555

150 CHRISTLETON ROAD, CHESTER CH3 5TD www.tanners-wines.co.uk 01244 343244

Julie’s Boutique|24 Pepper Street|Nantwich|Cheshire|CW5 5AB

Welcome to Cheshire 2018advert.indd 1

06/03/2018 11

JEWELLERY BY DESIGN E X C L U S I V E LY F O R Y O U EST 1978

Whether it be a simple clean and polish, a repair or a stone replacement we can help. With our very own on site workshop you can trust our in-house highly experienced team of expert goldsmiths. FOCUS ON DESIGN Free design consultation to formulate ideas. Sketches and computer aided design to help you visualise finished pieces. REMODEL OR RESTORATION Incorporate pieces of great sentiment & personal significance into a new item. Restore well loved pieces. We also offer a full range of fine jewellery.

8 St Michaels Row • The Grosvenor Shopping Centre • Chester • CH1 1EF

www.jewellerybydesign.com

kingfishervisitorguides.com

E: chester@jewellerybydesign.com

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T: 01244 350183

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE


M6 PRESTON

BLACKBURN M55 M66

SOUTHPORT M58 LIVERPOOL M53

M62

M61 MANCHESTER M62

LIVERPOOL AIRPORT

CHESHIRE OAKS

M56

DESIGNER OUTLET

MANCHESTER AIRPORT MACCLESFIELD

CHESTER A41

STOCKPORT

CREWE


SHOPPING

“WILMSLOW IS THE TOWN THAT GIVES CHESHIRE ITS “FOOTBALLERS WIVES” REPUTATION AND THERE IS A GOOD CHANCE YOU WILL SPOT A FAMOUS FACE WHILE SHOPPING OR LUNCHING”

ING IMAGE; PCRUCIATTI/SHUTTERSTOCK.COM

environment for people arriving by car. Chester city retailers initially regarded the outlet village as a threat but are now increasingly working to encourage visitors to see the two shopping areas as complementary to each other. Since local government re-organisation in 2009 Cheshire has been two boroughs, Cheshire West and Cheshire with strong links to Merseyside and North Wales, and Cheshire East looking towards Manchester in the north and the Potteries in the south. Both sides of the split have some lovely shopping towns and villages offering different experiences. Wilmslow is the town that gives Cheshire its “footballers wives” reputation and there is a good chance you will spot a famous face while shopping or lunching. The local car dealerships are Ferrari and Porsche and it used to be said there were more Rolls Royces per head in the town than anywhere in the UK outside of Mayfair. There is a good range of shops and not all the price tags, or fashions, are aimed at the WAGs. In the evening the town has live music ranging from jazz to opera. And if you want to take a break from shopping, the range of p45

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A jewellery shop with the luxury of an in-house workshop... Our goldsmiths and stone setters have over 60 years’ experience. Allow us to help and advise you with your gift or work with our designers to turn your ideas into your own unique piece of jewellery.

Specialists in jewellery re-modelling All repairs carried out on site Same day repairs possible

Open Tuesday to Saturday 15 St Werburgh Street (opposite Chester Cathedral) CH1 2DY 01244 313952 | shop@oharesjewellers.co.uk

Same day jewellery cleaning & polishing

www.oharesjewellers.co.uk

Fashion needs to be wearable, contemporary and exciting and each season Broadbents ensure that it refreshes its styling and brand selection, providing a unique collection of some of the most attractive brands to be seen on the independent high street. This, together with the friendliest of atmospheres has made Broadbents a success story for so many years. Stockists of‌ Masai | Sahara | Frank Lyman | Gerry Weber Naya | Piccadilly | Olsen | Adini | Robell Paz Torras | Capri | Joules | Peruzzi...and more

www.broadbents-uk.com

The Forge | Stockton Heath | WA4 6HW 01925 263 727

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE

King Street | Knutsford | WA16 6DX 01565 632 568

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ADOBESTOCK; LAUREL JOHNSON/RECLAIMED WORLD

SHOPPING

international food available for lunch is mouthwatering, from Nepalese to Japanese and Lebanese. Sometimes described as the Harrods of the north, Hoopers in Wilmslow is an independent, classy department store, with a nearby men’s shop also attracting clientele with deep pockets. And if you have a few thousand pounds burning a hole in your wallet and fancy a Rolex or Breitling Bentley Motors watch, then Mark Worthington jewellers will bring a smile to your face. Knutsford was a favourite spot for David and Victoria Beckham when he played for Manchester United. It is another well-heeled Cheshire town with a number of independent shops and is also the town on which Elizabeth Gaskell’s Cranford is based – made popular by the award-winning TV series. Tarporley is a strong candidate for one of the best villages in the UK and is a great place to lunch and use as a base to visit one of several interesting attractions in the area, including Beeston Castle ruins, a shire horse centre, candle-making factory and ice cream farm. Also in Tarporley, Reclaimed World is a reclamation yard with a difference with a wide range of household items, antiques and vintage collectables

kingfishervisitorguides.com

“SOMETIMES DESCRIBED AS THE HARRODS OF THE NORTH, HOOPERS IS AN INDEPENDENT, CLASSY DEPARTMENT STORE, WITH A NEARBY MEN’S SHOP ALSO ATTRACTING CLIENTELE WITH DEEP POCKETS”

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jostling for your attention on the three-acre site. Nantwich is a smart, rural town with landscaped pedestrianised areas, a range of specialist shops, a local market and some excellent eating places set in a medieval street pattern. Each year there are several events to add interest including a jazz festival and a large cheese show. Sandbach has been a market town since 1579 when Elizabeth I granted a Royal Charter. Of historical importance are two Saxon crosses in the market square dating before the 9th century. The market is held on Thursdays on Scotch Common and around the town hall. Apart from the famous vanishing cat in Alice in Wonderland, Cheshire is perhaps best known for its cheese. There are plenty of specialist cheese shops in Cheshire and a burgeoning number of excellent farm shops. Visitors who have only ever tasted Cheshire cheese from the supermarket should take the opportunity to find out what it really should be like. A must-visit is The Chester Cheese Shop which boasts over 200 different cow, goat and ewe cheeses, available pasteurised, unpasteurised, organic and vegetarian. l

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REASONS TO LOVE THIS REGION!

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10 REASONS

[01] STAR STRUCK

The Lovell telescope’s huge white saucer-shaped dish dominates the Cheshire Plain for miles around. Once the largest steerable radio telescope in the world, Jodrell Bank Observatory plays an important role in research and was heavily involved with the tracking of space probes at the start of the Space Age.

[02] ROMAN WALLS The most complete in the UK. A £3m upgrade includes story-telling signage and the restoration of the King Charles Tower from where the monarch is said to have watched his forces defeated at the battle of Rowton Heath in 1645. Walking in the footsteps of Roman soldiers, visitors get a wonderful view of Chester’s Cathedral, Castle, River Dee and Roman Gardens.

ADOBESTOCK; CHESHIRE MARKETING; CHESTER RACECOURSE; ING IMAGE; JOSH WILBURNE/UNSPLASH; VISITENGLAND

[03] THE ROWS The only example in the world of a medieval second level of shops above those on ground level forming the original covered shopping mall. They date back to the 13th century, although some are much later replacements. [04] LOCATION, LOCATION Easy access and all the benefits of big neighbours Manchester and Liverpool which gives Cheshire residents top level entertainment, Premier League football, a choice of airports, a rail link to London of less than two hours, and beautiful North Wales hills on the doorstep. [05] MEET YOU UNDER THE CLOCK – AND WHAT A CLOCK! Commissioned in honour of Queen Victoria’s 80th birthday in 1897, the ornate Eastgate

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Clock stands majestically in the heart of Chester. It is the second most photographed clock in the UK (after Big Ben). [06] SALT It is, literally, what Cheshire is built on. Huge deposits of salt lie beneath the county and historically brought great wealth and chemical industry jobs. The rock salt mined at Winsford keeps Britain’s roads moving in the worst winters. And uncontrolled brine pumping accidentally-formed beautiful flashes (lakes) through land subsidence now used for leisure pursuits. [07] BLACK AND WHITE Cheshire’s “magpie” houses and Friesian cows. The county has one of the country’s biggest populations of dairy cows to support its milk, cheese and butter rural industry.

“THERE’S A CHESTER PUB CRAWL TO ENABLE BEER LOVERS TO RE-ENACT THE BOOZY SESSION ENJOYED BY THE TWO CHESHIRE JOURNALISTS WHO CONCEIVED THE IDEA FOR THE CAMPAIGN FOR REAL ALE”

depicted on a stained glass window of the Nativity scene in Daresbury Parish Church. The Lewis Carroll Memorial Window designed by Geoffrey Webb and dedicated in 1935, is both striking and unusual, attracting visitors from around the world. Lewis Carroll (Charles Lutwidge Dodgson) was born in Daresbury in 1832 and baptised in the parish church where his father was curate. [10] REAL ALE There’s a Chester pub crawl to enable beer lovers to re-enact the boozy session enjoyed by the two Cheshire journalists and two friends the night before they flew to Dublin where they conceived the idea for the Campaign for Real Ale. l

[08] CHESHIRE CHEESE Imitated throughout the world but try the real farmhouse stuff with a mildly salty taste from the vast underground deposits of salt which permeate the county’s pastures. Semi-firm with a silky crumbly texture, it was once the only cheese to be served on Royal Navy ships. [09] CURIOUSER AND CURIOUSER Characters from Alice in Wonderland are

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EATING OUT

A TASTE OF CHESHIRE – AND THE WORLD! Top-end fine dining, adventurous independents and a great range of ethnic cuisine means you’ll never go hungry here


ADOBESTOCK; ING IMAGE

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since 1990, adding four AA rosettes and showing remarkable staying power to continue to top the list of favourite places to eat in Chester. It has a menu to die for and a wine list to convince you that you have arrived in heaven. And new for 2018 is the £350,000 refurbishment of its all-day dining restaurant La Brasserie, creating the city centre’s most exclusive champagne bar. La Brasserie sits at the heart of the city-centre and acts as an unrivalled hotspot for people-watching – a perfect retreat in the hustle and bustle of the city. The latest refurbishment includes sumptuous, modernised interiors as well as a brand new and bespoke brass and quartz champagne and cocktail bar that sits at the heart of La Brasserie, stocking a unique selection of champagne, spirits and cocktails. But for something a little more quirky, grab a bite to eat at Chester’s very own cheese toastie cafe! Opened in May 2017, this unique restaurant run by a self confessed cheese lover puts its own unique spin on the humble cheese melt, which come in a variety of different flavours – and there’s even craft beer on the menu. p51

hatever your culinary penchants may be, Cheshire is groaning under the weight of eateries that have something to offer all foodies. An influx of new eating and drinking spots opened their doors in Chester over the past year, and one of these was cocktail bar and upmarket restaurant The Alchemist on St John Street. The luxury venue opened last July in place of the former Gin Rickey’s and Luke’s Eating House following a £1.1m refurbishment and its molecular mixology and devilishly delicious menu has already proved a huge hit with revellers. If it’s Greek food you favour, though, the Olive Tree Brasserie puts a modern twist on old-fashioned classics. Nestled away on Chester’s historic rows, it features a rustic interior and a bona fide olive tree. Now for some elegant luxury. The five-star Grosvenor Hotel’s famous Arkle restaurant was renamed in 2008 as the Simon Radley Restaurant to recognise the culinary wizardry of their executive chef. Oozing with elegance and sophistication, the Grosvenor’s restaurant has retained its Michelin star

“OOZING WITH ELEGANCE AND SOPHISTICATION, THE GROSVENOR’S RESTAURANT HAS RETAINED ITS MICHELIN STAR SINCE 1990, ADDING FOUR AA ROSETTES AND SHOWING REMARKABLE STAYING POWER”

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Steeped in history, The Plough Inn offers you a traditional English country pub experience, boasting a wide selection of traditional real cask ales and fine wines. With its richly-furnished, comfortable bars and cosy nooks, it is the perfect place to enjoy a relaxing meal or drink with friends and family.

Our menu changes on a seasonal basis to ensure that you are getting the very best locally-sourced ingredients, all home cooked to order by our chef. On a Sunday we serve a traditional Sunday Lunch between 12 and 7pm. Choose from a range of roast topside of beef, gammon and chicken with stuffing.

THE PLOUGH INN | PLOUGH LANE | CHRISTLETON | CHESTER | CH3 7PT

T. 01244 336 096

Züger’s

@PloughInnChr

We offer: Breakfast / Toasties / Hot Dishes Snacks / Tea / Coffee / Fruit Juice / Sandwiches / Cakes / Ice Cream / Outside Catering

All the food is prepared on the premises. Wherever possible, farm produce from local suppliers is used with daily deliveries to ensure maximum freshness. The menus at all branches change seasonally but always include such Swiss staples as Alpine Rosti, Wiener Schnitzel and Apple Strudel. The Bromborough shop opens during the day Monday to Saturday and can be booked in the evening for private party groups. The Chester shop (which has recently won Chester’s Best Café Gold Award for the third year running) is open during the day, 7 days a week.

“Zugers Is by far the BEST TEA ROOM ever! Visit here frequently. Exceptional food, drink, service, atmosphere! You cannot fault it. The staff are so friendly and professional, they always strive to please and they do! The food is of excellent quality and fresh, amazing combinations and addictive cakes, glorious cakes!!! Would highly recommend Zugers!”

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE

The Plough Inn

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“The food is absolutely amazing, highly recommended to visit!” Bromborough Shop 150 Allport Road, Bromborough, Wirral, CH62 6BB Tel: 0151 334 1904 Chester Shop St. John Street, Chester, CH1 1DA Tel: 01244 348 041

www.zugerstearooms.co.uk

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CHESTER RACECOURSE; ING IMAGE; JEZ TIMMS/UNSPLASH

EATING OUT

“IT FOCUSES ON TRADITIONAL INDIAN STREET FOOD, THINK LESS TRADITIONAL CURRY AND RICE AND MORE SAVOURY SNACKS EATEN WITH INDIAN FLATBREADS”

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Also new to Chester in 2017 is the hotly anticipated vegetarian Indian street food restaurant Chai St. Situated on Brook Street, it’s the brainchild of partners Bob Gohill and Sandeep Jarjapu, who run the nearby Chester Spice Market. It focuses on traditional Indian street food, think less traditional curry and rice and more savoury snacks eaten with Indian flatbreads or stuffed pancakes called dosas. Their speciality dish is the vegetable thali platter, featuring two samasos, four vegetable dishes and lentils with yoghurt and puri/chapati breads, achar pickle and steamed rice. But it’s a large one, so you might have to share! Building a reputation for classic British food is The Architect, named in honour of the former resident Thomas Harrison, a prolific Georgian architect who designed the Grosvenor Bridge and much of Chester Castle, among many other classical structures. It is wonderfully situated next to the city’s racecourse and has enviable views to enjoy in the summer. Heading out of the city and idyllically positioned on the edge of the stunning Delamere Forest, the award-winning Fishpool Inn is a cosy, characterful inn dating back to the 18th century that is well worth a visit. And speaking of the 18th century, the Fox and Hounds at Sproston Green, near Middlewich, also dates back to this time period. At this classic Cheshire country pub, expect freshly-prepared quality fare using

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delicious locally-sourced products and fine ales. Another Cheshire gem is the Ring O’Bells in Daresbury. Originally Daresbury’s courthouse, the early 19th century building still has a session room where court proceedings once took place, and at the front of the pub there is a listed old stone horse stop and trough! They serve a delicious, traditional pub menu and have been accredited for their quality real ales by CAMRA. Like wine and tapas? Try Las Ramblas in Warrington for classic and contemporary tapas, wine and cocktails and even some live music. Or for something contemporary, Warrington’s The Grill on the Square is a must-visit. Enjoy your food at a ‘chef ’s table’ in a private dining area, which gives you an open plan view of the kitchen. Elegant curtains divide the dining room from the large bar area with high tables and a stunning grand piano. Now, imagine a restaurant that served nothing but desserts. Sounds like a dream, doesn’t it? Well thanks to a brand new restaurant on Cheshire Oaks in Ellesmere Port, this is a dream come true! For the first six weeks after it opened, access to Haute Dolci was so exclusive you needed to acquire an actual key to enter, but luckily it’s now open to all members of the public who have a sweet tooth. Here you’ll find American and Belgian waffles, crepes, puddings, cakes, cookie dough, gelato and even shots of melted chocolate from the taps that run with white and milk chocolate. p53

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE


Chester’s hidden secret… Off the ‘Beaton’ track, hidden in a tranquil setting next to Chester Cathedral, is Beatons Tearooms and Bookshop. We offer bright, elegant décor, a range of light lunches cooked to order together with delicious homemade cakes and scones. Why not try one of our 30 loose leaf teas on our secluded outside balcony overlooking the cathedral? Come and experience Beatons’ gracious hospitality!

BELL TOWER, BELL TOWER WALK, CHESTER CH1 2DY Open 7 days, Tel 01244 950 761

@BeatonsCheshire

@Beatons Tearooms

www.beatonstearooms.co.uk

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE

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EATING OUT

ADOBESTOCK; MARIANA MEDVEDEVA/UNSPLASH

“THE FOOD IS COMPLEMENTED BY AN EXTENSIVE RANGE OF LOOSE LEAF AND BAGGED TEA SERVED IN BURLEIGH CHINA TEACUPS. THIS CAN BE UPGRADED TO A ‘NAMPTWICHE TEA’ WHICH COMES WITH CHAMPAGNE IF YOU FANCY A TIPPLE”

home-made cakes and sandwiches on offer at Ginger and Pickles in Nantwich which was granted the Tea Guild’s ‘Award of Excellence’ in 2013. The food is complemented by an extensive range of loose leaf and bagged tea served in Burleigh china teacups. This can be upgraded to a ‘Namptwiche Tea’ which comes with champagne if you fancy a tipple. Ginger and Pickles is also known for its delicious speciality menu, which includes the Beforenoon tea, Cheshire breakfast and mouthwatering range of Staffordshire oatcakes. Meanwhile, back in Chester, if you can’t quite decide which cuisine you’re in the mood for, Chester’s world buffet eatery Panda Mami may be for you. Watch your food being prepared on the live cooking stations in front of you and you can choose from 120 authentic dishes from around the world. And if you can manage to get in (since they’re often fully booked) you should try The Chef’s Table, nestled away in Music Hall Passage in the heart of Chester city centre. It’s often rated as one of Chester’s top three venues on Trip Advisor and has recently undergone a revamp, offering a ‘broader choice’ with a big focus on dietary requirements including several vegan dishes plus gluten and dairy-free options. Another one to try in Chester is Picanha by Fazenda. It fuses the traditional Brazilian gaúcho-style grilling and Rodizio dining that is now a favourite in the UK. You can go for the all-you-can-eat grilled meats served at the table for a fixed price or there is a smaller, less expensive menu if you fancy a more informal dining experience. Described as a ‘hidden gem’, The Galley in Ellesmere Port is also must visit. p55

If you’re looking to try something a little different, The Salt Bar in Macclesfield could be just the thing. Scandinavian cuisine is the name of the game here and you can expect such culinary delights as Swedish meatballs, pyttipanna and hjort gryta (no, us neither!). Afternoon tea seems to have made a bit of a comeback in recent years and there are so many great places in Cheshire to find it. Treat yourself to an afternoon where you’re guaranteed to feel like royalty at Peckforton Castle where you can enjoy stunning views of the Cheshire countryside as you tuck into French pastries, fancies and sandwiches and tea. But, of course, if you prefer you can swap your tea for a glass of Joseph Perrier champagne or a Bombay Gin and tonic! Or you could try the vast assortment of

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Our restaurant is intimate and fun – fabulous wallpaper and living moss adorn the walls around the striking looking glasses, while luxurious fabrics blend perfectly with one of the most beautiful settings in Chester – looking out to The Secret Garden at Oddfellows.

Open daily for a scrumptious a la carte lunch or dinner experience, with a menu inspired by seasonal produce to include Welsh lamb, stone bass, whipped goats’ cheese with watermelon and delicious steaks from the grill section.

Contact

20 Lower Bridge Street, Chester CH1 1RS reception@oddfellowschester.com 01244 345 454

WWW.ODDFELLOWSCHESTER.COM

DINING AT MAC D ONALD NEW BLOS S OMS HOT EL

indulge yourself Macdonald New Blossoms Hotel is a stylish hotel in the heart of the historic City of Chester, situated on the famous City Walls and near the Eastgate Clock Tower, said to be the second most photographed clock in England.

£49 FOR TWO Enjoy two courses and a glass of wine each. Offer must be redeemed by 30th June. Offer is subject to availability. Voucher not valid in conjunction with any other offer. Quote ‘WelcomeCheshire’ to redeem.

Booking is easy. Call 01244 323 186 or visit www.MacdonaldHotels.co.uk/Steakhouse

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE

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ADOBESTOCK; CHESTER RACECOURSE

EATING OUT

Located next to The Waterways Museum, diners can expect stunning views as they enjoy fresh, home-cooked food and friendly service. With the aim of reinventing the humble spud, Chester is the launch pad for the newly-opened Jack Burrito chain, which offers jacket potatoes with a range of ‘delicious’ fillings inspired by South American flavours. They’re also available in burritos – what more could you wish for? Did you know Chester was home to Pancake Heaven? Well, if you like pancakes you’re in for a treat because Hanky Panky Pancakes on Commonhall Street is known as just that. There’s every type of pancake you could want here – from a savoury chorizo and sun-dried tomato to a stack of sticky toffee. You can even get a Full English pancake. And a new rival has recently opened its doors on nearby Bridge Street in the form of Crêpeaffair which French-style crêpes and waffles.Bridge Street could well be mistaken for Chester’s French Quarter with two other Parisian-style bistros on the street. Côte Brasserie, newly opened in 2017, takes its inspiration from the brasseries of Paris, with relaxed, all-day dining and authentic French classics made from great quality, fresh ingredients. And just across the road you can get more French fare at Cafe Rouge which is located next door to Patisserie Valerie where you can enjoy a continental breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea or just one of their sumptuous hand-make cakes and pastries. l

THE B R E W E RY

TAP

ALE HOUSE Fine food and a fantastic selection of real ale await visitors to The Brewery Tap which is set in a medieval Grade II listed hall in the heart of Chester. The award-winning pub belongs to the Spitting Feathers brewery. A lifelong love of good beer and an interest in quality ale production were the inspiration behind the Spitting Feathers brewery. Fresh, local produce, including pork reared on the brewery farm and honey from the bee hives, is used in the kitchen to create traditional and tasty pub meals for a good value menu which changes daily. Gamul House, 52-54 Lower Bridge Street, Chester CH1 1RU tel: 01244 340 999 email: drink@the-tap.co.uk

www.the-tap.co.uk

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10

THINGS YOU MUST DO!

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE

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10 THINGS

[01] GO TO THE RACES

Chester Races is a colourful social event embraced by the whole region and much more than just watching horses galloping around a track where it is believed Romans raced their chariots. A great opportunity to don the glad rags, enjoy the atmosphere, and lose a few pounds.

[02] ROW A BOAT Hire a rowing boat on the River Dee on a sunny day, and impress or embarrass friends and family with your Steve Redgrave imitation. Then recover eating a Cheshire ice cream listening to the sound of brass performed on Chester’s riverside bandstand. [03] DRIVE A RACING CAR If canals are too slow for your taste, why not try your hand behind the wheel of a racing car speeding around Cheshire’s famous Oulton Park track? There are various options available including the chance to test your skills behind the wheel of a single seat racing car.

©CHESTER ZOO; ADOBESTOCK; CHESHIRE MARKETING/TONY WEST; VISITENGLAND

[04] VISIT THE ZOO The zoo has a worldwide reputation, with 11 miles of footpaths, wonderful gardens and thousands of creatures large and small. [05] RIDE A HORSE Saddle up, Cheshire has miles and miles of bridleways to welcome experienced and novice horse riders. Equestrian centres, riding schools, bed and breakfast accommodation with stables make this a horse-friendly county. Experience the 22-mile Delamere Loop through the countryside or the Bishop Bennet Way, a 34-mile two-day ride from near Beeston Castle to Whitchurch.

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[06] GO UNDERGROUND Britain had plans to go underground in the event of a nuclear attack. Recreate the chill of those Cold War nightmares at the Hack Green Secret Nuclear Bunker near Nantwich. Not a secret anymore – it is a visitor attraction which traces the history of the bunker which grew from being an important WW2 radar control site to the nerve centre of regional government from Cheshire to Cumbria in the event of a nuclear war.

“RECOVER BY EATING A CHESHIRE ICE CREAM LISTENING TO THE SOUND OF BRASS PERFORMED ON CHESTER’S RIVERSIDE BANDSTAND”

Regarded as one of the Seven Wonders of the Mechanical Age, the lift raises and lowers canal boats 50ft between the Trent and Mersey Canal and the River Weaver at Northwich. [10] RHS FLOWER SHOW Cheshire has many wonderful gardens open to the public – but the hugely popular RHS flower show at Tatton Park – is a wonderful bonus for visitors. It is the north west’s biggest garden party. l

[07] WALK THE SANDSTONE TRAIL Pack your hiking boots and experience the rural splendour of Cheshire viewed from the Sandstone Trail – 34 miles of sandstone ridges, cliffs, crags and caves, open woodland and ancient forest through gentle, undulating Cheshire farmland. [08] PAGEANT OF POWER Experience the Pageant of Power – three days of racing cars, historic and modern, speedboats, aerial displays and helicopter rides, all in the settings of Cholmondeley Castle gardens. [09] ANDERTON BOAT LIFT Take a ride on the Edwin Clark boat trip to experience the awesome Victorian masterpiece of engineering, the Anderton Boat Lift.

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ARTS & CULTURE

A REGION AT THE HEART OF ART! There’s a rich cultural history on offer in Cheshire

BECCY LANE/STORYHOUSE; MARK CARLINE PHOTOGRAPHY

T

he long-awaited 2017 grand opening of Storyhouse – Chester’s £37m theatre, cinema and library development – has more than made up for 10 years without a prominent culture hub in the city. The restored and revitalised 1930s Odeon building, which houses an 800-seat auditorium, has already won multiple awards and welcomed a plethora of household names since it opened. Alongside the building, which includes a 150-seat studio theatre, restaurant, two bars and independent cinema, Storyhouse also runs a series of festivals as well as the award-winning Grosvenor Park Open Air Theatre and Moonlight Flicks. It really is well worth a visit to Storyhouse – even Jeremy Vine said he felt ‘lucky’ to have visited, calling it a ‘real boost for Chester.’ Elsewhere, community theatre company Tip Top Productions stages regular quality plays and live entertainment in the Forum Theatre – part of the closed down Gateway Theatre. Tip Top continues to utilise a range of venues across the city for live performances, which have recently included Priscilla Queen of the Desert – The Musical and Roald Dahl’s The Witches. The traditional Midsummer Watch parade is one of the oldest and most colourful events in the country and is firmly established as one of Chester’s most iconic events where angels, devils, green men and mythical beasts rub shoulders with Romans, St Werburgh, elephants and camels in a parade full of colour and p62

“THE MIDSUMMER WATCH PARADE IS ONE OF THE OLDEST AND MOST COLOURFUL EVENTS IN THE COUNTRY AND IS FIRMLY ESTABLISHED AS ONE OF CHESTER’S MOST ICONIC EVENTS”

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Nantwich Museum Displays about Roman settlement, a Tudor disaster, the Civil War, clock, shoe and clothing production, as well as a dedicated Cheese Room, can all be discovered in this gem of a museum housed in a former Victorian library. A changing programme of historical and art-themed exhibitions means there is always something new to see.

FREE ADMISSION Contact Details Pillory Street, Nantwich, Cheshire CW5 5BQ T. 01270 627 104

Photos: Paul Topham

www.nantwichmuseum.org.uk

Original oil paintings, original charcoal drawings, and reproduction prints by Snowdonia & Chester artist Alison Bradley Welsh landscape · Animals & rural life · Equestrian & racing · Coastal scenes · Chester · Fine bespoke picture framing Alison Bradley Gallery 42 Watergate Street Chester CH1 2LA 01244 315000

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE

www.alisonbradley.gallery

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Alison Bradley Gallery Ffordd Caergybi Betws-y-coed LL24 0AB 01690 710080

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Baron Fine Art We have a very diverse range of 19th to 21st century fine art with the emphasis on quality. There are over 500 paintings to view online, with in-house crating and worldwide shipping available.

Minimum opening hours Mon-Sat: 9.15am-6.00pm Sun: 10.00am-6.00pm

Richard Firth, Lulworth on the Solent Oil on canvas 48 by 32 inches

Maurice Canning Wilks, Cashel Mountains Connemara Ireland Oil on canvas, 16 by 20 inches

Exhibiting at various fine art and antique fairs

Roy Hodrien, A Glass of Red Wine, Cheese, Hazelnuts and a Blue and White China Bowl with Plums. Oil on panel, 12 by 10 inches

Alfred de Breanski Sr, Llyn-y-Ddinas near Bedgellert North Wales Oil on canvas, 24 by 36 inches

Ground floor gallery and two basement galleries T. 01244 342520 E. info@baronfineart.co.uk

www.baronfineart.co.uk

68 Watergate Street, Chester CH1 2LA


music that dates back to the late 1400s. Its festive counterpart is the Winter Watch Parade, where you can expect to see an eccentric parade of skeletons, Christmas cooks, angels and devils celebrating the Winter solstice, to the sounds of Karamba Samba. This quintessentially ‘Chester’ event dates back to the 1400s, and brings local artists and community groups together to celebrate a time when the city leaders would hand over the keys to the city watch. And music lovers lamenting the demise of Chester Racecourse’s short-lived rock festival, Chester Rocks, will surely be pleased with the return of Chester Live for another year. The community based multi-venue live music event aims to promote all forms of live music to the local community, introducing people of all ages and ethnic backgrounds to local live acts and surrounding areas.

“THE 1930s ODEON BUILDING HAS ALREADY WON MULTIPLE AWARDS AND WELCOMED A PLETHORA OF HOUSEHOLD NAMES SINCE IT OPENED IN 2017”

Discover Chester Cathedral

Chester Cathedral is many things to many people: a vibrant community of worship, an archaeological treasure, a cultural hub, a centre of musical excellence and a unique blend of medieval and modern history. Experience Explore Enjoy Discover what Chester Cathedral is to you... All are welcome.

Gift Shop

Special Events

Step inside and discover an inspired collection of gifts for friends and family, or possibly something special just for you.

Taking place throughout the year from concerts and exhibitions, to special services and organ recitals. Visit the cathedral website for more details.

LEGO ® Cathedral at Height Embark on a spectacular adventure to the top of the central tower and see the cathedral like never before.

Visit Chester Cathedral in LEGO the most exciting mini-adventure in the cathedral's history. Perhaps, lay a brick or two yourself.

Refectory Café

Enjoy a delightful lunch or coffee and a cake in the medieval Refectory - one of Chester’s most unique dining locations.

Choral Evensong

The cathedral choir perform music from the fourteenth century to the present day. Mon, Tues, Thurs, Fri 5.30pm Sat 4.15pm Sun 3.30pm

chestercathedral.com WELCOME TO CHESHIRE

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ADOBESTOCK; MARK CARLINE/STORYHOUSE; PORT SUNLIGHT VILLAGE TRUST

ARTS & CULTURE

If you like your live acts, head over to Chester Live Rooms which has hosted some of the biggest names in music from a diverse range of genres. There is also a side room which provides an ideal space for smaller, more intimate, shows, as well as an upstairs area featuring a balcony overlooking the main room, a VIP bar and numerous seating areas. And just over the road is Carriage Shed – a unique semi-enclosed event space which regularly plays host to some incredible events ranging from beer festivals, vintage fashion shows, art exhibitions and silent cinema. Speaking of festivals, there are plenty of separate festivals of food with lots of great offers and initiatives in the city’s restaurants; and a very successful Chester Literature Festival every November, attracting top authors and poets for events and workshops, book signings and involving local schools. Annual diversity festival Chester Pride always features a huge parade of colour and entertainment and the free event grows in spectacle each year. The city is blessed with the wonderful Grosvenor Museum which tells the story of the city’s history from pre-Roman times and also houses an impressive collection of Roman tombstones, a nationally-important collection of silver and an art

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gallery which features the work of regional artists over hundreds of years. Linked to the museum is 20 Castle Street, a town house that features home life from the 17th century to the 1920s, including a Victorian kitchen, a Georgian drawing room, a nursery and a fully-fitted Edwardian bathroom. A 20-minute train ride from Chester will drop you almost at the front door of the Lady Lever Art Gallery in the enchanting garden village of Port Sunlight. Entrance is free and the gallery houses a stunning collection of paintings as well as exquisite furniture, Chinese collections, tapestries, sculpture, Wedgwood and classical antiquities. The paintings on display include pieces by Reynolds, Gainsborough, Stubbs, Turner, Millais, Rossetti, Holman Hunt and Waterhouse. Cheshire benefits from easy access to the variety of theatres, museums and galleries on offer in Manchester and Liverpool as well as The Lowry in Salford and nearby Clwyd Theatr Cymru in Mold. Art lovers will appreciate the independent, family run gallery Love Art in Nantwich, which offers original artwork and limited edition prints from some of the country’s leading artists – and caters for all tastes and budgets. p65

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“ANNUAL DIVERSITY FESTIVAL CHESTER PRIDE ALWAYS FEATURES A HUGE PARADE OF COLOUR AND ENTERTAINMENT”

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE


Set in the heart of the Cheshire Countryside, this delightfully quirky and intimate venue offers a wide range of musical entertainment, all year round, complete with indoor picnic and dining facilities, and licensed bar

NURTURING NEW TALENT

CLONTER OPERA OPERA THEATRE CLONTER THEATRE BOXOFFICE OFFICE 01260 01260 224 BOX 224 514 514www.clonter.org www.clonter.org SWETTENHAMHEATH, HEATH, CONGLETON, CONGLETON, CW12 SWETTENHAM CW122LR 2LR Registered Charity Number 1083903 Registered Charity Number 1083903

Cheshire Military Museum

Williamson Art Gallery & Museum Housing one of the best art collections in the North West of England in its beautifully proportioned galleries, paintings of all sorts, especially British watercolours and work by local artists, join highlights of the decorative arts collections like Liverpool Porcelain and Birkenhead’s own contribution to the Arts & Crafts Movement, the Della Robbia Pottery. T. 0151 666 3537 E. williamsonartgallery@wirral.gov.uk

Three Centuries of History

Opening times Wed to Sun: 10am – 5pm Closed Mon & Tues

Slatey Road, Birkenhead CH43 4UE www.williamsonartgallery.org

Birkenhead Priory & St Mary’s Tower The oldest standing building on Merseyside, Birkenhead Priory encapsulates so much of the town’s history within an enclosed site: the small place with a big history. E. birkenheadpriory@wirral.gov.uk Priory Street, Birkenhead CH41 5JH (car park, end of Church Street) www.thebirkenheadpriory.org Opening times Wed to Fri pm: Sat & Sun all day Closed Mon & Tues

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE

Open daily 10am - 5pm last entry 4pm (closed Wednesday November- Easter)

Call 0151 666 1249 or 666 3537 to check times, which vary with the season.

www.cheshiremilitarymuseum.co.uk The Castle|Chester|Cheshire|CH1 2DN 64

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ADOBESTOCK; MARK MCNULTY; SHUTTERSTOCK.COM

ARTS & CULTURE

Not far away, the historic Edwardian Lyceum Theatre in Crewe is operated by the borough council and successfully hosts a series of visiting theatres. In the days when it had its own repertory company, audiences in the 100-year old building saw performances from Glenda Jackson and Richard Beckinsale. Warrington Museum and Art Gallery is one of the oldest municipal museums in the country. Opened in 1857, much of the quintessential character of the building has been preserved and its original glass cabinets are crammed with treasures from all around the world. The museum hosts a series of events and temporary exhibitions – recently featuring work by Banksy, Tracy Emin and Sam Taylor-Wood – as well as permanent galleries ranging from Warrington’s own dinosaur and Egyptian displays to local industrial history and toys from the past. One of the jewels in Cheshire’s crown is The Brindley – an award-winning theatre and arts centre by the Bridgewater Canal in Runcorn and named after the canal’s engineer, James Brindley. Operated by Halton Council and opened in 2004, The Brindley has a 420-seat auditorium, plus 108-seat studio and

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hosts touring shows, amateur productions as well as a series of captivating exhibitions. Brindley events range from music tribute acts to plays and “audiences with” celebrities. Macclesfield Silk Museum and Paradise Mill are just a few minutes walk apart and provide an informative insight into the town’s history as the once-largest producer of finished silk in the world. Paradise Mill provides guided tours and houses 20 restored Jacquard looms which revolutionised silk making. The Silk Museum and Heritage centre in Roe Street has interactive displays, films, audio presentations and displays of luxurious silk costumes from various centuries. And well worth a visit is the most excavated monastic site in Europe – Norton Priory Museum & Gardens in Runcorn. Boasting the ruins of an Abbey, 12th-century undercroft as well as an 18th-century Walled Garden, this fantastic place is shrouded within an oasis of tranquil woodland and wildflower meadows. The new museum displays thousands of artefacts from Norton’s 900 year history – including the internationally significant 14th-century statue of St Christopher. l

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“OPENED IN 2004, THE 420-SEAT AUDITORIUM, PLUS 108-SEAT STUDIO, HOSTS TOURING SHOWS, AMATEUR PRODUCTIONS AS WELL AS A SERIES OF CAPTIVATING EXHIBITIONS”

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE


SPORT

OUR SPORTING LIFE! Whether you want to watch or take part, there’s always plenty on offer here

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE

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ADOBESTOCK; ALLAN MCKENZIE/SWPIX.COM/WARRINGTON WOLVES; SHUTTERSTOCK.COM

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orses play a key role in Cheshire’s sporting life – it is claimed there are more horse owners per capita in the county and adjacent Wirral than anywhere else in the UK. Riding schools, clubs, stables and miles of bridleways help satisfy the demand from people who want to view the county’s countryside from the saddle and reflect the interest in gymkhanas, polo and horse racing. Historic Chester Racecourse gives great pleasure to thousands of visitors and also hosts other sporting events, including top polo matches. Prince William played there in a charity match just days after his marriage in 2011. His father and grandfather were regular players at Cheshire Polo Club near Tarporley which is the oldest in England and provides an accessible great day out for families. The club boasts a number of successful teams and over 80 playing members, and plays host to over 50 matches every season, including the prestigious HPA National 8 Goal. There are facilities for riders and competitions for all ages. Visitors to Cheshire can take riding lessons, compete, or just hack along the countryside where there are an increasing number of pubs, B&Bs and stabling facilities. Cheshire is wonderfully positioned to visit top football clubs, Manchester United, Manchester City, Liverpool, Everton and Stoke, but it also has plenty of its own clubs, including Crewe, Chester, Northwich and Macclesfield. Both codes of rugby are played at the top level, with Warrington Wolves and Widnes Vikings in the 13-man code and Sale Sharks regarded as a Cheshire club even though they now play their rugby union at Salford City Stadium. Basketball is hugely popular with the crowds watching Cheshire Phoenix in the top-tier British Basketball League at their Northgate Arena base in Chester. The former Chester Jets were appropriately renamed Phoenix after rising from the ashes of a financial crisis in 2012. Oulton Park race circuit hosts many top class motor racing and motorcycle racing events, including rounds of the British Touring Car Championship, British Superbike Championship and the British F3/GT Championships. The track opened in 1950s on an estate used by General Patton as an army staging camp prior to the Normandy landings. One of its most famous corners, Knickerbrook,

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was said to have been given the name after explosive expert and raconteur, Blaster Bates, saw a startled couple running off after he’d been blowing up tree stumps there and he found a lady’s underwear in a ditch. Cheshire has many fine golf courses. Carden Park has two championship courses, one designed by Jack Nicklaus and his son Steve, and the testing Cheshire Course. Delamere Forest Golf Club is a demanding and picturesque course, one of the best heathland courses in England, although not as many trees as its name implies. Sandiway Golf Club is highly regarded, with

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tree-lined fairways and lots of doglegs. The course was designed by 1912 Open Champion Ted Ray. Wilmslow Lacrosse Club is one of Britain’s top clubs – British champions many times in the last 15 years – with several international players and providing superb facilities as part of the Phoenix Sports Club. Other strongly-supported sports include road race cycling, hockey, squash, and sailing on several beautiful Cheshire countryside lakes. Just 10 minutes drive from Chester city centre is the Deeside Ice Skating rink which offers coaching for would-be skaters and also is home to The Deeside Dragons ice hockey team. l

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE


TRAVEL

GETTING HERE AND GETTING AROUND! Getting to and around this region couldn’t be easier

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hester is located in Cheshire in the heart of the UK about 197m/317km from London. It is the most southerly part of England’s north west region. You can use Chester as a base for visiting Liverpool and Manchester, the Peak District, Shropshire, Staffordshire and Snowdonia.

VISITENGLAND/RICH J JONES/ANDERSEN BOATS

AIRPORTS The nearest airports to Cheshire are Manchester Airport and Liverpool John Lennon, which are both about 40 minutes by road from Chester. ROAD Main motorway links to Cheshire are through the M6, M56 and M53. Route planning information can be found at The AA, RAC and Google Maps. You can hire a car at airports and some of the larger towns in and around Cheshire (including Chester, Crewe, Macclesfield and Warrington). TRAIN Travelling to Cheshire by rail is an easy, relaxing, experience, with high speed trains leaving London every hour for Cheshire’s main line stations. Chester is now only two hours from London where you can connect to local Arriva Trains services to the North Wales coast. Crewe is the northern hub of the rail network with regular connecting services throughout p73

“CHESHIRE IS LOCATED IN THE HEART OF THE UK AND IS THE MOST SOUTHERLY PART OF ENGLAND’S NORTH WEST REGION”

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WELCOME TO CHESHIRE


Cheshire’s Largest Taxi Service

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Established over 50 years

Fully computerised booking and dispatch

FIND US AT 51/53 BRIDGE STREET, CHESTER, CH1 1NG

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TRAVEL

the region. There are inward services from London, Scotland, Derby, Birmingham and the West Midlands. BUS Cheshire is well served by local bus services throughout the county and if you are 60 or over, or “eligible disabled”, your National Bus Pass will give you free off-peak bus travel throughout the county.

GETTY IMAGES/POLKA DOT RF

COACH TRAVEL All National Express services in Chester now depart from the Bus Exchange, Stand 7 behind the Town Hall. Chester’s Official Visitor Information Centre at the Town Hall is the main ticket agency for National Express in Chester. BY TAXI All hackney carriage taxis (black cabs) in Chester are fully licensed, insured, and are wheelchair accessible. They are fitted with hearing loops and can accommodate at least five people. There are also private and business taxi hire companies, including Chester’s largest, KingKabs. l

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WELCOME TO CHESHIRE


FURTHER AFIELD

LET’S EXPLORE! If you have some time to spare, why not head slightly further afield and see what lies on Cheshire’s doorstep?

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location between Beeston and Peckforton Castle, the farm’s award-winning real dairy ice cream entices more than half a million visitors every year. But it’s not just about ice cream – the farm also houses ‘Crazy Daisy’s’ amazing indoor adventure play barn, a country kitchen cafe, gift shop, outdoor play areas for all ages, animal corner, quad bikes, mini golf and much more, so there’s definitely something for everyone. And while you’re in Tattenhall you can’t not visit the traditional Cheshire Candle Making workshops. It boasts ancient candle dipping techniques that remain the same as they did years ago to produce unique, hand-carved candles. You can learn how to make your own by taking lessons from experts, and even do your own pottery painting fridge magnets, key rings and badges. If you’re willing to travel even more further afield, nearby Liverpool has lots to offer. You could get acquainted with 700 wild animals, from baboons to tigers at Knowsley Safari Park, just eight miles out of Liverpool where the drive-through lion enclosure is a real highlight. Or make the most of the Fab Four’s hometown by visiting The Beatles Story at Liverpool’s Albert Dock. It’s the world’s largest permanent exhibition purely devoted to the The Beatles and you can get lost in the information and memorabilia of everything to do with The Fab Four. Exhibits include John Lennon’s famous round glasses, George Harrison’s first guitar, signed albums and a replica of the world famous Cavern Club. l

hester is well-connected, and there’s plenty to see just a stone’s throw from the city – and beyond. Chester is a great place to spend time, with lots to see, do and try. But one of the brilliant things about its location is that it’s a fantastic base from which to explore. The National Waterways Museum in Ellesmere Port is a wonderful waterside setting, featuring flotillas of historic boats and fascinating displays housed in fine Victorian buildings, so you’re guaranteed a great day out whatever the weather. Visitors can take a boat trip through industrial landscape, visit the museum blacksmith and explore traditional narrow boats and homes through the ages, complete with cottage gardens. And not far away is the UK’s largest designer outlet, Cheshire Oaks, which comprises more than 145 boutiques, restaurants and cafés. It offers a huge range of stores to suit every taste, and you’ll even be able to pick up a bargain or two. A short 30-minute drive away in Sandiway, Northwich, is Blakemere Village, a fun destination for families of all age groups. There are daily activities including a children’s play barn, a paint-a-pot and candle making studio, a falconry, pet shop, toy shop and even Segway experiences open seven days a week. A restaurant serving home-cooked food and snacks completes this fun packed day out, which even includes a free outside adventure play park for little ones. Over in Tattenhall, you’d be a fool not to stop at Cheshire Farm Ice Cream. Set in the picturesque

“IF YOU’RE WILLING TO TRAVEL EVEN MORE FURTHER AFIELD, NEARBY LIVERPOOL HAS LOTS TO OFFER. YOU COULD GET ACQUAINTED WITH 700 WILD ANIMALS, FROM BABOONS TO TIGERS AT KNOWSLEY SAFARI PARK”

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WELCOME TO CHESHIRE


NIGHTLIFE

WELCOME TO THE NIGHT! Whether it’s trendy clubs or old-fashioned pubs, you’ll have lots of fun here – with a bit of star-spotting thrown in

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Gordon Ramsay and once you’ve finished eating you can visit the downstairs cocktail bar The Boardroom which offers a host of unique drink concoctions. Both Alderley Edge and Chester have The Botanist to offer – an unusual concept unlike anything else you’ll have seen before. The inside setting is a greenhouse where you can enjoy botanical cocktails, craft beers, ales, champagne and wine. Sample the deli-inspired food while listening to live music, and it even has its own private dining room for private parties. One of the city’s long-standing in-crowd places, Chester’s ‘original cocktail bar’ Bar Lounge sits at the corner of Watergate Street and Nicholas Street where a heated outdoor area provides a great view of the alternating red, amber and green lights. Last year it underwent an impressive refurbishment which includes an extended bar that incorporates new dispense and cocktail bars. If you’re in Macclesfield and looking for a tipple, why not pop into RedWillow? With a constantly changing line-up of exclusive guest beers, this place also stocks more than 60 types of gins and spirits that’ll be sure to whet your whistle. And fast becoming one of Cheshire’s best live venues is The Acoustic Lounge in Poynton. By day they are a cafe, by p78

hen you’re not busy celebrity spotting in Alderley Edge, why not stop by Drum and Monkey and try their impressive selection of the finest cask and keg ales and an impressive wine list to boot? Meanwhile, over in Chester, start your night off at All Bar One – a ‘stylish city bar’ and one of only 50 in the UK. It’s the perfect place to meet friends, unwind from work or just de-brief after a stressful day. If it’s impressive cocktails you’re after, you need to try newly-opened The Alchemist. Situated next to the city’s famous Ampitheatre where the Roman Centurions once trained for battle – it’s not just delicious drinks you can get here but a fantastic menu, too – from retro fish finger sandwiches to prawn lollipops, you’re bound to be impressed. Just a few doors down and a massively popular attraction is The Church restaurant and bar in Newgate Street – a hugely impressive £1.5m conversion of the disused Grade 2-listed St Andrew’s United Reformed Church, within touching distance of the famous Roman walls. Over on City Road is The Yard, a family run modern Italian restaurant which combines both style and substance. The restaurant’s chef once worked for

“THIS BAR HAS AN UNUSUAL CONCEPT UNLIKE ANYTHING ELSE YOU’LL HAVE SEEN BEFORE. THE INSIDE SETTING IS A GREENHOUSE WHERE YOU CAN ENJOY BOTANICAL COCKTAILS, CRAFT BEERS, CHAMPAGNE AND WINE”

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WELCOME TO CHESHIRE


“CHESTER HAS A REAL CLAIM TO BE THE PLACE WHERE THE CAMPAIGN FOR REAL ALE HAS ITS ROOTS (ORIGINALLY THE CAMPAIGN FOR THE REVITALISATION OF ALE BUT THAT NAME DIDN’T LAST LONG)”

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE

night it’s a live music hub – of all different types. There’s a unique layout to this place where you can watch bands from a balcony whilst enjoying the range of cocktails and ales on offer. We’re going to let you in on a Chester secret here by telling you about the Prohibition bar on Watergate Street which is so exclusive there are no signs to indicate it even exists. It’s the brainchild of young barman Josh Parmour who took over the intimate cocktail bar and modelled its interior and ambience on the Prohibition era of the 1920s. It’s definitely worth a visit for the cocktails alone, as well as the sultry décor and background music. Another great bar that’s pretty under the radar is the neighbouring Liquor & Co. Hidden away on Watergate Row, this place even has a secret, intimate bar upstairs. There’s an extensive cocktail menu and drinks to suit all tastes. A little further down the street is Kuckoo, known for their mind-blowing cocktail concoctions such as the Ten Dollar Shake which comes garnished with a Krispy Kreme doughnut, and the Wham Bar Sling, topped with – you guessed it – a Wham bar. Chester has a real claim to be the place where the Campaign for Real Ale has its roots (originally the Campaign for the Revitalisation of Ale but that name didn’t last long). Bars with a real ale following include Old Harkers

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Arms on the canalside off City Road, The Brewery Tap in Lower Bridge Street which serves its own local brew Spitting Feathers as well as a host of guest beers, and the eccentric corner pub Albion Inn which bans juke boxes, music, stag parties, hen parties, fancy cocktails, chips and children but dogs are welcome in the bar only. As befits its name, there is a patriotic Rule Britannia and First World War theme to the pub. There are lots of great bars in the city, many serving food and providing live music. Upmarket venues include the stylish Oddfellows in Lower Bridge Street which has undergone a major and quirky revamp, with an Alice in Wonderland feel to a dining room with chairs and tables on the ceiling, old fashioned typewriters on walls, a replica of a Valkyrie bomber aircraft wing as a reception desk, and 6ft woodland animals as murals in the bar. For serious clubbers there is the popular Cruise nightclub on St John Street, with six themed areas catering for all tastes of music and ages plus regular live acts. High standards are maintained with a dress code and restriction on hen and stag party fancy dressing. Chester’s other nightclub Rosies, in Northgate Street has three dance floors, two chill rooms, six bars, three DJ booths and a very lively atmosphere.

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ADOBESTOCK; ING IMAGE; JAKUB DZIUBAK/JEREMY ATTWOOD/JOHN CAFAZZA/MICHAEL DISCENZA/UNSPLASH

NIGHTLIFE

Both clubs offer cheap drink deals to encourage young clubbers in, including the thousands of students at the city’s university. Wednesdays are student nights and can make the city fairly lively at the witching hour. Popular with students, one of the liveliest and most popular venues for live music is Telfords Warehouse in Tower Wharf. The family-run venue bar/restaurant has evolved into a well known music and arts venue set in a building designed by Thomas Telford evoking memories of Chester as a once thriving port. They serve delicious food too! No laughing matter for the people behind Chester’s failed comedy club venture, The Laugh Inn, but it has been replaced by The Live Rooms, a much needed live music venue in Station Road, close to the city’s railway station, with occasional comedy nights retained. One upcoming act is American actor and comedian Rob Schneider. Moving on to Altrincham and subterranean bar Mort Subite (Place de Bierre) in Altrincham is so unique it’s almost impossible to define it. You’ll feel like you’re entering bohemian Paris it’s that special. Featuring a puppet theatre, bird cages on the walls and an incredible selection of beers – you can’t go to Altrincham and not pop in to see what the fuss is about. Back in Chester, themed three hour River Dee

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cruises on board the Lady Diana and Mark Twain showboats sail every Saturday evening through the summer and autumn, alternating between Mamma Mia and 60s, 70s and, 80s disco music – and a barbecue, drinks and dancing on board. Down the road in Ellesmere Port’s Coliseum – next to the designer outlet village Cheshire Oaks – is a multiplex cinema, tenpin bowling, and restaurants offering the tastes of South America, Italy, China and New Orleans. Other towns have nightlife aimed mostly at local residents, like Knutsford’s Tap & Bottle as an example of this. It’s an independently owned modern bar offering six real ales in casks and a further six key kegs dispensing craft beers and is a popular choice. If you’re in Warrington, check out The Palmyra which is known for its delicious cocktails, and over in Macclesfield, The Swan With Two Necks is one of the most established live music venues in the town where you’ll discover both signed and unsigned live bands, karaoke and an open mic night every week. Cheshire has plenty to offer but is also perfectly placed for tourists to enjoy all the nightlife that nearby Liverpool and Manchester have. Neither are too far away to mix up local nights with visits to the bigger cities that are on the doorstep. l

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“THIS BAR HAS BEEN MODELLED ON THE PROHIBITION ERA OF THE 1920s. IT’S DEFINITELY WORTH A VISIT FOR THE COCKTAILS ALONE, AS WELL AS THE SULTRY DÉCOR AND BACKGROUND MUSIC”

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE


PROPERTY

IF YOU’RE PLANNING TO STAY LONGER... People come to Cheshire for many reasons – and stay for a lot more!

ARENA PHOTO UK/SHUTTERSTOCK.COM; GETTY IMAGES/ISTOCKPHOTO

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to anyone with a love of the outdoors, including Bickerton Hill Mow Cop, Helsby Hill and Thurstaston Common. Unsurprisingly though, the vast diversity of Cheshire’s historic and modern offerings means the county contains some of the highest value property prices outside of the South of England. Alderley Edge, for example, is a beautiful old Cheshire village steeped in history, a firm favourite of the stars (not to mention the glamorous Real Housewives of Cheshire of course). In the mid-1800s, wealthy cotton barons from Manchester came to the village, fell in love with it and built a number of large mansions on The Edge as their holiday homes, many of which are still standing today. Just like West Cheshire, Alderley Edge is diverse in its properties, boasting both semi detached houses and mansions, 1930s properties, a range of 1960/70 developments of detached homes, as well as modern purpose built apartment developments. With its cycle trails, beautiful walks and fascinating history, if you are passionate about your hobbies, then Cheshire is the place for you. It is a place that is brimming with vitality and whatever you’re looking to buy, there is so much to choose from and you’re guaranteed to find it here. But don’t just take our word for it – explore it yourself, because it’s more than worth it. l

heshire was recently voted the third happiest place to live in Britain, and it’s small wonder the county is one of the most desired counties to set up home in; not only does it feature stunning and beautiful landscape countryside, but its location at the heart of the north west means you’re also never far from the bustling cities of Manchester and Liverpool. And Cheshire’s close proximity to North Wales means the coast is also only up the road, so you really are spoilt for choice. Property in the city of Chester can range from quaint terraced houses which ooze history, to super-modern apartment blocks just a stone’s throw from the city centre. Within the city walls, or overlooking the river and racecourse it’s not unusual to find Georgian town houses, stone built cottages and Victorian terraces, the latter of which are popular with students who want to rent in the city. But if you’re looking for something a bit more rural, the pretty villages of Tarvin, Tarporley, Tattenhall, Kelsall and Malpas are just a short car ride from Chester. All contain excellent local amenities and offer a mixture of older, traditional properties including farms, alongside modern housing – with new developments having been built in all of the villages in recent years. They all feature stunning views of the Cheshire countryside that would appeal

“UNSURPRISINGLY THOUGH, THE VAST DIVERSITY OF CHESHIRE’S HISTORIC AND MODERN OFFERINGS MEANS THE COUNTY CONTAINS SOME OF THE HIGHEST VALUE PROPERTY PRICES OUTSIDE OF THE SOUTH OF ENGLAND”

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BUSINESS

WE’RE OPEN FOR BUSINESS! By Damian Waters, CBI Regional Director for the North West

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hen some friends of mine visited from America a few years ago, they took one look at the historic buildings in Chester and convinced themselves that it was all a modern recreation of the old. I’m pleased to say that isn’t the case and that the history of Chester is genuine and something that is enjoyed greatly by tourists and business visitors. Chester can trace its history back to Roman Britain, when it was established as a fort almost 2,000 years ago and has been ruled, in turn, by Saxons, Danes and Normans. Whilst many of the visitors to modern day Chester come to experience and sample that wealth of history, many do not appreciate its long and interesting business heritage. The choice of location of the fort for the Roman army wasn’t haphazard and that location has played a vital role in the business heritage of the city. Located on the border of Wales and close to the cities of Liverpool and Manchester, Chester played a vital role in the industrial revolution. Its strategic location ensured that not only were workers available to drive the growth of the new industries, but it was also able to exploit the new wealth and grow into one of the most important cities in England. Further back in history (hard to believe now for visitors to the city given that it is seven miles from the coast) Chester was an important port with access to the sea via the River Dee. It was the gateway to Ireland and became home to many wealthy traders around the port. Goods flowed into the city from Germany, Spain, France and further afield; the city became particularly well known for the part it played in the fur trade. p85

“WHILST MANY OF THE VISITORS TO CHESTER COME TO EXPERIENCE AND SAMPLE THE WEALTH OF HISTORY, MANY DO NOT APPRECIATE ITS LONG AND INTERESTING BUSINESS HERITAGE”

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE

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WELCOME TO CHESHIRE!

If you’re planning your next visit, or you want some reminders of this one, visit:

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BUSINESS

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“CHESTER IS IDEALLY-LOCATED FOR SERVICING DISTRIBUTION CHAINS BOTH NORTH AND SOUTH, AND EAST AND WEST”

However, as the River Dee silted up, the port moved further along the river into the estuary and eventually Liverpool became the dominant player. As the port declined, one would have expected the city to follow suit, but Chester continued to remain a wealthy city. Its location ensured that the landed gentry and wealthy business leaders from nearby Liverpool and Manchester continued to live in the city. During the industrial revolution many wealthy business leaders fled the sprawl and grime of the larger cities in favour of the more affluent Chester. In many ways, that trend has set the scene for modern Chester. The proportion of manufacturing output in Chester is one of the lowest in the country and the economy is almost entirely dependent on the service sector. However, within a short distance of Chester there is a high dependence on manufacturing (particularly chemicals) and the number of Chester residents engaged in that sector is high. Clearly people are still commuting in much the same manner as those during the Industrial Revolution. In recent years Chester has grown a particular focus on financial services and Chester Business Park is home to a number of large service centres for the country’s biggest banks. In addition to financial services, Chester has also seen good economic growth from real estate services and R&D businesses. Areas that have been identified as those offering good future growth potential such as pharmaceuticals, energy, software, media and creative industries, and other IT services are under represented. However, Chester has a higher than average number of people working in senior management levels and a higher number of people engaged in skilled employment. Chester benefits from having an educated population, with skills significantly higher than the average in the UK and the opportunities to grow new sectors of the economy as a result, are good. New businesses focussing on growth

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in power, innovation and engineering are well established an offer new employment opportunities. However, the population is, on average, older than the rest of the UK and ageing more quickly; many young people move away from the city to seek opportunities in the wider region or elsewhere in the UK. Chester does suffer from the fact that there are two major cities within very close quarters, namely Liverpool and Manchester. In recent years both have developed highly successful shopping destinations that have drawn people away from Chester. Without being able to compete directly with these cities as a retail destination, Chester’s shopping experience has waned and a number of key retailers have moved out of the city. The city’s location, however, provides benefit. Being close to two very large cities and the ‘gateway’ to North Wales, the city and surrounding region has a high density of distribution companies and networks. Chester is ideally-located for

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servicing distribution chains both north and south, and east and west. Chester also benefits from being highly-attractive for investment decisions, combining the high educational standards of the population and the beauty of the city, with good communication links. The city also benefits from having higher than average business start up rates and there are a number of vibrant support networks for smaller businesses. A visit to Chester at any time of the year is rewarding; the city if one of the best preserved walled cities in Europe, the retail and business centre is attractive and inspiring and the surrounding country side is some of the best there is. The Romans may well not have been thinking 2,000 years hence when they established their fort here in 79AD, but they certainly chose their location wisely and laid the foundations of a city that still has much to offer and has a vital role to play in the 21st century economy. l

WELCOME TO CHESHIRE


KIDS GO FREE!

2018 RACING FIXTURES city day

ladies day

Wednesday 9 May

Thursday 10 May

MBNA

HALEWOOD

Children aged 17 and under are eligible to attend all racedays at Chester completely FREE of charge

188bet

chester cup day Friday 11 May

SPORTINGBET

ROMAN DAY

Summer Saturday

LADIES EVENING

Saturday 26 May

Saturday 16 June

Friday 29 June

MATTHEW CLARK

MR GREEN

SIGNATURE LIVING

Summer FESTIVAL

LADIES & GENTS EVENING

CITY PLATE DAy

Saturday 30 June

Friday 13 July

Saturday 14 July

STELLA ARTOIS

MBNA

FOXY BINGO

MIDSUMMER MEETING

FAMILY FUNDAY

LADIES day

Saturday 28 July

Sunday 5 August

Saturday 1 September

MBNA

AUTUMN FESTIVAL

32RED

AUTUMN FESTIVAL

GOLDEN SQUARE SHOPPING CENTRE

Friday 14 September

Saturday 15 September

Saturday 29 September

POLO FIXTURES

SEASON FINALE

Friday 8 & Saturday 9 June Friday 7 & Saturday 8 September

Tickets are available from £10 I Hospitality packages available from £50*

01244 304 600 I chester-races.com *

Prices are per person +VAT at the current prevailing rate, based on a White Horse Garden Package.


VISIT CHESTER RACECOURSE ALL YEAR ROUND

With 15 days of racing, two weekends of polo and 365 days of dining, there’s always something happening on the Roodee The Racecourse, Chester, CH1 2LY chester-races.com I 01244 304 600

Chester Racecourse I Chester Polo 1539 Restaurant & Bar I The White Horse Gastro Pub


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MANCHESTER’S LUXURY SHOPPING & DINING DESTINATION

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F E AT U R I N G

Welcome to Cheshire  

Unique, beautifully designed, high-quality visitor guide, which is available in leading hotel bedrooms. For those enjoying a break, or stayi...

Welcome to Cheshire  

Unique, beautifully designed, high-quality visitor guide, which is available in leading hotel bedrooms. For those enjoying a break, or stayi...