Thursday, 27 February 2020

Abington Park

Abington Park is Northampton's oldest and most popular park. It contains a museum, sports facilities, 6 all weather tennis courts (£6 per hour) a cafe, lakes, and a garden for the blind. It is an amazing focal point and used by many groups such as running, boot camp and Pokémon hunters!

There is a band stand where live music is played on Sundays during the summer, a large play area and church.  Lots of events are held throughout the year such as Race for Life, Fun Fairs, and National play day.

I love Abington Park but I am finding the play area could do with a few larger pieces of equipment for the older children like a zip wire, larger climbing frames or obstacle course (similar to Stanwick Lakes) as it does not suit teens who have outgrown the equipment. 

Abington Park

The museum was recently renovated and is a lovely old grade 1 listed building and usual open hours are 12 to 4pm and admission is free.   The museum plays host to lots of events recently the vegan fair was there in February, March brings the vintage & daft fail and April is 3d animal model making, playful puppet craft and Easter egg trail.

There is no parking but there is always room on one of the many streets the encompass the park such as Abington Park Crescent, Christchurch road or Ardington Road.


Monday, 24 February 2020

Easter 2020 things to do in Northamptonshire

Easter will soon be here hurrah! Easter Sunday is 12th April 2020 and Northampton schools break up Friday 3rd April and return Monday 20th April (make sure you check teacher training days as these differ). 

Due to the current coranavirus outbreak some events maybe cancelled or postponed.

If you are looking for things to do with kids in Northamptonshire this Easter, I've got lots of Easter events to inspire you.

With spring finally emerging and the weather hopefully warming up there's loads to do to get outside in the fresh air and hopefully get some sunshine. Below is lots of things to do in Northamptonshire during the Easter half term.  There's a mixture of indoor and outdoor to suit all eventualities because you know British weather!

Delapre Abbey, Northampton

Delapre Abbey

Saturday 4th April to Sunday 19th April 11am to 4pm.  Delapre's Chocolate Factory.  Solve the chocolate factory puzzle and earn your golden ticket.  £5 per child and £2.50 per adult chaperone. 5+ and chaperone receives an end of trail refreshment.

Abington Park Museum, Northampton
Easter Egg Trail Tuesday 7th to Monday 13th 1pm to 5pm.  A chocolate egg as a prize for every child. £1.50 per child Drop in – no booking required
Also 3d Model making Tuesday 7th April 1.30 to 2.30 and 2.45 to 3.45 £4 per child booking essential.  Playful puppet Wednesday 8th April same time and price.

Easter Egg Hunt, Wootton Community Centre

Friday 10th April 10.30 to 1.30 £3 per child which includes an Easter egg.  Will also be bouncy castle, face painting and raffle.

Easter Egg Hunt at Harlestone Firs
Sunday 5th April 11am £1 per child hosted by Ashbourne Day Nursery you must confirm attendance with them by 20th March

Easter Egg Hunt at Millennium Green Desborough
Monday 13th April 2 to 4pm  Free event near to St Giles Church

Easter Family Fun day Spinney Hill Pub
Sunday 12th April 12 to 5pm Stalls, face painting, bouncy castle, petting zoo & more.

Easter Craft Fayre Northampton Working Men's Club
Sunday 5th April 12 to 3pm Children receive a free Easter chocolate bar on entry. Entrance is free.

Vintage Easter at Holdenby
How about something a bit different a Victorian Easter! Visit Holdenby House 10 to 4pm. Sunday 12th April & Monday 13th April.  Falconry display, Magic shows, Egg rolling, Easter egg hunt and lots more.  Child admission £4.50 and adult £8 or £9.50 depending on the day.  Under 3's FREE.

Easter fun day and chocolate run 2020, The Obelisk Centre

Sunday 5th April 2020 - The run is back for the 3rd year.  Full details not yet announced. The more you run the more chocolate you get 20 laps max. 

Easter Family Fun Daventry Leisure Centre

Sunday 29th March 11am to 4pm.  Free entry.  Local stalls, bouncy castle, Easter scavenger hunt, raffle, craft station and more.

Easter Egg Hunt The Centre, Mawsley
Sunday 12th April 1 to 3pm  £3.50 per child help Flopsy find her bunnies and get an egg as a reward.

Easter Egg Decorating, Swanage Shopping Centre, Wellingborough
Wednesday 1st April 10am to 12.  In the community lounge decorate an egg with edible decorations.

Easter Trail Rutland Water
Friday 3rd April to Monday 20th April 11am to 3pm £3 per person.  Go to the Rutland Waterside Café LE15 8HD

Easter Sunday Funday, East Carlton Country Park, Corby, Northamptonshire
Sunday 12th April 11am to 3pm.  Easter Bonnet Parade, an Easter Egg Hunt and orienterring trail.  £4 per activity or £10 for all.

Great Doddington Easter Egg Hunt
Friday 10th April 11am to 1pm  £2.30 per entry, go to the hall for hot drinks, snacks, cakes and games.  Complete the trail and receive a prize.

National Trust, Multiple locations nationwide

The National Trust are teamed up with Cadbury's for Easter Egg hunts for the final year!  Our nearest locations are Canons Ashby, Stowe, Lyveden and Waddesdon Manor.  Check website for all locations and dates.  Canons Ashby is on 10th, 11th, 12th and 13th 10am to 4pm. £3 per trail (normal admission applies).

Easter Egg Trail & House Opening, Deene Park, NN17 3EG
12th and 13th April 12 to 5pm House & Gardens £12 adult and £6 child and 0-4 Free.  Child admission includes a family fun easter hunt with a prize.  

West Lodge Rural Centre, Desborough, Northamptonshire

West Lodge

10th, 11th, 12th and 13th April Easter Eggstravaganza!
Easter Quiz, follow clues around the farm which will lead you to the Easter Bunny and receive an Easter egg, paint an egg, take part in the egg and spoon race and egg painting competition.
West Lodge also has lambs, the very popular barrel ride and pig racing plus an indoor play barn.

Mini Meadows Farm, Naseby, Northamptonshire

Mini Meadows
10th, 11th, 12th and 12th April Easter Extravaganza! Feed the gorgeous lambs £1 per bottle. Egg and spoon race, make a sock bunny, have your face painted (charge applies) and watch 'Hop' in the special film zone (charge applies adults and under 1's free) Mini Meadows also has a brilliant indoor sand pit and new indoor play barn.  Normal entry charge is £5 per person.

Northampton & Lamport Easter Railway
11th, 12th and 13th Easter special at £5.20 adult and £4.20 children. Train journey & creme egg. Take a ride the Easter Egg Special trains on a 4-mile round trip. Afterwards, enjoy a walk along the Brampton Valley Way a 14-mile “linear park” along the historic Northampton to Market Harborough line, or take another ride on the train with a All Day Rover ticket. Timetable: 11:00, 12:00, 13:00, 14:00, 15:00 & 16:00   

Evenley Wood Garden, Northamptonshire, NN13 5SH

6th to 13th April – Easter Eggstravaganza
Easter hunts, crafts and activities galore!

Old Dairy Farm Craft Centre, nr Weedon, Northamptonshire

Not quite Easter but a lovely springtime event.  The lambing sheds will be open Saturdays and Sundays, between the 14 of March and 5th April between 10.00am & 4.30pm.  £2 charge per person.

Castle Ashby, Northampton

11th and 12th April. Amazing Easter Egg hunt which gets very busy.  To combat this it is now ticket ONLY so make sure you book from 1st March. 10am to 12.30pm.  Tickets have been postponed due to coranavirus.

Manor House Museum, Kettering

Play day 8th and 15th April 10am to 3pm lots to do in the Manor House Museum, Alfred East Art Gallery and Gallery Gardens.

Free worksheets and trails all year round!

During the school holidays free craft table with supplies
More to be announced...

Easter Egg Hunt & Disco, Roade Football Club

Friday 10th April 2020 - The trail will be open from 1.30pm until approx. 3, following this is the Brite lites Disco.  Trail sheets cost £2 and can be purchased on the day. No need to book , just turn up and enjoy. Limited to 180 children.

Lings Forum Cinema, Northampton

Lots out to entertain the kids.  Onward (PG) My Spy (12A) more to be announced £5.20 per person cheaper with a leisure card

**Remember VUE in Northampton is currently £4.99 per person per film any time any date with a booking fee if online**

The Wizard of Oz Easter Panto 2020, The Deco, Northampton

6th and 7th April 3.30pm, 7pm and 2pm and 6pm.

All singing all dancing family panto. **Please double check all details before arriving**


Saturday, 15 February 2020

Irchester Country Park

Irchester Country park has a fabulous enclosed children's play area as well as trails through 200 acres of mixed woodland. You can just wander or follow 1 of 3 trails woodpecker, woodland or ironstone.  My kids love climbing up the hills and exploring but do take wellies in the winter as it can get muddy! 

Irchester Country Park

There is also Quarryman's rest cafe, Jungle Parc UK (£20 per child) and the Irchester Narrow Gauge Railway museum. The museum is open every Sunday 10am to 4pm (3pm in winter) and entry is free. 

Parking is £3.20 for up to 4 hours and £5.20 for up to 8 hours. 

There are events on throughout the year including Nature Tots for 2-4 year olds £3.50 per child and Irchester Country Parkrun every Saturday morning at 9am.

Saturday, 8 February 2020

Snowdrops in Northamptonshire

January is behind us and many of us are looking forward to Spring but February brings with it lighter evenings and snowdrops!

Get outside, enjoy the lighter days, wrap up warm and enjoy the snowdrops around Northamptonshire.

Coton Manor is well know for its magnificent bluebells but also has a beautiful display of snowdrops. Open Saturday 15th February to Sunday 1st March 2020 11am to 4pm £8 adults and £3 children NN6 8RQ

Evenley Woods has snowdrops 1st February to 1st March 10am to 4pm.  The café is open Friday to Sunday 11am to 3.30pm £6 adults and £1 children aged 4 to 16.  NN13 5SH

18th February to 21st February there is also half term activities for children.  For a small fee children can make a bird feeder or take part in the bug trail.

Badby Woods (near Daventry) parking is limited especially at weekends recommended to use picnic area on the A361 north of the village. The ancient woodlands have snowdrops on show during February.

Lamport Hall & Gardens is hosting a snowdrop walk Saturday 15th & Sunday 16th February the gardens will be open 11am to 3pm £5 adults and £2 children aged 11 to 18 and under 11's free! To access the house charges increase to £11 and £6. Light refreshments will be available from Saul's of Spratton in the carriage house. NN6 9HD

Many National Trust properties have snowdrops within the gardens Waddesdon & Stowe both have snowdrop walks.

Evenley Gardens 2018


Tuesday, 4 February 2020

Belton House National Trust

Belton House is a quintessential British country house in enormous grounds.  It is one of the National Trust properties that really does offer something for everyone.  A massive outdoor adventure playground, a miniature train for the little ones (charge applies), Stables and Ride Play café, second-hand bookshop and masses of space.  Spot the wild deer, wander through the woodland and find the gothic ruin water feature.

We loved Belton House as it suited all our family needs. Play area for the children and lovely fresh air and walks for the adults.  We didn't venture inside the house preferring outside adventures at National Trust properties but this is one I can wholeheartedly recommend.

If you fancy a little look watch this short video


Littlesea Haven Tried & Tested

Littlesea Haven is near Weymouth and has access to the famous Jurassic Coast.  Littlesea is a lovely compact site with a two tier arcade which my children loved, 3 tier show bar and nice indoor pool. The entertainment complex is the hub and very central with the caravans splintering off uphill in all directions. If you are hungry you can choose from Haven's Mash & Barrel, Cook's fish & chips, Papa John's pizza (who will deliver to your caravan) and Starbucks.

If you would like to see a mini tour of the Littlesea Haven complex you can watch this short video

There's loads to do onsite ranging from play areas, adventure golf, archery, indoor & outdoor swimming (depending on season) and multi sports court but if you fancy exploring the local area I can recommend some fab family friendly places.

Portland Bill - The famous lighthouse. Sadly, when we visited it was closed for refurbishment but the gift shop & small museum were open £2 per adult and free for children. The lighthouse is due to be reopened in Spring 2020 and will be £7 per adult and £5 per child family ticket £20.  My children loved exploring the rocky coastline and looking for fossils. After have lunch or treat at The Lobster Pot cafe which was lovely & had amazing homemade quiche!

On the way back to site make sure you stop briefly to take a picture of the Olympic rings & enjoy the view over Portland.

Durdledoor - Visit this breath-taking beach it really is stunning in all weather. Beware though it is a long way down! We were slightly taken aback. It is well worth it but I needed oxygen staggering back up! 😆

Lulworth Castle - If you fancy something a little historic visit the beautiful Lulworth Castle. There's also a small children's play area, café (can be used without paying admission charge for the castle) and events on throughout the year. We took part in the Halloween bat treasure hunt. The castle is closed over the winter months and re-opens 29th March 2020.