Easter – a welcome break in the long run up to summer
Where is this year going? It’s a question we all ask not long after the festivities of Christmas and New Year have died away and we return to the daily grind, summer holidays a long way off and with little to look forward to in the meantime.
Like all others before it, the year is flying by, being as we are already more than a quarter of the way through 2014. But one festival I am always grateful for the arrival of is Easter, which is just a couple of weeks away. Not because of any particular religious convictions, but because it usually marks the onset of lighter nights, better weather, and is halfway between the warm glow of a family Christmas and the impending joy of the heady, long summer days.
Easter, like Christmas, is often a family affair, if we’re lucky with a couple of extra days away from the office thrown into the bargain with which to enjoy time spent with the people we love. But it can also be a time when holidaying children need entertaining, and that can lead to tears, tantrums and arguments which can threaten the jovial spirit of the time.
So with that in mind, we have compiled a list of things to do this Easter which should cater for all ages and tastes. Whatever you and your family enjoy doing, there is something for everyone to get involved with.
In no particularly order, they include:
- Pesky Bunnies of Bewilderwood, Hoveton, Norfolk
There's a new story being read at the Curious Treehouse Adventure: kids will hear the Pesky Bunnies tale, then make rabbit costumes, hit the egg trail and meet Cedric the Easter Bunny himself.
When: 7-22 April, 10am-5.30pm. Cost: adult £14.50, child £12.50, under 92cm free. Visit www.bewilderwood.co.uk.
- Squire School, Lincoln Castle
William the Conqueror began building Lincoln Castle in 1068; it's now undergoing a refurb, but little soldiers can still learn jousting techniques and medieval etiquette inside its ramparts.
When: 8, 10, 15 & 17 April, 10am-5pm. Cost: adult £2, child £1, family £5, under-5s free. Visit www.lincolnshire.gov.uk/visiting/historic-buildings/lincoln-castle.
- Sausages & Surveys, Lound Lakes Reserve, Great Yarmouth
Young Wardens (10- to 15-year-olds) will cook their own breakfast before setting off to survey the birds at this important Suffolk patchwork of fen meadow, woods and waterways – home to 140 species.
When: 11 April, 8.30am-noon. Cost: £6 (includes breakfast). Visit www.wildlifetrusts.org/reserves/lound-lakes.
- Subterranean Climb the Mine, Honister Slate Mine, Lake District
Set deep within Fleetwith Pike, this new experience will see brave bairns traverse an underground lake, scale rung-pocked rock-faces, cross Burma bridges and climb to the mine roof itself.
When: from 12 April, 10.30am, 12.30pm, 3pm. Cost: adult £19.95, child £14.95. Visit www.honister.com.
- Peter Rabbit Egg Hunt, Lake District
Potter around the Lakes, looking for eggs – and raising money for WaterAid. Pay a donation to access online clues and try to be the first to track down the 50 hand-crafted ceramic eggs.
When: 16 April, from 10am. Cost: Minimum donation £2. Visit www.hop-skip-jump.com/egg-hunt.
- Cadbury Eggsplorers Easter Egg Trail, countrywide
The National Trust has teamed up with the purveyors of purple-wrapped loveliness to create 300-plus trails across the country. Eggsplorers are encouraged to navigate NT lands – from coastlines to historic houses – and are rewarded with chocolatey treats.
When: 18-21 April. Cost: various. Visit www.eastereggtrail.co.uk.
This fine foodie fest's free Kids Cooking Workshops, run by the Academy of Culinary Arts, aim to get young chefs excited about food; classes range from how to cook a biriyani to making pizza from scratch.
When: 19-21 April, 10am-5pm. Cost: adult £6, under-12s free. www.chesterfoodanddrink.co.uk.
- Penguin Trail, The Deep, Hull
Forget chicks, this Easter is all about penguins. The gentoos have just arrived, and kids can follow the aquarium's new Penguin Trail and get their faces painted in the Explorers Den.
When: 5-27 April, 10am-6pm. Cost: adult from £10.35, child from £8.55, under-3s free, family from £33.84. Visit www.thedeep.co.uk.
- Horrible Histories, Warwick Castle
Inject Easter with sordid sagas, foul facts and dirty details as the Horrible Histories show takes residence at the 1,100-year-old castle. Don't miss the re-enacted battle between the Smashing Saxons and the Vicious Vikings.
When: from 5 April, 10am-6pm. Cost: adult £18.24, child £14.88. Visit www.warwick-castle.com.
- Spring into Easter, Shugborough Estate, Staffordshire
Meet the newborns at Georgian Park Farm – coo at bunnies, bottle-feed lambs and watch goats being milked. Also, find giant eggs in the formal gardens and daffodils along the river.
When: to 27 April, 11am-5pm. Cost: adult £12.50, child £7.50, under-5s free, family from £15.50. Visit www.shugborough.org.uk.
- Pop up festival of stories at Enginuity
Children’s writers, illustrators, poets and storytellers will be entertaining and inspiring families during an exciting day of free events, activities and art workshops celebrating children’s literature at Enginuity and Coalbrookdale Museum of Iron in Shropshire’s Ironbridge Gorge.
When: Easter Sunday. Cost: Free. Visit www.ironbridge.org.uk.
- Hottrax Club Bike Championships, Cadwell Park
Two wheel endurance racing featuring the Michelin Power Cup and MotoGrande, Minitwins, Maxitwins and Streetbike championships, at all Cadwell Park near Louth.
When: April 19 and 20, 8am to 6pm. Cost: Adults £10, under 13s free. Visit www.cadwellpark.co.uk.
- Easter Egg Hunt at Bridlington Birds of Prey and Animal Park
Check out the birds of prey and the rest of the animals while searching for hidden eggs.
When: April 19 and 20, 10am to 5pm. Cost: Adult £4.95, children £4, under 2s free. Visit www.bridlingtonanimalpark.co.uk.
- Family Fun Day, Ragley Hall, Warwickshire
Easter egg hunt, face painting, children’s fairground rides, falconry display and craft activities, as well as the normal guided tours of the house and refreshments.
When: April 12 to 27. Cost: Adults £2, children £1. Visit www.ragley.co.uk.
- Celebrating the Highland Games
Every year the best pipers, dancers and athletes compete at Highland gatherings in towns around Angus. The exhibition, at the Gateway to the Glens Museum, Kirriemuir, looks at the history of the games with display of dancing costumes, photographs and memorabilia.
When: April 1 – August 2, 10am to 5pm. Cost: Free. Visit www.angusahead.com.
From all of us here at Rix Petroleum, enjoy your East break!