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New Forest & Hampshire County Show with Midi & Marguerite

New Forest & Hampshire County Show
We headed to the New Forest and Hampshire County show with a picnic packed, ready for a wonderful, exciting day. This was the 94th year of the show and this event brings people from all over the New Forest and rural Hampshire together to show us what they do. The ‘old time farming’ section was interesting featuring old methods of farming and we learnt how these methods have changed and developed over time. 

 Everyone enjoyed a delicious ice cream treat. 

 Delicious homemade cakes in the  
 ‘bake and cake’ tent, where we viewed the winning homemade cakes and biscuits. There was an under 5 year old category and some of the entries looked very professional. We all really enjoyed looking at the bee keepers tent, too.


Off next to the show farm and young farmers section, seeing the winning cattle, goats and sheep

The ‘Axemen’ were in action in the arena and they put on a spectacular show. Individuals and pairs showed us their skills when splitting and cutting wood both on ground level and high up. The precision was amazing.

 Watching the show jumping competitions in the show ring, racing against the clock was really exciting; the speed of the horses was simply breath taking.

 Most nights we were treated to fantastic nights of entertainment. One of our favourite shows featured hit songs from the 60’s right up to the present day. We hit the dance floor and danced all night. 

 It was a glorious day and we took in the spectacular views. We could even see the infamous Needles in the distance on the Isle of Wight. We had packed a picnic which we enjoyed whilst enjoying the seaside views.
 A lovely day was spent at Beaulieu and Bucklers Hard, a unique 18th century village where warships for Nelsons navy were built. We wandered through the apple orchard where fruit is picked each autumn and used to make Beaulieu apple juice. Plums were also abundant. 


 The Maritime museum was well worth the visit. It shows the development of the village, the story of its ships, it’s connection with Nelson, the role of the river in WW11 and the lives of its residents who lived and worked here during the 18-20th centuries. We then enjoyed a boat cruise along the Beaulieu river. This was a tranquil cruise accompanied by commentary revealing its history. 

 The Beaulieu car museum has over 140 years of motoring history. It was also ‘Chitty Chitty Bang Bangs’ 50 years exhibition and we were lucky to see a ‘truly scrumptious’ collection of never-before-seen memorabilia, artwork and props from this classic family favourite film. We stepped inside Coggins garage and viewed Caractacus Potts inventions including the humbug sweet machine. On show was also the original child catcher carriage, never before seen in the UK. 

 Surprisingly, we also picked the day to visit when the ‘super car’ event was on. It was great to see various top of the range fast cars and they were beautiful machines. 

We wandered around the beautiful gardens and around the ruins of Beaulieu Abbey, stopping to watch a bird of prey show. It was wonderful to watch. 

Yorkshire Dales, TV Soap Country with Faye & Mick

Yorkshire Dales, TV Soap Country 

A great morning was spent at the famous Woolpack Inn that was originally featured in the TV soap, Emmerdale. The pub was adorned with photographs of cast members, both past and present, and everyone enjoyed taking a trip down memory lane. We were even lucky enough to be invited behind the bar to “pull a pint”

We made our way through the woodland path and up to Skipton Castle. We were amazed at the grandeur of the medieval building that has stood the test of time for 900 years and explored the grounds before entering the Banqueting Hall and hidden chambers. Some of us were brave enough to climb from the depths of the Dungeon to the top storey of the Watch Tower.

  Sitting back we enjoyed the views as we drifted down the historic Springs Branch and onto the Leeds and Liverpool Canal as our skipper gave us an in depth talk about the history of the area. 

Pickering is the start of the North Yorkshire Moors Railway running from Pickering all the way through to Whitby. Our destination was Goathland, the home of the classic soap hit, Heartbeat. Once we had purchased our tickets we boarded the steam train and it was really exciting as we heard the chuffing of the steam engine pulling out of the station. We learnt that this railway line and train have been used for the filming for Heartbeat and the first Harry Potter film. 

As we arrived at Goathland, straight away our excitement grew as we saw the pub with the garage opposite, just like on the TV program. A little further on to the village shops and tea room was the police car, used in the TV series.

The Yorkshire Birds of Prey were showing some of the birds they work with and look after. We saw a golden eagle and lots of owls. The owls were all used as actor birds in the Harry Potter films and we were so lucky to be able to hold and stroke them. The snowy owl is called Hedwig and is Harry Potters’ very own owl! We had met a genuine film star!

It was in the small town of Holmfirth and surrounding countryside that all 20 series of Last of the Summer Wine was filmed. We started at Sid’s Cafe with a light lunch and then walked to the house where Nora Batty and her wrinkled stockings lived and Compo in the house underneath. Here, we saw lots of memorabilia and even a dressing up box of the characters distinctive clothes to try on. 

We stopped  at the amazing ruins of Whitby Abbey before going for a traditional fish and chip supper on the sea front. The perfect way to end a great day out. 

We parked right next to York Minster and were very impressed by how big it was.We had an enjoyable time walking round the Medieval streets of York, exploring what the shops had to offer.

The afternoon was spent at the National Railway Museum. It is an impressive museum with lots of famous engines and trains to see. We were then able to climb in the train drivers cabins as well as seeing the carriages. We took the opportunity of seeing the engines from below as well as above. We saw the first ever train all the way through to the Shinkansen and EuroStar. Great moments were seeing the Flying Scotsman, possibly the most famous of all steam engines and the Mallard; the fastest of all steam engines. 

 At a local working farm called Big Sheep Little Cow,  we had a tour and saw what the farmers house looked like 50 years ago. We were able to handle and stroke many animals including mice, ferrets, tortoises and larger animals like pigs, goats, a donkey and a llama. We arrived at the end of the tour just in time to feed the young lambs. It was really exciting! The lambs kept jumping up to get the bottles of milk that we were holding and they were very noisy too with their bleating. 

A visit to the Wensleydale Creamery to see how they made this famous cheese is always a great day out. The tour took us on a history of the cheeses and then into the factory to see it being made. There were lots of interactive displays and we enjoyed pushing the buttons and watching the films. We saw the cheese loving characters, Wallace and Gromit and had a photo with them before going into the shop where we were able to sample some of these delights. 

On the way home, we stopped off to see Aysgarth Falls; this is where Robin Hood Prince of Thieves was filmed. Someone at the falls showed us exactly where Robin Hood had a fight with Little John.