Explore the Past

Skipton Castle

Visit Skipton Castle, a 900 year old medieval castle and one of the best preserved in England, and discover every nook and cranny from the privy to the banqueting hall. There is plenty to keep you busy here. You can also enjoy special events such as live theatre in the grounds to fighting displays of the famous War of the Roses.

Opening Times: Daily from 10am (Sunday 12 noon), except for 25 December. Last admission is at 6pm (October – February 4pm).

Photo Credits: © Copyright Skipton Castle

Find out more

www.skiptoncastle.co.uk

Green’s Mill

Green's Mill

Learn about this 200 Year Old Iconic Mill in Sneinton, Nottingham.

Built in 1807 and home to famous mathematician George Green, the mill is still producing organic, award winning flour whenever the wind allows. Discover the contribution George Green made to the science of today and how flour is produced by the power of the wind. The science centre has hands on exhibits for children to enjoy while the adults can read about the 200 year history of this iconic mill.

Activities and special events are held throughout the year, baking and craft for the kids and tours can be prebooked for groups and schools. The site is mainly staffed by volunteers who kindly give up their time to keep this Nottingham landmark standing proudly on our skyline.

Opening times: 10am-4pm (Wednesday-Sunday) – Admission is FREE

It’s a great day out for all the family!

©Copyright Green's Mill and Science Centre

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Visit the Green's Mill website

A Quirky Day

Anthony Gormley’s modern sculpture, ‘Another Place’

Have a quirky family day out at Crosby’s non-bathing beach.

Be in awe with Anthony Gormley’s modern sculpture, ‘Another Place’, which consists of 100 cast iron, life-size figures standing along three kilometres of foreshore and stretching one kilometre out to sea. All of the figures were casts of the artist’s body and each figure looks out to sea and stares at the horizon as though in silent expectation.

According to Gormley, ‘Another Place’, with its cast-iron figures standing in the ebb and flow of the tide explores man’s relationship with nature. These marvellous figures, weighing 650 kilos, are well-worth visiting – and at sunset they look even more remarkable. But please remember, it is not a bathing beach and it has an area with soft sand and mud, and a risk of changing tides. Visitors should stay within 50 metres of the promenade at all tides and not attempt to walk out to the furthest figures.

It’s an interesting and unusual day out for all the family!

© Sefton Council

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Our Lovely Heritage

Old Sarum

Visit one of English Heritage’s sites this Summer!
Take in the vista of the Wiltshire countryside at Old Sarum, originally an Iron Age settlement which was occupied by the Romans, Normans and Saxons. It also once held a cathedral on the hilltop. Learn about the history of the site and how it would have looked over the 5,000 years it was occupied. Climb the mighty ramparts for views over the Wiltshire plains and imagine the once thriving town of Old Sarum!

©Copyright English Heritage Photo Library

www.english-heritage.org.uk

Thackray Museum

Thackray Museum

Have a great day out at the Thackray Medical Museum in Leeds.

This beautiful 150 year old grade 2 listed building was formerly the Leeds Union Workhouse. With nine interactive galleries, the fascinating exhibitions and collections tell a story that affects us all.

Hear and smell what it was like to walk the grimy streets of Victorian Leeds, find out what it was like to undergo an operation without anaesthetic and explore your body in our jaw-dropping Life Zone gallery. Discover how medicine past and present is changing your future. With regular events and family activities we offer fun and interest for all ages.

Tickets last for a full year!

©Copyright Thackray Medical Museum

Visit the Thackray Medical Museum website

Mappi Mundi

Mappi Mundi

Hereford Cathedral is fortunate to care for two important historical treasures.

The Mappa Mundi is a late 13th Century map of the world and is a pictorial encyclopaedia, adorned by strange beasts and other characters that tell stories from the bible and classical myth. With Jerusalem at the centre, it provides a unique insight into the medieval mind.

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

© Copyright Hereford Cathedral

www.herefordcathedral.org

Tea Clipper

Cutty Sark

Cutty Sark, London is the world’s sole surviving tea clipper, the speed machine of her time and living testimony to the bygone, glorious days of sail. Built in 1869 to carry tea back from China, she visited nearly every major port in the world and gained fame for her record-breaking passages through the wildest oceans around the globe.

Designed to last just 30 years and now nearly five times that age, Cutty Sark has been painstakingly conserved and lifted by over three metres, allowing you to explore her decks and gaze up underneath her hull in an immersive experience that brings her fascinating history to life.

© Copyright RMG

Visit the RMG website

Elgar Birthplace Museum

Elgar Birthplace Museum

Visit Elgar Birthplace, the Museum provides a fascinating insight into the life and music of Sir Edward Elgar, one of England’s greatest composers.

The Museum has two buildings, the modern Elgar Centre and the atmospheric Birthplace Cottage. Together they reveal the great man behind the music.

© Copyright The Elgar Birthplace Museum

Visit the Elgar Birthplace Museum webpage

Bird World

Our Favourites - Bird World

With many of us distracted by our busy lifestyles, we rarely have time to look up and appreciate the beauty of the world around us. By venturing outside on a blustery spring day in the UK, you can spot a ‘wild’ variety of wildlife that is often overlooked and unappreciated. Notice the squirrels chasing each other up trees and birds collecting supplies to help build their nests!

Spring is here and garden birds are busy collecting the last of their nest materials as over the next few weeks they will be incubating their eggs and preparing for the challenge of raising young chicks!

This can be a difficult process for your garden birds as spring is known for its damp and somewhat dangerous weather to the species; birds must have built sturdy nests to protect themselves from the elements for all of their offspring to survive.

To help your garden birds have the best chance of survival once their chicks are hatched, why not provide your garden visitors with food and shelter supplies that are readily available to them for when they leave their nests late spring with their chicks! Berries are a great source of vitamins which are perfect for providing the new parents with the energy they need to look after their brood, also ensure there is a water source available in case of dry weather spells where water may be lacking.

Although the RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch is over, with 8,262,662 birds spotted overall, why not take a walk this weekend and discover what birds have taken up residence in your neighbourhood?

© Photo and content provided by Living With Birds

www.livingwithbirds.com

Flower Power

Flower Power

Whether you have a couple of acres in the countryside or a small back yard, you probably have room for a few flowers. A huge number of insects depend on flowers for nectar and pollen, so growing them in your garden – in borders, window boxes or pots – is a great way to attract a huge variety of insect visitors.

Pollinators such as bees, hover flies and butterflies are perhaps the best known of the flower-feeding insects, but even predatory insects like ladybirds will enjoy a feast of floral food if they can find one. Many flower-feeding insects have struggled in recent years, however, as wild-flowers have become less abundant in the countryside and exotic and highly cultivated varieties have become more common in our gardens. Whilst the latter may appear pleasing to the eye and hard to resist when browsing at your local garden centre, all too often they offer little or no accessible food for flower feeding insects.

Selecting and growing the ‘right’ insect-friendly flowers is therefore not only a great way to attract insects, but also a great way to help our declining pollinator populations. With gardens covering over 1 million hectares of Britain, they could represent a real haven for flower-feeding insects – especially if we all grow those plants with real ‘Flower Power’.

Top Tips and links that I like!

  • Choose the right plants. Where possible try to avoid planting hybrid cultivars, especially those with double flowers. These are often sterile, and therefore offer no food to nectar and pollen feeders. It’s also important to consider flowering season as our flower-feeding insects need nectar and pollen from early spring right through to late autumn.
  • Try to remember that different insects will make use of different types of flowers according to their size and shape and features such as tongue length. Including a range of different flowers should encourage a range of insects into your garden whilst also filling your space with an attractive variety of colourful blooms.
  • If space is really at a premium, consider including highly ‘generalist’ flowers that are good for a range of insects. Cornflower and other knapweeds, for example, have long flowering periods and make their nectar freely available to many insects.
  • Some garden centers may use plant labels that provide at least some of the necessary information to help you choose the right flowers. Don’t worry if yours doesn’t though as there is a lot of useful information that can be found online. The Bumblebee Conservation Trust, for example, provides details of all kinds of plants that are good for bees – as well as their flowering periods – on their gardening pages. You can also pick up some useful tips on the BBC’s wildlife gardening pages. I’d also recommend a visit to the ‘Wild About Gardens’ web page, as well as the Gardeners World page on wildlife friendly plants.

By Dave George, National Insect Week Advisor

© Copyright National Insect Week

www.nationalinsectweek.co.uk

1st Grade Pier

Clevedon Pier

Visit the only Grade 1 pier in England at Clevedon, North Somerset, which has stood the test of time.

Enjoy stunning views of the West Country and the Severn Estuary, then afterwards spend time in the Pier’s Art Gallery and then in the shop. For those of you who prefer the outdoors you can do some fishing from the pier and take a boat ride too.

© Photo Copyright Clevedon Pier

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Did you know?

Moon Jellyfish

The Moon Jellyfish is transparent and grows up to 40cm wide. It is shaped like an umbrella and has short hair-like tentacles around the edges, and four rings towards centre. They are mostly harmless to humans, though may sting sensitive skin.

Moon jellyfish are very common all around the UK, especially in sheltered waters in the west of Scotland. You can sometimes see large numbers of these jellies when our chilly seas begin to warm up, or cool down. When this happens, it is known as a jellyfish bloom.

© Copyright Jo Jamieson/MCS

www.mcsuk.org