Archive for November, 2010

Welcome To Thirsk – Home Of James Herriot

Thursday, November 25th, 2010
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As anyone who has stayed at one of our holiday cottages there will know, the traditional market town of Thirsk is well placed in the Vale of Mowbray, lying between the twin delights of the Yorkshire Dales and the North Yorkshire Moors. The town has a long history as a trading centre and mail-coach posting stage, and today it still buzzes around its ancient central market place. Nowadays, Thirsk is famous for its racecourse, and also for its association with Alf Wright, creator of the James Herriot novels, whose former veterinary surgery in the town has now been turned into a popular tourist attraction, the World of James Herriot Centre. (more…)

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The Sykes Cottages Guide To Newport, Isle of Wight

Wednesday, November 24th, 2010
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The geographical centre of the Isle of Wight, Newport is the island’s largest administrative and shopping centre, with a host of services and attractions for anyone staying at a holiday cottage there. One of the most popular visitor attractions is Carisbrooke Castle, together with the museum of local history, located in the centre of town. Charles I spent the final year of his life here, and artefacts on display range from toys to military pieces to fashions and textiles, always with a local connection, as well as information on much earlier evidence of settlement on the island. Look out for the donkeys still working the well in the well house, which dates from mediaeval times. (more…)

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Why Not Book A Holiday Cottage In Leominster?

Monday, November 22nd, 2010
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With roots tracing back as far as the seventh century, Leominster, in the heart of the attractive Marches area where the borders of England and Wales meet, is a delightful market town straight out of the pages of history. From the beautifully preserved black and white half-timbered houses/holiday cottages to the narrow streets, alleyways and overhanging buildings, this is a delightful place to spend a leisurely afternoon. Well known for its antiques shops, there are also plenty of independent and mainstream shops, and a lively Friday market on Corn Square at the heart of town. (more…)

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Going To See Harry Potter Tomorrow? Why Not Visit Hogwarts, Too?

Thursday, November 18th, 2010
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For the first, second and sixth Harry Potter films, Gloucester’s historic cathedral cloisters were transformed into the corridors of Hogwart’s School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. But this isn’t the only reason to book one of our Gloucester holiday cottages!

With a crazy cheese-rolling tradition, the farmer’s markets and a new, multi million pound waterfront, Gloucester is a city well worth spending a little time in. Gloucester’s docks once linked the inland city to the world, providing a flourishing Victorian trade route; 2009 saw the opening of Gloucester Quays, a £400 million new designer outlet retail centre which has given a huge boost to the city’s already appealing shopping experience.

From the most modern to the most ancient – Gloucester cathedral is a magnificent building, displaying beautiful architecture and a wealth of heritage. You may recognise the cloisters, which featured to great effect in the Harry Potter films, whilst the Chapter House, tomb of Edward II and some superb stained glass windows should not be missed. From Harry Potter to Beatrix, the great children’s author’s Tailor of Gloucester story stemmed from a visit to the city; you can visit the museum where displays breathe life into her story. Other museums include the Folk Museum, the City Museum and Art Gallery and the St. Nicholas House, home of the famous pantomime character, Dick Whittington.

Ensure to visit the Blackfriar’s Priory, one of the finest surviving abbeys in England, before taking a stroll along the waterfront. Enjoy a guided cruise to appreciate the importance of this area in past times, or head out to the docklands of the future for some serious shopping at the new Gloucester Quays outlet. Back in town, discover a less glitzy side to ancient Gloucester and join a Ghost Tour of the darker nooks and crannies of this most haunted of towns. Perhaps the stuff of nightmares is nothing more than a little too much cheese; the famous Double Gloucester variety is just one of many local delicacies available at the weekly market or regular Farmer’s markets which showcase some of the region’s best locally farmed produce. Indeed, if you visit in spring, you might just win yourself a block of the famous cheese – the town’s cheese-rolling festival has become an institution, as hundreds hurtle downhill in pursuit of ….large Double Gloucester cheeses.

Beyond Gloucester, the regency town of Cheltenham and its famous racecourse and spa is just a short drive, and the unspoilt Forest of Dean waits to be discovered. Gloucester also makes a good starting point for discovering the pretty neighbouring Cotswolds villages. The Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust at Slimbridge, about ten miles from Gloucester, is worth visiting at any time of year, especially in winter when the Arctic visitors arrive.

Why not see the above for yourself and take a look at our Gloucester holiday cottages?

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Bored In The Office? Solution: A Short Break

Wednesday, November 17th, 2010
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A few days away can be the perfect tonic when time is precious and stress levels are high. Think lazy days on the beach, walks in the countryside, alfresco pub lunches. Enjoy a day out, or chill out in your holiday cottage – what bliss to do absolutely nothing! We feature ‘short break’ cottages in all shapes and sizes across the UK and Ireland, whether you’re after a romantic retreat for two or a place to gather with friends.

All kinds of short breaks

Recharge those batteries and escape this weekend! We all enjoy a spot of spontaneity and the good news is many cottages accept last minute breaks, so you can whisk your friends or family away whenever the mood takes.

Beat those winter blues and plan a winter short break! From rambling farmhouses to cosy hideaways with crackling log fires, the winter months are especially popular for booking a ‘short break’ cottage – and reservations can be made at any time of year.

We also feature a good number of off season breaks, available at selected times of year and bookable within a month of travel.

We’ve hundreds of quality, hand-picked ‘short break’ cottages and value-for-money is guaranteed, leaving room in your pocket for lots of treats during your stay.

Tempted? Good…let’s get you booked!

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