Category Archives: Day trips

A very berry weekend…

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This weekend we went ‘P.Y.O-ing’ and headed straight to Elsie’s favourite fruit – the strawberry patch!

We were expecting slim pickings as the farm’s website said bad weather had resulted in a slow crop, but there were loads everywhere!

Our basket full we headed off to get some gooseberries and blackcurrants…

 

After having such a nice time picking the fruit I then had a sudden panic moment when just about to pay – thinking we’d got a bit too carried away and totally had no idea how much it was going to cost!  But breathed a sigh of relief when we got all these (plus the ones in Elsie’s tummy… ok and mine) for £8, cheaper than the supermarket and much much more fun!

Now what to make with it all, mmmmmm decisions, decisions…

To find your nearest fruit farm check out this website!

Fun at the Fair

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We went along to Greenwich Fair today and were thoroughly entertained by Mr Punch and his wife Judy…

It got a bit tense at times, but on the whole the kids (and adults) loved it…

Then it was off to see some less traditional attractions, such as a ‘The Pig‘ and a vegetable nursery called ‘The Allotment

A fun and fairly random day!

Red House

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Yesterday we were in Bexleyheath, and went knocking at Red House, the home of pattern designer William Morris.  He sadly wasn’t in! But we made do with the friendly tour guide…

Morris commissioned and built the house in the 1850’s, but only lived there until 1865 when he left to set up his business, ‘Morris & Company,’ in central London.

The building, quite obviously, gets its name from the red brick, and the design was strongly influenced by French Chateaus and Kentish Oast houses…

Inside the house are many of the original features that were designed by both William Morris and his friend Philip Webb, including these cute stained glass windows…

  

The ceiling designs were particularly impressive, with very bold colours and pattern…

Restoration of the original interior decoration is still taking place but it is exciting to think what all the rooms are hiding behind their panels…

Throughout the house were many example of Morris’s designs which I shall share with you in a separate post – there are quite a few!  For now, here is one – ‘Apple’ which is the wallpaper in the hallway…

 If you are a William Morris fan I would definitely recommend a visit! 🙂

Portmeirion

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We spent the bank holiday weekend camping in Snowdonia National Park in Wales, beautiful but very wet!  We decided to visit Portmeirion, on the coast in Gwynedd, and, if you are going to do anything outside in the rain, this is surely one of the better things to do…

Used as the set for the 60’s television series ‘The Prisoner,’ Portmeirion was built by Clough Williams-Ellis to show how a beautiful site could be developed without spoiling it.  He started work in 1925 and spent 50 years building it.

 

In amongst the little shops there is so much detail hidden around the place…

I loved these roses on the gates to the garden…

The village is surrounded by woodland, which hides this beautiful Chinese Lake…

May Day

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We went on a little day trip to Rochester at the weekend.  I had faint memories of going there on a school trip when I was young and wanted to see if it was as nice as I remembered. It was. Maybe even better (in spite of the rain).  Unbeknown to us, we visited during their annual May Day celebrations ‘Rochester Sweeps Festival’ and the buildings were all decorated with bunting and balloons making everything look extra special, and Morris dancers filled the streets.

I loved all the history in the town and the fact that Charles Dickens once lived, and wrote three of his books here.  (You would never have guessed from all the shop names around the place, ‘Tiny Tims,’ ‘Sweet Expectations’..!)

            

London Art

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One of the things I love about London is there there is always something new to spot wherever we go, art and creations are always popping up and then disappearing.  For example the living wall at the National Gallery which used over 8000 plants to recreate Van Gogh’s ‘A Wheatfield, with Cypresses’.

Then if you cut through to Leicester Square you spot this giant line drawing of Piccadilly Circus which is just there to conceal building works.

Love this drawing in the Transport Museum kids play area:

And then there’s these brilliant depictions of East London life, that you will see at many of the train stations along the East London line.

London Transport Museum

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Elsie and I make very good use of our annual pass to the London Transport Museum! We have been so many times, I’m sure they must know our faces by now. I’d like to say this means I know everything there is to know about the history of London’s transport but to be honest we mainly go because it’s a break from the hustley bustley London streets and Elsie is free to run around without me constantly having mini heart attacks.  Saying that, I do love the old buses and trains and one day I plan to create some illustrations or designs inspired by what is there…