Put A Little Spring In Your Step
We’re just about a quarter of the way into 2020, who can quite believe it.
That’s right, not only are we nearly three months down, we’re also into Spring at long last!
Now we aren’t the type to wish time away, nor to start the countdown to Christmas just yet, but we do enjoy a bit of warmer weather, especially in the beautiful British countryside found in South-East England. We want to celebrate Spring, and to do so we’ve compiled our favourite Spring activities local to each Closs & Hamblin store.
Let’s face it, if you live in or around Brighton, we know exactly where you’re heading as the weather warms up, and why would you want to go anywhere else? On this particular stretch of the East Sussex south coast you’ll find a 5-mile expanse of shingle beach, as well as one of the richest cultures in the country. Relax on the beach, take a swim (if you’re feeling brave…) or wander down the pier – whatever you’re looking for, Brighton seafront has it all!
If you’re in the market for something slightly different, why not try the i360? Cousin of the London Eye, the 530ft observation tower allows you to enjoy 360-degree views across Brighton, the South Downs and the Channel!
One of the most-visited cities in the UK, Canterbury in Kent is not only an English cathedral city, but also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Of course, if you’re looking for something to do this Spring, the Cathedral and its grounds are a beautiful place to start, with some of the most beautiful architecture. If you are visiting, keep an eye out for the Disney-esque Peace and Salvation stained-glass windows, designed and created in 1960 by Hungarian refugee Ervin Bossanyi to replace the Victorian glass destroyed by bombing in 1942.
If you’re looking for something slightly quieter, away from the hustle and bustle of the city centre, make the most of the nice weather with a wander through Westgate Gardens, along the river Stour.
With historic Goodwood just a short stint down the road, you’d be forgiven for thinking that Chichester is all about motor racing, but it’s much more than just that. A beautiful cathedral city in West Sussex, you can wander for hours, taking in the sights, but one of our favourite places in the local area is Fishbourne’s Roman Palace, the largest residential Roman building discovered in Britain. Only two miles west, if you are going, make sure to see the perfectly preserved dolphin mosaic in the north wing.
A few miles north of the city, you’ll find the Weald and Downland Living Museum on a 40 acre site with over 50 historic buildings dating from 950AD. Perfect for a family day out, you may even recognise certain buildings from BBC Two’s The Repair Shop!
Home to simply one of the most beautiful locations in the world, Eastbourne is another seaside resort on the East Sussex stretch of the south coast. With Beachy Head, the highest chalk sea cliff in Britain, standing at over 160 metres above the sea, visitors come for miles to see the absolutely stunning views. It’s not difficult to see why this is such a popular location, and this has translated to popular culture, with the location used in numerous projects including the likes of Harry Potter, Quadrophenia, Luther and even Black Mirror.
The Downland Estate is a sprawling 4,000 acre area of both farmland and downland at the very edge of the South Downs National Park. Set a day aside, get your walking boots on and take a picnic, it’s well worth it on a sunny day, although it can get blustery!
Over time, Guildford has become well known as a sleepy commuter town with a beautifully modest cobbled granite high street, but it is so much more than that, it truly has everything. Looking for family fun? The Spectrum Leisure Complex is where you need to be. A bit of history? There’s a medieval castle in the heart of the town! The castle gardens in particular are absolutely stunning in Spring, so if you’ve had a long morning shopping, walking up and down the hill, grab yourself some lunch and have a picnic.
If you’re looking for the ultimate beauty spot, Newlands Corner is a 250-acre nature reserve, just to the east of Guildford. With some of the very best views over the Surrey Hills, it’s a fantastic start-point for a country walk.
One of West Sussex’ most popular market towns, Horsham has been rapidly developing and growing for the last fifteen years, but one thing that has remained an absolute constant is the beautiful park. A testament to the town, the park is an a green haven with a tranquil sensory garden, a human nature garden, a lake, vividly colourful flowerbeds and wildlife galore! It also has tennis courts, an orienteering course, a skate park and a huge children’s playground, for those looking for a slightly more active day out!
Just outside of the town you will find a true gem in Huxley’s Birds of Prey Centre and Gardens. With some fantastic experiences available, and a garden filled with stunning tropical plants, it makes for a great family day out.
A highly fashionable resort in the 1700s, Royal Tunbridge Wells continues to attract visitors from across both Kent and East Sussex due to its diverse and rich blend of history and modernity. The Pantiles capture this blend perfectly, the elegantly colonnaded walkway and its stylish 18th/19th century buildings an incredibly well-loved photography spot. Now home to a variety of independent businesses and regular events (including some divine food festivals), the natural chalybeate spring is also still situated at the end of the way.
Converted in 1993 from a public toilet block, The Forum is an independent music venue with a capacity of 250 that has played host to a number of acts that have gone on to great things, including Adele, Coldplay and Oasis – definitely worth a visit!
County town of Hampshire, the city of Winchester has some fantastic things to do. From wandering around the cathedral to spotting King Arthur’s round table in the Great Hall of Winchester Castle, you’re in a real hub of vibrant medieval culture. Combine this with the amazing foodie scene in the town, and the fact that you’re also located directly at the Western point of the South Downs Way, you definitely won’t be stumped with what to do!
Just down the road, you’ll find the Winchester Space Centre, home to two floors hands-on exhibits, as well as the UK’s largest standalone planetarium. Intended to educate and inspire the next generation, this one is perfect for a half-term adventure.
Whatever you get up to this Spring, we just hope you have fun. If you’ve got any other suggestions for great activities, do let us know!
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