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Strongers
03-05-2010, 21:24
My misses has instructed me to find a nice place for us to spend a long weekend wth the kids. The perfect location would have some open space, maybe a wood or forest, some shops and obviously some decent pubs for me to visit. We like olde feel towns and I'd like a bit of peace and quiet.

We don't like to travel for too long in the car with the kids as they are both under 3 and get a bit moody so a place within 2 1/2 hours from North London would be ideal. I live under 10 minutes from junction one of the M1 so some distance can be covered.

I'm in the process of investigating myself, but it would be stupid of me not to ask for some ideas from the well travelled people that use this site.

Cheers in advance

Steve.

RogerB
04-05-2010, 09:14
Plenty of options but how about the Salisbury area. Salisbury is a very walkable and historic city with many well reviewed pubs, plenty of shops and interesting buildings. A stroll over the water meadows is a must (the view of the Cathedral is often described as the finest view in England). There are plenty of historic places worth visiting not far away (Avebury, Stonehenge, Old Sarum, Old Wardour Castle as well as other towns (Shaftesbury (Hovis advert!) and Devizes (Caen Hill Locks & Wadworth Brewery) + Poole or Bournemouth are within easy reach. You can even do a bit of tank spotting as you go over Salisbury plain! Iíve always thought Wiltshire gets overlooked as a holiday place as people tend to go straight through on the way to Dorset or the West Country. Itís also closer to the equator and less likely to snow in the summer.

aleandhearty
04-05-2010, 13:36
Hi Strongers.

Fortunately, my kids are in their early teens now, but I remember what it was like when they were that age!
With you living so close to J1, there's a certain logic in heading north, although with the roadworks lottery you'll never make Yorkshire in two and a half hours. Somewhere around Sherwood Forest Country Park, near Mansfield, might be worth considering. Nottingham would be close by and has a good shopping centre plus some historic pubs.

To the west of the M1, you might make the southern end of the Peak District, where there are some pretty little market towns and good scenery. You'd be handily placed for the pub mecca of Derby, Nottingham again and possibly even Sheffield at a pinch.

I hope this isn't too vague, but I didn't want to be too prescriptive.

Farway
04-05-2010, 15:16
I second RogerB on Salisbury, but he missed out the New Forest, with ponies, cows, open spaces or wooded walks all on hand which is just on the doorstep, with sea & beaches close nearby

oldboots
04-05-2010, 16:07
A couple of other places that might fit are Oxford or Cambridge, maybe even Norwich although that might be pushing things considering East Anglian roads. I'd agree with Hampshire/Wiltshire with kids and maybe Derby as well, although Nottingham can get a bit too lively at the weekend. Bath and Bristol could be reached in the time as could Gloucester or Cheltenham and the Cotswolds.

Oggwyn Trench
04-05-2010, 17:35
Oxford is pretty good , with lots of character and plenty of good pubs , a bit further afield maybe Malvern/Worcester , should just about make it , lots of lovely country and some decent pubs

hopwas
05-05-2010, 10:12
How about Stratford Upon Avon? Nearby Warwick Castle can be easily reached and Leamington Spa is wonderful place.

ROBCamra
05-05-2010, 10:21
How about Stratford Upon Avon? Nearby Warwick Castle can be easily reached and Leamington Spa is wonderful place.

I'm not a great fan of Stratford pubwise. Take away The Old Thatch Tavern and The Windmill and you're struggling.

It is a nice enough place though in the evenings once the coachloads of Japanese etc have gone.

Strongers
05-05-2010, 19:17
Cheers for the ideas guys, probably gonna head North due to road works on the M25 and I like the sound of the Sherwood Forest!

Delboy20
06-05-2010, 19:24
Have you considered Cradley Heath ?? I know Hoppy was impressed and you have Dudley, West Bromwich and Brierley Hill in easy reach.
Not sure if it could provide peace and quiet though !!! I could lend you an eye-patch if you fancy it !!

Cheers

Del.

Strongers
06-05-2010, 19:39
Eye patch lol!

The misses has spotted Ely and thinks it may be worth a look... Not had a chance yet though.

Andy Ven
06-05-2010, 20:13
Peak District in Derbyshire? - Very scenic. Matlock Bath, Ashbourne, Buxton, Edale, Tissington, Bakewell, Hathersage

The Hollybush Inn in Makeney (Belper) and the Dead Poets Inn in Holbrook are especially good

hopwas
10-05-2010, 20:39
Have you considered Cradley Heath ?? I know Hoppy was impressed and you have Dudley, West Bromwich and Brierley Hill in easy reach.
Not sure if it could provide peace and quiet though !!! I could lend you an eye-patch if you fancy it !!

Cheers

Del.

:D:D:D

I still can't get rid the image of one eyed man out of my mind.. :sick:

I won't be returning there again unless Cradley got another JDW (God help me)