Photo credit Sophie Pearce
Whether you are a food-fanatic, a history-lover, a gin-enthusiasts or a circus-seeker, there is something for everyone in Northumberland this May half term. Enjoy local dishes and tipples at The Sill Food Fair, step into a time capsule at Alnwick Castle, uncover ancient secrets and Latin word origins at Vindolanda and The Roman Army Museum, and more…. just read on for inspiration on how to have a blooming lovely May half term in Northumberland.
For the foodies, gin-drinkers and cocktail connoisseurs, The Sill are hosting a weekend-long, gourmet gala, showcasing fresh, regional produce. Beer, bread, chocolate, barbecued meat, whisky and rum are just a few of the tongue-tantalisers and tipples that will be on offer. There will also be events throughout the weekend, such as cocktail-making, a Hepple Gin event where you can enjoy a gin-inspired three course meal, and a Steel Bonnets Whisky event. The fair will take place on 1st – 2nd June from 10am - 4pm each day.
Step back in time when you enter Alnwick Castle between 25th-26th May and become a medieval peasant at their annual jousting tournament. Listen to the uplifting, traditional music gently drifting in the background as you watch medieval crafts being made in the bustling encampment, observe exciting, live-action longbow demonstrations and witness an exquisite dressage display. Of course, there will be a jousting tournament where valiant knights clash their lances to defend their honour and battle towards victory.
A number of events take place in Ford and Etal throughout school holidays, including their Bank Holiday Bubble Train. A family favourite, you can all blow bubbles while you take the picturesque train journey between Heatherslaw and Etal. The drifting bubbles seem to add a new dimension to the experience that the kids find thoroughly entertaining! Hop off at Etal to visit Etal Village’s Bank Holiday Market, selling delicious food and intricate crafts that make excellent souvenirs or gifts. While you’re in the area, don’t miss the other charming sights that Ford and Etal has to offer, such as Etal Castle and Lavendar Tearooms.
Whitehouse Farm Centre have just the ticket for anyone struggling to juggle their free time over the school holidays. Keeping the kids entertained is a skill in itself, so they are hosting a circus skills workshop from 25th – 31st May, teaching juggling, plate-spinning and more! Then, on 1st and 2nd June, The National Festival Circus, a professional circus company, who were recent guests on The Alan Titchmarsh Show, are pitching their tent next to Whitehouse Farm Centre to put on a show of dazzling dancers, clumsy clowns and awe-inspiring acrobats. Tickets to the show will also grant you 20% off entry to Whitehouse Farm Centre, where you can pet and feed some of their adorable animals, like alpacas, llamas, pigs, horses.
An educational day out for the history buffs - Minimus the Mouse is coming to Vindolanda and The Roman Army Museum to teach you how to squeak Latin. Meet illustrator Helen Forte and author Barbara Bell at Vindolanda, who will give family drawing and Latin lessons, and enjoy a Minimus Tour for a free 30 minute guided tour of this incredible archaeological site. Then, head over to The Roman Army Museum and uncover Latin word origins with teacher Catherine Jarvis and listen to Minimus tales in the storytelling corner.
For more events and goings-on next week, just visit our events guide, enter your dates and get searching.