Whitwick & District U3A - Walking Holidays
Each year, usually September or October, all WAD walkers are offered the opportunity to participate in a 4 night walking holiday. These holidays are booked with HFHolidays Ltd and are taken at one of their country houses in the UK. HF offers a very good standard of accommodation and we enjoy full board in en-suite rooms. A choice of 3 walks of varying length and difficulty are offered each day with a range of between 7 and 12 miles. Some evening entertainment is offered by way of light hearted quizzes or games, a speaker on topics of local interest, demonstrations or music. Travel is shared and we usually have enough willing drivers.
The 2019 holiday has now been booked in the Lake District. From Monday 7th to Friday 11th October we will be staying in HF's historic country house dating from the late 18th century on the banks of picturesque Derwent Water in the Lake District. From the house there are views of the lake and fells, and the lawn slopes down to the lake jetty offering a splendid spot to admire the magnificent setting. From Derwent Bank we will be able to enjoy lakeside rambles, charming valleys, and some more challenging mountain ascents if we should choose to. We are within walking distance of Keswick with its Theatre by the Lake.
The cost of the holiday per person will be £435 . There are a few premium single rooms on offer at an extra cost of £40. No single supplements. We will share transport, and we will share costs for this at the WAD recommended rate for mileage charges.
The holiday is now booked for 14 of our members. However, if you wish to join us there is still the possibility of adding you on. Just let Ann know as soon as possible.
Bookings are now being taken for next year's holiday and there are still some rooms available, although singles are in limited supply. The holiday will be 4 nights from Monday 5th October 2020, and we will be staying at The Long Mynd run by HF holidays, Church Stretton in Shropshire. The price per person will be approx. £459 full board. Please contact Ann for more details.
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Below is a decription and some pictures from the 2018 holiday.
Pictures from 2015, 2016 and 2017 are in the gallery.
Walking Holiday 1st to 5th October 2018
Bourton on the Water, Cotswolds
This year 12 WAD members went on the walking holiday to Bourton on the Water. Three of our group had decided to 'do their own thing' and not take part in the organised walking programme, but I am sure their holiday included lots of walking and sightseeing too!
We stayed at Harrington House very close to the centre of Bourton and run by HF holidays. It is a lovely Tudor building with every bedroom being unique, and very pleasant public areas for us to enjoy pre-dinner drinks, dinner and our evening entertainment.
Some of our group visited Charlecote Park on the journey down to the Cotswolds, while others enjoyed Hidcote Gardens. We all met up for afternoon tea at Harrington House at 4pm. This was followed by an interesting orientation walk around Bourton on which we learned a lot we would not have otherwise found out. After an enjoyable 3 course dinner, we spent the remainder of the evening participating in a game of 'guess the mysterious object'.
Day one of walking, whichever length of walk you took part in, visited Chedworth Roman Villa and through the Coln Valley went on to the picturesque village of Bibury where we had some time to look around and mingle with the Chinese tourists before our coach took us back to Harrington House. After dinner, we were treated to a very enlightening talk on the local area by a visiting speaker.
On day two we walked through the Cotswolds through the villages with 'Dunts' in their names to Cirencester. Along the way there were many beautiful Saxon and Norman churches to take a look inside, and depending on which length of walk you had done, we had varying amounts of time to explore Cirencester. Wednesday evening saw us taking part in HFs national quiz. We split ourselves into two teams and participated along with two other teams. At the end of the quiz, 3 of the teams at Harrington House were tied! This included our two U3A teams, but a tie break sorted us out, with our first team taking the prize of an HF handy shopping bag each. We do not know where we came in the national rankings except we know it was not top!
On our last walking day, we followed parts of several national walking trails, the Gloucestershire, Macmillan or Diamond Way which took us from our starting point of either Hazelton or Hampnett back to Bourton along the Windrush Valley. It was a beautiful day for early October which could be enjoyed walking in just Tshirts! Then a quick shower and time to get ready for the 'Bourton Boat Race'. We were invited to construct a boat made out of materials scavenged on our walks, which we would race down the Windrush. At least 14 boats were constructed and we had great fun following them down the river in the village from one bridge to the next. One of our members came in second place with a very simple design.
To celebrate the last night of our holiday, we were served a 5 course meal made with truly local ingredients. Very full, and very weary (but we do not give up) we went on to play a game of skittles and once again a U3A team triumphed.
On Friday morning we said our goodbyes and headed back to Leicestershire talking about what a great holiday we had once again enjoyed, and to look forward to the next one!