#30DaysWild Day 30 – Tattershall bats

TWT 30 Days Wild_countdown_30We were going to go camping this weekend but the adverse weather forecast earlier in the week made us decide it was not the right time for Faith’s first foray into canvas living.

It has, of course, mainly been a lovely day after all and the weekend looks set to be the same but it did mean we had an extra “Daddy Day” today anyway and we decided to head to Tattershall Castle for the afternoon instead.

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The 15th century red brick castle is a National Trust property in the village near Sleaford in Lincolnshire and – as well as lots of steps! – it has lovely grounds whose moats add to the diversity of wildlife that makes its home there.

And there’s also a great sandpit behind the tower where, not only can you make your own more temporary battlement bedecked buildings, but you can also have lots of fun burying your brother.

 

The minis were also keen to explore Holy Trinity Collegiate Church on the way back to the car park and we were rewarded with discovering how proud its parishioners are that their place of worship also provides a home to 900+ bats.

 

The “largest bat colony in any inhabited building in the country” has even inspired a children’s book, Tatty Bat – “a beautiful tale of adventure, friendship and Christianity”.

Perhaps we will order a copy ready to read during #30DaysWild 2018!

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D is for dragon egg

DragonEggHuntWe’ve hunted for eggs, we’ve hunted for rabbits and this weekend we hunted for… dragons’ eggs!

Heritage Lincolnshire hosted the event at Bolingbroke Castle yesterday and our own knight and princess were keen to explore the ruins to find the hidden eggs and their attached letter clues.

We enjoyed the event last year during the Easter period but this year the search was moved to be a highlight in the 650th birthday celebrations of King Henry IV, who was born at the castle.

Fortunately we found all the letter clues and were able to claim some sweet treats for the minis on completion of the anagram riddle.

Visitors to the ruins were also able to walk into the picturesque village where the Friends of Bolingbroke Castle had arranged refreshments, a craft fair, face painting, pony grooming, games such as hook a duck and small animal petting too.

Rather handily it’s letter d week at Luke’s nursery next week so d is, of course, for dragon egg!

For more information on the castle built in the early 13th century by Randulph de Blundeville, Earl of Chester and Lincoln, click here.

Lincolnshire Day – October 1st, 2016

lincolnshireflagLincolnshire – the county of big skies, the eponymous sausage, home of the Red Arrows and a varied landscape that encompasses city, town, village and hamlet, coast and countryside and an Area of Outstanding Beauty – it’s no wonder it has its own annual celebratory day.

Lincolnshire Day (#LincolnshireDay) is celebrated every year on October 1st, the anniversary of the Lincolnshire Rising, a revolt by Catholics against the establishment of the Church of England by Henry VIII in 1536.

And tonight it was the subject of the weekly Twitter hashtag hour #LincsHour and there was no shortage of events planned for the day available for TheMiniMalpi to retweet.

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Several tweeters mentioned that Lincoln Cathedral will be marking the occasion by offering free entry to visitors, @LincsHour herself pointed us in the direction of Belton House’s Autumn Fair and Lincolnshire County Council’s webpage Celebrate culture on Lincolnshire Day! was also linked to, highlighting events at Lincoln Castle and its Heritage Skills Centre, Gainsborough Old Hall, Ellis Mill and the Museum of Lincolnshire Life.

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The Lincolnshire Echo’s list of 16 things to do this Lincolnshire Day includes a walk through the Wolds, a book signing at Lindum Books in Bailgate, Lincoln, a festival of food and music at Swallowbeck Methodist Church and the launch of a new display at Cranwell Aviation Heritage Centre sharing RAF Cranwell’s history as a training school.

Healing Manor Hotel near Grimsby is holding an evening of Lincolnshire dishes in its Portman Restaurant and in Grantham celebrations will be equally delicious with the Teaspoon Tea Company offering free samples of its “Grantham tea” and the town’s market hosting a Sausage Saturday event.

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Visit Lincoln manager Emma Tatlow tweeted a link to Molly’s Guide’s Celebrate your inner Yellowbelly list which features a special Lincolnshire Day Artists’ Market, in Castle Square,  Lincoln, a Select Lincolnshire Food Festival in St Marks Shopping Centre, Lincoln and a Wolds Art Festival in Market Rasen.

And Visit Lincoln’s own website page Lincolnshire Day 2016 also includes the Lincoln Book Festival’s Local History Afternoon, the Lincoln Ghost Bus Tour, Age UK’s Lincolnshire Lunch celebration of both Older People’s Day and Lincolnshire Day in one go at their Park Street branch in Lincoln, New Theatre Royal Lincoln’s Lincolnshire Day ticket offer and (on Sunday 2nd) the first Lincoln Half Marathon.

Will you be wearing yellow on Saturday?

Queen of the reading castle

Have you been to Lincoln Central Library recently?

It’s not our local branch so we only pop in every now and then when we’re in the right area of the city at the right time.

But we were definitely rewarded in our latest visit when we wandered around the corner to the children’s area and discovered a castle!

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Wander around the castle itself and you’ll still be looking for an adult-sized entrance as it’s designed specifically for younger readers.

(Older readers just need to be able to crouch down otherwise, as one member of the library staff who told us it was only recently installed said, “It’s really good but it can be difficult to get them back out when it’s time to go!”)

If you do make it inside you can find shelves of books, DVDs and… dressing up clothes!

And, if it does take a while for your little sister to re-emerge from the wooden fortress, there are plenty of comfy cushions and colouring activities to use whilst you wait.

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Happy reading!

Lincoln Central Library is in Free School Lane, Lincon, LN2 1EZ.

Day 26 #30DaysWild: Poppies

TWT 30 Days Wild_countdown_26We actually achieved one of my #30DaysWild list yesterday!

Lincoln Castle is currently privileged to be host to Poppies:Wave by artist Paul Cummins and designer Tom Piper.  The sweeping arch of red poppy heads, presented by 14-18 NOW, marks the centenary of the First World War.

The sculpture Wave, along with Weeping Window, was initially conceived as the key dramatic sculptural elements in the installation Blood Swept lands and Seas of Red at the Tower of London in the autumn of 2014.

Once the conflict of WW1 was over, often only poppies would grow on the battlefields.  The blood red flower came to symbolise the sacrifice of all those who died and the rebirth of the land.  As we often do, we turn to the natural world for remembrance and healing.

The cascade, a whole yet made up of identifiable individual stems, is very powerful and further enhanced by the few real poppies finding their own home on a wall overlooking the sculpture.

Entry into the castle and to see the Wave is free but we were lucky to have won a family ticket in a Christmas raffle and were able to enjoy even more areas of the visitor attraction.  Unfortunately the Magna Carta and the Charter of the Forest were away from their vault due to humidity but we certainly enjoyed the Medieval wall walk.

The views were spectacular and Luke was especially proud of himself for managing all the steps – “I did it!” he told me, and his dad, and the castle guide and a fellow visitor and…

Sadly he didn’t quite manage one of the steps in the main castle area later on – many thanks to the mum who came to my aid with some very useful wipes!

An ice cream later plus the chance to have a go at stone carving and he was all smiles again.

Hoping that we would be able to visit the installation (which runs until September 4th) has also made me look out for poppies during our journeys in the last few weeks and I certainly haven’t been disappointed.

Lest we forget.

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