AS the days are getting longer, it’s time to end our winter hibernation and get out and about again.
The spring 2014 edition of What’s On in South Derbyshire and The National Forest gives you 36 pages of ideas of how to enjoy the new season.
“There are details of so many different activities from March until the end of June 2014,” said Gail Archer, manager of Swadlincote Tourist Information Centre.
“No wonder millions of people visit the area. With our picturesque villages amid the rolling English countryside, it’s a marvellous place to live, work and visit.
“No only do we have the attractions of towns, villages and hamlets, we have historic houses and gardens, waterways and a marina and activities from archery to zumba.
“South Derbyshire is at the heart of England, the place to enjoy rural recreation.
“This month there are so many musical events to enjoy. On Wednesday, March 19, British pianist Ronan O’Hora is performing music by Mozart, Schumann, Brahms, Wagner, Liszt and Schubert at Repton School.
“If you want something a little more riotous, the fabulous Derbyshire Ranters Ceilidh Band is holding a barn dance at Calke Abbey, on Saturday, March 22, from 7.30pm.
“The Saturday Talk at Sharpe’s Pottery Museum on March 29, which will take place from 10am until noon, will be about medieval life and music.
“Master John and Mistress Eleanor are offering an illustrated costumed talk with reproduction relics of the Middle Ages, telling of the lives of people both rich and poor.”
April sees the countdown to Easter, with an early Easter Farmers’ Market at Rosliston Forestry Centre.
“We really do have something for everyone on Sunday, April 6 from 11am until 4pm,” said Debbie Chesterman, manager of Rosliston Forestry Centre.
“There’s the food and drink of The National Forest Farmers’ Market with fabulous tastings, alongside craft stalls filled with beautiful handmade products from local artists as well as a range of exciting activities.
“Visitors can try their hand at archery and laser combat and meet Rosliston Forestry Centre’s birds of prey. Also, for the children, there’s face painting, an adventure playground, a bouncy castle and rides. To celebrate Easter you can hunt for Peter Rabbit and win great Easter prizes.”
There are also hidden secrets just down the road from Rosliston, at Drakelow Nature Reserve, on Saturday April 12.
The nature reserve is managed by Derbyshire Wildlife Trust and is only open by permit. For only £1 per person you can see this unique wetland site with paths to wander around and bird hides to visit.
Said Kate Allies of South Derbyshire’s environmental education project: “At Rosliston Forestry Centre, on Tuesday, April 15 and Tuesday, April 22, we have the Wildlife Watch Easter Springwatch.
“We meet up at 2pm in the classroom where people can borrow some kit to help them explore the site looking for spring birds, beast and flowers. We can also help with identification. It costs just £2.50 per family group.
“On Saturday, April 26, we will be working with Rolls-Royce to put on a family Science Discovery day from 11am until 4pm. Admission is free.”
Football fans will have something to look forward to on Saturday, April 26.
“If you are looking for something completely different, why not join in the fun at the Gresley FC Community Day and Match on Saturday April 26 at the Moat Ground, Moat Street, Church Gresley?” said Gail Archer.
“It costs £7 for adults, with under 12s only £1 if accompanied by adults
“There will be mini games and football skills sessions on the Moat Ground pitch and a chance to have your picture taken with the club’s mascot Elvis Gresley.
“You can watch the live lunchtime Premier League game of Southampton v Everton in the clubhouse and then support the home team at the 3pm kick off for Gresley FC’s match against Brigg Town.
“And if you want to calm down after such soccer excitement ,on Sunday, April 27 the Bluebell Arboretum is opening its beautiful nine acre woodland garden to support the National Garden Scheme’s Open Garden event. With rare plants, specialist trees and shrubs in the nursery next to the garden, the pleasures of spring are there to be enjoyed. It costs £3 for adults and children are free.”
To find out how much South Derbyshire and The National Forest has to offer, contact Swadlincote Tourist Information Centre, at Sharpe’s Pottery Museum, in West Street, call 01283 222848 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can find the Swadlincote Tourist Information Centre on facebook and on Twitter @swadlincotetic.
The Spring What’s On Guide in South Derbyshire and The National Forest can be found by visiting the South Derbyshire District Council website at www.south-derbys.gov.uk