We’re not 100% sure if Thou Must BBQ on Bank Holiday is written in a holy book or just inscribed in British common law, but if there is good weather forecast for the Easter break it's definitely on the cards.
Smoked beef and sunshine aside, we've put together some suggestions to make sure you don't waste the four-day weekend. Here are several things you should be doing in Herefordshire over the Easter 2017 bank holiday.
Apologies in advance to the good folk keeping our shops, hospitals and restaurants running.
Find the eggs. All of them.
Much like the power of a properly constructed Easter bonnet, Easter egg hunts will NEVER stop being a good idea. This weekend, you’re spoilt for choice.
There are National Trust’s Cadbury Egg Hunts at Berrington Hall, and Croft Castle, both near Leominster; The Weir Gardens in Swainshill; and the Brockhampton Estate, near Bromyard (some of which are dog friendly). There’s a treasure hunt at Eastnor Castle, near Ledbury.
See our what's on section for event times and admission.
If you’re in Hereford, try the Pokemon Go-inspired Gnomee’s Egg Hunt at the Old Market. To take part just download the myMall AR app (avail on Apple and Android) and level up as you find golden eggs ‘hidden’ around the participating shops.
Gnomee’s Egg Hunt is at Old Market, Hereford, over the Easter weekend.
Have a drink.
Don’t do it home alone, head to the inaugural Beer-Fest at (relatively new) Hereford bar Gordon Bennetts.
Throughout the weekend (Friday 14 to Sunday 16) there’ll be an abundance of real ale from the likes of Purity, Tiny Rebel, Hobsons and Wye Valley, soundtracked by bands including funk/soulsters Take It To The Bridge, Boondogz, Phoenix, Tyler Massey, and J Alexanders and Blues Devils.
Alternatively, seek out the second annual Kington and Radnor Beer Festival on the Herefordshire-Powys border (Friday and Saturday). A two-day pub crawl of sorts, the festival will take-over several venues including the Swan on the Square in Kington, The Fforest Inn, just over the Powys border, and the Radnorshire Brewery Bar in nearby New Radnor.
A good excuse to venture out west. Why not combine it with a walk along Offa’s Dyke. Bonus: every pub is on a bus route (the 461 daytime service between Hereford, Kington and Radnorshire).
Eat like you mean it.
Just over the Herefordshire border you’ll (literally) find enough good food lying about to make yourself a memorable meal.
Running out of Burford House at Tenbury Wells (9 miles from Leominster, 11 miles from Bromyard), the Tenbury Spring Foraging Course (Friday, and running throughout April) is slow amble along the river Teme, through woods and fields, picking wild food as you go. The afternoon includes a lunch made from your freshly foraged finds.
If you prefer dinner handed to you on a plate, check out Stoked’s Steak Night (Saturday) in Longtown. Hosted by Jake and Amie from Jake's Cured Meats, this feast night at their Lower House Farm HQ should help curb Herefordshire's collective hunger until the date of their summer Stoked Feast is announced.
The three course meal is £30 per person and includes 50 day dry aged rare breed grass fed beef, raised on the Golden Valley farm.
Stay out late.
No-work Monday means late-night Sunday.
At The Venue in Hereford, there's a Boogie Night’s Disco running 11pm to 4am. DJ Moononastick and Bobby Cazino will be on the wheels of steel percussion, and four screen visuals will come from the very capable Buzz.
At the newly reopened Spread Eagle in Hereford, it’ll be funk, soul and disco from 9pm to 2am as Temple Records' Guy Davies, Edd Tipton, and Anthony 'Murf' Murphy play tunes that’ll put a little soul into your long weekend. Entry is free.
Keep music live.
For starters, on Friday there’s an open mic night at Reet Petite jazz café in Leominster; on Saturday multi-instrumentalists known as Trenchfoot play the Globe at Hay, Hay-on-Wye; on Sunday local punk band Teddy’s Leg start their latest tour with a show at The Booth Hall in Hereford; and on Monday roots-folk group The Meddlars played a laid-back show upstairs in the De Koffie Pot on the banks of the river Wye in Hereford.
Above: Teddy's Leg. Credit: Holly Monroe Photography.
Show some love for Hereford FC.
An hour from home turf, Hereford FC play Evesham United away on Bank Holiday Monday. It’s an hour’s drive or just over on the train (3pm kick off). There will be no matchday tickets on sale, so buy beforehand.
If you want to show support closer to home, The Bulls face Barnstaple Town at Edgar Street on Saturday (3pm kick off).
More info and tickets: herefordfc.co.uk/fixtures
Buy Nice Things.
More fool you if you’ve left the weekly shop until the bank holiday break. We, meanwhile, will be keeping the capitalist dream alive by spending our hard earned cash at Kington Fleamarket.
Not remotely put off by the etymology (flea market comes from the French marché aux puces, a name originally given to a market in Paris which specialised in shabby second-hand goods. The kind that almost always carried fleas), the monthly market will be open 10am to 4pm on Easter Sunday.
Ideal for bargains, unusual gifts and one-off vintage items.
Cross the Border For…
We’re living in global times, guys. It’s ok to venture over the border. Especially for events like these:
Will Datson’s Chair Play @ Croome Court, Worcestershire
Unlike most historic houses, Croome has shifted away from traditional ways of exhibiting historic pieces. To that end it recently installed artist Will Datson’s eye-cathing entanglement of chairs. Over 2.5 metres high, the sculpture piece is an innovative way of presenting these beautifully crafted items without erecting barriers. Part of the National Trust’s Trust New Art programme.
More info: nationaltrust.org.uk/croome
Chair Play by Will Datson is on show at Croome Court. Credit: Jack Nelson.
International Centre for Birds of Prey in Newent, Gloucestershire
Fluffy chicks are all well and good but at the International Centre for Birds of Prey in Newent, nine miles south of Ledbury, baby birds come with bigger talons. Over the Easter weekend, there’ll be egg hunts, Guess the Weight competitions, and nest-building workshops at the animal centre.
Postcode: GL18 1JJ
More info: icbp.org
The Easter Joust @ Sudley Castle, Winchcombe
An 1 hour 20 min drive from Hereford city is Sudeley Castle (eight miles out of Cheltenham) and this weekend, it’s all about the joust. A live performance/opportunity to pretend you’re in Game of Thrones, there’ll be knights, squires and an appearance from Henry VIII (just pretend he’s Robert Baratheon).
Postcode: GL54 5JD
More info: sudeleycastle.co.uk
Holi Rave Festival @ Digbeth, Birmingham
There’s a holi rave at No21 Digbeth on Saturday. There are no age limits – 2pm to 6pm is designed for families and it rolls on until 11pm. The event is billed as “a festival with Colour Explosions, street food & live acts”. Tickets are £15.
Postcode: B5 5TR
More info: holirave.com
Tile and banner image: via Flickr