Here on Anglotopia, we have been following the progress of A Church in Wales as it becomes a family home. The story (for us) started in spring 2019, but for the family who is making this their home, the story began back in late 2017 when they started looking for a plot of land to build their dream home. They have a large family (eight children, although the older ones have … [Read more...] about What’s Been Happening at A Church in Wales – Summer 2020 Update
The A Church in Wales column hasn't had an update for some time. But it's not because nothing has happened. The family who bought the church have been busy every day but it's still not ready to move in yet. This gives the rest of us an insight into how long planning permission can take on a Grade II listed building (a building with architectural merit that must be … [Read more...] about Spring 2020 Update: A Church in Wales Has Planning Permission
In the important words of Bruno Mars in Uptown Funk, "Stop, wait a minute". I imagine you're thinking, in the current world crisis, surely there are no events happening across Britain to share this month. While you would be right that cultural institutions are closed, sporting events are cancelled or postponed and public gatherings are not possible, historical anniversaries … [Read more...] about What’s On Around Britain in April 2020: No Actual Events But Plenty to Celebrate With Historical Anniversaries
Hello, springtime! In the UK it's Mother's Day on Sunday 22 March 2020. The date changes each year because Mothering Sunday is the fourth Sunday of Lent and exactly three weeks before Easter. And the arrival of spring means the flowers are coming out, especially the daffodils – the national flower of Wales. St David's Day Daffodils are traditionally worn in Wales on 1 March … [Read more...] about What’s On Around Britain in March 2020 – The Boat Race, Daffodils, Florence Nightingale, Scotland, Wales, England Events and Much More!
February is often considered a month of love with Valentine's Day on 14 February. And as 2020 is a leap year we have 29 February when, traditionally, women can propose to men (yes, I know this is an antiquated belief). But it's not all about being loved up this month as there is a one-week school holiday in the latter weeks of February in England, Scotland and Wales. And I've … [Read more...] about What’s On Around Britain in February 2020: Jane Austen, Wife Carrying, Six Nations, London Fashion Week, Jorvik Viking Festival, Eden Project, and More!
Happy new year! Welcome to 2020! Let's have a look what's happening across Britain this month and see what weirdness I've managed to find this time. Twelfth Night I've been to the London Twelfth Night celebration so can recommend the event but there is also a Twelfth Night celebration in Guildford, Surrey, each year. Counting twelve nights on from Christmas Day, the twelfth … [Read more...] about What’s On Around Britain in January 2020 – Twelfth Night, Chinese New Year, Burns Night, Blenheim Palace, Ballet, Wales, History, and More!
When it was suggested I should write a feature about somewhere in The Midlands, I could have kept it simple and gone to Birmingham. But I opted for the less obvious choice of Coventry (and not only so I could say I was ‘sent to Coventry’!) If you’ve heard anything about the city, it’s most likely the damage caused during the Blitz in 1940. I was told ‘You won’t find any old … [Read more...] about EXPLORING COVENTRY: Your Complete Guide to This Jewel of the Midlands
And so we reach the height of the festive season. As we don't have Thanksgiving, Christmas is our major winter celebration and the lights go on across Britain often earlier than this month. Families come together for a big roast turkey dinner on Christmas Day and, generally, stay together for the following day as Boxing Day (26 December) is another public holiday. Christmas Eve … [Read more...] about What’s On Around Britain in December 2019 – Christmas in Britain, Wales, Blenheim Palace, Stonehenge Winter Solstice, Lincoln, Puddings and More!,
It's definitely getting cooler across Britain in November but it's never so cold we can't get out and about. The dark evenings are appreciated with pyrotechnics and light displays this month and there is a major celebration connecting England and America. River of Light River of Light 2019 is Liverpool's nine-day festival of light, colour and spectacle. It is bringing … [Read more...] about What’s On Around Britain in November 2019 – Liverpool, Lumiere Durham, Bonfire Night, Mayflower 400, St Andrew’s Day, Winter Wonderland and Much More!
Welcome to autumn in Britain. It's definitely cooler at this time of year and usually wetter too. The school children get a week-long holiday to break-up the September to Christmas term. Dates will vary, but it's usually mid to late October. RHS Gardens To start the month, the RHS offers a free entry day to enjoy the autumn colour at its gardens on 1 October. At RHS Garden … [Read more...] about What’s On Around Britain in October 2019 – Royal Horticulture Society, Harvest Time, Hastings, Railway in Wartime, Manchester, Literary Festivals and More!
As we reach the end of summer, it seems like a good time to give you an update on the church-into-home project we are following in west Wales. You can see the introduction and background to the church in the first blog post, and there was an April 2019 update too. I feel so fortunate to be friends with the family who have taken on this project and to be able to visit them to … [Read more...] about A Church in Wales – Summer 2019 Update – Caring for the Graveyard, Pigeon Poo, Bats, Pew Removal and More Plans Revealed!
September brings us to late summer yet the weather is usually mild across Britain. The Autumn (Fall) Equinox is on 23 September 2019 so later in the month the days will start getting shorter and the nights get longer. As ever, I've brought together a collection of the quirky and entertaining events happening around Britain this month. Annual Horn Dance The Abbots Bromley … [Read more...] about What’s On Around Britain in September 2019 – Horn Dance, Puddings, Gurning, Heritage Open Days, and So Much More!
Editor’s Note: This article originally appeared in Issue #10 of the Anglotopia Print Magazine in 2018. Support great long-form writing about British History, Culture, and travel by subscribing to the Anglotopia Magazine. Every subscription helps keep Anglotopia running and provides us to the opportunity to produce articles like this. You can subscribe here. INTRODUCTION This … [Read more...] about EXPLORING LEEDS: Laura Porter’s Complete Travel Guide to This Yorkshire Hotspot
Longer daylight hours and a bit of sunshine means Britain has a lot of annual celebrations and events this month! Yorkshire Day Start the month by eating Yorkshire pudding to honour England’s largest county as it's Yorkshire Day. 1 August was chosen because it is also the anniversary of the 1759 Battle of Minden when soldiers picked white roses (the symbol of Yorkshire) as a … [Read more...] about What’s On Around Britain in August 2019 – Yorkshire Day, Gravy, Robin Hood, Edinburgh Fringe, Air Shows, and More!
As we reach the 'real summer' in Britain, the schools close and everyone spends more time outside. In Scotland, the school summer holidays from the start of July and in England and Wales, it's from about the last week of the month. Here's our round-up of all the wonderful things you can do in July when you travel to Britain. Alice's Day In case you don't know the connection … [Read more...] about What’s On Around Britain in July 2019 – Alice in Wonderland, Henley Regatta, Leeds Castle, Wimbledon, Festivals, Culture, and More!
As we enter summer the temperature increases across Britain so we've got lots of reasons to be outside this month. (I'm not saying it's hot here but you will find brave locals wearing t-shirts from Lands End to John O'Groats.) This is a bumper round-up of the traditional and quirky events happening across this great land so grab a cuppa and enjoy reading. St Albans Join … [Read more...] about What’s On Around Britain in June 2019: St Albans, Dickens Festival, Yorkshire, Manchester Day, Bletchley Park and Much More!
I was brought up near to Colchester so I did visit the Castle when I was a child. I remember it as a cold shell of a Norman castle which seemed much more fun from the outside that it was when you went inside. Thankfully it's a true visitor attraction now explaining the incredible history of this Essex town. I had a great excuse to stop in Colchester recently as I spent a few … [Read more...] about Laura’s Britain: Exploring History at Colchester Castle in Essex
I've been back to Wales so can bring you part two in our ongoing series about a deconsecrated Grade II listed church in Wales being converted to a family home. If you missed the first part of the series, you can get the background about the property here. I had the pleasure of opening up on a sunny day. Just listen to that bird song! Since the first blog post, the family … [Read more...] about A Church in Wales: Before The Church Can Become a Family Home… An Update from Wales
Bletchley Park is the home of British codebreaking and a birthplace of modern information technology. It played a major role in World War Two, producing secret intelligence which had a direct and profound influence on the outcome of the conflict. Due to its exceptional historical importance, this nineteenth-century mansion and estate in Buckinghamshire is open to visitors … [Read more...] about Bletchley Park: New Exhibition Report – D-Day: Interception, Intelligence, Invasion
Editor's Note: This is the first article in a new ongoing semi-regular series about the conversion of a deconsecrated church in Wales into a family home. This is something a bit new for us, but since shows like Grand Designs and Restoration Home are our favorites, we thought it would be cool to bring something similar to Anglotopia. If you like this article, please consider … [Read more...] about A Church in Wales: You’re Buying a Church? And You’re Going to Live In It? Tell Me More!
There are two public holidays (bank holidays) this month on Monday 6 May and Monday 27 May 2019. Mostly, people will just enjoy that free time with their family and friends and there will be some traditional entertainment, such as maypole dancing on May Day. People used to cut down young trees and dance around them in the centre of villages to mark the arrival of summer. It … [Read more...] about What’s On Around Britain in May 2019: Bank Holidays, Morris Dancing, Highland Games, Hay Festival, Cheese Rolling, Blenheim, Liverpool and more!
I hope you enjoyed the March 2019 recommendations as I've got plenty more ideas for April. There's so much to see and do, we hope you can incorporate some of these into your upcoming trips (or plan for next year)! This month moves us properly into spring so nature is bringing us more colourful flowers and those well known 'April showers' will keep them well watered. Easter … [Read more...] about What’s On Around Britain in April 2019 – Easter Celebrations, St George’s Day, Queen’s Birthday, Flower and Garden Shows and More!
Editor's Note: This is the start of a new regular column on Anglotopia. We want to highlight the most interesting events happening in Britain throughout the year so people planning trips can have the information on hand. These will not be exhaustive lists of every event in Britain - that would not be possible - it's a survey or what we deem to be the most interesting. Not only … [Read more...] about New Column Alert: What’s On Around Britain in March 2019 – St Davids Day, Cornwall, Shrove Tuesday, Lincolnshire, and More
The Bodleian Library in Oxford – the library of the prestigious University of Oxford – is one of the oldest libraries in Europe. In Britain, it is second in size only to the British Library in London. The Bodleian first opened to scholars in 1602. Its incomparable collections of books, papers and manuscripts are housed in buildings in the city center, and you can book a … [Read more...] about Laura’s Britain: Exploring the Bodleian Libraries in Oxford – An Inside Tour – Tons of Pictures Inside!
Oxford University's Bodleian Library recently launched a once-in-a-lifetime exhibition dedicated to J.R.R. Tolkien and his connection to Oxford. Many authors have strong connections to Oxford: Lewis Carroll who wrote Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, C.S. Lewis who wrote The Chronicles of Narnia and, of course, J.R.R. Tolkien who brought us The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. … [Read more...] about Tolkien: Maker of Middle-earth – Exploring the New Exhibition at Oxford University’s Bodleian Libraries