What would your children like to do this Easter? Make plans with these ideas from English Heritage.
English Heritage has unveiled a host of glorious treats for families to enjoy this Easter.
Children can hunt for dragon eggs at more than 20 sites, explore the forts of Hadrian’s Wall, stroll through blooming spring gardens and enjoy popular falconry events.
And Whitby Abbey – the place where the date of Easter was decided – reopens to the public in April, following a £1.6 million update.
Easter Adventure Quest
Where: Over 20 sites around the country, including Audley End House and Gardens, Essex; Beeston Castle and Woodland Park, Cheshire; Walmer Castle and Gardens, Kent; and Whitby Abbey, North Yorkshire. *Full list at the bottom of the article.
What: An Easter egg hunt with a difference – search for hidden dragon eggs at stunning historic sites around the country.
Crack the clues as you make your way along the trails, with a certificate, sticker and chocolate treat in store for victorious questers.
When: Saturday, April, 6 to Monday, April 22 (dates vary by property) .
Cost: £1 per child (in addition to standard admission prices).
Where: Wrest Park, Bedfordshire.
What: Marvel at centuries-old art in the stunning wallpaper rooms of Wrest Park. Step into the French chateau-inspired house to take part in one of the exclusive tours. See the intricate, 18th-century hand-painted wallpaper of the Chinese Room, and the vibrant scenes of a mythical city in the French Room. Wrest Park’s knowledgeable volunteer guides will be on hand to share their fascinating histories.
When: Sunday April, 7.
Cost: £14.30 adult, £13.20 concessions, £9.80 child (advance booking recommended).
Spring Quest and Craft
Where: Kenwood, London.
What: Let the neoclassical villa Kenwood inspire your creativity as you take part in seasonal workshops exploring the house and gardens. Families can take part in different arts and crafts activities ranging from making animal masks through to creating your own seasonal treat boxes.
When: Tuesday, April 16 to Wednesday, April 17.
Cost: £2 per child.
Where: Rievaulx Abbey, North Yorkshire.
What: Be awed by the skills of expert falconers as you wander the grounds of this medieval abbey. Discover the tales of priests, bishops and monks who broke their vows to go hawking and hear how the abbey’s coffers were boosted by hunting with birds of prey. Stop by the medieval-style hawk house to see some of them up close and quiz the falconers. See the birds in action at displays throughout the weekend which will show how hawks and falcons hunt in the air and on the ground.
When: Friday, April 19 to Monday, April 22.
Cost: £9.40 adult, £8.50 concessions, £5.60 child and £24.40 family.
St George’s Festival
Where: Wrest Park, Bedfordshire
What: At the country’s biggest St George’s Day celebration, you will experience an energetic retelling of the story of England. Bring all the family to Wrest Park for a weekend of shows, battle re-enactments, games and performances. See a medieval joust, cheeky jester, Roman display of infantry featuring two cavalry riders and take part in 2019 Second World War activities. There promises to be plenty to keep children entertained including have-a-go circus skills, Victorian games, junior jousting, a First World War obstacle course and interactive music workshops.
The highlight of the weekend is England’s most legendary battle – watch as the gallant St George takes on his fiery nemesis in the ultimate showdown. Wander Elizabethan and English Civil War encampments to see, smell and hear what life was like for people hundreds of years ago as Wrest Park celebrates England’s patron saint in one glorious weekend.
When: Saturday, April 27 to Sunday, April 28.
Cost: £18.50 adult, £16.70 concessions, £11.10 child, £48.10 family.
Events at Stonehenge over Easter
Moving and Raising a Stone
What: Join the Stonehenge team to help move and raise a four-tonne stone, similar to those used to build the stone circle. Using a hand-built sledge, and under expert supervision, visitors can experience for themselves just what it might have felt like to be involved in building Stonehenge. The experiment will run twice a day.
When: Friday, April 12 to Tuesday, April 16.
Flint Knapping and Bronze Casting
What: Craftsman James Dilley demonstrates the prehistoric skill of flint knapping – the core technology that may have helped our ancient ancestors to survive. James will also demonstrate bronze casting – a technique which shows what a huge step forward people took 3,000 years ago when they started working with bronze to create tools and valuable artefacts signifying wealth and status. Visitors will have the opportunity to craft their own ‘sun disk’ to take home.
When: Monday, April 22 to Thursday, April 25.
Fire and Life!
What: Neolithic bush craft expert Guy Hagg shares his Neolithic life-skills, from fire lighting and tool and weapon making using bone, antler and stone, to game preparation and early cooking methods. Families can have a go at preparing hazelnuts and acorns for food.
When: Friday, April 26 to Sunday, April 28.
Full list of Easter Adventure Quest locations
- 1066 Battle of Hastings, Abbey and Battlefield, East Sussex
- Audley End House and Gardens, Essex
- Framlingham Castle, Suffolk
- Osborne, Isle of Wight
- Wrest Park, Bedfordshire
- Beeston Castle and Woodland Park, Cheshire
- Carisbrooke Castle, Isle of Wight
- Dover Castle, Kent
- Walmer Castle and Gardens, Kent
- Birdoswald Roman Fort, Cumbria
- Brodsworth Hall and Gardens, South Yorkshire
- Chesters Roman Fort and Museum, Northumberland
- Goodrich Castle, Herefordshire
- Old Sarum, Wiltshire
- Pendennis Castle, Cornwall
- Scarborough Castle, North Yorkshire
- Warkworth Castle and Hermitage, Northumberland
- Whitby Abbey, North Yorkshire
- Eltham Palace and Gardens, London
- Kenilworth Castle and Elizabethan Garden, Warwickshire
- Witley Court and Gardens, Worcestershire
- Kenwood, London
- Belsay Hall, Castle and Gardens, Northumberland
- Bolsover Castle, Derbyshire
(Pictures credit: ©English Heritage)