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Out and about with Orla


Welcome to our newest Countryside Online feature!  Each week, Countryside team member Orla McIlduff will be giving you a run-down of her top five countryside-related things to do for the forthcoming weekend.

This week, Orla discovers the varied programme of Hay Festival, and appreciates some of the ultimate tribute acts alongside sausages and cider.

Hay Festival of Literature and the Arts, 25 May-4 June 2017


Price: Various prices depending on shows

Location: Dairy Meadows, Brecon Road, Hay on Wye, HR3 5PJ

More Info:  Click here to visit the Hay Festival website

Now in its 30th year, the Hay Festival is famous for embracing creativity in its many forms, be that through music, storytelling, poetry or science. Over the course of 10 days in May, there’s a varied and interesting programme to suit all tastes.

Situated within the Brecon Beacons, this collaboration of minds started out around a kitchen table in 1987. There are events for children, teenagers and adults alike, so check out the Hay Festival website to plan your visit. Make sure to look out for the more novel events during the festival, including BBC Radio 3’s sound walk and the morning yoga sessions. 

Essex Sausage and Cider Music Festival, 26-28 May 2017


Price: Tickets from £13.46

Location: Barleylands Farm, Barleylands Road, Billericay, CM11 2UD

More Info: Click here to visit the Essex Sausage and Cider Music Festival booking page.

If you feel that Glastonbury has taken its toll on your bank account for too many years, this may just be the replacement festival you’ve been looking for. Essex Sausage and Cider Music Festival promises three days of the best tribute acts around and to be completely honest the lure of sausages and cider is enough to get me on board.

This year the festival is launching a new ‘glamping’ section with beautiful bell tents, or if you want the true camping experience without the hassle, book a pre-pitched tent with Tangerine Fields. For the hard-core festival goers or novice campers alike, this festival looks set to be a great bet for a fun bank holiday weekend

Myths and Monsters May Half Term at Castle Howard, 27 May-4 June 2017


Price: £10-£19 (dependent on age) Under 4s free

Location: Castle Howard, York, YO60 7DA

More Info:  Click here to visit the Castle Howard website

Adults will most likely remember Castle Howard as the set of several adaptations of Evelyn Waugh’s Brideshead Revisited, when the vast stately home and all that it represented became the downfall of young Charles Ryder.

However for an altogether more fun experience at Castle Howard, join Hesiod the Storyteller who will bring the garden statues to life with tales of old. This interactive fun-filled afternoon will combine music, games and activities to really bring the ‘myths and monsters’ theme to life!

Burnham-on-Sea Food Festival, 27 May 2017


Price: Free

Location: Burnham-on-Sea, Somerset, EX5 1DJ

More Info: Click here to visit the Burnham-on-Sea Food Festival’s website.

Beverley and Sarah Milner Simonds are on a mission to bring local and fresh British produce back into the forefront of the public’s imagination. Their not-for-profit festival in Burnham-on-Sea will showcase the best of Somerset’s food and drink scene.

Not only will there be tasty treats for all, there’s so much more to this festival, which is designed for foodies such as myself. The Hawksmoor Cookery School are hosting four workshops over the course of the day, and to keep the little ones entertained there will be face-painting and traditional fun fair rides.

Living Heritage Game and Country Fair, Burghley House, 28-29 May 2017


Price: £4-£14 (dependent on age), Under 4s free

Location: Burghley House, Stamford, Lincolnshire, PE9 3JY

More Info: Click here to visit the Burghley Game and Country Fair website 

Located just outside the picturesque town of Stamford, Burghley House’s Game and Country Fair is the perfect escape after a long week in the office. Take a relaxing a day exploring the beauty of the house and garden, and enjoy the best of what the British countryside has to offer.

If you’re a fan of sports or an animal lover, this is definitely the day out for you. From dog agility to carriage driving and falconry, even extreme sports are covered in the form of ‘horseboarding’! Imagine a horse and rider towing a skateboarder – sounds crazy but believe me it’s worth the watch.

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