If you get bored here over there on the right under pages there’s some more rubbish to read.




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Saltwells Nature Reserve

Saltwells Local Nature Reserve
off Coppice Lane,
Quarry Bank,
West Midlands,

Admission free, free parking

Covering 247 acres the Saltwells Local Nature Reserve is one of the largest urban nature reserves in the UK.

Over the years the land and wood land has been used for  cold mining and charcoal.

Lady Dudley planted Saltwells Wood in the eighteenth century to hide the scars of the coal mining and to provide wood for charcoal for the fast growing iron industry.¬†Within the wood is Doulton’s Claypit¬† abandoned in the 1940’s, South of the wood¬† is an area of scrubland and meadow, plus a large reedswamp , and to the north of the woodland is the gorse covered Netherton Hill.

Walking around the reserve can take hours or even days to see everything, we only did a small part of it on our Christmas day walk. We took in the canal and the sculpture trail, so another trip there will be taken.


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Baggeridge Country Park

Baggeridge Country Park

Gospel End, Sedgley

South Staffordshire


Admission Free, car parking £3 for the day

Originally a coal mine in the 19th and early 20th century with winding gear and open cast workings, waste heaps. thirty foot seam were mined under the Manor and outlying parts of Woverhampton by the Black Country’s deepest underground workers.

The pit  was closed on March 1st 1968 leaving behind a eyesore landscape  of  an  industrial waste land of rusting metalwork, mining debris  and man made mountains. The decision was taken by Seisdon Rural District Council, later to become South Staffordshire District Council to buy the site.  In 1970 Country Park status was granted.

The reclamation of the land  included building pools, landscaping of rolling meadows, planting of woodland and the fantastic view point as well as play areas and a car park. Now the park also as a tearoom, toilets, mountain bike trail, miniature railway, horse riding trails, high ropes adventure, fishing and offers a camping site.

The major  feature is the Bag Pool Рa haven of tranquillity and an environment for a wide range of wildlife, a good spot to spot Kingfishers. The pool is so well built it looks  natural in appearance.

A steep climb takes you to ‘The Toposcope viewpoint on¬† the highest hill’, it was created from the remains of the colliery waste. The climb to the top is rewarded with¬† views to Sedgley and in the opposite direction to the pools and grounds of Himley Hall, and in the¬† distance¬† the Lickeys, Maverns, Clees, Long Mynd and Wrekin.

This is a beautiful place to walk, no matter what time of year or the weather, either take off on your own or follow one of the 4 marked walks, there is also an easy walk to Himley  park from here.


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The Ghost Bus Tours

Starts at the Train Station
South side of the Royal York Hotel.

Admission Adults £23, child £15

I can only describe this trip as a cross between Fawlty Towers and The Blair Witch Project. Funny with a few jumps too, it’s a great fun way to spend an hour and half.

You board the dimly lit bus , which is haunted¬†ūüĎĽ and are driven around York stopping off at various spots to hear stories of the ghosts that haunt the places.

In between these stories you are entertained by a video link to a reporter looking for the ghost in the Rowntrees chocolate factory.¬† That’s as much as I want to say about that. I can’t say too much without spoiling it.




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Yorkshire Museum

Yorkshire Museum
Museum Gardens

Admission Adults £7.50, child free with paying adult or £4.00

Quite a large museum which looks at prehistoric times and tells the story of how the Roman Legions founded the city of York over 2,000 years ago. There are some very interesting exhibits including Viking and Medieval treasures and Iron Age gold jewellery.

The Meet the People of the Empire gallery is in part a hands on experience, some of the artifacts can be handled and there’s a dressing up bench.¬† At the end of this section the bones and skulls of six people who came to Eboracum from all over the Empire are housed. The remains in glass cases have information about their lives and health which scientists have discovered from their bones, clever stuff.

The museum is set in the stunning surroundings of the medieval ruins of St. Mary’s Abbey, the gardens are also home to Yorkshire’s oldest working observatory.

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York Minster

Y01 7HH

Admission Adult £10 child Free.

York Minster was built¬†¬†between 1220 and 1472 and took over 250 to bring it to what is seen today.¬† It’s full name being¬†‘Cathedral and Metropolitical Church of St Peter in York’ The first church in this spot was a wooden chapel¬† constructed for the baptism of King Edward of Northumbria in 627. This was later replaced with a stone church which was built on the site of a Roman basilica.

This was destroyed by the Danes during the  period that followed the invasion of William The Conqueror, it was then rebuilt in the Norman manner.

In the 13th century when the Gothic style swept across Europe, a  rebuild was ordered, in hopes that this new structure would rival the elegance of the new cathedral constructed in Canterbury.

The minster that we see toady was built from creamy-white magnesian limestone quarried from  Tadcaster.

The minster is a truly beautiful and awe-inspiring building, that you must take your time in seeing, a whiz around it won’t do.




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York’s Chocolate Story

York’s Chocolate story
Kings Square
Y01 7LD

Admission Adult £11.50 child £9.50

Those on a diet beware, lot’s of samples on this tour. I really enjoyed this place and not just because of the chocolate.

The tour starts with a talk about York’s chocolate and a sample, then moves¬† on to a surround film about the history of chocolate and a sample, next comes a very cleverly done history of York’s chocolate done with talking portraits and another sample. Another talk and into the chocolate making room. Here you are shown how the cocoa bean is turned into chocolate, yet another sample but this time you are taught how to eat this piece like a professional taster.¬† ¬†Next you make your own chocolate lolly-pop to take away, whilst this is setting you watch the professionals make chocolate filled chocolates, which you get to eat. Collected your lolly-pop and take a look around the museum at your own leisure.¬† On exit you can buy more chocolate or try a hot chocolate, cake etc. I can highly¬† recommend¬† the hot chocolate, but I wish I had stuck to just the one.


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York Castle Museum

Eye of York,

Admission adults £10, child free with adult up to 4 children then £4.50 per child.

A lovely museum¬†¬†that is housed in an 18th century prison buildings and you can easily spend a full day wandering around it. There’s so much to look at from period rooms to the story of York chocolate, relive your childhood with a trip through the toy gallery.
The world-famous Victorian cobbled street Kirkgate takes you back to Victorian times for a full 24 hours, as you wander around the buildings and streets you can hear the street vendors, dogs barking and children playing. As evening falls the light dims and a thunderer storm starts, morning comes as the light comes back to the sound of news paper sellers and barrow boys calls.

An iron corset and crotchless pantaloons from the time of Jane Austen are just a couple of the items of clothing in the ‘Shaping the Body 400 Years of Fashion, Food and Life exhibition.

Until the end of 2018 an exhibition called 1914-When The World Changed Forever can be seen.   The exhibition starts in the pre-war golden age of peace and prosperity then you are sent  to the recruitment office and travel via train to the horrors of the frontline.  Rats, foot rot, shell shock and gas warfare are all shown.

In it’s day the prison was both brutal and crooked, In the¬† original cells of the¬†prison you can see some of the most infamous inmates brought to life by projections on the cell walls. You meet it’s most notorious prisoner¬† Dick Turpin who was hanged, the last woman to¬† be burnt at the stake in Yorkshire, a Luddite, a notorious turnkey, a man who was beaten so badly in prison he died and a young tearaway who went on to lead a successful life in Australia.

A small sixties  exhibition recreate the decade which saw momentous change in many areas of public and private life. The gallery uses iconic objects from  social history, art, fashion, military and astronomy collections to bring back the atmosphere of change which swept over the country in the 1960’s. exhibits include a Lambretta scooter, a Dansette record player, Beatles singles and fashion by Mary Quant.


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