Visit Lincolnshire Holiday Activities
Wednesday, September 21, 2011 10:10:07 AM
With the demise of VISITLINCOLNSHIRE due to the 'austerity' cutbacks, it's been left to hobbyists, volunteers and local business to try and fill the void. With their leaflets still available in the library, it's probably worth formulating something similar giving the (updated) informative, trusted, links that were contained in them. If this is Cameron & Clegg's idea of 'Big Society', then I'm all for a Little Britain again, preferably devolved from The Bankers in Reykavik, Brussels, Bonn, Berlin, Strasbourg and / or Moscow and Beijing.
Cycling LincolnshireOne of the biggest counties in the UK, I've cycled the length and breadth of it these past several years. Perversely, the 'A' routes have the kindest gradients, whilst the lanes are much more quieter with less potential for 'traffic conflict'. Any holiday cycling should be planned, puncture kits and alternative routes being important. The distances and hills factored in and thought about as though you were in your home county. There's nothing flat about parts of Lincolnshire, and when there is, it's still nearly 10 miles to the coast across the Fen. Sustrans is the authority for cycling, and it's probably worth at least looking at what they recommend, although I come from the mindset of minimal safety gear, as it will probably set you back the cost of a small car to kit out a family in 'fashion accessory' bike gear. Maps of local cycle routes are still available in the tourist information centres, and maybe a better scale than national attempts. The North Sea Cycle Route partnership is a bit bizarre at first glance, but perhaps worth a browse to see where your tax and lottery money went. Generic national route maps and gift ideas are available at the Sustrans Shop.
The Lincolnshire County Council Countryside Access site is invaluable though, to cyclists and walkers / ramblers, and it's maps are worth consulting to see if that 'gated road' or 'bridleway' is a public right of way. With a bike shop in nearly every town, and car shops, market stalls and supermarkets, it's easier than it used to be to find repairs and spares 'on the road'.
Lincs Walking and RamblingWith vitamin D and exercise now being aknowledged as strengthening the bones and immunity and guarding against dis-ease, then a country walk or two is recommended. As someone who walked 2 miles to school and back from '68-'74, thence 4 miles from '75-'80, I must admit, I missed it when eventually progressing to wheels. Of the Lincolnshire oriented rambling sites, Lincs Vikings seem very eventful. However, even in the quiet season, the beach can be a refreshing walk, with guaranteed facilities every few miles, and bizarrely empty considering the crowds on sweltering days, when burning and sunstroke is a hazard.
The Wolds Walking Festival has a selection of maps and routes planned. In Lincolnshire, of all counties, it's worth hi-liting the country code, shutting gates, saving litter and keeping right in country lanes. The area east of Woodhall, out to Bardney, has quite a bit of woodland left. It does feel very ancient, and there's a website about them: Limewoods. As a youngster in the Midlands, I'd spend quite a bit of time on the Shand-Kydd estate, with it's own ruined Conqueror Castle and medieval tracks. I often felt I'd have some explaining to do if I slipped back through time and came across a yeoman or knight on horseback. Should I change the course of history, or keep quiet and let it all happen again..? ...
Water ParksProbably out of the way, except for car drivers, there's a wonderful park near Barton on Humber. I prefer to watch the ships from Fulletby ridge in high power binoculars, but there's nothing like the excitement and majesty of a larger vessel close up. Water Sedge Country Park probably entails passing the Humberside Airport, so another chance to see majestic vessels. Then with the prevalence of 'Lincolnshire UFOs' lately... Selling children's toys and gifts, they look well worth a visit should time permit. Over by the Fosse Way, equally distant to Horncastle, is the Natural World Centre, which looks a promising place to leave older relatives at whilst taking the wife to the city centre shops. Cogglesford Mill is also better reached by car. Sitting on the River Slea to the north east of the town for a millenia, grinding grains to meal, it now boasts a cafe and craft shop. In medieval times, the miller was the only one allowed to grind and weigh, at penalty of loss of hands if you tried to do it yourself. This gave the squire a trusted central point to exact taxes, and the miller enough money to place costly 'coggles' (cobbles) under water in the nearby ford to make it safer. It wasn't unusual for a small fordable river to be able to power heavy unlubricated millstones, and at their height there was a mill every 2 miles all the way back to near the river origin. And a windmill on every second hill. In Lincoln City itself, another ford, the Brayford Pool easily takes about an hour to wander round. With the swan a protected bird, the flock is growing quite well, and can be found hanging around the waterside mall area of the river awaiting scraps.
Generic map searches of google now turn up a host of attractions. Cleethorpes I managed by bicycle from Horncastle, although it is a heavy trip back through the Wolds. With Google Street View / satellite view, photos, place pages, image search, almost too much information is available. The south beach at Cleethorpes is one of the best I've seen, with fine expanses of white sand. The ice cream 'cave' was cheaper than an ice cream van and also did a fair coffee, whilst watching the Humber ships was an attraction in itself, with east Yorkshire just across the water.
Coast Trip Photos
At Mablethorpe it is no where near as crowded as the late sixties, when a Funfair was in residence on the beach approach. Sutton on Sea, just down the coast and Saltfleet / Donna Nook seal sanctuary to the north, make this a really attractive proposition. Many caravaners and campers make their way to the large camp sites in the summer, but Spring and Autumn can be a surprising treat if trying to avoid crowds. Approaching the Big parks by Chapel St Leonards and Ingoldmells, Skegness can be as crowded as any city in the high season. Many Lincolnshire folk either go down early or late in the year, when some shops operate out of season pricing to try and keep trade ticking over.
More watery goings-on just South of Coningsby, where Tattershall Lakes often gets return visitors year after year. Boasting jet ski on the lakes, and probably Coningsby jets overhead, it's within view of the medieval castle where Capt John Smith, future President of Virginia and friend of Pocahontas, learned his combat skills. The Tattershall Village has more than enough visitor attractions nearby with Thorpe Camp, the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, castle, pubs, church and countryside.
Farm Park Webcam
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