Category Archives: Activities

THE GRAND ESCAPE – WHY GRANDPARENTS SHOULD CHOOSE UK BREAKS TO MAKE LASTING MEMORIES WITH GRANDCHILDREN

IN TIME for National Grandparents Day (Sunday 01 October 2017) Parkdean Resorts has enlisted the support of five regional tourist boards to celebrate why the UK is great for multigenerational breaks.

‘3G’ groups were amongst the 500,000 holidaymakers the UK’s largest holiday park operator welcomed last year, giving families the chance to spend quality time together – the most common reason for multigenerational holidays according to a recent survey by Saga Travel Insurance*.

Parkdean Resorts has identified Cornwall, the Isle of Wight, Norfolk, Northumberland and Essex as increasingly popular regions for grandparents, parents and grandchildren to seek adventure during a break, away from the distractions of school, work and everyday routines.

Self-catering staycations can be a cost-effective option bookable all-year-round, with holiday parks home to spacious accommodation fitted with essentials, as well as a variety of facilities and activities all ages can appreciate – especially as grandparents are often enjoying more active retirements.

John Waterworth, chief executive of Parkdean Resorts, said: “Some of my best memories of my grandparents are from holidays altogether in Cornwall, as well as at the caravan they owned in the North East. We explored the local areas, spent endless days at the beach and played board games on the rare occasion it rained. It still makes me feel a great sense of happiness when I think of those fond memories to this day.

“Caravan holidays have changed a lot since then, but their appeal for multigenerational breaks remains the same. We’re keen to encourage families to holiday together and enjoy uninterrupted moments, and are pleased to have partnered with a number of the UK’s tourist boards who share the same values, highlighting some of the best regions for ‘3G’ breaks.”

Surrounding areas also have plenty to discover as highlighted by the five tourist boards, encouraging children and teens to ditch tech and engage in exciting experiences, making life-long memories with loved ones, from crabbing in Looe Harbour to paddle boarding on the Isle of Wight.

Visit Cornwall recommends families walk across the causeway to St Michael’s Mount, go to Pendennis Castle and play knights and kings, explore the streets and alleyways of St Ives, take a ferry trip out of Falmouth and tuck into some Cornish pasties.

Malcolm Bell, chief executive of Visit Cornwall, said: “Cornwall is a unique destination as it attracts the senior market, families and is loved by children, making it an ideal place for a holiday with three generations in tow.

“There’s nothing better than families holidaying altogether at the place where grandad and grandma used to take their children, seeing their grandkids play on the same beach. It is the ultimate nostalgia trip.”

Visit Isle of Wight recommends cycling along the family-friendly Red Squirrel Trail, trying out water sports from sailing to waterskiing, getting aboard the Isle of Wight Steam Railway and meeting dinosaurs at Dinosaur Isle.

David Thornton, chief executive of Visit Isle of Wight, said: “The Isle of Wight is packed with history and adventure from dinosaurs to pirates, making it a destination full of discovery that will excite thrill-seeking teenagers as much as mini explorers, parents and grandparents.

“The Island’s exciting natural environment is the perfect holiday playground, and is just four miles from the mainland. There really is something to keep the whole family happy come rain or shine.”

Visit Norfolk recommends going under the sea at Sea Life Great Yarmouth, animal spotting at Banham Zoo, going on a boat cruise on the Broads, playing hide and seek in Thetford Forest and heading out on a steam train on The Poppy Line.

 Pete Waters, manager of Visit Norfolk, said: “Norfolk is a great region for 3G breaks as its natural and built capital are ideal for all ages to enjoy, with accommodation providers increasingly catering for multiple generations holidaying together. Not only do 3G breaks help to spread the cost, but also provide an opportunity for quality time, sometimes not always easy to do with busy schedules or families living far apart.

“Regardless of the season, Norfolk’s 93 miles of coastline are always great to explore, as well as the variety of visitor attractions which have invested in weather-proofing their facilities in recent years to ensure a great day out irrespective of the weather.”

Northumberland Tourism recommends exploring nature and history at Belsay Hall Castle and Gardens, learning about the county’s Roman heritage at the Roman Army Museum next to one of the most complete sections of Hadrian’s Wall, and heading to Bamburgh Beach to build sandcastles or marvel in the beauty of Bamburgh Castle.

Jude Leitch, director at Northumberland Tourism, said: “We prefer the slower pace of life in Northumberland, making it the perfect place for an unforgettable multigenerational holiday – whatever the time of year. From the gardens of our stately homes and castles bursting into bloom in spring, to the darkest skies in Europe twinkling with thousands of stars in the winter, there’s something for all interests and ages.

“Generations have lived as part of the Northumberland landscape for centuries, creating a rich heritage and protecting a way of life together. We hope visitors to the county will discover the warmth of our welcome, and return time and time again to holiday together as a family unit.”

 Visit Essex recommends spending the day at Colchester Zoo, taking a trip to Osea Island to appreciate scenery that rivals overseas landscapes, exploring Dedham Vale – an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, and tucking into fish and chips and ice creams on a traditional day at the seaside at Southend-on-Sea, Clacton-on-Sea or Mersea Island.

Carol Jolly, tourism marketing & PR manager at Visit Essex, said: “In Essex we are extremely lucky to have a bit of everything – an amazing coastline, wonderful rolling countryside, quaint villages and inspiring towns, as well as over 450 visitor attractions ranging from beautiful historic houses to galleries, museums and theme parks.

“I believe visitors to Essex will be pleasantly surprised by what we have to offer and will enjoy the many different facets of our wonderful county whatever their age, making us a go-to destination for families enjoying holidays together.”

In line with National Grandparents Day, Parkdean Resorts is offering grandparents and families looking to book a multigenerational break a 10% saving on selected spring and early summer 2018 holidays at any of its holiday parks. The discount is available on bookings made between 01 October and 22 October 2017, by using code 3GHOL when booking online. Minimum price after offer is applied is £99 on breaks and £149 on seven night stays. Cannot be used with any other discount.

*https://www.saga.co.uk/newsroom/press-releases/2017/may/multi-generational-holidays-bring-families-together

For further information on Parkdean Resorts visit www.parkdeanresorts.co.uk or call 0330 123 4850.

ENDS

For all media enquiries, photography requests or more information please contact Kayleigh Hepburn or Sally Crossley by emailing kayleigh@opr.co.uk / sally@opr.co.uk or call 0191 232 5690.

Notes to editors:

Parkdean Resorts formed in November 2015 following the merger of Parkdean Holidays and Park Resorts. As a result the company is the largest holiday park operator in the UK with a combined total of 73 holiday parks stretching across the country. Vauxhall Holiday Park in Great Yarmouth was acquired by Parkdean Resorts as part of the first major acquisition since the company merged.

Holidaymakers have an unrivalled choice from one operator of holidays and short breaks across the UK with parks in Cornwall, Devon, Dorset, East Anglia and Lincolnshire, Essex, Hampshire, Isle of Wight, Kent and Sussex, Lake District, Lancashire, Northumberland and County Durham, Yorkshire, Scotland and Wales.

A varied range of accommodation options are available on a break with Parkdean Resorts, including static caravans, lodges and glamping, as well as taking a touring or camping pitch. There’s also the option to own a caravan or lodge holiday home at 68 of the parks, meaning UK breaks can be enjoyed more frequently.

In December 2016, Parkdean Resorts was named Best UK Holiday Parks Operator, Best Camping & Mobile Holiday Company and Best Large Holiday Company for Customer Service at the British Travel Awards.

 

Isle of Wight invites holidaymakers to “Return to Adventure Island”

The Isle of Wight is being promoted as one, big holiday island attraction in a summer-long campaign that’s being dubbed “Return to Adventure Island”.

Just launched, and based squarely on the fact that visitors and families have been coming on holiday to the Island for almost two centuries, the campaign is designed to help illustrate that fact that there are now more reasons than ever before to book a visit the Isle of Wight.

Visitors over the decades have discovered there are so many places to see and things to do on an Island the size of Inner London.  So many of them are natural, some are man-made, but all combine to offer a host of holiday memories that last a lifetime…and also keep generations of families coming back for more.

It’s a timeless, magical Island, that can only be reached from the mainland across a small strip of water – giving trippers, tourists and travellers that true holiday feeling.

And in 2017 The Island will welcome several new attractions and experiences, including the Tiny Homes Holidays concept; Modulogs at Tom’s Eco Lodge; a magical Underwater Kingdom at Blackgang Chine; Jurassic Golf on Shanklin Seafront; and even the appearance of the little Squirrel Monkey which has just been rescued by Monkey Haven.

The Island as a whole is perfect for families who want to enjoy themselves together at the likes of Needles Landmark Attraction, or follow in the footsteps of Dinosaurs along the beaches; and the Return to Adventure Island campaign captures the essence of it all – from the glorious beaches to thrilling adventures, and the great range of accommodation to fabulous festivals.

Stay in a treehouse.  Search for red squirrels.  And learn bushcraft on the beach.  Then, after lobster on chips, take an exhilarating ride to a Victorian fort.  Or, travel back in time with the Isle of Wight Steam Railway, and visit a National Museum of Poo!  As visitors over the centuries have discovered, every day can be a fresh adventure.

Betters still, it’s all just two hours hours away from London, followed by a 10 minute Hovercraft ride to the Island – with car and passenger ferries connecting the Island from Southampton, Lymington and Portsmouth.

The ferry companies and Hovertravel run regular promotions, including day returns from £5, and it’s also possible to also book great value tickets that combine transport with entrance into the leading attractions

Full details can be found at https://www.visitisleofwight.co.uk/inspiration/escape-to-adventure-island.

Visitors who book their holiday to Isle of Wight through Visit Isle of Wight, meanwhile, will be invited to download a free app for their iPhone or Android smartphone.  The Adventure Island App, which launches on April 1, is packed with insider’s tips and trails to help holidaymakers make the most of their stay.

It also gives all visitors the chance to take part in a virtual treasure hunt with lots of prizes on offer including, for one lucky family, the chance to win back the entire cost of their holiday.

The Return to Adventure Island website will also feature all of the latest special offers for deals on accommodation: when searching to find the perfect place to stay, just look out for the blue suitcase featured on selected accommodation for special deals with ferry inclusive prices.

For all tourist information about the Isle of Wight, visit www.visitisleofwight.co.uk.

-ENDS-

For further information about The Isle of Wight, please contact:

Sue Emmerson, Tel: 07766 705672, Email: sue@visitwight.co.uk

Notes to Editors

Working in partnership with Visit England, Visit Isle of Wight Ltd (VIOW) is responsible for developing tourism and attracting more visitors to the Isle of Wight.   As well as the consumer website www.visitisleofwight.co.uk the DMO also operates a small industry website containing recent research and tourism news along with links to Visit England reports and opportunities www.visitwight.org

Get social media updates from Visit Isle of Wight.   Go to https://www.facebook.com/VisitIOW, https://twitter.com/VisitIOW, https://instagram.com/visitisleofwight/, https://www.youtube.com/user/VisitIsleofWight, https://plus.google.com/114584030216192729120/posts

Fun and frolics on the Isle of Wight this February half-term

The February half-term presents the ideal opportunity for taking the family away and a break on the Isle of Wight with its traditional seaside resorts and activities to suit toddlers through to teens, will give the whole family a holiday to remember.

Experience the great outdoors as you go in search of dinosaur remains, cycle the traffic-free Troll Trail, or build a snowman out of sand.

This half-term, you could also be one of the first to see rescued tiger Simi in her new Isle of Wight home, or swing by the award-winning Monkey Haven – a sanctuary for monkeys and other animals in need.  And if it should rain on the ‘sunshine isle’ you can always jump for joy at the Island’s new all-weather trampoline park with its 40 interconnecting trampolines, or set a new record at the Island’s all-weather karting track.

These and more great adventures can be enjoyed on the Island this February half-term:

Sandman Snowman Spectacular

Come to Small Hope Beach in Shanklin and build a sandman/snowman.    Past years have seen the beach populated by mermaids, dolphins, dogs, sandmen, sand ladies and a whole array of other characters.  There’ll be hot chocolate on hand to warm chilly fingers and the nice people from Gift to Nature will also provide the coal and carrots for your creations – you just need to bring a spade, the creative ideas and bags of enthusiasm.

Date:               21st February, 2-4pm.

Where:            Small Hope Beach, Shanklin, PO37 6EA.

Cost:                £2 per person – suitable for adults and children.

More:               Call 01983 201565 for more details.

http://www.visitisleofwight.co.uk/whats-on/sandman-snowman-p1197861

Electric Woods: Spirit of the Orient

A stunning spectacle of Oriental themed light, sound and entertainment will mark the Chinese New Year at Robin Hill’s award-winning ‘electric woods’ during February half-term.  Visitors can enjoy a series of new sound ‘and light displays dispersed around the woodland and  children can join in the celebration by taking part in a fun and interactive dragon procession with a 12m long dragon costume.  There will also be an amazing falconry show in the amphitheatre, which includes the falcon, Baldric, showing off his new ‘head cam projection’ where visitors literally get a ‘bird’s eye view’ of the show.

Date:               February 13- 21, from 5pm to 9pm.

Where:            Robin Hill Adventure Park & Gardens, Downend, Near Arreton, Newport PO30 2NU.

Cost:                Tickets cost £10.95 per person (aged 4+) and are available to purchase in advance from the website: www.electricwoods.co.uk

More:                   http://robin-hill.com/events/february-2016-

Victorian Fun and Games at Osborne

Experience a range of fun games and pastimes played by children in Victorian England and learn how the royal children would have lived and played at Osborne.

Date:               15th to 19th February

Where:            Osborne, York Avenue, East Cowes, Isle of Wight, PO32 6JX.

Cost:                £10.50 (adult), £6.30 (age 5 to 15), £9.59 (concession) £27.50 (family).   Free for English Heritage members.

More:               http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/whats-on/victorian-fun-and-games-Osb-15-02-2016/

Woodland event at Borthwood Copse, near Sandown.

Have fun exploring the ancient woodland at Borthwood Copse at this National Trust family event.  Find out more about the life of the Island’s native red squirrels, woodland trails, wild art and balancing poles. Have a go at creating your own squirrel dray and make a squirrel mask.  Bring a picnic lunch and wear trainers, or walking boots, with good grip for balancing on wooden poles.

Date:               February 17, 11am to 3pm

Where:            Meet at Borthwood Copse (SZ 566 844). Parking limited, Bus route No. 8

Cost:                Free – donations to cover cost of materials welcome.

More:               http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/events/50d545e4-0dfe-4161-80b0-0c3f3cd197d2/pages/details

Activity Days at Newport Roman Villa

The well-preserved remains at Newport Roman Villa provide a fascinating insight into country life in third century Britain. The villa has a superb bath suite with under floor heating and remnants of mosaic floors.  This February half-term families can get hands on at two fun activity days:  ‘Clay Day’ on February 15 and ‘Crafty Day’ on February 17.   Visitors can also find out more about the Roman occupation of the Isle of Wight by exploring the exhibition area, which displays artefacts found throughout the Island.

Date:               February 15 (Clay Day) and February 17 (Crafty Day), 11am to 3pm

Where:            Newport Roman Villa, Cypress Road, PO30 1HA

Cost:               £1 per person to include entry to site and all activities – no booking required.

More:              For more information call 01983 823433 or e-mail museums@iow.gov.uk

Wildlife Activity Day at Freshwater Fruit Farm

Amphibians and reptiles are hibernating at this time of the year but there are red squirrels in the garden and a wide variety of birds.   So get out of doors and join members of the Wight Squirrel Project for a range of activities that include searching for wildlife around the farm, storytelling, plus homemade hotdogs for lunch.

Date:               February 16th, starting at 11am

Where:            Freshwater Fruit Farm, Wilmingham Lane, Freshwater, PO40 9UG.  Parking is available on site.

Cost:                £3 including lunch for children and £1.50 for refreshments (tea/coffee/biscuits) for adults.

More:               Please call 01983 753413 to book your place and for any queries.

Half-term fun at the Garlic Farm

There are lots of fun activities taking place throughout this February half term at the Island’s Garlic Farm.   So come along to the farm and learn all about garlic with regular talks and demonstrations.

Date:               13th to 21st February, 11am to 3pm

Where:            The Garlic Farm, Mersley Lane, Newchurch, PO36 0NR

Cost:                Entry to the farm is free and activities are individually priced – see website for more details.

More:               http://www.visitisleofwight.co.uk/whats-on/halft-term-fun-at-the-garlic-farm-p1247201

 

For more fun and frolics this February half-term, go to http://www.visitisleofwight.co.uk/inspiration/february-half-term

World’s best climbers return to the Isle of Wight for innovative climbing competition

Tim Emmett and Angelika Rainer took the male and female titles of Red Bull White Cliffs champion respectively after the competition returned to the iconic Needles on the Isle of Wight.

With weather more akin to a balmy July than early October, 15 of the world’s best ice and adventure climbers made the ferry crossing from the mainland to experience the beautiful and rugged coastline of the Isle of Wight and climb the towering cliffs over Scratchell’s Bay.  Set with the task of scaling the 115m overhanging chalk cliff in the shortest time possible pushed the climbers to the limit all weekend, challenging stamina, endurance and skill in a new way.

Following a day of practice and qualification, the competition started in earnest and Angelina Rainer took her strong qualifying form into the finals where she prevailed as champion. The men’s competition saw the top 3 climbers separated by just 11 seconds with UK climber Emmett ensuring the title returned to these shores.

Speaking of her victory Angelika said, “It is such a great feeling…it is probably the most amazing competition I have ever been involved in, at such an incredible location. The climb was unforgettable and to be able to climb in such a unique place was really a joy.”

Whilst Tim spoke of his victory at Red Bull White Cliffs, “It’s such a brilliant opportunity to climb with some of the best climbers in the world and it’s good to keep it local!”

Katie Jones, Events Manager for Visit Isle of Wight, said: “The Isle of Wight is well known for hosting outdoor sporting events and we are delighted that the exciting Red Bull White Cliffs competition has become a part of the Island’s event scene.  The Needles is the perfect venue for the climb and it’s a great opportunity for us to showcase this beautiful area with its breath-taking scenery and great attractions.”

Marino Zanti, general manager, The Needles Landmark attraction said, “We were again delighted to play our part in welcoming Red Bull to such an iconic destination. Our famous chairlift was appreciated by the climbers who used it to travel down to Alum Bay allowing them to save their energy for the event.”

ENDS

Notes to editors:

Results:

MEN

1st) Tim Emmett – 16:48:71

2nd) Jeff Mercier – 16:51:90

3rd) Alexey Tomilov – 16:59:80

 

WOMEN

1st) Angelika Rainer – 21:33:75

2nd) HanNaRai Song – 24:05:69

3rd) Sarah Hueniken – 29:36:43

 

For any questions or for the opportunity to speak to any of the climbers please contact christopher.mease@uk.redbull.com.

A full selection of images from the event will be available at www.redbullcontentpool.com from Tuesday 6th October.

For more information about The Needles Landmark Attraction visit theneedles.co.uk or follow on Twitter @VisitTheNeedles.

Enjoy Island life for the day with Wightlink Ferries – New day trip rates at £45 per family ticket make an Isle of Wight escape a summer must do

Wightlink Ferries has introduced a new foot passenger family rate on its fast Catamaran service from Portsmouth Harbour to Ryde, and families can now hop over to the Island for a day trip for just £45.  A family ticket is valid for a family group of up to five people; minimum 1 adult and maximum 2 adults in the group, making a return day trip from just £9 per person*.

The Catamaran journey to Ryde, one of the Island’s most bustling towns, takes just 20 minutes, making a day trip to England’s largest Island a must do for castaways this summer.   Alternatively, foot passengers can travel from Portsmouth to Fishbourne or Lymington to Yarmouth for a slightly longer journey of 40 minutes at only £37.50 for a day trip.

Alongside the new rates, Wightlink has introduced a new section to its website that highlights the range of brilliant things to do in a day– www.wightlink.co.uk/daytrips.  Some can be reached on foot or by bike (foot passengers can take bikes on board the ferries at no additional cost) and others can be reached by the Island’s excellent public transport network.

Five of Wightlink’s favourite family days out this summer are:

Osborne House, Queen Victoria’s famous Royal residence in East Cowes, is transforming its spectacular grounds into an open air Luna Cinema under the stars for three nights during August. Families can indulge in a selection of hot food and drinks served from a range of vintage vehicles prior to enjoying the evening entertainment. Tickets cost £13.50 per adult and £9.00 per child.

Foot passengers disembarking the Catamaran at Ryde Pier can catch Southern Vectis bus route 4 towards East Cowes and arrive at Osborne House in just 30 minutes.

Throughout the summer, Robin Hill Adventure Park will play host to a number of stunning summer evenings, with lots of carnival style entertainment, live music and performances. Standard tickets cost from £13.50 each.

Families bringing their bikes along for the day can peddle to Robin Hill from Ryde Pier in just 45 minutes.

The Garlic Festival, 15-16 August, has become one of the Island’s most iconic events and is a superb family day out. Alongside the celebration of garlic (including in ice cream and beer form) there is live entertainment and music.  Rachel Koo will be this year’s guest chef. Tickets cost £9.50 per adult.

For families looking to combine some exercise into their visit, the 5.7 mile walk from Ryde Pier to the Garlic Festival is the perfect option.

Blackgang Chine has been attracting visitors for more than 170 years and is the perfect spot to keep the kids entertained. From spending the day as a princess, to drawing guns at noon or enjoying a dinosaur ride, there is plenty of fun to be had. Standard tickets cost from £16 per person.

Southern Vectis bus Route 7 runs from Yarmouth Bus Station, close to the Terminal. Route 7 connects to the Island bus interchange at Newport. From here Route 6 runs regular services to Blackgang Chine.

Located on the Isle of Wight’s beautiful heritage coastline, The Needles Landmark Attraction offers an exciting family day out. For spectacular views of Alum Bay Beach and Needles Rocks, take a ride on the chair lift.

This is the ideal attraction for foot passengers arriving into Yarmouth, as families can get on board the frequent number 7 bus route and arrive at The Needles in just 25 minutes.

Providing the perfect opportunity to unwind, relax and enjoy family time together, there is no better place to visit than the Isle of Wight for a special summer escape, even if just for a day**.

For more information on the exciting events and activities taking place on the Isle of Wight during summer, download Wightlink’s Wightlife brochure, which is available as an app, via http://www.wightlink.co.uk/wightlife.  Also, check out the Wightlife blog at http://wightlife.com.

*Adults includes any person aged 16 and over

**Longer stays are also encouraged. Explore a range of accommodation options and offers at www.wightlink.co.uk/stay

ENDS

For more information about Wightlink Ferries, please contact:

Sophy Norris               01392 248 934            sophy.norris@flagshipconsulting.co.uk
Belinda Hallworth        0207 680 7114            belinda.hallworth@flagshipconsulting.co.uk
Nadia Fidler                0207 680 7122           nadia.fidler@flagshipconsulting.co.uk

 

Wightlink – Part of Island Life

 

Wightlink is the leading cross-Solent ferry operator carrying almost five million holidaymakers and Islanders across the Solent to the Isle of Wight every year. Nine ferries on three routes provide Island-wide coverage and complete 48,000 sailings a year giving Islanders an easy and frequent service to the mainland, and tourists an accessible way to enjoy a taste of Island life.

You can step off the train from London, hop on a Wightlink catamaran and be on the Island in just 22 minutes, the car ferries take around 40 minutes from Portsmouth and Lymington. On board, passengers and drivers alike can relax in the lounges and enjoy some refreshments before arriving on the Island to enjoy the range of attractions, events and experiences that make the Isle of Wight a leading destination for tourists.

The opening of the Hindhead Tunnel in Surrey has cut journey times to Portsmouth from Greater London. By contrast, Wightlink’s port at Lymington is reached by an attractive drive through the scenic New Forest.

Prices:

Mainland

Day Return: Car + 7 passengers from £43.75* Short Breaks (2-4 nights): Car + 7 passengers from £54.25**

*Terms & Conditions apply, subject to availability, valid for sailings 08:00 – 09:59 and 16:00 – 17:59. Price based on outward journey crossing 06/05/15 and returning 06/05/15.

** Terms & Conditions apply, subject to availability, valid for sailings 08:00 – 09:59 and 16:00 – 17:59. Price based on outward journey crossing 06/05/15 returning between 08/05/15 and 10/05/15.

Island

Day Return: Car + 7 passengers from £43.75* Short Breaks (2-4 nights): Car + 7 passengers from £54.25**

*Terms & Conditions apply, subject to availability, valid for sailings 08:00 – 09:59 and 16:00 – 17:59. Price based on outward journey crossing 06/05/15 and returning 06/05/15.

** Terms & Conditions apply, subject to availability, valid for sailings 08:00 – 09:59 and 16:00 – 17:59. Price based on outward journey crossing 06/05/15 returning between 08/05/15 and 10/05/15. 

Book Early, Be Flexible, Save Money

More information can be found at www.wightlink.co.uk

Free Event – Go Wild on the Duver – Isle of Wight BIOBLITZ 2015

10am – 4pm, Thursday 28th May, St Helen’s Duver, St Helens

Do you care about wildlife and nature? If so, there will be a perfect opportunity this half term for nature lovers of all ages to turn wildlife detective. Come and help experts from the Isle of Wight Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Partnership and the National Trust track down and record wildlife around the woods, beaches and shoreline of St Helen’s Duver.

Go Wild on the Duver is a free family event looking at the Island’s wildlife both during the day and at night. The Isle of Wight Bioblitz is organised by the Isle of Wight Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Partnership in co-operation with the Biodiversity Action Plan Partnership (BAP) and the National Trust.

The aim of the Go wild on the Duver Bioblitz is to record as many species as possible on St Helen’s Duver. This year there will be the chance to search sandy beaches, rock pools, sand dunes, and coastal woods for birds, plants and insects like little egrets, thrift, mining bees, sea anemones, shrimps and blennies.

St Helen’s Duver will be buzzing with great wildlife activities taking place throughout the day including: art activities, wildflower and wildlife walks, bug hunts, moth trapping, bird ringing as well as numerous other activities for the public between 10am and 4pm. There will even be on expert led bat spotting expedition during the evening.

No experience is needed and people of all ages are welcome to come along and help the experts look for the plants and animals that make this area so special.

Children will also have the change to tick off some activities in the National Trust’s ‘50 Things to do before you’re 11 ¾ Challenge’, such as finding crazy creatures in a rock pool and catching a crab.

The National Trust’s Head Ranger Robin Lang, says: “We know that people care passionately about nature and wildlife – TV programmes like Countryfile, Spring and Autumn Watch are proof that more people than ever before are interested in the natural environment. In order to protect the precious coastal wildlife that we have on the Island, we need to update our records on every different species, and we’d love as many people as possible to help us. Nature and wildlife lovers of all ages are welcome.”

2015 is a special year for the National Trust on the Island. It is 50 years since the Trust launched Neptune, a national campaign to save some of the country’s most beautiful stretches of coastline. As a result the campaign saved 775 miles of coastline which will now be protected forever, including 17 miles of the finest coastline on the Island including the Tennyson Down, Compton and Brook Bay. This year, the Trust on the Island is holding a wide programme of event and activities to celebrate the Coast

For the latest event updates and activities timetable visit: http://wightaonb.org.uk/events/go-wild-on-the-duver-a-free-family-day-wildlife-event/

Or watch our short teaser video about this year’s Bioblitz: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jUXLuT27MVw

ENDS

Notes for editors

For further information, photos or logos please contact Joel Bateman (AONB Communication and Project Officer) 01983 823855 (joel.bateman@iow.gov.uk).

The Isle of Wight Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) is one of the finest landscapes in the country.  It was designated in 1963 and covers approximately half of the Island (191 km2).  The Isle of Wight AONB incorporates a rich variety of distinctive landscapes and is often likened to lowland England in miniature. The purpose of designation is the conservation and enhancement of natural beauty. More information – call 01983 823855 or visit www.wightaonb.org.uk

The Isle of Wight AONB Partnership oversees the management of the AONB.  It is an independent organisation made up of key stakeholders with a direct management role or interest in the AONB.  This is jointly funded by DEFRA and the Isle of Wight Council.

 

On The Water 2015

The Isle of Wight branch of the British Marine Federation will be hosting its On the Water event at Cowes Yacht Haven on Friday, 29th May.

Alongside display of Island-built boats including Red Funnel’s Red Jet 3, there will be opportunities to get out onto the water on either a high-speed RIB or in one of the UKSA’s ‘Try Sail’ keelboat fleet.

On land there will be a number of displays and an opportunity to find out more about the British Marine Federation. Activity will be between 10am and 4pm and the whole event is completely free of charge.

The BMF is the trade association for the British boating industry. The Federation’s 1,500 members account for a substantial amount of the industry’s turnover and employ around 30,000 people. They are drawn from both the seagoing and inland sectors of the marine industry covering the leisure boat, hire fleet, commercial workboat and superyacht categories and supporting services.

The BMF Mission Statement reads as follows:

‘We will create, develop and maintain high quality services, benefits and commercial activities to promote our industry and its products and work with our members to achieve profitable growth in home and overseas markets.’

For more information about the BMF on the Isle of Wight please visit www.bmfiw.org

Ends

For more information please contact:

Chris Clayton, Chairman BMF IW chris@seawardboat.com

Jon Pridham, Deputy Chairman BMF IW jon@cowesyachthaven.com

Tim Addison, Secretary BMF IW tim@solent.co

Start your 50 things challenge on the Island this May half-term Launch weekend 24/25 May

There’s nothing quite like fresh air, exercise and being outdoors together as a family to create memories that will last lifetime.  But a recent report into childhood in Britain today revealed that time spent by children playing outdoors has halved in a generation.

The National Trust responded by launching its ‘50 things to do before you’re 11¾’ challenge, a list of 50 adventures designed to encourage children to play outdoors and enjoy all the simple pleasures that Mother Nature has to offer.

This year the National Trust on the Isle of Wight launches its 50 things challenge for 2015 with a whole week of activities during the May half-term at different locations around the Island, starting at Mottistone Gardens on Sunday 24 and Monday 25 May.

Each day throughout the week different activities are on offer at National Trust places, making the most of the natural surroundings, from den-building and geocaching at Mottistone Gardens, making and flying your own kite at The Needles Old Battery and catching a crab and skimming a stone at some of the best beaches on the Island.

“The Island is one big adventure playground for children and many of the best things to do are the simplest, like climbing a tree, hunting for bugs and jumping over waves,” says National Trust ranger Robin Lang.  “Sometimes children need a bit of encouragement to get them started, which is where the 50 things challenge comes in.”

You can pick up a scrapbook at National Trust places, register online (www.fiftythings.org.uk) for more rewards and ideas, and download a wall planner from the National Trust website, showing which places on the Island are best for 39 of the 50 things challenge.

2015 is a special year for the National Trust on the Island.  “It’s 50 years since we launched Neptune, a national campaign to save some of the country’s most beautiful stretches of coastline“ says General Manager Tony Tutton.  “The campaign saved 775 miles of coastline which will now be protected forever, including 17 miles of the finest coastline on the Island such as Tennyson Down, Compton and Brook Bay and Bembridge and Culver Downs.”

This year is also the 50th anniversary of Mottistone Gardens coming to the National Trust, so visitors can also look around the Manor on Sunday 24 May (NT members only) and Monday 25 May.

To celebrate the National Trust’s special year on the Island, the Needles Old Battery will be open for free on 12July, and there is a unique opportunity to spend a night under the stars camping at Newtown Nature Reserve on Saturday 18July.  Booking essential.

There are so many places to see and things to do with the National Trust on the Isle of Wight this summer, starting with May half-term

National Trust’s 50 things May half-term programme

Mottistone Gardens: 50 Things launch

Sun 24 & Mon 25 May 10.30am-4pm

Pick up a scrapbook and start your 50 things challenge here.  Adults can join in too! Make a trail with sticks, build a den, find a geocache, plant it, grow it, eat it.

Normal admission charges apply. NT members free.

Bembridge Windmill: Bugs & insects ID Trail

Sat 23 May-Sun 31 May 10.30am-4.30pm

Make the most of your visit to the windmill and learn about bugs and insects with our free

family ID trail.  Tracker packs available.

Normal admission charges apply. NT members free.

The Needles Old Battery: Let’s go fly a kite

Tues 26 May – Fri 29 May 11am-3pm

It’s nearly always windy at the Old Battery, so it’s the perfect place to make your own kite and fly it. Kite kits £1.50 each.

Normal admission charges apply. NT members free.

Compton beach: 50 things by the sea

Tues 26 May 11am-1pm & 2-3.30pm

Outdoor nature activities for children by the sea. Check out crazy creatures in a rock pool, catch a crab, skim a stone, jump over waves and hunt for fossils and bones

Newtown Nature Reserve: 50 things by the sea

Wed 27 May 11am-1pm & 2-3.30pm

Outdoor nature activities for the children by the sea. Make a mud pie, catch a crab and go bird watching.

St Helens Duver: BioBlitz

Thurs 28 May, 10am –4pm

Together with Isle of Wight AONB (Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty), the National Trust is holding an exciting Bioblitz to record coastal wildlife on the shore and beaches around St Helen’s Duver. You are invited to help and join in with the fun. All discoveries will be recorded and then submitted to the local wildlife record centre to help understand how wildlife along the coast is changing and how best to protect it.

For more information call the National Trust Isle of Wight office on 01983 741020

St Catherine’s Point: 50 things by the sea

Fri 29 May 11am-1pm & 2-3.30pm

Outdoor nature activities for the children by the sea. Catch a crab, skim a stone, hunt for fossils and bones and go bird watching

For further information and booking please call the National Trust estate office at Mottistone on 01983 741020

 

ENDS

Press contacts:                       Joanna Crosse

Regional communications consultant

joanna.crosse@nationaltrust.org.uk

Tel:  07766 206050

Kathryn Wilson

Isle of Wight estate office

Kathryn.wilson@nationaltrust.org.uk

Tel:   01983 741020

 

 

Notes to editors

 

You are welcome to send a photographer to the 50 things launch at Mottistone Gardens on 24 or 25 May, 10.30am-4pm.

 

Images

You can download a selection of images via this link:

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/lyclp4k4mk1orml/AACmvcC9O6gU1X6GY3eUBQU5a?dl=0

 

Please credit any that you use – © National Trust Images

An invitation to visit the Isle of Wight on a new PURE WIGHT experience (subject to availability)

Visit Isle of Wight has joined forces with several outdoor activity providers to create an adventure-packed “Pure Wight” experience for 2015.

To help promote this we would like to challenge you to experience four of the key “Pure Wight” activities on a short break to the Isle of Wight.

Create your own weekend of adventure from the following:

  • Kayaking around Freshwater Bay
  • Mountain Boarding on Tennyson Down
  • A Segway ride around St Helens
  • Tree Climbing Experience at Appley Park
  • A Rib Ride out to The Needles Rocks
  • An “Arrive and Drive” race session at Wight Karting’s circuit
  • Half-day mountain bike excursion on a route of your choosing
  • Coasteering experience along the cliffs at Freshwater and into the caves at Watcombe Bay
  • Stand Up Paddleboard Yoga session at Bembridge Harbour

You will then travel to the Isle of Wight on a Friday evening (ferry crossing included) to a meet and greet with Visit Isle of Wight, who will give you your weekend itinerary.

  • Friday you will stay overnight at a B&B/hotel close to your first activity
  • Saturday you will complete 3 activities
  • Saturday evening meal arranged by Visit Isle of Wight
  • Overnight stay at a B&B/hotel close to your final activity
  • Sunday you will complete your final activity

If you are planning on visiting without a car transfers will be arranged between activities and accommodation – alternatively bike hire will be made available, and activity locations can be moved to suit.

Later in 2015 a “Pure Wight” challenge will be launched, inviting outdoor pursuit enthusiasts to tackle 10 adrenaline activities in just three days (Friday to Sunday.)  These activities will be a Rib Ride, Kayaking, Go Karting, Tree Climbing, Coasteering, Mountain Boarding, a Segway Ride, Mountain Biking, Zorbing and Paragliding.  Visit Isle of Wight can arrange an exclusive preview of this challenge on request (subject to availability.)

To book your visit

Please contact Ian Weightman at ian.iwms@virgin.net

PURE WIGHT BRAND SHINES A LIGHT ON THE ISLAND’S OUTDOOR ADVENTURES AND CHALLENGE EVENTS

This May, the Isle of Wight will become the UK’s outdoor playground as walkers, cyclists and runners are put through their paces at a range of “Pure Wight”, adrenalin-fuelled events including The Isle of Wight Challenge (2/3 May), The Isle of Wight Randonee (3 May), Walk the Wight (10 May) – and the Pearl Izumi Tour Series cycle race (14th May).

 

The Island’s landscape is incredibly diverse.   It ranges from steep chalk downs and ancient woodland to lush green fields and dramatic coastline offering many recreation facilities for walking, cycling, horse riding, golfing, sailing, surfing and windsurfing.    Cycling and walking are particularly popular due to the miles of cycle routes along former railway lines and well-maintained footpaths.

 

But the Island also offers a range of adrenaline-fuelled experiences like stand-up paddle-boarding, kite-surfing and rock climbing which provide a fantastic chance to see parts of the coastline and landscape that are not accessible by more pedestrian means.

 

This May is a particularly massive month for outdoor events on the Island and VIOW is using the new Pure Wight brand – and mainstream events like the Pearl Izumi Tour Series – to highlight the Island’s suitability as an exciting, outdoor adventure holiday destination.

 

David Thornton, CEO, Visit Isle of Wight, said: “The outdoor activity sector accounts for 20% of the total visitors in the Isle of Wight , and with the potential to stay longer, and get involved in more activities, these travellers are a priority audience for Visit Isle of Wight.

 

“The Pure Wight brand will help us to appeal to extreme sport devotees and those looking for an action-packed holiday experience”.

 

For more information about what there is to see and do on the Isle of Wight, go to www.visitisleofwight.co.uk

 

ENDS

 

For further information, please contact: Sue Emmerson, Press Officer, Tel: 01983 201048, 07766 705672, E-mail: sue@visitwight.org

 

Image attached of people enjoying Stand-up paddleboarding at The Needles, Isle of Wight.

 

Working in partnership with Visit England, Visit Isle of Wight Ltd (VIOW) is responsible for developing tourism and attracting more visitors to the Isle of Wight.   As well as the consumer website (www.visitisleofwight.co.uk) the DMO also operates a small industry website containing recent research and tourism news along with links to Visit England reports and opportunities: www.visitwight.org