5 November 2020

While COVID-19 is still having an impact on UK tourism, there is plenty of positive news to be found too. We’ll do our best to keep you updated, via various means, about some of the best examples of how tourism businesses in the destinations we represent are rising to the challenge.

Jane Austen’s House from Home

Jane Austen’s House, in Hampshire, has launched a suite of online experiences that bring their treasures directly into the homes of fans across the globe. ‘Jane Austen’s House from Home’ allows visitors to explore the property virtually for the first time, via a 360° tour. There is a similar Cat’s Eye Audio Tour, allowing little ones to explore Jane Austen’s Garden under the guidance of the Museum cat. Two more virtual exhibitions are also included in the suite. https://bit.ly/2TdGfqK

Stately festive treat

Christmas will come early for those looking for a festive treat when one of England’s greatest Elizabethan houses plays host to seasonal spectacle – but this year, it’s gone online. Burghley Christmas Fine Food Market, due 26-29 November, has been cancelled because of lockdown rules, but instead, the Burghley Online Christmas Fair will run 1–18 December featuring more than 80 independent businesses available from the comfort of your own home. https://bit.ly/31LKMW6

Eye-catching plans for Derby city centre are revealed

Derby has revealed major plans for re-landscaping the site of the former Assembly Rooms, once it has been demolished. These include pop-up markets and outdoor events, while longer term redevelopment plans are progressed. Derby’s Assembly Rooms were closed to the public in 2014 following a fire. Plans following its demolition would include food and drink stalls with seating areas, entertainment spaces and car parking. https://bit.ly/37zO3LU

Online appeal for Lincolnshire’s seal spectacle

Each autumn and winter, Donna Nook National Nature Reserve offers one of the UK’s most accessible places to experience the wildlife spectacle of the birthing of grey seal pups. Sadly, this year, due to lockdown, Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust has had to close the viewing area – but you can still check the weekly pup update online. A special seal appeal has also been set-up, to help the charity continue to protect the seals and their important habitat. https://bit.ly/3mi4ArU

“Sizzling Sausages”: here’s some top tips to finding the best of British bangers!

While this year’s UK Sausage Week had to be cancelled due to Covid-19, organisers are promising it will be back with a ‘BANGer’ in 2021. But for those still eager to celebrate the Great British Banger, there are plenty of ways to savour some seriously super sausages up and down the country. https://bit.ly/3m9CfUx

Popular Staffordshire garden offers online seed saving and propagation course

With visits to gardens on the rise, and gardening itself more popular than ever, Dorothy Clive Gardens in Staffordshire will be hosting three online sessions on ‘Seed Saving and Propagation’ under the tutorship of Head Gardener Zdenek Valkoun-Walker. The dates for the three Zoom sessions are November 3, 10 and 17; and the cost of the course is £20. https://bit.ly/3mkBo3L

Hidden Gardens, with secret surprises

A new movie adaptation of children’s book The Secret Garden has hit cinema and TV screens. A firm family favourite, this fourth movie version of Frances Hodgson Burnett’s story will raise the profile of garden gems – especially those offering visitors a hidden ‘surprise’. So here’s a round-up of a some of the UK’s top ‘secret gardens’ that are well-worth exploring. https://bit.ly/2HCdgKK