Reports - Events & Days Out 2017

Staffordshire Country Link - Review of 2017

Staffordshire Country Link thought it was about time we provided an update of our events during the past year. Winning the cup for the most new members was a pleasant surprise. Although not competitive it was good for Staffordshire to receive recognition for all our efforts as we are always keen to encourage new members.

We have a 3 programme planning meetings each year. Members are encouraged to attend and/or organise and/or suggest/request events. The Staffordshire Country Link Programmes is members led with 3-4 events per month. Each month tends to feature a walk, at least one meal (and most events include the option for eating!) and an item of “culture”. Meals are the most popular events. Some events are arranged with neighbouring Cheshire Country Link. Members are empowered and encouraged to arrange events and to participate. Optional background support when arranging an event is available and those who do arrange events do a great job, admit the confidence boost is amazing and go on to arrange more! Obviously members are encouraged to attend events however there is no pressure to do so recognising other commitments and unexpected life changes, and in addition not every event appeals to everyone. Our aim is to be an informal, friendly and caring social group with plenty of laughter and banter. If we don't see or have any contact from a member for a while, one of the group will make contact to check they are ok. Many Staffordshire members also attend other clubs' events, and the National Weekends away resulting in an amazing network of friends and experiences around the country. Some of you may have met members Tony, Ian and Phil affectionately known as” The Three Musketeers”, their social appetites and travel distances know no bounds!

Staffordshire is a diverse county bordered by The River Dove to the East and the town Uttoxeter with its racecourse; the Trent Valley and its flat farmland; the cities of Lichfield and Stoke on Trent, a variety of market towns, the White Peak area bordering the Peak District, The Roaches and hilly terrain of The Moorlands with the towns of Leek, Biddulph and Cheadle extending down to The Rock Houses (we visited a few years ago) located on a little leg of Staffordshire running to the south of Wolverhampton and bordering Worcestershire. An abundance of beautiful countryside, areas steeped in history including numerous castles e.g. at Stafford, Chartley and Tutbury; the pottery industry, the National Arboretum, Uttoxeter Racecourse, Alton Towers and the home of JCB. With a wide variety of places to eat to suit all tastes and pockets there is plenty of choice when programme planning. Stafford County Show in May is an annual event and it has become a Staffordshire Country Link tradition to meet at 3pm for tea in The Young Farmers Pavilion. A chance for some to relive their days in Young Farmers and of course an opportunity to recruit new members (the parents/relatives/friends of current Young Farmers!!) Other events this year have included visits to a Windmill and Vintage Tractor Show; a joint visit with Cheshire Country Link to The Salt Museum near Northwich in Cheshire,

Shugborough EstateAlthough the county of Staffordshire is land locked there is still plenty of water around and a "watery" theme has emerged on our walks this year. Rudyard Lake (joint meeting with Cheshire Country Link), Tittesworth Water, and Shugborough Estate and Pakland. The latter was one of our autumn walks along canal towpaths and rivers, crossing The Essex Bridge (the longest remaining packhorse bridge in England and reputedly built for Elizabeth 1 by The Earl of Essex so she could visit nearby Chartley Castle) and onto The Shugborough estate and parkland with its herd of Longhorn cattle (see photographs taken by Terry) now owned by The National Trust. It was the perfect autumn day sunny, bright and crisp with beautiful splashes of colour from the leaves on the trees and plenty more to crunch underfoot. Terry's reward as the nominated photographer was the sight of a kingfisher by the canal unfortunately too quick for his camera and missed by the rest of us who were too noisy engrossed in banter and laughter!

shug2.jpgOccasionally our walks have been wet underfoot especially on the 3rd December. Although we took the very good advice to wear wellies, unfortunately Phil discovered his left welly had sprung a leak and it was at the walk's wettest spot! Phil organised a walk was from Stone “The Canal Town” calling in for refreshments at” Oatcakes and Milkshakes” recognising the dairy industry and Staffordshire's heritage. The watery theme continued however this time swimming instead of walking with a trip to “Waterworld “(joint with Cheshire Country Link) and a couple of entertaining stories! We managed a few non watery walks too including a revisit to Oakamoor close by Alton Towers. Oakmoor amongst other things is famous for The Chained Oak with its legend and curse. We walked along the disused railway line up into the hills in beautiful sunshine and returned for welcome refreshments at The Ramblers Retreat – also famous but this time for the selection of Staffordshire oatcakes and lemon meringue pie! From The Roaches we travelled up into “White Peak” and completed a circular walk from Wetton with magnificent views across The Manifold Valley and into Derbyshire. We have ventured into Derbyshire's Peak District on one occasion: to Monyash and the hidden limestone valley. We have walked on Cannock Chase a vast area, Country Link has visited many times before, this time passing the War Cemeteries and the Glacial Boulder (which to some was surprisingly small!). Our final walk of the year is just over a week after our Christmas Meal on December 22nd and offers a chance for escape and a catch up before 2018. Billed as “George's Festive Walk” – last year he managed to arrange bright winter sunshine and a herd of red deer! No pressure for this year George!!! We hope the weather will be kind to us although in the festive spirit, just the briefest of snow flurries would be acceptable!

Staffordshire Country Link would like to take the opportunity to send Very Best Wishes for the Festive Season and for 2018 to all our friends throughout Country Link. We look forward to meeting up in 2018 and if you're ever in the Staffordshire area please contact us if you would like to come along to one of our events, we'd love to see you and guarantee a friendly welcome!

Derbyshire Country link Christmas dinner and dance

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Once again the Boars head Hotel at Sudbury welcomed us for the Christmas party where 20 of us were wined and dined in splendid style and danced 'til midnight.

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Wonderful evening with friends.

Cornwall Country Link

Members of Cornwall CL visited Pengelly's Garden Centre near St Austell to learn to make wreaths and table centres.

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Sarah the owner provided her expertise and also coffee and huge chunks of cake.

This is an annual event that we all look forward to.

Merry Christmas from Martin and Valda.

Essex & Suffolk Xmas meal

We had a grand Xmas meal at Eight Ash Green village pub 24 of us all on one long table. Thanks to Ian for arranging it.

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Cornwall Christmas Party

We had our Christmas party on Friday at the Carlyon Golf club at St Austell. This very successful event was organised by Ann, Eve and Elaine, many thanks to them for an enjoyable evening.

We had three different games during the evening to raise money for charity.

Next morning the members who stayed at the hotel went on a brisk walk to blow the cobwebs away.
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Cornwall Country Link

Cornwall Country Link continue to enjoy eating and walking on Sundays. This week we had brunch at Cornwall Gold Centre served on mining shovels, then a walk along the tramway and through the woods in the Portreath area. The day was rounded off with tea and cakes in a “vintage” tea rooms that also provided opportunities for Christmas shopping! All in all a good time was had by all.

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Cornwall Country Link

A large group of our members joined myself and Valda for a Sunday lunch at the interesting venue called the Croust Hut.

It is located at the King Edward mining museum near Camborne. We were treated to a very pleasant meal.

The area is rich in mining heritage and strewn with relics of an era long gone.

My walk included pump houses, stamp mills, Celtic funeral mounds and ancient paths. We had fine views across St Ives bay and a strong fresh wind to blow those cobwebs away.

25 members enjoyed the meal and 21 took on the walk.

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Derbyshire Country link 5th Birthday Party

Derbyshire members and friends gathered at Herbert's Tea room Tissington for coffee and a chat before putting our boots on to follow Phil, our leader for the day, on a 6 mile circular walk to Dove dale and the stepping stones.

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The weather was on our side and Thorpe cloud was easily visible as we walked to Dovedale. After a cup of tea and a loo stop we were off on our return trip back to the Tearoom for afternoon tea.


A lovely day celebrating with new friends.

Thank you Phil for our great day.

A walk on the wild side on the Roaches

image001.jpgThe walk started on the road side where we met, Will and Danny from Cheshire and most important Lyn our leader, who had mapped a 6 mile circular route up and down dale on the Roaches.

Taking in the local history of the chapel, a narrow step decline in some rocks.


We stopped for a snack and a well earnt rest before return for home via the ice cream van.

The views were incredible into the distances of Cheshire and beyond.


The day finished in the local pub with refreshment all round.

Cornwall Country Link

IMG_4628.JPGWith the help of Steve, one of our longest standing members, we were able to explore the Greek area of our county.

After a tasty Sunday roast at the Black Swan we put on our waterproofs and took to the drover lanes the crisscross our farmland.

The views are always different when going off the beaten track.

We returned to the Black Swan and had a cup of tea.

Looking forward to our next walk which is mine in the mining area of Camborne.

Fish and Chips supper

IMG_4627.JPGWe are lucky to have a huge range of cafes and restaurants in our local area.

On Friday night we visited the coastal village of Porthreath and enjoyed a good traditional meal of fish and chips at the Atlantic Cafe.

13 members attended including a newbie.

We have 41 events planned for the next three months and that makes us a very busy group.

Cornwall Country Link

It was my time to host another Sunday afternoon event. This time we visited Newquay's hidden gem! The Fern Pit Cafe.

This lovely old fashioned and honest cafe is poised over the top of the Gannel Estuary overlooking Crantock beach. It is as good as it sounds.

After a good lunch, fresh crab was especially wonderful, we went onto Trenance gardens in Newquay.

A gentle stroll through the gardens found us at the crazy golf course and an impromptu golf tournament took place. Linda beat us all easily.

Tea and cake finished off a nice event.

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Cornwall Country Link

We put our walking boots on again today and took a four mile hike around the village of Lanner near to Redruth.

We had a nice Sunday lunch in the local pub and then set out on the walk.

Lanner runs down through a valley going towards Falmouth and on both sides of the valley are two hills. We marched up the first hill which had a large amount of mining on its flanks and the remains of the industry can be seen hiding in the bracken and gorse.

We then traversed across onto the second hill and again visited historical remains and a quarry that is now a performance centre.

The views we saw were stunning on a clear fine Autumn day and the small group enjoyed their day.

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We have many more events planned and the new programme will come out in the next few days.

Rod Stewart in Tutbury

image002.jpgimage001.jpgRod Stewart has returned to Tutbury and the troops were gathered from far and wide to enjoy the evening.

Rod had several dress changes and played all the hits for us to dance to.



Tutbury Village Flower and Vegetable Show

Maria Pat and Phil have just taken part in the various classes at the local show. Tomatoes, potatoes, beans, peas etc and the flower arranging, 'Fifty years of Gardening World'. Dahlias large and small. Maria won the flower arranging and Phil won best flower display in show and best tomatoes in show, a lovely day.

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Ayrshire members recently met up with friends from other clubs for grand days out.

Robin and Caroline from Shropshire brought the sunshine with them on a recent visit to Ayrshire . After the vintage tractor run from Dumfries House at Auchinleck , some of us met up and enjoyed some tea and cake despite the presence of the Scottish midge!


It was a bit of a wet start to the joint meeting between Ayrshire CountryLink members and our friends from Cumbria . We met up at the Galloway Country Fair at Drumlanrig Castle in Dumfriesshire on a wet Saturday in August . Between the showers we all enjoyed our walk around the stands and marquees , and the doughnut and coffee stand was a welcomed stopping point mid-afternoon!


To finish off our grand day out , the 9 Cumbrians and 9 Scots enjoyed a lovely meal in Thornhill at the Buccleuch and Queensberry Arms Hotel. Thanks to Gill for organising everything.


Cumbria and Ayrshire Countrylink

Cumbria and Ayrshire Country link had a joint day out at Galloway Country Fair at Drumlanrig Castle on Saturday 19th August


Shropshire Country Link - 30th Anniversary Dinner and Dance

image001.jpg2017 sees the 30th anniversary of Shropshire Country Link, and Robyn and Caroline decided to celebrate in style by organising a Dinner and Dance at the Buckatree Hotel, the hotel where the Shropshire Weekend was held in spring 2015.

There were 93 attendees at the event, including present and past members, who it was great to catch up with. There were members from Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Oxfordshire, Shropshire, Staffordshire and the new Northamptonshire group.

Following a lovely three course meal, Richard, the Shropshire organiser, spoke about the club, past, present and future. Guests then danced the night away – the dj remembered us from 2015, and didn't disappoint with the music he played, some his own choice and some by request.

Some of us had chosen to stay over, and enjoyed a hearty breakfast on Sunday morning before walking up the Wrekin taking in the views and some fresh air before the decent to the Half way cafe.

Somewhere on the Sunday I lost my camera so no pictures of the lovely evening spent with Shropshire country link and friends. If anyone has the contact number for the cafe, that would be great as I used the camera a lot for country link.
e-mail Thank you.

On behalf of those who attended, many thanks to Robyn and Caroline for organising a great evening!

July with Derbyshire country link

A sunny Wednesday evening at the Vernon's Arms Sudbury, where we played drafts, dominoes, skittles and jenga and yes it all fell down, lovely evening.

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The annual bike took place on Sunday at Rutland water 18 miles all the way round. Another sunny windless day and after coffee in the car park, and the loo stop.


image004.jpgLined up on the start line, led out by those training for the Nottingham to skeggy bike ride taking place later in the month.

Lunch was at the Horse and Jockey pub at Manton where we were joined by Marcus and Pat. All caught up and refreshed.

7 miles to home, bikes put away, it's time for tea and ice cream.

Great day with fellow country linkers.

image006.jpg image005.jpgAs part of the 14-18NOWthe UK,s arts programme for the First World War Centenary Programme.

The Derby Silk Mill ,was home too, two business during the war one making medical supplies and grinding corn,both crucial to the war effort. The mill has hosted the Weeping poppy window,for a month which has travelled from the Tower of London,and is moving on 24 July,some 5000 poppies!!

Carsington Reservoir in August

Derbyshire Country Link have a day out around the water.

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Some of us on bikes went anti clockwise while the walkers went clockwise all


to meet at the Miners Arms for drinks.

There were one or two hiccups on the way, poorly bike for Peter and Pat just avoiding a very fast motor bike which could have been very messy.

After regrouping we left the pub to return to the car park at Carsington.

All quiet straight forward on the way home, bikes put away.

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Andrew found a table, picnics at the ready and a few games of dominoes and connect 4, very competitive for a Sunday afternoon.

Lovely time.

Cornwall Country Link

We continue to have fun in Cornwall. On Friday a group of us enjoyed an evening of food and immersive theatre at the amazing Lost Gardens of Heligan, with theatre provided by the very talented Rogue theatre.

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On Sunday more than 20 of us were at a great barbecue hosted by Roy. It was a great event!

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Cornwall Country Link

FullSizeRender.jpgWe had a smashing meal last night at Stavros Restaurant in Falmouth. The event was put on by our very active member Lin and we had 21 members attend.

The Stavros staff were delighted to have us and they did a brilliant job. We took the advantage of mutual promotion and we appear on their Facebook page with our advertising leaflet dominant.

I'm sure it will be a regular venue for meals out.

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Out and About in Scotland

image001.jpgimage002.jpgOur newest Country Link banners were on display at the Ayrshire Vintage Tractor Rally in Ayr at the weekend. We had a little display table with our flyers and a "treasure" map inviting visitors to guess " Whaur did the wee Davy Broon break doon?" ! Hopefully we will gain some new members soon from those who met us, and a couple of offers of winter talks are in the pipeline. Thanks to Kirsteen for organising that.

It was a lovely sunny day, and Drew, Muir, Gavin and Wullie all had tractors on display. Jimmy was stewarding, Enna was busy making pancakes, Sally was on the SAC stand and Carolyn, Robert, Liz, Margaret, Matt, Andrew and Margaret S all took turns on the Country Link stand.

We have had a busy summer, visiting Portencross Castle, Wee Hae Meet butchery, Boswell Coach House and walk, and a day at the Royal Highland Show. With a BBQ, a cruise to Campbelton, a visit along with Cumbria CL to Drumlanrig Country Fair and a tour of Glasgow University still to come before we start our autumn programme, we have much to look forward to in the next few weeks.

Cornwall Country Link

IMG_4479.JPGWe are certainly a busy club, we have a full schedule of events and try to do as many things as possible.

We tried this interesting venue for a Sunday brunch today. Followed by a fantastic walk over this ancient part of Cornwall near to Penzance.

By happy chance we came across the Green Pig Farm tearoom and found time to have huge portions of cake washed down with tea. This tearoom set in a beautiful garden has stunning views of St Michaels Mount.

Never a dull moment in Cornwall.

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Cornwall Country Link

IMG_4461.JPGIMG_4464.JPGAt the weekend our village has a popular scarecrow competition. We entered and was delighted to be chosen the best in the village. The theme was pantomime characters.

We opened our garden for a picnic and invited our members to join us and take part.

IMG_4460.JPGWe also had our banner prominently positioned and we received two enquiries from prospective members.

Essex and Suffolk group out and about in the sun

Visited the Gardens of the former home of Rab Butler, Spencer's, at Little Yeldham on Thursday afternoon amid glorious sunshine. The house is set in 100 acres in North Essex. Red Poll cattle graze the front paddock as part of an HLS Scheme.

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The walled garden is crammed full of English country garden flowers and has one of the oldest and largest Wisterias in England. There are vegetables and a clover lawn, surrounded by a pear tree espalier. We were given an enlightening talk by the current owner on the history and then taken on the woodland walk and back to the old stables for a welcome tea and cakes.


Cornwall Country Link

This group enjoyed an excellent Sunday lunch and then a nice walk organised by our member Roy.

We started the walk in St Mawgan and then across an attractive area of countryside ending up on the beach at Mawgan Porth.

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Cornwall Country Link

Our club go to regular dance events. It could be salsa, country dancing and jive.

Last night we attended a local charity event, a classic barn dance in a proper barn including a BBQ.

A popular band with callers provided the entertainment and a good number of locals danced the night away.

We were taught tricky dances and had good fun.

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Cornwall Country Link

IMG_4437.JPGOur member Lorna organised a nice Sunday lunch at Porth Newquay and then a strenuous walk of about 4 miles around the local countryside and then across the cliffs from Watergate Bay providing us with special views of the Atlantic coastline.

IMG_4436.JPGThe group returned to the pub for tea and puddings.

We had a new member join us today and she had a really nice time and it was the perfect event for her to start her Country Link activities.

Cornwall Country Link

IMG_4428.JPGToday was the first opportunity for us to use our table top display!

We had a very nice lunch with 16 members of our club at Penrose Kitchen Shortlanesend near Truro followed by a strenuous 4 mile walk through the surrounding countryside only to find our way back to the restaurant for tea and cake. It's funny how many walks end up back at the same place for tea!

The weather was kind to us and stayed dry and the exercise did some of us some good.

Derbyshire visit Tissington Well Dressing

image001.jpgWe started our day with coffee at the Ashbourne bike hire, after asking if we could put a new banner up on the car park gate, which was great and easy to tie on.

On our way with chat about Newquay and the darts team, we arrived at Tissington, for lunch in the officially tea room for the Well dressings, where tea, very hot mustard and ham sandwiches were eaten and cake, all very good. Leaflets left in the tearoom.

We then took a walk around the well dressings, and a video on how they are made.

Firstly the clay is taken from the verges in the village and mixed with a lot of water and puddled in, with you in your welly, until it has a consistence of butter. This is then placed on the wooden boards which have been soaked in the village pond for weeks to absorb water, theses boards has flat headed nails on to the clay in place.

image002.jpgThe boards are laid out in sheds in the village where separate teams work on the displays, the design is pricked out and marked out with coffee beans and the petals and stones are arranged on the boards with fall going down, so the rain will run off, and not pull the petals off. Once finished the boards are placed in their traditional positions by tractors and people power. On Thursday morning there is a church service and a walk around the village to bless the well dressing.

Tissington must be very proud.

All this was fascinating and the results were amazing.

See the gallery images >

Derbyshire country link’s adventure to Newquay for the spring weekend

Nine members travelled by car to the Pentire Hotel, Newquay, our home for the weekend and a lovely home it was to. Some of us arrived a day early to enjoy and extra breakfast and day exploying the area.

120 others country linkers arrived during Friday to start this full packed weekend amoungst old and new friends.

Friday night started at 7pm with a fork supper and fancy dress 1960 which was great fun, dancing until midnight.

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image007.jpgimage008.jpgSaurday morning came all of a rush as buses were off at 9am for our trips of the day. All sorted and we were away to Fentongollan, home of the brasicas of Cornwall and the daffodils. A wonderful trip, amazing quanities of products, followed by a trip on a boat from Truro to Falmonth, with a cornish pastry. There were other trips available.

Back for 5ish to put our glad rags on for a formal gala dinner and a fun casino, before dancing till midnight. Emma won the most money kept at the casino.

Sunday morning came after a more relaxed start, before the AGM which was an interesting hour, new PR equipment issued.


Off on trips by midday. After an early evening swim, before listening to Newquay male voice choir, who were great with several local ditty's was dinner, dancing, or cards or chatting amoungst friends.

image009.jpgimage011.jpgThe gentleman in the black wig is the new vice president for Country Link. Well done Phil.

Some countrylinkers stayed an extra night, visiting Cornwall, while others moved on to split the travel home visiting Wester super Mare.

Looking at the sand sculptures on the beach which have appeared for 100 years, we then moved to Gloucester to visit the Waterway museum and the canals in the area, where the tall ships were due to arrive.


Now home washing done and nearly up to date with sleep.

Thank you to Valda, Martin and team Cornwall for a lovely weekend down south.

May Bank Holiday weekend with Derbyshire Country Link

image001.jpgSaturday started with a 1980's disco, and video night at the Tutbury Club, fun and lots of dancing. Sunday spent doing jobs in the garden and the house.

image002.pngMonday came, packed lunch at the ready for our day trip to Llandudno with Phil and Terry from Bushell Coaches. Our pick up was 9am, so we were the last on so, we had the back seat. Great start and we knew Phil, the driver, from other trips. Breakfast picnic by mid-morning and coffee stop at 11am, followed by cards before reaching our destination at midday.

image003.jpgThe group spent their day visiting the machinery fields where we saw the mini bus which took the Queen Mother's staff from to A to B with the corgis in the back. This bike took a family of 5 on holiday!!

Walked back, saw the Punch and Judy show while eating an ice cream.

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Emma and Lyn walked around the great Orme and made the bus on time. Lynne and gang did fish and chips, and the fairground rides.


Once all back on the bus, all counted, we were off on the coast road to Ross on Sea, where our route was closed off and a low bridge with a height of 12.3ft was in front of us. A shout from Phil asked if I would check we can fit under it? Yes I think so and we did too!

Picnic and a glass - all is well and a cards re-match.

A day out with a difference, no driving! Lovely.


P.S: We now play in a darts team representing the Vernon Arms in Sudbury,
where we won our first match - 5 to 4. Incredible surprise.
Well done to all.


Cornwall Country Link

IMG_0268.JPG Cornwall Country Link are continuing to keep busy. In one week we saw the Oscar winning film "Moonlight", visited a local country park for a theatre performance in the woods, barn danced at the Folk and Cider fayre, and then got up early on Easter Sunday for a dawn chorus bird walk followed by breakfast!

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A week with Derbyshire country link

Starting with lovely evening at the Ceramic café, Tutbury, plates, boxes, rabbits, unicorns and bees were painted, whilst paninis, ploughmans, jacket potatoes and beverages comsumed. What fun!


image002.jpgOn Friday evening we joined Colton History Society to celebrate their 15th Anniversary. Lesley Smith gave a wonderful powerful and informative performance as Ann Boleyn. The tea was good too!

image003.jpgSaturday was a packed day for some - notably Maria, Andy and Clare who took part in the swimathon in the morning. Well done swimming 1.5pm! Then it was back home to watch the grand National and to get ready for the barn dance in the evening.

This was held at Burton Brewery centre, with the Cat Whiskers band providing the music. The Staffordshire and Cheshire country link groups joined us for a really fun and social night. With no time for sitting down were too busy dancing, an interval was much appreciated! We recharged our batteries with steak pie and refilled our glasses, then we were ready for round 2! As if we hadn't danced enough, some of us finished off the night at Tutbury Club, where The 4 Rossis,a Status Quo tribute band were rocking the night away.

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Making a star making a basket


Lovely weekend, great fun and tiring!

Cornwall Country Link

02 April 2017

Our group once again has enjoyed another sunny Sunday walk.

This time we were in the Pentewan valley just outside St Austell. We had our lunch in the Sun Valley Resort and started the walk from there. Climbing steeply up the valley side and onto the summit where we had lovely 360 degree view of this part of Cornwall. We crossed dandelion covered pastures with yellow primroses in the hedgerows into deep sided drover's lanes. Walking down lanes with rushing streams at their sides.

Returning to Sun Valley we used a walk along the White river and had our reward of steaming cups of tea back at the restaurant.

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National country link Committee, on their lunch break at the spring meeting


Derbyshire country link meet the Beatles

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Tutbury came alive to the sounds and the sights of the 60's, with the Beatles, all the hits and dancing all night.

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The photographs says everything, professional and fantastic.

Great night for everyone.

Cornwall Country Link

Cornwall Country Link enjoying a great night out at Chiquitos Mexican restaurant. Nice to see some new faces as well as regulars. Slight mixup with the booking! But staff surpassed themselves to put it right.

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Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire Country Link

image002.jpg image004.jpgA challenging start to a joint walk with Nottinghamshire in extremely wet conditions. At 8:30am the phone starts ringing "It's raining are we still walking?" Yes we are. Country Linkers are made of strong stuff and a bit mad. After a coffee and a chat at The Lion Hotel, Belper we head off to the start the walk at Whatstandwell. We cross the foot bridge over the railway line and head down the canal tow path towards Ambergate.

image005.jpgThere we cross the A6 and walk over Penny Farthing bridge an old toll road.The Derwent and Amber rivers meet here. Up the hill through the wood onto a rough track we head back to Belper.


At the bridge over the river Derwent we look downstream and to our amazement and surprise we see two men going for a swim in the swollen raging river. They enter the water with a buoyancy aid containing their clothes tethered to their waist. The fast flowing current quickly takes them down stream and out of site. Next time Derbyshire may give it a go.

After collecting the cars from the starting point we all tuck into a hearty meal of fish and chips at George's in Belper.

Lovely day out in spite of the weather.

Cornwall Country Link

IMG_4298.JPG IMG_4296.JPG We were blessed with stunning sunshine after a week of wet weather.

Our Sunday walk was from a tiny hamlet called Trebarwith Strand just south of Tintagel.

We had our usual Sunday roast lunch followed by a strenuous walk over the cliffs tops to Tintagel. The views were spectacular and the strong wind blew the cobwebs away. It was great to get out onto this rugged and truly beautiful coastline.

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Cornwall Country Link

IMG_4289b.jpgOur members enjoyed a Chi tea party at Ann's home. A few weeks ago she did a Canadian brunch and 30+ people turned up.

This time 24 members were treated to a sumptuous spread of tea, cake and lovely treats.

Derbyshire Country link

image001.jpgThe group's annual migration to Nottinghamshire took place last with weekend with 10 of us travelling to the Premium Inn at Daybrook, Nottingham.

Early drinks were taken, and the taxi took us to Ramsdale golf club. After a 3 course dinner we danced till midnight and home in taxi.

After breakfast we travelled to Epperstone for a 4 mile walk, with a coffee stop, returned to the cross keys for lunch and more chat. Lovely 24 hours out and about with friends.

Thank you to Peter and the team.

Sponsored by JCB

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Cornwall Country Link

01.jpgTwenty two club members gathered at Pencarrow House between Wadebridge and Bodmin for the annual snowdrop Sunday.

The weather was a little against us but that didn't stop us walking around the gardens and enjoying the early spring flowers.

We also watched another spring event, many toads gathering in the lake and doing what toads do at this time of year.

The spawn was in large clumps and in a few weeks time many tadpoles will be swimming in the lake.

We then enjoyed tea and cake in the cafe. This is a charity event and was for North Cornwall Riding for the disabled.

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Derbyshire Country link

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The phone has been busy with calls and texts this morning as the snow had started to come down. Yes, Derbyshire shall walk from Carsington Reservoir, where the car park and the landscape were bleak.

Eight of us left and arrived at Hopton hall, where we walked around the garden on the nearly formed paths looking at the snowdrops, most appropriate in the snow.

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After enjoying soup and cheese scones all round we returned to Carsington Reservoir, still looking bleak.

Great to be out with friends in the snow.

Derbyshire country link

image001.jpgThe group is back in the grove, meeting up again after Christmas and New Year, Maria and Liz back from their adventures down under. Hurrah!

On Sunday the group met at the Bubble Inn, Stenson for coffee and walk down the canal path to Shardlow and returned for lunch at the Bubble, great user friendly pub, and thank you.

Wednesday we met for drinks at the Kings head at Hilton, lovely to see so many of us and some new friends too to catch up our diaries, collect new programmes and check the runners for the pig racing on Friday.

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Friday night came, and 10 of attending the annual pig racing, taking part in jockeying the pigs and betting on the outcome, there were no real winner's lovely evening had by all, apart from the pig.

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Cornwall's Canadian brunch

We have had a fantastic Canadian brunch today courtesy of Ann.

We knew the event would be popular but 28 members descended on Ann's home and a unperturbed Ann cooked and served 28 breakfasts of pancakes and bacon topped off with maple syrup and eggy bread and syrup, tea and coffee. She had the help of Eve and Elaine and this team did a magnificent job.

We then had a stroll around Charlestown harbour to work off the pancakes and maple syrup, popping into a antique emporium and back to Ann's for tea.

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Previous to this event and sorry there are no photos, I took a group of 12 members to a Redruth fish and chip shop on Friday evening. Again another successful event for our club.

We have many more interesting and varied events coming up soon including a Mexican fiesta in Truro.

Cornwall Country Link

We got the New Year off to a great start by meeting up at the Lost Gardens of Heligan who were having a charity open day. They dropped the usual admission fee and asked for a nominal donation for our local charities.

We had a good turnout of 19 members who enjoyed a light lunch and then a stroll around the gardens.

The event was well supported by the people of Cornwall but we were still able to find quiet paths and enjoy the scenery.

We returned to the cafe for tea and cake and chatting.

Thanks to Valda for arranging the day.

We have a full and exciting programme of events and 2017 will be very busy for Cornwall Country Link.

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