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Towed Town Camping launches inner-city beach huts, Bristol
Following the success of their quirky indoor caravan park, independent Bristol enterprise Towed Town Camping is launching a collection of beach huts in a warehouse. The new venture takes the seaside sleepover to urban south Bristol with a collection of cosy beach huts, ideal for parties of friends. Towed Town Camping’s original campground features five up-cycled retro caravans on fake-grass lawns with sun umbrellas and deck chairs and a games area all under one industrial warehouse roof.
Whitworth Locke aparthotel, Manchester
Acclaimed New York architects/designers Grzywinski + Pons are transforming three former cotton mill buildings into a 160-unit lifestyle aparthotel with 24-square-metre (258-square-ft) studios and one-bedroom suites. Located on the corner of Princess Street and Whitworth Street, and overlooking Rochdale Canal, Whitworth Locke will fuse the comfort and autonomy of designer residential living with the character, service and amenities of a lifestyle hotel. The finished development will celebrate the glorious past of industrial Manchester while embracing its dynamic and vibrant future.
New Village Hotel urban resort, Bristol
The Village Hotels group is opening a new urban resort in Filton, on the northern edge of Bristol. The hotel will feature a pub and restaurant, a Starbucks, Business Club facilities, a leisure centre with gym and swimming pool as well as super-comfortable rooms with flat-screen TVs and Tassimo coffee machines – all in a convenient location for Bristol’s aerospace museum, Aerospace Bristol, the home to an original Concorde (it’s worth noting that 2019 marks 50 years of Concorde).
The Amble Inn, Northumberland
Opening fully in January 2019 following a soft launch in November, The Amble Inn will be a 30-bedroom pub-with-rooms. Set at the southern tip of the Northumberland Coast Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the family- and pet-friendly inn is well located for exploring the castles that dot this stretch of coast, the wildlife-rich islands just off shore, and for joining in with the UK’s only Puffin Festival, held in Amble in May. As well as a mix of double, twin, single, family and accessible bedrooms, The Amble Inn will have a 150-seat restaurant and bar area with further seating outside. The inn is part of a wider plan to improve Amble’s tourism offer, and will be operated by award-winning leisure operators The Inn Collection Group.
Artist Residence, Bristol
Artists Residence will open another of its eclectic boutique hotels, this time in an old boot factory on Bristol’s Portland Square in late November/early December. Artist Residence already has fun, eccentric hotels in London, Brighton, Oxford and Cornwall; their arty interiors are created by artists in return for board. Room only from £120 B&B.
Maldron Hotel Newcastle
Part of the Newgate Street redevelopment, this new four-star hotel in Newcastle city centre will have 226 air-conditioned bedrooms, a bar, a restaurant, business centre facilities and be universally accessible.
New lodge hotel at Feldon Valley, Cotswolds
Come the end of December, Feldon Valley will fully launch as a destination for diners, golfers and those wishing to overnight in the Northern Cotswolds. A new bar was launched in July 2018, followed by a fine dining restaurant in September. The hotel lodges, along the edge of Feldon Valley’s golf course, are due for completion at the end of the year. The team wants to develop a reputation for perfect service in a modern, contemporary Cotswold setting.
New Yoga Retreat at Godshill Park Farm on the Isle of Wight
Godshill Park Farm on the Isle of Wight has opened up a new yoga retreat. Inside this gorgeous converted barn, boasts a yoga studio, complete with relaxing views over the farmland and their animals. Add to that some great, locally-sourced food, roaring log fires, wild local walks from the back door, some good old-fashioned hospitality - and the Island's natural healing environment - and it's easy to see why this is now being tipped to become one of the country's most popular wellness centres. Their residential retreat packages are available over a weekend, three-night, mid-week or full week retreat and begin at £265 per person, with a vast schedule of yoga and well-being retreats slated for 2019.
Belmond Cadogan Hotel, London
The luxury hotel group Belmond is backing the £28 million investment project in the prestigious Cadogan Hotel on Sloane Street, Knightsbridge. Built in 1887 in the Queen Anne style, The Cadogan was the location of Oscar Wilde's infamous arrest. The historic property is building on this rich heritage with a two-year renovation project that reduces the number of rooms and suites from 64 to 54 to accommodate the demands of luxury travellers. Due to re-open this winter. Prices TBC.
Vintry & Mercer hotel, London
Vintry & Mercer will open in the City of London’s historic Vintry Ward, a two-minute walk from Cannon Street Station. The independent hotel takes its name and inspiration from the Vintry Guild (est. 1363), which traded wines in the area, and the Mercer Guild (est. 1304), which traded fine fabrics. In a nod to this rich past, the 92-bedroom hotel will blend references to these historic trades throughout its rooms, hallways and dining spaces, with bespoke fabrics, old trading maps and an evolving menu of wines. There will be a restaurant and wine bar, roof terrace and underground speakeasy cocktail bar too. Vintry & Mercer is part of Small Luxury Hotels of the World.
Stock Exchange Hotel, Manchester
Ryan Giggs and Gary Neville are transforming Manchester’s old Stock Exchange building into a five-star boutique hotel, with 40 bedrooms, two presidential suites, two restaurants and private dining in the wine cellars for up to 100 people. There’s no doubt this will be one of the most interesting new hotels in Manchester in 2019.
Pengelly Retreat, Cornwall
November 2018, early 2019
Pengelly Retreat, a peaceful lakeside hideaway in the heart of Cornwall, is adding two new unique holiday accommodations to its collection. The Sail House, a yurt with underfloor heating and a free-standing tub, will open in November 2018. The Boat House, an architect-designed wooden cabin with underfloor heating, a fire pit and a cantilevered balcony protruding over the Retreat’s deepest lake, is slated to open in early 2019. Large groups will be able to hire the entire Pengelly Retreat, including the four-bedroom Mill House and cosy one-bedroom Mill Annexe apartment, both of which are already welcoming guests.
Buxton Crescent hotel, thermal spa and visitor attraction, Derbyshire
The Crescent, a Grade I-listed architectural masterpiece in Buxton, will re-open as a luxury five-star hotel and visitor attraction. Around £50 million has been invested in the project, which includes an 80-bedroom hotel, the magnificent Assembly Rooms, a thermal natural mineral water spa in the Natural Baths and six prestigious retail premises along the front ground façade. The Crescent – designed by John Carr of York and opened in 1789 – was the centrepiece of the 5th Duke of Devonshire’s plans to establish a fashionable Georgian spa town in Buxton, and is one of the most architecturally significant buildings in the UK. The Buxton Crescent & Thermal Spa Heritage Trust Ltd will run the Visitor Experience in the Pump Room and a selection of spaces in the Crescent. www.buxtoncrescent.com or www.buxtoncrescenttrust.org.
Delight your Dog package at the Lygon Arms, Cotswolds
The recently refurbished Lygon Arms in Broadway is taking dog-friendly accommodation to a whole new level in 2019 with its new ‘Delight Your Dog’ package. With a dedicated doggy menu, a tail-waggingly comfy bed and plenty of surrounding space to run about and explore, it’s the perfect package to make sure your family pet is as well looked after as you. Pampered pooches are encouraged to join the family for lunch, afternoon tea or dinner in any of the property’s lounges or Terrace restaurant, and the hotel has teamed up with a local high-end luxurious dog grooming service.
Soho House Brighton
Work has started on the new Soho House development in Brighton’s Madeira Terraces. The work is part of the ongoing regeneration of Brighton’s seafront. When complete, the new Soho House Brighton will be part of the worldwide exclusive members club, with bedrooms, spa and a restaurant.
New apartments at Clowance Estate, Cornwall
Luxury Lodges in Clowance will further expand its range of luxury accommodation with its new Coach House Apartments. Set in a Grade II-listed building, the luxury apartments will each sleep up to six people and have an outdoor seating area and private hot tub overlooking Clowance Lake.
The Majestic Hotel Harrogate to re-open as DoubleTree by Hilton Harrogate, Yorkshire
The Cairn Group will re-open the Majestic Hotel as DoubleTree by Hilton Harrogate, following a £10 million refurbishment programme. Once complete, the palatian Victorian landmark hotel will have 170 guestrooms, a champagne bar and restaurant, a spa, pool and fitness facilities, and state-of-the-art conference and events spaces.
The Harper, North Norfolk
The development of the former Langham Glass site brings a luxurious boutique hotel to North Norfolk. The Harper North Norfolk, owned by The Bijou Collection, promises to be a contemporary, laid back and “appealingly unstuffy” country escape. The historic Norfolk brick-and-stone building will have 32 high-tech bedrooms with modern four-poster beds and high-spec bathrooms, two restaurants, and a luxury spa with a swimming pool, Jacuzzi, steam room, sauna, regular workout classes and treatments. Rooms from £210.
New easyHotel, Suffolk
A new easyHotel in Ipswich town centre will be the brand’s first in the east of England. The 89-bedroom super-budget hotel will be located in a former nightclub next door to the historic Great White Horse Hotel, which was described by Charles Dickens in The Pickwick Papers. A coffee shop will open on the ground floor.
The Wesley Hotel, Leeds
The Grade II-listed Oxford Place Methodist Church will be transformed into a 70-bedroom hotel. Plans also include a restaurant and meeting and conference facilities for around 100 delegates. The development is being run by The Wesley Hotel, a Methodist-based company with an ethically orientated business model; the company already runs similar social enterprise ventures in London and Rome.
New super-suites at Chapel House, Cornwall
This much-lauded boutique hotel in Penzance is adding two new super-suites to its collection of spacious, airy double rooms. The sunny new suites will be housed in a Georgian building across the courtyard garden; originally the building would have been used to store supplies for Chapel House’s kitchen. The suites will each have a ground-floor bedroom with a bespoke hand-crafted bed, Smart TV, iPad and a polished concrete en suite wet room, a living space with a deep sofa and a wood burner, and views across Mounts Bay – perfect for storm watching! Chapel House also plans to add a wood-fired hot tub and a small treatment room to the garden, in time for Easter 2019.
Refurb for Bristol Marriott Royal Hotel
The landmark hotel on College Green is currently refurbishing rooms and public spaces ready for a relaunch. The hotel is chucking out the chintz in favour of a new look that combines contemporary décor with moody greys, pewters and original Victorian marble and brass. First opened in 1868, the 150-year-old hotel features a magnificent Palm Court, a Romanesque leisure centre and rooms with views of Bristol Cathedral. During its long history, it has welcomed illustrious guests such as Cary Grant, Winston Churchill and Laurel and Hardy.
Hotel Indigo Manchester – Victoria Station
30 January 2019
The new Hotel Indigo Manchester – Victoria Station hotel sits at the gateway to Manchester’s hipster Northern Quarter, just a minute’s walk from the city’s historic Victoria train station. The hotel embraces a contemporary design while retaining many of the Victorian building’s original features. The restaurant, cocktail bar and 187 contemporary bedrooms will blend perfectly with the city’s Victorian and Industrial past.
The Langley Hotel & Spa, Buckinghamshire
The Langley, the former country estate of the third Duke of Marlborough, is being transformed into a luxury hotel and spa. Forty-one sophisticated rooms and suites will be split between the main building and the 18th-century, Grade II-listed Brew House. Along with fine food and drink and a bar stocked with cognac and cigars; the hotel will include a world-class spa, created in partnership with personal trainer and fitness author Matt Roberts. Outside visitors can enjoy Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown-landscaped gardens and parklands.
‘Tropical Paradise’ stay, Brighton
Brighton’s renowned rock ’n’ roll hotel, Hotel Pelirocco, has unveiled its latest themed room: Tropical Paradise. Guests will be welcomed by gently chirping cicadas as they settle in to the exotic sanctuary, where they can swing in a hammock and watch the sea roll in over Brighton Beach. Other indulgences include a rain forest shower in the stone-clad wet room, and a white linen-draped bed surrounded by luscious palms and flowers. The room also comes with a complimentary turntable and selection of curated records – or pick up your own from the city’s array of vintage vinyl shops.
Secular Retreat by Peter Zumthor, Devon
Swiss architect Peter Zumthor will open his first permanent building in the UK, ‘Secular Retreat’, in March 2019. Booking has opened for groups of up to ten for this eagerly awaited, five-bedroom space on a Devon hillside near the coast, whose striking, low-level design has been developed over ten years.
Hotel Indigo, Stratford-upon-Avon
An exciting new boutique hotel will open in Stratford-upon-Avon following a multi-million-pound restyling of the historic Falcon Hotel. With parts of the building dating back to the 15th century, the characterful, luxurious Hotel Indigo Stratford-upon-Avon plans to retain much of the structure’s original charm. Guestrooms will include flat-screen TVs, rainfall showers, deluxe toiletries and free wifi. There will also be a new state-of-the-art kitchen and restaurant led by a celebrity chef, a sociable bar and lounge, and a new gym and meeting room.
Huntsham Court, Devon
The south west’s ultimate country house retreat and flexible hire venue ideal for weddings, family celebrations and corporate retreats, is set to expand further in 2019 with the addition of five individually-designed bedroom suites. The new rooms will increase the total number of bedrooms from 35 to 40, with the house able to offer a total overnight capacity of 92 guests. Huntsham Court - now enjoying super-fast broadband throughout - will also reveal exciting new packages for the wedding and corporate markets in early 2019.
New Pig openings, West Sussex and Cornwall
As well as the new Pig at Bridge Place in Kent (scheduled for spring 2019, see below), Home Grown Hotels will add two more new Pigs to its litter in 2019. In West Sussex, the Grade II-listed Madehurst Lodge, near Arundel, will open as The South Downs Pig. In Cornwall, the Grade II-listed Harlyn House, which has views of the coast near Padstow, will open as The Pig at Harlyn Bay, hopefully in time for summer. As with the other Pigs, the kitchen garden and restaurant will form the beating heart of these new properties, and anything that can’t be supplied by the gardens will be sourced from the best producers within a 25-mile (40-km) radius.
The Pig at Bridge Place, Kent
The Pig at Bridge Place will be the newest addition to the litter of Pigs across the country when it opens in spring. The intriguing old building has hosted some legendary parties and gigs in its time – Led Zeppelin even played here in the 70s. Located in Bridge village near Canterbury, the 16th-century manor house has a wealth of period features including large fireplaces, secret stairways, panelled rooms and lots of nooks and crannies. The new hotel will have 28 bedrooms: seven bedrooms and numerous cosy bars and sitting areas in the main building; seven romantic ‘hop pickers’ huts’ on an island within the grounds; and two bedrooms in a newly restored gate lodge. Twelve more bedrooms will be in a new, carefully detailed Coach House, which will also feature a conservatory restaurant supplied by a kitchen garden and the best producers from within a 25-mile (40-km) radius. The casual Kitchen Larder in a converted barn will serve wood-fired cooking.
The Woodland Glade, Forest of Bowland
The Woodland Glade is a new exclusive glamping site of 10 luxury micro lodges situated in the midst of natural oak and beech woodland. Located in the heart of the Forest of Bowland on the historic Browsholme Hall Estate, these beautifully designed self-catering lodges make a perfect base to explore this Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Whether you’re looking to a place for you to relax and unwind, be active, or indulge yourself at one of the many award winning pubs and inns nearby. Great for walkers, cyclists, for short break holidays. Prices start £72 per night
New beach huts for Bournemouth Beach Lodges
The Bournemouth Beach Lodges have opened a further nine beach huts, meaning holiday-goers wishing to experience the excitement of being a stone’s throw from Bournemouth’s idyllic shore, have 25 huts to choose from. The bright airy Lodges are located only a few steps away from the soft sand and lapping waves and offer contemporary accommodation for up to four adults and two children. Each Lodge features its own extensively equipped kitchen, toilet, private decking, shower room and WiFi. Furniture is light and modular with clever storage solutions, while the colour palette both inside and out is light and warm – dove greys, powder blues and olive greens. You can book to stay in the Beach Lodges for 3, 4, 7, 10 or 11 nights, starting on a Monday or Friday. Rates vary throughout the year. Prices start at £295 for a four-night stay.
Manhattan Loft Gardens, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park
April 2019: date TBC
The 42-storey design hotel Manhattan Loft Gardens was founded by Harry Handelsman, the visionary behind the restored St Pancras Hotel and Chiltern Firehouse. With 145 guestrooms and suites, the skyscraper will excel in both aesthetic and functional design, delivering panoramic views of the city skyline and space for yoga classes and weekly gin tastings.
UK’s first Hard Rock Hotel, London
The Cumberland Hotel at Marble Arch will reopen as the UK’s first Hard Rock Hotel. The hotel has a suitable rock ’n’ roll history – it was here that Jimi Hendrix gave his last interview before he died, and Diana Ross, Bob Dylan, Stevie Wonder and Madonna are all former residents. As well as hosting live music performances, the hotel will have around 1,000 bedrooms and suites, a 370-seat Hard Rock Café, two bars, a Hard Rock shop, and about 100 pieces of rock memorabilia liberally scattered throughout. It will be one of only four Hard Rock Hotels outside the USA. Double rooms from £250 per night.
The Langley Hotel & Spa, Buckinghamshire
The Langley, the former country estate of the third Duke of Marlborough, is being transformed into a luxury hotel and spa. Forty-one sophisticated rooms and suites will be split between the main building and the 18th-century, Grade II-listed Brew House. The food and drink offering promises to be something to write home about, with an acclaimed chef behind the restaurant and a bar stocked with the finest cognac and cigars. The will be a world-class spa too, created in partnership with personal trainer and fitness author Matt Roberts. All this, set within Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown-landscaped gardens and parklands.
The Carriage at Shankly Hotel, Preston
Signature Living, the company behind the already hugely successful Shankly Hotel in Liverpool, are bringing their luxury brand to the city centre. In the shadows of the Harris Museum and reviving the city’s historic Old Post Office building, this super hotel recognises Preston’s connection with footballer Sir Tom Finney. Its new restaurant, The Carriage, themed around a 1930s rail carriage, opens in May ahead of the hotel’s launch in June. Its name gives a nod to 1933 when Bill Shankly OBE physically signed his contract for Preston North End whilst travelling in a First Class rail carriage between Carlisle and Preston.
New woodland spa at Gisborough Hall, North York Moors
Gisborough Hall, a privately owned Grade II-listed country house hotel, is investing in a stand-alone multi-million-pound luxury woodland spa development. Built into the surrounding woodland landscape, it will include an 18-metre (59-ft) indoor pool, an outdoor hydro-pool, a variety of heat experiences with relaxation space, nine treatment rooms, an extensive gym and a fitness studio. Room only from £80 per night.
New Dakota Deluxe hotel, Manchester
Work has started on the development of a £25 million, 137-bedroom hotel in Manchester, the third in the luxury Dakota Deluxe brand alongside properties in Glasgow and Leeds, the design-led Dakota Deluxe hotel will be located within a new £300 million mixed-use scheme on Ducie Street close to Piccadilly Station.
Shankly Hotel, Preston
Signature Living, the company behind the already hugely successful Shankly Hotel in Liverpool, are bringing their luxury brand to the city centre. In the shadows of the Harris Museum and reviving the city’s historic Old Post Office building, this super hotel recognises Preston’s connection with Preston and Sir Tom Finney. Its new restaurant, The Carriage, themed around a 1930s rail carriage, opens in May ahead of the hotel’s launch in June. Its name gives a nod to 1933 when Bill Shankly OBE physically signed his contract for Preston North End whilst travelling in a First Class rail carriage between Carlisle and Preston.
New hotel on Blackpool Pleasure Beach
Being built on Blackpool Pleasure Beach’s land, Boulevard Hotel will have 120 rooms, including 10 suites and family rooms, with a mixture of coastal and park facing windows, and stylish dining and conference facilities.
New luxury holiday park at Ullswater Heights
A new luxury holiday park from five-star resort operator Leisure Resorts, will open on 1st of July on the doorstep of the world-heritage-listed Lake District National Park. Encircling a beautiful eight-acre lake and set amongst 70 acres of land and designed gardens, the resort sets a whole new standard for high-end holiday accommodation, offering gorgeous holiday lodges for ownership or holidays, including spa getaways and a UK-first: centrally heated glamping tents with Jacuzzis. The resort is a dream getaway for couples, families with children and especially people travelling with dogs. Ullswater Heights’ 150 pitches include lodges for ownership and a range of brand-new holiday lodges for rental in partnership with Hoseasons, including Spa Retreats accommodating two couples, each with its own private courtyard complete with Jacuzzi spa, Akula furniture and sauna.
New 'bistro with beds', The Yan, Grasmere Lake District
Nestled amidst the beautiful Central Fells and a short stroll from the idyllic village of Grasmere, The Yan at Broadrayne is a truly special place at the heart of the Lake District National Park. The 17th Century former farm has seven plush en-suite bedrooms and a rustic bistro, offering rustic Cumbrian classics, nostalgic British favourites and exciting modern dishes - all made from the outstanding local ingredients with which Cumbria is blessed, including ingredients from Broadrayne Farm on which The Yan sits. Family-run, with dog-friendly rooms also, The Yan epitomises Cumbrian hospitality and is a perfect get-away after a day of adventure on the Lakes. Rooms from £100/ night.
Grantley Hall, Yorkshire Dales
6th July 2019
This new five-star luxury country resort hotel and spa is set in a grand 17th-century house on its own island where the River Skell splits in two, between Ripon and Harrogate. Grantley Hall is being brought back to its former early-20th-century glory and will have 47 rooms and suites, four restaurants, three bars, a private members club, a spa pool, state-of-the-art gym and elite performance centre, and landscaped gardens – including a 1910 Japanese Garden that’s on Historic England’s National Heritage List.
Vineyard hotel at Denbies Wine Estate, Surrey
England’s largest single estate vineyard is converting its existing farmhouse accommodation into what is being billed as the “UK’s first vineyard hotel”. Set on the Denbies estate in the Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and with sweeping views across the vineyard and North Downs Way, the new hotel will have 17 en-suite bedrooms (including a bridal suite), an Orangery-style garden restaurant, outdoor dining cabanas so diners can enjoy the view whatever the weather, and its own ‘Enomatic™ wine dispensing machine’ – meaning guests can taste and purchase Denbies wine by the glass. Hotel guests can take advantage of regular complimentary wine tasting tutorials, 7 miles (11km) of trails through the vineyard, and a ParkRun from the doorstep every Saturday morning. Serious effort has been made to achieve carbon-neutral status and blend the hotel building into its beautiful natural surroundings.
Studley Castle in Warwickshire
Following a 50million redevelopment Warner Leisure Hotels has launched a beautiful hotel curating more than 180 years of history, but utterly modern in outlook. Studley Castle is the perfect setting for a short break exploring and relaxing in rural Warwickshire, Historic Stratford-upon-Avon and the Cotswolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty are nearby. If you'd prefer to stay closer to home, relax in The Stables Spa or hire a Pashley bike and explore the grounds.
New bell tents and courses at Heath Farm Holiday Cottages, Cotswolds
Heath Farm Holiday Cottages will be marking 50 years at their Cotswolds site with a number of new developments. Bell tents will be available to hire over the summer, decked out with proper mattresses, Egyptian cotton bedding, spring water from the farm, eco wooden cutlery, solar powered showers and LED fairy lights. There will also be new woodcraft, photography and yoga courses, and there are plans for a pop-up woodland café, along with new gardens for two of the self-catering cottages.
New Inhabit Hotels, London
Inhabit London, a new hotel brand, have announced they will open their first London hotel in summer 2019. Set in six Georgian townhouses off a quaint Paddington mews,Inhabit London will offer a restorative townhouse experience to guests and the local community alike, across their 90 rooms. Wellness‐ savvy staff, healthy food choices, an all-day café, a mind‐improving library, regular fitness classes, yoga and guided meditation are some of the services on offer as well as. guided morning runs and mapped‐out running routes which enable you to get the most of London’s green spaces.
Nightly rates at Inhabit London will start from £150,
New cabins, rooms and spa at Congham Hall, Norfolk
Congham Hall Hotel has been granted planning permission to increase its number of letting units from 26 to 44, and add a new spa and café. Eight new Orchard Bedrooms will be built near the swimming pool, and six new Parkland and five new Woodland cabins will be built in the grounds. The new spa will have six treatment rooms, an outdoor thermal suite and the newly remodelled pool area will include a gym and a café. The Orchard Bedrooms and spa are due to open by summer 2019, with the cabins to follow.
Blackpool’s first five-star hotel to open
Blackpool’s only five-star hotel will be the Sands Venue Resort hotel, set to open in summer 2019. In prime position on Blackpool Promenade, just one building away from the glorious Blackpool Tower, the 96-bedroom property is being developed by Coolsilk Property & Investment. The building will have a glass façade and penthouse suites on the corner aspects of the hotel, providing views over the promenade and Irish Sea.
New Point A London Kensington
When it opens, the new Point A London Kensington will be the seventh London property in the Point A Hotels portfolio. Housed behind a retained late-Victorian façade on West Cromwell Road, within walking distance of must-see London attractions including the National History Museum and Harrods, this brand new property will have 103 guest rooms (including 5 accessible rooms), a spacious, 24-hour reception and lobby lounge, and superfast wifi throughout. Point A’s signature loyalty programme, the A-List, will offer extra value to guests through nearby restaurants and bars.
New Woodsman’s Huts and Woodlands Experience at The Resilience Centre, Gloucestershire
September 2019 Autumn
Woodland management and sustainable BBQ charcoal makers The Resilience Centre is planning to launch Woodsman’s Huts, bespoke high-end eco-friendly accommodation, each sleeping up to four people. The huts will be in a beautiful, secluded spot where woodland meets meadow in a south-facing valley at the southern end of the Forest of Dean, with long-distance views to the Cotswolds. In summer, the Centre plans to offer experiential tourism linked to their woodland activities, on-site produce and sustainable charcoal production. They’re also considering launching occasional pre-booked BBQ feast events for around 50 guests, with top quality guest chefs who specialise in barbequing.
Hotel Indigo Bath
1 September 2019
Set in a honey-coloured Georgian building on Bath’s elegant South Parade, and within easy walking distance of many of Bath’s sights, the new Hotel Indigo Bath will have 166 bedrooms, including 12 original underground vaulted bedrooms.
Mama Shelter to open in Shoreditch
Trendy Mama Shelter, who harken from LA, will open its first property in London’s Shoreditch this autumn. With cutting-edge design elements specially crafted by Dion & Arles, Mama London has 193 rooms, a vast lobby, plenty of places to work and gather, along with a private dining room and a couple of karaoke rooms in which to sing your heart out. It also has a restaurant and a terrace. Small rooms from £79/ night. They’re taking bookings for stays from 1 October.
Hampton by Hilton, Leeds
Hilton will grow its Leeds hotel offering in 2019 when it opens the new Hampton by Hilton Leeds City Centre. The 192-bedroom hotel will be spread across 14 storeys on Bridge Street, close to Victoria Gate shopping centre and the emerging creative quarter in the Mabgate district.
Activities, Tours, Trails and Holidays__________________________________________________________
The Bear Grylls Adventure, Birmingham
The Bear Grylls Adventure, a new permanent attraction at Birmingham NEC, will feature a series of adventure activities designed to test self-belief and physical and mental agility. Challenges will include conquering small spaces, indoor skydiving, the highest free-roam high ropes in Europe and the chance to scuba or snorkel near sharks and other creatures of the deep. Merlin Entertainments has created the £20 million, 8,000-square-metre (86,111-square-ft) attraction in partnership with Bear Grylls. The adventurer and survival expert has been heavily involved in the attraction’s development, from conceptualisation to providing insight into the challenges. From £20 per person.
Lanserhof to open at The Arts Club, London
A new Lanserhof medical gym will give members of The Arts Club access to some of the world’s top medical experts and cutting-edge treatments. A favourite of rock stars and CEOs, Lanserhof’s concept combines holistic medicine with regeneration and prevention. Located opposite the club, facilities at Lanserhof at The Arts Club will include consulting and treatment rooms, a state-of-the-art ultra-contemporary gym, and cryotherapy chambers that will briefly expose users to temperatures as low at -90°C. The new medical gym will be headed by general manager Sheila McCann, McCann is also general manager of Grayshott Health Spa in Surrey, which Lanserhof acquired in 2017 and plans to fully refurbish.
Make My Day, London and Nationwide
This new adventure experience website created by award-winning travel journalist Nick Boulos aims to revolutionise and personalise your experience of the UK. Launched in 20th January, it offers bespoke personalised experiences in London, from doorstep discoveries to flying high over the skyscrapers. Each Mystery Day will comprise of three unforgettable tours and experiences which, when pieced together, will create personalised and memorable days. Other locations in the UK will be added too/ Prices vary from £10pp and £69pp for Mystery Days.
New Cookery School at the Grand Hotel & Spa, York
A new cookery school is scheduled to open in March 2019 at the luxurious The Grand Hotel York, located a few minutes’ walk from York station. Described as ‘a place to relax, have fun, make friends and learn something new’, this new culinary venture promises to cook up a storm in the north. Guests will learn how to prepare authentic dishes, with fresh local produce at the heart of each creation. As well as corporate days, there will also be academy classes for those looking to advance their skills. Even the kids will have an opportunity to get involved with bespoke classes during the holidays. Perfect for developing cooking knowledge or to spend time with friends or family, the classes will be designed to appeal to all abilities, from novice to those looking to give Nigel Slater a run for his money. Sessions will range from £65 for a half-day to full day courses from £145 led by expert tutors.
New Stargazing Kayak with Norfolk Outdoor Adventures
March – October
This is your opportunity to get out onto the water and experience one of the best parts of the Norfolk Broads. Start on the still waters of Hickling Broad you will join highly experienced guides on a rudder controlled and easy to paddle Horizon two seater kayak. Only this time at night and gazing at the plethora of stars hanging above the shimmering water. Tours happen once a month, from March through to October and cost £45 per person.
Re-launch of the Elgar Touring Route
The Elgar route is a 37-mile journey around the Malverns and Worcestershire which follows in the footsteps of the legendary composer, Sir Edward Elgar.People can drive, cycle and take in walks on the newly sign-posted route and see landmarks which inspired Worcestershire’s most famous son to create his greatest works. Key attractions include The Firs: Elgar's Birthplace in Lower Broadheath, Great Malvern, the Malvern Hills, the riverside town of Upton-upon-Severn and the historic city of Worcester.
Variant 31 Theatre
Taking place at Space 18, a new complex dedicated to immersive and experimental theatre, Variant 31 will be Europe’s largest immersive gaming experience. Featuring a cast of 120 professional actors trained in parkour, aerial acrobatics and stage combat, this opening show will be an immersive zombie survival game that is both high adrenaline and fast-paced.
New Campfire Clubs at The Nest Collective, Bristol and Sheffield
The Nest Collective runs gigs and ceilidhs in unusual spaces. Its Friday night Campfire Club (May-September) sees guests gather around a fire in a secret London location for outdoor unplugged folk music in off the beaten track spots such as community gardens, nature reserves and city farms. New for this year, these Campfire Clubs will also run in Bristol, Machynlleth and Sheffield. Prices £9:00-£12:00
FREE pop-up cookery classes in London
3 July-12 October
Run by expert chefs at exciting venues across the capital every Wednesday and Thursday from 3 July until 14 October, these fun, sustainable classes will help the time-poor up-skill in the kitchen and reduce the 910k tonnes of food that goes to waste in London homes each year. The first workshops kick off with a weekly ‘Waste-FREE Lunch’ every Thursday during July at Mercato Metropolitano. Learn how to make a healthy, sustainable packed lunch and then eat the results – all in a quick lunchtime session. July’s classes will also run on Wednesday evenings at venues throughout London. For more details: http://smallchangebigdifference.london/events/small-change-big-difference-cookery-skills-workshops/ Book the free workshops via Eventbrite: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/o/small-change-big-difference-20236956981
New Tofu-making Workshops at Tofurei, Norwich
The UK’s first shop based micro soya dairy is going to offer new tofu-making workshops to complement its range of exciting vegan based food. Tofurei, based in Norwich’s picturesque lanes, boasts a shop and café with a vegan deli counter including soysages, burgers, loose tofu and a unique fresh tofu, all produced using their unique Norfolk tofu. Their new range of workshops are planned to take place in their new premises from late 2018 and will last just over 2 hours and offer a fun and practical way to a dairy alternative. Costs include all materials and use of equipment and you get to take home a litre of soya milk and a free set of ingredients for your next batch.
The Great West Way touring route opening
5 November 2018
The Great West Way, a new touring route that travels west from England’s capital city of London to Bristol, is declared officially open today, 5 November. Encompassing 500 miles (805 km) of navigable routes, the Great West Way can be travelled by bike, road, rail, canal or on foot (or a combination of all five), making the route the first of its kind. However it is explored, the multi-modal route will take visitors on a quintessentially English experience. It takes in some of the country’s most iconic attractions, including Hampton Court Palace, Windsor Castle, Highclere Castle (AKA Downton Abbey) Stonehenge and the Georgian city of Bath, passing through picturesque countryside, thriving market towns and chocolate box villages en-route. It covers three UNESCO sites (Kew Gardens, Stonehenge/Avebury and Bath), three Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (the Chilterns, the Cotswolds and North Wessex Downs) and a plethora of pubs, tearooms, breweries, vineyards and Michelin-starred restaurants, offering visitors a taste of real England.
New boating and private dining experiences at Talland Bay Hotel, Cornwall
Talland Bay Hotel is adding two new experiences for 2019. Half and full day trips aboard the Talland Bay Hotel Princess 40 Flybridge Cruiser will whisk up to eight people at a time off to explore the Cornish coast. Guests could spot seals, seabirds and dolphins on a tour around Looe Island (Cornwall’s only marine nature reserve), or sail to Fowey to see places that inspired Daphne du Maurier and Kenneth Grahame. The hotel will also offer private afternoon tea dining for two to 10 people in the redwood pavilion, set on pine-fringed lawns with views across the ocean.
Float in the Forest, Gloucestershire
When it launches, Float in the Forest will be the first floatation centre in the Forest of Dean, and one of the few centres in the country where visitors emerge from their float into a natural environment rather than a hectic high street. Float in the Forest is on the edge of woodland, so blissed-out guests in an enhanced state of sensory awareness can walk through the trees and listen to the birds following their float. There are also plans to launch various wellbeing packages later in the year. It’s an ideal accompaniment to some of the area’s more physically demanding experiences such as kayaking and hiking.
Salisbury Plain Heritage Centre, Wiltshire
Salisbury Plain has been selected as the preferred location for construction of a new military museum and exhibition centre by the Royal Artillery Collection. Slated to open in spring, the purpose-built interactive attraction will immerse visitors in the 300-year story of the Royal Artillery through one of the UK’s largest military collections.
Warwick Castle, Falconer’s Quest
All eyes will be on the skies over Warwick Castle in April 2019 for the launch of an all-new outdoor show: The Falconer’s Quest will be the UK’s largest birds of prey show! Due to the sold-out success of its first-ever nighttime show, Dragon Slayer, in August 2018, the light-spectacular returns by popular demand for summer 2019 with an increased number of performances and an updated story. Ever-popular family seasonal activities pack the calendar at half-term, Halloween (The Haunted Castle), Christmas (Stories with Santa; Santa Sleepovers), and the Knight’s Village offers year-round riverside lodge breaks and summer glamping.
Entry costs from £15 per person (when booked in advance online).
New tours up the Royal Liver Building, Liverpool
Royal Liver Building 360 will open up the city’s most recognisable building – home to the famous Liver Birds and Europe’s first skyscraper - for the first time to visitors. Incorporating a museum, immersive experience inside the clockface and even a trip up the tower for unforgettable 360 degree views from the Liver Birds’ perch, this is one not to miss. Royal Liver Building 360 is a new world-class visitor attraction unlocking a city icon. RLB 360 will be designed, delivered and operated by Heritage Great Britain in partnership with Corestate. The tour, which is suitable for those aged 7 years and over, will take approximately 70 minutes and is limited to groups of 14 people per time slot. More information is available from the website where tickets are on sale now. £15 adult, £10 children
Ice Age: The Lost Kingdom,
Nationwide tour, various dates
A brand-new, prehistoric, outdoor family attraction coming to the UK for the first time in 2019, Ice Age: The Lost Kingdom is Europe’s first touring animatronic Ice Age experience and will bring to life the sights and sounds of the Ice Age with 40 majestic beasts that roamed the world some 70,000 years ago. A variety of street food outlets will be available, together with a mini-cinema marquee showing an educational Ice Age documentary, as well as a fossil excavation pit for children to unearth skeletons.
Expect street parties, music, activities and great food as the wonders of this English country is celebrated in the first ever Surrey Day. Held in association with BBC Surrey and Surrey Life magazine, the day will see venues across the county will host their own special events. Among the events taking place are a street party at the mysterious beauty spot Silent Pool featuring Albury Organic Vineyard and friends; the lighting of a beacon at Priory Farm accompanied by street food and live music; and a pop-up food market at The White Horse in Dorking, and a guided walk along Surrey’s special national trail- the North Downs Way. Other highlights include free entry for Surrey residents at Watts Gallery – Artists’ Village, in Compton and the chance to have a private visit to the remarkable ruins of the National Trust’s Clandon Park before restoration work begins in 2020.
UNESCO Cities of Literature, Norwich and Nottingham
Cultural leaders from 28 countries will come to the UK in May 2019 for a global gathering of the UNESCO Cities of Literature. Norwich and Nottingham, two of the UK’s four Cities of Literature, have been successful in a joint bid to host the week-long programme of cultural events. It will be the first time that the prestigious international forum has taken place in England. The two-stage gathering - Nottwich 2019 - will bring together writers and practitioners from across the world and act as a catalyst for future artistic collaboration. Representatives from the UNESCO Cities of Design, Film, Music and Media Arts will be involved in the planning to ensure a cross art-form opportunity for creative exchange.
New Norfolk Bird & Wildlife Fair at Pensthorpe Nature Reserve
18 – 19 May
Showcasing why Norfolk is renowned as ‘the birdwatching capital of Britain’, the Norfolk Bird & Wildlife Fair will feature guest speakers, demonstrations, walks and talks, and book signings. The event is a celebration of nature-spotting in Norfolk and will bring together experts in the fields of optic equipment, wildlife-inspired art and crafts, books and wildlife and nature holidays. April and May are the peak times for spring bird migration so the event provides a weekend for birders to visit and stay in Norfolk, right in the middle of the busy migratory period.
New Dog Festival, Hampshire
18th -19th May
New dog festival is coming to the UK. Dogstival is launching in the UK and will feature plenty of activities for both dogs and their owners. Adult tickets start from £15.44, child tickets from £9.11, while your dog can go for free.
New Intu Lakeside, Essex
Spring/ Summer 2019
Nickolodeon will open the first indoor theme park in the UK at Intu Lakeside shopping centre. Together with Puttshack, which offers adult golfing, Flip Out, which offers trampolining and Hollywood Bowl. There will also be numerous new restaurants and shops.
New Slow Travel Guide to Isle of Wight
Eight sustainable travel touring routes, across the Isle of Wight have been carefully researched, tried-and-tested, written up in The Slow Travel Guide to the Isle of Wight. Mark Rowe, the editor of BBC Countryfile magazine’s news pages generated the guide, which includes eight touring routes, each based in a different geographical area of the Island, are all accessible without the need for a car. The routes are not prescriptive: at a push, visitors could do each of these routes in a single day (although that, it could be argued, would be to miss the point!). The message is clear: “Slow down, perhaps see less than you would in the same time in a car, but see more of what you do visit”.
New goats-cheese making course at Fielding Cottage
Norfolk Holidays are a new self-catering accommodation for families and individuals set on a farm offering goat’s cheese making experiences (whether you stay at their accommodation or not). They have two cottages that sleep between two and four people, and a one-bedroom apartment that can accommodate two people. Their award-winning goat’s cheese and goat’s milk skincare products can be purchased from the self-service ‘Goat Shed’ shop on the farm. During Summer Months they also offer Pizza Nights every other Friday throughout the months of June, July & August. Guests also have complementary access to the health and fitness facilities at The edge Health and Fitness at Barnham Broom Golf and Country Club , including use of; indoor heated swimming pool, air conditioned gym, sauna & steam rooms, and also Squash and tennis courts.
New Great British Cycling Festival
27 June – 30 June
This will be a sensational new elite sports and mass participation festival where a 100 mile closed road event will start and finish in Norwich City Centre and experience the same route, on the same day – Sunday 30th June - as the pros for the HSBC UK | National Road Championships. The festival has many elements to it, including: The men’s and women’s national time trial championships 27 June which start and finish on the Sandringham Estate, the men’s and women’s road race 30 June (men’s race to start in Norwich, women’s to start in Wells, both finish in Norwich, and a mass-participation amateur event as well as a family fun-ride in Norwich City Centre.
New National Trust working holidays, nationwide
May – September 2019
The National Trust is introducing some new working holidays in 2019, including: river restoration at Croome, Worcestershire (19 – 25 May, £160); plant life surveying in Woolbeding, West Sussex (22 – 29 June, £170); and the chance to learn basic navigation skills as you help rangers with dry-stone walling, woodland management and footpath repair in Wasdale, Cumbria (14 – 21 September, £170).
New Discoverer Pass for the Great West Way
Great Western Railway’s Great West Way Discoverer Pass is the largest integrated rail and bus ticket of its kind, in the UK. The Great West Way is a 125-mile touring route between London, Bath and Bristol, based on ancient routes, roaming through idyllic countryside, quaint villages and elegant towns. The best and most relaxing way to explore the route is by rail, and the Great West Way Discoverer pass allows you unlimited off-peak train and bus travel between London Paddington and Bristol Temple Meads, with options to branch off in the Thames Valley, Cotswolds and Wiltshire – all with just a single ticket. There are three Great West Way Discoverer routes available, giving you the opportunity to explore the area in one-day instalments or over the duration of a week. Domestic prices start from £24 for a 1-day pass. Visit GreatWestWay.co.uk to plan your adventure.
Seeing It Differently, Norwich
7 – 18 August 2019
Seeing It Differently will see a 40ft helter skelter installed in the West End of the Nave of Norwich Cathedral. This rather unusual addition will give people the chance to experience the centuries-old space in a new way and open up conversations about faith.including a closer look at its famous medieval roof bosses that depict stories from the Bible - and they will quite literally see things differently. Seeing It Differently will also feature a number of other installations for people to experience.
Surfing Comes Inland - ‘The Wave’ to open in Bristol
The Wave - a unique inland surfing destination - is opening in Bristol this October. The brainchild of Founder, Nick Hounsfield, the project has been 8 years in the making and is the first destination in the northern hemisphere to offer the Wavegarden Cove wave-making technology which can provide up 1,000 waves of varying sizes and shapes an hour – around a wave every 8 seconds. Heights start at 50cm and peak at almost 2m. Located in a beautiful rural site on the edge of Bristol, The Wave will, also offer food and drink, a surf shop, beautiful gardens, meadowland and woodland, peaceful hideaways and family-friendly camping. Its expert coaching team will be able to help everyone learn and improve and will also be specially trained in teaching ‘adaptive surfing’ for those with a wide range of physical disabilities. There are dedicated areas of the lake for beginner, intermediate and advanced surfers. To find out more visit www.thewave.com
Capital Crime Festival, London
26-28th September 2019
The inaugural Capital Crime festival which is taking place this September at the Connaught Rooms in London. Guests include Mark Billingham, Martina Cole, Ian Rankin, Ann Cleeves, Don Winslow, Robert Glenister, Leye Adenle, Denise Mina, Anthony Horowitz, Catherine Steadman and Abir Mukherjee. The first international crime and thriller festival in London, Capital Crime offers fans unprecedented access to their favourite crime and thriller creatives. Capital Crime is a celebration of books, films and TV and the line-up is an unrivalled mix of world class talent, rising stars and newcomers. Capital Crime is a must for fans of all things crime and thriller.
100th anniversary of Armistice Day, nationwide
Throughout 2018 and 11 November 2018
The 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War will be marked by large-scale events across the nation. The commemorations will focus on reflection and remembrance, as well as social history and homecoming. The National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire will count down 100 days to go (from 8 August), leading to a big service on Remembrance Sunday. In Wiltshire, the American Museum in Britain’s Side by Side: America and World War I exhibition focuses on America’s involvement in the war (until 28 October 2018). Wordsworth House and Garden in Cumbria is marking the anniversary with a powerful new exhibition, Where Poppies Blow: the British soldier, nature and the Great War (until 28 October).
90th anniversary of the opening of the Tyne Bridge, NewcastleGateshead
10 October 2018
When it was opened by King George V in 1928, the Tyne Bridge was the longest single span bridge in the world. Nowadays it’s still the most celebrated of the seven bridges spanning the River Tyne. The 90th anniversary of work starting on the iconic bridge was marked in 2015 with the creation of a limited-run 3,000 piece Tyne Bridge Lego model, so expect plenty of celebrations in 2018.
400th anniversary of Sir Walter Raleigh’s execution, Dorset
29 October 2018
Sherborne Castle is celebrating the life and legacy of Sir Walter Raleigh, one of the best-known characters of the Elizabethan era. A favourite of Queen Elizabeth, Raleigh was a poet, a historian and an explorer; he journeyed to South America in search of the legendary City of Gold, and his account of his adventure helped build the legend of El Dorado. He was sentenced to death by beheading by King James I on 29 October 1618. Sherborne Castle was built by Raleigh in 1594 and a new exhibition here will tell his remarkable story. The castle has been the home of the Digby family since 1617; Maria Wingfield Digby's book Sir Walter Raleigh was published by Pitkin Books earlier this year.
100th anniversary of the death of war poet Wilfred Owen
4 November 2018
Poet Wilfred Owen was killed in action almost exactly one week before the Armistice signalled the end of the First World War. He is regarded by many as the greatest poet of the First World War. Owen was born in Shropshire, although he has connections with Birkenhead, Cheshire, Shrewsbury and Yorkshire.
900th anniversary of Leeds Castle, Kent
Leeds Castle will celebrate its 900th anniversary with a series of events, including some that will be attended by Princess Alexandra, who has been the castle’s patron for the last 40 years. Leeds Castle Calssic Concert
This year's Leeds Castle Classical Concert takes place on Saturday 13th July and will be celebrating Leeds Castle's 900th anniversary. From daylight to dusk, the audience will be a sea of Union Jacks, candelabras and smiles. With classical favourites, ground-shaking cannons, a jaw-dropping fly past and a breath-taking firework display, there really is something for everyone at this ultimate summer event.
500th anniversary of the death of Leonardo da Vinci
To mark the 500th anniversary of his death on 2 May 1519, 144 of Leonardo da Vinci’s greatest drawings from the Royal Collection will go on show in 12 simultaneous exhibitions across the country. Leonardo da Vinci: A Life in Drawings will run 1 February – 6 May in venues in cities including Birmingham, Bristol, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Sheffield, Southampton and Sunderland; each will display 12 drawings by the Renaissance master. The drawings will then be brought together at The Queen’s Gallery, Buckingham Palace, London, to form part of the largest exhibition of da Vinci’s work in over 65 years (24 May – 13 October).
125th anniversary of the opening of the Manchester Ship Canal
2019 is a great time to sail along the Manchester Ship Canal. Hailed as an engineering wonder of the late Victorian age, a cruise along the canal is now one of the North West’s most popular full-day trips. When it was opened by Queen Victoria in 1894, it was the largest river navigation canal in the world. Mersey Ferries is running a full programme of cruises to celebrate the anniversary. Their 35-mile (56-km) Ship Canal trip runs from May through to October in 2019.
100th anniversary of the Forestry Commission
The Forestry Commission was established by an act of parliament in 1919 as a response to timber shortages suffered during the First World War; the first trees were planted at Eggesford, Devon on 8 December 1919. A year-long, nationwide programme of celebrations is planned, with nature-lovers invited to take part in The Big Forest Find, England’s largest public survey of forest wildlife, artists’ and writers’ commissions shining a light on the beauty, diversity and productivity of our forests, and runners and walkers challenged to take part in a new series of 10km events taking place on forest trails around the country.
70th anniversary of National Parks
2019 marks 70 years since the 1949 National Parks and Access to the Countryside Act, which led to the creation of National Parks and National Trails. National Parks across the country will be marking the anniversary with various events and celebrations. Expect National Parks Week 2019 to be extra special.
50th anniversary of the first manned mission to the moon
20 July 2019
2019 marks 50 years since man first walked on the moon, an occasion Liverpool will mark by hosting the Royal Observatory Greenwich’s Astronomy Photographer of the Year exhibition at its World Museum (3 May – 1 September 2019). Up to 100 images from the 2018 competition shortlist, by amateur and professional photographers from 91 countries, will be displayed - including a mesmerising mosaic of the Great Orion and the Running Man Nebula, a magical scene of an Aurora Borealis exploding over Iceland’s south coast, and a solar transit of the International Space Station between two massive sunspots. Admission is free.
50th anniversary of RSPB Bempton Cliffs
RSPB Bempton Cliffs is making 2019 the year of "Bird"lington to mark the 50th anniversary of the reserve, which is home to the UK’s largest mainland seabird colony.
50th anniversary of Biddenden Vineyards, Kent
Kent’s original commercial vineyard at Maidstone turns 50 in 2019. It’s still owned and managed independently by the Barnes family, with the second and third generation currently running the estate. Biddenden was originally home to a 40-acre apple orchard, but when apple prices started to decline in the late 1960s, Mrs Barnes decided to plant one third of an acre with vines. Nowadays, visitors are welcome to stroll round the 23-acre vineyard, which is open daily, to see the 11 different grape varieties grown on gentle south-facing slopes. Tastings include Biddenden’s award-winning, estate grown still and sparkling wines, Kentish ciders and mead. Private guided tours can be pre-booked.
125th anniversaries of The Blackpool Tower and the Grand Theatre Blackpool
Two Blackpool icons celebrate milestone birthdays in 2019. Blackpool Tower was completed in 1894, thanks to the vision of John Bickerstaffe (a former Mayor of Blackpool) and about £290,000, 5 million bricks, 2,500 tonnes of iron and 93 tonnes of cast steel. The Blackpool Tower Circus and Blackpool Tower Ballroom were designed by Frank Matcham and, since it first opened to the public on 14 May 1894, The Blackpool Tower Circus hasn’t missed a season. Matcham also had a hand in building Blackpool’s Grand Theatre, the other Blackpool icon marking 125 years in 2019; his brief was to build “the prettiest theatre in the land” and when it opened in 1894, the theatre was hailed as “Matcham’s Masterpiece”.
125th anniversary of William George Armstrong’s restoration of Bamburgh Castle
Pioneering Victorian industrialist and inventor William George Armstrong bought Bamburgh in 1894, and started restoring the crumbling ruin into the fine fortress it is today. Armstrong, a Tyneside corn merchant’s son who became known as the First Lord Armstrong, was an engineer on a par with the Stephenson brothers and Brunel. He also built Cragside, the first house in Britain to be lit by hydroelectricity. His hydraulics were used to power the original lifting mechanism of London’s Tower Bridge and the swing bridge across the Tyne between Newcastle and Gateshead. His remarkable story is told in Bamburgh Castle’s Armstrong Museum.
100 years of Bettys, Yorkshire
Iconic Yorkshire tea rooms Bettys first opened its doors 100 years ago. Frederick Belmont, a Swiss confectioner, baker and chocolatier who came to England to seek his fortune and accidentally ended up in Yorkshire, launched the first Bettys café in Harrogate in 1919. Bettys York opened in 1937, followed by branches in Ilkley and Northallerton; Bettys Craft Bakery opened in 2000, Bettys Cookery School in 2001. Bettys’ afternoon teas and signature Fat Rascals are legendary – yet no-one knows why the institution is called Bettys!
200th anniversary of John Ruskin’s birth
8 February 2019
The 200th anniversary of the birth of Ruskin, the Victorian art critic, artist, philanthropist and social reformer, will be celebrated globally, recognising his influence on art and society. The calendar of events taking place in the UK (and across the world) includes John Ruskin and the Sheffield Experiment, an exhibition organised by the Guild of St George (a charitable education trust founded by Ruskin) and Museums Sheffield; the exhibition will be on show at Two Temple Place, London (26 January – 28 April) and then re-presented at Millennium Gallery, Sheffield (29 May – 15 September). Celebrations will also take place at Coniston in Cumbria (where Ruskin is buried).
50 years of Concorde
2 March 2019
2019 marks 50 years since the first flight of the supersonic aircraft (2 March 1969), which was made and developed in Bristol. Learn about the amazing aircraft and step aboard Concorde Alpha Foxtrot, the last to be built and to fly, at Aerospace Bristol. Brooklands Museum in Guildford will also mark the occasion; plans are in draft phase, but look set to feature a celebrity to come and lower the nose of Concorde, a line-up of ex-Concorde pilots (including Captain Mike Banister – Chief Concorde Pilot), and a Red Arrows Flypast.
50th anniversary of the Cleveland Way National Trail, North York Moors National Park
24 May 2019
The second National Trail was launched on 24 May 1969 and to celebrate its 50th anniversary, the North York Moors National Park is hosting a series of events, including a Cleveland Way dedicated Walking Festival in May 2019, "Art to Go" summer exhibition at the Inspired by... gallery, sand art sculptures and a film competition.
200th anniversary of the birth of Queen Victoria
24 May 2019
The queen who gave her name to one of the most flourishing eras of British history was born in Kensington Palace on 24 May 1819. Queen Victoria took the throne in 1837 at the age of 18; when she died at Osborne House on the Isle of Wight on 22 January 1901, she was the longest-serving monarch in British history (since surpassed by Queen Elizabeth II). Her reign was marked by a series of firsts and remarkable events: in 1842 she was the first reigning monarch to travel by train; she oversaw the biggest empire in history and in 1887 added Empress of India to her title; and between 1840 and 1882 she withstood no fewer than seven attempts on her life. Victoria is buried in the Frogmore Royal Mausoleum in Windsor, beside her husband Prince Albert, who died aged 42 in 1861. Expect celebrations to take place across the country, including at English Heritage flagship property Osborne on the Isle of Wight; Windsor; Leeds; Whitby; and London’s Kensington Palace, which will open a permanent re-presentation of her rooms.
15 years of The Trentham Estate, Staffordshire
29 May 2019
2019 marks the 15th anniversary of the re-opening of Trentham Gardens, Stoke-on-Trent. Five years ago, when Trentham celebrated its 10th anniversary, The Daily Telegraph ran a full-page story on the front cover of its gardens section, describing it as “The gardens makeover of the decade”. Many, many more awards later, the gardens are now the fourth most-visited paid-for gardens attraction in England, boasting one of the finest Italian gardens outside of Italy. Trentham is currently creating the UK’s longest sequence of contemporary perennial plantings, designed meadows, and naturalistic gardens. Plans are in place to mark the 15th anniversary throughout 2019.
Restored carriage gets to work on the Watercress Line, Hampshire
One of the two traditional wooden-framed carriages that are being restored to their former glory will be in operation at the steam railway by mid-2019. The restoration is part of the Canadian-Pacific Project, the Watercress Line steam railway’s Heritage Lottery-funded locomotive restoration project, which is returning a magnificent Merchant Navy class locomotive to its original state. Also part of the project is the complete refurbishment of the Watercress Line’s Ropley Station site; the new interpretation will use fun hands-on interactives to educate visitors on how steam locomotives work, and how they are restored.
200th anniversary comeback for the Bakewell Show, Derbyshire
30 June 2019
One of the Peak District and Derbyshire’s biggest and best-known agricultural events, Bakewell Show, will be back to celebrate its 200th anniversary in a one-day spectacular on Sunday 30 June 2019. First launched back in 1819, the show was cancelled in 2018, but directors plan to bring it back in style for 2019, taking it right back to its roots in supporting farmers and growers and exploring the past, present and future of agriculture and horticulture. Attractions will include a livestock showcase, sheep-shearing exhibition, planting, harvesting and cookery demonstrations and workshops on butchery, dairy produce and egg production
70th anniversary of Jane Austen’s House Museum, Hampshire
Jane Austen’s House museum in Chawton is celebrating its 70th anniversary. Details of events and displays are not confirmed at this point but the museum will hold a celebration event in July, the month that the museum first opened.
40th anniversary of Buxton International Festival, Derbyshire
5 – 21 July 2019
Buxton International Festival will mark its 40th anniversary with Georgiana, a newly commissioned opera pasticcio. Georgiana chronicles the scandalous life of the Fifth Duchess of Devonshire. Buxton Festival was launched in 1979 to help save Buxton Opera House – the work of distinguished theatre architect Frank Matcham, who also designed the London Palladium and Blackpool Tower Ballroom, which is celebrating its 125th anniversary in 2019) – from a fate as a run-down cinema. It now has a global reputation for reviving rarely-performed operas, as well as creating ground-breaking new material of its own. 2019 also sees the 40th annual Buxton Festival Fringe (3 – 24 July).
75th anniversary of D-Day landings
6 June 2019
The D-Day Story museum in Portsmouth has undergone a major redevelopment ahead of the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landings, and will be commemorating the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landing with a series of special events. It’s the only museum in the UK dedicated to the Normandy Landings on 6 June 1944 but many more events and commemorations will take place across the country too.
60th anniversary of the Mini, Cotswolds and Bristol
The British Motor Museum will be marking 60 years of the iconic British car with a two-day show (3 – 4 August) and a series of Mini-themed family activities. The event is timed for the weekend before the International Mini Meet in Bristol (8 – 12 August), to encourage many of the hundreds of international visitors to stop off at the Cotswolds and the British Motor Museum.
200th anniversary of the Peterloo Massacre, Manchester
16 August 2019
On 16 August 1819 in St Peter's Fields, Manchester, armed cavalry charged a peaceful crowd of around 60,000 people gathered to listen to anti-poverty and pro-democracy speakers. It is estimated that 18 people were killed, and over 700 seriously injured. Commemorative events have been taking place on the anniversary for a number of years, but as the bicentenary anniversary approaches a significant number of activities and events are being planned for delivery throughout the year, including the unveiling of a permanent memorial by artist Jeremy Deller. Manchester Histories in partnership with key cultural organisations from the region is planning a comprehensive Peterloo 2019 events programme that explores the story of Peterloo from a contemporary perspective, with regional, national and internationally recognised contributors (June – August). Manchester’s People’s History Museum, the national museum of democracy, is marking the anniversary with Protest: past, present and future, a year-long interactive programme that explores the changing face of protest. Director Mike Leigh’s film about the massacre, Peterloo, is released in the UK in October 2018.
25th Anniversary of Ludlow food festival
The first successful food and drink festival to be held in the UK, Ludlow Marches Food and Drink Festival made an enormous impact, and has spawned countless imitations all over the country – but it's still the best one! It's been going for over 20 years now, and it's all about showcasing, tasting and enjoying the superb food and drink made and supplied by small-scale, high-quality independent producers from Ludlow and the Welsh Marches (the English-Welsh border country). It's all locally produced, with a few special exceptions, and there is a fantastic festival spirit pervading the town throughout the three days of the festival.
200th anniversary of John Keats’ composition of ‘To Autumn’
19 September 2019
After a walk along the River Itchen near Winchester on 19 September 1819, John Keats composed what is widely regarded by critics as one of the most perfect short poems ever written. ‘To Autumn’ is the last work in a group of Keats’ poems known as the “1819 odes”, published in 1820. As the “Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness” approaches, it’s the perfect time to follow a self-guided walk in the poet’s footsteps through Winchester and the landscape that inspired those three perfect stanzas. A programme of special events celebrating Keats’s visit to Winchester and the ode that came of it will include guided tours, poetry readings, and more.
70th anniversary of the Cheltenham Literature Festival in 2019
One of the UK’s oldest and most distinguished literary festivals turns 70 in 2019. The Cheltenham Literature Festival is widely seen by the UK’s publishing industry as the launchpad for its biggest books, with over 500 talks, workshops and performances touching upon subjects as diverse as history, politics, sport, food and fashion.
50 Years of Monty Python
Monty Python’s Flying Circus first aired on the BBC in October 1969, continuing for four seasons before the much-loved comedy troupe embarked on their big screen success.
100 years of Leeds United
2019 – 2020
Leeds United will be celebrating its Centenary Season 2019-2020; the club is officially 100 years on 17 October 2019. A host of events and activities will take place to celebrate the club's rich heritage; further details will be announced on the club's website.
275th anniversary of York Theatre Royal
York’s historic Theatre Royal will be celebrating its 275th anniversary year in 2019. The building, which dates back to the 18th century, is a patchwork quilt of many periods – originally built over a 12th century hospital with changes over the years giving the theatre a Georgian interior, Victorian façade, 1960s poured concrete addition and now the recent transformation of the Grade II listed Theatre Royal into a building fit to serve a 21st century audience with improved access and flexibility.
Attractions, Exhibitions and Restaurants_____________________________________________________
Regeneration in central Leeds
Leeds’ iconic Grade I-listed Kirkgate Market sits shoulder to shoulder with the jaw-dropping architecture of the city’s newest retail addition, Victoria Gate; now the George Street development will showcase the area’s beautiful architecture and regenerate this must-see historic zone. Leeds Playhouse’s redevelopment will ensure accessibility for everyone, with a new entrance that embraces the city and versatile, envonmentally-focused spaces that facilitate diverse work.
Koffmann & Mr White’s, Bath
12th October 2018
New venture by acclaimed chefs Pierre Koffmann and Marco Pierre White, set within Bath's historic Abbey Hotel. Having amassed six Michelin stars between them, the duo have joined forces to bring their take on affordable classic food to Bath. The restaurant will offer casual all day French and English cuisine.
New Islamic collections galleries, British Museum, London
From 18 October 2018
The British Museum’s new Albukhary Foundation Galleries display its outstanding collections of the Islamic world in engaging new ways, underscoring the cultural significance, breadth and impact of this vast region. Stunning works of art sit alongside everyday objects including musical instruments, games, ceramics and traditional dress, representing an area stretching from West Africa to Southeast Asia since the seventh century. Together they celebrate the peoples of the Islamic world, and explore the ideas, technologies and interactions that shaped their culture.
Memsahib Gin & Tea Bar, Cheltenham
The owners of East India Café, an award-winning Anglo-Indian restaurant in Regency Cheltenham, are launching what is believed to be the world’s first gin and tea bar. The Memsahib Gin & Tea Bar will serve 55 gins sourced from around the globe, its own distilled gin and a range of teas and spices. The bar taps into Cheltenham’s Anglo-Indian heritage with décor, food and drink inspired by the 19th-century British Raj period, a time when many Anglo-Indian women settled in Cheltenham. The Memsahib Gin & Tea Bar will have a soft launch in October, followed by the official launch in November.
Idris Elba to launch new cocktail bar, London
Hollywood actor and Hackney local Idris Elba is co-launching The Parrot, a luxury new cocktail bar at the Waldorf Hilton hotel on Aldwych. Elba is opening the bar with twins Lee (Hollywood’s ‘go-to guy’ within the celebrity world) and Nicky (a professional drummer) Caulfield as co-founders. With the promise of “A-list surprises” such as a hidden cocktail menu, regular, unannounced secret shows and an exclusive guest list, it looks like Elba and the Caulfield brothers are planning to cash in on their celebrity connections. There will be live music every night, and Elba will occasionally take to the decks under the name DJ Driss. The Parrot will also be the first bar in London to offer its own chauffeur-driven car, an Aston Martin branded with The Parrot logo.
Peter Street Kitchen launches, Manchester
13 October 2018
Peter Street Kitchen brings a game-changing Japanese-Mexican fusion ‘shared dining’ experience to Manchester. Dishes will predominantly be small plates for sharing – think shredded crab with spicy ginger mayonnaise tostadas or king crab tempura with ponzu. The restaurant is part of a multi-million-pound refurb of Manchester’s five-star Edwardian Hotels-owned Radisson Edwardian Blu, and its launch coincides with the opening of the hotel’s new bar and lounge, Rikyu. The small-plates fusion concept has already proved successful in London, where Edwardian Hotels has three Kitchens. Soft launch 13 – 17 October 2018.
New luxury retail development at The O2, London
20 October 2018
ICON Outlet will be a £185 million designer outlet village with around 85 stores beneath The O2’s famous dome. The development will be self-contained and won’t affect existing leisure and retail outlets.
Roald Dahl Museum (re-opening), Buckinghamshire
From 20 October 2018
The Roald Dahl Museum in Great Missenden, the village where Dahl lived and wrote, has re-opened its Willy-Wonka-style doors following flooding in May. Featuring three interactive galleries exploring real-life influences on the writer’s work, it also houses his quirky archive and world-famous Writing Hut. The Museum’s trails allow you to walk in the author’s footsteps, exploring local places that inspired him and appeared in his stories, while its newly rebuilt Story Centre aims to inspire your own writing and story-making. On 24 November Great Missenden Christmas Festival will add seasonal stalls, old-fashioned fairground music and rides into the mix, offering a day out bursting with festivity and fun.
Transformed visitor experience at Windsor Castle, Berkshire
A multi-million-pound investment to improve the visitor experience at Windsor Castle is scheduled for completion at the end of 2018. When the work is finished, visitors will be able to: have a cup of tea in the 14th-century Undercroft, which will be opened to the public for the first time as the castle’s first café; enter the castle via the Georgian Entrance Hall, which has a much grander feel than the current entrance; and choose from a series of thematic routes through the State Apartments. The castle is open to visitors throughout the work, which started in 2017.
Inner-city beach huts, Bristol
Following the success of their quirky indoor caravan park, independent Bristol enterprise Towed Town Camping is launching a collection of beach huts in a warehouse. The new venture takes the seaside sleepover to urban south Bristol with a collection of cosy beach huts, ideal for parties of friends. Towed Town Camping’s original campground features five up-cycled retro caravans on fake-grass lawns with sun umbrellas and deck chairs and a games area - all under one industrial warehouse roof.
The Upside Down House, The Triangle Bournemouth
An extraordinary and exciting new building, the Upside Down House, arrived on November 10th in Bournemouth’s buzzy and vibrant Triangle. A hybrid of street art and experiential entertainment, this inverted wooden structure is the first of its kind in the UK, providing visitors with a zero-gravity illusion. Walk on the ceiling, go downstairs to go up, do handstands on the sofa and let your imagination run riot over this two storey installation, which will be open until June 2019.
Open 10am – 8pm Monday to Friday, when tickets are £4 and 10am – 9pm Saturdays and Sundays, when tickets are £5. Children under 3 are free.
Vegan pop-up restaurant The Meet, Clapham, London
Soft launch 25 October, official opening 2 November 2018
The Meet will offer indulgent, plant-based comfort food and playful vegan cocktails in the urban-industrial setting of Fu Manchu’s railway arch in Clapham North. Dominic Taylor, formerly Executive Chef of London favourite The Jam Tree, will use the latest in meat-free alternatives to create delights that will appeal to committed vegans, experimental foodies and the health-conscious alike: from sharing plates and burgers to bottomless vegan brunches and Sunday roasts. Open Tuesday to Sunday, with 50% off food 25 October to 2 November to celebrate World Vegan Day on 1 November.
Boxpark Wembley, London
First there was Shoreditch. Then there was Croydon. Next up, Wembley. Boxpark, the pop-up street food and shopping destination created out of shipping containers, is opening a brand new site on Olympic Way in Wembley Park, near Wembley’s giant entertainment venues. The new venture will feature 29 independent food and drinks traders and will aim to host a year-round programme of creative events.
White Peak Distillery, Ambergate
Inside a former Victorian wire-works in Ambergate, one of the largest commercial whisky distilleries in the whole of England has just opened to the public. White Peak Distillery, which has been open a matter of weeks, includes a tasting room and shop and, whilst the first whisky won’t be ready until 2021, their award-winning Derbyshire dry gin is. You can book tours and get tastings of this spirit, inspired by the berries, hedgerows and flowers of Ambergate’s Shining Cliff Woods, now.
Tours are £12 and are on Thursdays at 11am, Fridays at 11am and 3pm and, soon to be offered on Saturdays.
Market Hall Victoria
The abandoned arcaded bays of Victoria’s Terminus Place has been transformed into a foodie hub. Market Hall Victoria which opened on November 12th showcases a diverse and eclectic offering of food and drink across three floors with eleven kitchens, a coffee shop, and three bars championing independent British-made beers & spirits. The former Edwardian shopping arcade will also play host to a 100 person drinking roof terrace from spring 2019.
The Auckland Tower, County Durham
Designed by architect Niall McLaughlin, the Auckland Tower opened on October 20th and is a new visitor attraction, which offers panoramic views of County Durham. The 29 metre tower boasts a 15 metre-high viewing platform and its unique design reflects the history of Prince Bishops of Durham, who once ruled the land as proverbial Kings of the North. It is part of the Aukland Project which will see the regeneration of Auckland Castle, a Spanish Art Gallery and Faith Museum, in addition to a new hotel.
Auckland Tower is now open daily 10am until 4pm.Tickets for the Tower are £3 per adult and £1 per child.
New Rockfish restaurant, Exeter
December 2018/January 2019
The newest Rockfish restaurant on England’s Seafood Coast will open late December/early January, in Exeter Quays. The waterside new-build restaurant will have a bar and an open kitchen with wood fires to cook the seafood over. The seafood will come from the nearby renowned Brixham Fish Market. Acclaimed chef Mitch Tonks’ award-winning small seafood chain of restaurants specialises in sustainable seafood.
Women in Photography: A History of British Trailblazers, Surrey
30 January – 2 June 2019
This exhibition at Woking’s The Lightbox will present the first comprehensive historical survey of female photographers working in Britain in over 30 years. From Anna Atkins’ early innovations to Dorothy Bohm’s documentation of 1960s London, and Sarah Lucas’s contemporary self-portraiture of in the 1990s, Britain’s long tradition of trailblazing women in the medium will be celebrated in around 70 works lent by leading museums and galleries - including Turner Prize winners and nominees and Venice Biennale exhibitors.
The Royal Photographic Society moves to Bristol
After 38 years in Bath, the Royal Photographic Society is moving to Bristol’s Paintworks in the city’s creative quarter. The new RPS HQ will include a 102-seater auditorium for lectures and film screenings, exhibition spaces and an education centre, and sits opposite the new Martin Parr Foundation, a gallery, events space and archive by the world-renowned Magnum photographer.
New English National Parks Experience Collection launches
2019 marks the 70th Anniversary of the National Parks and on January 31st the organisation is launching 75 new immersive visitor experiences across nine of its Parks. Carefully curated by local experts, these authentic experiences celebrate the extraordinary and the everyday of our unique living landscapes. So whether it’s kayaking in the Norfolk Broads, going on a spice trail in the Lake District or climbing in the Peak District, there’s something for everyone.
Mariage Frères, Covent Garden
The world’s most exclusive purveyor of luxury teas and France’s oldest tea house, Mariage Frères, opened its first UK tea emporium this January. Bringing tea savoir-faire to the capital, the brand’s largest branch to date is housed in a beautiful five-storey listed Georgian townhouse on Covent Garden’s King Street. Offering the largest collection of teas in the world, from vintage and rare to fruit and herbal, the UK flagship of Mariage Frères boasts a stunning retail space, a restaurant specialising in tea gastronomy, tea museum and two private event spaces.
Tre, Pol & Pen farm shop and kitchen, Cornwall
New farm shop and kitchen Tre, Pol & Pen is open seven days a week, serving the best locally-sourced fresh produce from the Tamar Valley and South West. Its butchers prepare the finest cuts direct from the surrounding Landue Estate, the delicatessen is packed with local cheeses, and the kitchen serves freshly-prepared breakfasts, lunches, cream teas and cakes daily. At the site’s heart is a full-sized pizza oven baking seasonal Neo-Neapolitan pizzas daily, using fresh ingredients from across the region. Tre, Pol & Pen will host seasonal markets and craft workshops featuring artisans from throughout Cornwall, and is working with local producers to offer exclusive lines including non-homogenized milk and beeswax wraps. It also has one of the largest zero-waste dispensers in Cornwall.
Gourmet foraging experience, Cumbria
From 3 March
The Forest Side, the Michelin-starred and Good Food Guide Top 50 restaurant-with-rooms in Grasmere, is launching an immersive foodie experience with its one-night gourmet foraging package. Head chef Kevin Tickle and his team will lead a Land Rover excursion into the surrounding fields, fells and woodland, to source the freshest of local foodstuffs. Previously Head Forager at Simon Rogan’s L’Enclume, Tickle will share his encyclopaedic knowledge of spring crops including wild garlic, scarlet elf cup mushrooms and sweet cicely. A Michelin-starred picnic will be served, and six- and ten-course seasonal menus offered back in the hotel - where guests can further explore their provenance in the kitchen garden. From £229.
Charles Rennie Mackintosh: making the Glasgow Style, Liverpool
15 March - 26 August 2019
This major exhibition at the Walker Art Gallery will span the lifetime of designer and architect Charles Rennie Mackintosh, who pioneered Britain’s only Art Nouveau ‘movement’, The Glasgow Style. This striking design approach centred on the Glasgow School of Art (which Mackintosh designed) between about 1890 and 1920, and became popular and influential internationally; the exhibition will showcase more than 250 examples, from stained glass and metalwork to home furnishings and architecture. Adults £9, children £2.
New opening for England’s “finest woodland gardens” Horsham, West Sussex
The 200 acre estate at Leonardslee Lakes & Gardens is set open after an 18 month closure in which the gardens and house underwent a massive restoration. Dubbed the ‘finest woodland gardens in England’, the beautiful landscaped Grade I listed gardens, were first planted in 1801 and boast outstanding spring displays of rhododendrons, azaleas, camellias, magnolias and bluebells. Since 2017, they’ve been restored in a project has described as the largest of its kind since Heligan. Visitors can explore a wide range of features including the elegant 19th-century Italianate-style Mansion House, listed Grade II for architectural merit, the unique dolls’ house exhibition - and the rare colony of wallabies, wildfowl and huge carp in the seven ponds. http://www.leonardsleegardens.co.uk
Henry Moore: The Helmet Heads, London
6 March - 23 June
This new exhibition at the Wallace Collection will be the first to explore British Modernist sculptor Henry Moore's fascination with armour, and will examine how the museum’s own collection inspired his striking and acclaimed series, Helmet Heads. These celebrated works of the late 1930s will be displayed together in the show for the very first time.
MK Gallery, Milton Keynes
Opened 16 March
MK Gallery forms a creative hub for Milton Keynes. Designed by 6a Architects, the masterminds behind Peckham’s incredible South London Gallery, it builds upon the original MK Gallery which was constructed in the late 1990s and is inspired by the city’s original grid as well as the geometries of the adjacent Campbell Park. The completed development provides five exhibition galleries, with a total of 500 square metres of exhibition space; a large learning and community studio and The Sky Room, a flexible auditorium on the upper floor with 150 retractable seats and views over Campbell Park and the countryside. The inaugural exhibition, The Lie of the Land, utilizes all five galleries and features the work of 85 artists, architects and designers, including Thomas Gainsborough, J.M.W Turner and Joseph Paxton, Yinka Shonibare MBE, Jeremy Deller and Bridget Riley. Admission Free
North Hertfordshire Museum
North Hertfordshire Museum is a brand new museum next door to the completely refurbished Town Hall in Brand Street, Hitchin. Displaying collections from the old Letchworth and Hitchin museums and many items from around the District that have never before been on public display, the museum is now partially open, with more to be unveiled in the upcoming months. One of the first exhibitions is a retrospective of-renowned sculptor and local resident, John W Mills whose best known works include the National Firefighters Memorial, outside St Paul’s Cathedral in London, unveiled in 1991 and the Monument to the Women of World War Two in Whitehall, unveiled in 2005. Museum is open Tuesday to Thursday. Entry is free and the John W. Mills: sculptor to the nation, exhibition runs from 23rd February to 27th April 2019
Newly restored Painted Hall at Old Royal Naval College, London
From 23 March
The Old Royal Naval College’s Painted Hall in Greenwich, acknowledged as one of the most spectacular and important baroque interiors in Europe, has reopened following a two-year, multi-million-pound conservation project. The highly-decorated hall, which has been described as the ‘Sistine Chapel of the UK’, will be complemented by a brand new visitor experience, café and shop and the site’s new Sackler Gallery, where visitors can discover how the hall was created and who its decor depicts.
The Clive, Ludlow
The Clive Arms, just west of Ludlow, is to reopen in late April following an extensive refurbishment. This will see the creation of a new open plan restaurant and bar offering, as well as an additional three bedrooms for hotel guests and the creation of an impressive outdoor dining area. Previously known as The Clive Restaurant with Rooms, the main building has been closed for the renovation since January. The relaunch will take the Georgian coaching inn, part of the Earl of Plymouth’s Oakly Park Estate, into a new era as a genuine ‘farm to fork’ dining destination. The new layout includes a main 40 cover restaurant with a separate cosy snug and further dining opportunities offered by extended bar areas. A new garden and courtyard area to the rear of the building will provide year-round eating and socialising areas. Rooms start from £144 a night with the new suites starting from £194 a night on a B&B basis.
The Produce Hall, Stockport
The Produce Hall is the latest addition to the food hall-style casual dining concept. Set within a Grade-II listed building, The Produce Hall opens the first week of April, with ten traders offering different specialties - largely comfort food - and plenty of character with original beams, pillars and windows exposed. It is the latest development to hit Stockport, which is now thriving on the success of some clever heritage projects and stand out food and drink at places like Where The Light Gets In.
UNESCO Cities of Literature, Norwich and Nottingham
Cultural leaders from 28 countries will come to the UK in May 2019 for a global gathering of the UNESCO Cities of Literature. It will be the first time that the prestigious international forum has taken place in England and will see Norwich and Nottingham, two of the UK’s four Cities of Literature hold a week-long programme of cultural events. The two-stage gathering - Nottwich 2019 - will bring together writers and practitioners from across the world and act as a catalyst for future artistic collaboration.
Tender Touches, AMP Gallery London
17 May - 30 June
Taking the food-based practice of artist Inês Neto dos Santos as a starting point, Tender Touches will present an immersive installation in an unconventional space where everything – from the food to the furniture and the cutlery – is an artwork. Blurring the lines between the gallery, the studio and the dining room, Tender Touches will host a series of talks, supper clubs and performances, taking place among new commissions by a group of international emerging artists. The food menu, designed and cooked by Neto dos Santos, will be inspired by her interest in sustainable food practices such as preservation and fermentation. A further eleven artists will create new commissions that make up every element of the cafe. Taking place at AMP Gallery in Peckham, the exhibition and is one of four projects in Open Space’s 2019 programme, which explores the idea of Space without spaces. Entry is free.
New National Trust working holidays, nationwide
May – September 2019
The National Trust is introducing some new working holidays in 2019, including: river restoration at Croome, Worcestershire (19 – 25 May, £160); plant life surveying in Woolbeding, West Sussex (22 – 29 June, £170); and the chance to learn basic navigation skills as you help rangers with dry-stone walling, woodland management and footpath repair in Wasdale, Cumbria (14 – 21 September, £170).
New Chef’s Table experience at Freemasons at Wiswell, Ribble Valley
This proper pub – a high roller on the Top 50 Gastropubs list – is already a popular pilgrimage for foodies across the country. The Freemasons is now expanding with new luxury rooms as well as a redeveloped kitchen with new Chef’s Table experience, located inside the new state-of-the-art kitchen. The new accommodation, which includes duplex rooms, will offer luxury with views across the Ribble Valley – even from the bathtub. Freemasons chef owner Steven Smith will also be putting on guest chef nights as a part of the new Chef’s Table experience.
Durham Cathedral’s Central Tower reopens after conservation
After years of essential conservation on the UNESCO World Heritage Site – visitors can once again take the challenge of climbing the 325 steps to the top for magnificent views over Durham City. Durham Cathedral's central tower reopened to the public following a three-year renovation project. The 216ft (66m) structure had been closed since November 2015 to allow for the restoration of stonework and the installation of a viewing platform.
Keith Haring, Liverpool
14 June – 10 November 2019
Tate Liverpool will host the first major UK exhibition of artist and activist Keith Haring (1958–1990), whose graffiti- and Pop Art-inspired work was a major and defining component of the New York art scene in the 1980s. Haring worked with contemporaries Andy Warhol and Jean-Michel Basquiat towards a common goal of creating art for the many - using new media and public spaces, not galleries. His art responds to issues including racism, homophobia, drug addiction, AIDS awareness, capitalism and the environment.
UK premiere for Van Gogh: The Immersive Experience, York
5 July 2019 to 5 January 2020
A new immersive experience is set to make its UK debut this summer in York city centre following successful runs in Brussels and Naples. Van Gogh: The Immersive Experience will open in York St Mary’s on Castlegate and will enable visitors to step inside the paintings, world and mind of the 19th century impressionist painter. The multimedia experience tells Van Gogh’s life and his creations through projections, recreations and interactive elements of his artworks around the historic exhibition space. Over 200 of his works are featured, but rather than remaining static, the huge projections of paintings come alive with digital animation and an emotive soundtrack, to create a world where the visitor sees through the eyes of Vincent Van Gogh for a 35 minute, fully immersive 360 degree experience. Admission prices are £13.00 for adults, £11.00 for concessions and students and £9.00 for children. Family tickets are available for £38.00 (two adults and two children).
Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel: A Different View, Winchester
5 July – 29 September
The UK premiere of this acclaimed, international exhibition - allows for the first time ever an unprecedented closeness to the magnificent works, normally 22 metres above visitors’ heads.
Officially licensed by the Vatican Museums, the frescoes have been photographed and reproduced at high resolution and transferred to special fabric webs. This technique allows a true-to-life reproduction of the ceiling and gives visitors a unique opportunity for an otherwise impossible close-up view.
The exhibition is split across the three Winchester venues due to its sheer size: the visitor journey will begin at City Space on the ground floor of Winchester Discovery Centre, continue upstairs in The Gallery and finish at the 13th century Great Hall, home of the symbolic Medieval Round Table, where a giant 6 metre x 6 metre panel of The Last Judgment is on display.
Turning Tides Festival at The Tide Greenwich Peninsula
5-7 and 12-14 July
London’s first-ever riverside linear park has arrived on Greenwich Peninsula. From public art installations by exciting artists to landscaped trails for running, walking and meditation, the Tide has something for everyone. The first five kilometres of The Tide has been created by the co-designers creators of Manhattan’s High Line. Expect lush planting, silver birches and grasses interspersed with beautiful serene architectural shapes and spaces. It will be hosting the Turning Tides Festival, in July, where you can enjoy a free festival of live music, art, film, wellness and shoreline feasts. Find out more here: https://www.greenwichpeninsula.co.uk/the-tide/
New Pleasure Garden, an audio garden installation at Harewood, Yorkshire
Over thirty audio interventions have been hidden across the Walled Garden at Harewood House for visitors this summer, as Pleasure Garden, an interactive ‘listening’ garden created by Australian musician Genevieve Lacey, opens to the public. Inspired by the story and music of the 17th century Dutch musician, composer and improviser, Jacob van Eyck, the Walled Garden will be a place of musical play inviting visitors to move, explore, sit and listen to music which comes from high in the trees to low amongst the plants. Whilst visiting Harewood, there are a whole host of activities to get involved with. Enjoy the exhibition theme in the House of Useful/Beautiful: Why Craft Matters (23 March-1 September). Between 6-7 July you can also get hands on with lots of craft workshops taking place at Harewood, from the like of Wallace and Gromit creators, Aardman Studios in Model Making with Aardman Studios See Make it Harewood for more information.
William Blake, Tate Britain
Sept 11-Feb 2
Biggest exhibition of his work since 2001, with more than 300 pieces.
Bath Abbey Footprint
Footprint is an ongoing project to restore and improve Bath Abbey. The £19.3 million programme includes the addition of new meeting, catering and toilet facilities, a new song school, the installation of more-environmentally friendly features, repairs to the abbey floor, and the creation of a new Discovery Centre that uses innovative technology and items from the Abbey’s collection to tell the Abbey’s story.
Two major openings at The Auckland Project, County Durham
2019 will mark two major openings at The Auckland Project, a world-class visitor destination centred around art, faith and heritage, in Bishop Auckland, County Durham. First, 900-year-old Auckland Castle will re-open to the public following a multi-million-pound conservation programme, allowing visitors to step inside the former residence of the Prince Bishops of Durham and explore their lives at the Castle over the centuries. Then, the UK’s first museum dedicated to the arts and culture of Spain will launch, inspired by a cycle of paintings by Francisco de Zurbarán, which have been housed in Auckland Castle for more than 250 years. This will add to The Auckland Project’s Mining Art Gallery, which opened in 2017 and the purpose-built welcome centre, Auckland Tower, which launched in 2018.
New medicine galleries at the Science Museum, London
The Science Museum’s medicine collections will get a brand new home when the medicine galleries open after a £24 million investment. On the totally transformed first floor of the museum, the galleries will reveal personal stories about how our lives have been transformed by changes in medicine and health over the last 400 years. Based on the extraordinary collections of Henry Wellcome and the Science Museum, this is the one of the most significant medicine collections in the world.
New visitor centre at St Albans Cathedral, Hertfordshire
Built on the oldest site of continuous Christian worship in Britain, St Albans Cathedral continues to develop as it opens a new Welcome Centre in 2019. It’s part of a Heritage Lottery Fund-supported transformational project, Alban, Britain’s First Saint. As well as delivering the new centre, the project will tell the cathedral’s story in a fresh new way, improve access and create new education and visitor facilities.
New sculpture garden at The Hepworth Wakefield, Yorkshire
The Hepworth Wakefield gallery has been granted planning permission to create The Hepworth Riverside Gallery Garden, a landscaped garden with sculptures that will be free for all to enjoy. The ambitious garden will fill the site linking the Sir David Chipperfield-designed gallery with neighbouring Victorian mill buildings. Award-winning garden and landscape designer Tom Stuart-Smith has designed a modern, romantic garden with year-round interest – think Japanese flowering cherry and snowdrops in spring, complex meadow planting for summer, and sculptural alliums for wintry drama. Scattered throughout will be a number of sites for seating and outdoor sculptures. Work is expected to begin in January 2019, pending funding, with the garden slated to open in summer 2019.
New venue Magazine, North Greenwich, London
The capital will gain a stylish new event space when Magazine London opens in the Greenwich Peninsula in summer 2019. The purpose-built destination will be the largest of its kind in the city, with versatile interior spaces that can accommodate up to 3,000 people plus a further 7,000 in its outdoor showground. Access will also be available to The Pylon - a striking site that resembles an upside-down electricity pylon, inspired by Alex Chinneck’s famous sculpture. The venue will be easily accessible by Underground, road and river.
Strawberry Field development, Liverpool
The famous Strawberry Field will be brought back to life in 2019 with a new development that will transform it into an exhibition space, a café, gardens and most importantly, a place that offers training and support for adults with learning difficulties. The Salvation Army site at Strawberry Field was where John Lennon took refuge during his turbulent childhood; a new exhibition will explore the place’s history, the Beatles’ song that made it famous and Lennon’s early life.
Major refurbishment at Downton Abbey farm, Cotswolds
In 2017, Cogges Manor Farm – which played a leading part in the incredibly popular Downton Abbey series – secured Heritage Lottery Funding to improve the farm for visitors and volunteers. The next step is to secure match funding. They plan to find new ways to tell the stories of those who’ve lived and worked on the farm over the last thousand years, culminating in the building of a Saxon roundhouse. There are also plans to create an education space in the Barley Barn, new toilets and a new dedicated and accessible space for volunteers.
Margate Caves reopen
Having been closed since 2004, Margate Caves will reopen to the public in 2019 following a lengthy campaign to save their site from redevelopment. Originally dug as a chalk quarry in the 17th and 18th centuries, the Caves have been welcoming visitors since 1863. Funded by the Heritage Lottery and Big Lottery Fund and boosted by local fundraising, the site will now be transformed into a visitor centre including community rooms, a café, a shop and insights on all aspects of the Caves. The building has been designed by award-winning Kent-based architects Kaner Olette, while a specialist conservator is bringing the site's vibrant murals back to life after years of damage.
Major developments at Slimbridge Wildfowl and Wetland Trust, Cotswolds
2019 – 2020
Slimbridge 2020, a £6 million project supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, will bring 12 new visitor attractions to WWT Slimbridge, including a huge free-flying bird aviary with a learning zone, a recreation of a Scott-era research hut on the Russian tundra, and opening Sir Peter Scott’s home to the public for the first time; Scott was the son of “Scott of the Antarctic’, an international leader in conservation, and the founder of the WWT. Construction begins in 2018 on a new area within a huge aviary to show free-flying birds close up, set to open in 2019. Sir Peter Scott’s home will also be opened to the public for the first time, giving visitors a glimpse into the life of one of the country’s foremost conservation visionaries and allowing them to get close to wildlife in a number of new hides.
The Royal Photographic Society moves to Bristol
After 38 years in Bath, the Royal Photographic Society is moving to Bristol’s Paintworks in the city’s creative quarter. The new RPS HQ will include a 102-seater auditorium for lectures and film screenings, exhibition spaces and an education centre, and sits opposite the new Martin Parr Foundation, a gallery, events space and archive by the world-renowned Magnum photographer.
St George’s Hall re-opens, Bradford
Bradford’s Grade II-listed venue will re-open with an enlarged and sympathetically decorated front-of-house and improved sightlines and comfort in the auditorium. The heritage venue seats more than 1,500 people and has hosted the likes of Mumford & Sons, Paul Weller, Jools Holland and Morrissey, as well as top stand-up comedians such as Sarah Millican, Jimmy Carr, Billy Connolly and Jason Manford. St George’s Hall also hosts one of the UK’s longest running orchestral seasons, with the Hallé as resident orchestra.
The Art of Perspective: JMW Turner’s early architectural paintings and engravings exhibition at Blenheim Palace, Oxfordshire
9 February – April 2019
Blenheim Palace is hosting a temporary exhibition of JMW Turner’s work. The Art of Perspective: JMW Turner’s early architectural paintings and engravings will be the largest collection of Turner Paintings ever to visit Oxfordshire. Artworks will be exhibited in the State Rooms and set among the priceless heritage of the Palace – it’s an unmissable opportunity to see the artist’s paintings set within a landscape that Turner painted.
Christian Dior: Designer of Dreams, the V&A, London
2 February 2018 - 14 July 2019
February will see the opening of the biggest, most comprehensive exhibition on the fashion House of Dior ever mounted in Britain. The show will trace the history and impact of one of the 20th century’s most influential couturiers and the six artistic directors who have succeeded him, from 1947 to the present day, through over 500 objects: from rare Haute Couture and vintage cosmetics to period illustrations and Christian Dior’s personal possessions. For the first time it will also explore Dior’s fascination with British culture, including grand houses and gardens, ocean liners and Savile Row suits, and investigate the house’s collaborations with British manufacturers. There will also be a focus on early British clients, including author Nancy Mitford, ballet dancer Margot Fonteyn and the young Princess Margaret.
New Museum of Whitby Jet, Yorkshire
W. Hamond is the world’s oldest purveyor of Whitby jet jewellery and ornaments, so it’s only natural that the jeweller should open the new museum on the town’s famous and historic jet industry. Located in a beautifully restored Wesleyan Chapel in Whitby’s old town, the museum will explore the geology, history and legacy of the famous Yorkshire gemstone through antique jet and specimens, including the world’s largest piece of Whitby rough jet (a jaw-dropping 6.5 metres (21ft) long). The opening will coincide with the 200th birthday of Whitby jet’s biggest patron Queen Victoria, and on-site dining is provided at Albert’s - named after the consort she mourned - which specialises in local seafood.
New Escape Room at Lumley Castle, Durham
630-year-old Lumley Castle, at Chester-le-Street, has become the first historic site in the UK to open an escape room. Visitors to one of County Durham’s oldest hotels can now take part in a race against time to lift the curse surrounding a former resident. In the castle’s former beer cellar, the escape room gives players the chance to unlock the mystery by solving a series of clues and puzzles – but they only have an hour in which to lift the curse surrounding Lily of Lumley and solve the challenge.
www.lumleycastle.com www.escapedurham.co.uk .
Whitby Abbey re-opening following revamp, Yorkshire
Striking Whitby Abbey closed in November 2018 for a £1.6 million reinvestment programme. It will re-open in spring 2019 with a newly designed museum and dramatic new exhibition, new interpretation points across its headland location, a sensory trail for families and a new coffee shop.
Redevelopment of Hanningtons Estate, Brighton
Once the home of Hanningtons department store, or ‘The Harrods of Brighton’, Hanningtons Estate is undergoing a huge transformation under new owners Redevco. Already home to several well-known high street brands, the Estate will blend old and new styles to attract diverse retailers and create a place for visitors to explore, meet, eat, drink and shop. As well as providing modern stores, cafes and restaurants, apartments and offices, the plans include the creation of a new, more prominent entrance to Brighton’s famous Lanes.
New visitor experience at The Moors National Park Centre, North York Moors
A new visitor experience including a fully immersive Land of Iron exhibition will launch in the North York Moors National Park visitor centre. The new exhibition will explore how the iconic landscapes were formed and the connections between the plants and animals that thrive there. Visitors will experience the dramatic story of Victorian ironstone extraction, the ingenuity of the moorland railways and the sometimes harsh realities of the people who shared in this short-lived ‘gold rush’ of the North York Moors. A range of interpretation across key Land of Iron sites will complement the display.
Major expansion for the Cotswolds Distillery
The first whisky producers in the Cotswolds have embarked on an expansion programme featuring a new 4,000+ square foot purpose-built visitor centre. It will make the tour and tasting experience more comfortable for visitors, with a larger shop, café, more tasting rooms and an exhibition space.
New Fotografiska photography art gallery, London
Fotografiska will be London’s largest permanent space dedicated to photography when it opens in Whitechapel. The new art gallery will take up the ground floor area of a new building near the acclaimed Whitechapel Gallery. As well as an enormous exhibition space, the gallery will have a cinema, two restaurants, a café and a bar. It will be the first overseas branch of the Swedish Fotografiska organisation, which has hosted exhibitions by photographers such as Annie Leibovitz and Helmut Newton in its Stockholm gallery.
Stoke Mandeville Heritage Centre, Buckinghamshire
A new heritage centre at Stoke Mandeville Stadium will celebrate the village’s widely acknowledged status as the birthplace of the Paralympic movement. Linked to the nearby National Spinal Injuries Centre, the displays at the new centre will explore the life and work of Professor Ludwig Guttman (a neurosurgeon at Stoke Mandeville Hospital, known as the ‘Father of the Paralympics’), the history of the Spinal Injuries Centre, the journey from the 1948 Stoke Mandeville Games to the modern Paralympic Games, and the development of wheelchair sports.
Tattoo: British Tattoo Art Revealed, Bristol
16 March – 16 June 2019
M-Shed is exhibiting a ground-breaking, comprehensive history of British tattooing, featuring cutting-edge designers, leading academics and major private collectors. Tattoo: British Tattoo Art Revealed is the largest gathering of real objects and original tattoo artwork ever assembled in the UK, featuring over 400 original artworks, photographs and historic artefacts.
Van Gogh and Britain exhibition at Tate Britain, London
27 March – 11 August 2019
Tate has announced the largest exhibition of Vincent van Gogh’s work in the UK for nearly a decade – and the Tate’s first Van Gogh exhibition since 1947. Van Gogh and Britain will bring together 40 paintings of the artist’s most famous works, including one of the Sunflowers paintings and Starry Night on the Rhône. The exhibition will examine Van Gogh’s relationship with Britain – he lived in London in his early 20s – and the British art, literature and culture he was inspired by, from Constable to Dickens, as well as the British artists who were inspired by Van Gogh, such as Francis Bacon and Walter Sickert.
Three-tier high ropes course, Isle of Wight
A new large-scale high ropes course will launch in Sandown on the Isle of Wight. Sandown Sky Trail at Sandham Gardens, a bespoke-built course, will stand 13-metres (43ft) high overlooking the beachfront at Sandown. The family-friendly attraction will include a three-tier high-level course and zip rail. Heritage Attractions Ltd, which owns The Needles Landmark Attraction, has a 50-year lease with Sandown Town Council to develop the town’s Sandham Gardens and believes the development will provide the spark for a new phase of regeneration for the area. Plans for Sandham Gardens also include a high-spec adventure golf course, electric karts, enhanced catering and beach huts.
New Koala Creek enclosure at Longleat to host England’s only koalas, Wiltshire
Visitors to Longleat will be able to see six adorable southern koalas when Koala Creek opens. The indoor-outdoor enclosure will be the only place to see koalas in England, and the only place to see southern koalas in Europe. (There are two main subspecies of koala; the smaller northern variety and the southern koala which has much thicker fur and can weigh twice as much as their northern relatives.) Longleat is working with the Southern Australian Government and Adelaide’s Cleland Wildlife Park to launch an international breeding and awareness programme for Australia’s most iconic species. As part of the initiative, Longleat has developed a 4,000-tree eucalyptus plantation to feed the creatures. The koalas will be joined by a pair of Southern hairy-nosed wombats, who will live in glass-fronted burrows.
New five-day Peaky Blinders tour, northeast England
There’s a blinder of a tour in store for fans of the BAFTA award-winning TV show Peaky Blinders. Leading coach company Bakers Dolphin is encouraging travellers to don 1920s gangster garb for their new Peaky Blinder tour, which visits filming locations in Manchester, Arley Hall, Liverpool and Port Sunlight. The tour is led by Blue Badge Guide – and huge Peaky Blinders fan – Julie Kershaw, who graduated as the Institute of Tourist Guiding’s “Guide of the Year”, so holidaymakers know they’re in safe hands as they delve into the murky world of the Shelby TV crime family. Fans of Coronation Street can choose the tour of Coronation Street and MediaCity UK studios, another option from Bakers Dolphin’s new Autumn-Spring 2018-19 brochure.
Bear Wood at WildPlace Project, Bristol
Bear Wood is a new attraction for Bristol’s 150-acre suburban conservation park at WildPlace Project. A walkway will wind through seven and a half acres of woodland where brown bears will share a home with the project’s five European grey wolves. Lynx and wolverine will also roam the woodland, just as they would have done centuries ago. A ranger station, classroom, interpretation space and café will also be built, creating an immersive experience.
Silverstone Heritage Experience, Northamptonshire
A new visitor attraction opening at Silverstone will cover the heritage of the home of British Motor Racing. The permanent exhibition, housed in a refurbished World War II-hangar on the Silverstone circuit site, will use state-of-the-art interactive displays to tell the stories of people who have been involved in the site’s history, from medieval monks to modern racing drivers and engineers. The immersive show dome finale to the 2.5-hour experience will allow visitors to feel what it’s like to zoom around the track alongside their racing heroes. Tickets cost £20 (adult), £10 (child) and £16 (concession).
National Trust People’s Landscapes, Cheshire and UK-wide
Inspired by the 200th anniversary of the Peterloo Massacre in Manchester, the National Trust’s People's Landscapes programme will explore key sites where people came together to seek social change. Five Trust locations will host projects supported by contemporary artists including Bob & Roberta Smith and Jarvis Cocker, with Turner Prize-winner Jeremy Deller as artistic advisor. At Quarry Bank and Dunham Massey in Cheshire, Peterloo will be commemorated in a collaboration with artist family Grace Surman, Gary Winters and their children, to create a unique new artwork inspired by conversations with locals and visitors about rights, responsibilities, freedoms and the power to create change.
New Tofu-making workshops, Norwich
(Postponed to summer 2019)
The UK’s first shop-based micro soya dairy, Tofurei, is about to launch new tofu-making workshops to complement its range of vegan based food. Based in Norwich’s picturesque lanes, Tofurei incorporates a shop and café with a vegan deli counter offering soysages, burgers, loose tofu and a unique fresh tofu, all produced using their own Norfolk tofu. A range of workshops in its new premises will each last just over two hours, and showcase a fun, practical route to a dairy alternative. Costs include all materials and use of equipment, and you get to take home a litre of soya milk and a free set of ingredients for your next batch.
Redevelopment of Leeds Playhouse, Leeds
Leeds Playhouse (formerly known as the West Yorkshire Playhouse) is undergoing a £15 million redevelopment. The project will improve access to the theatre, cut its impact on the environment and create a new city-facing entrance, a restaurant and bar, and a studio theatre space in the undercroft.
New Bargate Quarter, Southampton
Southampton continues to be one of the UK cities “on the up”. Improvements to the Cultural Quarter, the creation of Ocean Village, the extension of West Quay Shopping and the arrival of some landmark accommodation have already added to its city-break appeal and fascinating history and heritage. Next up (and currently scheduled to be open for business in Autumn 2019) is the development of Bargate Quarter. The scheme will help uncover Southampton’s proud history 900 years after the Bargate Monument was built and bring an entirely new vibe to this part of the city, thanks to the introduction of a variety of carefully selected retail, food and beverage outlets.
Turner Contemporary to host Turner Prize 2019, Kent
October 2019 – January 2020
The Turner Contemporary gallery in Margate will host the famous Turner Prize in 2019. Both venue and event are named after the innovative landscape artist JMW Turner, who was a regular visitor to Margate and inspired by the east Kent coast. The gallery is built on the site of a boarding house where Turner stayed when he visited the seaside town. Margate was also the childhood home of Tracey Emin, whose controversial My Bed artwork was shortlisted for the prize in 1999. Exact dates TBC; the winner will be announced at a major awards ceremony in December 2019.
New Learn Forest Bathing amidst the Ancient Woodland of Puzzlewood in the Forest of Dean
Head to the Forest of Dean, one of the UK’s largest crown forests in the UK with over 40 square miles of mixed woodland. Book onto a 3-night course, led by qualified Forest Therapist, Catrina Greenwood, staying in the heart of the magical ancient woodland of Puzzlewood. Carina introduces guests to the practice’s powers; explaining how to perform four sensory invitations and practise special mindfulness and meditation techniques. She leads slow walks through the pristine woodlands and holds foraged tea ceremonies. Puzzlewood itself is one of the most inspiring often appearing on our screens as locations for TV dramas and films such as Doctor Who, Star Wars and Harry Potter Price for a 3-night Forest Bathing Weekend start from £175pp, based on up to four people staying in Puzzlewood Cottage or Puzzlewood Patch. Weekend breaks in 2020 run from April-June, then September – October.
Spring Wildlife Safaris at Tudor Farmhouse
A new collection of Spring Wildlife Safaris at Tudor Farmhouse in the Forest of Dean for 2020 will be available from and throughout March, April and Ma. The hotel will be offering six guided group walks with photographer, broadcaster and all-round wildlife detective Ed Drewitt, searching for bats, deer, badgers, foxes, mice, voles, hedgehogs and the elusive wild boar, before returning to the hotel to enjoy breakfast, afternoon tea or charcuterie boards.There are three different Wildlife Safaris to choose from; from sunrise walks witnessing a special Dawn Chorus, to afternoon and evening walks. Cost £60 per person, with overnight packages also available from £249, based on two sharing a double room on a B&B basis including two safari tickets.
Michael Caines restaurant, bar and cafe at new development on Exmouth Waterfront, Devon
The award-winning chef Michael Caines will join a new scheme that will see part of Exmouth waterfront transformed into a brand-new water sports facility for the community. Caines, who grew up in Exeter, will open a waterfront restaurant with a bar and café area very different to the fine dining experience at Lympstone Manor, his nearby hotel and Michelin starred restaurant, including offers to suit all tastes - from a casual dining restaurant to a dog-friendly café and healthy takeaway. The restaurant will use quality, locally sourced produce, including fish from the Exmouth docks and meat from local farms, and embrace seasonall menus, as well as an environmentally responsible approach to packaging, waste and water efficiency, heating, cooling and lighting.
PAULTONS Park, the home of Peppa Pig World,
1950’s Americana themed ‘Tornado Springs’ will become the largest ever themed attraction launch at the UK’s favourite family theme park. Tornado Springs’ is a creative imagining of a Midwest desert resort town set in the American heyday of the 1950’s covering over four acres and featuring over eight different rides and attractions. The concept has been developed exclusively by Paultons Park and is designed to appeal to a wide range of ages from 3 to 14, consolidating the park’s position as the top family leisure destination in the UK.
Films, Novels and Theatre__________________________________________________________________
17 October 2018 (UK release)
Peterloo, which stars Christopher Eccleston and Maxine Peake, is said to be Oscar-nominated director Mike Leigh’s biggest budget film to date. It tells the story of the 1819 Peterloo Massacre, in Manchester. Lincoln’s Steep Hill and the Cathedral Quarter were turned into a film set and a cast of more than 100 took park in scenes on the cobbled streets surrounding the cathedral and castle in the heart of historic Lincoln in July 2017. Crews also filmed at Gainsborough Old Hall, a magnificent medieval manor house, Essex’s Tilbury Fort, and Chatham Historic Dockyard, Kent.
Stan and Ollie
21 October 2018
This biography of famous comedy duo Laurel & Hardy’s last tour of the UK includes scenes filmed in Bristol, Worthing Lido and the Black Country Museum. John C Reilly and Steve Coogan star in the title roles. Released at the BFI London Film Festival 21 October 2018; wider UK release 11 January 2019.
21 November 2018
According to legend, heroic forest-dwelling outlaw Robin Hood was a highly skilled archer and swordsman who robbed from the rich to give to the poor. This new spin on the legend stars Taron Egerton from Kingsman: The Secret Service as Robin Hood, Jamie Foxx as Little John, Eve Hewson as Maid Marian, and Jamie Dornan as Will Scarlet, half-brother of Hood and husband of Marian. Robin Hood’s original stomping ground was Sherwood Forest in Nottinghamshire and the forest is still the setting for the annual Robin Hood Festival in early August – a medieval gala of entertainment, food and drink, activities, and live-action re-enactments, bringing Robin Hood’s exploits to life. (21 November 2018 is UK release date.)
Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald
16 November 2018
The second instalment of the Fantastic Beasts series follows the further adventures of Newt Scamander, with London and Wiltshire’s Lacock Abbey as key filming locations. (16 November 2018 is UK release date.)
Mary Poppins Returns
21 December 2018
It's 53 years since the original Mary Poppins popped onto our screens with her magical bag and flying umbrella. In 2018, she's back – played by Emily Blunt – to visit the grown-up Banks children in this Disney musical sequel, which takes the action forward to London in 1935. Meryl Streep, Colin Firth, Angela Lansbury and Dick Van Dyke (who starred in the original film) also feature in the cast. London filming locations include St Paul’s Cathedral, Buckingham Palace and the Bank of England. (21 December 2018 is UK release date.)
The Personal History of David Copperfield
Director Armando Iannucci’s new film is based on Charles Dickens’ most autobiographical novel and stars Tilda Swinton, Hugh Laurie and Ben Wishaw, with Dev Patel in the title role. Filming took place in King’s Lynn, Hull and Suffolk’s Bury St Edmunds, where a fully set-dressed Angel Hill stood in as a period coaching inn in London.
World premiere of Victoria by Northern Ballet
9 March 2019
Northern Ballet will premiere Victoria, a ballet by Cathy Marston, in spring 2019 – the 200th anniversary year of the birth of one of Britain’s most iconic monarchs, and the 50th anniversary year of Northern Ballet. The ballet tells Queen Victoria’s life story through the eyes of Beatrice, the monarch’s youngest child and lifelong companion. The world première takes place in Leeds on 9 March 2019 with performances until 16 March 2019, followed by a nationwide tour to include Sheffield, London, Leicester and Milton Keynes.
28 June 2019
The plot of a new film by Richard Curtis and Danny Boyle is being kept tightly under wraps, but it’s believed to be a Beatles-themed romantic comedy set in 1960s and/or 1970s Suffolk... Filming took place all over the county, including Halesworth, Dunwich, Shingle Street and Latitude Festival. It stars Lily James, Himesh Patel and Ana de Armas, and promises all sorts of cameos, including one by Ed Sheeran.
Mrs Lowry & Son
30 August 2019
LS Lowry biopic, starring Timothy Spall and Vanessa Redgrave - out on general release from 30 August in UK and Ireland.
All Creatures Great and Small' drama series
Now, Channel 5 has announced the return of All Creatures Great and Small, the TV series. Based on the real-life adventures of the Yorkshire vet James Herriot, it originally ran on BBC1 from 1978 to 1990, and is now being given a fresh interpretation by Channel 5. The production has not yet announced the casting for the lead role. Christopher Timothy played Herriot in the original series, which also starred Robert Hardy, Peter Davison, Lynda Bellingham and Carol Drinkwater. At its peak, All Creatures Great and Small pulled in audiences of more than 13 million. The new series will be created by Playground, the production company behind the hit dramas Howards End and Wolf Hall, with a promise to remain faithful to the books of Alf Wight, James Herriot’s real name.
Kynren this Summer.
29 June -14 September.
Set on a seven-and-a-half acre stage, 1,000 cast and crew immerse you in the award-winning production of a 2,000-year tale, the history of England. Don't miss the new Viking Village pre-show experience, which features an animal croft and working blacksmiths. Kynren shows take place on Saturday evenings. New for this year, is a the brand new Viking Village. Visit the cookhouse complete with its own vegetable patch and the woodworker’s cottage built into the hillside. Take a stroll along the stream and watch the past come to life at the working blacksmith’s forge where you’ll be able to see real chainmail being made. Don’t miss the village’s animal inhabitants like the impressive Highland cattle and the curly haired Wensleydale sheep.
Final act of Giants trilogy, Liverpool and Wirral
4–7 October 2018
One of the major highlights of the #Liverpool2018 programme is the return of the Giants spectacular. Royal de Luxe (considered the world’s leading street theatre company) first brought the 9-metre (30ft) Giants to the streets of Liverpool in 2012, and again in 2014, generating millions of pounds for the local economy. The third and final part of the story will take place in areas of both Liverpool and Wirral, and the theme will be Liverpool’s Dream.
Bigger venue for VegfestUK, London
27 – 28 October 2018
In a clear indication of the growing popularity of the vegan movement, VegfestUK London is expanding for 2018. VegfestUK celebrates the vegan lifestyle in a rock’n’roll festival atmosphere, with music, talks and, of course, delicious vegan food. VegfestUK London (27 – 28 October), one of the UK’s biggest vegan festivals, adds a whole new level to its existing layout to meet mounting demand from exhibitors and visitors. VegfestUK Bristol (26 – 27 May) also moved to a bigger venue. Tickets from £13.20 BOGOF, concessions £9 BOGOF.
Waltham Forest to be London’s first Borough of Culture
Waltham Forest has been named London’s first Borough of Culture, a new initiative from London Major Sadiq Khan. The Borough of Culture award aims to put culture at the heart of local communities, and show that culture is for everyone. Waltham Forest will deliver a year of exciting cultural activity, aiming to get 85 per cent of households to participate and attract half a million visits. Brent will take the title for 2020.
York Ice Trail
2 February 2019
Instead of taking place over a weekend in the busy run-up to Christmas, the next York Ice Trail – “the largest outdoor ice trail in the UK” – will now run for one day only in February. York city centre will be filled with more than 50 ice sculptures, including Squirt, the little turtle from Disney’s Finding Nemo, crowd favourite the York Dungeon Pillories, and a huge 2-metre (7-ft) -long full detail exterior of The Grand Hotel & Spa. For the grand finale, a large totem made of ice will be set alight as the evening draws in. Expect free children’s activities and an opportunity to have a go at carving ice sculptures. Some fab prizes will be up for grabs too.
New food festival at Rockcliffe Hall Hotel, County Durham
2 – 9 February 2019
Rockcliffe Hall’s new Festival of Food is an eight-day-long celebration of fine British cuisine, with some of the country’s top professional chefs. It kicks off with an artisan food fair, followed by a series of special lunches, dinners and food and wine events, and culminates in a black tie gala dinner. Renowned chefs such as Andrew Pern, James Mackenzie and Mark Jordan will join Rockcliffe Hall’s executive chefs, head sommelier and head gardener to host various dinners and events. Highlights include The World’s Best Sunday Dinner with Andrew Pern, Gardener’s Lunch and a tour of Rockcliffe’s kitchen gardens and potting sheds with head gardener Phil Mennell, a wine and food pairing masterclass, and a banquet celebrating the best produce of the North East. The event will raise money for Hospitality Action.
Rum & Reggae Festival, various locations
Winchester, 23 February; Portsmouth, 8 - 9 March; Colchester, 16 March; Kettering, 30 March and later dates
The Rum & Reggae Festival’s 19-date UK tour has begun, combining a diverse, global selection of rums with the smoothest reggae music. Guests will be given a pocket-sized Rum Atlas detailing the hand-picked selection of rare and craft rums on offer, from rounded, aged examples to interesting young blends. Alongside their tipples they’ll enjoy carnival dancers, cocktail demonstrations, Caribbean food and a wealth of live music and DJs. From £14.50 + booking fees.
Cricket World Cup, various locations
30 May – 14 July 2019
England and Wales host the Cricket World Cup for the fifth time in 2019. Hosting venues include Birmingham’s Edgbaston Cricket Ground, Bristol’s County Cricket Ground, Riverside Ground at Chester-Le-Street, Headingley in Leeds, The Oval and Lord’s in London, Old Trafford in Manchester, Trent Bridge in Nottingham, Southampton’s Rose Bowl, and Taunton’s County Ground.
New Yorkshire Sculpture International triennial
22 June – 29 September 2019
Four Yorkshire galleries have secured £750,000 funding from Arts Council England for a new large-scale triennial exhibition that celebrates sculpture in all its forms. The Henry Moore Institute, Leeds Art Gallery, the Hepworth Wakefield and Yorkshire Sculpture Park – which together form the Yorkshire Sculpture Triangle – will host Yorkshire Sculpture International every three years, starting in 2019. The triennial will be characterised by collaborative artistic programming, talent and audience development, new outdoor commissions, international commissioning partnerships, and grants for local-based artists. Announced so far: two major new public commission for Leeds and Wakefield city centres, by Ayşe Erkmen and Huma Bhahba respectively; and the display of newly commissioned and key works by leading international artists including Rashid Johnson, Wolfgang Laib, Tau Lewis, David Smith and Nobuko Tsuchiya. The curatorial theme put forward by British artist Phyllida Barlow is that ‘sculpture is the most anthropological of the artforms’.
New Great British Cycling Festival, Norwich
27 June – 30 June
This will be a sensational new elite sports and mass participation festival where a 100 mile closed road event will start and finish in Norwich City Centre and experience the same route, on the same day – Sunday 30th June - as the pros for the HSBC UK National Road Championships. The festival has many elements to it, including: the men’s and women’s national time trial championships (27 June),which start and finish on the Sandringham Estate; the men’s and women’s road race (30 June), which finish in Norwich; as well as a mass-participation amateur event and a family fun-ride in Norwich City Centre.
Manchester International Festival
4 – 21 July
Staged every two years at venues all over the city, Manchester International Festival (MIF) is the world’s first festival of original work and special events. This year’s programme includes an opening event that will see Yoko Ono gather people in Cathedral Gardens to send a message of peace, David Lynch taking over HOME for a season of cinema, art and music, Maxine Peake and Sarah Frankcom joining forces to celebrate one of pop culture’s most enigmatic figures, Nico, and world premieres of The Anvil by composer Emily Howard and writer Michael Symmons Roberts - marking the 200th anniversary of Peterloo, and Tree by Idris Elba and Kwame Kwei-Armah - blending live music, dance and film to explore the past, present and future of a contemporary South Africa. The 2019 festival will be the last before it takes up permanent residence in brand new venue The Factory (see entry below).
Netball World Cup, Liverpool
12 – 21 July 2019
England Netball and the City of Liverpool will host 16 teams for the 2019 Netball World Cup. The tournament will be held at ACC Liverpool, which has already successfully staged international netball on several occasions. Host nation England are second seeds, following their Commonwealth Games gold medal in April 2018.
Fantasy Forest festival, Cotswolds
20 – 21 July 2019
The UK’s first Fantasy Forest will be held in Sudeley Castle’s grounds. Participants can dress up in their favourite costume from Socplay, Steampunk, Fantasy, Sci-fi, Medieval, Gothic, Pirates – whoever they want to be – and immerse themselves in another (highly Instagrammable) world, with fantasy-related shows, entertainment, stages, competitions, lectures, workshops, traders and more. Limited camping spots are available; the festival is the first time it will be possible for visitors to spend the night on Sudeley Castle grounds.
UCI Road World Championships, Yorkshire
22 – 29 September 2019
Yet another major sporting event will arrive in Yorkshire in 2019. One of the world’s most prestigious professional cycling events, the UCI Road World Championships will see 1,000 riders from 75 different countries compete in 12 races over eight days. The routes will take in Yorkshire’s spectacular countryside and no doubt be packed by crowds waving on the athletes. Provisional race start venues include Beverley, Bradford, Doncaster, Leeds, Northallerton, Ripon and York. All races will finish in Harrogate, the event’s focal point.
The Discover England Fund_________________________________________________________________
The Discover England Fund is a three-year, £40 million programme that reaches maturity in March 2019. The Fund is now in the third year of delivery and has funded 52 projects to date.
The Great West Way, led by VisitWiltshire – November 2018
The ‘Great West Way’ project, led by destination management organisation VisitWiltshire, transforms tourism along a 125-mile (201-km) route between London and Bristol. The major investment developing a new touring route and link a package of tailored visitor experiences, including destinations, accommodation, attractions and transport options. The ‘Great West Way’ makes it easier for international visitors to book personalised trips that take in more of the region, boosting tourism along the way.
The National Park Experience Collection, led by Peak District National Park Authority
This two-year collaboration of the National Parks in England is creating a joined up, branded collection of experiences. It is also providing business support and a trade marketing strategy to create bookable tourism product across the English National Parks. Initially, the project will work with the travel trade to target the Australian and German markets. It has recently developed a suite of excusive ‘Ranger Experiences’ to experience the parks in a way not available before.
Growing Manchester as an International Gateway to the North, led by Marketing Manchester
This project is increasing the volume of visitors coming through Manchester Airport by creating itineraries that showcase the city, and excursions that open up the North of England. Working with destinations, travel trade and the tourism industry and targeting the US market, Marketing Manchester is leading a partnership to maximise the potential of the North of England as an international destination and gateway to the North.
Uncover the Cotswolds led by Cotswold Tourism – set to launch Spring 2019 This project aims to to show that the Cotswolds is far more than a glorious, extended photo opportunity: a wide range of new experiences will give visitors in-depth access to the wider Cotswolds, its history, culture, village life, local food and countryside. A new website will provide itineraries with full information on bookable products, alongside extra information to enrich visits: everything from ideas for where to eat & drink to special touches like vintage car hire.
England's Coast, led by the National Coastal Tourism Academy
Led by the National Coastal Tourism Academy, the 'England's Coast' project promotes the coastline using interactive video technology which allows holidaymakers to create their own coastal itineraries. ‘England’s Coast’ targets German, Dutch and French visitors coming to Britain, and enable them to build personalised itineraries along the North East, South, South West and East coast. It will inspire visitors with a selection of each region's finest coastal locations and activities, allowing them to see destinations and retailers along each route, while also booking accommodation, activities and attractions.
England’s Waterways led by the West Midlands Growth Company
This project inspires international visitors to explore the waterways of England and discover ‘England’s heartland’ – focusing on the areas in and around Birmingham and the wider Midlands. The project will undertake a programme of product development and awareness-raising among the travel trade to incorporate more of the country's waterways and the wider cultural offer into a portfolio of canal and river-centred holidays.
Experience England, led by London & Partners in partnership with Marketing Manchester and the West Midlands Growth Company
This project makes it easier for first time visitors from China and the GCC to visit London and discover other parts of England as part of the same holiday. Experience England offers a variety of iconic, immersive itineraries spanning cities and countryside and enabling visitors to discover real icons of England and the real English way of life. The project removes barriers to multi-destination travel and will include open jaw-ticketing, travel between destinations and seamless baggage transfer. Visitors will depart from a different English city to the one they entered ensuring minimal travel and maximum holiday time.
Horseracing – Sport of Kings, led by Marketing Cheshire
Cheshire West and Chester Council are creating experience-led itineraries for visitors from China and the Middle East, incorporating world-famous race-courses (Ascot, Newmarket, York and Chester) with luxury accommodation offers, in heritage locations
The Outdoor City Adventure Breaks led by Marketing Sheffield – bookable from 2019
Tapping into the emerging market for adrenaline breaks, this project uses the ease of access to Sheffield from Northern Europe (by air, car, ferry or train) to target young active explorers from Germany, the Netherlands, and the Nordics. ‘Adrenaline fuelled city breaks’ will allow visitors to book accommodation, food and drink options, night-life choices and adventure sports activities based on their personal preferences for breaks of up to three nights.
Buzzing for the weekend, led by Warrington Council – bookable from 2019
‘Buzzing for the Weekend’ focuses on 18-25 year olds from Spain and Portugal. This project will get tourists flying into Liverpool’s John Lennon Airport and exploring the Liverpool City Region as well as Cheshire and Lancashire with fun, short-break packages revolving around dance, exploration, food and drink.
2016 – 2020: Brontë200, various locations
Brontë200 is a five-year programme of events, workshops and activities celebrating the bicentenaries of the births of four of the Brontës: Charlotte (2016); Emily, the third of the four surviving Brontë children and the author of Wuthering Heights (2018); Anne (2020); and in 2019, it’s the turn of the father of the celebrated writers, Rev Patrick Brontë. 2019 marks 200 years since he was invited to take up the role of parson in Haworth. The programme is run by The Brontë Society, with events put on by Brontë enthusiasts, museums, festivals, literary societies and art organisations all over the world.
www.bronte.org.uk/bronte-200 ; #Bronte200
New helicopter service to St Mary’s and Tresco, Isles of Scilly
Penzance Heliport and Sloane Helicopters are partnering to provide regular helicopter flights from Penzance to both St Mary’s and Tresco – it will be the only Isles of Scilly helicopter service to fly to both islands. There will be up to 17 return flights per day and a limited Sunday schedule.
2020: Bodmin Jail to become a hotel, Cornwall
Two wings of the Grade II-listed Bodmin Jail are set to be transformed into a 63-bedroom hotel. The hotel will be housed in the derelict cell blocks wings, with each bedroom made of three cells. Glazed roof lights the length of both wings will create a centralised atrium, and décor will be inspired by the aged, weathered stone of the original building. The jail already operates as an attraction and venue, and a new building will house the ‘Dark Walk’ attraction, a sequence of themed rooms that will showcase the stories of Bodmin Jail’s past inmates and immerse visitors in life in Bodmin Jail in the 18th and 19th centuries.
2020: Redevelopment of Colston Hall, Bristol
One of Bristol’s major concert halls, Colston Hall, turned 150 years old in 2017. To celebrate, it is undergoing Bristol’s biggest ever redevelopment programme in the arts sector. Phase 1 was completed in 2009. Phase 2 kicked off in 2018. Planned improvements include remodelling the existing main auditorium and equipping it with international standards of acoustics, comfort and flexibility; restoring the historic core of the building and the Colston Street frontage to its Victorian magnificence; redeveloping the second hall, known as The Lantern, into an elegant and versatile performance venue; and creating a third venue in the Victorian cellars. It’s due for completion in 2020, when it will reopen with a brand new name.
2020: Spectacular new Eden Project hotel, Cornwall
There will be a new £8.5 million addition to the Eden Project in 2020: a 109-bedroom hotel. The unconventional structure will blend into the countryside and offer high levels of accessibility, energy efficiency and sustainability. Designed by Tate Harmer, one of the UK's leading architects for sustainability and natural environments, the new hotel will incorporate existing features such as old trees and stone walls. A meadow and an orchard will be planted around the hotel.
2020: RHS Garden Bridgewater
Phased opening from spring 2020
A fifth garden is set to join the RHS’s portfolio when the new 156-acre RHS Garden Bridgewater resurrects the historic gardens of Worsley New Hall, Salford. Bridgewater will be the RHS’s first new garden in 17 years, and the largest gardening project in Europe. Top landscape architect Tom Stuart-Smith has designed a magnificent 11-acre walled garden, whose first phase includes a magnificent 11-acre walled garden (one of the largest in the UK), a new Welcome Building by architects Hodder+Partners, a therapeutic garden and community allotments. The Society hopes to welcome 1 million people a year within a decade to this new destination garden, and preview tours can be booked from early 2019 via https://www.rhs.org.uk/gardens/bridgewater/tours.
2020: The Geffrye reopens after £18m development project
The Geffrye will reopen following a major two-year-long transformation, named Unlocking the Geffrye. The scheme will open up the museum and greatly improve the visitor experience, create new spaces for its collections and learning activities, and develop the museum for generations to come.
The Auckland Project opens two new attractions, County Durham
Building on the re-opening of 900-year-old Auckland Castle in 2019, arts, faith and heritage destination The Auckland Project will complete the first phase of its development in 2020 with the opening of two further major attractions. The Castle’s original 17th century Walled Garden will be reimagined and opened to the public for the very first time, housing a striking contemporary restaurant designed by Japanese architects SANAA. An extension to Auckland Castle’s Scotland Wing will also be completed, which will house the Faith Museum – the first museum in England to explore the history of faith in Britain and Ireland from pre-history to the present day.
2020: Replica of a Shakespearean theatre, Liverpool
Shakespeare North plans to celebrate the Elizabethan heritage of Merseyside by building a replica Shakespearean theatre in the area. They will build the playhouse in Prescot, which, over 400 years ago, was home to the only purpose-built Elizabethan playhouse outside of London. The 350-seat Shakespeare North Playhouse will be a faithful candlelit replica, built inside a modern shell; it will also include classrooms and an exhibition area.
2020: Mayflower 400
November 2019 – November 2020
On 16 September 1620, the Mayflower ship set off from Plymouth, transporting 102 English pilgrims across the Atlantic to New England. The voyage became one of the most famous in early American colonial history. 400 years later, the UK, USA and Holland will commemorate the perilous journey with major international events, cultural works, new tourism itineraries and products, education programmes, community participation and volunteering schemes, and joint scientific and business projects. Eleven locations in England will take part in the Mayflower 400 programme: Austerfield, Doncaster; Boston, Lincolnshire; Dartmouth, Devon; Gainsborough, Lincolnshire; Harwich, Essex; Immingham, Lincolnshire; Worcestershire; Scrooby & Babworth, Nottinghamshire; Southwark, London; Southampton, Hampshire; and Plymouth, who will lead the plans. Plymouth has already unveiled projects including renovations to historic city buildings, a world-class Mayflower monument, a history trail, and a new history centre. Other ideas include major music events on the Hoe, a ‘Mayflower Muster’ display involving the UK, US and Dutch Navy forces, major theatrical events and public art commissions. Celebrations will kick off around the annual Thanksgiving and Illuminate events in Plymouth’s historic Barbican in November 2019, when lights, parades, music and entertainment will commemorate links with the USA. A new Mayflower trails app with walking and driving trails of all 11 Mayflower destinations in England https://www.mayflower400uk.org/app
2020: Archway Project at the Roman Baths, Bath
The Archway Project, a major new development at the Roman Baths, is slated to open in 2020. The project will convert former Victorian spa buildings near to the Roman Baths into new spaces – including a new learning centre for schools and groups and a World Heritage Centre exploring why Bath is designated a World Heritage Site – and open up other areas of the Roman Baths to the public, such as a Roman exercise yard and laconicum (sauna).
2020: The Factory, Manchester
When it opens, this large-scale, game-changing venue on the old Granada site will be the North’s flagship cultural centre, capturing the depth and creativity of Manchester’s cultural life. The £110 million venue, designed by Rem Koolhaas’ Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA), will host everything from concerts, theatre, music and opera to major exhibitions; it will also become the permanent home of Manchester International Festival (see entry above). Upon completion, it is expected to attract 850,000 people from across Manchester, the UK and the world annually, boosting the region’s economy by £1.1 billion over a decade
2020: 150th anniversary of Charles Dickens’s death
After his death on 9 June 1870 in Kent (where he spent much of his life), Charles Dickens was laid to rest in Poet’s Corner, Westminster Abbey. Born in Portsmouth in 1812, Dickens spent much of his working life in London, writing novels such as Great Expectations and Oliver Twist. He also has links to Manchester and Yorkshire. The Victoria and Albert Museum is already planning co-curated programmes and displays in the run-up to the anniversary, as part of its two-year-long ‘Deciphering Dickens’ project. More events will be announced in due course.
Salisbury Cathedral’s 800th anniversary, Wiltshire
2020 marks 800 years since the Salisbury Cathedral site was consecrated at New Sarum in 1220. January 2020 will see the re-installation of the cathedral’s Father Willis organ, following an extensive year-long programme of restoration, in time for the anniversary. As well as its remarkable age, the cathedral has Britain’s tallest spire, the world’s oldest working mechanical clock, and the largest cathedral close in Britain.
2021: England Coast Path
The England Coast Path will be a new National Trail all around England's coast. It is opening in sections and will be complete in 2021. The first 66-mile (106-km) stretch in Kent and East Sussex opened in July 2016. At 2,700 miles (4,498km) long, it will be the longest coastal walking route in the world.
2020: Coast-to-coast canoe trail, Leeds & Liverpool Canal
The first-ever coast-to-coast canoe trail is set for completion by 2020. The 162-mile (261-km) Desmond Family Canoe Trail will link Mersey and Humberside via towns and cities including Liverpool, Wigan, Blackburn, Burnley, Leeds, Skipton, Bradford and Goole. The new trail will follow the Leeds & Liverpool Canal and the Aire & Calder Navigation and will take kayakers five to seven days to complete. A timed system to allow kayakers to pass through the mile-long Foulridge Tunnel opened in 2017. A network of accommodation and eateries will be on hand for kayakers too.
2020: The Journey, Dorset
The planned £80 million Jurassica attraction celebrating the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site’s heritage will no longer go ahead. Instead, it has joined forces with the Memo, a biodiversity project on the Isle of Portland. The new £20 million scheme, which will tell the story of evolution, extinction and biodiversity, will be based in the underground tunnels of Albion Stone’s mines. Plans due to be submitted at the end of 2018 are supported by Cornwall’s Eden Project.
2020: 300th anniversary of Gilbert White’s birth
Most famous as the author of The Natural History and Antiquities of Selborne, Gilbert White is considered ‘the first ecologist’. A dedicated visitor centre in Hampshire celebrates his life and achievements; the centre is replete with a café that (where possible) serves produce from Gilbert’s garden. White was born 18 July 1720, and it’s expected that anniversary events will happen on and around that date.
2020: Refurbishment of Mercury Theatre, Essex
Mercury Rising is an ambitious project to extend and refurbish Colchester’s Mercury Theatre. The much-improved building will open in 2020 with a bigger, brighter foyer, more seats in the main auditorium, greatly improved access, a new café and rehearsal and community spaces, and revamped backstage facilities.
2020: Nottingham Castle reopens following transformation
Work began in 2017 to transform Nottingham Castle into a world-class destination. Approximately £24 million is being invested in what is being called the most significant current heritage project in the UK. The grounds will be remodelled to reveal more of the medieval site and views across the city, and to enable them to host a new visitor centre and year-round outdoor events programme. An interactive Robin Hood Gallery will be added to the Ducal Palace, which will be returned to its 19th century layout. There will be animated tours of the caves, which will be given improved access, including to some parts never before seen by the public. The ground-floor displays in the 17th-century Brewhouse Yard cottages will also be improved, and the cottages will be the welcome point for visitors arriving at the foot of Castle Rock. Work is expected to be completed in 2020; the castle is closed until then.
2020: Una St Ives Resort, Carbis Bay, Cornwall
Plans to build a new aparthotel, leisure facilities and 96 holiday villas at Una Resort in Carbis Bay (near St Ives) were approved in 2018. The site already has 29 contemporary self-catering eco-houses, extensive spa and leisure facilities and Una Kitchen, well known for its Mediterranean and wood-fired cooking. Phase one of Una’s expansion, which commences in early 2019, will deliver a 42-roomed aparthotel, additional self-catering apartments, and expanded leisure, spa, restaurant and event space. The £25m programme to develop Una into one of Cornwall’s leading resorts is now a reality.
2020: Hyde Park Picture House to re-open following refurbishment, Leeds
Hyde Park Picture House, the world’s only surviving gas-lit cinema, is to undergo a £3.6 million renovation. Planning permission has been granted for works including a new three-storey extension, a new basement with a second screen, and an enlarged foyer. The historic community cinema in a Grade II-listed building was built in 1914 and has several remarkable surviving elements, including a hexagonal ticket office. Works begins June 2019, and the cinema plans to re-open a year later.
2020: New five-star hotel The Londoner, Leicester Square, London
Edwardian Hotels London will open its first purpose-built hotel in style in 2020, with £300m development The Londoner. The landmark building will embrace the drama and heritage of its West End setting while offering superb-quality accommodation and facilities, including 315 bedrooms, 35 luxury suites, concept restaurants and a roof-top bar with unrivalled views of central London. The hotel’s 15 levels will also incorporate one of the deepest commercial basements in Europe, encompassing leisure facilities, spa, and state-of-the-art conference facilities – as well as two Odeon Luxe cinemas that reflect its Leicester Square setting.
NEW £7M* development at Ribby Hall Village
Ribby Hall Village has won planning approval for an ambitious NEW project which will make it one of the most sought-after holiday destinations in the north of England. The exciting, 22-acre Reeds Bay development will include twenty prestigious NEW holiday homes for purchase, two luxury holiday apartments and a water sports centre, set alongside a huge lake. This announcement comes as the award-winning Holiday Village celebrates its 25th birthday, underlining the on-going success of the business and the confidence its owners have, to continue investing and improving the already five-star facilities.
2021: The Canterbury Journey, Canterbury Cathedral
Until autumn 2021
In May 2014, the Heritage Lottery Fund awarded an in-principle grant of nearly £12m to Canterbury Cathedral. The Canterbury Journey will radically transform the accessibility and sustainability of the cathedral, while safeguarding the building, increasing the number of visitors and enriching their experience. The planned proposal includes: a new welcome centre and community space both expected to open winter 2018; new exhibition and interpretation spaces by summer 2019; new trails to guide visitors through both the cathedral and its newly landscaped precincts, and an outreach programme to schools and communities. The fabric of the cathedral’s western end, which is currently endangered, will be restored and enhanced. The project is being delivered between 2016 and 2021, completing autumn/winter 2021.
2021: 900 years of Tewkesbury Abbey
23 October 2021
The build-up has begun for one of the largest celebrations of its kind, marking 900 years of the consecration of Tewkesbury Abbey in 1121. A massive fund-raising project kicked off in 2017. The project aims to make the Abbey fit for purpose for future generations, and includes cleaning and restoring the much-loved Milton Organ. There’s another reason why 2021 will be momentous for the market town of Tewkesbury; the year also marks 550 years since the Battle of Tewkesbury in 1471.
2021: New permanent Smithsonian/V&A collaboration, London
Two of the world’s most respected museums will work together on a permanent gallery space at V&A East, the V&A’s venue at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. The Smithsonian and the V&A will work together on joint exhibitions, drawing on both museums' collections, as well as their expertise in science and the arts and humanities – “and where they intersect". The facility is expected to open in 2021.
2021: Remaking Beamish, County Durham
The Remaking Beamish project has been granted £10.9 million from the Heritage Lottery Fund. The funding will be used to create a range of new ways for people to experience the heritage of the north east, with a reconstruction of a 1950s town as its centerpiece – meaning the museum will recreate a period within living memory. Visitors will also be able to spend the night in a reconstructed Great North Road coaching inn. By 2021, Beamish plans to attract 100,000 more visitors to the region annually, and create 95 permanent jobs and 50 apprenticeships.
2021:New flagship YHA London Stratford
The YHA’s flagship 850-room super-hostel will be the first on this scale in London and three times larger than any other existing property in the YHA’s network across England and Wales. It will be next to Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, Stratford Underground station and Westfield Shopping Centre, and a short walk from east London’s Stratford International mainline station. The super-hostel will be ideal for group accommodation, with bars, restaurants, conference and meeting facilities, en-suite bedrooms, a self-catering kitchen and communal spaces.
2021: New high-rise Hilton hotel to open in Woking, Surrey
Hilton is to open a new high-rise hotel in Woking as part of a £500 million regeneration of the town. The 189-bedroom property will be in the upcoming Victoria Square retail and residential development. The site will include a Sky Bar, all-day restaurant, on-site coffee shop and 65 square metres (700 square ft) of meeting space, including a ballroom for up to 500 guests.
2021: The Peninsula hotel to open, London
The luxury global chain has announced plans to open its first ever UK property in London. Located in Belgravia, steps away from Hyde Park and Buckingham Palace, the new 189-bedroom Peninsula hotel will be in a prime location to explore the capital’s cultural highlights. In-house academy programmes, designed to offer destination insight, will add to the hotel’s ‘cultural learning experience’. The five-star hotel is slated to open in 2021, following a £650 million development project.
2021: Cleveland Pools, Bath
Funds are being raised to restore the Cleveland Pools, the UK’s oldest and only surviving open-air Georgian lido. The plans include a 25-metre (82ft) swimming pool of naturally treated water, and the refurbishment of the original Georgian changing cubicles and cottage. The unusual open-air lido was built in 1815 on the banks of the River Avon, and in use until 1984. Pending funding from the Heritage Lottery Fun, the restoration of these Grade II-listed baths should be complete in time for summer 2021.
2021: Coventry UK City of Culture 2021
Ongoing until winter 2021
Coventry will be UK City of Culture 2021. Highlights of Coventry’s winning bid include: a Streets of Culture programme co-producing work in local communities; major productions by the RSC and the screening of the entire works of Shakespeare in iconic locations; ‘Moments of Silence’, an artist-led festival that will create moments of silence and beauty, reflect on the city’s 700-year-old Carthusian monastery Charterhouse, and play on the myth of being ‘Sent to Coventry’; and Tale of Two Streets, a project that looks at two of the most diverse streets in Britain through the eyes of photographers. A 2.2-mile (3.5-km) Ring Road poem is set to be one of the digital centrepieces. The build-up started in 2018, with the UK’s first Shop Front Theatre Festival (March), and the celebration of the 100th anniversary of Coventry Cathedral with a major new lighting commission. Coventry will also have the opportunity to host a number of core events, including ones run by Arts Council England, the UK Film Council and the BBC.
2022: Inspiring People: Transforming our National Portrait Gallery
The National Portrait Gallery has been awarded funding of £9.4 million from The National Lottery towards a £35.5 million transformation programme. For the first time in the Gallery’s history there will be a comprehensive re-display of the Collection across all the galleries combined with a significant refurbishment, creating twenty per cent more public and gallery spaces. The transformation will also see the Gallery’s most extensive programme of activities nationwide with plans to engage audiences onsite, locally, regionally and online. As well as extending activities for schools, families, young people and students, a volunteering programme will be introduced. It will also improve its main entrance and create a new state-of-the-art Learning Centre with several studio spaces; building works are scheduled to start in 2020.
2022: Admiralty Arch to become London’s first Waldorf Astoria
The iconic Admiralty Arch is being transformed into a five-star-plus luxury hotel, private members’ club and serviced residences. The Edwardian building marks the boundary between Trafalgar Square and The Mall – two of the capital’s most-loved landmarks – and the views from the 100 rooms and suites are guaranteed to be some of the city’s best. There will also be a state-of-the-art spa and several bars, while a restaurant spanning the first bridging floor will open the building to the public for the first time. A stay here promises to be a brush with some fascinating political and royal heritage: Winston Churchill was based here as First Lord of the Admiralty; First World War code-breaking operations were run from here; Ian Fleming worked here during the Second World War; and some royal processions still pass under the main arch, as they have done for over a century. Restoration and building works are underway, and when the hotel opens in 2022, it will be first Waldorf Astoria in London.
2022: Museum of London moves to new site
The Museum of London has reached capacity at its current London Wall site and announced plans to move from Barbican to a new site in West Smithfield. The new site is particularly resonant: an abandoned general market with Victorian buildings, a giant Edwardian gas burner, a working train line and a whole street. Through the move, the museum hopes to contribute to the rejuvenation of the Smithfield area, take advantage of the outstanding transport links, and use the increased exhibition space to showcase never-seen-before artefacts. The museum has a clear programme in mind, hoping to open in 2022. The move will also form an important part of ‘Culture Mile’, a major new cultural and creative destination in the Square Mile.
2022: New entertainment resort, Kent
The original plans to create a British Disneyland in Kent have been scrapped after London Resort Company Holdings Limited (LRCH) and Paramount Licensing failed to come to an agreement on which films would be licensed to the resort. However, LRCH is looking for other names to work with, and the entertainment resort is the first ‘business or commercial project’ to be accepted as a Nationally Significant Infrastructure Project. Chris Townsend, the commercial director at London 2012 organiser LOCOG, has been appointed to create the new theme park, which will feature water parks, cinemas and live music venues. IHG will operate a series of managed hotels there.
2022: Birmingham to host 2022 Commonwealth Games
27 July – 7 August 2022
Birmingham has officially been named the host city for the 2022 Commonwealth Games. The city’s strong existing venue infrastructure, risk management and long-term sporting legacy plans featured heavily in Birmingham’s winning proposal, which also includes plans to build the UK’s largest permanent athletics stadium, and to host some events in nearby places such as Walsall and Cannock Chase. The baton was passed to Birmingham at the closing ceremony of the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games on 15 April 2018.
2022: Art’otel® at Battersea Power Station, London
Located in one of the new Foster + Partners-designed buildings around historic Battersea Power Station, this 160-bedroom luxury lifestyle hotel will have curated gardens, a signature restaurant, double height bar, a roof garden, an outdoor rooftop pool and a bar overlooking the iconic chimneys. Guests will be welcomed by a public gallery creative space with a rotating calendar of exhibitions, as well as cultural and artistic events that support both established and up-and-coming artists.
2023: Eden Project of the North
The Eden Project has unveiled its vision for Eden Project North, a major new attraction in Morecambe, Lancashire. The plan is for a destination that combines indoor and outdoor experiences, connecting people with the internationally-significant natural environment of Morecambe Bay while also enhancing well-being. Its vision includes reimagined lidos, gardens, performance spaces, immersive experiences and observatories. Central to the desing is a series of pavilllions inspired by mussels. The Eden Project North would open in autumn 2022 at a cost of £80m and attract up to 8000 people a day to Morecambe. Eden is working with Grimshaw, the architecture firm who designed its world-famous Rainforest and Mediterranean Biomes, to create this unique structure for Morecambe with a focus on the marine environment..
2027: 10-year plan for Blenheim Palace, Oxfordshire
Blenheim Palace has launched an ambitious 10-year plan to take the historic attraction to a whole new level, revolutionising virtually every aspect of the World Heritage Site. They plan to complete their £40 million restoration programme by becoming a net generator of green energy, tripling the estate’s contribution to the local economy and housing 300 families in high quality affordable housing. They also plan to grow annual paying visitor numbers to more than 750,000.
2050: Thames Estuary Arts Hub
Ambitious plans to transform the Thames Estuary into a hub for artists and creatives have been announced. The proposals, submitted to the Thames Estuary 2050 Growth Commission, include theatre-making studios in Bexley, a foundry for large sculptures and artworks in Silvertown (including the UK’s biggest 3D printing centre), a gaming hub at the University of Essex, an arts centre in Woolwich and industrial research laboratories in Kent.
Ongoing: ‘Culture Mile’, City of London
‘Culture Mile’ is to be a major new cultural and creative destination in the Square Mile – the beating heart of London, where creativity is the most valued currency. Working with the Barbican, Guildhall School of Music & Drama, London Symphony Orchestra and Museum of London, the City of London Corporation plans to transform the north-west corner of the City – an area stretching just under a mile from Farringdon to Moorgate – over 10-15 years. The area will be enlivened by imaginative collaborations, outdoor programming and events seven days a week, as well as vastly improved transport links and environmental standards. Three major building projects are included as part of the project: the new Museum of London at West Smithfield; a new Centre for Music on the current site of the Museum of London; and the transformation of Beech Street into a cultural hub for the area.
Ongoing: New St John’s neighbourhood, Manchester
St John’s is an enormous masterplan to create a new neighbourhood for enterprise, culture and living, which will sit on the former site of Granada Studios. Incorporating 2,400 residential homes, world-class hotels, work space, intimate streets and lively courtyards, the St John’s neighbourhood will retain many original buildings such as the iconic Bonded Warehouse as well as new-builds such as The Factory. Dates are slippery, but The Factory – billed as the North of England’s new flagship cultural venue – is scheduled to open in 2020 and will be the home of Manchester International Festival from 2021 (see entry above).
The Libertines to open The Albion Rooms hotel and studio, Margate, Kent
Phased opening, dates not yet known
Owned and developed by rock band The Libertines, The Albion Rooms is located on the seafront in the Cliftonville area of Margate, a classic British seaside town with a strong artistic heritage. The development sits within a five-storey Victorian building overlooking the town bandstand and the sea, and will comprise a recording studio - to be used by the band and a range of other artists - and a bar/community space, in addition to guest bedrooms bearing the band’s individual design style.
Brewdog Hotel in London
BrewDog, announced that they will be opening London’s first ever Craft Beer Hotel – The DogHouse. Like its recently opened Columbus counterpart, Brewdog will ensure that all rooms in the DogHouse London will have fresh craft beer you can pour for yourself in each room – and their now iconic shower-beer fridges will also feature. A Punk IPA Jacuzzi has been mooted and the hotel will have its own craft beer museum. BrewDog are currently scouting out a site for the hotel.
Geothermal heating at Jubilee Pool, Cornwall
Part of Jubilee Pool in Penzance will be heating using geothermal energy, once a geothermal well has been dug on-site. The European Regional Development Fund has invested £1.4 million in the project, which will be the first deep geothermal heat project in the UK for over 25 years. The rest of the pool will remain at its usual bracing temperature.
Camel Creek to become Britain’s ﬁrst six-star resort, Cornwall
Britain’s ﬁrst six-star resort has gained approval from Cornwall Council. Camel Creek will have 236 holiday lodges, a leisure park, convention centre, exhibition space as well as shops, restaurants and a pub. Guests will be able to stay in one of 106 villas, 46 treehouses or 84 courtyard homes set around picturesque lakes. The land for the resort sits next to Camel Creek Adventure Park (formally Crealy Cornwall adventure park), which has ambitious plans to become the UK’s leading family attraction following a £20 million investment. John Broome, former owner of Alton Towers theme park, is behind the developments. Early plans suggest an opening date in 2021.
www.camelcreekresort.com ; www.camelcreek.co.uk
TBC: Royal Pier, Southampton
It’s still in very early planning stages, but a £400 million development promises to transform the landscape of Southampton’s waterfront, showcasing the international face of the city as a great place to live, work and enjoy. Mayflower Park will be recreated and extended, while speciality shops, offices, leisure venues, apartments and waterside attractions will be scattered along the shoreline. The park will become a high-quality public space offering spectacular views. There will also be a four/five-star hotel.
TBC: New hotel and waterpark at Longleat, Wiltshire
Longleat’s plans to build a new 240-bedroom hotel, with waterpark and business conference facilities on the edge of its estate near Warminster have been approved by Wiltshire Council.
Seel Street Hotel by EPIC, Liverpool
The new seven-storey aparthotel will open on land currently used as a surface car park, within the Ropewalks area of Liverpool’s city centre. The aparthotel will provide 42 high-quality apartments including 116 rooms (with the flexibility to offer single rooms and serviced suites), and a rooftop pool and spa. The design makes extensive use of brick and copper cladding to complement the neighbouring Georgian buildings, while nurturing modern architectural appeal.
TBC: Plans to build Europe’s tallest observation wheel, NewcastleGateshead
Developers have announced plans to build Europe’s tallest observation wheel, on Newcastle Quayside. At 140 metres (459ft), the ‘Whey Aye’ would be almost 5 metres (16ft) taller than the London Eye. The World Wheel Company says the wheel will also have a world record breaking 10,000-square-metre (107,340-square-ft) LED digital screen as its centre piece, and be surrounded by a pedestrianised area with premium bars and restaurants. The World Wheel Company will submit a detailed planning application to Newcastle City Council in late 2018.
TBC: Huge new Sphere concert venue for London
Madison Square Garden Company has confirmed plans to build the Sphere, a giant orb-shaped music venue near East London’s Olympic Park. Early designs by Populous architects suggest the venue will be able to host 20,000 concertgoers beneath an enormous vaulted roof that can be used as a domed, 360-degree screen for projections. True to London fashion, the glass structure has already been dubbed the Golf Ball.