Shake off winter blues with the National Trust in North Devon

SPRING is waiting to be sprung at some of North Devon s much loved National Trust attractions, with Arlington Court, Watersmeet Tea Garden and Heddon Valley shop opening early this year for February half term. The early spring fun includes an opportunity

SPRING is waiting to be sprung at some of North Devon's much loved National Trust attractions, with Arlington Court, Watersmeet Tea Garden and Heddon Valley shop opening early this year for February half term.

The early spring fun includes an opportunity to see Arlington house and carriage museum from another perspective, as from Saturday 13 to Sunday, February 21 and again on the 27 and Sunday 28, there will access to more areas, with all the doors open and guided tours of the house.

It runs from 11am-3pm and children can also enjoy a scavenger hunt for hidden objects in the museum and garden.

For those still feeling the winter chill there is also a Winter Woolly exhibition, by the North Devon Spinners in the Carriage Museum gallery, also from February 13-21, on February 27 and 28 and on March 6 and 7. This display includes spinning, weaving, knitting, lace-making and hand made fibre crafts. It is free with normal admission, the last tour starts at 2.15pm.


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In the beautiful woodland setting of Watersmeet near Lynmouth, the Tea Room is taking a tip from the Nordic counties during half term, with al fresco dining made easy as blankets are provided for visitors to enjoy their hot drink or snack in warmth and comfort whilst enjoying the stunning scenery as well.

After a walk along Heddon Valley and the stunning West Exmoor coast the National Trust shop at Hunters Inn will also be open for a browse.

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Both are open from February 13-21 from 11am-3pm.

"Watersmeet Wednesdays" are also running every Wednesday during school holidays in 2010, with free drop in activities for families to enjoy in and around Watersmeet. The first one will be held on the Wednesday, February 17 with some feathered fun and games and lots of bird themed activities for families to enjoy.

To completely banish any remaining frosty chills, on February 19 there is an invitation to set fire to the moor - in a controlled fashion - and take part in a traditional swaling event.

It will give a good insight into the custom of controlled burning of gorse and scrub on the moor, and includes a talk through some of the modern techniques and machinery used. If weather participants will get a chance to put their new knowledge into practice with a controlled burn on Exmoor.

The day costs �15 and booking is essential. For more information and to book call (01598) 763306.

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