Tied up in Notts, with Byron and Robin Hood
British Breaks: Nottinghamshire
Sunday 14 June 2009
Get creative at Nottingham's Broadway Cinema (broadway .org.uk), which launches the ScreenLit, Film, TV and Writing Festival from 29 June to 5 July. This new event aims to celebrate the area's contribution to writing and how it contributes to 21st-century culture through film, TV, books and new media.
A workshop with Paul Schrader – author, screenwriter and director of the Taxi Driver novel and film – is one highlight in the week-long programme. The premiere of Coco Before Chanel, with Audrey Tatou, is among scheduled the screenings.
From 10-19 July, Hucknall hosts the 10th International Byron Festival (ashfield-dc.gov.uk/cfusion/events), an annual celebration of the poet's life and work. Events range from exhibitions and heritage tours that focus on Byron's travels in Europe, to garden parties and competitions. Discover more about the man at Newstead Abbey (newsteadabbey.org.uk), the Byrons' ancestral home, which opens Friday to Monday, until September. The gardens, which open daily, will stage an Open Air Theatre season, including A Midsummer Night's Dream (10 July), Twelfth Night (26 July), and The Three Musketeers (22 August).
Nottinghamshire's most famous character, Robin Hood, is celebrated in the the annual festival (nottinghamshire.gov. uk/robinhood festival) between 3 and 9 August at the Sherwood Forest Country Park and Visitor Centre near Edwinstowe. With jousting, strolling players, storytelling and more.
See the sights
Get on your bike in the Sherwood Forest National Nature Reserve (nottinghamshire.gov. uk). Two new cycle trails – available from the tourist centre or to download at robinhoodbreaks.com – include the Ancient Sherwood route, which takes in the Clumber Park estate (national trust.org.uk), and the Adventure Pine route, which is based in and around Sherwood Pines Forest Park (forestry.gov.uk). It's a National Centre of Excellence for off-road cycling, with some of the best mountain biking terrain in the UK and a network of trails designed to suit all abilities. Stop off at the sites that form part of the Robin Hood trail along the way to hear tales of the legendary hero on a free audio trail also available on the above website.
A new heritage walk in the market town of Southwell (southwellevents .com) tells the story of the Bramley apple, which this year celebrates its bicentenary. The self-guided two-mile trail, which is wheelchair and pushchair friendly, visits the tree where Bramleys were first grown as well as other significant sites. While you're there, see the new stained-glass window in Southwell Minster.
For more suggestions and accommodation ideas, go to visitnotts.com.
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