UK

UK, Where to stay

Homes from home

Introducing our current hot list of self-catering ‘cottages’ – including shepherds huts in deepest Devon, vintage railway carriages in Cornwall, a Scottish island eyrie, a dinky cottage overlooking Polperro’s fishing harbour and a time-warped tin hut in rural Somerset. They are booking up fast for 2023, but there’s always next year…

Cornwall, Travel, UK

Cornwall: in the know

Cornwall is so rammed with visitors these days they are squeezing into every nook and cranny. But there are still relatively undiscovered places that don’t draw the crowds. My round-up of ‘secrets’ is quite heavy on tin mining, Cornish moorland, scenic railways and social distancing. The only beaches on the list require walking boots and stamina. And I’ve chucked in three random food options.

Hotels, UK, Where to stay

New hotels 2021: updated

This year’s batch of new hotels include Mollie’s Motel and Diner, (pictured), the Eden Project’s first venture into accommodation, two fresh-faced Graduates (Oxford and Cambridge get one each), a converted Georgian prison and a Safari-tent campsite on an inland surfing lake. Hotels begin to open from 17 May and business is brisk with some booked up already until at least September.

Architecture, UK

Coventry: the architecture tour

The UK’s City of Culture 2021 is generally associated with new-town concrete, but this model of post-war renewal, claims numerous medieval survivors – the city is perhaps defined by its glorious Cathedral (a conciliation of ancient and modern). And the devil is in the detail. Our highlights feature medieval gatehouses, abstract tiles, Aztec friezes and an animated Lady Godiva.

News, UK

Chester: open-air city

Chester has been declared ‘an open-air city’ – a place to wander safely in the great outdoors while admiring its many assets: Britain’s most complete Roman and medieval walls, for example, Chester Cathedral’s gardens, or – in the half-timbered streets of the old shopping centre – the remarkable Tudor galleries they […]

Architecture, UK

Plymouth: the architecture tour

Devastated by the Blitz and rebuilt after WW2, Plymouth boasts the UK’s largest number of post-war listed buildings outside of London. Good enough reason to pay a visit? Indeed, but what makes Devon’s Ocean City so very interesting is the mix of old and new. Starting in the 16th century, our trail features a 1930s Lido, a lighthouse, a museum with a box on top and a bit of Neo Egyptian.

Architecture, Bristol, UK

Bristol: the architecture tour – part 2.

Part Two of our Covid-friendly, walking tour of Bristol’s architectural highlights include Europe’s longest terrace (we think), a Victorian engine house, a Greek Revival chapel with a shiny new extension, a giant’s cave (actually two giants) and the city’s oldest building. For more on Bristol landmarks, see Part One.

UK, Where to stay

New hotels 2020

Despite the challenges facing the hospitality industry, it’s business as usual for some enterprising hoteliers – in fact 2020 has been something of a bumper year for exciting new openings. Our list of eight new hotels reveals a trend for rejuvenating listed landmark buildings: three are Grade I listed; the […]

News, UK

Cornwall: Jail break

An 8.5-million revamp of Cornwall’s historic Georgian jail opens today. Like most of Cornwall’s post-industrial inland towns, Bodmin doesn’t have a lot to offer the visitor, but the superbly creepy Bodmin Jail is one good reason to check it out. The new Bodmin Jail visitor attraction opens today [1 October]; the forecast […]