Out and About
We may be a mile down a no through, single track lane, so you feel far from the Madding Crowd, but the un-pretentious, second largest Herefordshire town of Leominster ( pronounced Lemster ) is a little under 10 minutes away.
It is home to the large auction house, Brightwells – nationally known for their classic car auctions, fine art and antiques as well as monthly general auctions. As a result, the town is home to a large number of emporia – one can easily wile away a day here, and due to the unstuffy nature of the place, the prices to be found are often very reasonable and a little gentle bartering is not misplaced.
Wickton Court was part of the once massive Hampton Court Castle Estate. The panelling in our panelled room was relocated from the castle to their current destination, probably in the 17th century – the inscriptions suggest they were taken from the bed chambers! Hampton Court is now well known for the gardens and regular events take place throughout the spring, summer and autumn and can be reached from here in minutes.
There are 2 golf courses within 5 minutes – one of them, The Grove, also has a full sized bowling alley and a restaurant.
Horse Racing – we have personal interest in this sport and we are well placed for Ludlow, Worcester, Cheltenham and, soon to be re-opened, Hereford course.
The Black and White Village trail will take you through beautiful, unspoilt Herefordshire countryside. We can suggest places to eat on your way round and if you have a dog, places where you will be made welcome.
Cider is a big part of Herefordshire and so there are many orchards. Ledbury is now home to the Bulmers plant and Westons Cider is at Much Marcle and open for tours. Chase Distillery is just a few miles from here owned by the founder of the now global brand Tyrells Crisps. Tours can be organised.
Hay on Wye can be reached via the Black and White trail – the journey is as lovely as the destination! A must when you get there should be the Richard Booth Bookshop on Lion Street. It is the home of the famous Literary Hay Festival held every May and attracts world famed speakers. There are plenty of interesting shops and good places to eat.
Hereford – is just 20 minutes away. It also sits on the Wye and the cathedral is home to the Mappa Mundi. If you carry on in a southerly direction for a further 25 minutes, you will reach Ross-on Wye and the beautiful Symonds Yat. www.baileyshome.com is well worth a visit.
Out towards the close Welsh border, and perhaps en route back from Hay, would be Presteigne. The Judges Lodging Museum is well worth a visit as is The Workhouse Gallery and Café. This town has hardly changed in 100 years and has a strong artistic and cultural hub. Deborah Moggach The author of Best Exotic Marigold Hotel has recently made this her home.
Travelling in a northerly direction along the A49 for 14 miles will bring you to the gorgeous Shropshire town, Ludlow. It provides a perfect backdrop for several very well established festivals. It holds a special place in our hearts as we had a shop there for 9 years and feel proud to know that we were part of the attraction for visitors. It was visited by Sir John Betjamen who declared that Ludlow was “ Probably the loveliest town in England”. We make sure you get to take in the whole place and make the most of the day.
Places to Eat
We do test out our recommendations every so often and add comments to our Wickton Facebook page. We stick to the positive comments when we can justify our enthusiasm based on our personal experience.
Our perennial favourite has to be The Stagg Inn. It is not just down the road, but lunch is as good as dinner.
The Harp at Old Radnor has a fabulous setting and the journey there is delightful. Not open during the week at lunchtime, an early summer evening is lovely.