Tenbury Wells to Leamington Spa via Kenilworth Castle
This was a nice easy drive along the A456, A443, A4133, M5, M42, A4177, and A452. We had finally acquired a map book (thanks Sonja!) and I was enjoying navigational duties. We stopped at a service station in the town of Warwick to fill up with diesel and put some water into the freshwater tank. We refuelled ourselves with tasty Lancashire pasties.
We were due to arrive in Leamington Spa at 5.30pm for dinner at a friend’s house so we had an afternoon to fill and the children needed some exercise. I decided that we should take a look at Kenilworth Castle, once the home of Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester (1532 or 1533 – 1588) a close friend of Queen Elizabeth I. We are all big Horrible Histories fans so this was perfect. I remember visiting the castle during the 1980s when it was just an interesting ruin, but it is now managed by English Heritage. They have rebuilt the Elizabethan formal gardens and turned the Gatehouse into an exhibition centre. There is also the inevitable gift shop and café.
We thought the entrance charges of £9 per adult and £5.40 for children aged between 5 and 17 years were a bit steep, although the under-fives go free. The family ticket is £23 for two adults and up to three children. Parking is free if you present your car park ticket when paying for admission to the castle. We all enjoyed the visit and spent the entire afternoon there. Both children found plenty to do, including a little archery lesson and a witch’s spell trail.
A well-deserved cup of tea and some snacks in the motorhome at the end of the afternoon probably saved us a further £15. Then on to Leamington Spa to where we parked on our friends’ driveway and sampled Leamington fish and chips (no sausage this time). The adults chilled out with a nice glass of wine.