KNUTSFORD REX PROBUS CLUB: HOLIDAY IN NORTH LINCOLNSHIRE 13 – 18 SEPTEMBER 2020
These arrangements were cancelled on 8th July 2020 in view of the ongoing coronavirus situation. Although the hotel had reopened it was implementing the recommended Covid-19 precautions which would have detracted from a relaxing group holiday. Affected members were informed. It was not possible to revive the arrangements for 2021 but it is hoped to arrange an equivalent holiday nearer to Knutsford in 2022.
FOREST PINES SPA & GOLF RESORT NEAR LINCOLN AND HULL
The 2020 Probus Holiday was arranged for Sunday 13th to Friday18th September 2020, centred at the the DoubleTree by Hilton Forest Pines Spa & Golf Resort. Nestled in 190 acres of beautiful Lincolnshire woodland, it is situated just two minutes from Junction 4 of the M180 with excellent motorway links, about 2½ hours from Knutsford. The hotel offers stylish accommodation with great leisure facilities and a 27-hole championship golf course. Kingston upon Hull, UK City of Culture 2017, and historic Lincoln are within easy reach.
You can relax on the terrace at the Lounge Bar which offers drinks, light bites and afternoon tea. Alternatively, the Pines Bar offers golf course views, drinks and light snacks throughout the day. The luxurious spa has six treatment rooms, nail bar, pool, sauna, steam room and whirlpool. The Forest Pines health club includes a state-of-the-art fully equipped gym and two new group exercise studios.
On one of the days you can drive across the spectacular Humber Bridge (toll) for atmosphere, culture and history in Hull’s Old Town. The characterful quarter features museums, including the Streetlife Museum, and Hull and East Riding Museum of Archaeology, as well as the beautiful Hepworth Arcade. There is also The Deep, one of the UK’s most spectacular aquariums. On another day, drive south along Ermine Street to visit Lincoln Castle, built by William the Conqueror in 1068, where you can view the original copy of Magna Carta from 1215. Also take the opportunity to visit the wonderful Lincoln Cathedral. Both Hull and Lincoln have easy-to-reach park-and-ride arrangements. Or step back in time at RAF Scampton Heritage Centre, housed in one of the original World War II hangars: it is renowned as the former home of the famous World War II Dambusters 617 squadron. RAF Scampton is also home to the Red Arrows.
We reserved a mix of 15 rooms, some of which have walk-in showers. The rate for a couple in a double or twin room for dinner, bed and breakfast for five nights was to be £169 per night, including group dinner in a private room, free car parking and use of the swimming pool and other leisure facilities. The single room rate was to be £134.
The hotel is between 100 and 120 miles from Knutsford depending on the choice of motorway route and should take around 2 – 2½ hours’ driving time. The hotel’s website at www.forestpineshotel.co.uk gives more background information.
Gainsborough Old Hall (an English Heritage property) is worth a small detour and can be visited as a lunchtime stop en route from Knutsford to Forest Pines on the Sunday, or on the return journey on Friday. The Hall was built in the latter part of the 15th century and is among the biggest and best-preserved medieval manor houses in England. It has an impressive kitchen with an enormous fireplace, a noble great hall, and an imposing lodgings tower. Lunch may be taken in the café.
There are other attractions within reach of Forest Pines. Next to the Humber Bridge, on the waterfront at Barton upon Humber, you will find Waters’ Edge Country Park and Visitor Centre. It is an environmentally friendly building offering information about the area and excellent views of the bridge, the nature reserve and across the Humber estuary to Hull.
Attractions in North Lincolnshire include Brigg, Epworth Old Rectory (Wesley connections), Normanby Hall Country Park (mansion, grounds and Go Ape!). For more tourist information and ideas visit www.visitnorthlincolnshire.com.
For a day out by the sea (weather permitting) Cleethorpes and Grimsby are not too far away.
If you are interested or require more information on this holiday please contact organiser Jim Flett.
KNUTSFORD REX PROBUS CLUB: HOLIDAY IN CONWY, NORTH WALES 8 – 13 SEPTEMBER 2019
LUXURY ON THE NORTH WALES COAST
Our 2019 Probus Holiday took place between Sunday 8th and Friday13th September, centred at the delightful contemporary 4* Quay Hotel and Spa located on the breath-taking Deganwy Marina, with lovely views over the Conwy Estuary and Conwy Castle, now a World Heritage site, in North Wales.
This fully non-smoking, privately owned and managed hotel has been meticulously designed throughout, and its architecture epitomises cool sophistication on the North Wales coast. The large, airy spaces, understated chic design and sharp styling combine to create a truly inspirational hotel experience. Wall-to-wall windows with sea views flood the interiors with natural light, and the use of specially quarried Welsh slate makes a thoroughly individual design statement. The rooms incorporate plush beds dressed in crisp Egyptian cotton, luxurious bathrooms and unrivalled in-room facilities.
Our visitors were particularly impressed by the finish of the hotel, its public areas and its large bedrooms, which are all maintained to a high standard. The hotel is located within a very high-class quiet and private estate of top-end villas. The moment you enter the 4 star hotel in Deganwy Quay you are welcomed into a world of comfort and a sense of belonging. Set on the idyllic Conwy Estuary, the Quay Hotel and Spa commands awe-inspiring views of the most magical scenery in North Wales and is located within easy reach of Snowdonia National Park, the neighbouring medieval town of Conwy and Victorian Llandudno, all within close access from Knutsford: “One Hour’s Drive and a Million Miles Away…”
Voted “Best Hotel in Wales”, one of the “Top Ten Luxury Seaside Hotels in Britain”, rated “Excellent” by Trip Advisor, with an AA rosette for food, and with masses of free car parking, this is set to be one of our best Probus Holiday venues!
Each of the hotel’s 74 bedrooms, consisting of Classic, Superior, Executive, Suites and Penthouses have been exquisitely created with all the extravagance and quality of comfort you would expect from one of the best hotels in Britain. Every one of the luxurious bedrooms offers sumptuous soft furnishings with elegantly-styled en-suite bathrooms. Each room provides 24 hour Room Service, Freeview TV and complimentary WiFi Internet access. The Executive Rooms, Suites and Penthouses present breath-taking vistas of the Conwy Estuary, Castle and mountains. The Classic Rooms enjoy views of the Deganwy Quay Marina, or the exquisite “Zen” styled courtyard. The majority of the bedrooms also boast garden or balcony seating to enhance your enjoyment of the stunning surroundings. We have inspected all of the room styles, and we can confirm that they are all of a generous size and with an excellent finish.
The holiday this year was organised by Richard Fenby and Brian Williams and started with drinks and dinner in the Castle Suite prior to which there was a planning meeting regarding the activities during the holiday. The philosophy of the holiday is that organised events are available for those that wish to participate although members are free to do as they choose with the proviso that everyone meets for a daily meeting over drinks followed by dinner.
On Monday there was a private guided tour of Conwy’s amazing 13th Century Castle during which the fascinating early medieval history was explained. Lunch was at the Groes Inn which lays claim to be the oldest pub in Wales. After lunch some of the group visited Plas Mawr, an Elizabethan Town House, Aberconwy House, the Royal Cambrian Academy and the Smallest House in Britain.
On Tuesday Jim Flett led a day trip on a steam train to Caernarfon and Beddgelert and starting at the northern terminus of the steam-hauled, narrow gauge Welsh Highland Railway.
On Wednesday Brian Williams led an excellent all-day coach trip through the Snowdonia countryside to the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct, an amazing World Heritage Site. The party took a private Canal Cruise across the aqueduct with afternoon tea. Later in the afternoon there was a coach tour of the Vale of Llangollen before the return journey to the hotel.
On Thursday there were visits to various local tourist places including Penrhyn Castle, Betws-y-Coed, Aber Falls, Llandudno, Great Orme, Portmeirion Village, Powis Castle, Bodnant Gardens and Plas Nywedd.
On Friday some members joined Scott Martin for a 5 mile walk on the North Wales Coastal on the attractive Llyn Peninsula starting at Morfa Nefyn walking towards Nefyn, then to Porthdinllaen with lunch at the famous Ty Coch Inn and returning to across on the picturesque beach, before driving home the 100 miles to Knutsford.
At the final dinner on Thursday the attendees thanked the organisers for organising such a wonderful collegiate holiday. Apart from Monday, when there were some showers the weather was sunny but cloudy and there was no impact on the planned activities.