Always one to ignore the weather when a trip out is planned, a recent bank holiday weekend was no exception. I work on the philosophy that if it isn’t raining when you plan on leaving the house, you should just head out and see what happens. Which is why, with dark clouds covering most of the sky, Sunday we went to Beamish Living Museum just outside Stanley in County Durham.
Growing up, Beamish was one of my favourite places (it opened in 1972) but we haven’t been there for a few years and never taken the little one. As we were planning on spending the bank holiday weekend with my parents, who only live 45 minutes away, we thought it would be a good day out. And, weather aside, it was. Unfortunately, we didn’t get to see everything because the promised rain eventually arrived with a vengeance – and there is a lot to see:
We did make it through about half the site though including the Pit Village, where we ate amazing fish and chips at Davy’s Coal Fired Fish and Chip Shop.
The Colliery, where we took a tour of a mine (not for those who don’t like tight places).
And the 1913 Town, where we got to wander through houses and shops on the eve of war.
Everyone we met there was great, both at staying character (I’m not sure I could have managed) and sharing information, all the little things that you don’t get from books or TV shows.
Along the way, we rode an open-topped bus (there is also a tram and a railway you can go on), fed chickens and goats, petted the pit ponies and shire horses, and went on the carousel. Best of all for in the eyes of a five-year old – bought sweets at the old-fashioned sweet shop.
Because of the weather we didn’t make it to the 1940’s farm or Georgian Old Hall but the entrance fee (£18.50 per adult with under-fives going free) includes an annual pass so we’ll be able to go back – hopefully in the sunshine – anytime in the next 12 months.