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“Literature is one of the most interesting and significant expressions of humanity.”  Whether your literary interests are for curiosities of P.T. Barnum or the classics of Shakespeare, The Times Cheltenham Literary Festival is an oasis for all.

Shami Chakrabarti, Amit Chaudhur and Sophie Hannah are amongst the Guest Directors of the festival, which runs from 3rd October till 12th.  The Satanic Verses author, Salman Rushdie, and Margaret Atwood, author of The Handmaid’s Tale, will be attending as will David Mitchell who, just ahead of the Festival, will be releasing his new book The Bone Clocks; let’s hope this leads to another hit film!

Ian Rankin will be presenting his short story collection featuring Inspector Rebus and John Boyne, author of The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas, will be a guest on one of the many discussion panels, as will Heston Blumenthal, Alan Titchmarsh, Nicholas Parsons and Helen McCrory amongst many others.  Family Guest Director Michael Rosen will be introducing Jacqueline Wilson, Malorie Blackman and Henry Winkler for our younger readers, along with the mini festival Book It!  With over 500 debates, interviews and workshops, this really is a must-see festival for bookworms everywhere.

According to George Sayer, C.S. Lewis’ auto biographer, the Malvern Hills were where J.R.R. Tolkien found inspiration for the White Mountains in his literary epics The Hobbit and The Fellowship of the Ring. According to Sayer, Tolkien would make recordings whilst taking long walks in the Hills accompanied by C.S. Lewis; so where better to base yourself than the Abbey Hotel.

You can explore the trails of these great authors with either self-guided tours written by local author Carl Steven Flint – you can pick a local guide at the Tourist Information Centre – or a guided tour led by the Malvern Civic Society guides.

Enjoy these beautiful tours and indulge yourself with our Body & Sole package.  This two-day offer includes accommodation, dinner on both nights (plus wine on the first night), full English breakfast and a Body & Sole package to help you unwind after your explorations.

For more information or to make a booking call us on 01684 879193.

We look forward to welcoming you.

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Visit Chedworth’s famous Roman Villa in Yanworth, Gloucestershire, and discover how a then thousand-year-old villa was discovered in 1864 by a Victorian gamekeeper and how he unearthed the first clues that would eventually lead to the spectacular find underground.

Experience how the Romans, some of the wealthiest of that time, lived, worked and socialised at this 4th Century Villa.  Wonder at the intact, brilliantly coloured mosaic floors, the bath houses and under-floor heating – all inventions brought to Britain by the Romans. And with a further dig just having taken place, find out first-hand just what new discoveries have been made.

During the weekend you can watch and participate in Roman re-enactments and browse through market stalls offering many different locally produced food and crafts, such as: glass beads, pottery, jewellery, candles, cheese and honey.  With a family ticket costing just £24, it’s affordable fun for everyone.  For more information visit www.heritageopendays.org.uk.

Here at the Abbey we are also keen on giving value for money. Our Executive Family rooms are spacious and modern, with comfortable seating areas and spectacular views over the Vale of Evesham or Malvern Hills.  Gilchrist & Soames amenities, Wi-Fi and a full English buffet breakfast are all included in the price, so get yourselves a fantastic deal and book on line with us now.

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For all you bird lovers and twitchers out there, the International Centre for Birds of Prey in Newent is holding its fourth Falconry Weekend, two fantastic days of displays, competitions, activities and seminars.

The ICBP are known for being the centre of excellence when it comes to training and breeding birds of prey.  They care deeply for the conservation of species and rehabilitation of birds brought to them for their expertise; and is also home to one of the world’s largest private collection of birds of prey!

Amongst the exhibitors are: The World of Falconry who will be giving talks on trapping in the America’s; Carl Bass will be displaying his fantastic wildlife art; Imperial Bird of Prey Academy will be returning to give a display with three different birds of prey; the British Eagle Hawking Club will be back to give talks about their experiences and display their Eagles. Falconry equipment and gifts will also be available to purchase from Predator Logistics.

If you’d love to fly a bird of prey, don’t miss out on the Lure Swinging competition at 9.30 a.m, as that is the prize on offer; what an incentive to join in!  For more information and to buy tickets visit the Falconry Weekend 2014 website.

Whilst you are in the area, take advantage of the beautiful walks in the Malvern Hills.  At the Abbey Hotel, right in the heart of Malvern, we have the perfect offer to compliment the two day Falconry Weekend.  Two night’s accommodation, dinner on both nights including half a bottle of wine per person on the first night, full English breakfast and walking maps of the Malvern Hills.  For more information on our offers or to make a booking, check out our special offers page.

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Worcester Cathedral, built on the banks of the River Severn, is an imposing structure reflecting every type of English architecture from Norman to Gothic styles.  Built between 1084 and 1504, its famous Norman crypt contains the body of King John, and if the building looks vaguely familiar to you, that is because the west façade can be seen on the back of our £20 notes alongside Sir Edward Elgar.

Worcester Cathedral is the base for the three-day Three Choirs Festival, which claims to be Europe’s oldest; suggestions are that the first festival took place in 1709!  Thousands of visitors from around the world will visit to experience some of the finest music performed at one of our greatest structures.

The renowned Philharmonic Orchestra will join The King’s Sisters, The Royal Marines Association Concert Band and the National Youth Orchestra of Scotland, along with other great guest artists in performing classics such as: The Spirit of England, Britten War Requiem, Mahler Symphony No. 2, and The Lark Ascending.  A truly fabulous day out.  Full details can be found at www.3choirs.org and www.worcestercathedral.co.uk.

Not far from Worcester is the stunning Vale of Evesham; the views are spectacular and can be seen from our very own Priory View Restaurant. What better way to enjoy a traditional three-course Sunday carvery lunch.  For more information take a look at our website.

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What a feast of Blues Upton has to offer from the 18th to the 20th of July.  The Upton Blues Festival increases in popularity each year.  Now in its 14th year, Upton is swamped with Jazz enthusiasts from all over the world who come to enjoy over a hundred gigs, playing music from the Best of British Blues to New Orleans acoustic, and all of it for free!

The festival has become so well known that major international acts travel from far and wide to perform alongside our favourite UK bands.  Some of the acts which will be performing include: The Larry Miller Band, Will Wilde, David Midgen and the Twisted Roots, Stomp & Holler, Rosco Levee & the Southern Slide, and Mitch Laddie, to name but a few.

As well as great music, there will be a variety of music workshops where visitors can try out different instruments and music styles from the experts. Definitely a date to put in your diary!

The Abbey Hotel, only a 20-minute drive from Upton, is the perfect base for your visit.  We offer you a superb range of accommodation and cuisine at competitive prices and whilst you are here, why not take in the unspoilt beauty of the Victorian spa village of Great Malvern?  Popular for its therapeutic water qualities, there are also many historic places of interest and theatres to visit.  For more information take a look at our website, call us on 01684 879193 or email us at abbey@sarova.com.

Musically yours

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If you love animals, then this year’s Cotswold Show at Cirencester Park is a must for your family. See the Shetland Pony National, where these miniatures of the equine world jump scaled-down steeplechase fences in the hope to be taken forward to the London International Horse Show at Olympia later this year.

Our canine friends aren’t missed out either, there are sheepdog displays, gundog training, and even a fun dog show where you can enter your own dog in to competitions such as: Most Handsome Dog, Prettiest Bitch, Waggiest Tail and “the Dog that the judges would most like to take home”! See Hawkeye Falconry’s stunning birds of prey in an incredible demonstration of their aerobatic abilities, definitely not to be missed.

Foodies will be enthralled with this year’s Food Festival with over one hundred stallholders offering sumptuous delicacies. Children will be enthralled by Big Pete’s Monster Truck display, as trucks leap 20ft into the air and vehicles are pulled apart in a ‘Tug of War’ display.

After such an exciting day, we will be waiting to welcome you back at the Abbey Hotel for a family dinner where children aged 12 and under can order from a special menu or eat a children-sized portion from the adult menu for half price. Toddlers aged four and under eat free!

For more information take a look at our website or contact us on 01684 892332 or at abbey@sarova.com

Cotswold Show ®Kevin Mullins Photography  Source: kevinmullinsphotography.co.uk
Cotswold Show
®Kevin Mullins Photography
Source: kevinmullinsphotography.co.uk
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Guests at the Abbey Hotel are never short of artistic diversions to enjoy. For example, the rhythms of New Orleans will be transported to Upton from the 27th to the 29th June, where you can enjoy over sixty concerts covering a plethora of music genres, such as Gypsy/Classical Jazz, Dance, Street, Gospel and Swing, to create a festival full of experience and atmosphere.  The New Orleans Jazz Band, Alan Barnes and Craig Milverton & his Trio are but a few of our best-loved musicians who will be performing over the three days, from midday until late.

That’s not all; festival-goers can enjoy the lively jazz parades featuring Wonderbrass and Brass Volcanoes, who make their debut this year.  There will be stalls alongside the riverside for you to peruse, and for those avid dancers amongst you, dedicated dance marquees with dance bands – don’t worry if you are a little rusty on the dance floor, as there will be dance classes for you to attend too!

More information and a full schedule of events can be found at www.uptonjazz.co.uk, and after all that soul music, why not make your way back to the Abbey Hotel where we are offering our own ‘Body & Sole’ two-day package.  From just £185 per room per night, you can set your own mood music with this hit attraction:-

  • Two nights accommodation
  • Dinner on both nights with half a bottle of wine per person on the first night
  • Full English breakfast
  • Map of the Malvern Hills
  • Comfy bathrobes and slippers
  • Your very own ‘Body & Sole’ pack to soak away the stress

For more information go to our website or contact us on 01684 892 332 or at abbey@sarova.com.

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Bon vivants and foodies alike will be in a fervour over the second Bank Holiday weekend in May, and you will find no better location to be than the Abbey Hotel, at the heart of all that is on offer on Sunday 25th & Monday 26th May.

The Malvern Munch Food Walk is a leisurely six-mile walk around the Malvern Hills with the lure of some exceptional local food and drink whilst listening to live music at stops along the way. Tickets are reasonably priced at £20 and available from the Malvern Tourist Information Centre.  The walk, which is a new addition to the Bank Holiday celebrations, is proving popular so booking early is advised.

A late Sunday lunch at our signature restaurant, the Priory View, (open daily from 6.00pm to 9.30pm) offers a lovely end to your sightseeing, with a spectacular view over the Vale of Evesham.  Fresh, seasonal British and Mediterranean cuisine are on offer from our three-course or à la carte menu.

 

Sunday Lunch in Great Malvern
Sunday Lunch Carvery at the Abbey Hotel

On Monday, the town hosts its 4th annual food festival close-by in the grounds of Great Malvern Priory Church.  The festival promises a day full of delicious events, food stalls, and a cookery demonstration featuring our very own television star, Felice Tochinni, one of the town’s highly acclaimed Chefs.

If you have ever tried your hand at bread making and been disappointed in your results, then Robert Swift, a leading bread maker, will share the secrets of baking the perfect loaf.  Vegetarian food features highly in the festival along with some mouth-watering cultural demonstrations of Egyptian and Asian cuisine.  Children will be entertained by local musicians and street entertainers.

Full information on the above events and a sample menu and wine list for the Abbey Hotel can be found at the following sites:

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Only 20 minutes from the Abbey Hotel lies Worcester Town Centre, the venue for our popular Worcester Motor Festival.  In its 8th year, the festival provides some real treats for the motor enthusiast.

Worcester Motor Festival 2013 Display Source: facebook.com/Worcmotorfest
Worcester Motor Festival 2013 Display
Source: facebook.com/Worcmotorfest

Taking place on Saturday 17th May, 30 of the latest models will be on display including the brand new Ford Kuga and the Fiat 500L, as well as more luxurious and traditional cars, which will be brought to you by the Malvern-based Morgan Motor Company.  If your passion is for a Triumph Herald or a Ford Thunderbird, there will be a fantastic range of over sixty vintage and classic cars from the 1920′s to the 1970′s displayed around the City Centre.

The Worcester Motor Festival promises a lively atmosphere with Salsa, Samba and Merengue music and many motor-themed activities taking place at local businesses.  There will be in-store raffles, quizzes, remote control tracks and a Motor Festival Trail with some great prizes.  Also on offer are 241 admissions at Greyfriars House & Garden and the Museum of Royal Worcester.  For more information visit www.worcesterbid.com/motorfestival.

Worcester Motor Festival 2011
Worcester Motor Festival 2011
Source: facebook.com/Worcmotorfest

On Sunday, why not visit the Weston Cider Mill in Ledbury.  The Abbey is currently offering a two-night Weston Cider break, which includes a visit to the Mill, guided tour, cider tasting and a two-course lunch.  This fantastic offer, which starts from £99 per room per night, includes dinner on both nights (with half a bottle of wine per person on the first night) and a full English breakfast – what a great way to enjoy all that Worcestershire has to offer.  For more information please take a look at our website, call us on 01684 892332 or email us at abbey@sarova.com.

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With its picturesque gardens, the Abbey Hotel is the ideal setting to explore the surrounding counties of Worcestershire, Gloucestershire and Herefordshire. There are many historical sites to visit including the close-by Malvern Museum (previously Malvern Priory and Gatehouse) which is steeped in history.

Dating back to 1480, many historical points of interest remain, including the Porters Squint, used by the porter who monitored all the daily movements of people and goods to the Priory estate.  It can still be seen in the archway today.  After Henry VIII’s dissolution of the monasteries, only Malvern’s Priory Church and Gatehouse survived. It was gifted to the Malvern Museum Society and is now a Grade II Listed Scheduled Ancient Monument.

Finish your day of culture back at the Abbey Hotel’s Priory View Restaurant for a special treat.  Enjoy a pot of afternoon tea with a range of sandwiches, scones with clotted cream and jam along with a slice of chef’s delicious cake.

Afternoon Tea at The Abbey
Afternoon Tea at The Abbey

Refreshed, you should be ready for an evening of sixties nostalgia! Historic Huntingdon Hall is the venue for the Counterfeit Sixties (www.visitworcestershire.org/Worcester-Counterfeit-Sixties-Show).  Re-live the sounds of the swinging sixties, with their tribute to over 25 bands including: The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Who, The Dave Clark Five, The Kinks and The Monkeys.  Members of the Counterfeit Sixties have individually worked with renowned artists such as The Searchers, The Ivy League, The Fortunes and The Tremeloes, making them Britain’s number one tribute show.  It’s not just about the music though, the show takes you back in time with flashbacks of the era including television programmes, adverts, clothes and clips from the original bands, a truly entertaining evening.

Photo: Counterfeit Sixties Show  Source: liveshowentertainment.co.uk
Photo: Counterfeit Sixties Show
Source: liveshowentertainment.co.uk

After such an exciting evening, you can look forward to a comfortable and peaceful night’s sleep in one of our 103 individually decorated bedrooms, a room for everyone!  We look forward to welcoming you at the Abbey Hotel; for more information take a look at our website or contact us on 01684 892332 or at abbey@sarova.com.

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