Well Dressing

When I was first told about well dressing, I imagined a group of immaculately groomed lovies in suits and frocks. As it turns out, well dressing is pretty much as it sounds – dressing up wells. Just up the road from us is the picture-postcard village of...

Fantasy Wire Fairies – Wish Maker

Those of you who’ve stayed with us already will probably have noticed the beautiful sculpture that greets you, on your way to reception. What you won’t have seen, of course, is how she’s actually made. During lockdown, thanks to COVID-19 we’ve...
Cycling The Manifold Valley

Cycling The Manifold Valley

The beautiful Manifold Valley lies just over 10 minutes from The Laurels. If you’re into geology, it was formed about 325 million years ago by the erosive effects of water on the Carboniferous Limestone plateau, when Britain lay close to the Equator. If you’re not –...
Kingfishers and the Caldon Canal

Kingfishers and the Caldon Canal

This sounds like a bit of a QI question, but did you know Kingfisher feathers are actually brown in colour and not blue? Their vivid colour is actually iridescence, not pigment – the pigment is brown. Interference between different wavelengths of light reflected from...
Alton Towers Roller Coaster Restaurant Review

Alton Towers Roller Coaster Restaurant Review

Dining With a Twist You may well have been unfortunate enough to see the odd (in many ways) video of people trying to eat and drink on a roller coaster, or the Big Dipper as us oldies used to call it. These things rarely, if ever ended well, usually resulting in the...
A History of Oakamoor & The Churnet Valley

A History of Oakamoor & The Churnet Valley

ARCHAEOLOGICAL INTEREST AND EARLY DEVELOPMENT The Churnet Valley has a long history of industrialisation and exploitation of local minerals. Local supplies of iron ore (mined from the area to the north-west of Oakamoor), charcoal (from the immediate wooded hills and...