Focus On: Longhorsley and Morpeth
Longhorsley is a picturesque village in Northumberland and is the closest locale to Forget Me Not Country Park, with the historic market town of Morpeth just 7 miles down the A697.
Longhorsley parish has a population of just 800, not including those on the park. Yet this small village has a long history, with references to the settlement having been made as early as 1196, where it’s noted as a ‘woodland clearing where horses are kept’. The beautiful Longhorsley Manor and Linden Hall make for prominent and prestigious landmarks, both as old manor houses owned by notable families.
Quaint and quiet, you’ll find a shop, pub and school in the village – but if you fancy more to do and explore, a quick drive down to Morpeth should meet your needs. Historically a large market town (particularly for the sale of cattle), Morpeth today has a town centre full of independent shops, alongside some tourist attractions that you won’t find anywhere else.
The Morpeth Chantry Bagpipe Museum is a real one-off, playing home to several historic bagpipes including many from across Northumbria, and makes for the perfect place to listen to some traditional music of the county.
The scheduled ancient monument of Morpeth Castle looks down over the town and has been recently restored by the Landmark Trust. Now available as a holiday home for visitors, it’s worth a peek around if you can.
A base to explore Northumberland
Both Longhorsley and Morpeth alike make for a great base to explore the rest of Northumberland. Just south, you’ll find the Lady of the North sculpture Northumberlandia, built from an impressive 1.5-million tonnes of earth from the nearby Shotton Surface Mine. The site was formerly opened by Princess Anne in 2012, and since then has attracted hundreds of thousands of tourists and media attention alike, including cricketer Freddie Flintoff and cyclist Rob Penn visiting as part of the Sky TV series ‘Freddie Fries Again’.
For those with a taste of adventure, you’ll find a nuclear bunker (!) under the former council building at Morpeth County Hall!
Further down the road, you’ll find the bustling city of Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, with its shops, sights and riverside attractions, as well as the shopping metropolis that is the intu MetroCentre in Gateshead. There really is something for everyone – whether you’re looking for a day out in nature or inside with some comfy commercialism!
This all said, if you’re not in the mood to explore, there’s no reason to leave Forget Me Not Country Park. The on-site Prince William Bar & Grill is a great place for a meal, drinks or meeting friends and there’s a true sense of community and friendship amongst our holiday home owners.
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The Maguire Family.