History is coming alive for families at Powderham Castle in Devon this summer.
The 600 year old home to the Courtenay family near Exeter is set to keep kids entertained all summer long with different activities planned each week of the holidays.
From delving into the incredible past of animals and critters from the Tudor times, a living history group bringing the grounds to life with an encampment portraying life in the 17th century, a pooches at Powderham event, interactive pirate-themed sessions from a theatre company, live parrot shows, and a visit from Tractor Ted, kids will be spoilt for choice.
Medieval Madness at Powderham
We recently had a great day out at Powderham for their Medieval Madness event. I’d not been since I camped in the grounds as a Girl Guide (yes, really), and that was nigh on 25 years ago (no comments, please), so it was lovely to see it all again on a family day out with my parents, boys and nephews.
It was part of a week-long event with so much going on throughout the day. The highlight for us all was watching the Knights of Royal England’s amazing jousting displays. The boys had no idea what to expect, but loved the sword-fighting and jousting. Children were invited to get involved at the start (obviously not with the swords or animals), and the whole audience got behind their ‘team’ cheering and booing as the knights were knocked off their horses. It was a real spectacle and something completely different to watch.
We also saw one of the Pocketwatch Theatre Company’s performances of medieval mischief which transported you back to medieval times, and even involved the children trying their hand at archery and child-friendly jousting.
As part of the event, the boys were able to paint their own shields or swords (some more skilfully than others…), as well as draw their own creations on the courtyard tarmac.
As well as the Medieval Madness activities, we had free reign of the castle and its grounds, so made the most of a tractor trailer ride through Powderham’s deer park – spotting so many of the beautiful creatures, a play in the park, and a visit to see the animals in the castle’s walled garden. The boys were able to let off some more steam playing on the grass where we had our picnic.
We had a great day, and the summer holiday events look set to be just as much fun:
Beastly Bygones Week – July 29 to August 2
Beastly Bygones Week will delve into the incredible past of historic animals and critters including rats, giant land snails and frogs from the Tudor times. Children will be able to enjoy interactive sessions with Zoolab where they can have a hands-on experience with the fascinating creatures.
Living History Week – August 5 to 9
Living History Week will allow visitors to step back in time to the 17th Century when Powderham Castle played a crucial role in the English Civil War. Wardour Garrison, the premier 17th century living history group as seen on TV, will bring the grounds to life with an encampment portraying trades, crafts and life as it was in 17th century England.
Pooches at Powderham Week – August 12 to 16
Pooches at Powderham week will celebrate your canine companions with exciting dog shows, have-a-go sessions and the chance to stock up on all your puppy’s needs with stallholders across the castle grounds for your ideal dog-friendly day out.
Pirates and Parrots Week – August 19 to 23
Pirates & Parrots Week at Powderham will include the Pocketwatch Theatre Company putting on their fantastic interactive pirate-themed sessions, plus live parrot shows where the kids can hold them and learn all about them.
Tractor Ted at Powderham – August 26 to 30
Rounding off the summer holidays, Tractor Ted, the universally-loved green tractor will be chugging into Powderham for the last week of August. This little green tractor has wowed millions of children over the years with his real life farm stories which are told in a fun, educational and totally charming manner. All stories are told with young children in mind as they are introduced to what is happening on the farm from potato harvesting to milking the cows.
All the activities are included in Powderham’s day admission prices, and there’s also a seven day free return so there’s no pressure to fit everything into one day – just go back again within the week!
Disclaimer – we were given admission to Powderham Castle to enjoy their Medieval Madness activities, for the purpose of this review, but opinions, words and pictures are my own.
How did I do?
Did you enjoy this post? If your’e into castles, how about you check out this post about Framlingham Castle in Suffolk. Or you might like some of my other days out or travel bits and pieces. If you’re local you MUST read my Ultimate Summer Days Out Guide For Families in and around Plymouth. Also read all about our brilliant day at Paulton’s Park and Peppa Pig World or about our AMAZING farm stay at Glynn Barton Farm Cottages in Cornwall. Or Why a holiday to Bluestone is awesome with another family.
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