|With the Newport Visitor Information Centre moving to new premises at Newport Bus Station, the Isle of Wight Council’s Museum of Island History is still open for visitors and planning an exciting new exhibition.|
|The Visitor Information Centre is moving out of the Guildhall, and the extra space means there will be more room for displays and interactive school visits to the museum. After a short refurbishment the council’s Heritage Service will re-open the Museum of Island History on Saturday 30 November with a free entry morning to celebrate the new exhibition ‘A Tale of Two Shipwrecks’. Visitors can drop into the museum for free between 10am and 1pm. There will be craft activities for families, hands-on items to explore and identification of archaeological artefacts by Frank Basford from the Portable Antiquities Scheme. From Tuesday December 3 onwards the museum will be open on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10am – 1pm throughout the winter, with two weeks off at Christmas and New Year. Admission to the museum will be reduced to just £1 for the winter period. Curator Corina Westwood said “We’ve enjoyed working with Visit Isle of Wight, and we hope the Newport Visitor Information Centre will be an even bigger success in its new home. “The Museum of Island History is still very much a part of Newport’s visitor attraction, and throughout the winter we have a programme of activities and events as well as the great new exhibition featuring the extraordinary tales of HMS Pomone and the Yarmouth Roads Wreck. There will be some rarely-seen artefacts on show, like the spectacular fitting to a Royal Navy Officer’s brass sword-belt.”|
Places to Visit
Saturday 16 November, Brading, 6pm
As darkness falls, join the New Carnival Company (NCC) to watch an exciting and illuminated new fairy-tale pageant unfold under the stars. Inspired by ancient mythology, local heritage, mosaics and history, the script, led by Island storyteller Sue Bailey, is written by local schools and community groups who will also be bringing different sections to life. Expect to see Medusa, Bacchus, Orpheus and the inimitable Cockeral-headed man as never before! A parade of illuminated costumes and families carrying handmade Roman-style torches will lead into the spectacular performance. Expect dancing, special effects, handmade costumes and giant puppets.
Contact NCC or visit their facebook page for details of creative community workshops making lanterns, shadow puppets and site decorations, or for further details about this unmissable Dark Nights event.
A full day’s fun for all the family!
With some incredible day and night time experiences to be found throughout the season, Robin Hill Country Park is the perfect destination for visitors of all ages. Set in 88 acres of beautiful countryside, the park provides fun, adventure and great family experiences.
Offering a fantastic blend of rides, falconry and adventure play for fun loving families and children, and relaxing woodland gardens, ponds and walks for discerning adults to enjoy, there is something for everyone at Robin Hill.
Plus during every school holidays, we host extra fun and entertainment for all the family! Don’t miss the chance to join us for one of our spectacular ‘electric woods’ events, and see our ancient woodlands beautifully illuminated. www.robin-hill.com
Hovertravel is helping everyone to enjoy the full day on Saturday 8th June when Southsea Common hosts the first ever Portsmouth Revival Festival by running an extra late service at 22:30.
Loretta Lale, Head of Commercial at Hovertravel, explains: “We have been supporting the D-DAY 75 anniversary events throughout the week and we will be running one extra late service from Southsea on Saturday 8th June at 22:30 to allow people who want to enjoy the full 15 minute fireworks display starting at 22:00.”
The Portsmouth Revival will be a weekend of entertainment and activities for all the family featuring music and dancing from the 1940s, arena displays, military and vintage vehicles, vintage fairground rides, a 1940s vintage market, and archive
and war film screenings. There will also be a Red Arrows flypast at some point during Saturday afternoon.
Then the evening starts with the Sunset Concert for Heroes, a 1940s themed concert featuring the Portsmouth Military Wives Choir, the D-Day Darlings, and the Royal Marines Association Concert Band all performing on the main stage at Southsea Common. This is a free and un-ticketed event which starts 19:30 and finishes at 22:00.
Finally on Saturday, there will be a D-Day 75 themed firework display on Saturday 8 June at 10pm, supported by Gunwharf Quays. The fireworks will be lit from barges moored off Southsea seafront, making Southsea Common the perfect place to watch the display and conclude Saturday’s entertainment.
The Island is busily preparing to welcome 36 elite soldiers and their magnificent horses for the Royal Isle of Wight County Show. The countdown has begun until the Household Cavalry comes to town on Sunday 30 June as the ‘mane attraction’ for the long awaited celebration of rural life.
This wouldn’t be happening without generous support from partners, including the Island’s communication company, WightFibre. John Irvine, the Chief Executive, commented: “It’s absolutely brilliant having the Household Cavalry on the Island, it’s a real coup. And supporting this giant community event is a great way for us to give something back to the community, which is what we’re all about.”
To plan a few last details, the partners met up for a bit of horseplay at the Island Riding Centre at Newport. The soldiers and their horses will stay here before performing their world famous Musical Ride at the Northwood Showground. This is a display of military manoeuvres, set to music, and it’s breathtaking in its precision, with lots of pomp and pageantry. The Queen’s Household Cavalry are regulars at Trooping of the Colour, Royal weddings and coronations, and it’s their first time performing on the Isle of Wight.
Louise Buckner, owner of the Island Riding Centre, has a very special reason for hosting the soldiers and their horses on their visit to the Island – her grandfather was in the Household Cavalry in the 1940s. She says: “It’s a massive thing for us having the Queen’s horses and soldiers to stay and it’s great for the Island. We can’t wait! Plus so many friends have offered to ‘help’, so they’ll have the shiniest boots!”
Louise and her husband Paul are building two new stables, especially for the giant horses that carry the huge silver drums. They’ve commissioned Martin Coombes from M&J Animal Housing, who says: “it’s a huge honour to build stables for the Queen”. The stables will have crowns on the top as a tribute to their VIP guests.
The Cavalry – who rotate active service with ceremonial duties – will be transported 100 miles from London to the Island in a coach provided by Seaview Services. Phil Robinson, Chairman of Seaview Services, says: “We’ve moved the Polish Army, the Royal Green Jackets, and lots of sailors including Sir Ben Ainslie. We like to do things properly. We’ll also be bringing over the giant silver drums, if they’ll fit in the coach!”
Mary Robinson, Secretary of Seaview Services, who has been a regular at the County Show all her life, says: “It’s always a lovely day out, and I saw the Household Cavalry at the Lord Mayor’s Parade in London and it made feel proud to be British. We’ll be bringing as many people as we can!”
At the Show, the soldiers will be served lunch in the WI Tent. Hazel Breach, Federal Treasurer of the Isle of Wight Women’s Institute, confirmed that the menu would include a ploughman’s lunch with a selection of cheeses, pate and ham. “And because we’re the WI there will be plenty of cake, from the traditional Victoria sponge to more exotic lime and coconut,” she revealed. “We’re really looking forward to welcoming these lovely young men and intend to spoil them.”
In fact, she confided, her members are so keen to meet the servicemen, that they’ve all volunteered to cater for the lads. “The ladies at the WI are having duals at dawn to decide who’s going to be serving them!” she joked. “I’m chairman of the catering committee, so I’m top of the list! Some of the WI members are even offering their spare bedrooms and saying the horses can stay in the garden!”
Graham Biss, Chairman of the Show, commented: “It has only been possible to bring the Household Cavalry to the Island due to the support from our partners including Wightlink who are bringing the troop across the Solent. This is going to be the event of the summer. As well as the Cavalry, there’s so much else to see and do, from tractor rides, to clay pigeon shooting and handling a pig. Plus you can get up close to loads of amazing animals. We’ll see you there!”
- Tickets are available online now from iwcountyshow.co.uk for £9 for adults (or £10 on the gate) and it’s free for U16s with a paying adult.