Summer Wildlife of Shropshire
Code: CSWWSPrint page
Meadows & hills
Explore some of Shropshire’s wildlife hotspots including the Long Mynd, Stiperstones, Whitcliffe Common and Wenlock Edge. We'll enjoy a cornucopia of birds, butterflies, dragonflies, flowers and fungi whilst walking up to 6 miles (9.5km) each day. Suitable for any level of experience, with no prior knowledge required.
- Leisurely walks with regular stops to watch wildlife
- Share enthusiasm and improve your wildlife ID skills
- Flexible itineraries will take into account prevailing weather conditions and any reported sightings
- High quality Full Board en-suite accommodation and excellent food in our Country House
- Guidance from a knowledgeable HF Holidays’ leader, to ensure you get the most from your holiday
- All essential transport on a comfortable, good-quality mini-coach or other mode of transport, e.g. boat
- Entrance fees to venues included as part of your holiday’s itinerary
Longmynd House is set in a wonderful elevated location above the town of Church Stretton. With excellent walks on the doorstep, and extensive public rooms, it's an excellent base for our walking and leisure activity holidays.
Longmynd House has 50 bedrooms, all in the main building. There are also 8 brick-built lodges in the grounds - a popular alternative for families or couples, with all the facilities you would expect from HF Holidays.
Choose your room
• Check-in from 2:30pm
• Comfortable accommodation
• En-suite bathroom with bath or shower
• Tea and coffee-making facilities
• Single rooms are available at no extra charge
• Check-in from 1:30pm
• Enjoy extra space or exceptional views
• Toweling robe, complimentary slippers
• Same facilities as our classic rooms
• Available from an extra £10 per person per night
• Check-in from 2:30pm
• 3 or 4 beds
• Same facilities as our classic rooms
• Full sized twin or double beds for adults and bunk or occasional beds for children
|• Excellent boot and drying rooms
• Extensive public rooms
• Large dining room with outstanding views of Stretton Valley
• Lounge bar with outstanding views of Stretto Valley
• Central lounge
|• Three additional rooms, can be used for other purposes
• Free WiFi is available in some public rooms and bedrooms
• Range of board games and books
|• Large heated swimming pool (open May to September)
• Woodland walks on the slopes beneath the hotel
• Sculpture trail
|All holidays at our Country Houses are full board accommodation including evening meal on arrival to breakfast on the day of your departure. All of our Country Houses have a well-stocked bar serving local beers, wine and spirits.
√ Start your day with our extensive breakfast.
All of our bars are stocked with locally sourced drinks so you can really soak up your surroundings.
- Assistance dogs accompanying visually or hearing impaired guests are welcome; dogs must be kept on a lead or harness at all times.
- Fire evacuation notices are displayed in the bedrooms and throughout the hotel. Each room has its own smoke sensor and fire alarm. In the event of a fire a very loud continuous alarm sounds and emergency lighting comes on. We have portable Deaf guard fire alarm system for those who are hard of hearing. This consists of a vibrating pad to go under the pillow and a bright strobe light. The Deaf guard is triggered when main alarm is activated.
- In the case of evacuation there are fire exits in every function room, bar and restaurant as well as the main front entrance. On the first, second and third floors there are fire exits at either end of the corridors which open to an emergency fire escape stairwell.
- Please advise reception on check in if you think you would require assistance in the event of an emergency. Door hangers are available in the rooms which can be used to indicate a need for assistance. Fire extinguishers are found throughout the building, as are fire call points. If you discover a fire please call 9-999 from your room phone, raise the alarm and alert a member of staff.
You can check in to your room from 2.30pm onwards (premium rooms from 1pm). Please join us for afternoon tea. This is the first occasion when everyone in the country house meets together – an opportunity to meet your leader and fellow guests, and find out more about your holiday.
Sometimes things happen beyond our control – the weather, traffic jams or changes at the places we visit. If we need to adjust your holiday programme, for whatever reason, your leader will help smooth the way. On our Natural World holidays we spend most of the day outdoors, exploring by mini-coach or on foot, walking up to 6 miles (9.5km) each day, stopping to enjoy the wildlife as we go.
‘Back to Purple’, The Bog and the Stiperstone ridge
After a hearty breakfast we start our day at The Bog Visitor Centre and explore the surrounding area where attempts are being made to provide a habit for the endangered Grayling butterfly. A stroll onto the southern end of the Stiperstone ridge and a look at the ‘Back to Purple’ project and its importance for the Emperor Moth and wildlife in general. Look out for red grouse, skylarks, merlins and meadow pipits. A day of gaunt rock formations, old mine workings and dramatic views.
On Wenlock Edge
This morning we will take transport to Wenlock Edge and walk along this fine limestone escarpment to the small historic town of Much Wenlock. The ridge is mainly wooded but thanks to the National Trust, openings have been created to give fine views of the surrounding countryside. We will lookout for woodland birds, which include the lesser spotted woodpecker, butterflies and plants such as spurge laurel, enchanter’s nightshade and viper’s bugloss and maybe late flowering orchids.
Our Discovery Points help you make the most out of your free day. There’s plenty of maps and a selection of the best local walking routes, as well as weather forecasts and public transport options – plus details about other places to visit.
Onto The Long Mynd
Walking from the house to Ashes Hollow, the best valley on the Long Mynd for birding. We will then ascend at a gentle pace with plenty of time for observation to Pole Bank the highest point of The Mynd before a gentle descent to Pole Cottage for our transport home. En-route we hope to see, Red Kite, Buzzard, Kestrel and if our luck is in Merlin. We should see plenty of Stonechat and maybe Whinchat in the upper reaches. We will also look out for a variety of acid loving plants.
The Mortimer Forest, Whitcliffe Common and The River Teme
We start the day by taking transport to the Mortimer Forest from where we will walk into Ludlow via Whitcliffe Common and alongside the River Teme. Mortimer Forest has a unique sub species of Fallow deer which we will look for, as well as a variety of butterflies which patrol its rides and open glades. Whitcliffe Common is noted for hornbeam trees and visiting Hawfinches. The River Teme is well known for the cleanliness of its water which supports a substantial number of grayling and other fish. It’s a good place to look for Kingfishers and Dippers.
Venus Pool and Attingham Park
Transport will take us to Venus Pool near to Shrewsbury. At this time of year, wader species in addition to those encountered in the Spring may be seen. Green Sandpiper and Greenshank are regularly seen. Ringed Plover, Ruff and Little Stint are less commonly seen. The surrounding fields and hedgerows are home to flocks of finches and buntings. Sightings of Green Woodpeckers are frequent and evidence of otters, foxes, badgers, rabbits and hares noted. We end the day with a visit to Attingham Park and a walk through the deer park, woodland and river.
Depart after a leisurely breakfast
What to bring
- Outdoor clothing appropriate to the season, including waterproofs (essential)
- Strong, comfortable footwear with a good tread is essential
- A telescope (if you have one) and binoculars (essential)
- Recommended Bird guide (optional) - The New Mitchell Beazley Birdwatcher’s Pocket Guide
During your stay at Longmynd House you may enjoy visiting the following places of interest, either in your free time, or on your journey to and from Shropshire:
The attractive small town of Church Stretton is around 10 minutes' walk away. After the arrival of the railway, the town grew in the Victorian and Edwardian eras and became known as 'Little Switzerland' due to the dramatic hills on both sides of the valley. Today the town retains its bygone charm and has a range of facilities including a variety of small shops, banks, cafés, pubs and a supermarket.
Easily reached by train, or around 20 minutes' drive away, Ludlow is a particularly attractive market town. The historic centre retains many of its medieval buldings, and is towered over by its well-preserved castle. In recent years the town has developed as something of a gastronomic centre, being home to celebrated Michelin-starred restaurants and many acclaimed local food producers. www.ludlowcastle.com
A little further afield, about 45 minutes' drive from Church Stretton, are the many excellent museums of Ironbridge Gorge. Known as the 'birthplace of the Industrial Revolution' it was here that Abraham Darby perfected the manufacture of cast iron which was later used to build the area's iconic iron bridge across the River Severn. Today there are 10 museums in the gorge including the Museum of Iron, the Coleport China Museum and the excellent Blists Hill Victorian town. www.ironbridge.org.uk/
Severn Valley Railway
The Severn Valley Railway is one of Britain's premier steam railways. This lovingly recreated Great Western Railway branch line is now run largely by volunteers and is home to an impressive collection of locomotives. As its name suggests the line follows the rural valley of the River Severn from Bridgnorth to Kidderminster. The nearest station at Bridgnorth is about 40 minutes' drive from Church Stretton. www.svr.co.uk
Acton Scott Working Farm
Situated just 10 minutes' drive from Church Stretton, the Acton Scott Working Farm Museum is a living museum based around a restored Victorian farm. In recent years this has featured in the BBC2 series Victorian Farm and Escape in Time. www.actonscott.com
Also easily reached by train, or a 30 minute drive, Shrewsbury is the county town of Shropshire. The town centre is particularly attractive featuring many black and white timber houses dating from the 15th and 16th centuries.
The small town of Much Wenlock, about 30 minutes' drive from Church Stretton, is particularly attractive with many black and white timbered houses. Despite its small size the town can claim to be the birthplace of the modern Olympic Games.
The cathedral city of Hereford, is just under an hour's drive away, and can also be reached by direct train from Church Stretton. Hereford Cathedral houses a chained library and the famous Mappa Mundi, a 13th century map of the world. www.herefordcathedral.org
A grand 18th century house surrounded by an extensive deer park, located outside Shrewsbury, around 25 minutes' drive away. Now managed by the National Trust you can visit the ornate rooms and explore the walled garden and grounds. www.nationaltrust.org.uk/attingham-park
This former medieval fortress has been remodelled over more than 400 years – each generation adding to the magnificent collection of paintings, sculpture, furniture and tapestries. Theworld-famous garden is overhung with clipped yews, and shelters rare and tender plants. The castle is located near Welshpool, about 45 minutes' drive from Church Stretton. www.nationaltrust.org.uk/powis-castle
Just under an hour's drive north of Church Stretton, Chirk Castle is a fine medieval fortress completed in 1310. As well as military displays, the castle was also a domestic home for many centuries, and is surrounded by excellent gardens. www.nationaltrust.org.uk/chirk-castle
Powis Castle image ©National Trust/Andrew Butler, Chirk Castle image ©National Trust ImagesMatthew Antrobus
Travel to Church Stretton
Our address is: Longmynd House, Cunnery Road, Church Stretton, Shropshire SY6 6AG
The nearest train station is Church Stretton, which is less than a mile from Longmynd House. However the house is at the top of a very steep hill (it has great views!) so a taxi is recommended, particularly if you have heavy luggage. Please note that Church Stretton is a small town and taxis are not always available.
For train times and general rail enquiries visit www.nationalrail.co.uk or call 03457 484950 (from outside the UK call +44 20 7278 5240).
HF station transfer - great value!
Our station transfer operates every Friday and Monday between Church Stretton station and Longmynd House. The pickup is at 3.15pm from Church Stretton station. On departure day the transfer will get you back to the station for 9.15am or 9.45am. This transfer costs just £7 return, however a place must be reserved 7 days in advance by calling 0345 470 7558.
If you can’t meet our station transfer it is possible to book a taxi. Taxis can be limited so please pre-book. Details of our current recommended taxi company and rates will be sent to you with your booking. The return taxi journey can be arranged on your behalf by the Longmynd House Manager.
Follow the A49 to Church Stretton. At the traffic lights turn off the A49 into the town. At the first T junction turn left into the High Street. Go straight over the mini-roundabout, and then take the next right into Cunnery Road. Follow the road up a steep hill and around a hairpin bend. Longmynd House is at the top of the hill on the left hand side. Look out for our sign. A car park is available in the grounds with free parking.
Travelling from overseas
Manchester Airport has the quickest onward connections to Church Stretton. Trains from the airport take 2 hours, with one change at Crewe. See www.nationalrail.co.uk for train times.
Flying to London Heathrow airport is another option, but has a longer onward train journey - allow at least 4½ hours to reach Church Stretton by train. There are a variety of routes, but the most convenient is to change at London Paddington and Newport as this avoid crossing London. See www.nationalrail.co.uk for train times.
John Parkinson has had a life-long interest in the Natural World and spent a lot of time during his formative years in a rural environment, spending as much time as was possible outside with nature, camping amongst it, photographing it or observing it as closely as possible. He is an active member of his local Wildlife Trust and can be found in his spare time wandering around local nature reserves, binoculars around his neck and camera in hand. He welcomes this opportunity to pass on his enthusiasm for birdlife and hopes you will join him on the holiday.
Dates & Prices
|Date||Description||Nights||Brochure price||Buy today for||Book|
|10 Aug 2018||CSWWS - Summer Wildlife of Shropshire - Church Stretton||7||£945.00||£845.00||Book Now|
Prices are per person
- Premium single room: £15 per night
- Premium twin/double room: £10 per person per night
- Non-member associate fee: £10 per person