Summer Outing, June 2009

Summer Outing, 17/06/2009
Some 52 people were on the coach for our 2009 Summer Outing last month. Our initial stop was just an hour away at Gooderstone Water Gardens in Norfolk, a first visit for the majority of members. After admiring the skill of the driver in manoeuvring the large coach off a narrow lane into the small car park, we were greeted at the gate by the lady in charge who distributed entrance stickers (marked to entitle us to the included drink of tea!) and leaflets explaining all about the venue. The weather was fine and we were able to enjoy the wonderful vistas created by the lakes and the numerous bridges connecting them. Conveniently the bridges were numbered so reducing the chance of getting lost! Several people said that they would certainly return to Gooderstone at a later date.
From here we travelled to Gressenhall Farm and Workhouse, just over half an hour’s drive away. Again we were greeted personally and given a short talk about Gressenhall before leaving the coach. At this time, some made for the excellent café for a bite to eat, some to the courtyard gardens whilst others went directly to the farm. Gressenhall Farm is run as a traditional 1920s farm with rare breed animals and horses working the fields and was worth the visit alone. For those less able there were complimentary carts to travel around in, with the added benefit of the guide to explain things. Later, and split into two groups, we had fascinating guided tours of the Workhouse where we learned all about the history of workhouses in general and Gressenhall in particular. After the tour there was just time to explore the museum before leaving. After a very enjoyable day, the rain obligingly started as we got back onto the coach which brought us back to Stowmarket on schedule at 6.30pm.
In the time available it was not possible to explore everything that Gressenhall has to offer and, as with Gooderstone, many people plan to visit again on their own. For those who did not have the opportunity to join us, below are links to both places so you can read all about them.
Click the ‘play’ arrow to see a few pictures taken on the day

 Visit the web sites

Gooderstone Water Gardens & Nature Trail
Gressenhall Farm & Workhouse