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Dates for the Diary April 2014

GRAND NATIONAL Saturday April 5th - Aintree, Liverpool  

You don’t have to be a keen follower of horse racing to enjoy the excitement and atmosphere on the world famous Grand National; where 40 fabulous horses and their rides leap across famous obstacles such as Becher’s Brook and Canal Turn to complete two circuits of the course at Aintree.

Grand opening day is on Thursday April 3rd; Ladies day is on Friday April 4th and the actual Grand National Race that we all love is on Saturday April 5th.

More information is on:

THE BOAT RACE Sunday April 6th - London

This year the annual boat race between Oxford and Cambridge, or formally the 2014 BNY Mellon Boat Race, is taking place on Sunday 6th April. Yes, in our childhood they always used to be on a Saturday but times move on! The latest information is that it will start at 5.55pm late afternoon.

The Boat Race is one of the oldest sporting events in the world and is watched by thousands - pick your space on the banks between Putney and Mortlake in London early. Otherwise simply join the millions who watch the race on V around the world.

More information on:

EASTER Good Friday April 18th; Easter Sunday April 20th - Nationwide

In case you haven’t officially marked the dates yet, this year Easter falls towards the end of April so fingers crossed the weather might be good for everyone to enjoy the four day break.

There are of course religious services and Easter events taking place right across the UK this weekend, and one of the customary activities will be the giving of chocolate Easter eggs.

This is a fun tradition that comes from an old custom of giving eggs as a symbol of Jesus’ resurrection. In fact eggs have been used in festivals by ancient civilisations long before the time of Christ, but the custom has remained and evolved. The first sweet eggs were made of sugar and sometimes marzipan but today chocolate eggs are the norm.

More about the background to Easter is at:


ST GEORGE’S DAY Wednesday April 23rd - Nationwide

There is growing interest in celebrating St George’s Day. St George is the official patron saint of England and the wonderful tale about his slaying of a dragon keeps his story alive across the world.

Several towns are putting on big celebrations including grand parades and fun events. For instance Nottingham is planning a major parade featuring St George and the Dragon of course plus dance teams, bands and other performers; Salisbury City Council has a number of events through out the day including a Civic Parade; a fun Punch & Judy for younger people and a special Medieval Salisbury and St George’s Day Tour, culminating of course is the battle between St George and the Dragon, which starts at 1pm. Dover Castle in Kent is putting on a Step through England's story, with medieval crafts and cookery, and what is expected to be a thrilling skill-at-arms horse show which of course includes St George valiantly doing battle with the dastardly dragon!

HARROGATE SPRING FLOWER SHOW Thursday April 24th to Sunday April 27th - Harrogate

This is a special year for the famous Harrogate Flower Shows as in July this year a stage of the famous Tour de France cycle race will pass through the breathtaking scenery of the Yorkshire Dales before finishing in Harrogate.

Because of this, the organisers of this year’s Harrogate Spring Flower Show have said they will be celebrating pedals as well as petals! A special garden, which will feature dry stone walling, cycling sculptures and spring flowering plants, will be part of this show which includes fabulous displays from over 100 leading plant nurseries.


SHAKESPEARE’S 450TH BIRTHDAY CELEBRATIONS FrIday April 25th and Saturday April 26th - Stratford on Avon

Shakespeare’s 450th birthday falls on Wednesday 23rd April but the following weekend will see the main celebrations at the town of his birth, Stratford Upon Avon.

Thousands of people from around the world are expected to visit the town to join in the mass of celebrations and activities which include processions, pageants, story telling, tours of the Shakespeare houses, sonnet readings and lots of other fun and lively activities.

More information on:

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