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Fantastic family-friendly Easter events to enjoy in the Cotswolds

PUBLISHED: 16:30 26 March 2018 | UPDATED: 11:48 03 April 2018

GIANT duck, WWT Slimbridge

GIANT duck, WWT Slimbridge


As spring arrives on our doorsteps gilding the grass with daffodils, Easter comes with it. As usual, there’s plenty to keep the family busy in and around the Cotswolds; here is our pick of Easter events to get you out and about!

1. Easter events at the Shakespeare Family Homes, Stratford-upon-Avon

When: 12 – 4pm, Saturday March 31 – Sunday April 15

Make the most of the start of spring with a range of fun-filled activities and events for all the family at the Shakespeare Family Homes in Stratford-upon-Avon. There’s plenty of fun to be had this Easter Holiday, from crafting your very own Easter bonnet or crown, to making ornamental whirling whirligigs for the garden.

Click here to see the full list of events. All events are included in admission. Book tickets here.

Activity tent at AHC (c) The Shakespeare Birthplace TrustActivity tent at AHC (c) The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust

2. Easter Trail, Over Farm in Gloucester

When: 9am – 4pm, Thursday March 29 – Sunday April 15

Don your wellies and make your way over to Over Farm Market over the school holidays for plenty of Easter-themed family fun. The Easter trail will take you on a short walk around the farm in search of the Easter Bunny’s giant eggs. They’ll be plenty of friendly farmyard animals to spot along the way too!

The Easter trail is £3.50 per participating child.

3. Trains return to Broadway, Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway

When: The new Broadway station opens for public services from Friday March 30

Due to the dedicated work of volunteers and donations by shareholders, public train services will once again depart from Broadway train station. Book tickets from the station here – please note Easter departures are expected to be very busy.

All aboard the Easter Eggspress! On Easter Monday families can catch the train at Cheltenham Race Course, Toddington or Broadway Station for this ‘eggsellent’ event which will be taking place at Winchcombe Station. Book tickets here.

4. Giant Duck Hunt, WWT Slimbridge

When: 9.30am – 4.30pm, Friday March 30 – Sunday April 15

It’s Easter once again and it’s not just ducklings we’re looking forward to spotting at WWT Slimbridge. A gaggle of giant yellow ducks have dropped in on the centre, hidden from sight of the Slimbridge Rangers. And they need your help to find them all with your trusty pal, Dusty Duck!

Click here to see the full list of events. All events are included or admission or free to WWT members. Book tickets here.

GIANT duck at WWT SlimbridgeGIANT duck at WWT Slimbridge

5. Painswick Playgroup’s Easter Egg Hunt

When: 12pm – 4pm, Saturday March 31

More than 30 beautifully designed eggs will be hidden all around the village for you and your little ones to find, and every completed trail will be rewarded with a chocolate prize. The annual charity Painswick Easter Egg Hunt will also include attractions such as live music, bouncy castles, food and craft stalls, a visit from the Easter Bunny, plus much more.

Maps for the event are on sale from The Falcon Pub, the library or the Playgroup in Painswick, and will be £3 in advance or £4 on the day per child (under 2s are free). For more information and updates, visit the Painswick Easter Egg Hunt Facebook page.

6. Easter Weekend, Blenheim Palace

When: 10am – 5pm, Friday March 30 – Monday April 2

Follow an over-sized Easter Egg Hunt throughout the ‘Capability’ Brown Parkland and Pleasure Gardens of Blenheim Palace with some 8ft giant decorated eggs to find. Explore the grounds to seek out the special ‘Blenheim Egg’ which could put you in the running to win an Easter surprise. They’ll also be plenty of family-friendly activities and shows to enjoy throughout the weekend too.

Admission is free with a Park and Gardens ticket or a valid Annual Pass. Some activities will incur a small additional charge. Book tickets here.

7. Gloucester Races and Country Fair, Maisemore Park

When: 10am – 6pm, Saturday April 7

The event has now been cancelled due to a water-logged course.

Gloucester Races and Country Fair, Maisemore ParkGloucester Races and Country Fair, Maisemore Park

8. Easter at The Kings Head Hotel, Cirencester

When: Sunday April 1

The Kings Head Hotel invites families to enjoy a three-course Sunday lunch or Easter-themed afternoon tea on Easter Sunday. During the afternoon, resident magician Alex will be performing up close magic displays between 12.30pm and 4pm. The three-course Sunday lunch includes leek and potato soup, press ham hock and soft-shelled crab, followed by delicious roasts of striploin of beef and leg of spring lamb or poached haddock. There’s sure to be a delectable dessert to suit every taste with trio of chocolate, rhubarb crumble and selection of cheeses to bring the meal to a tasty end.

Bookings are essential - to make a reservation, call 01285 700900.

Resident magician Alex will be performing up close magic displays at The Kings Head Hotel on Easter SundayResident magician Alex will be performing up close magic displays at The Kings Head Hotel on Easter Sunday

9. Easter at Sudeley Castle

When: Easter Sunday Joust (Sunday April 1) and Easter Children’s Wednesday (April 4 and 11)

The Easter Sunday Joust will return to the stunning Sudeley Castle, and audiences (and King Henry VIII and the ladies of his court) can once again admire a display of heroic action from the Cavalry of Heroes. A falconry display will entertain crowds before the jousting begins.

On the Easter Children’s Wednesday expect an Easter trail around the castle and grounds as well as an Animal Encounter Trail for little ones to get up close and personal to an array of animals from snakes to meerkats. For both events, book tickets here.

10. Secret Book Garden and Orchard Street Food & Craft Market, Gloucester Quays

When: The Secret Book Garden will take place on Friday March 30 – Sunday April 15 and the Orchard Street Food & Craft Market Friday March 30 – Monday April 2

Families are being invited to Gloucester Quays to enjoy a free ‘Secret Book Garden’ literacy inspired event over the Easter school holidays. Encouraging children to have fun with words, the event will include three giant hat Tipi housing ‘Learn to Love Literacy’ workshops, Tales from the Tipi, Crafty Corner and more.

The renowned Orchard Street Food and Craft Market will also return for a four-day extended Bank Holiday special. This is the first event of 2018 following a cancellation due to snow at the beginning of March. Visitors can enjoy great food and drink while soaking up the atmosphere of market day and meeting the friendly producers.

For more information on both events, visit the Gloucester Quays website.

Secret Book Garden at Gloucester QuaysSecret Book Garden at Gloucester Quays

11. Spring Festival, Cotswold Farm Park

When: Friday March 30 – Sunday April 15

Skip and jump into the spirit of spring with a special ‘hopstacle’ course and a treasure hunt around Cotswold Farm Park with a prize for every child to win. There’ll also be craft activities, a puppet show to entertain the little ones, as well as all of the usual fun expected at the Farm Park. Don’t miss a visit to the Animal Barn – with new arrivals due every day.

Activities are included in the cost of admission. Book tickets here.

12. Easter fun at the British Motor Museum, Gaydon

When: 10am – 5pm, Friday March 30 – Sunday April 15

Explore the world’s largest collection of historic British cars – from the very first Land Rover to Lady Penelope’s FAB1. Experience the sights, sounds and stories of the British motor industry brought to life with costumed explainers and free guided tours.

There’s plenty for the whole family to enjoy over the Easter Weekend, as well as AutoScience Easter Holiday activities. Book tickets here.

Have we missed an Easter event you’ll be heading along to? Let us know on Facebook and Twitter!

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