Trips Report August to October 2018

Visit To Frogmore House & Windsor – August 2018

As expected this trip was oversubscribed, however after many telephone calls, we managed to arrange a second date and so we had 2 coaches but on different days. A total of around 94 members.

I took the first coach on Saturday 11 August and Diane the second coach on Thursday 23 August.

The day started with an easy drive to Windsor – no heavy traffic on the M4. We arrived in good time and after being split into groups, we were guided through the house and gardens.  It was very interesting – a beautiful house. We were able to walk up to the mausoleum – the last resting place of Queen Victoria.  We spent the afternoon in Windsor – some to the Castle, others a river trip or just walking.  All in all a good day.

Visit to Highgrove –  September 2018

We were fortunate to have been allowed to visit Highgrove Gardens, near Tetbury, Gloucestershire, the home of HRH the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall.  It was a perfect summer  day and we wandered around the estate for 2 hours  with one of his  knowledgeable Garden Guides.

This amazing garden was little more than a neglected kitchen garden and an overgrown copse when Prince Charles  bought it from  Maurice Macmillan 35 years ago. ( Maurice was the son of  Harold Macmillan who was Prime Minister in the 1950’s and 60’s)  During the years this garden has been transformed  into a magical and inspiring place, with a surprise around every corner.  The Stumpery was my favourite place as it had been made into a tranquil corner providing rich habitat for wildlife.  We visited the thatched tree house, affectionately called Hollyrood House, the Thyme Walk  growing 20 different varieties of thyme.  The Topiary Avenue was so unexpected with the eccentric shapes clipped from yew – one couldn’t help smiling at the crazy shapes. The ethic of all this work is to grow organically without the use of pesticides or weed killers, so a lot of digging was required, so the Guide told us.

I came away from this exceptional outing feeling refreshed and inspired by the creative ideas and innovative work that has been carried out here. All the proceeds from visits like ours go to the Prince of Wales Charitable Foundation which supports charitable causes and to make  a strategic impact for good.

Visit to Winchester & Whitchurch Silk Mills – October 2018

It was raining when we left Trowbridge, fortunately it stopped by the time we arrived in Winchester.

After coffee, myself and a few others visited the Cathedral. There has been a cathedral on the site since 634 and is one of the largest in Europe. It is very impressive.   Others visited the Great Hall or just ‘shopped’ and lunched.

The afternoon was spent at the Whitchurch Silk Mill.  It is the oldest silk mill in the UK still in the original building,  The Georgian water mill, by the River Test, still weaves silk using 19th.machines. We had a very informative tour of the building, shown the machinery and the history. All ended off with a cream tea and the obligatory visit to the Mill shop.




Something Different for 2019 CANCELLED due to lack of interest

Something different for 2019

See below – details of a proposed trip to the Loire Valley in France which have been put together for us by Chandlers.

Start Date:  Monday 17 June – leave Trowbridge for the journey to Tours via Dover/Calais

Tuesday 18 June – visit to the Chateau at Amboise

Wednesday 19 June – visit Villandry Chateau & Gardens

Plus visit Chateau d’Azay-le-Rideau

Thursday 20 June – visit Château de Chambord

Friday 21 June – return home via Calais/Dover

This is a 5 day/4 night trip which includes 4 nights half board – 3 course set dinner and a cold buffet breakfast ( Fixed menu excluding drinks)

Hotel: Kyriad Tours Sud

Cost per person, sharing a twin or double room – £421.00

Single supplement. £158.00

If you are interested, please let me know ASAP – the offer is only open until Thursday 13th December.  To enable this trip to run, a minimum of 25 people are required.

Jean  email:


West Wilts U3A General Day Tours & Theatre Trips 2019

Leaders – Jean Stanford, Pauline Thewell, Diane Ramsay Arthur, Gill Laing.

Many thanks to all those who have supported our previous day trips.  We have made some amendments to the booking system which we hope will help you to book and enjoy a trouble free day out.

Tour details will be shown in the Magazine, showing the earliest date you can book/register your interest.

Please adhere to this. In the first instance please contact the relevant Trip leader to register your interest. When places are confirmed, the booking form will be sent out. You should then complete the  booking form, and return together with your cheque made payable to the West Wilts U3A, and SAE if you are not on email, to the named tour leader.  Each leader is happy to answer any questions relating to their tour, especially access concerns. Please ensure dates, pick up point and times are noted,

Comfort stops are made on journeys of more than one and a half hours and coaches normally have an ‘emergency toilet’.

The cost quoted includes the driver’s tip and all entrance fees. No meals are included unless where stated.  If a property is marked ‘NT’ please bring your valid National Trust membership card for free admission.

Pick up points:    Each tour is shown with boarding places and times. Not all pick-up points are used for every tour. Please do not change your pick up point without speaking to the tour leader directly. Failure to do so may cause delays.

Please check pick up points and times carefully.  To avoid delays we suggest arriving at the stop approximately 10 minutes before the stated pick up time.

Coaches will only stop at agreed pick-up/drop off points which change, depending on the route.  Currently main stops may include:

Westbury     Haynes Road bus stop or Chandlers depot if using Chandlers.

Trowbridge  Bus stop opposite Trinity Church alongside the park and train station.

Melksham    Kings Street Car Park

Cancellation:   If members have to cancel their booking due to unforeseen circumstances, then a refund will be made on entrance tickets if they are re-allocated or not already purchased.  Travel refunds may be given only when coach costs have been met.

No refunds if cancellation is 7 days or less prior to the date of the trip.

On the day you should carry your Membership Card which has space for your Emergency Contact details on the reverse.  It is suggested that you also carry any medication details.

Note: Data Protection: Members should not pass on the organisers details. All such details should be deleted after each trip.