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What better way to keep your guests entertained during the day than with garden games. Hopefully this post will save you some precious planning time with some ideas! If you’re not up for some diy construction, most garden games can be sourced locally from hire companies, but also look for local ‘play associations’ who often hire them out at a low cost. For brides local to MK, check out https://www.mkpa.co.uk/resources/equipment-hire/ where you can hire giant Ten Pin Bowling and Giant Jenga for £10 each.
Carnival games are great fun for all ages at a wedding, bringing everyone together for some lighthearted competition. Some ideas:
- Ring Toss
- High striker
- Pop a Balloon
- Spin the Wheel
- Blow up basketball
- Hook a Duck
Everyone loves giant versions of their beloved game classics. Here are some Gaint Wedding Game ideas:
- Giant Jenga
- Giant Connect 4
- Giant Checkers
- Giant Dominoes
- Giant inflatable bowling
Lawn games are an old favourite for weddings. Some ideas could include:
- Welly Wanging
- Swing Ball
- Treasure Hunt
- Lawn Croquet
To accompany games at your Wedding why not have an activities station! Full of family and adult activities:
- Dress up Photo Booth
- Colouring in
- Hat making
- Board Game station
- Video game station
Spin the Wheel- https://www.pinterest.co.uk/pin/91901648627146789/?lp=true
Blow up Basketball- https://www.skyhighpartyrentals.com/basketball-sports-game
Giant Connect 4- https://www.weddingideasmag.com/styling-barn-venue-wedding-day/
Board Game Station- https://www.happyshappy.com/dream/5057279084222655
Typically most wedding days aren’t the most eco friendly event with a huge amount of food waste, thrown away décor, a carbon footprint from guest travel, plastic packaging use and a dress worn just the once. Having a green wedding doesn’t mean you have to wed in a barn or only invite 10 guests, it just means taking a moment to source sustainable and eco-friendly items, often saving you a bit of money and giving your guests some food for thought. Whether you want a green Wedding from start to finish or just some eco-friendly elements, hopefully these tips should give some inspiration.
Your venue choice is possibly the biggest decision a bride and groom can make and incorporating eco-friendly to your criteria can be hard. Choose a local venue – by doing this you’re reducing the carbon footprint of the couple, suppliers and guests travel. If local isn’t for you then try a sustainable venue: barns and farms are considered a typical option for an eco-wedding, but manors and castles, which have all the facilities of a wedding waiting for you, are also an option. Having a good sit down with your venue to find out their best practices with regards food, wines and suppliers, will help you decide if they share your greener vision.
DIY favours are very popular at the moment. Some popular ideas are baked goods, making your own jam (gifted in reused jars), handmade soap and bags of confetti made from dried petals. To inspire those green fingers at your wedding why not consider small potted plants that can double-up as place stings or have wildflower seeds as wedding favours which can be bought in bulk or purchased from charities such as the RSPB. This not only saves money but also helps the environment, saving the bees and aids a charity! It’s a win win! There are so many DIY green Wedding favour ideas, all you need is a little imagination.
When it comes to outfits, taking the greener route can shave a large portion off the more traditional larger budget item. Hiring suits and sourcing a vintage/secondhand dress will save you sometimes thousands and is a big benefit to the environment. There are so many vintage stores that sell designer dresses at great prices. Oxfam have 12 dedicated bridal shops across the country which are worth a visit. If vintage isn’t for you then purchasing a dress from an ethical designer can be another eco element to the special day.
Here are some recommended vintage wedding dress websites-
Cutting back on paper consumption for your wedding would make a huge difference! Here at Cute Maps we offer a Save The Date Email, this saves paper going out to all your guests and still has that wedding flair. Cutting back on paper and wastage is just a general rule of thumb to save you money, time and the environment!
Go Vegetarian! It is increasingly popular in our western society to go vegetarian or vegan so why not please those guests and educate others on the delicious delights of those lifestyles. It can saves you a lot of money sparing your caterer expensive meat purchases and beef is one of the biggest contributors to climate change so even choosing an alternative meat ca make a difference. Furthermore, avoid disposable dinnerware and organic and vegan bakeries are forever increasing their wedding cake offers.
A great way to save on transport is stick to a single venue if going for a civil ceremony or to select venues within close proximity and walk! Walking from your Vows to your reception is a great way to mingle and chat with the guests and can really make the whole day! Another way to save on burning fuel is to book a coach for transport for your guests, a double decker bus can be done up with your own special twist.
There are so many ways you can have a green Wedding day, whether it’s start to finish green or just a couple of these elements to help reduce, reuse and recycle!
The Venue/picture 1 – https://www.theconsciousbride.co.uk/blog/kate-and-tim-eco-friendly-wedding
The Venue/ picture 2- https://thecluedupbride.co.uk/environmentally-eco-friendly-festival-wedding-inspiration/
Favours/ picture 1- https://www.pinterest.es/pin/302163456233229366/?lp=true
Favours/ picture 3- https://www.pinterest.co.uk/pin/682717624735791707/?lp=true
Outfits/ picture 2- https://fashionetter.com/2017/09/09/68-vintage-wedding-dress-inspired/
Outfits/ picture 3- https://www.rockmywedding.co.uk/autumnal-styling-for-grooms/
Transport/ picture 1- https://www.yorkpullmanbus.co.uk/weddings
Transport/ picture 2- http://www.centreforstewardship.org.uk/wedding-walk/
Transport/ picture 3- https://www.pinterest.co.uk/pin/189854940514384872/?lp=true
A castle wedding isn’t just for those wanna be princess’, but some may believe it’s living the fairytale! Whether you fancy a grand banqueting hall, stunning gardens, towering turrets or a four poster bed luckily we have an abundance of choice of castles in all regions of the UK to suit your every whim. If you aren’t already convinced, check out these stunning castle venues that might change your mind.
Thornbury Castle, Thornbury, South Gloucestershire, England This venue is perfect for any traditional wedding with its medieval architecture, stunning Tudor Hall and award-winning food. Tie the knot beside battlements in their perfectly manicured gardens or inside in their beautiful Tudor hall.
Thornbury Castle holds up to 50 guests (120 in marquee) and sleeps up to 50 guests in 28 rooms.
Belle Isle Castle, Co.Fermanagh, Ireland This Castle wedding venue is located on its own enchanted private island. Having a wedding here would be a dream come true, completely secluded from society to just enjoy your special day with those you love. Belle Isle Castle caters for up to 65 guests (200 in marquee) and sleeps 26 guests in 13 rooms.
Whitstable Castle, Whitstable, England A wedding at Whitstable Castle means exclusive use of the castle which is set in stunning landscaped grounds just 200m from Tankerton beach and historic Whitstable harbour. Whitstable Castle caters for up to 52 guests (120 in marquees or sun terrace)
Melville Castle, Edinburgh, Scotland Melville Castle is located 7 miles outside of the stunning city of Edinburgh and secluded in a 50 acre estate. Complete with a grand façade and cute turrets, Melville is a popular choice. Most entertaining involves their beautiful state rooms and elegant ballroom. Melville Castle caters for up to 110 guests (250 in a marquee) and sleeps up to 72 guests in 33 rooms.
Craig-y-Nos Castle, Brecon Road, Swansea, Wales Craig-y-Nos Castle is nestled in the heart of the exquisite countryside of the Welsh Brecon Beacons. Once home to a famous opera singer in the 19th Century, her stamp can be seen in the opulent décor. The conservatory also offers a beautiful setting for the big day. Craig-y-nos caters for up to 50 guests (higher capacity at night)
Thornbury castle couple- https://www.thornburycastle.co.uk/wedding-venue-gloucestershire
Thornbury Castle- https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/thornbury-castle-honeymoon-spot-henry-viii-and-anne-boleyn-sale-103-million-180962523/
Belle Isle Caste- https://www.celticcastles.com/castle-blog/weddings-at-belle-isle-castle-2016/
Belle Isle Castle couple- https://belle-isle.com/
Whitstable Castle- http://www.whitstablecastle.co.uk/castle-wedding-package
Whitstable Castle couple- http://whitstablecastle.co.uk/gallery
Mellville Castle couple- https://melvillecastle.com/
Mellville Castle- https://www.booking.com/hotel/gb/melville-castle.en-gb.html
Craig-y-nos castle- https://www.hitched.co.uk/wedding-venues/craig-y-nos-castle-hotel_3262.htm
Craig-y-nos castle couple- https://www.craigynoscastleweddings.com/
What is more romantic than a wedding with a stunning coastal backdrop; and what’s more satisfying than a beach wedding without the expense of a wedding abroad. No matter where you are in the UK your dream coastal wedding venue could be closer than you think.
Newton Hall- Newton-by-the-Sea, Northumberland
This venue caters for receptions on the beach, food in the sand dunes and you can even wed on the stunning Northumberland shoreline. Newton Hall also offers other outside options including atop a hill, on a terrace a stunning and a a rustic and equally impressive garden suite as an inside setting.
Newton Hall has a capacity of 150 ceremony guests and 250 for evening celebrations.
For more information visit their website- https://newton-hall.com/weddings/
Harvest Moon- Tyninghame, East Lothian, Scotland
Harvest moon is an adorable beach wedding venue nestled behind the dunes of the sweeping East Lothian coastline and offers a truly unique beach wedding experience together with guest accommodation in their several treehouses and glamping tents. If getting sand in your toes isn’t for you their treehouse venue allows for the perfect coastal backdrop instead.
Harvest moon can cater for weddings from 50 – 200+
For more information visit their website- http://www.harvestmoonweddings.co.uk/
Sandbanks Hotel- Poole, Dorset
Sandbank Hotel offers an amazing circular Compass Suite or alfresco terrace for your wedding celebration overlooking the golden sands of Dorset’s coastline. Guests can also enjoy authentic Asian cuisine cooked on-site in a dedicated Chinese kitchen.
The compass suit accommodates for 100 guests during the day and 150 in the evening.
For more information visit their website- https://www.fjbhotels.co.uk/sandbanks-hotel/weddings/
Tunnels Beaches, Ilfracombe, Devon
Tunnels Beaches is hidden away on its own private cove in the Devonshire cliffs. Completely secluded from the public this venue gives any wedding that touch of privacy. Couples can choose from a beautiful roof terrace, a contemporary function room or a gazebo overlooking the shores of the private beach.
Tunnels beaches can cater for 88 people in the day and 130 in the evening.
For more information visit their website- http://www.tunnelsbeaches.co.uk/weddings.html
East Quay, Whitstable
This stunning location offers a stunning beach wedding venue full of character located at the end of East Quays harbour, overlooking the pebbly beach. Couples can choose from a mezzanine function room with sea views that caters for 100 guests or a downstairs licensed ceremony area with a dance floor for up to 70 guests. The openness of the venue allows for guests and the happy couple to wander from the venue onto the beach with ease.
For more information visit their website- https://www.eqvenue.com/venue/weddings/
Sandbanks Hotel- https://www.coastmagazine.co.uk/content/top-12-weddings-sea
East Quay- https://www.eqvenue.com/gallery/
We’ve designed several Cute Maps for marquee weddings over the years. This week we’re busting any pre-conceptions and showing you the beauty and endless possibilities, they offer.
Style of marquee
1. Traditional The traditional style marquee is suitable to many wedding styles. The canvas sides and king poles not only help the shape and stability but also give it that distinctive classic feel. The poles, floors and versatile ceiling spaces give you a great canvas to build a stunning environment to fit your style. Canvas, bunting, pom poms, balloons, lanterns, fairy lights, branches & foliage can all be used in impressing inventive ways to create magical results.
2. Pagoda/Canopy These are great if you’re having a destination wedding with reliable weather. For a UK wedding, these are more of a practical but pretty feature than a venue, but as they stand alone without the need for poles they can be placed in almost any location and can be used for chill out lounges, kids areas, bandstands, bars or for the catering.
3. Yurt A vintage or bohemian theme wedding is perfectly placed in a yurt. Its traditional circle shape can be useful for all types of wedding needs from the ceremony area to the main reception, you’re only limited by your own imagination! The trellis walls and ceilings give you a great backdrop to dress and in themselves give a really rustic and authentic atmosphere.
4. Stretch/Capri This style of marquee is a statement piece, suited to contemporary airy summer weddings, but beware the UK weather! Additionally, you are again limited to erecting these in a grassy area but if you’re brave and have the appetite for a fully outdoor day these are a stunning element to your day.
5. Tipi The tipi has taken weddings by storm over the past 5 years. Bohemian, rustic and popular due to its festival feel. As they’re normally modular large or small gatherings are nicely accommodated and they’re also great for all weather types, so there is no need to worry about the changeable UK climate.
Here are some top companies in the U.K to hire wedding/event marquees: https://www.burgoynes-marquees.co.uk/
Alternatively, you can buy your own second hand from places like eBay which may work out cheaper than a hire for traditional and canopy styles depending on the size and material. Shop around the hire sites, local companies and second hand options before making a decision, to ensure you’re getting the one that ticks all your boxes at the fairest price.
Things to consider are access for guests and suppliers, toilet facilities for your guests, running water for guests and catering. Is there access to power or do you need a generator? Is there parking for your guests? These are just a few things to consider before you commit. Fortunately many venues that offer marquees as an option in their grounds have thought of these already, but its always worth asking these questions and if any other practical elements may yield hidden costs. A wedding planner can help take a lot of the stress away from the couple when it comes to planning a marquee wedding. They are often held on private land or at a cross purpose venue such as gardens, farmland or grass etc. If you’re looking for this type of venue local to us at Cute Maps in Bucks or South Northants check out our previous blog story which includes venues Flaxbourne gardens, Stoke Park Pavilions and Crockwell farm.
Collage 1, pic 1- http://www.thewildebunch.co.uk/venue-gallery/marquees/
Collage 1, pic 2- http://thesecretgardenatduffrynmawr.co.uk/
Collage 1, pic 3- https://memphite.com/eXVydCB0ZW50cyB1aw/
Collage 3, pic 1- https://thetipicompany.com/tag/tipi-hire
Collage 3, pic 2- http://www.reallygoodmarquees.co.uk/2017/02/28/marquee-hire-top-10-tips/
For this post we’d thought we’d give a helping hand to Brides and Grooms local to us searching for their ideal wedding venue. Milton Keynes & Northampton are strewn with beautiful green pockets and quaint villages so there are many beautiful locations and areas to explore. A good rule of thumb when planning your wedding is to expect to spend 45% of your budget on your venue including food, drink and incidentals like decoration, linen, chairs, corkage etc. Here we’ve detailed some great organised wedding venues, but if you’re up for the ‘dry-hire’ challenge and really want to get some bang-for-your-buck and the freedom to plan every aspect your way, there are some wonderful village halls and community centres that you can hire for your special day. www.hallshire.com/ is a great place to start hunting.
All price ranges below are a guide and are dependent on time of the year and day of the week.
Top value venues
(picture clockwise from top left: The Walnut Tree Inn, The Saracen’s Head Hotel, The Sofitel Woughton House Hotel, Hilton MK Stadium)
The Walnut Tree Inn
Set in the idyllic village of Blisworth, this quaint ex station-house inn is a cute foodie-loving venue. It is only a short walk from the Grand Union Canal so is perfect for those picturesque photo shoots!
Capacity: 60 ceremony, up to 120 reception
Hire: from £650 for ceremony & reception
21 Station Rd, Blisworth, Northampton NN7 3DS
The Saracens Head Hotel
Nestled in the the historic town of Towcester, this venue dates back over 400 years and even features in Charles Dickens’ first novel, The Pickwick Papers. Perfect place for a country inn wedding.
Capacity: up to 75
Venue hire from £200
219 Watling St, Towcester NN12 6BX
Sofitel Woughton House Hotel
A beautiful country house set in the ancient village of Woughton on the Green inside the Milton Keynes grid, surrounded by the beautiful Ouzel Valley. You wouldn’t even know you were in the city.
Capacity: up to 160
Hire: £250 – £850
Newport Rd, Woughton on the Green, Milton Keynes MK6 3LR
The Hilton, Milton Keynes Stadium
This stunning indoor venue can cater for a lavish party or a small gathering. Perfect for urbanites who’d like a contemporary feel to their day or sports fans who can’t get enough of that stadium atmosphere as most function rooms overlook the pitch.
Fee for ceremony applies. From £40 per head for evening reception. If you are only having your reception here then a room hire charge applies.
Stadium Way, Bletchley, Milton Keynes MK1 1ST
Mid price range venues
(picture left to right The Barns at Hunsbury Hill, Silverstone Golf Club & Hotel)
The Barns at Hunsbury Hill
This 18th century barn comes complete with farm buildings, courtyard and landscaped lawns, oozing country charm and rustic elegance.
Capacity: 40 – 180
Hire fee: £1395 – 2495
Harksome Hill, Northampton NN4 9QX
Silverstone Golf Club & Hotel
This beautiful location, surrounded by forest and countryside also offers very quaint and colourful private cottage accommodation for wedding guests.
Capacity: up to 160
Hire fee: £800 – £1500
Silverstone Road, Buckingham MK18 5LH
(picture left to right The Safari Lodge, Dodmoor House)
The Safari Lodge at Woburn Safari Park
This is the perfect venue for animal and nature lovers! Set in Woburn Safari Park it is also the perfect location for something unusual and quirky.
Hire fee: £1950 – £2150
Woburn Park, Milton Keynes MK17 9QN
This dedicated rural Northamptonshire wedding venue offers 2 barns, 4 acres of grounds a licensed bar and a courtyard garden.
Packages: £2,750 – £7,250 including overnight stay for the newlyweds, dining equipment, toy box and tv for children, lighting decoration and no corkage charge for the daytime.
Dodmoor House, Weedon Lane, Northampton NN7 4TA
(picture left to right Furtho Manor Farm, Plum Park)
Furtho Manor Farm
This popular dry hire wedding venue just above Milton Keynes is situated in a stunning countryside location with a beautiful waterside ceremony option and contemporary rustic barns.
Capacity: up to 150
Hire: £2,000 – £4000
Northampton Rd, Milton Keynes MK19 6NR
Plum Park Hotel
This restored Victorian Manor House has a beautiful courtyard, gardens, terraces and a picturesque outdoor space.
Packages from £2,499 – £5,799 including the use of marquee, terraces and gardens, one drink per guest, dining equipment, stage and dance floor, cash bar, use of a bridal dressing room, overnight accommodation and breakfast for the newly-weds.
Plum Park, Watling St, Towcester NN12 6LG
Generous budget venues
(picture left to right Chicheley Hall, Flaxbourne Gardens)
If you’re looking for the tree-lined driveway leading to an impressive stately façade then Chicheley Hall will tick your boxes. This beautiful 18th century Hall is set in 80 acres of kept grounds and is one of the most popular venues in Milton Keynes.
Capacity: Indoors 100 Ceremony, 150 reception. Marquee for up to 600
Packages including food and drink: from £6,999+ (for 60)
Chicheley Rd, Newport Pagnell MK16 9JJ
This unique venue in Aspley Guise offers a blank canvas for every bride and grooms dream wedding. You can choose from marquees in the gardens, arches amongst the flowers, candles in the waterfall grotto and much more.
Capacity: 40 – 200+
Packages from £3,590 (for 40) to £6350+ (for 100) including food and table drink, marquee, dining equipment, dance floor, outdoor furniture, facilities, cash & card bar, children’s treehouse, helicopter arrival area.
Salford Rd, Aspley Guise, Milton Keynes MK17 8HZ
(picture left to right: Holdenby House, The Sculpture Gallery at Woburn Abbey)
This 20-acre private estate dates back to the Elizabethan era and emanates old-school, aristocratic luxury. Their grand state rooms all overlook the stunning gardens which offer the perfect dreamy backdrop to your big day.
Capacity: up to 110
Holdenby House ,Northampton, NN6 8DJ
The Sculpture Gallery at Woburn Abbey
Truly a statement venue, the Sculpture Gallery set in the grand Wobrun Abbey estate offers a stunning palatial backdrop to your wedding day and even has its own private rose gardens overlooking a small lake.
Capacity: up to 250
Packages including food and drink from £145 – £188 per person
Woburn Abbey, MK17 9WA
(picture left to right: Stoke Park Pavillions, Brampton Grange)
Stoke Park Pavilions
This 1630 Italian Palladian style park is set amid handsome grass and woodlands of Northamptonshire.
Hire: £3,590 – £3,850
Stoke Park House, Stoke Bruerne, Towcester NN12 7RZ
This historic venue set in 25 acres of private estate offers 3 character barns for ceremonies and receptions.
Capacity: up to 260
Hire: £2,750 – £7,250
Sandy Ln, Chapel Brampton, Northampton NN6 8AD
Photo credits- left to right:
- Have a long engagement. Take as much time as necessary to save money for the magical day. Additionally, some suppliers allow you to book your wedding venue years in advance which can help save a lot.
- Have a weekday wedding. Tying the knot on a week day is much cheaper than at the weekend, sometimes saving you thousands of pounds.
- Get married at home. Now the government has lifting the rules on where you can legally marry this is something to consider if you have the space. This liberates all the decisions often imposed on you by venues such as food and booze spending as well as closing time!
- Get married very local… If you’d like a wedding day with a long guest list on a budget, sticking local is the best idea as you’ll be able to easily find all the village halls, community centres, small hotels and less advertised venues that are affordable diamonds-in-the-dust. If you’re time-poor we’d still recommend an appointed wedding venue (such as a hotel) as you’ll end up very stressed out trying to compensate for the job their events department will do.
- …or get married very far away! When you’re on a budget the guest list is the most stressful part of the wedding planning and the more weddings you go to, the more you notice the grumpy few who are just there out of obligation – why should you spend on average £150/head on these people?! Marrying abroad often solves your guest list problem in one swoop as those that come are those that really want to be there for your special day and a perfect excuse to keep it more intimate in numbers. You’ll also find in many countries your pennies go further, so double-savings are to be made.
- Only have the essentials. Make a list of the essentials and the optional things for the wedding. DO NOT attempt to plan any wedding without an ongoing budget list and yes log every receipt. Many brides start with one then ignore it as they go along as it stresses them out, but the reality is if you can manage this well you’ll feel far more satisfied in the long run!
- Buy a budget wedding dress. The high street and vintage stores have some hidden gems that can be perfect for any fashion type. More and more high street stores are offering a wider and more beautiful range of budget wedding dresses and for some brands the quality isn’t much compromised. Vintage or second-hand wedding dresses can be half the price and can look just as new. If you’re buying sizes up or down always get a quote from a seamstress sending them photos before money changes hands, as you don’t want to be stung with a huge dressmaking bill after you’ve made a good saving.
- Save money on alcohol. A ‘dry hire’ is stressful and rewarding in equal measures but savings on food and drink are the big draw. Its rare to find all-inclusive venues without corkage fees nowadays but they are out there and if you’re fortunate to find one you can make savings of hundreds, sometimes thousands of pounds on your booze. Ask your serving staff to mention ‘saving some drink for the toast’ and you’ll save hundreds on champagne for the toast after the food. If you’re having speeches before food, ask the waiting staff to do the same during your champagne reception and canapes.
- Skip the photographer! A brave move, but surprisingly becoming a trend. With the modern day, most people have smart phones who can take some snaps for you on your special day and there are always a few guests if asked to bring their SLRs will get very excited. Setting up a photo station also ensures you’ll get a lot of snaps to look back on.
- Make the most of your talented friends. Guests often love to get involved and so asking them to be part of your planning can save pennies and shed some tears of joy. Rule of thumb is if its their profession/main income don’t ask for freebies (instead keep your fingers crossed for an offer!) but if its their hobby then ask away. However your friends can help it will save you more money than you realise, be it playing an instrument, singing, taking pictures, making crafts and decorations or baking your wedding cake.
- DIY! Being creative and making your own wedding essentials can save you money immensely. You cant do everything yourself but pick things you’re good at and make some time to incorporate it into the wedding planning. DIY wedding ideas are plentiful – browse YouTube, Pinterest, blogs and Instagram where you’ll find tutorials on how to do almost anything wedding related. Depending on what you can create, you can sell on your creations after the big day, making some money back and a possible contribution towards the honeyfund.
- Don’t let traditions and superstitions you don’t care about cost you money. Traditional weddings can be the most expensive because that is where the demand is. If you scrap the things you secretly don’t care about or do things differently it can be a big cost saving: If you don’t like cake, don’t have cake – no one will notice until the bus journey home! If you don’t like starters, scrap them from the menu, wear whatever outfit you like and if you want to get ready with your betrothed and cab it to the venue that morning so be it!
Being a mother is one of the hardest yet most rewarding jobs in the world, so it’s fitting that we honour them with one day a year of love and reflect on everything they have done for us. They have no pay and little time off from being your parent and will be a figure in your life forever near or far, little or often. Mothers deserve more than one day of our attention and love; however, this special day is to remind them of how important and special our mothers are to us.
We all have different ways of celebrating Mother’s Day all over the world and in different cultures, but for the most of us, it probably is all about complimenting these amazing women.
Spend the day with them! The best gift to give a mother is the recognition of how much she has done for us and how much we love them. Take as much time out of our days to spend with our mothers to just remind them of how loved they really are. It doesn’t have to cost a single penny just to spend time with our mothers; maybe take a walk together or just have a good catch up. However, spoiling our mothers can also be just as loving, treating them to a homemade meal or going out to the pub together is still a cost-effective way to spend time together.
If you have a bit more money to spend, then we’ve thought of an itinerary for your Mother’s Day! Maybe start with brunch in her favourite restaurant, then head to the spa to get pampered which all mothers love and deserve! This gives time to catch-up and some well-deserved time to relax and unwind. If you’ve still the energy, end the day with a meal out together or cook a homemade meal together. A BBQ can be a great way to bring all the family together in the evening to treat your mother with some family fun. A day like this could be what every mother dreams of and can be just what she needs to remind her of how important and crucial her life long job has been.
Another way of showing these amazing women how important they are to us is to spoil them with gifts. Flowers, funny mugs, alcohol, candles and chocolate are all classic gifts that will put a smile on her face and will be much appreciated. Maybe this year go out your comfort zone and look for gifts that will last and are a bit different to the norm. Here at Cute Maps we can design a map or pathway of you and your mothers journey together. The Cute Path mounted print could be the perfect personalised illustration of either your mothers’ journey through life or the journey that both of you shared together. https://www.cutemaps.co.uk/product/cute-path/ The Cute Gift Map mounted print can be personalised to anything of your choosing and can be as weird and wonderful as you like. https://www.cutemaps.co.uk/product/cute-gift-map/
Altenatively, a piece of jewellery to remind her of you every time she wears it could be a good gift this Mother’s Day. There are a plethora of inventive gift companies offering beautiful Mother’s Day personalised gifts ,that can embody the story between you and your mother or family:
Not on the high street- https://www.notonthehighstreet.com/mothers-day/best-mothers-day-gifts
Getting personal.co.uk- https://www.gettingpersonal.co.uk/mothers-day-gifts/personalised-mothers-day-gifts.htm
Funky Pigeon- https://www.funkypigeon.com/gifts/mothers-day
Now that the sun is shining and spring is on its way, it’s the perfect time to explore some local walks and, being based at MK Arts Centre in the beautiful grounds of Linford Manor, we thought we’d share some local walks in the Milton Keynes area. Milton Keynes is known for being a melting pot of urban and rural landscapes. As a result it has many green open spaces that flow with the original footprint the ‘city’ was built upon enveloping and preserving over 14 villages inside the grid road network. Some popular walking areas are Willen Lake, Ouzel Valley Park, Campbell Park and Caldecotte Lake, but there are always beautiful meadows, parks and little village pockets to be found.
The Parks Trust website lists many local walks in and around Milton Keynes including a 25 mile challenge, guided walks, self-guided walks, discovery strolls, woof walks, health walks and information on the women’s walking network: https://www.theparkstrust.com/activities/walking/. Whether you’re walking for fun, fitness or just taking the dog for a stroll, there is plenty of truly beautiful places to explore. Ignore the old 1980s reputation Milton Keynes was labelled – get off the grid and look at what’s inside it – it’s beautiful!
Here at Cute Maps we have fortunately designed quite a few walk maps with many local businesses, organisations, charities, parishes and MK Council. ‘A dog walkers guide to Milton Keynes’ compiled by Debbie Greaves and Rob Angell has 14 different dog walks that Cute Maps designed. One of our favourites is Dog Walk 2 that meanders around Loughton and Great Holm. Highlights on this walk are lakeside views, ancient hamlets, the 13th century All Saints Church, one ancient village green and one new village green. Another favourite walk of ours is Dog Walk 8, which takes you through the ancient villages of Woolstone, Woughton and a portion of the scenic Ouzel Valley Park which runs the length of the city. This is an hour and a half walk taking in pubs, riverside and canal towpath sections, historic landmarks, children’s play parks and a village green. All walks in this book have nuggets of useful information that’s perfect for every dog walker, such as dog-friendly pubs, poo bins, parking & grazing areas and the length of road walking. The book can be purchased here: https://www.etsy.com/uk/listing/550547534/a-dog-walkers-guide-to-milton-keynes
Another walk we designed was for dance group MOTUS’ event Pedalling the Tracks https://www.motusdance.co.uk/about. Although designed for cycling, walkers were also encouraged to the event and it makes a great walk suitable for all types of walkers, predominantly along the old train track the ‘Newport Nobby’ which ran from Newport Pagnell to Wolverton and includes the preserved train station platforms complete with retro station signs. Featuring the Cute Maps studio building, which was formerly an old gatehouse to Linford Manor in Great Linford, we really recommend this pretty walk to locals and visitors.
Recently Cute Maps also designed the ‘Wolverton Town Trails’ boards, whose walks can be found on the app of the same name in the Apple App Store, Google Play store and on Milton Keynes Councils’ website. There are four trails – here’s a peek of the ‘Walk in Railwaymen’s Footsteps’ walk. Look out for the boards in Wolverton planned to be erected later this year!
First Picture- from left to right, top to bottom.
Great Linford Manor- https://discovermiltonkeynes.wordpress.com/2015/07/28/great-linford-manor/
Ouzel Valley Park- https://www.theparkstrust.com/parks/ouzel-valley-park
River Crossing- http://www.mkramblers.org.uk/
Peace Pagoda- Instagram @errazti_93