5 Rainy Day Ideas from The School House B&B

12th July 2023

We’re firm believers that there’s no such thing as bad weather, but with the recent July showers we must face the reality that the sun doesn’t always shine in Chapel Lawn. Here are some ideas of how you can get the best out of your stay at The School House B&B if the weather isn’t so good (also great ideas if it's not raining too of course!).

Browse Books and Sip Soup at Aardvark Books

Just 10 minutes’ drive from The School House is the village of Brampton Bryan, notable for its manicured hedges. Tucked away on the edge of the village and housed in 19th century granaries is one of our top guest recommendations, Aardvark Books. The bookshop is "an Aladdin’s cave of new, second-hand and rare books, CDs, maps, musical scores, DVDs, Greetings Cards and much more”.

It really isn’t just any old bookshop. Not only can you browse the books, but there’s also a café selling great tea and coffee, delicious cakes and there’s usually a delicious home-made soup on offer too. Aardvark Books also very dog-friendly and on colder days the log burner might be lit. Who knows, the sun might even be shining by the time you’ve spent a couple of hours in there.

Aardvark Books Exterior and Interior

Visit the Cathedral of the Marches – St. Laurence Church, Ludlow

St. Laurence Church in Ludlow may be an odd choice for a rainy-day destination but take a step inside this iconic Ludlow landmark and your day will be so much brighter. With an impressive collection of stained-glass windows, including England’s only known 10 Commandments window, the colours on display in St Laurence’s are quite breath-taking.

There are free guided tours available on most Saturdays between mid-April and mid-November, or you can go high-tech and download the app which takes you on an augmented reality tour around some of the church’s key features. No visit to St. Laurence’s would be complete without a look at the misericords in the chancel. And before you leave, you really must stop for a coffee at Icon Coffee and then browse the gift shop. Also very dog-friendly.

A montage of pictures of St. Laurence Church in Ludlow

National Trust Historic Houses - Berrington Hall and Attingham Park

A 40-minute drive from The School House, Berrington Hall near Leominster is a neo-classical stately home built in the 1770’s for Thomas Harley, set in 250 acres of landscaped parkland created by ‘Capability’ Brown. Berrington Hall is described as ‘Georgian grandeur on a human scale’ and it certainly is an impressive house. In December, the staff dress the box hedges to look like Christmas puddings. If the sun comes out there are plenty of walks around the grounds.

Just under an hour away is Attingham Park near Shrewsbury, another impressive mansion set in acres of parkland. Built for the first Lord Berwick in 1785, Attingham is a fine example of a great country-house estate, with its imposing entrance and lavish interiors. The mansion also houses a fascinating collection of art and antiques, showcasing the opulence of the Regency period. As with Berrington Hall, there are acres of parkland and a beautiful walled garden to walk around if the weather cheers up.

You can read more about Berrington and Attingham in our 2021 blog post ‘Four Historic Houses to Visit from The School House B&B’ here - https://www.theschoolhousebandb.co.uk/blog/historic-houses

A montage of photos from Attingham Park and Berrington Hall

Take a Virtual Flight at the Shropshire Hills Discovery Centre

The Shropshire Hills Discovery Centre in Craven Arms is just 20 minutes from us. On a rainy day you could spend a couple of hours here. Visit the ‘Shropshire Hills Through Time’ exhibition (£5 entry), which houses a replica life-sized mammoth. Well worth a watch in the rotunda cinema room is an outstanding panoramic film which takes you on a journey over the hills, towns and rivers of the surrounding landscape. Billy Postlethwaite narrates the journey where, from the height of Clee Hill to the valley of Clun, you’ll see the local landscape like you’ve never seen it before. There’s also a fabulous book and gift shop and a restaurant. If it’s not too wet there are also some great walks through Onny Meadows.

Eat, Drink or Shop at Shrewsbury Market Hall

A bit further afield than our guests usually venture, but on a rainy day the award-winning Shrewsbury Market Hall is a great place to spend a couple of hours. Whether you enjoy mooching round the stalls, drinking coffee or trying some of the excellent fare on offer there is something for everyone. About once a month the market is open into the evening, perfect for a cheeky cocktail or two.

You could of course combine Attingham Park with Shrewsbury Market Hall, stop in at Aardvark books on the way to Berrington Hall, or visit the Discovery Centre before heading to Ludlow.

And if all else fails, put on your wellies and a good raincoat and head out for a walk.

Keywords: Rainy Days, Historic Houses, Market, Ludlow, Shrewsbury