A BRIGHT and sunny day greeted our arrival at the Black Country Living Museum.
The open air museum is a breeze to get to from Solihull, being signed from the M5.
Covering 26 acres, the site is a favourite of school trips, both my nieces aged six and eight had already been there and were bristling with enthusiasm on their return.
Ironically the school building was their priority. The building was still in use up until 1989, when, along with all the other building on the museum’s site, it was moved brick-by-brick to its present location so as to avoid demolition.
My nieces peered through classroom windows, disappointed that they had missed out by minutes on a class learning its times tables by rote. Their parents and I, also watching on, breathing a sigh of relief at the same outcome.
The first thing on my mind had been to satisfy my hunger, and to that end we joined a queue outside the new ’fried fish’ shop. We did have to wait a while, a nearby Punch and Judy show a convenient distraction for my nieces, but when we tucked into our lunch (fried in beef dripping) it was all forgotten. Delicious.
We washed it down with drinks from the Bottle and Glass Inn and began exploring the historical shops and attractions.
I was disappointed to discover the canal boats trips into the Limestone Caverns had been all booked up, it is certainly worth heading here first on arrival to ensure you book your place.
The same is true of the underground mine experience, although we did manage to dodge the sudden downpour by tagging onto the last tour. This was an unmissable highlight, a fascinating journey into a famous black country mine. My nieces both loved it, the youngest declaring she didn’t want to leave when the tour came to an end.
All in all it was an ideal family day out. It was great to get some fresh air (except for the mine) and exercise in an educational environment, and have fun at the same time.
Family tickets (two adults and up to three children) cost £34.95. The fish and chips cost a fiver and the canal trip and fairground rides are also extras. For more information see www.bclm.co.uk.