If you’re based in the Cotswolds, it’s something of a ritual to visit Cheltenham Racecourse for the races on New Year’s Day, no matter how bad you’re hungover. So, with a little help from some friends from Manchester, we did just that.
Starting with New Year’s Eve! We stocked up for the night ahead and spent the next few hours getting ready.
With reflections on the year that had passed, and looking ahead to everything we wanted to achieve in 2016, we chatted and laughed, with plenty of champagne cheers.
We went out to bars until the early hours, and sadly no photos – although as they say, the best bits never make the camera.
Feeling less than fresh the next morning, we prepared for the day ahead. Getting ready for the races at Cheltenham is half of the fun – with a festival known for its royal visitors, tweed, pearls, and fur, it’s important to look the part! So we did what we could with fuzzy heads.
We put on our bets and crossed our fingers for some luck that would get 2016 off to a great start…
…and patiently defied the cold wind and rain!
Sadly not many winners for us but we all had a great day. We finished it off with dinner at The Tavern, a few more drinks and a little more partying, before feeling very pleased to get into bed.
With northern visitors to show round, we headed to the beautiful village of Winchcombe, just a few miles out of Cheltenham town centre, and famous for its fabulous history and being home to Sudeley Castle, Henry VIII’s former home and the burial place of Catherine Parr, his final wife.
There are some gorgeous little pubs and eateries, and The Lion is my favourite.
We sipped coffees and chatted for hours next to the open log fire, before nibbling tapas and slices of pizza. Bliss!
Before they fell asleep, my friends packed up the car and headed back north. It’s been so lovely to have friends down to visit, and a perfect start to the year ahead.