Family

3 ways to celebrate Mother's Day

With Mother’s Day fast approaching, March 26th, 2017 to be exact,  the team at Hatchbag have come together to round up the best activities to enjoy with your mother. With the flowers starting to blossom and the glimmer of sunshine on the horizon, why not celebrate your mother AND Mother Nature? Here are 3 ways to spend Mother’s Day outside in 2017.

SIGHTSEEING

Castles – Bolsover Castle, Derbyshire

What better way to spend Mother’s Day than by learning about our British history and one of our famous castles such as Bolsover Castle in Derbyshire, England.

Derbyshire in itself is known for its beautiful scenic landscapes and expansive greenery that is sure to take anyone who visits breath away. As you make your way down the spectacular drive to Bolsover Castle, you’ll realise that the fairy tale Stuart mansion that is Bolsover Castle has been designed to entertain and impress.

With plenty of activities to keep all entertained, make your life easier by planning your day here: http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/bolsover-castle/

We have chosen Bolsover Castle in Derbyshire as part of our roundup, however, why not take a look at the Top 10 English Heritage castles here. View the website here.

EXPERIENCE NATURE

Kew Gardens – Richmond, Surrey

There’s no better way to enjoy Mother Nature than with your own mother, surrounded by beautiful plants and flowers. One of our favourite places to visit in the UK is Kew Gardens in Surrey.

Discover the secret life of bees at The Hive, or, absorb the artworks ranging from Henry Moore to Marianne North. If art isn’t your thing then you can simply take in the fresh air, the beautiful gardens and the sweet scent of the flowers which adorn most paths around the grounds.

Should you not live near the area, check out this handy guide to find a garden near you: The English Garden.

GO FOR A WALK

Ty Coch – Mofra, Wales

 Why not visit one of Wales’s most famous pubs Ty Coch; which is also a National Trust listed building – and enjoy the tranquillity of there being no cars in sight before tucking into a lovely Sunday lunch?

Park your car in the Molfra car park and take a beautiful coastal walk along the seafront, taking in the sights and sounds of one of Wales’s most adored gems before finding Ty Coch where you can tuck into your favourite Sunday carvery.

Helvellyn – Lake District

If you’re looking for a bit more adventure this Mother’s Day then why not pack up the hiking boots and take to the wild with the best woman in your life in hand?

Helvellyn in the Lake District - although not the highest peak in the Lake District - can still stake a claim as the most beautiful. Loved by the likes of Wordsworth, Wainwright and generations of walkers, you’ll have a lovely day walking along the flat summit on a hopefully warm Spring day. What better way to spend Mother’s Day?

Whatever you do this Mother’s Day, we’d love to see what you get up to. Send us your snaps to @HatchbagCompany on Twitter, @thehatchbagcompany on Instagram & The Hatchbag Company on Facebook.

Happy Mother’s Day to all the lovely Mum’s out there.

Scotland Named as the UK's Favourite Staycation

This year many families will be deciding whether to jet off in search of some summer sun or to opt for the ever increasingly popular UK staycation. Thus, Hatchbag asked 1000 people all about their summer plans for 2017.

Staycation vs Holiday Abroad

Staycation

In total 46% of the respondents stated that they plan to stay in the UK this summer, opting to explore what Great Britain has to offer. In comparison, 54% revealed that they would still be seeking their dose of summer sun abroad this year.

Popular Destinations

So, with 46% of you choosing to stay in the UK this year, we wanted to know which areas of the UK are most likely to benefit from staycations.

Hatchbag

Interestingly, the most popular area is Scotland, which received 25% of the vote from the 1000 people we asked. Charmed by culturally steeped cities such as Edinburgh, stretches of stunning sands in The Outer Hebrides and the breath-taking beauty of the rugged Cairngorms, it is no great surprise that Scotland has come out on top.

But, Scotland is not the only one set to profit from domestic tourism with the South West of England and Wales closely following in second and third position.

With the South West of England playing host to popular coastal resorts such as Torquay and Cornwall, it’s perhaps unsurprising that 21.4% chose it as a preferable location. After all, Cornwall experiences the highest temperatures in the UK over the summer months.

Wales offers an eclectic mix of places to visit. From the medieval city of Tenby to the striking scenery of Snowdonia National Park and picturesque towns and villages such as Hay-on-Wye, there’s certainly plenty to explore. So it’s no wonder 20.2% would want to have a staycation in Wales.

In comparison, the area least likely to profit from a rise in the number of staycations is the West Midlands. Only 1.9% claimed that they would be likely to visit this particular region. It seems that many of us are not drawn to the city sights of Birmingham or the rolling Shropshire countryside.

Similarly, the East Midlands and Northern Ireland aren’t likely to benefit from people holidaying on home soil.

Staycations by Age

Staycation by age

The age group most likely to opt for a Staycation in 2017 are 45-54, closely followed by 35-44-year-olds.

In contrast, those in the 25-34-year-old category and 65+ are more than likely to choose a holiday destination abroad over a staycation in the UK.

Why are more people choosing to holiday in the UK?

Expense

18% said that they would be opting for a summer holiday in the UK because they feel that foreign destinations are too expensive. This could be influenced by the falling value of the GBP.

Those aged 35-44 are the most likely to shun a holiday abroad due to expense, while 55-64-year-olds cited cost as being the least influential factor.

Preference

17% are choosing to stay in the UK simply because they prefer it. Males are the most likely to stay in the UK out of choice, with 57% claiming that the UK is their preferred holiday hotspot.

20.9% of those who stated that they prefer to holiday in the UK are aged 45-54.

Terrorism

The threat of terror attacks is also a factor that is having an impact on the number of people who are choosing a staycation over a foreign holiday. 8.2% of respondents claim that the threat of terrorism will stop them from travelling to their preferred destination this summer. And, it is actually males that are more than likely to be put off holidaying abroad by the threat of a terrorist attack compared to females.

If you’re opting for a staycation this summer, be sure to take your Hatchbag boot-liner with you to protect your boot from any nasty spills or damage from suitcases and hair from your furry friends. Also, we’d love to see pictures of your favourite UK locations. Send us your snaps in on social to @HatchbagCompany for Twitter, @thehatchbagcompany on Instagram & The Hatchbag Company on Facebook.

Methodology

Hatchbag surveyed a sample of 1000 respondents who varied in age and gender from across the UK. The aim of the survey was to research attitudes towards staycations and to investigate which areas of the UK are most popular with domestic tourists.

Where can you visit Father Christmas this year?

Nothing quite says Christmas like taking the ones you love to visit Santa Claus. With his twinkling grotto and festive cheer, it’s also a good chance to find out what your little ones want for Christmas.

If a trip to visit Father Christmas is high on your agenda this December, we’ve rounded up the most magical places where your little ones might even receive an early Christmas gift.

Hyde Park Winter Wonderland, London

For six weeks every year, London’s famous Hyde Park is transformed into a magical wonderland of winter festivities for you and the family to enjoy.

The number of activities and entertainment shows on offer are endless, from ice-skating around the UK’s largest open-air ice rink to adventuring in the Magical Ice Kingdom to the jaw-dropping circus shows.

After visiting Santa, you can then finish off your visit with some delicious festive food, which can be found dotted around the venue.

When? November 18th – January 2nd (2017)

Where? Hyde Park, London, W2 2UH

Visit: hydeparkwinterwonderland.com

Ham House & Garden, Surrey

This beautiful 17th-century building and grounds will play host to a fabulous Santa’s Grotto trail this year. Follow the magical Christmas trail to find Santa who will be waiting ready with a Christmas present, ready for every child that he meets.

Alongside this, there will be storytelling as well as Christmas art activities too.

When? 10th – 11th, 17th-22nd December from 10am – 3:30pm

Where? Ham House and Garden, Ham Street, Ham, Richmond-upon-Thames, Surrey, TW10 7RS

Visit: nationaltrust.org.uk

Christmas Grotto, Stratford upon Avon

Once again, Santa will be taking residence in Shakespeare’s home town; Warwickshire’s most magical grotto.

With mesmerising Christmas lights lining the town, this Christmas grotto is truly enchanting. Let your little ones find the real Father Christmas whilst you enjoy the quaint streets that are filled with festive sights and smells. This event will give any Scrooges out there second thoughts about Christmas.

When? November 24th

Where? Magic Alley, 21 Henley Street, Stratford upon Avon

Visit: stratfordchristmasfestival.co.uk

Discovery Museum, Newcastle

Before Santa sets off on his magical journey, why not take the kids and pay him a visit at the Discovery Museum. Here, Santa promises to note down every present request from all the children who visit him and your kids can enjoy having their photo taken with him, before receiving a small gift.

When? December 21st, 22nd & 23rd

Where? Discovery Museum, Blanford Square, Newcastle Upon Tyne, NE1 4JA

Visit: discoverymuseum.org.uk

Visit Santa, Abergele

It doesn’t get more magical than visiting Santa in his log cabin in the woods covered in snow does it? Actually, it does.

At Visit Santa in Abergele, children can write their present wish lists to Santa, and after all that writing, the children and of course the grown-ups can all enjoy some festive food and drink hand prepared by Santa’s Elves. And, if that’s not enough, why not take a magical ride in Santa’s sleigh. 

When? December 3rd - December 23rd

Where? St.George, Abergele, Junction, 24a off A55, LL22 9BU

Visit: visitsanta.christmas and book your tickets here 

Santa’s Grotto at St.Enoch, Glasgow

If you hear the sleigh bells on your next visit to St. Enoch Shopping Centre then that can only mean one thing; Father Christmas has arrived in Glasgow to take up residence in his magical Grotto.

Having travelled from the North Pole with his trusted reindeers and helpful elves, Santa is waiting to hear what the children of Glasgow would like for Christmas. 

When? November 28th – December 24th

Where? St. Enoch Shopping Centre in Glasgow – the Christmas Grotto is located outside Debenhams on the 1st floor

Visit: St Enoch Centre Christmas Grotto booking

101 Ideas for Having Fun with the Kids this Summer

It is our pleasure to introduce the Best of British 101 Ideas for Having Fun with the Kids this Summer eBook. With the winter months finally behind us and the summer sun starting to warm our backs it’s time to look outdoors and plan our summer adventures.

Put together with the help of more than 100 of the best British bloggers, each of the ideas found within this e-book come straight from the heart and is one of the longstanding loves of each blogger involved. So, without any further hesitation, welcome to the gateway of summer adventures that you will remember for a lifetime. Oh, and if the good old British weather doesn’t quite hold out, don’t forget your Hatchbag!

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Keeping car clean after Children's Activities

We use our cars to ferry children to their various sporting activities and after-school clubs but the impact on the once smart interior of the vehicle can be significant. Within just a few hours the upholstery and car interior can become so messy and dirty that you may as well have not bothered to clean them. One of the best ways to minimise this problem is to fit your car with a protective boot liner.

keeping car clean after childrens activites

You may love watching the kids play football but the result on your car on the trip back home is less enjoyable. Wet towels and costumes after swimming classes can make the fabric in your car damp. Even after dance and gymnastics classes the glitter from costumes can spreads throughout your vehicle. Bulky sporting equipment such as scooters, bikes, golf clubs or cricket kits can also leave muddy streaks and potentially damage your upholstery.

Keeping a spare change of clean, dry clothes for the journey home is always a good idea. Ensure that you have a few plastic bags in the back of the car for wet or dirty kits. Most importantly, you can protect your car's interior from wet and mud in the first place by fitting a protective boot liner.

Hatchbag boot liners are designed to fit the specific dimensions of your car's boot. Simply select your vehicle make and model and choose your preferred colour for a durable boot liner. The liner can be easily removed for cleaning to ensure that your car retains its spotless interior, whatever family life may throw at it.