Suffolk, the romantic county
PUBLISHED: 11:59 31 January 2017
© Parrish Colman Photography 2016
'Tis the month for romance, so bare your amorous soul, pin your heart on your sleeve and get that lovin' feeling
Pop the question
Seize the moment! There are some truly, madly, deeply romantic places in Suffolk to declare your everlasting love. Take a trip to Southwold pier, share a laugh at the Under the Pier Show, warm the cockles of your hearts with a hot chocolate, stroll to the end and gaze out to sea. Let your love blossom in the gardens at Helmingham Hall, or Abbey Gardens, Bury St Edmunds. Or what could be more romantic than atop the ancient walls of the castle at Framlingham or Orford?
Stroll hand in hand
Walking is a wonderful way to spend time together in the beauty of the countryside or beside the rugged coast. Suffolk’s benign climate, gentle rolling terrain and big skies make it the perfect place for walking, whether it’s a short circular stroll around a charming market town, a bracing beach side walk or a longer countryside hike.
Find some ideas at www.discoversuffolk.org.uk
Star crossed lovers
Big skies are one of the great attractions of Suffolk and at night they’re darker than many other more populated parts of the UK – perfect for stargazing! So, wrap up warm, grab a telescope or a good pair of binoculars and head out into the countryside one starlit night to gaze at the heavens. Good spots to try – Tunstall, Westleton Common, the Suffolk coast, the middle of Suffolk.
Watch the sun come up
Whatever the time of year, Suffolk is a magical place to watch the sun come up, but perhaps the best places of all are on the coast. It’s not called the Sunrise Coast for nothing! Head to Shingle Street for sheer atmosphere, or the top of Burrow Hill, near Butley, overlooking the Butley River. It’s an unforgettable sensory experience watching a thin sliver of sunlight appear on the horizon, to the background of hundreds of wading birds in the waking hour.
The art of love
Suffolk is the birthplace of one of the nation’s most romantic painters, Thomas Gainsborough. Having your portrait painted by someone like Thomas Gainsborough and bestowing it on your loved one was a truly romantic thing to do in the 18th century. You can find out more about him at Gainsborough’s House in Sudbury, where he was born and which is about to undergo major redevelopment as an art centre of national importance.
Drama and romance
Northanger Abbey at the Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds, February 2 - 11
What could be more romantic? A Jane Austen novel played out on stage!
Catherine Morland loves a good novel and the more ‘horrid’ it is the better. At 17, she is taken by her neighbours, the Allans, to Bath where she encounters the social whirl denied her at home. When Catherine accepts an invitation to the Tilney’s country seat at Northanger Abbey, lurid images from her favourite gothic novel, The Mysteries of Udolpho, threaten to overwhelm her. However, all misunderstandings are eventually resolved and, as in all the best Jane Austen novels, the young heroine finally gets her man.
Adapted by acclaimed Austen specialist Tim Luscombe, whose Mansfield Park was also produced and toured by the Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds.
Music . . . the food of love
Kingfisher Sinfonietta Orchestral Concert, Framlingham College Theatre,
February 14, 6.30pm
A splendid concert of well-known pieces for St Valentine’s Day. With conductor Elgar Howarth and Leader Beth Spendlove, the orchestra plays Massenet Meditation from Thais, Mozart Overture Cosi fan tutti, Prokofiev Romeo and Juliet Suite No.2, Kachaturian Adagio from Spartacus, Elgar Serenade for Strings in E min plus Salut D’Amour for Violin and Orchestra.
Tickets: £12, £10 concessions, £2 f/t education
from Framlingham Stationers, 01728 724244,
or at the door.
Framlingham College, Framlingham, Suffolk.
Do something daring
Would you walk on hot coals for your significant other? You can give it a try on Sunday February 19, 3.30pm, at Bury St Edmunds Rugby Club, The Haberden, Bury St Edmunds, IP32 2BL. The Valentine’s Firewalk will see some brave souls take the challenge to help raise money for the Stroke Association. Go on, you can do it!