Modern day royalty at Kensington Palace

As the second part of our Historic Royal Palaces half-price January, we headed to Kensington Palace, both of us for the first time. In the beautiful setting of Kensington Gardens, the Palace is an interesting mix of historical state apartments and high-security home of William, Catherine and baby George, amongst other royal family members.

Kensington Palace

The first highlight was not a sighting of Harry popping out to get milk, but an extremely chubby squirrel in a nearby tree.

Squirrel

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A very Tudor day at Hampton Court

Yes, we know it’s out of season to visit Hampton Court Palace and make the most of the beautiful gardens, but we had two crucial things… A beautifully crisp, sunny day, and [perhaps more pertinently…] half price entry (valid until 13th February 2015). So, we headed out to one of the prettiest parts of suburban London to visit the huge Tudor palace.

Hampton Court Palace

Henry VIII, responsible for large parts of Hampton Court, was a proud man – nowhere more evident than in the Tudor rose emblem found throughout. Except maybe his relationship history. That could take some beating.

Tudor Rose ceiling at Hampton Court Palace

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The Donkey Sanctuary

Over Christmas, while at home with my parents in the North, I visited the nearby Donkey Sanctuary

Donkey eating

The sanctuary is home to a variety of donkeys who have been rescued from poor treatment elsewhere. This site is one of many across the country run by the national Donkey Sanctuary charity, which was founded in 1969 by a Yorkshire-woman, Dr Elisabeth Svendsen MBE.

Donkey scratching

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A trip to Bradford

While I was back North, I spent a day in Bradford, which has a variety of free museums run by the council. Being a bit of an engineering nerd naturally meant that the Industrial Museum was first on the list. They have a variety of machines, many of which are kept in working order and run throughout the day.

Industrial machine oil

After exploring the steam engines, there is a section dedicated to the evolution of the printing press, and how the process was gradually automated and optimised.

Bradford Industrial Museum sign

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