February has the first school holidays of the year and brings with it a whole host of exciting events and things to do in Northumberland, especially during this half term holiday. We've listed all the events and things that are happening in February below and also picked out our highlights for you. If you'd like an in depth look at what's on in the week ahead be sure to visit our Events This Week page. It's crammed full with ideas for things to do and is updated weekly. Receive all the latest news about events in Northumberland by signing up for our monthly Newsletter.
Cragside House, Gardens and Estate and Wallington Hall are both incredibly popular National Trust properties in Northumberland. To celebrate the school holidays they are open from Saturday 16th to Sunday 24th February. At Cragside you can take part in the 150th anniversary celebrations of the Cragside Estate with Dream Flags and the kids can 'Wake up at Wallington' and discover how the Trevelyan family live.
The highlight of February for me is a quirky little tradition that takes place at Alnwick Castle on Shrove Tuesday. It all starts at 2pm when the Duke of Northumberland hurls a football from the walls of Alnwick Castle to a huge crowd below in the pastures. This football match between the Parishes of St Michaels and St Pauls is known as the Scoring of the Hales and the winning team is the first to score two hales (or goals). It's always a spectacle and gathers a nice crowd to watch the fun. Also in Alnwick, The Alnwick Garden is open again after closure for essential maintenance work. The theme of events in February focusses on cooking with After School Cooking, Boys in the Kitchen and Dads in the Kitchen!
Howick Hall Gardens opens it's doors on Saturday 9th and Sunday 10th February for it's annual Snowdrop Festival. It's a stunning display in one of the UK's top gardens (Garden of the Year 2009 Winner) and they open again the following Wednesday 13th to Sunday 17th February. The tearooms (the home of Earl Grey) will also be open during these times from 10.30am to 4.00pm.
Woodhorn Museum, located at the Queen Elizabeth II Country Park, have a winding house demonstrations throughout the month. It's the last Victorian Engine House in Northumberland and you can see how it all works. They also have Family Colliery Tours every Saturday and Sunday at 2pm and the Narrow Gauge Railway that runs through the park (Saturdays and Sundays 10am - 3pm, subject to weather conditions). During the half term holidays you can take a 'Closer Look at the Pitmen Painters', finding the hidden objects in a sensory exploration of these great works of art. Other half term activities include Meet Captain Jack and Pirate Mask Craft.
Cinema and the Arts
Northumberland's Arts Centres and Cinemas offer an excellent choice and range of theatre and film. If the weather is bad, or just too cold to tackle, why not stay indoors and enjoy some culture or a film. The Maltings in Berwick, Alnwick Playhouse, Queen's Hall Arts Centrein Hexham, The Forum Cinema in Hexham, The Phoenix Theatre in Blyth.
For a list of weekly Markets and Farmer's Markets visit our Markets in Northumberland page. Finally, here's a full list of events happening in January around Northumberland, with web links where available.
There is a full list of events for the month of February below, with web links where available for more information. For regular updates and news don't forget to follow us on Twitter and Facebook.