By Kingfisher Visitor Guides
There’s so much to do in Staffordshire but if you’ve only got time to scratch the surface, try these highlights to help you see as much of the county as possible.
Start your trip in the industrial north west of the county with a visit to The Potteries Museum & Art Gallery in Hanley, one of the six towns making up Stoke-on-Trent. You’ll see world-class collections of ceramics, items from the Anglo-Saxon Staffordshire Hoard and even an original Spitfire aeroplane, invented by local lad, Reginald Mitchell.
Head south towards Stone on the A34, stopping for lunch at the Wayfarer Country Pub and Restaurant. It’s part of a Staffordshire-based group of quality pub-restaurants and food is served from 12pm to 10pm every day. Indulge yourselves with the sumptuous sweet sharer for two, featuring sticky toffee pudding, passion fruit cheesecake, chocolate brownie or key lime pie. Continue south on the A34 to reach Stafford and soak up the history of the county town.
Pay a quick visit to the Grade 2-listed Stafford Castle two miles west of town – you can still see its 14th-century keep, although the castle was partially rebuilt in the Victorian Gothic Revival style. There’s a fantastic 360-degree vista across Staffordshire from the top of the hill. Just south of Stafford on the A449 you’ll find the 14th-century Moat House Hotel at Acton Trussell with its award-winning restaurant, which offers a fixed price dinner, à la carte dishes and a tasting menu. Highlights include venison loin with red cabbage, celeriac and pancetta terrine with blackberry ketchup.
You’ll see world-class collections of ceramics, items from the Anglo-Saxon Staffordshire Hoard and even an original Spitfire aeroplane, invented by local lad, Reginald Mitchell
Work off last night’s dinner with a walk on Cannock Chase. If you prefer a gentle stroll, start at the Marquis Drive visitor centre and explore the site of the former RAF Hednesford. For a wilder experience, park on Chase Road close to the glacial boulder – transported from Scotland to Staffordshire in the last ice age – and stride out across the open heath and woodland, watching out for deer and other wildlife.
Head east from Cannock along the A5 until you reach Wall and the remains of the Roman settlement Letocetum. The Trooper pub is renowned for its “bottomless lunch”, so the non-drivers in your party can get stuck into a three-course meal with unlimited cocktails or prosecco by the glass over a two-hour sitting.
Ancient Lichfield is just up the road so enjoy a wander around one of the smallest cathedral cities in England. Visit the homes of lexicographer Samuel Johnson and poet and physician Erasmus Darwin, or enjoy the tranquillity of Stowe Pool and the splendour of the cathedral. Take the A38 north to Barton Marina and enjoy a movie and a meal at the independent Red Carpet Cinema. It has two small and cosy screens showing current releases and offers a “film and food” deal for a perfect night out.
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