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Looking for romance?

Pucker up! It's officially the month of lurve - and to get y'all in the mood Muddy brings you the most romantic ways to spend Valentine's this year


Valentine’s Stay, Woolley Grange, Bradford on Avon, Wilts, Fri 9 to Sun 11 or Wed 14 to Fri 16 Feb

Enjoy a gorgeous candlelit feast (comes with baby listening service if you can’t find anywhere to dump the Mudlets) and overnight stay, before letting the hotel pick up the kids from your room for their very own Breakfast Club. Worth it, just for the lie-in!


Valentine’s Escape, Tudor Farmhouse, Clearwell, Forest of Dean, Glos, Sat 10 to Sat 17 Feb

champagne in ice bucket by bath

For the super-loved up (or those who want to be), Tudor Farmhouse is an idyllic escape from the world where you can explore the magical Forest and the Wye Valley, including Lover’s Leap (told you it was perfect). There are three romantic packages on offer – a two-night stay, a one-night stay or a six-course Valentine’s menu. Read the Muddy review


Thornbury Castle, Castle Street, Thornbury, Glos

Fancy sleeping in the actual room that Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn slept in? I know that relationship didn’t end well, but if The Tudors TV series is anything to go by there was a lot of heat between the sheets (and wasn’t Jonathan Rhys Meyers rather splendid at portraying it?!), and this bona fide castle with turrets and four posters can’t help but get the pulse racing!


On the road, Classic Car Hire, Melksham, Wilts

couple in convertible driving at sunset

There’s nothing like a road trip to tease out the romantic adventurers in a couple. And if you ditch the muddy hatchback for a Jaguar E-Type, Aston DB7, Triumph Stag or Alfa Spider, well, you’re definitely onto a VD date winner. Cotswolds Classic Car Hire has a whole fleet of classic beauties for hire. It provides maps and suggested routes, and also has a bulging Rolodex of hideaways, from farmhouse B&Bs to luxury manor houses, if you decide to make a night of it. Pass me my headscarf and shades, will you? (Er, and the woolly hat and parka.) From £165, tel: 01225 703377.



Valentine’s Tea, Lucknam Park, Chippenham, Wilts, Mon 12 to Sun 18 Feb

plate setting with love napkin

Stuff yer face in an 18th-century Palladian mansion overlooking beautiful gardens and unspoilt parkland, or take a romantic ride through the estate with that someone special, before heading back for a glass of champagne. Hell, why not go the whole hog and book yourself into Valentine dining at Restaurant Hywel Jones. Go on, you know you’re worth it.


Valentine’s Dinner, Bowood Hotel, Calne, Wilts, Wed 14 Feb

Do Valentine’s in style with a visit to The Shelburne Restaurant and enjoy the breath taking views across open parkland. Enjoy a romantic four-course dinner including a glass of fizz on arrival.


The Riverbarn, Fonthill Bishop, Wilts, Wed 14 Feb

Book now for a Valentine special at our very fave restaurant in the whole of Wilts!



Valentine’s Spa Day, Whatley Manor, Malmesbury, Wilts, Sun 11 t0 Sun 18 Feb

woman in pool outdoors

Get swept off your feet this Valentine’s with a luxurious spa day for two. Take treatments together in the dual treatment room, quaff champagne and then take to the pool. Bliss.


Valentine’s Day Sparkling Wine Evening, Woodchester Valley Vineyard and Winery, Woodchester, Glos, Wed 14 Feb, from 6pm

I recently went to a wine tasting with my significant other and found focusing on grapes rather than fodder was just as romantic as a meal at a restaurant. So I heartily recommend this outing to put some fizz into the night, not least because Woodchester Wines are delish and you’ll get canapes and a tour of the winery too.


Valentine’s Day Special, Harts Barn Cookery School, Longhope, Glos, Wed 14 Feb, 6:30pm

making chocolate truffles

Chocolate, oysters, Prosecco – let’s hit those aphrodisiacs hard! Another alternative to the candlelit dining option, making chocolate truffles together. And when you’re done, you can relax over some fresh oysters and a glass of Prosecco, before you head home loved up with chocolates in hand.


Fifty Shades Freed, The Screening Room, Cheltenham & Swindon, Fri 9 to Thu 18 Feb

jamie dornan dakota johnson fifty shades

For those of you who like your celluloid romance hot and steamy, Fifty Shades Freed will be out in time for Valentine’s Day. Hello, Christian! We’ve missed you!! It’s on at Swindon’s Regent Circus and Shaw Ridge Cineworld, bit for a bit of extra atmo, head to Cheltenham’s  The Screening Rooms, an upscale movie house that serves cocktails and deli boards (no coke and popcorn here) at your deluxe armchair-style seats. And your other half will enjoy it too, no? If not, meh, who cares?!


Vineyard Tour & Lunch, Three Choirs, Newent, Glos

sparkling wine and glasses

Gloucestershire’s answer to Napa Valley, the Three Choirs Vineyard in Newent near Gloucester offers tours and tastings at one of the country’s largest and oldest vineyards. During an hour-long tour through the vines, you can learn about the history of the vineyard and how the grapes are grown and then pay a visit to the winery where you can sample what dizzy heights the grapes are capable of despite the un-Californian weather. Afterwards, it would seem crazy not to stay on for a wine and cheese lunch (my favourite kind), and there are also rooms to book if, you know, you need to get a room.


Frozen, Theatre Royal Haymarket, London, from Fri 9 Feb

suranne jones in frozen

Yes, there’s your big romantic tragedies like Romeo and Juliet and Anthony and Cleopatra, but why not keep things mysterious with a psychological thriller? And it would be a good excuse for a trip to London! At the Theatre Royal Haymarket in the West End, the Royal Shakespeare Company is staging Frozen (no, not the Disney version!), a psychological thriller about a mother whose child goes missing starring Doctor Foster’s Suranne Jones. And we all know how good she is at psyching her audience out.


Additional reporting: Tonicha Luffman

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