This past weekend, students and staff from UCEAP England, Scotland and Ireland set off on the annual Spring Trip, which this year, took place in the scenic Peak District of northern England. We started off the trip in Manchester, where we had a peaceful afternoon to explore the city and get some rest before we embarked on our trip bright and early Saturday morning.
After getting on the buses at the hostel in Manchester, we headed down to Buxton, an English spa town, where students went underground to explore Poole’s Cavern, a 2 million year old limestone cave named after an outlaw who had used it as his hideout hundreds of years ago. We also went on a guided tour of Buxton itself, which was a very quaint town that paid homage to its humble origins, such as a chemist that had been around since 1875, and a hotel where Mary Queen of Scots had stayed to take the waters of Buxton.
Once we had finished at Buxton, we climbed back aboard the buses and drove a short distance to Chatsworth House, a stately home owned by the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire. It was a stunning manor, with even grander gardens – the grounds seem to stretch on forever! Everyone could see why Jane Austen had been inspired to use the house as the basis for Mr. Pemberley’s estate in her novel Pride and Prejudice. Additionally, we had been super lucky with the weather the entire time, and it was a wonderfully sunny afternoon as students ate ice cream and roamed the premises.
Finally, we finished day one at Mount Cook, an adventure centre with scenic views of the surrounding countryside. Once we had hungrily polished off our dinners, we got to take part in some really fun team building activities, which involved all of us working together and getting creative!
In the morning, re-energized by a hearty breakfast and the promise of another cloudless day, we set off to the Heights of Abraham in Dovedale, where we rode in cable cars up to the peak, so we could have lunch with an incredible view! There was a tower with a harrowing spiral staircase and more caves to explore as well. After getting back down the mountain, we finished the Spring Trip with a hike up a nearby hill, then through a river, where it seemed like everyone else and their mother had also come out to enjoy the sunshine! By the time we got back to Manchester to drop everyone off at the airport and train station, we were completely exhausted, but overall I think the Spring Trip was such a fun time! Many thanks to the students, and the staff of Mount Cook and Travelbound, for being awesome!! See you next year!
For more photos of the trip, head over to our Facebook page!