Our weekend with Warner and “Friends”

warners holiday break

Our Head of Marketing for “The People’s Friend”, Kirsty, tells about her trip to Alvaston Hall with Warner Leisure Hotels.

You’ll remember Kirsty’s excitement from her previous post about the weekend away with the “Friend” – read it here.

Well, that’s us back from our weekend with Warner, and what a weekend it was!

We packed the car on Friday morning with all of the amazing craft activities from Craft Creations and Search Press; some Dundee cake from our local Goodfellow & Steven bakery; shortbread from Deans and of course all our luggage!

Driving down south

The drive down to Alvaston Hall Hotel in Cheshire was lovely, although a bit cloudy, and there was a squeal from the back seat when we drove over the border as Craig had never driven over the border.

Our Friday night started meeting, and having a drink with, all of our “Friends” who had joined us for the weekend.  Dinner and entertainment followed – the food was tremendous (that is a theme that continued all weekend!).

I treated myself to a long lie on Saturday morning whilst Margaret went into Nantwich with some of our guests and Jacki learned to dance (Cathy, the entertainment manager, caught me later and told me that Jacki is a natural so needs to keep going to lessons).  After a lovely lunch (see I told you that food would feature a lot!) we got set up for our craft session. We had loads of fun making decoupage Easter cards as well as pom-pom chicks. It was lovely to see our “Friends” continuing making their pom-pom chicks over the rest of the weekend, but one of our guests, Ruth, really did put us all to shame with her skills. A mother hen, 2 chicks and an egg as well as a nest were her creation by the end of the weekend.

Saturday night is all right!

Saturday night entertainment and dinner were tremendous, though I must say we were quite tired!

On Sunday morning, whilst Jacki went on the garden tour and Margaret tried meditation I had the pleasure of having a coffee with much-loved “Friend” travel writer Neil McAllister before his talk, which was fascinating.  I then skipped lunch (shock!) and treated myself to an amazing massage at the lovely spa – I had intended to try my hand at archery but the thought of a massage was too tempting!

Tea with Angela

The final exclusive “Friend” activity was a special afternoon tea with our wonderful editor Angela, who travelled down on the Sunday afternoon to meet our readers. We all had many cups of tea, and (food alert!) quite a few pieces of Dundee cake, Deans shortbread and Oor Wullie fudge, but – don’t worry – it wasn’t enough to spoil our appetite for dinner!

I thoroughly enjoyed the weekend; the hotel was amazing, the staff lovely, and the activities real fun. But the best bit of the weekend for me was meeting and making such lovely “Friends”.

If this is what work is, then count me in!   I am definitely putting my name down for the next trip – we are off to Nidd Hall in Yorkshire on November 5 for a Christmas & New Year themed break.  Don’t miss your new “Friend” out on May 2 to find out all about this trip, including how to book.



Head of marketing at The People’s Friend



Don’t just take my word for it, here is Margaret & Jacki’s thoughts.

Kirsty Matthews

Kirsty heads up the marketing for all of the DCT Media magazines. Kirsty has the very exciting job of telling the right audiences about the magazine wherever they may be and on whichever channels they interact with. It is fair to say it keeps her busy, but not always out of trouble! Kirsty loves getting out in the fresh air, exploring Scotland as well as other parts of the world and speaks fluent Spanish.