At Paultons Park… Home to the UK exclusive Peppa Pig World, Paultons will be opening the park gates on Sunday.

Staff have been busily preparing the park since Christmas ready for guests More than 60 rides and attractions are included in the admission price, as well as all the Peppa themed fun.

There’s also a chance to grab a sneak peek at the construction of Paultons thrilling hot new ride MAGMA. But young adventurers will have to wait until Easter 2012 before exploring MAGMA's molten rock caverns and discovering the Jurassic secret entombed below.

At the University of Winchester… A SPECIAL Hampshire Writers’ Society event on Valentine’s Day will be officially opened by the Mayor of Winchester, Councillor Barry Lipscomb.

Aspiring and published writers from across Hampshire are invited to write a love letter, containing not more than 250 words, and bring it along to the event. Entries will then be judged by Winchester screenwriter and part-time lecturer at the University, Julian Unthank whose short film Love at First Sight made it to this year’s Oscar Shortlist and BAFTA Longlist.

During the evening, Patricia Duncker, award-winning author and Professor of Contemporary Literature at the University of Manchester, will give a talk titled Choosing English, where she explains why she and many writers choose to write in English even though it is not their first language.

The event will be held from 7.30pm on Tuesday at The Stripe.

At Osborne House… FAMILY focused guided tours taking take a fascinating peek into the family life of Queen Victoria, Prince Albert and their nine children this half-term.

From surprisingly informal everyday life to royal occasions and important anniversaries, the tours offer an historical journey through their special times spent at the house and provide an introduction to Queen Victoria’s extensive family.

Before or after their tour, families can stretch their legs around the terraces and Walled Garden and have fun looking out for red squirrels which can be seen scurrying around the lawns or leaping from tree to tree.

At Moors Valley Country Park… SEE it in a whole new light as the Electric Forest transforms it into an interactive night-time adventure playground of sound and light.

A magical display of illuminated installations and interactive playscapes will bring the Forest to life after dark during half-term.

A family-friendly trail – part night hike and part creative adventure – will take visitors on a journey of discovery deep into the forest and encourage them to explore and interact with art installations that play on all the senses and harmonise with the spectacular forest illuminations scattered throughout.

The self-guided trail will be open from 6.30pm to 9pm from tomorrow.

At New Forest Wildlife Park...

Need some exciting ideas for the children this February halfterm?

Why not go wild at New Forest Wildlife Park, where a host of fun-filled family activities will be on offer?

With badge making, animal- mask making and book-mark making on the Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday of half term (February 14, 15 and 16, from 11.30am to 3pm) there’ll be plenty to keep the children entertained. As well as the brain-teasing Nature Trail Quiz they’ll also be able to explore the beautiful wildlife park – set in forested grounds on the edge of the New Forest – and enjoy the amazing animals.

The Park has a restaurant and gift shop and there are keeper talks throughout the day as well as timed feeding sessions.

Animals can be adopted and keeper experience days are also available for adults and children over ten years.

To find out more about the exciting activities at New Forest Wildlife Park visit At Marwell Wildlife...


Visit Marwell Wildlife this spring halfterm and enjoy craft activities, special bug talks and watching the park's new arrivals find their feet!

From February 11 to the 19, visitors to the park can have fun learning about Marwell's Beautiful Bugs.

Find out all about insects and life in cold blood with the chance to meet a Royal Python everyday at 2pm.

You’ll also have a chance to see Madagascan Hissing Cockroaches and Giant Thorny Stick Insects up close.

While you’re there why not visit the park’s 800 plus Partula Snails in Encounter Village!

Marwell Wildlife is a key player in conserving the species of snails, which are extinct or critically endangered in the wild.

The charity has four new species of the snail – see if you can spot their babies!

The park is also celebrating the birth of a giraffe earlier this month.

Keepers were delighted when firsttime Mum Irsula gave birth to a beautiful calf.

The youngster is still finding its feet and has been welcomed by Marwell's herd of giraffes.

The baby which is a pure Rothschild’s giraffe is part of a European Breeding Programme.

Those who want to get crafty over half-term can contribute to a giant wildlife mosaic!

This takes place from Monday February 13 to Friday 17.

The mosaic is being built to mark the charity's 40th anniversary and now designers need your help to construct it!

The mosaic will be unveiled at a special birthday party on May 22.

This is just one of the many ways Marwell will be celebrating its birthday, for more information about events and latest news visit:

You can watch Marwell’s latest videos, including the birth of their giraffe at:

At Longdown Activity Farm...

LONGDOWN Activity Farm opens the farm gate for the 2012 season, welcoming visitors for February half-term. The Farm will be open from Saturday February 11, every day, until November 4 including weekends and bank holidays. 10am-5pm.

Whatever the weather, there will be lots of family farmyard fun to be had. The daily timetable is packed with activities, which run throughout the day, giving ample opportunity to see and feed the animals. Have a go at bottle-feeding a kid goat or even a calf!

Maybe hold a duckling or baby rabbit. The pigs are waiting to meet you – and you may even see some piglets.

Don’t miss the ‘We Love Ponies’ day on Tuesday February 14.

Presented by Julia from Pony Magic, this will be a fun day to show-case the farm’s new and improved pony riding area next to the stables. Meet the friendly ponies, have a go at grooming a pony or if you are age seven or under, why not have a ride?

(Extra charge for pony rides).

Billy the Shire horse is looking forward to meeting all his old friends again – and to making new ones too! As well as Billy, there are lots of other animals to meet including Kerry the cow, woolly alpacas, sheep, rabbits, ducks and geese…….and lots of new babies!

If the weather is bad – there are plenty of undercover play areas for the children to let off steam. The Farm has a fabulous soft play area, lots of trampolines, a huge straw barn or the quieter infant play area and sand pit. Whatever the weather – there’s always something to do.

n Longdown Activity Farm and Longdown Farm Shop are just off the A35 between Lyndhurst and Southampton.

Telephone: 023 8029 2837. Or visit