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England in Dec- Itinerary set(ish) specific places needed.

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Greetings. It is a while since I last posted.

We are off to England for about six weeks in December leaving from Australia. We know it will be cold and dark, but we like that, so we don't need comments on our sanity.

The Itinerary is pretty much set except for a few days. What I require are great things to see and do whilst in certain areas.

We like Walking/geology/nature as our main thing, then Neolithic History, War History and Medieval History. Ale and Ciders certainly, art galleries and shopping not at all.

What are your favourite places/secret gems at the following?
Any folk music venues you can recommend?

Week One - seven nights
Canal boat from Market Harborough. (we've been on one before and love it.)

Pick up car in Leicester
Week Two -
First half in Colchester for Christmas with my sister.

Second half making our way to Bodmin in Cornwall via Portsmouth and ???
(we have been to Dover, Brighton, Hastings/Battle and Stone Henge)

Week Three - seven nights

Week Four (five nights)
Making our way to Ambleside in the Lake District via Minehead (friend's house) and Wales last night in Ryl.

Week Five - seven nights
Ambleside and the Lake District.

Week Six (four days)
London for another sister and maybe Colchester again. This inconsiderate sister is spending Christmas in Australia!

Specific Questions.
Can we buy train tickets from London to Leicester at the time of travel or is it better to book ahead?
What is your opinion on Blaenavon. How much time to we need to visit it?
Is it also worth detouring through Bath? Is it worthwhile? or should we focus on Wales?

Much obliged.

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