Heart of England
Hi! I'm Anne Roberts and I'm honoured to be a Blue badge Tourist Guide for the fascinating Heart of England region.
I'm a proud Mancunian by birth and stayed in the North for my studies at the University of Sheffield in beautiful Yorkshire. Having spent a few years experiencing Life in the Fast Lane (I'm an Eagles fan) in London, I now live in lovely, leafy Leicestershire and appear to have become an honorary Midlander!
Before becoming a tourist guide, I had several different jobs ... selling ice creams on a beach in the South of France, Assistant Auditor in the Civil Service and teaching English as a Foreign Language, to name just a few! The major part of my working life, however, was as a secondary school teacher of Modern Foreign Languages ... mainly French but also German (in the early part of my career), Spanish (in the later part) and Italian, as a treat!
So what's so good about the Heart of England? Well, the name, to start with! It says exactly what it is: the beating heart of the country, where the roots of industry began to grow and spread, where decisive battles were fought, lost and won and where, in Stratford upon Avon, in the late 1500s to early1600s, the English language found a voice which still speaks to the world today ... William Shakespeare! Partner this with stunning landscapes, rushing rivers, chocolate box villages, historic towns and working cities, heritage foods, beers and cider - have I whet your appetite? Then come and explore with me!
I currently offer walking tours of Stratford-upon-Avon, Oxford, Leicester, Coventry, Birmingham and other towns and cities, as well as coach tours of wider areas within the region.
Literature, theatre, art and history are my particular interests. My passions include Shakespeare, Jane Austen and Agatha Christie - ask me about my Two Janes Tour! I’m also a BIG fan of Downton Abbey, Bridgerton and crime fiction, especially Morse, Lewis, Endeavour. Come on a tour with me: I’d love to show you around some of the film locations used in those tv series!
|Coach tours, especially extended tours|
|Architecture: churches, cathedrals, public buildings, castles and palaces|
|Shakespeare and Stratford upon Avon|
|Richard 3rd, Leicester and the Battle of Bosworth!|
|The Plantagenets and the Tudors|
|Language and literature: there, their, they’re and other aspects of grammatical complexity|
|Walking Tours, especially of Leicester, Birmingham, Stratford upon Avon and Oxford|
|Crime authors and fictional detectives|
|Art/Paintings & Sculpture|
Especially the Pre-Raphaelites and Renaissance
|Castles & Palaces|
|Decorative Arts/Arts & Crafts|
Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery - prize-winner 2019
|Ghosts, Murders & Mysteries|
Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery
Stratford upon Avon, Warwick, Kenilworth and Royal Leamington Spa
Birmingham and West Midlands
Leicester, Nottingham, Derby and the East Midlands
Churches and Cathedrals
Royal Warwick, The Royal Weekend Party 1898
|Sports & Pastimes|
|Stately Homes & Country Houses|
Baddesley Clinton, a moated Tudor Manor House
Art at the National Trust including Upton House
Stratford, Royal Shakespeare Theatre, The Swan, The Other Place, The Playhouse
Stratford upon Avon
Cotswold towns and villages
Jane Austen is my favourite author of non-contemporary fiction. I’ve been besotted with her since childhood! Find out about her links with the Midlands with me!
As a teacher with many years experience, I have a great breadth of knowledge about this - and a passion for it, too!