Leo's Rabbit was 'born' in London (he is a proper British - he loves his afternoon tea, fish & chips and the Royal Family - well... probably in this exact order ;-) ). He lives with MamaMus and PapaMus in a small but charming town in West Midlands - Royal Leamington Spa. Yes, you've heard it right - 'Royal'. Not that Rabbit is a royalty himself, but he certainly wouldn't mind to be associated with the world 'royal'.
As a small town Rabbit he is very proud of his beloved town and its kind and friendly people. And there are approximately 50,000 of them living in Leamington Spa. As for the population of rabbits...? I don't know and I would be very interested to hear from anyone who have counted them all.
The town itself may be small but certainly it is an elegant and fashionable one. With its Georgian and Victorian architecture, well maintained parks and beautiful gardens, trendy shops, restaurants and colourful night life it attracts many visitors. It's apparently often described as 'the best bits of London, all in ten-minute walk' - perfect for a small Rabbit indeed!
Leamington Spa originated from a tiny village called Leamington Priors. The village rich in mineral springs began making use of its saline waters in 1784 and in 1814 the Royal Pump Rooms and Baths were opened and attracted many visitors, expecting cures by bathing in pools of salty spa water. With the spread of the town's popularity, and the granting of a 'Royal' prefix in 1838 by Queen Victoria, 'Leamington Priors' was renamed 'Royal Leamington Spa'.
As you may probably suspect our Rabbit wouldn't be very found of saline treatments. He did however visit Royal Pump Rooms and didn't even have to get his paws wet as nowadays the building houses Leamington public library and Spa Art Gallery & Museum. In there you can find out more about the history of the Pump Rooms and see some medical equipment used for hydrotherapy and physiotherapy treatments.
Rabbit very cautiously passed by the Leamington Town Hall located on the main street, The Parade. He just sneaked in by it, hiding behind his big ice-cream. You may be wondering about the extra preconscious taken by Rabbit, but if you were a rabbit, you would have probably done the same. Apparently as a part of a Warwickshire Wildlife Trust project a falcon nesting box was placed at the top of the Town Hall tower, so one can expect some falcons flying around and that's certainly not a good news for a rabbit. You can watch a live feed from the nest here.
Leo's Rabbit enjoyed his stroll through the beautiful town of Leamington. He shopped a bit (wait for that credit card bill for all the carrots!), had a cup of cappuccino and then headed to the riverside Jephson Gardens for a bit of rest. What a perfect place to spend a summer afternoon - well maintained compact garden with the flowers in bloom, lovely picnic spots, a duck pond, coffee shop, sensory garden, glass house with exotic plants, boat centre and kids play area - all in one place.
Still there is more to Leamington Spa - lovely, green, family friendly areas (Victoria Park, Newbold Comyn Park & Golf Course, Mill Gardens), cultural venues (Royal Spa Centre, Loft Theatre, Apollo Cinema), leisure centres, numerous restaurants, high street retailers and quirky independent shops. This town has it all :-)
Leamington Spa has its own lovely website where you can find out more about everything what the town has to offer, including any upcoming events.
Leo's Rabbit 'lives' in my handbag and he travels with us everywhere we go. He has pictures taken at various locations, tourist attractions and places we visit. As a part of this blog we will describe Leo's Rabbit Travels to share our personal experiences from these visits. Hopefully couple of people (apart from us :-) ) will find it interesting and may even feel encouraged to visit one of Rabbit's destinations.