Captain Kidd’s Winchester – a family trail with added booty

At a time when political parties are being urged to do more for families holidaying in the UK, Winchester City Council is already proving that it's one step ahead by launching the city’s first printed guide for children.

Following feedback from visitors to the Tourist Information Centre, Winchester Tourism has worked in partnership with Treasure Trails Ltd to create a new, interactive trail designed to appeal to children between the ages of six and twelve.  The circular route takes children on an exciting journey into the city’s ancient past and offers the tantalising opportunity for families to enter a prize draw to win a substantial cash prize.

Ellen Simpson, Tourism Marketing and Development Manager for Winchester City Council, explained: “Over the last eighteen months colleagues in the tourist information centre had noticed a marked increase in requests for family-friendly activities. We know that the ‘staycation’ trend has been confirmed in Winchester as more people holiday at home to beat the recession.  So we are always looking for ways to do more to encourage people to explore the city and district. With the help of our colleagues we have tried to ensure that the route made the most of the many attractions in the city. ”

The two hour trail, called Captain Kidd’s Booty, is on sale in Winchester Tourist Information Centre for £5. The route has been tested by staff from the centre and their families, so the team will be able to deal with queries with an inside view. Two more publications are planned, a spy trail for older children and teenagers and a murder mystery for adults.

Cllr George Beckett, Leader of Winchester City Council and Portfolio Holder for Economy and Tourism, said:
 “Over 200,000 people will walk through the doors of our newly refurbished Tourist Information Centre this year, and an increasing proportion of them will be families who have opted not to travel abroad and who are looking for things to do during their leisure time.  This trail highlights the city’s best loved attractions, but it also shows people a new side to the city, the hidden passageways and unexpected architectural features that might otherwise go unnoticed.”

The children’s guide to Winchester is part of the Council’s Your Winchester campaign, designed to encourage local residents to become tourists in their own district.

Copies are available for £5 each from Winchester Tourist Information Centre.  The information centre is open Mon – Sat 10am to 5pm. Tel 01962 840 500, e-mail or visit the website at