The LiNK Events


Downton Abbey England Tour
Tour Date:March 28 – April 5, 2015
Masterpiece Theatre brought thousands of viewers to Iowa Public Television through the success of Downton Abbey that literally took everyone by surprise. The series has become a phenomenon with appreciative viewers from all around the world. Downton Abbey follows the lives of the Crawley family and the servants who work for them, whose lives were changed forever during the First World War. The show is riveting and exciting at every turn. Throngs of devoted viewers are heading to England to get a glimpse of some of the castles, villages and settings used in the filming of this drama.

Preliminary Itinerary

Day 1 Saturday, March 28, 2015
Depart with your fellow LiNK Club travelers for the beginning of a great adventure in England, the setting for the Masterpiece Theatre Drama, Downton Abbey. We will travel into Heathrow Airport in London.

Day 2 Sunday, March 29 (D)
Upon arrival at Heathrow or Gatwick airport in the morning, you will be met by your tour guide and private coach who will take you up North West to West Wycombe Estate, before transferring to your hotel in Oxford or Area. West Wycombe Estate is one of the most theatrical and Italianate of all English country houses and the Dashwood family home for over 300 years. Set in 45 acres of landscaped park, the house as you see it today is the creation of the 2nd Baronet in the 18th century. This Palladian gem is frequently featured in screen adaptations of literary classics such as Cranford and Little Dorrit and more recently the television series, Downton Abbey (interior scenes). We will continue to our hotel in the Oxford area where we will spend four nights. Enjoy a welcome dinner with your fellow travelers at the hotel.

Day 3 Monday, March 30 (BD)
Enjoy a delightful English breakfast each day at the hotels. We will start off the day in Oxford. This “City of Dreaming Spires” is famous throughout the world for its University and its place in history. For over 800 years, it has been a home to royalty, scholars and writers, and since the 9th century an established town. Today, the city is a bustling cosmopolitan town. We will visit Christ Church College, one of the largest in the University of Oxford, the inspiration for Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland and recently the location where scenes from J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter films were shot. We will visit the dining hall (the dining room at Hogwarts’s). We will also drop into the Eagle & Child Pub where Tolkien and CS Lewis regularly met and read out passages from their books. After a little time in Oxford for browsing and lunch, we continue on to Stratford upon Avon, where we will visit Shakespeare’s Birthplace. The 16th Century half-timbered house of glove-maker John Shakespeare on Henley Street is where the young William was born and brought up. Today it houses an exhibition of the life of the world’s greatest playwright. We will also visit Anne Hathaway’s Cottage and beautiful little garden. Enjoy a little time walking in the village before returning to the hotel for dinner.

Day 4 Tuesday, March 31 (BD)
Today we will spend the day in one of England’s favorite destinations - the Cotswolds’ Area. Hidden here are hundreds of small towns and villages that combine into a harmonious and romantic place to visit. The villages are the true jewels in the Cotswolds’ crown, their honey-colored stone buildings, old-world charm and tranquility summing up so much of the Cotswolds’ magic. Amongst others there are Bourton-on-the-Water (often referred to as the ‘Venice of the Cotswolds’), Chipping Campden (one of the best preserved and most historically important towns in Cotswolds’) and Moreton-in-Marsh (with the largest open-air street market in the Cotswolds’ on Tuesdays). Enjoy a traditional afternoon tea at a favorite spot before returning to the hotel for dinner.

Day 5 Wednesday, April 1 (BD)
This morning you will visit Highclere Castle, one of England's most beautiful Victorian Castles set amidst 1,000 acres of spectacular parkland. The Carnarvon family has lived at Highclere since 1679, and the current Castle stands on the site of an earlier house, which in turn was built on the foundations of the medieval palace owned by the Bishops of Winchester for some 800 years. Longstanding friend of the Carnarvon family, Julian Fellowes had Highclere Castle in mind as he wrote Downton Abbey. He often commented he wanted a house which spectacularly testified to the confidence and soaring optimism of the Edwardian period. The success of Downton Abbey took everyone by surprise. The series has become a phenomenon with appreciative viewers all around the world. Downton Abbey follows the lives of the Crawley family and the servants who work for them, whose lives were changed forever during the First World War. After your visit the coach will take you to Bampton – a village and civil parish in Oxfordshire, England. But it’s not just any village! It’s where most of Downton Abbey’s outdoor scenes were filmed. Bampton was singled out as the ideal location for Downton due to its proximity to London and the fact it is so well-preserved. True fans will surely recognize Crawley’s house exterior, St Mary’s Church and the library, which serves as the entrance to the cottage hospital.
Please note time available in Bampton is subject to time spent at Highclere Castle Return back to the hotel for the last night.

Day 6 Thursday, April 2 (B, L)
Your first stop will be at Waddesdon Estate - originally nothing but farmland – was bought by Baron Ferdinand de Rothschild in 1874. He wanted a country retreat built in the style of a Loire châteaux and soon engaged a French architect. Waddesdon was created as a place to entertain guests at Ferdinand's famous 'Saturday to Monday' house parties. When his sister Alice, who inherited Waddesdon on his death, died as well, the estate passed to her Parisian great-nephew James de Rothschild and his English wife, Dorothy. Changes on the estate reflected their particular interests with the construction of a golf course and a stud for racehorses. After the Second World War, James was increasingly ill and he began to consider Waddesdon’s fate after his death. Having no descendants, and with the end of the era of grand country house entertaining, he decided to leave the Manor, its collections of national importance and 165 acres of garden and park to The National Trust. Enjoy a light lunch en-route to Windsor.
Before heading into London you will stop in the small English town of Windsor in Berkshire, where you visit Windsor Castle - the oldest and largest inhabited castle in the world and The Queen's favourite weekend home. The Castle is at the top of a steep hill, and the visitor route covers long distances. Visit the State Apartments, the Drawings Gallery, Queen Mary’s Dolls’ House and St George’s Chapel at your leisure using the complimentary audio tour, which lasts 1½ hours. We’ll enjoy three overnights in London. Dinner will be on our own tonight.

Day 7 Friday, April 3 (B)
Today we have a morning panoramic sightseeing tour of the world class city of London where we will take in the sights such as Buckingham Palace, Big Ben, House of Parliament and many more. Our favorite guide will give you a wonderful overview. The afternoon is on your own. We will provide you with dozens of opportunities for sites within easy access to our hotel. You may want to opt for a dinner cruise on the Thames River.

Day 8 Saturday, April 4 (BD)
On our last full day in the UK we will visit the Tower of London which has a fascinating history. Today the tower is home to the priceless Crown Jewels and it is now possible to view them at close quarters. The White Tower, Royal Armouries and Traitor’s Gate give an insight into the turbulent medieval history of the city. Next we’ll visit Westminster Abbey which has played an integral part in the history of London and the UK for nearly 1000 years. This glorious building manages to retain a beauty and grace despite its diversity of architectural styles. The Abbey has provided the glorious setting for every coronation since 1066 and has witnessed many other significant occasions, such as royal weddings and the funeral of Princess Diana. Get ready for our finale. Transfer to the London Eye for a farewell to the city while sipping champagne and remembering the fabulous tour to the site of Downton Abbey and the fabulous city of London before we are off to our farewell dinner and last overnight.

Day 9 Sunday, April 5 (B)
English breakfast at the hotel. Transfer to the London airport for our trip home with memories of a spectacular tour featuring a Masterpiece Theatre exclusive brought to you by Iowa Public Television.

Tour Inclusion
• Transfers to Des Moines International Airport
• Round trip Air from Des Moines to London (based on air availability)
• Deluxe Motorcoach Transportation
• Four nights in a 4 Star Hotel in Oxford area
• Three nights in a 4 Star Hotel in London
• Meals to include 7 Breakfasts, 1 Lunch and 5 Dinners
• All attractions as described
• Travel Protection Insurance

Tour Costs:
$4,389.00 per person double occupancy
Contact Natasha. 641-939-3407

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Disney’s Lion King
Des Moines Civic Center
Tuesday April 28, 2015
Tickets $69.00
For next year!
Reserve your ticket
Experience the phenomenon of Disney’s THE LION KING. Marvel at the breathtaking spectacle of animals brought to life by award winning director Julie Taymor, whose visual images for this show you’ll remember forever. Thrill to the pulsating rhythms of the African Pride lands and an unforgettable score including Elton John and Tim Rice’s Oscar®-winning song “Can You Feel The Love Tonight” and “Circle of Life.” Let your imagination run wild at the Tony® Award-winning Broadway sensation Newsweek calls “a landmark event in entertainment.” 641-939-3407

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The LiNK Travel Disclosure


The following travel policy has been adopted by The LiNK club of Hardin County Savings Bank. Group travel with friends and neighbors is a benefit to our members. All details and reservations have been made for you, so you may enjoy a well- planned, worry free tour. We work to secure the best seats and travel comfort for you.
RESERVATIONS: To make a reservation, you may contact Natasha Phillips at (641)939-3407, or email Checks should be made payable to Hardin County Savings Bank. We can debit payments from your account upon request. Down payment is due upon reservation when required.
WAITING LIST: Once a trip has been filled, a waiting list is started. Please do not hesitate to put your name on the list. Cancellations are common right up to the day of the trip, and we always want to fill every seat.
PRICING: Based on the projected number of travelers and on a break even basis. We aim to provide you a first class trip for the best price. First preference will go to our club members. Guests or nonmembers are welcome at an additional cost of $10 per person for day trips. Keep in mind, anyone who meets The LiNK qualifications may join the LiNK Club see the club director for details!!
PAYMENT: Booking far in advance ensures the best price, seats and rooms will be reserved for our group. Full payment or down payments will hold your seat. All payments are due by the deadline listed.
CANCELLATIONS: Please notify the club director as soon as possible if you have to cancel. This ensures those on the waiting list the opportunity to go. Being that each tour is planned with a target number of travelers, it is essential to keep us informed.
TRANSPORTATION: In the event transportation is not included in an event package, you may communicate your interest to the director. Opportunity for transportation will be provided if the required number of those interested in transportation is met. The additional cost of the transportation be divided among the travelers. (Day trips and extended trips always have transportation provided)