#383 Go to the Diddly Squat Farm Shop
Cost: Free to go but the Merch is a little Pricey
Jeremy Clarkson is a person who divides opinion. Love him or hate him, his latest Amazon series 'Clarkson's farm' has shined a spot light on farming. after watching it myself, I decided it would be a new Bucket List item of mine to go and take a look one day. Sure enough, towards the end of 2021 we decided to camp in the Cotswold for the weekend and swing by his shop.
The shop itself is quite small, as I don't think Jeremy realised how popular it would become. Since the show finished, he's made a massive car park and put a bar round the back. We had to queue for around 45 minutes, but it was worth it to get some of the shows signature items:
- Bee Juice
- Cow Juice
- Candles that smell like his bollocks
On the one hand, I will say if you like the show, you have to check this place out. On the other hand, it was really busy and if you're coming from a long way, you'd have to do what we did and make a weekend of it.
#53 Go to Harry Potter WB Studio
Cost: £47 per person (and trust me, take spending money)
I love Harry Potter. I didn't actually realise how much until we went to this amazing place. Not only do you get to see how they made the movies, but you also get to put yourself in all the iconic areas. The great hall, Gringotts bank, the forbidden forest and pretty much anywhere around Hogwarts.
I finally got to try Butter Beer (it's like cream soda) and I got some pretty god Raven Claw merch.
The one negative thing I will say about this place is it doesn't half hit your bank account hard. Near enough £100 for two adults, £10 on audio set tour, £40 on lunch (thats two hot dogs and chips, two drinks and one ice cream) and then if you can't resist the shop, I'd say at least £100 is needed.
Other than that, if you are a fan of Harry Potter, get yourself down there in Watford. The tour is roughly 3.5 hours, but every minute of it is awesome.
#159 Visit Cadbury world
Cost: Free - £19 per adult entry
What person does not want to visit a chocolate factory? Sorry to say there were no Umpa Lumpa's, but there was plenty of chocolate!
I could go on forever, but let me sum it up in bullet points:
6 free bars of chocolate on entry
An interactive walkthrough of the history of Cadbury
4D little experience
Videos on how they may Roses, Cream Eggs and Buttons
A shop with soooooo much chocolate in it
A history of Cadbury museum
A playground (for the kids)
Activities like 'draw with chocolate' and green screen images
It was a great day out and somewhere I'd recommend. Particularly if you have kids.
Massive shout out to my sister who paid for my ticket as part of my birthday!
Read my full blog post here.
#371 Go in an Upside Down House
Cost: Free - £5 per entry
Brighton is a great place for a weekend get away or even a day trip. Me and some close friends decided to take a camping trip near the seaside town in early September. Sure enough the Bucket List provided something for us to do near by. It was something I came across over a year or so before hand. The upside down house. Basically, it's a house, upside down, with all the furniture glued to the floor/roof. You go in pretend like you're floating, take some pictures and turn them around.
Don't expect this to be some massive thing. In reality we did it in about 10 minutes and although it produces good photos, it isn't as big or as grand as I was expecting. Either way, I had a great time, I ticked something off, and even one of my mates joined in the fun. If you're ever at Brighton pier, take a walk of about 5 minutes to the right and trust me, you won't miss it.
#21 Enter tough mudder
Cost: Free - £100
Tough Mudder is essentially a 5 or 10k run (you decide how long when you sign up), however, every 500m you will be presented with an obstacle course. As the name suggests these courses are more than likely going to get you muddy and be tough. One of them included live electrical wires that you had to avoid, and another involved jumping into a tub of iced water.
My friend and I trained for a few months running once or twice a week and I can safely say that was nowhere near enough preparation because I was totally knackered after the first 250m of the run. It took us well over 4 hours to do the whole thing, but the elation after crossing the finish line is a memory I will cherish forever. God help me, I may even do another one!
If you’re going to do one, train hard but more importantly, get a good team around you, it’s not something I’d recommend tackling solo.
#10 Go to Loch Ness
Cost: Free to visit, but travel to Inverness
I've been a fair few places in this world. From the hustle and bustle of a big city like Vegas to the picturesque white sandy beaches of Hawaii, but in all my life I have never been anywhere as peaceful and as beautiful as Loch Ness. I honestly would like to live near there in my old age.
We drove around as much of it as we could, stopping at some of the vantage points that are dotted up and down. We didn't see Nessie, but you don't really understand the scale of this place until you see it for yourself. Utterly beautiful.
#23 Get a tattoo
#23 Get a Tattoo
Cost: £50-£80 an hour
My Dad despises tattoos, and to this day I don’t think he’s best pleased with this one. However, I wanted to know for myself how painful it really was.
Honestly, it was only bad when he went over a sensitive spot, like a bit of skin close to a bone, otherwise, it was relaxing.
BEWARE it's addictive and I'm planning to have a few more.
#78 Spend a weekend in Wales
#184 Get my back waxed
Yes, that is my back hair in the picture. Christine enjoyed herself for sure, but I didn't. It's like someone burned my back in a certain rectangle. It does hurt for only 20 seconds, but each seconds feels like a minute. I chickened out after two strips.
#77 Escape room experience
I still keep in touch with some friends from Secondary school, and four of us do our best to meet up every now and then and do some sort of activity. The first thing we did was an Escape Room experience in Bishops Stortford. I'd never done one before but it was really cool, and we did it in less than an hour.
#83 Visit Stonehenge
#49 Give blood
Yes I gave blood. I am usually quite scared of needles, but I figured that if I can help someone who needs it, then a little scratch is nothing. This one was all about giving back.
#66 Own a house with a garden
Cost: Frickin loads - but it's worth it.
For all the bad that happened in 2020, one good thing was that it allowed me and the Mrs to trial living together and save some money. After a few months, we made the decision to live together permanently, but it soon becomes clear and flat wasn't good enough for us both. We needed to tick off #66 from my list. And fast forward to Feb 2021 - we are homeowners! We live in a lovely little village and the house we've chosen has everything we could want. One of the best tick-offs by far!
#129 Visit 221b Baker Street
I'm a Sherlock fan, so when I found out that there was a Sherlock Museum at 221B Baker Street it had to go on my list. The Museum itself is full of props from Sherlock's adventures and there's a snazzy gift shop.
I dragged along my friend so that afterwards we could get a picture in the famous Sherlock and Watson hats. As you can see, he was very impressed.
#183 Black mask putty
I saw a lot of videos online of people doing this and being in agony taking it off. It hurt a little I'll admit, but it wasn't that bad. It also made my skin feel great!
#138 Make a website
You're on it! I have been in the Cyber Security/Web hosting industry for the last 7 years, and every part of it gave me the knowledge I needed to put this place together. Between how cool it is and it making money for charity, i'd say I've done a decent job.
#142 Be in the audience of a TV show
#143 Go to a drive-in cinema
Cost: £35 for two people
With the country just starting to come out of lockdown, we looked for potential date night options that had things like social distancing in mind. We weren't confident enough to go down the pub as soon as they opened, so we checked over the Bucket List to see if that could inspire us.
Sure enough, the idea of a drive-in cinema came up. We could stay in the car, not come into contact with anyone, and still have a movie date of some sorts. This cinema was located at Knebworth house, only about 5 minutes from our front door.
How it worked: We booked our tickets online and got there 15 minutes before the place opened (a lot of people had the same idea). After a little queue, we were given a Bluetooth speaker and then told to park up in the next available slot. To order food and drink, we had to go online and purchase things from the menu. An attendant then scooters along to your allocated bay and gives you the food through your car window. We went to see the greatest film of all time. Jurassic Park, but they show different classics every night.
Pros: It's a good idea for a date night and a new way of seeing your favourite films. The food is good and the staff are all polite and helpful.
Cons: It rained all night and windscreen wipers can have an impact on the viewing experience. So try to book on a dry night. There are toilets (portaloos) but they are kept illuminated by fog lights. If you're unlucky enough to be parked up by them, it can be quite annoying to have a light shine on your face throughout the movie (luckily we had a sheet in the car to cover it). Despite them being well organised, it does take a while to get set up and get out at the end. So go in expecting to be waiting around both at the start and at the end.
Overall, it was a fun night out and a nice way of tiptoeing back into reality after lockdown. I would certainly do it again.
#179 Enter platform 9-3/4s
I go to London a lot for work and always wanted to snap a picture. One day, the queue wasn't too bad, so whilst my girlfriend got a coffee, I leapt at the chance. #Ravenclaws
#115 Spend New Year’s in a city
I'm one of those people that are in bed by 10 on NYs and enjoy the extra day off, but I felt I should at least try to do the big party in the city thing. So, on New Year's Eve I went with my girlfriend to Arcade in London. It has changed my view on New Years. The lights, the dancing, the atmosphere - it was just great.
#167 Do archery
I try to keep in touch with school friends. The Bucket List is a great way of doing it. Once every month or so we make sure we meet up and more often than not we end up ticking something off. One time we did a package deal for archery, shooting and axe throwing!
#187 Go see NXT UK
I wanted to attend a live WWE event showcasing the UK specific brand. Whilst I didn't get to see a few names I wanted to, it was great to be part of the crowd and watch live wrestling. If you've never done it, give it a chance and go into it open-minded. You'll enjoy yourself.
#178 Trafalgar Square Lions
I was a little embarrassed to say I'd never actually seen these in person. I'd seen them on TV and knew they were just a few train stops away from Kings Cross, but I never had any reason to go. I honestly thought they'd be bigger, but they're still cool.
#218 Make a lemon meringue pie
I love Lemon Meringue Pie and I always wanted to make one. Turns out it's pretty easy and a great thing to do on a rainy day. If you want to follow the same recipe as me, check it out here.
#209 Take my nephew to wrestling
My nephew takes after his uncle with his love of wrestling. So, when an Indy promotion came to town, I got us some tickets. My sister came too, but she didn't enjoy it as much as us. Remember rule #8, include the people you love.
#190 Go to the ice bar
Cost: £35 for two people VIP
Website: The one I used permanently closed in 2020
This was a Christmas present from my parents for me and my girlfriend. A VIP ticket to the Ice Bar in London. (Having a Bucket List helps when people ask you what you want for Christmas/birthdays). I didn’t know that outside the Ice Bar is also the Fire Bar where you can warm up afterwards, so that was an extra bonus.
Not many people rate this experience as essentially you just stand in a freezer with a few cocktails for 40 minutes, and most of the stuff is just ice effect, rather than actual ice, but I personally had a fun time. If you do this, don’t expect a life-changing experience, imagine it as a pub with a gimmick.
#194 Walk over Tower Bridge
I live about 20 minutes from London by train, but I’ve hardly ever done the tourist thing. One of these I've always wanted to do is walk over Tower Bridge.
The bridge has a glass floor which is a little freaky when you first step out on it. Not only that, but it's also a mini-museum. It may seem a little pricey for what it is, but it's certainly something I would recommend doing if you're looking for an excuse to go to London.
#207 Elephant Experience
Like most people, I’m a big animal lover. You can probably tell that from looking at some of the items on my list. When I was younger, I went to Sri Lanka with my family and we visited an Elephant Sanctuary. I was only about 7 at the time, so I wanted to add this to my Bucket list to see if they’d gotten any smaller. They hadn’t!
What they are doing out there in Knysna South Africa to protect these amazing creatures cannot be underestimated. The elephant's health and wellbeing are all taken care of by a dedicated team of volunteers. Sally the matriarch of the group (the one I’m standing next to) was so gentle that she even let me touch behind her ears. Make no mistake though, if she wanted to cut my Bucket list adventure short, she could have. If you’re an animal lover get yourself down to this part of Africa, feed these guys and be sure to visit the gift shop and get yourself some elephant poo!
#231 Plant a tree
The Mrs and I went out to garden centres every weekend when we first got our garden. She got herself a Cherry Blossom tree and I went for good old fashioned Crab Apple. It's already baring fruit and growing. I'm so proud!
#233 Visit South Africa
#240 Go to Crufts
Cost: Free - £12.50
I love dogs. So naturally going to the worlds biggest dog show was going to be on my list. When I found out it was only £12.50 a ticket, I got my nan one too! Then I braced myself for a day of cuddles and misery because I wanted to take them all home. I saw Dalmatians, Bloodhounds, French and English Bulldogs, Pugs and pretty much every dog breed you can think of.
My one criticism of the event was I did see a lot of sad-looking dogs, left locked in their cages whilst their owners went for a walk – perhaps this is the done thing, but I personally couldn’t leave my dog unattended at such a massive event in a small cage.
#223 Learn how to DJ
Lucky for me, I work with some amazing people. The person next to me is a part-time DJ, so he brought in his equipment and taught me the basics. I'm pretty sure I could get through a set.
#227 Wear my own T-shirt brand
Cost: £25 (Expensive right?!)
When I created my website, I found the function to create my own online shop, using a custom products design company. I started out making stickers, bean bags and mugs and then tried my hand at t-shirt design. A simple 'work' style design with my logo on my nipple and the website on the back seemed to be an easy place to start. I've learnt a lot and changed providers since then, and now I'm comfortable saying I have a reliable, good quality supplier.
I have continued to make new merch, but fully appreciate that the only people that will buy them are either me, my supportive family or my close friends. Either way, this is my shirt, my brand, and I'll be ordering more.
If for some reason you want one, head on over to my shop and place your order!
#249 Become an organ donor
It's free, quick and easy to do. I figured if something bad does happen to me, I can at least help someone else have a chance at finishing their list. Rule #3 Give Something Back. This will change soon to be an 'opt-out' system
#251 Create a peach cocktail
A glass - duh
Peach Schnapps x 100ml
Peach Juice x 50ml
Cream Soda x 1 Bottle (use however much it takes to fill all but a couple of mm of the glass)
Cranberry Juice - only a dash at the end to get the colour, filling those last few mm)
#254 Visit the sky garden cafe
Our first date. I wanted to take her to somewhere memorable and my Bucket List provided the idea. At the top of the Walkie Talkie building in London, you can have a meal whilst overlooking the city. They have a beautiful garden up there and the food was brilliant. I was so nervous, I spilt water all over her, but I guess I did all right because she's still with me today.
#285 Visit the Sherlock Holmes pub
Not far from Trafalgar Square, you'll find the Sherlock Holmes pub. It has all sorts of Sherlock gimmick aspects, with artwork on the walls, the menu and even house ales called Sherlock and Watson. I'm not a big ale drinker, but I'm glad I gave them a try and i'll be going back for sure.
#255 Give snowboarding a try
One of first things I did on my list was to try Snowboarding. It was cold, painful and hilarious. I don't think i'll ever do it properly, but that first lesson gave me the basics. It did make me want to learn how to ski though, as that looked a little more... stable.
#263 Go up one of the mountains (Snowdon)
Cost: Free but trust me, buy some equipment
After spending the weekend camping in Wales, we tackled it. I won't lie, it was hell from minute one for me. As you can see from the images, I'm not the fittest guy. Snowdon is not drenched in my blood sweat and tears. However, after 4+ hours, we made it to the top! It was truly amazing and I'm glad I did it. I don't think I'll be doing it again though!
If you're thinking of doing it I would advise you to train on the stair master a lot, get some proper thick socks and walking boots, and only go up in a party of two or three. Go at your own pace, and take as many breaks as you need.
Yes, you can get a train up and down, but it's not the same if you don't do the climb yourself at least.
Overall, a very worthy entry on the LJP Bucket List!
#382 Go to Friends Fest
Cost: £26 per person
FRIENDS is arguably the best TV series ever. That's what I think anyway. Clearly, I am not the only one, because at certain times of the year Comedy Central runs Friends Fest.
You get to have a lot of photo opportunities, get a coffee from Central Perk, watch Friends episodes on a big screen and eat friends-themed food (Joey's Pizza).
In my opinion, it could be more. I'd even go as far to say as they could make a FRIENDS land/studio as they do with Harry Potter, but regardless, it was a great day out and the Mrs had a smile on her face the entire time - which is all that matters!
'Could I be ticking any more things off'
#278 Get a full body massage
At first, it felt like someone was just beating me up, but after a while, the magic kicked in. If you're stressed, treat yourself to a session. Afterwards, I felt lighter than air and was very happy!
#287 See the kelpies in Scotland
Cost: Free to see but tours cost
Not a lot of people know about these which is a real shame. The Kelpies in Falkirk Scotland are truly amazing to see up close. You don’t really get a sense of how big they are until you're standing underneath one of them.
They have a river lock in between them for boats to pass on through and there’s a great visitor centre with a gift and coffee shop. My only regret was I didn’t get to see them at night when they are lit up.
So, perhaps when I go back to Scotland I can revisit them at night.
#290 Chill with Churchill and Roosevelt
It's so random! They are just sitting in the middle of a High Street in London. Really would have liked to meet them both in person, but a selfie with their statue will have to do. They didn't say much but seemed to enjoy themselves.
#296 Eat five guys
I'm a McDonald's man so I never had a Five Guys before. I was told by friends it was amazing and if anything they sugar-coated it. I've never had a burger so incredible. That being said, you do get what you pay for because Christ is it expensive!
#269 Go to India
Cost: No idea, it was a business trip!
I'm fortunate enough to work in an industry where I might be needed to travel to do my job. At the start of 2019, I was assigned a job that required a four day trip to Bangalore, India.
I'd never been so far from home alone before, but what an experience it was! Despite only being there for four days, I met some great people, tasted some amazing food and observed some interesting things. Like how Cows are sacred and are allowed to do whatever they like!
I would love to return to India one day, be it through work or as a tourist. Either way, it's something I'll never forget.
#303 Go to Hooters
A place that is well known for its chicken wings, beer and well... ladies. I never found myself anywhere near one until I went to South Africa. The girls are all lovely and the food was awesome. I'll go back and next time get a T-Shirt.
#340 Start a Podcast
That's right! I launched a football weekly review podcast. It did only last about 6 weeks before life happened in 2020, but I'm hopeful that we can pick this up again soon. A good friend of mine became my co host and we actually started gaining a following. Fingers crossed 2021 doesn't have any more nasty surprises in store for football!
Listen to it here.
This was by know means a sophisticated podcast. I simply recorded a zoom meeting, ripped the audio and stuck some music at the beginning and end.
#343 Have a Dalmatian
Cost: Lots... puppy's range from £750-£3k
There were a lot of things in 2020 that sucked, but quite a few things (mainly thanks to my Bucket List and the Mrs) didn't. One of those things was this little guy joining our family. I've always wanted a Dalmation and visiting Crufts earlier in the year only made me want one even more.
He's cute, but don't let those eyes fool you - he can be a little devil if left to his own devices.
We did tons of research before we got him, and we're making sure he will be brought up in the right environment. We've even got him enrolled in puppy training classes. He's only 12 weeks old and he can already sit and stay!
Owning a dog is a big responsibility, and one that I am happy to take on again, especially seeing as most of our time is spent in lockdown at the moment.
"Here's a list of all the items I've ticked off, with descriptions, accounts, prices and website links to everything. Be sure to check out my blogs for more information on each experience"
Owner of LJP Bucket List