Four Extraordinary Estates to Visit in Hampshire, England
Ralph Dutton inherited Hinton Ampner from his grandfather, John Dutton, in 1935. By then the building, believed to have been built during the 1540s had morphed under various owners from a Tudor to a Georgian and finally a Victorian mansion. Ralph, a devotee of Georgian architecture, disliked Victorian architecture ...
Four Highlights of the Test Valley and East Hampshire
A dramatic finale to this display involved a bush fire and the sudden appearance of several different birds flying overhead including vultures, storks and ibis. A cheeky meerkats was perched on a rock keeping an eye on the proceedings. Deep, throbbing African music accompanied this incredible display ...
Alton in Hampshire - All About Jane?
Jane Austen is not the only famous person to be associated with Alton, another well-known resident was Sweet Fanny Adams. Fanny Adams did actually exist but today she is more commonly associated with the phrase sweet fanny adams that translates as sweet nothing or very little. Her story is told in the Curtis Museum and her grave can be seen in the town’s cemetery on the Old Oldham Road.
Winchester College - a Medieval Marvel
The buildings surrounding this courtyard were constructed between 1392 to 1394. They were built around a courtyard for defensive purposes as the college was established a year after a big rebellion in the town. Designed to be self-sufficient the buildings in the outer court included accommodation for servants, a granary, a bakery and a brewery. As the water was not safe to drink in those days everyone drank ale. Only one female servant was allowed and that was the washerwoman who had to be old and ugly ...
Exbury Gardens - Exquisite Woodland Gardens in England's New Forest
I was like a child in a sweet shop, running from one glorious bloom to another, camera snapping frantically. Exbury Gardens in the New Forest was welcoming the spring with a fantastic display of magnolias, camellias, rhododendrons and azaleas. Magnolias are my favourite. The first magnolia was brought to Britain in 1688 by a missionary from America. This sparked a lot of interest in the magnolia and by 1800 most of the American species were being cultivated here ...
Ringwood - Gateway to the New Forest
Galloping through the Furlong Shopping Centre in Ringwood, Hampshire are bronze statues of a mare and foal created by Priscilla Hann. They are a beautiful reminder that Ringwood is in the New Forest and an ideal base for exploring further afield on foot, horseback, bus or bicycle. But spare some time to explore this historic market town that has some unique attractions, pretty walks and tours of the Ringwood Brewery …
Winchester, King Alfred's Capital of England
Winchester in Hampshire, England is a very popular tourist destination. Coach loads of visitors arrived and depart on Broadway in the city centre. Watched over by an imposing figure – the Anglo-Saxon King, Alfred the Great. His statue, created by Hamo Thornycroft, was placed there in 1901 to celebrate one thousand years since Alfred became king of England and made Winchester his capital. Alfred had successfully defended Wessex, a region of Southern England, against attacks from the Vikings and whoever ruled Wessex inherited the title of King of England ...
Exploring the Historic Waterways of Winchester in England
As I made my way across the water meadows of the River Itchen I found it difficult to believe I was not far from the city centre of Winchester. I was surrounded by leas of lush grass and thickets of trees. Beyond these I occasionally glimpsed the sparkle of water in the river. I was following in the footsteps of the poet Keats who found inspiration walking here during a stay in Winchester. Once upon a time, thousands of years ago, the River Itchen flowed through the centre of what is now Winchester. The Romans, skilled in engineering, altered the river flood plain and diverted the River Itchen further to the east. They also drained the land so that the town could be extended eastwards, allowing them to build over the former marsh. Just ahead of me, bathed in sunshine, were the beautiful medieval buildings of Saint Cross Hospital and the Almshouse of the Noble Poverty ...
Five Intriguing Attractions on the Isle of Wight
In the past the Isle of Wight has attracted many famous residents and visitors. Queen Victoria and Prince Albert built their family home, near Cowes. Lord Alfred Tennyson, poet laureate and the most famous Victorian was also a resident on the island. Today, its delightful old-fashioned ambience and easy accessibility from England's mainland ensure that the island is still a popular destination...
Osborne: The Home that Albert Created for Victoria
Victoria was Queen of England and Albert was her Prince Consort when they decided they needed a home for their large family away from public eye. Their search took them to the Isle of Wight, a place that that Victoria already knew and liked. Improved railway communications meant it was possible to travel between London and the island in four hours. It was here they found the Osborne estate perched on a hill on the outskirts of Cowes ...