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Explore these great castle and historical sites this easter break

Looking for something to do this easter holiday, then check out these amazing historical sites all across England for you to visit and explore.

1066 BATTLE OF HASTINGS, ABBEY AND BATTLEFIELD

1066 BATTLE OF HASTINGS, ABBEY AND BATTLEFIELD

While we all learnt about the battle of Hastings in school, but for some of us that was a few years ago, so heres a brief recap why it was on off the most important battles on British soil.

The Battle of Hastings in 1066 was a significant event in English history. It was fought between the Norman-French army led by William, Duke of Normandy, and the English army led by King Harold II. The battle took place on October 14, 1066, at a site now known as Battle, located in East Sussex, England.

William’s army had invaded England from Normandy, and the two sides met at the Battle of Hastings. The battle lasted all day and was very bloody, with both sides suffering heavy losses. In the end, the Normans emerged victorious, and Harold II was killed in the battle.

After the battle, William ordered the construction of an abbey on the site of the battlefield to commemorate his victory. This abbey is now known as Battle Abbey and is open to the public as a historical attraction. The battlefield itself is also a popular tourist destination, with visitors able to explore the site and learn about the events that took place there.

The Battle of Hastings had a profound impact on English history, as it marked the beginning of Norman rule in England. William became known as William the Conqueror and was crowned King of England in 1066, marking the end of the Anglo-Saxon era in England.

Wondering around this stunning ground you can see history all around you. There is something for all ages, we visited with our youngest children and they had fun.

To visit, we advise you to book online – it gets very busy and we wouldn’t want you to drive there and miss the experience.  

Information regarding where to park, how to get to abbey and much more can be found here.

APSLEY HOUSE

APSLEY HOUSE

Apsley House is a historic building located in London, England. It was the home of the Duke of Wellington, a British military leader who is famous for his victory over Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo in 1815.

The house was originally built in the 18th century as a townhouse for the Earl of Bathurst, but it was purchased by the Duke of Wellington in 1817. He used the house as his London residence for many years, and it became known as “Number 1 London” due to its prime location on Hyde Park Corner.

Today, Apsley House is open to the public as a museum. Visitors can explore the house and see many of the Duke of Wellington’s personal belongings, including his famous boots and military memorabilia. The house also contains a large art collection, with works by artists such as Velazquez, Rubens, and Van Dyck.

In addition to its historical significance, Apsley House is also an impressive example of Georgian architecture. The house has been well-preserved over the years and still retains many of its original features, including grand staircases, ornate ceilings, and marble floors.

Overall, Apsley House is an important cultural landmark in London, offering visitors a glimpse into the life and times of one of Britain’s most celebrated military leaders.

For more information regarding book and opening times, you can visit the English Heritage site which manages the property

AUDLEY END HOUSE AND GARDENS

Audley End House and Gardens is a historic property located in Essex, England. It was built in the 17th century for Charles II’s Lord Chancellor, and was later acquired by Sir John Griffin, who made significant improvements to the house and grounds.

The house is a fine example of Jacobean architecture, and visitors can explore the many rooms that have been restored to their original 17th and 18th century designs. Highlights include the State Rooms, which are richly decorated with tapestries, paintings, and ornate ceilings, and the Service Wing, which provides a glimpse into the lives of the many servants who worked at the house.

The gardens at Audley End House are also a popular attraction. They were designed by Sir John Griffin and feature a variety of formal gardens, including the parterre, the Dutch garden, and the Italian garden. Visitors can also explore the parkland surrounding the house, which includes woodland walks and a lake.

In addition to its architectural and horticultural attractions, Audley End House hosts a range of events throughout the year, including concerts, historical reenactments, and family-friendly activities. There is also a gift shop and café on site.

Overall, Audley End House and Gardens is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in English history, architecture, or gardens. The house and grounds are well-maintained and provide a fascinating glimpse into the lives of the people who lived and worked there over the centuries.

There are many reasons why one should visit Audley End House and Gardens. Here are a few:

  1. Historical significance: Audley End House is a fine example of Jacobean architecture and has a rich history dating back to the 17th century. The house and gardens have been well-preserved and offer visitors a glimpse into the lives of the people who lived and worked there over the centuries.
  2. Beautiful gardens: The gardens at Audley End House are a true highlight of the property. They were designed by Sir John Griffin and feature a variety of formal gardens, including the parterre, the Dutch garden, and the Italian garden. The parkland surrounding the house is also stunning, with woodland walks and a lake.
  3. Family-friendly activities: Audley End House hosts a range of family-friendly activities throughout the year, including Easter egg hunts, storytelling, and historical reenactments. There are also plenty of opportunities for children to explore and play in the gardens.
  4. Events and exhibitions: There is always something happening at Audley End House, from concerts and art exhibitions to historical reenactments and food festivals. Check the website for a list of upcoming events.
  5. Gift shop and café: After exploring the house and gardens, visitors can browse the gift shop for souvenirs or stop at the café for a bite to eat. The café serves a range of hot and cold drinks, sandwiches, cakes, and more.

Overall, Audley End House and Gardens is a fascinating and beautiful destination that offers something for everyone. Whether you are interested in history, architecture, gardens, or family-friendly activities, Audley End House is well worth a visit.

BEESTON CASTLE AND WOODLAND PARK

Beeston Castle and Woodland Park is a historic property located in Cheshire, England. The castle was built in the 13th century by Ranulf de Blondeville, and it was later owned by the Crown and used as a hunting lodge.

Today, Beeston Castle is a popular attraction for visitors to Cheshire. The castle ruins offer stunning views of the surrounding countryside, and visitors can explore the many towers, chambers, and staircases that make up the castle. Highlights include the well-preserved inner bailey, the castle chapel, and the deep well that supplied water to the castle.

In addition to the castle ruins, Beeston Castle and Woodland Park is also home to a 40-acre woodland park. Visitors can enjoy scenic walks through the woods, spotting wildlife such as deer and birds along the way. There are also several picnic areas and a café on site.

Beeston Castle hosts a range of events throughout the year, including historical reenactments, outdoor theatre performances, and family-friendly activities. There is also a gift shop on site, selling a range of souvenirs and gifts.

Overall, Beeston Castle and Woodland Park is a great destination for anyone interested in history, nature, or outdoor activities. The castle ruins offer a fascinating glimpse into the past, while the woodland park provides a peaceful retreat from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

For opening times and costs please visit the English Heritage website.

BELSAY HALL, CASTLE AND GARDENS

BELSAY HALL, CASTLE AND GARDENS

Belsay Hall, Castle and Gardens is a historic property located in Northumberland, England. It was built in the early 19th century by Sir Charles Monck, and it is a fine example of Greek Revival architecture.

Visitors to Belsay Hall can explore the many rooms of the house, which have been beautifully restored and decorated with period furnishings. Highlights include the Pillar Hall, the Drawing Room, and the Dining Room, all of which feature stunning decorative plasterwork.

The castle ruins at Belsay are also a popular attraction. The castle was built in the 14th century by the Middleton family, and visitors can explore the many chambers and passages that make up the castle. The castle ruins offer fantastic views of the surrounding countryside.

The gardens at Belsay Hall are another highlight of the property. They were designed in the 19th century by Sir Charles Monck, and they feature a variety of different areas, including a formal garden, a quarry garden, and a woodland walk. Visitors can also see the impressive collection of rhododendrons and azaleas that bloom in the spring.

Belsay Hall, Castle and Gardens hosts a range of events throughout the year, including concerts, art exhibitions, and family-friendly activities. There is also a gift shop and café on site.

Overall, Belsay Hall, Castle and Gardens is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in English history, architecture, or gardens. The property is well-maintained and offers a fascinating glimpse into the lives of the people who lived and worked there over the centuries. With the bank holidays it’s worth checking the opening times before visiting.

BOLSOVER CASTLE

Bolsover Castle is a historic property located in Derbyshire, England. It was built in the 17th century by Sir William Cavendish, and it is a fine example of Stuart architecture.

Visitors to Bolsover Castle can explore the many rooms of the Little Castle, which was built as a retreat for Sir William and his family. The castle features beautifully decorated interiors, including the impressive Riding House, which was used for training horses.

The Terrace Range at Bolsover Castle is also a popular attraction. This part of the castle features stunning views of the surrounding countryside, as well as a range of rooms and chambers that were used for entertaining guests.

The gardens at Bolsover Castle are another highlight of the property. They were designed in the 17th century by William Cavendish, and they feature a range of formal gardens, including a fountain garden and a Venus garden. Visitors can also enjoy scenic walks through the woodland and around the castle grounds.

Bolsover Castle hosts a range of events throughout the year, including historical reenactments, concerts, and family-friendly activities. There is also a gift shop and café on site.

There are several reasons why you should visit Bolsover Castle. Firstly, the castle itself is a fascinating example of Stuart architecture, and visitors can explore the many rooms and chambers of the Little Castle, including the impressive Riding House.

Secondly, the Terrace Range at Bolsover Castle offers stunning views of the surrounding countryside, and visitors can enjoy a range of rooms and chambers that were used for entertaining guests.

Thirdly, the gardens at Bolsover Castle are a must-see. They were designed in the 17th century by William Cavendish and feature a range of formal gardens, including a fountain garden and a Venus garden. The gardens are beautifully maintained and offer a peaceful retreat from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

In addition to the castle and gardens, Bolsover Castle also hosts a range of events throughout the year, including historical reenactments, concerts, and family-friendly activities. There is also a gift shop and café on site.

Overall, Bolsover Castle is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in English history, architecture, or gardens. The castle and gardens are well-maintained and offer a fascinating glimpse into the lives of the people who lived and worked there over the centuries.

CARISBROOKE CASTLE

Carisbrooke Castle is a historic property located on the Isle of Wight in England. The castle dates back to the 12th century and has a long and fascinating history.

Visitors to Carisbrooke Castle can explore the many rooms and features of the castle, including the Great Hall, which dates back to the 14th century, and the castle chapel, which was built in the 15th century. The castle also features a range of exhibits and displays that tell the story of the castle’s history and the people who lived and worked there.

One of the highlights of a visit to Carisbrooke Castle is the opportunity to see the donkeys that have been used to turn the castle’s well for centuries. Visitors can watch the donkeys in action and learn about the important role they played in providing water for the castle.

The castle also offers stunning views of the surrounding countryside and is surrounded by beautiful gardens and grounds. Visitors can enjoy a leisurely walk around the castle walls and explore the castle’s many features and attractions.

Carisbrooke Castle hosts a range of events and activities throughout the year, including historical reenactments, concerts, and family-friendly activities. There is also a gift shop and café on site.

Overall, Carisbrooke Castle is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in English history or architecture. The castle is well-maintained and offers a fascinating glimpse into the lives of the people who lived and worked there over the centuries.

As you can see these are 7 great places to visit across England this easter weekend. However if these haven’t excited you, English Heritage has over 380 different venues across England, with over 180 free to enter

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