Author: Stella May

© Stephen Mckay on Geograph

Taunton in Somerset – a treasure which is waiting to be discovered

Taunton, the county town of Somerset, is a treasure which is waiting to be discovered. The menus in the cafes, bars and restaurants reflects the rich soils in the Vale of Taunton. The weekly farmers’ market offers the chance to explore the best of the local produce. The town has the benefit of many independent charming […]

Clacton-on-Sea, is an attractive Victorian sea side resort with some modern ideas.

The resort at Clacton-on-Sea was primarily the vision of Peter Bruff. He was engineer and manager of the Eastern Union Railway and working nearby on the line connecting Colchester to Walton-on-the-Naze. He realised that Clacton Beach was the ideal spot for a boat trip from London. Before the mid C19th a few fishermen sailed from […]

Hertford War Memorial by-Chris-Reynolds on geograph-3874923-
Hertford War Memorial by-Chris-Reynolds on geograph-3874923-

Hertford, on the River Lee, once a Saxon stronghold on the boundary between Saxon and Danish England

King Edgar established Hertfordshire with Hertford as its County town. The town is now a blend of old and new and set in delightful countryside. The War Memorial, dating from November 1921, has a bronze stag standing on a Portland stone plinth. Some of Henry II’s walls of 1173 have survived, James I demolished the […]

HG Wells Tripod sculpture representing a Martian invader from War of the Worlds © Woking TC
HG Wells Tripod sculpture © Woking Borough Council

Woking in Surrey, was home to HG Wells, and inspiration for The War of the Worlds

Modern Woking has grown up close to the medieval village known today as Old Woking. Here Henry VIII had a Palace and its ruins are a Scheduled Ancient Monument. By the C17th the village was a prosperous market place and some buildings and street layout remain to this day. Buildings In Woking In the heart […]

Arundel Castle © Visual Air
Arundel Castle © Visual Air

Arundel’s Castle overlooking the River Arun, celebrates 950 years of history in 2018

Roger Montgomery built Arundel Castle in the C11th, and it is now one of the oldest and most complete castles in England. It stands in superb grounds which look over the River Arun in West Sussex. And this year it celebrates the 950th anniversary, and today is the family home of the 18th Duke of […]

The Barn on The Green © Randall 18

Southwick on the road from Brighton to Shoreham has lovely historic features and links to its farming past.

Until the mid C19th Southwick was a farming and fishing village. There were a few cottages and a tithe barn on the west of The Green. A notable Roman Villa sat to the east of Southwick Street (a Scheduled Ancient Monument), and finds are on show in the Manor Cottage Heritage Centre. Manor Cottage dates […]

Heritage Centre © Shropshire Tourism
Heritage Centre © Shropshire Tourism

Oswestry on the Welsh and English border is an old market town with a turbulent history. The home of Queen Gwinevere, the town is full of folklore and legend.

An ancient market town, Oswestry stands by an Iron Age Hill Fort named Caer Ogyrfan. According to legend, this was the name of King Arthur’s father in law. Gwinevere may have been born here. Of the 25 hill forts on the Welsh borders, this is the largest and is very impressive. The fort shows that […]

Brighton seafront by diego_torres on Pixabay
Brighton seafront by diego_torres on Pixabay

Brighton, the play ground of the Prince Regent, later George IV, has entertained sea-side visitors in style for more than 200 years.

The Royal connections in Brighton go back before the Prince Regent. Sussex Yatch Club organises the Royal Escape Race  from Brighton to Fecamp in Normandy. The race celebrates the escape to France of King Charles 11 in 1651. Today a bunch of hardy volunteers organises the race and raises funds for sailing charities such as […]

Menai Bridge © SueCG on Pixabay
Telford's Menai Bridge © SueCG on Pixabay

Our great engineers were drivers for change in the industrial revolution which shaped so many of our towns. We’ve taken a look at some of them and the towns where they lived.

Telford’s Langholm Langholm in Dumfries and Galloway was the childhood home of one of the greatest civil engineers ever, Thomas Telford. He was born in Westerkirk, Langholm in Dumfries-shire, the son of a poor farmer who died soon after Telford’s birth. He grew up in Langholm, where he was an apprentice to a stone mason, […]

High Street © Guildford Borough Council
High Street © Gulidford Borough Council

Historic Guildford in the centre of Surrey has architecture from Saxon times through to the C20th. Enjoy a walk along the tow path by the River Wey, or take a boat trip from Dapdune Wharf.

The early town grew in importance because of its situation on the River Wey. It was a resting place for pilgrims on the medieval Pilgrims Way. Later the town was a coaching stop on the route from London to Portsmouth. The Angel Inn, a medieval timber-framed building on the High Street, remains a hotel to […]