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Britain, places to visit, attractions, heritageThis is the place to search for places and things of interest to visit in Britain, by name, location, type, keyword – or just have a browse.  It is a growing directory – 700+ entries as of October 2019.  Most entries have links for further information.

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The air forces memorial at Runnymede commemorates by name over 20,000 airmen who were lost in the Second World War during operations from bases in the United Kingdom and North and Western Europe, and who have no known graves. They served in Bomber, Fighter, Coastal, Transport, Flying Training and Maintenance Commands, and came from all parts of the Commonwealth. Some were from countries in continental Europe which had been overrun but whose airmen continued to fight in the ranks of the Royal Air Force.

The memorial is managed by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC), from whose website the above information has been taken.

Location/Address: Cooper's Hill Lane
Englefield Green
County: Surrey
Post Code: TW20 0LB
Main Historic Period: Modern
Useful Website Address: CWGC website
Tip/Nearby: Magna Carta and JFK memorials
Primary Management: Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Hever Castle dates from the 13th century and, famously, was once home to the Bullen, or Boleyn, family. Anne Boleyn spent part of her childhood here. After the Boleyns fell from favour, Henry VIII gave Hever to Anne of Cleves. It passed through various hands until being acquired by the American millionaire, William Waldorf Astor, in the early 20th century. Hever Castle and its grounds today is really his creation. He renovated the castle and created a lake, maze and Italian garden.

The castle and grounds are open to the public and also house the museum of the Kent and Sharpshooters Yeomanry. Hever additionally offers accommodation, golf and conference facilities.

Location/Address: Hever
Nr Edenbridge
County: Kent
Post Code: TN8 7NG
Main Historic Period: Tudor
Useful Website Address: Hever Castle's website
Tip/Nearby: Chiddingstone Castle, Knole Park, Scotney Castle
Primary Management: Private - open to the public

Block of smooth sandstone which allegedly (but probably not) gives the village of Chiddingstone its name and which has a mysterious past. One story is that it was used as a place of judgement in ancient times - hence 'chiding stone'. The village is a peach - most of the buildings are owned by the National Trust and are over 200 years old.

Chiddingstone is located on a minor road between Edenbridge and Tonbridge; the River Eden flows just to the north.

Location/Address: Chiddingstone
Nr Edenbridge
County: Kent
Post Code: TN8 7AH
Main Historic Period: Prehistory
Link to featured article: Chiddingstone's Chiding Stone
Tip/Nearby: Chiddingstone Castle, Penshurst Place, Hever Castle
Primary Management: National Trust

If you're looking for 100 Acre Wood, Poohsticks Bridge, the Enchanted Place - and all the other spots associated with Winnie-the-Pooh, you'll find them all in Ashdown Forest, East Sussex. Unless you know where you're going, probably the best place to start is the House at Pooh Corner, a shop and cafe (Piglet's Cafe), specialising in all things Pooh. You could even try to trap a Heffalump.

Location/Address: High Street
County: East Sussex
Post Code: TN7 4AE
Main Historic Period: Modern
Link to featured article: In which we go in search of Pooh, and find a Little Something
Useful Website Address: Website for the House at Pooh Corner
Tip/Nearby: Between East Grinstead and Tunbridge Wells
Primary Management: Other

Battle Abbey was built on the orders of William the Conqueror, in penance for the bloodshed, on the traditional site of where some of the fiercest fighting during the Battle of Hastings took place on 14th October 1066.  The high altar is supposed to mark the spot where Harold, last King of the English Saxons, fell.  The abbey was dissolved and largely ruined in 1558.  It then became a country house and, later, a school.  The school is still there and not normally open to the public, but the abbey ruins, which include store rooms and wonderful vaulted ceilings, can be visited and there is a particularly fine 14th century gatehouse.

The abbey is managed by English Heritage alongside the battlefield of 1066.

Location/Address: High Street, Battle
County: East Sussex
Post Code: TN33 0AE
Main Historic Period: Medieval
Tip/Nearby: Bodiam Castle, Bateman's
Primary Management: English Heritage

The Battle of Hastings took place on 14th October 1066.  It is probably the most famous battle in British history, when the invading Normans under William the Conqueror beat the English (Saxons) led by King Harold.  The battle actually took place several miles north of Hastings adjacent to and within where the pleasant little town of Battle now is.  Though the precise location of the battle has been much debated, wandering through the traditional site is worthwhile - and very pleasant when the weather's fine.

The battlefield of 1066 is managed by English Heritage alongside Battle Abbey, which was built as a penance and memorial afterwards.

Location/Address: Battle Abbey, High Street, Battle
County: East Sussex
Post Code: TN33 0AE
Main Historic Period: Norman
Link to featured article: 1066 - so what?
Tip/Nearby: Bateman's, Bodiam Castle
Primary Management: English Heritage

Fairy-tale like ruined castle, originally built to help defend Southern England against French attack. One of the most photogenic castles in the country, it almost looks as though it could come alive.  But it is a shell - with plenty of stairs to clamber up, crumbling battlements to fall off - and wonderful views from the top.

Location/Address: Bodiam, near Robertsbridge
County: East Sussex
Post Code: TN32 5UA
Main Historic Period: Medieval
Link to featured article: Beautiful Bodiam Castle
Tip/Nearby: Bateman's, Scotney Castle, Battle
Primary Management: National Trust

Victorian country house with wonderful wooded gardens and a romantic and historic ruined 14th century castle in the grounds.

Location/Address: Lamberhurst
Nr Tunbridge Wells
County: Kent
Post Code: TN3 8JN
Main Historic Period: Victorian
Link to featured article: A visit to Scotney Castle
Tip/Nearby: Bodiam Castle, Sissinghurst Gardens, Bateman's
Primary Management: National Trust

Bateman's was the home of author Rudyard Kipling for 34 years.  Set in acres of charming gardens, the house is 17th century but the interior is definitely early 20th century.  There's a real sense of the man there.

Location/Address: Bateman's Lane,
County: East Sussex
Post Code: TN19 7DS
Main Historic Period: Edwardian
Link to featured article: Kipling's House
Useful Website Address: National Trust listing for Bateman's
Tip/Nearby: Bodiam Castle, Sheffield Park
Primary Management: National Trust

Author and gardener Vita Sackville-West and her diplomat husband Harold Nicolson acquired the Sissinghurst estate in 1932 and set about creating the garden, divided into its separate 'rooms', for which it is famous. Sissinghurst has a colourful past as a POW camp for French captives and a Saxon pig-farm...there is no castle at Sissinghurst, though there is a splendid Tudor gatehouse and a large estate to explore; but go for the garden.

Location/Address: Biddenden Road
Nr Cranbrook
County: Kent
Post Code: TN17 2AB
Main Historic Period: Modern
Tip/Nearby: Scotney and Bodiam castles
Primary Management: National Trust
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