South East

South West
South East
East Anglia
North West
Lake District



All Saints Church-Tudeley                When the daughter of Sir D Avigdor Goldsmid was tragically drowned in a sailing accident near Rye in 1963. The family where so upset they commissioned the Russian artist Marc Chagall to design a new East window in their local church at Tudeley in memory of their daughter.  The window was installed in 1967.  It was so admired that more windows followed.  Seven more in 1974 and a final four in 1985, the year Chagall died.  The Glass was made and fitted by Charles Marq of Rheims.  The glass at Tudeley will certainly rank as one of the best examples of 20th Century church art.  The church was rebuilt in the 18th Century but a building has occupied this site since the 7th Century.

Arundel                    A pleasant town on the River Arun.  A lovely high street with a nice selection of shops and old houses.  The town is dominated of course by the castle.  But does have two Churches. St Nicholas rebuilt in 1380 after the black death.  Although a Anglican Church, one end of it is the Fitzalan Chapel where the family hold Roman Catholic services.  The two areas divided by a Sussex iron screen.  During the English Civil War Parliamentarian forces bombarded the castle using cannon fired from the Church tower hence most of the castle Norman fortifications where destroyed.  The other fine church is the Roman Catholic Cathedral of St Philip Howard built in 1870.  It became a Cathedral in 1965.  There has been a settlement here since pre-roman times.  The town was strategically important due to its location crossing the river on the main east west road route through Sussex.  Arundel: has its origins in the French word Hirondelle meaning Swallow.  A Swallow is depicted in the towns Coat of Arms.
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Arundel castle       A castle has stood on this site since before William the Conqueror came in 1066.  However the oldest parts of the existing building are probably Norman dating back to the time of Roger De Montgomery one of Williams favourite knights.  The castle underwent several sieges and was extensively damaged by Parliamentarian forces during he Civil War.  After which it fell into a very dilapidated state being restored in the 18th Century and again in the 19th Century when a further two towers where added by the then 15th Duke.  It has been the home of the Fitzalen family for more than 500 years.  Earls of Arundel and through female descent the Howards (Dukes of Norfolk) the premier peers and hereditary Earls Marshal of England.  Despite religious persecution the family has remained Roman Catholic.  The interior contains some fine rooms especially the Barons Hall, the library 117ft long and 35ft wide and constructed entirely in mahogany, plus a Victorian room especially designed for the visit of Victoria and Albert in 1846.  Hanging from the walls art treasures including, Van Dyck, Gainsborough, Holbein, Constable and Reynolds, together with fine tapestries and furniture collected by the family over many centuries.  The castle is surrounded by 1,000 acres of parkland and sits majestically overlooking the surrounding landscape in similar fashion to that other great castle at Windsor.
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Battle                    The town is built on the site of one of the most important events in British history—The Battle of Hastings, where William the Norman, defeated Harold and became the conqueror and King of England in 1066.  The town is dominated by the massive gatehouse of the Abbey at the end of the High Street.  The town itself contains many old buildings some dating back to the 13th & 14th Centuries.
The origin of the Abbey goes back to the day of the Battle when William vowed to god that he would build a Church on the site if he was victorious, this he did.

The Battle of Hastings in 1066    On the day of the battle William marched his men from Hastings and took up position on a hill approx 400yards South of the English army who where drawn up on a higher hill nearby.  After a number of unsuccessful uphill charges at the English shield wall the Normans retreated.  The English army viewing the retreat abandoned their excellent defensive positions and pursued them.  William immediately saw what was happening sent in his cavalry and destroyed the English forces before they where able to return to their defensive positions.
This single battle had such a significance, by winning William created a royal dynasty that can be traced right through to our present Queen, helped to create the English language that so many people speak today and united a Kingdom under one ruler that would have reverberations for the next 1,000 years.
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Bodiam Castle      
A young castle in English history at a only 500years old but the view of the castle from the approach road, as you clear the wooded drive, is an impressive site.  The solid stone fortress seams to float on the water of the moat which surrounds it.  Built in 1385 as a deterrent against the French who threatened invasion, the fortification were never tested though and apart from a brief siege during 1480 its life has been peaceful.

Brighton                  The largest town in Sussex also the largest seaside town in the South East.  Evidence from the Neolithic period has been found nearby and Archaeology from the Roman period.  Nothing in the town however remains earlier then the Regency period.  A fishing village did exist through the Middle ages but it took a little bit of salesmanship to really put Brighton on the map.  The town must thank a certain Dr Richard Russell who arrived in 1754 and proclaimed the bathing and drinking of sea water to be the cure of most ills.  Wealthy invalids flocked to the village soon transforming it into a large, almost Spa Town.  In 1783 Prince of Wales (King George IV) came for a visit and liked the place so much he influenced his friends to journey out of London to join him.  In 1787 he commissioned Henry Holland to build him a seaside residence (Pavilion) so he could spend time in the town entertaining.  This gave Brighton the Royal Stamp of approval and signalled a start to its unique popularity.  A long promenade follows the entire length of the mainly shingle beach.  A pier and amusements complement this seaside town.  The lanes situated close the Royal Pavilion, once the area of homes for fishermen and their families have been converted into antique and curio shops.  Adjoining the lanes a square with cafes & restaurants. 
St Nicholas Church was rebuilt in 1853 but does have parts dating from the original built during the 14th Century.  The town is surrounded by an estimated 1,200 acres of parks and gardens.
Brighton : the original name meant “Beorhthelm`s enclosure” this was recorded in the doomsday book as “Bristelmestune” and up until the 19th Century was noted as “Brighthelmstone”
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Brighton Pavilion    Built in 1787, for the then Prince of Wales (King George IV) a large building in the classical style was erected for him with the interior decorated in the Chinese tastes that was so popular at the time.  Between 1815 & 1822 the Royal Pavilion was rebuilt to plans drawn up by John Nash.  He kept the Chinese interior but the exterior was transformed into the Indian Mogul Style, with the domes, spires and minarets that we see today.  George IV occupied it regularly until 1827, his brother William IV also spent some time in residence, so did Queen Victoria, however it was abandoned in 1845 when the Queen felt it did not give enough privacy for her growing family.  When she left the furniture soon followed.  When the local Brighton Council purchased the property it set about acquiring the missing furniture and today the interior appears much as it did 200 years ago.
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Bromley                   The town developed around the market place located at today`s Market Square, even today the town is a major shopping centre.  King John granted the town a Market Charter in 1205.  One of the towns main buildings is the Bishops Palace, now the town council offices but originally the home of the Bishops of Rochester from the early 10th Century till 1845.  The present building however only dates back to 1775.  At the North end of town on the site of the Bromley & Sheppards College are 20 Alms houses which date back to 1666 and are the result of a legacy from Bishop Warner.  They are the oldest of their kind in Britain, today serving the needs of retired clergy.  The Church of St Peter & St Paul was refurbished after bomb damage in the Second World War.
Bromley:  the town name means "Broom clearing or forest clearing where broom grows". London Bromley was recorded in 862 as "Bromleag" representing the two old English words Brom(broom) and Leah(clearing).

Canterbury             A very ancient city with more than 2,000 years of history and the site of Canterbury Cathedral.  There were Belgic settlements here pre-Roman time and Julius Caesar took the area by storm in 54B.C. after their conquest in 43A.D. the Romans established a centre here called Durovernum.  In 597 St Augustine arrived on his mission to spread Christianity in England and built his first cathedral.  Something like half the Medieval walls which encircled the old city on the Eastern side still remain.  They date from the 13th & 14th Centuries, they were partly built on Roman remains.
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Canterbury Cathedral   The Cathedral of course dominates the city, the original was built by St Augustine but nothing remains.  In fact nothing pre-Conquest does remain.  A little while after the Conquest a new Cathedral was built by Lanfranc, the first Norman Archbishop.  Since that time there have been many additions, the oldest remaining part of the Cathedral is the crypt dating from 1100.  Only one English monarch is buried here, Henry IV, who lies with his Queen Joan in Trinity Chapel.  The tomb of Edward, the Black Prince is close by and described by many as the most magnificent in England.  In Trinity chapel you will also find the shrine of St Thomas a Becket, Archbishop from 1162-1170 when he was murdered by four knights of Henry II after a long and bitter feud.  The nave completed in the early 15th Century is 187ft in length, 71ft in width and 79ft in height.  The tall central bell tower which dominates the external views of the cathedral dates back to 1498 and is certainly one of earliest large brick structures in England.  Viewed from inside all but the top 50ft is visible.  130ft above the floor level is the magnificent fan vaulted ceiling, the South window is a splendid example of 12th Century art and the whole Cathedral is alive with stained glass, despite the Civil War and the Second World War damage.
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Chartwell                 The home of Sir Winston Churchill from 1924 until the end of his life.  The rooms, left as they were in his lifetime, strongly evoke his career and wide interests, with maps, pictures, documents, photographs, books and personal mementoes.  Two rooms are given over to a museum for his many gifts and uniforms.  Terrace gardens descend towards the lake, the garden studio containing many of Sir Winston`s paintings is also open.
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Chatham Dock Yard                  Founded by King Henry VIII it was the home to the Royal Navy for over 400 years. During that time Chatham provided Britain with more than 400 fighting ships, from the days of sail right through to the iron Cruisers of the 20th Century.  Within the 80 acres of the oldest part of the docks, there are no less than 47 scheduled ancient monuments, rope making facilities. Exhibitions dedicated to the Royal Navy and original ships of the fighting services including the Victorian Sloop Gannet and HMS Cavalier the last remaining World War Two Naval Destroyer.  The submarine Ocelot built and launched at Chatham. Plus the Royal National Lifeboat Institutions historic collection of 15 lifeboats from the time of oar power to the most modern reversible.
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Dover Castle           The inner keep and bailey dating back to 1180, the royal apartments and chapels used some 800 years ago.  The oldest part of the castle is the Roman lighthouse situated next to the Saxon church. the well 289ft deep is considerably older than the castle itself.  Take a walk in the 13th century underground fortifications originally dug in 1216 at the time of the French attack.  The battlements and towers protecting the castle. Over a thousand years of history within the walls, throughout this long history, until the late 1960s the castle has been a military headquarters and garrisoned continuously.
Beneath the castle and within the White Cliffs are the World War II tunnels where some 700 men and women masterminded the evacuation of 330,000 British and allied troops from Dunkirk in 1940.  They also actively reported the movement of ships and aircraft over the channel during the 5/6 years of war.

Eastbourne           The town became popular with Victorian high society during the 19th Century when it became one of the places to be seen during the summer vacation.  For long walks along the beach and promenade together with a wander along the pier.  A feature of the coastline are the chalk cliffs to the West of the town, rising to over 600ft above sea level at Beachy Head.  One of Eastbourne's oldest buildings is called Pilgrims. Dates back to the 12th Century.  It is said underground passages link it to the Lamb Inn and the Church of St Mary`s.  Many fortifications where built in the town during the Napoleonic Wars, some can still be seen today.  Eastbourne : meaning East of the Bourne.  From the Olde English “Burna” which means stream.  Therefore we have East of the Stream.  The particular stream that gave the town its name rises near St Mary`s Parish Church.  Recorded in the Doomsday book as Burne, then in 1279 as Estburn. 
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Emmetts Garden    Situated in 18 acres on a dramatic hillside location with a fine collection of trees and shrubs.  Laid out in the 19th Century, this charming garden is located at the highest point in Kent and contains many rare, exotic trees and shrubs from around the world.  The interest in summer, centres on the rock garden and rose garden with the coming of autumn bringing brilliant colours as the garden prepares to sleep the winter months away.
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Goudhurst               A popular and very picturesque village set on a hill top surrounded by orchards and hop fields.  The village gained prosperity from the weaving industry during the Middle ages.  Excellent views over the Weald of Kent to the North.  The high street is graced by many old attractive tile hung, weather boarded and timbered houses.  Smuggling was rife in this area during the 18th Century and it is rumoured that a secret passage exists connecting the Church with the Star and Eagle pub.
Goudhurst: village name recorded as Guithyrste in the 11th Century.  The word is taken to mean wooded hill of a man called Gutha.

Church of St Mary Goudhurst            The church is mainly 15th Century and the majority of the exterior described as robustly perpendicular, although the tower was struck by lightning in 1637 and rebuilt three years later in the Gothic style.  The doorway has a classical surround but the hinges are Gothic.  The Nave is a bit of a curiosity having been added to whenever money became available.  Without any doubt the glory of the church is the Culpepper memorials, located in the South aisle and South Chapel. The family where based at Bedgebury just 2.5 miles South of Goudhurst.  Deeds to their manor dating back to 815AD.  The family where great iron masters and their Bedgebury foundries made many of the guns for Sir Francis Drake and his navy in the battle with the Armada in 1588.

Hastings            An ancient port that became famous because of the landing just along the coast in Pevensey by William the Conqueror in 1066.  The town prospered during the Middle Ages, but suffered very badly during the 100 years war with France when it was attacked repeatedly.  Prosperity waned when the harbour became silted up.  During the 19th Century Hastings became a leading seaside resort, when the travelling public discovered its excellent and extensive shingle beach.  The most interesting part is the old town, where the fishermans quarter is situated.  Fishing has been the main industry for centuries.  With no harbour the boats are hauled up onto the beach.  Look out for the tall narrow wooded huts which are used for drying the nets and storing the fishing gear. The church of St Nicholas houses the Fishermans Museum.  The 600 foot long pier was completed in 1872.  It was blown up in two places during the second world war to prevent enemy soldiers using it as a landing stage. 
from the Olde English word “Ingas” (people of) tends to be used to mean (territory of the people of) “Haesta” (meaning violent one, related to the modern hasty).  Recorded in a document of 1050 as “Haestingceaster” the Ceaster suggesting the site of a former roman settlement.

Hever Castle           A romantic double moated castle with a varied history stretching back over 700 years. parts of the outer walls were built in the 13th Century.  The castle was the childhood home of Anne Boleyn, it was her family who added the Tudor manor house in approx 1500.  Henry VIII spent time at Hever wooing Anne before making her his second wife.  The American William Astor acquired Hever in 1903 and spent great amounts of money and time restoring it to its previous splendour.  He was also instrumental in creating the lovely gardens and 35 acre lake.

Leeds Castle           Established for over a thousand years on two islands in the middle of a natural lake.  Leeds castle is one of England's oldest and most romantic stately homes.  Known affectionately as the Ladies Castle, Leeds was home to six of the Medieval Queens of England and most infamous of monarchs King Henry VIII.  The castle now houses a magnificent collection of Medieval furnishings, tapestries and paintings. administered by a charitable trust.  Surrounded by over 500 acres of rolling parkland and gardens a natural home to many varied varieties of waterfowl.
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Nymans garden        One of the great gardens of the Sussex Weald with many rare and exotic plants on view. Beautiful trees, plants from all over the world in a garden created by the Messel family.  Lovely lawns, old cedars, Italian fountain in the walled garden.  A sunken garden, laurel walk and an abundance of flowing shrubs.

RHS Wisley Gardens      For over 80 years, Wisley Garden has continued to be a source of inspiration, advice and an example of good gardening practices for members of the society and other visitors.  The Alpine meadow, carpeted with wild daffodils, brilliant rhododendrons in early summer. The rock garden, the wild garden, the rose garden, fruit fields and modern gardens, the trees and shrubs of seven acres, while the glass houses provide shelter for both plants and people throughout the seasons.

Rochester                City with a long history.  There were probably Prehistoric and certainly Celtic settlements.  The Romans established an important base here which they called Durobrivae here where their road crossed the Medway.  When the Romans had left these shores the Anglo Saxons came and they called the area Hrofesceaster. William the conqueror built a castle here.  In the High Street stands the Guildhall dating back to 1687.close by is the Corn Exchange.  Further on down the street are two interesting old hotels the bull built approx 400 years ago, Dickens definitely stayed here and the hotel was featured in Pickwick Papers and as the Blue Boar of Great Expectations, it is also rumoured that Queen Victoria stayed here.  The other hotel the George is circa 1600 and stands on the remains of an old church. The vault dates back to 1325.
Charles Dickens of course stayed in the city many times and used many buildings as his source of inspiration; Eastgate House at the Eastern end of the High Street was Westgate House in Pickwick Papers.  Nuns House was used in Edwin Drood.
Near to the ruined castle stands the Cathedral.
Rochester: derived from the Roman Durobrivae meaning (bridge/fort) from the two British (Celtic) words Duro (fort) and Briua (bridge)  The present form of the city`s name comes from the Anglo Saxon Hrofaescaestrae which was written in the 8th Century.  It become Rovescestre when written in the Domesday book.  Eventually becoming Rochester

Rochester Castle      Guards the river crossing of the Medway.  It was close to here that the Romans first built their fort to protect the crossing.  The present castle was started in 1087 by Bishop Gundolf and is thought to be one of the finest preserved examples of Norman architecture in England. The great keep measures 113feet high, 70 feet square and walls of 12feet thick.  The castle has been subject to siege 3 times and was partly demolished by King John in 1215 when he undermined the South East tower.

Rye                            Today Rye stands almost 2 miles in land near the mouth of Rother, yet it was once a Flouishing Port with the sea at its walls.  One of the original Cinque ports, the French have landed here on South Coast raids at least 4 times and in 1377 burnt the town to the ground.  The prosperity of the town declined in the second half of the 16th Century as the harbour silted up.  It is a town for walking with a wealth of Medieval, Tudor, Stuart and Georgian houses.  Many places to see including the museum and the land gate which is a pre 1377 structure, and the last remaining gate of the four that gave access to the town. the parish church of St Mary dates back to the 12th Century with a magnificently carved mahogany altar.  Mermaid Street is well known for its steep cobbled road lined with 15th and 17th Century houses, with the Mermaid Inn a notorious haunt of smugglers in the 18th Century.  The name Rye represents the Olde English phrase "aet thaere iege" which means "at the island" the original town was built on an island in the marshes.

Parish church of St Mary in Rye    The church rises above the walls of this walled town. Some of the original fabric still remains of the original 12th Century church.  It was severely damaged by the French in 1377 and coastal winds have not been kind to it.  What one sees to day is a mixture of Norman, traditional, Early English and modern architecture.  The altar is magnificently carved mahogany dating from the early 18th Century.  But most of the windows late 19th to early 20th century. The church clock was made in Winchelsea in about 1560 and is thought to be the oldest turret type clock still functioning. The giant pendulum swings inside the church.  The clock face is flanked by the figures of 2 boys who strike the bell on the quarter but not the hours, hence the name quarter boys.

Sissinghurst Gardens     Of international acclaim, this connoisseur's garden was created by the late Vita Sackville-West and her husband, Sir Harold Nicolson.  Between the surviving parts of an Elizabethan mansion.  There is much to see at all seasons, including a spring garden, orchard, white garden and herb garden.
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St. Augustines Abbey Canterbury     The ruins of St Augustines Abbey are probably one of the most important ecclesiastical sites in England.  An Abbey was first built here in the time of the saint but was subsequently torn down more than once.  The 7th Century remains tell us much of the life in an early Christian monastery, buried in the grounds, St Augustine and many of the early archbishops of Canterbury.

St Martins Church Canterbury           St Martins “the oldest church in continuous use in England” is hard to contest, although the small Chapel at Escomb near Durham also lays claim.  We do know as fact that St Augustine set up his mission here when he arrived from Rome in AD597.  However it is written by the Venerable Bede that a Church dedicated to Martin had been built in Roman times approx AD90 to the East of Canterbury.  It is also written by Bede that Queen Bertha the wife of the Saxon King Ethelbert of Kent had worshipped here prior to the arrival of Augustine.
Archaeological evidence in the neighbourhood does seem to confirm this thesis.
Therefore we can safely say that an original place of worship was founded on this site in approx AD90 which was eventually demolished and a new church built over the Roman remains in approx AD560.
The exterior is a tapestry of different building materials, Roman tile, ragstone, flint, brick and any other material that came to hand on the day.
The Church is known in all English speaking Christendom as St martins - the mother church of our Motherland and the Whole Anglican Communion