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YOU can travel back in time on this holiday and trace thousands of years of British history, from Stonehenge up to the signing of the Magna Carta.
From the famous standing stones through to the celebrated document inspired by King John and the Georgian streets of Bath, this is a trip that will no doubt fascinate and delight.
After boarding the private coach in the early morning you will travel towards your hotel, visiting the quant villages of Castle Combe and Laycock along the way.
Both have featured in major films and TV series, Castle Combe in Stephen Spielberg’s War Horse and Lacock was used in some scenes for the Harry Potter films. Lacock also featured in the popular TV programme The Cranford Chronicles.
After dinner and a chance to relax in the hotel, day two will be all about Stonehenge, where you’ll head after breakfast.
The first stop of the day is the famous standing stones and its long-awaited and now open exhibition and visitor centre.
The exhibition contains nearly 300 archaelogical treasures found in the area, and also valuable insights into how and why the stone circle was built, and the people responsible.
The monument itself is a little over a mile from the centre, so you will have the choice of walking to it with a complementary audio guide or using the shuttle for the ride to the stones.
After seeing the stones, you will then travel to Salisbury Cathedral, which is unique among English medieval cathedrals having been built in a single architectural style – early English gothic.
The Chapter House here is home to the finest of only four surviving Magna Carta, the first formal document of its kind that paved the way for democracy. An exhibition explaints how it came about, and what its significance is even today.
On day three you will head to Bath and enjoy a full day at leisure in this fine city, which boasts its famous Roman baths, the Royal Crescent and beautiful Pulteney Bridge.
After breakfast the following day you will enjoy a brief tour of the Cotswolds, including the charming village of Malmesbury, before heading home.
Full Article in the excellent Bristol Post: http://www.bristolpost.co.uk/Discover-historic-gems-doorstep/story-25845069-detail/story.html#ixzz3OmEXVcC8
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A detailed plan of a medieval city has been produced by experts without any digging at the site.
The latest scanning techniques were used to uncover a network of buildings at the 11th Century Old Sarum near Salisbury in Wiltshire.
The results include a series of large structures, possibly defences, with open areas of ground behind possibly for mustering resources or people.
Old Sarum was the original site of Salisbury, which is two miles away
WHAT IS OLD SARUM?
- It was the location of the original Salisbury
- It combines a royal castle and cathedral within an Iron Age fortification
- The Romans, Normans and Saxons have all left their mark there
- For 150 years it was a major centre of government
Source: English Heritage
It was originally an Iron Age fort, established around 400 BC, and occupied by the Romans after the conquest of Britain in AD 43.
This latest survey of the site was carried out by the University of Southampton and concentrated on the inner and outer baileys of what would have been the fort.
Modern techniques used to survey the land included magnetometry, earth resistance, ground penetrating radar and electric resistivity tomography, which uses electrodes to probe underground.
The university’s director of archaeological prospection services, Kristian Strutt, said: “Archaeologists and historians have known for centuries that there was a medieval city at Old Sarum, but until now there has been no proper plan of the site.
“Our survey shows where individual buildings are located and from this we can piece together a detailed picture of the urban plan within the city walls.”
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The Wiltshire city is home to the iconic Magna Carta, and is listed among places such as Vienna, Chennai, and Toronto
Historic Salisbury – home to the iconic Magna Carta – is the only UK city to make it into a top ten “must-see” places in the world.
It joins a dream list that includes US capital Washington DC, stylish Milan in Italy and skiing paradise Zermatt, Switzerland.
A short hop from awe-inspiring Stonehenge, Salisbury was put on the world map by travel guide Lonely Planet as one of the key destinations for tourists next year.
It was rated above sight-seeing in Vienna, Austria, Chennai, India and Toronto, Canada by experts.
The Wiltshire backwater with a population of just over 40,000 was tipped as one of the world’s travel hotspots as it gets ready to celebrate 800 years as the nation’s keeper of the original 1215 Magna Carta.
Only four copies have survived and historians say the one kept at Salisbury Cathedral is the finest of them all.
Signed at Runnymede near Windsor Castle, Berks by King John the life-changing document which limited the once absolute powers of the monarch became the cornerstone of law, civil rights, and democracy and was used as a model for the US Constitution.
Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2015 guide said: “For too long travellers have considered Salisbury a short stop on the way to Stonehenge.
“But 2015 is set to be the year visitors linger in this quintessentially English city as Salisbury uncorks the champagne for the 800th anniversary of its greatest treasure, the Magna Carta.
“The lightning rod for the celebrations will be Salisbury Cathedral, the neck-straining medieval masterpiece whose Chapter House holds the Magna Carta.
“The cathedral itself boasts a clutch of superlatives, with the tallest spire in Britain, the world’s oldest working clock and Britain’s largest cloister.”
Best in Travel 2015 spokesman Tom Hall added: “We included Salisbury because it deserves to be recognised as one of the UK’s most important destinations for travellers next year.
“Bursting with history, top class restaurants, atmospheric nightlife and a host of festivals planned for 2015, we believe Salisbury is a must-see for domestic and international travellers alike.”
Lonely Planet’s top ten cities to visit in 2015:
1. Washington DC
2. El Chalten, Argentina
3. Milan, Italy
4. Zermatt, Switzerland
5. Valletta, Malta
6. Plovdiv, Bulgaria
7. Salisbury, Wiltshire
8. Vienna, Austria
9. Chennai, India
Article source: http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/salisbury-only-uk-city-lonely-4472062
More good news for Salisury tourism
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Salisbury Cathedral, home to the finest of the four surviving original 1215 Magna Carta, will be taking a leading role in the 2015 celebrations marking the 800th anniversary of the historic and iconic document the legacy of which has been its enduring global influence. Magna Carta’s clauses on social justice form the cornerstone of modern democracy and liberty worldwide and are as pertinent today as they were 800 years ago.
Robert Key, chairman of Salisbury Cathedral’s Magna Carta 800th anniversary committee, said “Salisbury Cathedral is extremely proud to own the finest preserved of the four surviving original 1215 documents. We know how important the Magna Carta is to people from across the globe and what it represents for them. The 1215 Magna Carta is inscribed in the UNESCO ‘Memory of the World’ register, underlining the fact that the documents held by Salisbury Cathedral, Lincoln Cathedral and The British Library are regarded amongst the world’s most significant documentary heritage.”
The Dean of Salisbury, the Very Revd June Osborne, said “Plans are being advanced here at Salisbury Cathedral to commemorate the forthcoming 800th anniversary of Magna Carta by promoting the values and ideals that it represents. Our ambition is to present a wonderful mix of spiritual and secular celebrations, promoting justice and freedom in a practical sense, and running a full programme of learning and outreach events for people of all ages. We aim to inspire further activity in the years that follow by leaving a lasting national and international legacy.”
Salisbury Cathedral intends to re-display and re-present its Magna Carta in the newly-conserved Chapter House, safeguarding the document for the future and using the latest interpretation techniques to communicate Magna Carta’s historic background and modern significance to the many extra visitors it expects to welcome in 2015. It also hopes to conserve and repair the Cathedral’s medieval Cloisters where the Chapter House is located.
Plans for further celebrations are underway, and aim to include a lecture series chaired by the Dean of Salisbury featuring international speakers exploring topics inspired by Magna Carta. The Cathedral also has ambitions to present a Medieval Fair for all the family, a pageant involving hundreds of local people, a special concert, a Celebratory Eucharist and a week-long flower festival, as well as other events. Alongside this activity, the Cathedral’s education department will work closely with schools throughout the year to deliver curriculum-focused programmes supporting citizenship and history.
Salisbury Cathedral is working closely with partners to deliver its ambitious programme, these include: The British Library, Diocese of Salisbury, Lincoln Cathedral, Magna Carta 800th Committee/ Magna Carta Trust, Wiltshire Council, Dorset County Council, Salisbury City Council, Visit Wiltshire, UNESCO, and AGEAS Salisbury International Arts Festival.
Brief background information on Magna Carta 1215
Magna Carta is one of the most celebrated documents in English history, regarded as the cornerstone of English liberty, law and democracy, and its legacy has been its enduring worldwide influence. It was written in Latin, the language of all official documents of the period, on a single skin of vellum (calfskin). It consists of 63 clauses written on 76 tightly packed lines, written with the standard medieval time and space-saving abbreviations. It is one of the most celebrated documents in English history whose importance cannot be exaggerated. It is often claimed to be the cornerstone of English liberty, law and democracy and its legacy has been its enduring and worldwide influence. The critical importance of the charter is that it imposed for the first time detailed written constraints on royal authority in the fields of taxation, feudal rights and justice, and limited unjust and arbitrary behaviour by the king. Magna Carta has become an icon for freedom and democracy throughout the world. The other surviving copies are held by the British Library and Lincoln Cathedral.
Salisbury Cathedral Chapter House opening times to see Magna Carta 1215 are:
Monday-Saturday: 1 April – 31 October, 9.30am – 4.30pm, 1 November – 31 March, 10.00am – 4.30pm
Sundays: all year, 12.45pm – 4.30pm.
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