Winchester PhotosWinchester is the county town of Hampshire located at the west end of the South Downs. It has a long cultural history, being known as Venta Belgarum during the Roman era. During the Saxon times it was the capital of the Saxon kingdom of Wessex and at one point the capital of a newly united England before the Normans made London the capital. The statue of King Alfred stands proudly in celebration of this this history.

The large Gothic cathedral is one of the largest in England and is built in a perpendicular style and was built around 1079, although there had been a previous cathedral building adjoining it which had been there since 642 and known as the Old Minster.  Winchester Cathedral is not just about the past and in the crypt is a modern sculpture called Sound II by Anthony Gormley ( the artist who created the Angel of the North amongst other well known works). The sculpture adds its own reflection and character to what is already a special atmosphere. In the grounds of the Cathedral are other interesting works including the prism pictured below. The cathedral also occasionally has exhibitions by the Winchester School of Art students.

Saint Swithun was a Bishop of Winchester in the 9th century and he is the inspiration of the weather proverb in that if it rains on Saint Swithun's day, the 15th July, it rains for forty days.

Winchester Photos

The Great Hall is the only complete building  remaining of Winchester Castle that was built in 1067. The building houses the Round Table, depicting the legendary King Arthur and his Kinghts The table was probably made in the 14th century and does not date back to the days of King Arthur (if the legend ever existed in real life). It was repainted for a visit by King Henry VIII and so they made King Arthur look like Henry. Outside the hall are the excavated remants of one of the towers and the city walls.

The Westgate is a medieval fortified gateway into the city that was later used as a debtor prison. It currently houses the Westgate Museum

The City Museum has an interesting exhibition cataloging Winchester's colourful history from the Roman times to reconstructions of Victorian and Edwardian shops.

Winchester has an array of other interesting buildings including Winchester College, which is belived to be one of the oldest schools in the country and a water mill.  The Winchester Guildhall from the 19th century is also a dramatic structure and an impressive building

With a history and culture like Winchester has, it is easy to see why it ranks so highly as a must see place. The city has a largely pedestrian area and a good selection of restaurants, cafes shops and hotels to make all of the cultural history more enjoyable.

Winchester Photos

Hotels / Bed and Breakfasts in the area

31 Queens Road
Bed and Breakfast
A warm and friendly welcome awaits you when you visit our attractive family home. Ideally located in the once royal seat of Winchester. Queens Road...
Wykeham Arms
The Wykeham Arms is a unique 18th century coaching Inn situated between Winchester College and the Cathedral tucked away in the quietest corner of...
Holiday Inn Winchester
Welcome to the new Holiday Inn Hotel in Winchester, the perfect place to stay for any trip, whether it be business, leisure or family. This gorgeous...
Marwell Hotel - a Bespoke Hotel
Marwell Hotel nestled in the beautiful Hampshire countryside and only minutes from Winchester Southampton Southampton Airport and the New Forest...
Marwell Hotel
Surrounded by tranquil forested grounds, the Marwell Hotel is a unique destination with plenty to offer. There is much to see and do nearby with the...