Winchester Things to Do

  • City Mill entrance.
    City Mill entrance.
    by CDM7
  • City Mill rear.
    City Mill rear.
    by CDM7
  • Water Wheel.
    Water Wheel.
    by CDM7

Most Recent Things to Do in Winchester

  • planxty's Profile Photo

    Another great pub.

    by planxty Updated May 11, 2014

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    Eclipse pub, winchester

    Quite near the Cathedral, in the Square, stands what used to be the rectory of the nearby St. Lawrence church.

    What the former vicars of the church would make of it now I'm not sure because it serves today as the Eclipse pub.

    It's a great place, and I really like it. It is tiny and very old-fashioned inside, blessedly without piped music. Although there is a tiny TV in the corner, I've never seen it switched on. This all assists in the now almost forgotten art of conversation, and you will not be long before some of the friendly (and occasionally slightly eccentric) locals engages you in conversation.

    Definitely a place to drop in for a quick pint - although it may not be as quick as you intend!

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    Walk besides the River Itchen,Winchester

    by CDM7 Updated Apr 4, 2014

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    City Bridge
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    This makes a lovely walk besides the River Itchen.At the start of the walk by the town bridge you will find a pub with outside seating,from here you can walk to Wolvesey Castle (about 15 minutes).An assortment of wildlife can be seen on the way,such as trout,moorhens and swans.

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    City Mill

    by grayfo Updated Dec 28, 2013

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    Rebuilt in 1743 the City Mill is a surviving example of an urban working corn mill, powered by the River Itchen, which can be seen passing under the mill. In March 2004 the National Trust undertook a restoration project and the mill resumed grinding flour. Freshly milled flour is on sale with flour making demonstrations taking place on Saturdays and Sundays. The mill is also a stopping point for otters from the river, with a special bypass allowing them to be caught on CCTV as they pass through.

    Sunday to Saturday: 10:00 am to 5:00 pm

    Adults: £4.00
    Children: £2.00
    Family: £10

    email winchestercitymill@nationaltrust.org.uk

    May 2011

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    KING ALFRED - 1

    by balhannah Updated Dec 22, 2013

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    King Alfred

    We have parked our car in the street named Broadway. We had just driven past a huge statue, so on alighting from the Car, I head in the direction of the bronze Statue.

    The statue is of King Alfred the Great, [849-899] England's FIRST KING.

    So, why is his statue here in High street, Winchester?

    In AD870 Anglo Saxon England was being besieged by Vikings, only Alfred's kingdom of Wessex had not fallen to the enemy. The enemy never succeeded, thus preventing England becoming little more than a outpost of the Viking empire.
    At the same time, Alfred founded the English monarchy and unified the country against a common enemy.
    He made Winchester his capital city. Alfred established a school in Winchester where people from all over England & Europe came to learn. He cleverly founded a network of defences so that no Saxon would be more than 20 miles from safety from invaders. The grid system of the streets in Winchester was developed during Alfred's reign. Well, it seems like he did lots of good.

    On the other side...........
    As a youth, Alfred was plagued by piles and obsessed with sex. As an adult he was a hypochondriac and wracked with guilt.

    Well, the good out-weighed the bad, and for the Millennium, a statue of the King was commissioned to mark the King's death.
    In 1901, this 2.5 times life size, 15 feet (4.57 m) high, and 5 tons statue was erected. Built on a base of Cornish granite, the King has his Cloak thrown over his shoulder, is grasping a cross-hilted sword, the symbol of Christianity which was to combat the power of heathen's. With a Saxon helmet on his head, his left hand rests upon a Saxon circular shield.

    On the base, is says AELFRED.

    It really is a very imposing Statue.

    The folk tale of the griddle-cakes - True or False
    During a battle with Danish invaders, Alfred was forced to travel anonymously and seek lodging in a peasant woman's hut. He was told to watch the cakes baking in the oven so they wouldn't be burn, at the start he did, then his mind began to wander. None too happy was the peasant woman who could smell the burning cakes. She gave the King a good scolding for his carelessness.
    Did she know he was the King or did his under-cover appearance trick her?

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    JANE AUSTEN'S HOUSE - 9

    by balhannah Updated Dec 21, 2013

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    Jane Austen's House

    Moving a few steps, I find Jane Austen House.

    Now, word of warning, DON'T EXPECT ANYTHING SPECTACULAR, as unless you notice the plaque on the wall, you can easily walk straight past.

    It is painted a Mustard colour, and is now a private residence, NO ENTRY ALLOWED.

    In 1817, when her health began to fail, she came to Winchester with her sister Cassandra to receive better medical care. Nothing helped, and she passed away on July 18, 1817, and is buried in Winchester Cathedral where I had just been and seen her grave.

    Look for the Blue heritage sign located above the main doorway.

    If you like Jane Austen, then the website is quite an interesting read!

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    INSIDE WINCHESTER CATHEDRAL - 7+

    by balhannah Updated Dec 21, 2013

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    Now I am going inside to see how spectacular the inside is!

    Well, I can tell you, I was overwhelmed when I saw the long, extremely high, Norman Nave! It was one of those stop still & wow moments!
    The Nave is the longest one in a Church in England. They say it's a highlight of the Cathedral, which I agree with, but I think there is more than one highlight in this Cathedral.

    I was more taken in with the High Altar and chancel. Behind the Altar, are three tiers high of statues standing admist delicate filigree. It was stunningly beautiful, and I could have stayed here for ages admiring and taking in this delicate piece of work.

    The choir stalls were beautifully carved too! In the dark, brown wood, there were Flower's, and many Animal's and Bird's including Dragon's, Owl's, Sheep, monkey's and little men.

    So, we will move on in the next tip............

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    THE OLD MILL - 12

    by balhannah Updated Dec 21, 2013

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    Old Mill on River Itchen @ Winchester

    On my River Itchen Canal walk, once I reached High Street, I decided to cross over and continue walking a little further.
    Lucky I did, as this is where the Old Mill is, and it spans the River Itchen. The original Mill was mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1086. In 1744, it was rebuilt and used as a Laundry. In 1928, it was gifted to the National Trust to be saved, and was used as a Youth Hostel for quite awhile.

    Now, after a 90 year period it is once again milling Flour by water power.
    The water mill can be seen working daily during the summer months, plus there are Flour making demonstrations taking place on Saturdays and Sundays.

    It's a chance to learn about milling, with working models, displays and video presentations and family activities in the School Holiday's.
    Baking/tasting days are advertised.

    Opening times:
    1st Jan - 18th Feb, Fri - Mon 11am-4pm
    19th Feb - 30th Nov, Mon-Sun 10am-5pm
    1st Dec - 23rd Dec, Mon-Sun 10.30am-4pm
    Last entry to the mill: Half hour before closing

    ADMISSION IN 2013..........
    ◾Adult: £3.90
    ◾Child: £1.95
    ◾Family: £9.75
    ◾Group adult: £3.65
    ◾Group child: £1.80

    Please check the website for more information

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  • balhannah's Profile Photo

    STONEHENGE

    by balhannah Updated Dec 21, 2013

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    We went to Stonehenge from Winchester, a distance of about 33kms.

    We just followed the tourist sign's, and when we saw a heap of traffic, we knew we were nearly there.
    We drove down the road, past the Stone's which were on our left. Past them, was a dirt car park [pay] but as we were British Heritage park member's, it was free for us.
    The Buses were nearest the road, and then the Car's, we had to go back quite a few rows to find a park.

    Next, the walk to the Admission booth's, passed through them quickly with the English Heritage pass.
    FREE audio guides are available.

    The Walk to the stones takes you under the busy road and then to the walkway around the stone's. You can't get close as they are fenced off.
    We knew what we were seeing as we were given an information sheet on entry.
    We walked around the circle and it looked just like we had seen it on Television shows. Both of us were of the same mind - If we hadn't got in for free, then we wouldn't have bothered!
    We have seen them so many times on Television, that they had lost the "wow!" factor.
    Back past the gift shop, to the Toilet's, and we were on the road once again

    Since our visit, there has been a change.

    # Advance Booking Required for Visits from 1 February 2014 #

    Advanced booking is required for visits from 1 February 2014 onwards, as entrance to Stonehenge will be managed through timed tickets. Advance booking is the only way to guarantee entry on the day and at the time of your choice.*
    This includes FREE visits by English Heritage and National Trust members.

    Limited availability of walk-up tickets for sale on the day. These can be purchased at the Stonehenge admissions tills only.

    ADMISSION PRICES UP TILL MARCH 2015
    Adults £14.90
    Child (5-15) £8.90
    Concession £13.40
    Family (2 adults, 3 children) £38.70

    I suggest looking at this link as for different months, there are different opening and closing times.
    http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/daysout/properties/stonehenge/prices-and-opening-times

    It usually opens at 9.30am, then depending on the daylight available in the months, it can close anytime from 5pm - 8 pm.

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  • planxty's Profile Photo

    What a great pub

    by planxty Updated Aug 24, 2013

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    Anyone visiting Winchester really should drop into the Wykeham Arms in Kingsgate. I pride myself on being a bit of a pub-goer, and this is simply one of the best pubs I have visited.

    The decor has to be seen to be believed. There are knick knacks and curios taking up every available inch of space (including many hundred tankards), and not one but two large log fires. Many of the tables are old-fashioned school desks, and there is a wonderful collection of walking canes hanging from the roof.

    There are several small rooms off the main two bars, which have been converted into dining rooms Although I was not there at meal time, i have read some very good reviews of the food there, and when I last visited ( a Wednesday in February) the tables were all fully booked for the evening.

    If you like quirky English pubs, this is a must.

    update August 2013.

    Having been "alerted" to this tip by VT member cdm7, i looked at it again and saw that I had written it in 2005, not long after I joined VT. As such, it is probably not of the standard I would have liked, lacks images and was noticeably lacking a website. It just goes to show how things have changed. Obviously, eight years ago, it did not have it's own website but does now, and I am happy to add it. This just shows how hard it is to keep VT tips up to date and I offer this with the proviso that it is very old information.

    There is a school of thought here on VT, which I do not decry, which says I should just delete this tip as being so far out of date as to be useless. I agree that my information is horribly out of date but I prefer to keep the tip here (as the premises obviously are) in the hope that readers will be encouraged to look for other members more recent tips to inform their decision as to whether they wish to visit here or not. Additionally, it serves, rather selfishly, as a memento to myself of a place I have been. I hope the reader takes the information in this spirit and will go on to find more recent information here on VT.

    In this vein, I offer the following additional information from my original rather sparse tip.

    Opening Hours
    Monday 11:00 - 23:00
    Tuesday 11:00 - 23:00
    Wednesday 11:00 - 23:00
    Thursday 11:00 - 23:00
    Friday 11:00 - 23:00
    Saturday 11:00 - 23:00
    Sunday 11:00 - 23:00

    The attached (somewhat belatedly) website will give you an idea of the menu.

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  • CDM7's Profile Photo

    Visit the Black Boy Inn.

    by CDM7 Written Jul 12, 2013

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    the pub
    4 more images

    This is a pub with a difference,and well worth a look inside.Stuffed animals,a variety of clocks and watches,blowlamps,old firebuckets,model aircraft,old books and many other items are on display.Most of the ales are locally brewed and have names such as Summer Lightening,Cheriton Pots and Ringwood Best.A small garden area is available.

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    Wolvesey Castle,Winchester

    by CDM7 Updated Jul 12, 2013

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    This is the remains of a fortified palace,which was the home of the Bishops of Winchester for over 1000 years.The original approach to the palace was through a gate in the city wall,this led into a courtyard which contained barns,stables,wool store and prison.
    The Woodmans gate (see photo five) was constructed by Henry of Bois between 1158 and 1171.Although built to appear strongly defended with a drawbridge it never had a military function.

    Free entry.
    Open March to November : 10- 1700 hrs.

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    • Historical Travel
    • Castles and Palaces

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    Visit the working watermill.

    by CDM7 Updated Jul 11, 2013

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    City Mill entrance.
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    A nice place for a visit,especially for children who can see the workings of a water wheel and other machinery that produces the power for grinding wheat for flour.
    Adults- £4.30, Children- £2.15 .Free to NT members.

    SEE VIDEO OF WATER WHEEL.

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    Alfred's round table

    by deeper_blue Updated Nov 1, 2012

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    See King Alfred's round table in Winchester castle hall. Built in the 13th century the great hall features stained glass windows, a judge's gallery, wrought steel iron gates, and the table mounted high on the wall. Open from 10am-5pm, all year round bar xmas day and boxing day.

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    Winchester Cathedral

    by deeper_blue Written Oct 28, 2012

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    The cathedral is the spiritual heart of the city, surrounded by lush green spaces and trees. Built in 1093, its spire can be seen from all over the city made from bright coloured limestone. The stain glass windows and bells are also impressive.

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    ABBEY GARDEN'S - 13

    by balhannah Written Nov 16, 2011

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    The Abbey Garden's are my last stop before heading to the Car parked by King Alfred's statue.

    The gardens are part of the site of St Mary’s Abbey which used to be one of the largest religious houses in Britain. There is a scented garden within the main Gardens complete with a sundial and a play area for children. The town house that overlooks the Gardens is the formal residence of the Mayor of Winchester.

    I am a keen gardener, and I thought them to be very nice.
    The flower beds were well maintained and in full bloom, there was plenty of seating, and rubbish bins that didn't look like a rubbish bin! In all, a very, clean and tidy park, where at lunchtime, many people were enjoying their Lunches.

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