Newport Things to Do
Quay Arts Centre
Back in the day when I attended college here, the quay was just run down and polluted
with lots of boat workshops and garages, but now that has all changed.
The Quay Arts Centre is the Isle of Wight’s leading art gallery and venue for live arts events.
It is situated in a converted 19th Century brewery warehouse complex
pleasantly located at the head of the River Medina in the centre of Newport.
Facilities at the complex include 3 galleries, a 134 capacity theatre,
a Crafts Council-listed gallery shop, a popular licensed arts café with
a reputation for serving some of the best home-cooked vegetarian
food on the Island and numerous workshop spaces and meeting rooms.
Free admission to all galleries.
A fine Roman villa.
One of the major attractions in the very pleasant town of Newport is the Roman villa. If, like me, you are walking, you could be forgiven for thinking that the signposts are mistaken as they lead you through a very quiet residential area, which could be a dormitory suburb of any Southern English town (the photo gives some idea). Bear with it, however, and you will be lead to a very fine Roman villa.
The Romans play quite a significant part in the history of the Isle of Wight, and this is a great example of some of the archaeology thus far discovered. The residential nature of the site is actually not as far-fetched as it might seem, as the site only came to light in 1926, when a local resident was digging foundations for a new garage!
The site, unusually for such a place in Britain, is still in private hands, although the owners have obviously taken pains to ensure a very pleasant visitor experience.
It is not, by any means, the best Roman villa I have visited, but I suppose some Roman villas were grander than others to begin with. It has an excellently preserved hypocaust (central heating system) and the remains of the attendant bath-house.
Outside the enclosed remains is a wonderful Roman herb garden (see photo) which I was enchanted by. If you have children with you, they are well catered for with an activity room where they can play educational games.
The site is open seven days a week during July and August but closed Sunday in April, May, June, September and October - closed in winter. Admission is £2:50 for adults or a family ticket at £7 and the staff are very helpful. Wheelchair accessible.Related to:
- Historical Travel
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