What to See in England
By Gordon Home

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Savernake Forest

=How to get there.=–Train from Paddington. Great Western Railway. =Nearest Station.=–Savernake. =Distance from London.=–70 miles. =Average Time.=–Varies between 2 to 3 hours.

                     1st       2nd        3rd
=Fares.=–Single  11s. 8d.   7s.  4d.   5s. 10d.
          Return  20s. 6d.  12s. 10d.  11s.  8d.

=Accommodation Obtainable.=–"Forest Hotel” (near railway station), “Ailesbury Arms Hotel,” etc., in Marlborough. =Alternative Route.=–Train from Waterloo. L. and S.W. Railway.

Savernake is said to be the only forest in England possessed by a subject. It occupies a piece of country 16 miles in circumference, is entirely open to all, and the Marquess of Ailesbury also allows Savernake Forest House to be seen by strangers when the family are absent. At Savernake Station one is brought within sight of the forest, and entering it at this point one is able to enjoy a lovely walk of 6 or 7 miles, which brings one out close to Marlborough Station, with the town on the further side of the railway. The forest is specially famous for its glorious avenue of beech 4 miles in length, and there is little doubt that there is no finer in the kingdom.

If one enters through the park gates, near Savernake Station, the house (formerly known as Tottenham House) lies on the right, and in the opposite direction one may notice, at the end of a perspective formed by great masses of elms and beeches, the column erected in 1781 by the first Earl of Ailesbury (the marquisate was not created until 1821), commemorating the recovery of George III. and other circumstances.

If one crosses the avenue and bears off to the right across the turf the church of St. Catherine will soon appear in sight. It is a very richly ornamented structure, and was built by a former Marchioness of Ailesbury, in memory of her mother the Countess of Pembroke. Returning to the avenue, one may continue down it for about 3 miles to the “eight walks,” where an opening in the ranks of the stately trees reveals a number of grassy glades running off to the chief points of the compass. The walk going off to the south-west leads to the King’s Oak, a gigantic tree whose hollow trunk is 24 feet in circumference. This oak is surrounded by a number of grand old trees, their bold outlines enriched with velvety moss. On an autumn afternoon, when the forest is a blaze of crimson and yellow, this spot is seen at its loveliest–the long shadows and the golden sunlight giving the scene a painted, almost too brilliant effect.

[Illustration: E.H. Roberts. THE AVENUE IN SAVERNAKE FOREST.]


Preface  •  Ham House and Petersham  •  Walton-On-Thames (scold’s Bridle)  •  Harrow  •  Holwood House, Keston  •  Chigwell, Essex  •  Waltham Abbey and Cross  •  Downe  •  Epsom: Its Races and Its Salts  •  Epping Forest  •  Hampton Court  •  Rye House, Broxbourne  •  Hatfield House, Herts  •  Runnymead, the Signing of Magna Charta  •  The Oldest Brass in England  •  St. Albans  •  Stoke Poges Church, Bucks  •  Windsor  •  Jordans and William Penn  •  Knole House and Sevenoaks  •  Greenstead Church  •  Chalfont St. Giles  •  Westerham  •  Guildford, Surrey  •  Gad’s Hill  •  Ightham Mote, Kent  •  Penshurst  •  St. Michael’s Mount and Marazion  •  Rochester Cathedral  •  Tunbridge Wells  •  The Quintain Post At Offham and Malling Abbey  •  Eversley  •  Farnham, Surrey  •  Hindhead, Surrey  •  Shottermill  •  Penn’s Chapel At Thakeham, Sussex  •  Chawton the Home of Jane Austen  •  Selborne  •  Elstow  •  Lewes, Sussex  •  Bodiam Castle, Sussex  •  Colchester, Essex  •  Layer Marney  •  Battle Abbey  •  Cambridge  •  Arundel Castle  •  Olney, Bucks  •  Wantage and the Country of Alfred the Great  •  Canterbury and Its Cathedral  •  Reculvers  •  Oxford  •  Midhurst  •  Pevensey Castle  •  Savernake Forest  •  Ely Cathedral  •  St. Ives, Huntingdonshire  •  Winchelsea and Rye  •  Blenheim Palace  •  Peterborough Cathedral and Crowland  •  Peterborough  •  Southampton  •  Helmingham Hall  •  Stonehenge, Wiltshire  •  Netley Abbey  •  Salisbury and Its Cathedral  •  Sandwich, Kent  •  New Forest, Hampshire  •  Osborne House  •  Carisbrooke Castle  •  Lutterworth  •  Compton Wynyates  •  Kenilworth Castle  •  Belvoir Castle  •  Bath  •  Boston and the Pilgrim Fathers  •  Warwick  •  Gloucester and Its Cathedral  •  Norfolk Broads  •  Norwich Cathedral  •  Lichfield  •  Sherborne and Its Abbey Church  •  Newark  •  Wells and Its Cathedral  •  Stratford-On-Avon  •  Burnham Thorpe, Norfolk  •  Lulworth Cove, Dorsetshire  •  Corfe Castle  •  Lincoln and Its Cathedral  •  Somerset, the Birthplace of Tennyson  •  Glastonbury Abbey  •  Walsingham, Norfolk  •  Cheddar Caves, Cheddar, Somerset  •  Newstead Abbey  •  The Wessex of Thomas Hardy’s Romances  •  Tintern Abbey  •  Chesterfield, Derbyshire  •  Dukeries  •  Haddon Hall, Derbyshire  •  The Isle of Athelney, and Sedgemoor  •  Raglan Castle  •  Dovedale  •  Wellington and the Wrekin, Shropshire  •  Wroxeter and the Roman City of Uriconium, Salop  •  Buildwas Abbey, Shropshire  •  Ludlow and Its Castle  •  Shrewsbury  •  Buxton and the Peak District  •  Tewkesbury  •  Exeter and Its Cathedral  •  Market Drayton, Salop  •  Chester  •  Exmoor  •  Knutsford  •  Torr Steps On the Barle, Somerset  •  Cleeve Abbey, Somerset  •  Hawarden  •  York Minster  •  Coxwold, Yorkshire  •  Llangollen and Valle Crucis Abbey  •  Knaresborough, Dripping Well  •  Fountains Abbey  •  Ripon Cathedral  •  Dartmoor  •  Haworth  •  Rievaulx Abbey  •  Brixham, Devon  •  Conway Castle  •  The Doone Valley, Exmoor  •  Llandovery, South Wales  •  Dartmouth, Devon  •  Richmond, Yorkshire  •  Tintagel  •  Whitby  •  Carnarvon Castle  •  Plymouth  •  Durham and Its Cathedral  •  Raby Castle, Durham  •  Snowdon  •  Harlech Castle  •  Grasmere and Rydal Mount  •  The Lake District  •  St. Davids Cathedral  •  Furness Abbey, Lancashire  •  Monkwearmouth, Near Jarrow  •  The Isle of Man  •  Brantwood  •  Fowey  •  Hexham and Hadrian’s Wall  •  The Lake District  •  Keswick  •  Alnwick Castle  •  Lanercost Priory, Cumberland  •  Lanercost Priory and Stepping-Stones.]  •  St. Ives, Cornwall  •  Bamborough Castle, Northumberland

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What to see in England;: A guide to places of historic interest, natural beauty or literary association,
By Gordon Home
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