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History & Heritage

Somerset Historic Treasures

Since early man laid a timber walkway across the moors of central Somerset, his descendants have been leaving fascinating reminders of their activities in the County from grand abbeys to humble peat huts. As the operational base for Alfred the Great, when he successfully repelled the Vikings, Somerset has a wealth of historic treasures tracing a proud past and has the second highest number of Listed buildings outside London.
No matter which period you pick, we can supply plenty of places that inform the visitor of the part played by our people in the important events of the age whether it is Roman occupation, Civil War or Industrial Revolution. We even have a claim to history that is shrouded in myth with talk of King Arthur and Avalon. No visit to the County would be complete for historians without a trip to Bath or Glastonbury.
For many, History is punctuated by battles and the County has connections with some of the most notorious. The last battle fought on English soil – the Battle of Sedgemoor – was at Westonzoyland where a model of the action can be found in St Mary’s Church. Our county town, Taunton, witnessed Judge Jeffreys 'Bloody Assize' in the aftermath and there is an exhibition on the Pitchfork Rebellion in Somerset Museum. Nearby Wellington gave its name to the Duke who triumphed at Waterloo and Bridgwater is the birth place of this country’s most successful admiral – Admiral Blake. More recently, in the Second World War, the Mendip Hills were used to simulate Bristol in order to draw enemy fire away from the City. Other war time paraphernalia includes pill boxes built along the Taunton Stop Line intended to defend us against invasion. Defences in the form of castles can be found at Taunton, Dunster, Farliegh Hungerford and Nunney.

History & Heritage

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