Discover Britain

February/March 2022

Celebrating the best of our nation, every issue of Discover Britain is packed with features from history to travel. Read about the events that changed history, as well as British traditions and their origins, or be inspired for your next trip with great ideas for where to go and what to see. Whether you’re planning a weekend city break or an escape to the countryside, Discover Britain is your essential guide to getting the most out of your stay.

United Kingdom
Chelsea Magazine
6 Issues

in this issue

1 min

You don’t need to have been born in a place – or even visited it before – for it to feel like home. In fact, it is easy even during a short break somewhere to start fantasising about the possibility of moving there for good. It’s nice to know that this feeling happens to the best of us. Queen Victoria became so enamoured by her first “quite beautiful” glimpse of Edinburgh in 1840 that she returned to Scotland on a regular basis, more than almost any other British monarch, and even made a home in Balmoral on the River Dee amid the natural splendour of the Cairngorms National Park. Natalie Marchant does a fantastic job of charting that royal Caledonian love affair on page 12. Do you have a similar attachment to…

1 min

Towering contribution I received a lovely surprise as I was reading your December issue and came upon the name of my small state and the tower in Newport [Beyond Shakespeare, Issue 224]. I have seen it many times. For a long time, it was attributed to Vikings and its use was a mystery. You can find a photo of it if you search for “Viking tower Newport”. On my first visit to England in 1973, I treated myself to a watercolour of Warwick Castle which hangs in my home to this day. The town to the north of us is named Warwick, and there are other English place names as well, Portsmouth and Bristol to name two, and I am proud to make my home in another one. I read your magazine from cover…

3 min
wish you were here...

BAMBURGH, NORTHUMBERLAND Castle landscape at sunrise named among the year’s best historic photographs The annual Historic Photographer of the Year competition is not solely restricted to British subjects, yet it counts Historic England among its official partners, so tends to have a strong showing from these shores. This year’s overall winner was Steve Liddiard for a dramatic shot of Whiteford Point Lighthouse in south Wales, yet we particularly loved Scott Antcliffe’s stunning capture of Bamburgh Castle at sunrise which was shortlisted in the “Where History Happened” category. The judging panel included broadcaster and historian Dan Snow. “It was once again a pleasure and a privilege to be able to sift through the outstanding images from this year’s entrants,” he said. “It was perhaps all the more poignant and redolent for the fact that…

9 min
queen victoria’s scotland

Queen Victoria’s first sighting of Scotland came in 1842: “The impression Edinburgh has made upon us is very great” Scotland held a special place in Queen Victoria’s heart; from the moment she first set eyes on the country, and especially after the death of her beloved Albert, it became the place to which she could escape. Having been crowned queen in 1837, Victoria first visited Scotland five years later – becoming only the second reigning British monarch to do so in nearly two centuries. Her first sighting of the country was Edinburgh after arriving by ship at Leith on 1 September 1842; she was captivated by the city romanticised in the novels of Sir Walter Scott. “The impression Edinburgh has made upon us is very great; it is quite beautiful, totally unlike…

8 min
gardens of wiltshire

Wiltshire is one of Britain’s most naturally beautiful counties, stretching itself between the tranquil hills of the North Wessex Downs and the wilder northern edge of Cranborne Chase. In between lies the Salisbury Plains, that misty crucible of English mythology, home to the chalky figure of the Westbury White Horse and the monumental standing stones of Stonehenge and Avebury. With such rich delights to explore in the surrounding landscape, Wiltshire residents would have been forgiven for not wasting time tending to their own backyards. However, the county boasts a greater cluster of lush, manicured gardens than almost anywhere else in Britain or even the world. One of the oldest developments still open to the public is Abbey House Gardens, which is set in the hilltop town of Malmesbury on the cusp…

2 min
my britain

“My early years were spent living in a tent with my family on the Isle of Iona” Ann Kenrick OBE Master of the Charterhouse, London I became the first female Master of the Charterhouse in 2017. Historically, the Master would have overseen the pastoral care of the Brothers (the residents of the almshouse), while a bursar was in charge of finances. The modern-day role combines the two, meaning I am both Master and CEO of the 17th-century charity. The Charterhouse opened to the public for the first time that year. I wanted everyone to be able to visit and learn the incredible history of our buildings, which began life as a monastery and a burial ground for Black Death victims, and then became a Tudor mansion, all before the almshouse was founded in 1611. Queen…