30 April 2011

Hyde Abbey Garden

Hyde Abbey Garden, Winchester's Golden Jubilee project, was opened on 2nd June 2003 to mark the 50th anniversary of the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II. The garden is a to commemorate the last known resting place of King Alfred the Great, his Queen Ealswith and their son Edward the Elder. The 3 stone slabs mark the site of the 3 royal graves and the garden itself marks out the medieval church of Hyde Abbey which was founded in 1110 and dissolved and demolished in 1538. Hyde Abbey Garden leads onto the North Walls Park

29 April 2011

Royal Wedding

So this isn't really a photo from Winchester is it... but couldn't let this moment pass without incorporating it in my blog!

Infact Winchester does have a small claim to fame in all the Royal Wedding fever - according to the Guardian Newspaper Winchester "could justifiably claim to be the most patriotic town in the UK with 23 applications for Royal Wedding street parties".

Personally, along with the majority of people in the UK, I like having a royal family with all the history attached to it and I hope William & Kate will be very happy together.

28 April 2011

Pilgrim's Hall

In the Cathedral Close is the Pilgrims Hall. It was built around 1308 and is all that remains of a longer Medieval building, which was once the priory guest house that was used to house pilgrims to St Swithun's Shrine in Winchester. It is now part of Pilgrims School.

27 April 2011

O is for Obelisk

Just around the corner from the Westgate is a monument erected in 1759 commemorating the plague of 1666.

During the plague it became the custom for country folk from outside of the city to bring their produce to this point outside the Westgate and leave them there. They would then retire to a distance while the citizens of Winchester came out to collect the produce, leaving their money in payment in a large bowl of vinegar in order to disinfect it. When they had gone back into the city through the Westgate the farmers and countrymen would come back and fish out the coins with pincers avoiding any possible infection.
For more 'O' related posts see ABC Wednesday

26 April 2011

Bishop Morley College

Bishop Morley College was built in 1672 as a charitable institution for widows of the clergy. It stands on the site of the monastery of St. Grimbald, founded in 898 by King Alfred.The property was rebuilt and extended in 1879/80.

25 April 2011


Within the cathedral there are numerous military memorials throughout. Here is one in particular to the men of the 4th Battalion of the Rifle Brigade who died in the campaign in Afghanistan in the 1870s.

24 April 2011

Willow Tree

The Willow Tree pub is almost on an island with its picturesque rear garden in a triangular shape divided by 2 streams of the Itchen River. The pub originally belonged to the Winchester Brewery (sadly no more) and is now owned by Greene King. Recently under new management, on their website they refer to themselves as a Riverside Restaurant and Wine Bar and appear to be focusing more on food, their facebook page has some rave reviews of their steaks! Last year they placed a giant St George's flag covering the entire front of the pub in honour of England competing in the football World Cup (they probably shouldn't have bothered..!)

23 April 2011

Bench with dog

In the Dean Garnier Garden at the Cathedral I spotted this stone bench with a little stone dog underneath.

** I am on holiday now for a week so I have scheduled some photos whilst away - sorry if I don't respond to any comments straightaway - thanks for stopping by **

22 April 2011

Pilgrim's Way

Here outside St John's Church a stone signs marks part of the Pilgrim's Way. This is an ancient trackway that runs across southern England from Winchester in the west to Canterbury in the east. The trackway is 120 miles (192 km) in length. The historic route was taken by pilgrims from Winchester to the shrine of Thomas Becket in Canterbury. The route iself follows a pre-existing ancient trackway probably in existence since the stone age.

** I am on holiday now for a week so I have scheduled some photos whilst away - sorry if I don't respond to any comments straightaway - thanks for stopping by **

21 April 2011

Dean Garnier Garden

Thomas Garnier was Dean of Winchester from 1840-1872.  He was passionate about plants and was a founding member of the Hampshire Horticultural Society and many of the trees that surround the Cathedral were planted by him. A small peaceful garden by the cathedral was created in 1995 in his memory.

** I am on holiday now for a week so I have scheduled some photos whilst away - sorry if I don't respond to any comments straightaway - thanks for stopping by **

20 April 2011

View from St Catherines Hill

This is a view of Winchester from St Catherine's Hill. You can see a glimpse of the Itchen River in the bottom right, and the Cathedral and roof of the Guildhall

** I am on holiday now for a week so I have scheduled some photos whilst away - sorry if I don't respond to any comments straightaway - thanks for stopping by **

19 April 2011


In parts of the ceiling of the Cathedral are these carvings, known as 'bosses'. There are well over 1000 of them. They were added in about 1506 by Bishop Fox. The bosses in this photo are in the quire, they are wooden and are bolted to the roof covering smaller less elaborate bosses that were already there. Some are coats of arms, some heraldic andothers have biblical significance

** I am on holiday now for a week so have scheduled some photos whilst away - sorry if I don't respond to any comments straightaway - thanks for stopping by **

18 April 2011

Wickham House

It looks rather austere from this photo, this is Wickham House in St Thomas Street. It was built in the 18th century some time after 1750. Like other large houses in the street it is built almost directly onto the street. The blank window spaces are probably the result of the window tax of 1696 whereby properties were taxed on the number of windows they had, this was repealed in 1851. The Wickham in question is the Wickham family who have a memorial in the Cathedral. Wickham House has, since 1953, been used by business firms, currently it's the home of a solicitors.

** I am on holiday now for a week (for my nearest location see Llandudno Daily Pictures) so have scheduled some photos whilst away - sorry if I don't respond to any comments straighaway - thanks for stopping by **

17 April 2011


Within the Cathedral is the Holy Sepulchre Chapel, and on its walls are these remarkable 12th century wall paintings showing the Deposition and Entombment of Christ. They date from about 1170 but were only discovered in 1963 during conservation work on another painting that had been on top.

16 April 2011

How far?

On the wall of the Guildhall are the distances from Winchester to a number of cities. Many people commute by train from Winchester to London and for 1 and a half years I commuted myself before my job moved down this way - 135 miles round trip by car each day! I now work closer to Southampton which you can see is a civilised 12 miles away. Both Southampton and Portsmouth are port cities, Southampton being more for container ships and cruise liners whereas Portsmouth is the Navy (for now..) and a few ferries, both cities were damaged quite extensively during WW2 although there are a few old buildings still remaining. Salisbury in Wiltshire is another beautiful cathedral city, not too dissimilar from Winchester.

15 April 2011


In the Cathedral Close is this 1966 painted bronze sculpture by Dame Barbara Hepworth called Construction Crucifix a Homage to Mondrian. The red symbolizes the sun, while the white stands for the moon. The yellow circle stands for the head of Christ and, perhaps, a halo.

14 April 2011


Opposite the Friarsgate multi storey car park is the St Clements Doctors practice, it's not beautiful but is useful. This area is due for redevelopment at some point.

13 April 2011

M is for Mayor

The Guildhall has recently been refurbished and had an open day to let members of the public see it all. Here is the Mayor's Parlour, an oak panelled room with photos of some of the Mayor's of Winchester. It's now hired out for meetings, weddings etc.

Winchester's current Mayor is Councillor Richard Izard. He is the 811th Mayor of Winchester, the Office of Mayor of Winchester being one of the oldest mayoralties in England, dating back to the period when the City was the national capital. By tradition, the Mayor of Winchester stands second only to the Lord Mayor of London in precedence of civic heads.

For more M Themed posts see abc wednesday

12 April 2011


Within the choir of the cathedral is a wooden eagle lectern dating from the 17th century.

11 April 2011


I already have a post of the Westgate, but from the other side. This photo is looking down towards the High Street.

A close up shows that you can see almost all the High Street through the arch, the Horse & Rider Statue, The Town Clock, the green coloured roof of the Guildhall and St Giles Hill in the background. The Westgate is now a museum and due to recent cuts the council were planning to close it entirely, fortunately they have agreed to now open it on weekends.

10 April 2011


In the Cathedral there are numerous memorials in the walls and floors to various people connected to Winchester. I am not into fishing myself but here is a memorial to angler Francis Francis who died in 1886. He was angling editor to The Field, and his most famous work was "A Book on Angling" published 1867. He also played an important part in introducing English trout to the rivers of Tasmania and New Zealand. He apparently used to regularly frequent the Royal Winchester Hotel with other fly fishers of the River Itchen.

A Sum of £67 2s 6d was raised in 1887 by his close angling friends and a memorial plaque was erected in the Cathedral where it remains in place to remind the fishing fraternity of his contribution to their sport.

09 April 2011

The Wykeham Arms

The Wykeham Arms is probably the most well known pub in Winchester. It's a 18th century coaching inn, situated between the Cathedral and the College and is named after William of Wykeham, the 14th century Bishop who founded the Winchester College. It is popular with both locals and tourists alike and has a very strong affinity with the College having some of its old desks complete with inkwells as tables. The pub serves food and offers Bed & Breakfast. I like the place, but it can get very crowded at times, which I guess is sign of its popularity.

08 April 2011


Within the cathedral there there are a number of carvings, monuments and memorials. This one of the chap with his chess board particularly caught my eye. My son was once chess champion of his school, the chess tournament went on so long that they eventually ran out of time and so decided the result of the game by rock-paper-scissors!

07 April 2011


Around Winchester are the boarding houses of Winchester College where the boys who attend the college live. There are ten boarding Houses and each is a self-contained community where the boys eat, sleep and spend their time when not in lessons. Here in Kingsgate Street is Moberly's which is one of the oldest boarding houses. It accommodates 60 boys and was founded by The Revd Harry Moberly, the first Housemaster (1860-1880). It is formally known as Moberly's but informally as Toye's, after the second Housemaster Jack Toye.

As these are where the boys live they aren't open to the public, but I have been to a number of the boarding houses of Eton where the boys get bigger rooms the older they get, and they weren't bad at all.

06 April 2011

L is for Little Minster Street

Just behind the Cathedral Close wall is Little Minster Street. There is a pretty 17th century house on the corner here, and in the background the spire of the former church of St Thomas and St Clements in Southgate Street, used as the Hampshire Records Office until 1993 and now used by Hampshire County Council.

For more 'L' themed posts see ABC Wednesday

05 April 2011

Steel Drums

Particularly on a weekend you will always find buskers and musicians in the High Street. They range from a tramp with a bongo drum, university students trying to raise a bit of extra cash to a whole steel band this weekend. They were really very good.

04 April 2011


The Arms of the City of Winchester depict 5 castles and 2 lions as shown here on the gate to the Mayor's Residence. The 5 castles are thought to possibly reflect the original 5 city gates of Winchester, there are now only 2 city gates left, Westgate and Kingsgate. These arms appear in a number of places in Winchester, not least my Council Tax bill as they're part of of the Winchester City Council logo

03 April 2011

Canoe Event

Yesterday canoeists from all over the country descended on North Walls Park to take part in the Winchester and and District Canoe Club, Novice and Open Short course Slalom Competition. There appeared to be all ages taking part, and the photo above shows children's canoes that were for sale. I think it could be quite fun - apart from the falling in bit!

02 April 2011


Friarsgate - sounds nice doesn't it, makes you think perhaps of a church or an ancient city gate? Or perhaps even a 1960s car park. Winchester is not all cathedrals, history and monuments, we have our fair share of naff architecture and ugly buildings. This area is due to be redeveloped at some point.

01 April 2011

Stained Glass Window

One of the first things you see on entering the Cathedral is the beautiful stained glass window. On closer inspection of the glass you notice that the stained glass does not form any particular picture, the windows although very pretty just appear to be a mosaic of colours

There is a reason for this - The original panes were destroyed by Oliver Cromwell's forces following the English Civil War in 1642, broken with the bones of old kings as mentioned in another post! The broken glass was kept though and in 1660 after the restoration of the monarchy the stained glass was re-assembled randomly, as we see here today.