I thought that we could go on a trip today, even though the weather is a bit murky!
I like to travel by train and chose to investigate a nearby market town with the remains of a castle - Farnham. It's one of those awkward places to reach involving a couple of trains and a walk, it would be much easier to drive, but where's the fun in that!
Farnham, given its name by the Anglo-Saxons meaning ferns or bracken and water meadows, is a pretty Georgian market town in Surrey with cobbled streets. Overlooking the town is the motte and 'shell keep' of the12th Century Castle built by Henry de Blois, Bishop of Winchester and brother of King Stephen. The town is mid way between London and Winchester so the Castle was built as a stopover for the Bishop journeying between the two cities. Following the Civil War, Charles I also stayed at nearby Culver Hall on his way to London for his trial and subsequent execution. Nowadays, after 900 years of history, the Castle is used as a Conference centre and wedding venue but you can still visit the grounds and exhibition space.
|Looking over the Conference centre to the town.|
|This is the Conference centre.|
Farnham town is only a short walk from the Castle, all downhill!! There are all sorts of independent shops and cafes and as of 2013, it is known for being England's Town of Craft. The University of the Creative Arts has a great reputation, offering a wide range of arts courses and Farnham Maltings is an arts centre which has many exhibitions during the year. There is even a sculpture park nearby but I haven't been there yet!
The Farnham Town website is well structured and gives lots of information.
I see that there are a number of notable people associated with the Town:
Jonathan Swift, Edward Lutyens, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Florence Nightingale, William Cobbett and Jonny Wilkinson to name but a few - I'll leave you to look at the website to find out more! Apparently, J.M. Barrie wrote Peter Pan whilst staying at Black Lake Cottage in Tilford a village nearby.
There's a guide and town trail to follow to get the most out of your visit.
I will have to go back again and explore now that I am blogging, no doubt there are other hidden nooks and crannies to photograph.
Cheerio for now.