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Modern tourist attractions such as the London Eye and Cornwall’s £86 million Eden Project rank alongside historic sites including Stonehenge among the “Seven Wonders of Britain”, according to a survey published today.

The British equivalent to the original Seven Wonders of the World span a 4,000-year period from prehistoric Stonehenge in Wiltshire to the 450ft wheel which was erected on the South Bank of the River Thames to mark the millennium.

The remaining four attractions on the list were Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament, York Minster, Windsor Castle and Hadrian’s Wall.

More than 2,500 adults from across Britain took part in the survey, which was commissioned by the Yellow Pages telephone directory.

A parallel survey of teenagers aged between 13 and 17 also recognised traditional attractions but listed Staffordshire theme park Alton Towers as one of their favourites.

Both adults and teenagers agreed on their choice for the Eighth Wonder of Britain – defined as a culturally significant site that is not currently regarded as a tourist attraction – by selecting the Angel of the North, Antony Gormley’s giant sculpture on the outskirts of Gateshead.

Alan Britten, English Tourism Council chairman, said: “It’s the mixture of old and new attractions that is a source of fascination for overseas tourists and a source of pride among the people who live here.

“The Yellow Pages survey reflects our own experience of the endless allure of these ‘must-see’ sites. They are the crown jewels of our tourist attractions.”

John Condron, chief executive of Yell, publisher of Yellow Pages, said: “We hope this timely survey encourages people to get out and explore or rediscover the ‘Wonders’ in their own regions.”

 
The ‘seven wonders of Britain’


The London Eye and Eden Project rank alongside historic sites such as Stonehenge among the ‘seven wonders of Britain’, according to a survey commissioned by Yellow Pages. Here, in no particular order, are the seven winners.
 
Big Ben Big Ben, London
Photo: Peter Jordan, PA
 
Hadrian's Wall Hadrian’s Wall, Northumberland
Photo: John Giles, PA
More arts news
 
Eden Project Eden Project, Cornwall
Photo: Barry Batchelor, PA
 
London Eye London Eye
Photo: Martin Argles, Guardian
 
Windsor Castle Windsor Castle, Berkshire
Photo: Tim Ockenden, PA
 
Stonehenge Stonehenge, Wiltshire
Photo: Sean Smith, Guardian
 
York Minster York Minster, Yorkshire
Photo: John Giles, PA
 
The ‘eighth wonder of Britain’


Angel of the North Angel of the North
Antony Gormley’s giant sculpture on the outskirts of Gateshead, the winner among ‘culturally significant sites not currently regarded as tourist attractions’.
Photo: Owen Humphreys, PA


Good choice!
The Best Tours in British History
HisTOURies UK – Private Guided Tours

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As a Christian symbol, it seems appropriate that its resurrection took place in time for Easter.  Glastonbury’s Holy Thorn tree began to show new buds this week, three months after it was savagely cut down by vandals.
According to legend, Joseph of Arimathea – who some say was Jesus’s great-uncle – travelled to Wearyall Hill after the Crucifixion and stuck a wooden staff belonging to Jesus into the ground before he went to sleep.

When he awoke, the tale goes, the staff had sprouted into a thorn tree, which became a shrine for Christians across Europe.

Every year, the sacred tree flowered once at Christmas and once at Easter, until just before Christmas last year when it was vandalised, leaving the community of the small Somerset town fearing it was dead.

But that was before the council enlisted the help of Peter Frearson, a self-titled pagan wizard who happens to run his own horticultural business.

Mr Frearson said: ‘Well-meaning but uninformed people were putting things like marmalade on the wounds. ‘Mead, an alcoholic drink made from honey, was also popular, as well as various ales and Guinness on one occasion.

‘There’s also been a few ribbons tied round it, as well as lots of people holding hands around it, and circles of people projecting positive energy.’

Sacred: Well-wishers visit the tree in Glastonbury, SomersetSacred: Well-wishers visit the tree in Glastonbury, Somerset

But Mr Frearson, nicknamed the Garden Wizard, had other ideas to ensure the tree’s revival.

He said: ‘We applied a dressing of pine resin and beeswax to stop further moisture and rain getting in, keep out bacteria and fungus, and applied nutrients.

‘We covered it in horticultural fleece, then bubble wrap, then more fleece.
‘Soon after we replaced the bubble wrap with hessian.

‘We mulched around the base of the tree with well-rotted wood chips to keep the moisture off the ground, and we’ve also driven spikes into the ground and filled the holes with compost and bonemeal, and we’ll do it again soon.’

Glastonbury’s mayor John Coles said the display of new buds on the tree was ‘wonderful news for the town’.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1370056/Resurrection-Holy-Thorn-Tree-Glastonburys-vandalised-shrine-comes-life.html#ixzz1Hh02v1NE

Visit the ;Holy Thorn’ on a Glastonbury (King Arthure Country) guided sightseeing tour.

Glastonbury Tour Guide
HisTOURies UK – The Best Tours on Ancient Britain

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The Festival returns in 2011 with a packed programme of theatre, dance, circus, film, music and spoken word in locations around the historic city.

On the Festival’s opening night the sky becomes a stage in a performance by world famous Argentine company Voalà.The programme also includes a new music commission, WhereTwo Worlds Touch; outdoor performances of classic Shakespeare;and a performance by Jasmin Vardimon Company.

Read Salisbury International Arts Festival Brochure 2011 – Download

This year’s programme will reflect a focus on the themes of China, Dance and Air, and events will take place across the region in locations as diverse as Salisbury Cathedral, Old Wardour Castle and Stonehenge.

Background to Salisbury Festival
The Festival blazed into life in July 1973. Since then, over a million people have enjoyed outstanding performances of theatre, dance, film and every kind of music, plus literary events and the visual arts. From mid-May to early June each year, the beautiful historic city of Salisbury is transformed as people flock to the Festival, enjoying both ticketed events and free performances

If you are in the UK during May and June this year why not come and stay in Salisbury during this wonderful event.  Even take a tour to Stonehenge ?

http://www.salisburyfestival.co.uk/

Stonehenge and Salisbury Tour Guide
HisTOURies UK – The Best Tours in Wessex

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Thousands of files with details of UFO sightings and an “alien abduction” in London have been released for the first time by the Ministry Of Defence.
Over the last fifty years thousands of people across Wiltshire have recorded seeing strange sights in the skies – and in many cases the same pulsing lights hovering above one town have been witnessed by hundreds of people.

The previously classified files contain over 8,500 pages that reveal the phenomenon has been discussed at the highest levels of governments worldwide and in 1979 the House of Lords held Parliament’s only ever full debate on the subject.

The files, which also contain pictures, described how for a few hours in 1967 a War Of The Worlds-style incident was treated as a potentially real alien invasion of the UK.

Another startling revelation said in the months before the September 11 attacks, 15 unidentified aircrafts were detected on radar approaching the UK and one was detected on the actual day.

Other revelations from the 35 files include the story of a family capturing on film flashing red and white lights zig-zagging their way through the sky during the early hours in 2003.

You can see from the files that I wasn’t the only one interested in the subject, with the phenomenon discussed at the highest level of government right across the globe

Dr David Clarke – author and senior lecturer in journalism at Sheffield Hallam University

Police officers, including a helicopter team, also witnessed the 20 to 30 lights over Bromley, Kent and reported the incident. Radar checks revealed nothing unusual.

The documents read: “A policeman sent to investigate confirmed the sighting. Objects were moving faster than any man-made aircraft.”

In another case a man told the MoD he believed he had been beamed up by an alien craft from his home in Barnes, south west London.

He described having a glass of milk in his garden on a night in October 1998 and “after a few moments I heard a distant roar of engines getting louder and louder.”

The man said he was terrified as a huge “cigar-shaped vehicle” appeared over his house and said it felt like he had gained a whole hour.

A Naional Achives photo

A doughnut-shaped UFO photographed by a retired RAF officer in Sri Lanka.

 “I am now beginning to wonder if I was abducted,” he told the MoD, which wrote back to him saying the clocks had gone back the night before.

The phenomenon of extra-terrestrials has fascinated people for centuries and the files also detail in full the Freedom of Information (FOI) requests and letters from “persistent enquirers” that led to the MoD opening up its files for the first time in history.

Dr David Clarke, author of the book The UFO Files, said since the introduction of the FOI act questions on UFOs were the top three most popular FOI requests received by the MoD.

“You can see from the files that I wasn’t the only one interested in the subject, with the phenomenon discussed at the highest level of government right across the globe.”

A Naional Achives photo

A photo among the 35 files of a sketch of UFO in South Wales.

Another incident detailed is of six small “flying saucers” in a perfect line sighted in southern England.

An investigation found it to be a ‘rag-day’ hoax by engineering students from Farnborough Technical College.

In 1978, the RAF was bombarded with claims that a UFO was zipping across the sky as witnesses described a mystery orange cigar-shaped object with lights covering its base and a white cockpit.

An investigation revealed the sightings coincided with the re-entry of space debris into the Earth’s atmosphere.

The files contain pages of UFO sightings and reports, colour photographs and drawings, RAF investigations, unusual radar detections, parliamentary briefings and – for the first time – documents on the government’s policy on UFOs

Strange Wiltshire Over the last fifty years thousands of people across Wiltshire have recorded seeing strange sights in the skies – and in many cases the same pulsing lights hovering above one town have been witnessed by hundreds of people.

Tour guides at Histouries UK are looking forward to another good crop circle season here in Wilsthire.  2010 saw a record year, what will 2001 bring ?  We have taken 1000’s of people to 100’s of crop cicle formations in the Wessex area.  We know where they are and when they appear.  Follow this blog and our tweets for daily crop circle updates.

Links:
http://www.visitwiltshire.co.uk/site/things-to-do/attractions/crop-circles
http://www.bbc.co.uk/wiltshire/moonraking/spooky_ufo.shtml
http://www.ufo-warminster.co.uk/books/books_direct.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warminster
http://www.wccsg.com/

Crop Circle Tour Guide
HisTOURies UK – The Best Spooky Tours in Wiltshire

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Tickets
Make sure you’re in the front row – sign up now for London 2012 ticketing news and information.

Tickets for the London 2012 Olympic Games will go on sale on 15 March 2011, for a six-week application window until 26 April 2011. Tickets for the Paralympic Games will go on sale on 9 September 2011.

A total of 8.8 million tickets will be available for the Olympic Games, with another two million for the Paralympic Games. Subject to availability, tickets will remain on sale until the start of every event.

We aim to give as many people as possible the chance to attend the Games, ensuring a great atmosphere for all the events. Each ticket will include free travel on public transport in London for the day of the event, to encourage spectators to use the transport system and take in the festivities throughout the city.

 There will also be free events, including Road Cycling, Triathlon and the Marathon. These events will take place on the streets of London, where spectators can line the route to cheer on the athletes. Big screens at Live Sites across the UK will also screen the sporting action.

Have you been offered unauthorised tickets?

Don’t be fooled by bogus websites and organisations claiming to sell tickets to the Games. Tickets will only be available via official London 2012 sales channels from 2011. You will not be asked to make a payment or sign a contract until then.
Total number of tickets

A total of 10.8 million tickets will be available for the Games – 8.8m for the Olympic Games and two million for the Paralympic Games

Links:
http://www.london2012.com/visiting/tickets/
http://www.london2012.com/
http://www.Bestvaluetours.co.uk
http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/olympic_games/london_2012/default.stm

If you are visiting London for the London 2012 Olympics then plan ahead.  Book tours and accomodation now or you will be dissapointed

British Tour Guide
Histouries UK – Private guided tours of London and Britain

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The Hero Walk – In support of our wounded – 26th June 2011
The Hero Walk is a very tough challenge over the high chalk downs and ridge ways of Wiltshire and Salisbury Plain. At 26 miles it forms a marathon for runners and a great challenge for walkers. This challenge is a diverse trek over marathon distance, going back through 6,000 years of British history; the magnificent prehistoric stone circles of Avebury and Stonehenge need little introduction. The challenge will start in Avebury, where we will be able to get up close to the ancient stones before heading off via the mysterious ancient landmark of Silbury Hill. Silbury is the tallest man-made mound in Europe, however its purpose is still unknown.

Stonehenge - Avebury walk 2011

Stonehenge - Avebury walk 2011

We will then cross the spectacular chalk downs dotted with ancient earth-works, burial mounds and get up close to the enigmatic white horses carved into the chalk. In clear weather we will be able to see more here, as views of other valleys open up to us. The route takes in the highest point in Wiltshire (295m) and travels through the most active crop circle area in the world – keep your eyes open!

Crossing into MOD land you will either walk (or run!) through stunning areas little used by the general public, that have become a haven for wildlife and plants. Our route continues to undulate but the main hills are behind us and we start to anticipate the finish line at the World Heritage Site of Stonehenge. A short section of quiet road is a sign that we are nearing civilisation, and before long the world-renowned ancient circle of stones looms on the horizon before us. There is then time to celebrate with fellow walkers and runners before returning home. We look forward to seeing you there!

Avebury to Stonehenge Hero Walk 2011 Itinerary . . .

The 26-mile walk will take approximately 8-9 hours for fit and strong walkers. Our day starts at Avebury, which lies at the centre of one of the greatest surviving concentrations of Neolithic and Bronze Age monuments in Western Europe. We’ll enjoy Avebury’s magic in the quiet of the early morning before heading via the Silbury Hill.

Help for Heroes 
Help for Heroes

Dropping down into the village of Alton Barnes, we follow the Kennet and Avon canal east. From there we head south and join the White Horse trail to the Pewsey White Horse from where we have fabulous views of the surrounding chalk landscape. We descend the hill and continue along the trail to the Kennet and Avon Canal; this is a fabulous example of industrial revolution engineering. Crossing into MOD land we will either walk (or run!) through stunning areas little used by the general public and a haven for wildlife and plants. After this long day of great views and leg-stretching hills we will reach the final destination: Stonehenge, the most famous stone circle in the world.

DONATE NOW – CLICK HERE
REGISTER ONLINE
http://www.helpforheroes.org.uk/challenges-2011-avebury-stonehenge.html

Proud Sponsors
HisTOURies UK – The Best Tours of Wiltshire

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ROYAL wedding fever was in the air yesterday as airlines and hotels in

Prince William and Kate Middleton marry in April

Prince William and Kate Middleton marry in April

London reported a surge in bookings for the week of Prince William and Kate Middleton’s marriage.

Today marks just 100 days until the ­ceremony takes place at Westminster Abbey on April 29.

Amid growing excitement in Britain and abroad, William and Kate marked the countdown by putting the final touches to a list of around 1,800 people they want to invite to the service.
The couple have been overseeing plans for their big day from their isolated farmhouse in North Wales, travelling to London whenever their schedule has allowed it to sit in on regular meetings with courtiers.
The Prince is currently serving as an RAF helicopter pilot in Anglesey.
One senior aide said yesterday: “They’re both very happy and very excited about it all. It’s not long now.

ì Prince William and Kate Middleton marry in April î

There’s a lot of work to do but they’re doing it in between Prince William’s flying and Catherine’s other commitments.

“We’re pretty much living and breathing the wedding at the moment.”

Many of the key issues, such as the names of the bridesmaids, page boys, the wedding dress designer and its basic design, have already been hammered out in secret.

Kate made a final decision about her choice of designer last week from a small shortlist, according to royal sources.
A stag party venue has been agreed and, despite reports that it will take place in Cape Town, sources close to William have hinted that it will be in Britain or western Europe.
External links:
London Tourist Information
http://www.express.co.uk/posts/view/224159/Royal-Wedding-fever-starts-already

Royal Wedding 2011
Royal Wedding Souvenirs
Sightseeing Tours and Transport

UK Tour guide
HisTOURies UK – The Best Tours in British History

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Key Facts

Sport: Sailing, Paralympic Sailing
Capacity: No seats at venue
New or existing? Existing, Permanent
Travel and Tours: See below

Location and regeneration

The venue is a combination of the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy (WPNSA) and the adjoining commercial marina, in Dorset on England’s south coast.

It has kick-started the regeneration of the former Naval Air Station at Portland, now known as Osprey Quay, where new residential, commercial and marina facilities are already underway. It is an exposed spot at the western end of the English Channel, providing some of the best natural Sailing waters in the UK, with facilities on land to match.

About Weymouth Bay and Portland Harbour

Weymouth Bay and Portland Harbour provides some of the best natural sailing waters in the UK, with facilities on land to match.

The site has already hosted numerous international sailing events, including the 2006 ISAF World Youth Championships attended by over 60 nations.

Getting ready

Work to enhance the sailing facilities at Weymouth and Portland has been completed. The enhancements to the existing WPNSA facilities include a new permenant 250m slipway and new lifting and mooring facilities.

The project was completed on budget and ahead of schedule, providing world-class facilities for elite athletes and the local community more than three years before the Games.

During the Games

Sailing has historically been a non-ticketed event. We are currently reviewing our ticketing strategy with a view to bringing a spectator experience to suit various levels. This may include free ‘Live Sites’; quiet cliff observation points; ticketed venues with TV, tracking and commentary; and ticketed and specific spectator boats.

The ticketing review process is currently underway.

After the Games

The National Sailing Academy will benefit from the improved facilities that the Games will leave behind, providing a state-of-the-art facility for elite training, competition and local community use.

This use has already started: from a community programme through to hosting the Olympic Windsurfing discipline, RS:X class World Championship in 2009. This events programme is extensive and will also include hosting the IFDS (Paralympic Sailing) World Championship in 2011.

About Weymouth
Weymouth’s heritage as a seaport and fishing centre is overshadowed by its 18th century renaissance as a watering-place, and its more recent revival as a popular seaside resort. Most of the finest buildings are remnants of the town’s glory days as a Georgian resort, but there are even earlier houses to be found, including the converted Tudor cottages on Trinity Street.

George III lived in Weymouth, at Gloucester House (now a hotel). Reminders of the monarch are not hard to find; his likeness is cut into the turf of a hill outside the town, and a large statue stands on the busy seafront near the Tourist Information Centre.

 The seafront is the hub of activity in Weymouth, a stretch of golden sand bestrewn with deckchairs and crowded with sun seekers in summer. More relaxing perhaps are the opportunities for fishing and boating in the area. Within walking distance of the town centre are two nature reserves. Radipole Lake is home to birds who love open water, reedbeds and scrubby bushes, and Lodmore offers flood meadows, rough pasture and saltmarsh habitat.

 Weymouth is located between two Heritage Coasts (Purbeck and West Dorset Heritage Coast), and inland from the sea the entire surrounding region has been designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The town is just north-east of the Isle of Portland, a wonderfully isolated coastal area tenuously joined to the mainland by the narrow sweep of Chesil Beach. Portland is excellent bird-watching territory, with Pulpit Rock a good spot to observe puffins during the early summer. On the north-east coast of the Isle is Portland Castle, one of the best-preserved of Henry VIII’s coastal defenses.

Weymouth Beach
Weymouth Beach

Another, more modern defensive structure is Nothe Fort, built on a headland jutting into Portland Harbour in 1860. It was in service until 1956, and has since been transformed into a living museum, tracing the history of the fort, and in particular the role of Weymouth in the Second World War.

High speed ferries leave Weymouth harbour for the Channel Islands and St. Malo, in France.

Tours and Transport
Histouries UK are able to offer guided sightseeing tours of this stunning part of southern Britain including Dorset and Wiltshire.  We are able to offer tours from London to Weymouth visiting Stonehenge, Salisbury, Bath etc on route and vice-versa – ideal for famailies and small groups.  Maximise your time in Britain during the 2012 Olympics and book a tour (well in advance)

External links:
HisTOURies UK – Private guided tours
Coach Tours and Transport during the Olympics

London Tourist Information
http://www.london2012.com/games/venues/weymouth-and-portland.php
Visit Weymouth and Visit Portland
The Official Tourist Information Website for Weymouth and Portland

Dorset Tourist Guide
Histouries UK – The Best Tours of Dorset and Wilsthire

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SO MANY Japanese tourists are descending on one of Britain’s most

Station manager Teresa Ceesay with one of the signs in Japanese yesterday.

Station manager Teresa Ceesay with one of the signs in Japanese yesterday.

picturesque regions that the local station has put up notices in their native language.
The signs welcome the visitors and direct them to buses, taxis and hotels in the Cotswolds and even tell them where the toilets are.

They were put up in Moreton-in-Marsh, Gloucestershire, by station manager Teresa Ceesay, who noticed Japanese visitors constantly asking staff for directions.

Ms Ceesay, whose station boasts the title Gateway to the North Cotswolds, said: “I’d noticed a lot of Japanese people getting off the train and looking a bit puzzled.

“They’d ask for directions in our ticket office but we only have one member of staff. It’s only a few signs but it means a lot to people.”

Chris Dee, who manages tourism in the Cotswolds for Gloucestershire County Council, said: “The Japanese are wary about driving here, so the train is very important and Moreton is the main stop.”

About 50,000 Japanese people are estimated to visit the Cotswolds each year. Almost a quarter of a million visited the UK in 2009, boosting the country’s economy by an estimated £30.4million.

Japanese-born Juri Miyawaki, who owns Juri’s Tea Rooms in Winchcombe, Glos, said English culture fascinated many Japanese people.

She said: “Many Japanese ladies come here because they’re so interested in England’s baking heritage and getting recipes.

Avoid the big crowds and busy tourist coach stops by organising a private guided tour of the Cotwolds.  Get off the beaten track and explore the Cotsolds properly.

Small goups leave fewer footprints……….

Costwolds Tour Guide
HisTOURies.co.uk – The Best Cotswolds Tours

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Bruce Munro’s ‘Light Shower’ is now installed high in the Cathedral’s Spire Crossing where, from Monday 29 November, it will be switched on all day and light will cascade through the fibre optics to the 2,000 teardrop shaped diffusers. Light as gossamer, Light Shower is simply incredibly beautiful. It will stay in the Cathedral until the end of February.

Light Showers Number Crunching:
40,000 metres of fibre
1984 teardrop diffusers
32 rows of 64 drops
8 x 150 watt metal halide projectors
400 man hours to make
232 man hours to install

Bruce Munro’s Water Towers, a maze of huge towers made of stacked recycled water bottles, will be installed in the cloisters in early January 2011. They are illuminated with fibre optics powered by energy-conserving LED lamps, and will change colour synchronized to choral music.

Bruce Munro’s work is currently showing at ‘Contemplating the Void’ at the Guggenheim in New York. His acclaimed Field of Light was seen at the Eden Project in 2008/9. “I am deeply honoured to be invited to show at Salisbury Cathedral” says Munro. “It is a truly amazing building, a magnificent example of English Medieval architecture and craftsmanship.

His new exhibition starts the Friday (14th) at the Cathedral
Salisbury Cathedral: http://www.salisburycathedral.org.uk/
Salisbury, Wiltshire, The South of England. The city of the oldest clock in the world and neighbour of the most famous megaliths in the world.

This display is well worth a visit!
Salisbury and Stonehenge Tour Guide
HisTOURies UK – The Best Tours in Wessex

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