Nearest History & Heritage Somerset
Our History and Heritage category brings all Coast Radar’s Somerset listings related to looking for something to do or a place to visit together where they offer some form of historic or heritage based activity.
Finding the best things to see and do on a Somerset day out with your family or friends is easy – simply explore the historic and heritage links below, hit the jump to my location button or use the search bar to plan your next Somerset activity.
- Bishops Lydeard Mill and Rural Life Museum is a historic building and museum and dates from the 18th century, and was extended in the early 19th century with the addition of a millhouse. It has an overshot waterwheel and has been designated as a Grade II listed building. The water wheel weighs over two tonnes and is driven by water from Back Stream which originates in the Brendon Hills. The museum focuses on traditional trades and crafts including a wheelwright’s shop, cooper’s shop, saddler’s shop, blacksmith’s shop and a Victorian kitchen.
- The Bath Assembly Rooms are situated right at the heart of the Georgian city of Bath in Somerset. Designed by John Wood the Younger in 1769, the Assembly Rooms have been designated as a grade I listed building and are a popular tourist attraction. When they were opened in 1771, they became the hub of local Georgian society. People gathered from far and wide to socialise and gossip. Today visitors can view the four main function rooms; the 30m long ballroom, the tea room, the card room and the octagon. Part of the building is given over to the Fashion Museum and some of the rooms can be hired out for functions. Owned by the National Trust, the Assembly Rooms also have a café on site. Open all year round.
- Montacute House is an Elizabethan (1588-1601) Ham-stone house noted for its tapestries, 16th/17th Century furniture, and Tudor and Jacobean portraits. The house was one of the first to be buit without fortifications but purely as a house to show off. The house stands in 120ha (300 acres) of gardens and park.
- Cleeve Abbey is a 13th centurt Cistercian monastry which boasts the most impressively complete and unaltered set of monastic cloister buildings in England. Standing roofed and two storeys high, they include the gatehouse; the 15th-century refectory with its glorious angel roof; an unusual ‘painted chamber’; and the floor of an earlier refectory, decked from end to end with 13th-century heraldic tiles.
- Beckford’s Tower is a folly situated on Lansdown Hill, just outside Bath in Somerset. Built in 1827 for Bath resident, William Beckford, the tower stands at 37m high. Now owned by the Bath Preservation Trust, it is a grade I listed building. Within the tower there is a museum displaying various artefacts, furniture and paintings from Beckford’s collection. Visitors can also climb the tower and marvel at the panoramic views across the city. Part of the tower can also be rented out as a holiday home through the Landmark Trust. The tower and museum are open at weekends and bank holidays for a small admission fee.
- Glastonbury Abbey is a ruined monastery situated in the town of Glastonbury in Somerset. First founded in the 7th century and expanded in the 10th century, the Abbey was destroyed by fire in 1184 and subsequently rebuilt. It went onto become one of the richest and most powerful monasteries in medieval England. The last abbot, Richard Whiting, was executed as a traitor in 1539 following the dissolution of the monasteries during King Henry VIII’s reign. Today the Abbey ruins are open to the public and are a popular tourist attraction due, amongst other things, to the association Glastonbury has with the Arthurian legend. Medieval monks promoted the idea that Glastonbury was the setting for Avalon and that King Arthur and Queen Guinevere could be buried here. The Abbey and its grounds are open all year round.