Hever Castle

Jan Leeming

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Jan's Blog

Computers and the internet are amazing things. One of my concerns with putting together this site was that it could remain current, yet with all my travelling I've often much to say, but little time to say it. Years ago when reading the news it would take me days on end to reply to the kind letters people sent. Now, with the magic of the modern age, I can keep you up to date with what I'm doing and other events in my life.


Date: 8th September 2011


Went with the Friends of Canterbury Cathedral on a day trip to Hever Castle which I’ve not been to for about twenty years.

It’s a small Castle and was the home of the Boleyn Family where Anne Boleyn grew up and where she was romanced by Henry V111. At the turn of the last century the Castle was in a ruinous state but was purchased by the Astor family and William Waldorf Astor used his family fortune to restore the Castle to its former glory. And it is glorious.

Being such a lover of history it was fabulous to look at a bed in which Ann Boleyn and her sister Mary (also a mistress to Henry V111 and to whom she bore a child) had slept and also a bed in which Henry himself rested. The panelling, the ceilings - everything about this very small and compact Castle - are highly enjoyable.

And the Gardens really had the Wow factor. We were given a guided tour by the lovely Head Gardener Neil. Not only are the gardens beautiful to behold but they are dotted all around with Italian statues and other artefacts which William Astor brought back from his travels.

Even though its a goodly journey for me to visit Hever, I was so impressed that I signed up for annual membership. If nothing else, I’ll try and visit in all four seasons to admire the gardens.

No photos were allowed inside the Castle but the Guide Book was not only superb but inexpensive and I didn’t mind not being able to take photos. Wish I could say the same for the Amber Room in the Catherine Palace. One was allowed to take photos everywhere except the Amber Room - I duly obeyed and then bought the book only to be very disappointed in the poor quality of the illustrations - washed out and unimaginative and I could have done far better with my superb Sony.

So here’s a photo of Hever and I’ll post a few more in the Gallery.



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