Summer at our places on the Isle of Wight
Now that summer is here, our places make a great way to enjoy a day out. Whether you fancy exploring inside a windmill or finding out about the history of rockets, there’s plenty for you to discover here on the Isle of Wight.
Gardens and guns
Tucked away in a sheltered valley, Mottistone Gardens provide a treat for the senses throughout the summer. Stroll through the borders where exotic plants brighten the gardens with their colourful displays, and enjoy the scent of roses in the afternoon sun. Look out for our flower pot people whilst you wander, and then relax in the tea-gardens with a drink and a slice of freshly made cake. Before you leave, take a look around our shop. Located in our ancient barn, it is the perfect place to pick up a souvenir of your visit, or a special treat.
If you enjoy being by the sea, then head along to The Needles Old Battery and New Battery. Here you can find out about the fascinating history of these fortifications, from Victorian folly to space age rocket testing site, and explore the parade ground with its many guns. Whilst you’re here, enjoy a slice of cake or light lunch in our 1940s tea-room with its spectacular views of the Needles rocks.
After wandering the meadows and lanes of Newtown, pop along to the Old Town Hall. A building has stood on this site since the 13thcentury but the town around it has long since disappeared. During your visit you can learn more about the colourful history and corrupt political past of this Rotten Borough, and discover how the current building was saved by the Ferguson Gang in 1933.
A trip to the east
Over on the eastern side of the Isle of Wight stands Bembridge Windmill. Located amongst wildflower fields and hedgerows, it’s the Island’s only surviving windmill. Set yourself a summer challenge and try climbing to the top, or discover our secret millers hidden around the mill.
A short distance away on the downs above the windmill is Bembridge Fort. Take in the panoramic views of the coast and countryside (and spot the windmill) before exploring inside. Like the Needles Old Battery, Bembridge Fort was built by Lord Palmerston to protect against French invasion. Since then it has had a varied past, eventually falling into disrepair. Thankfully, our team of volunteers is now working to restore the fort, and offer guided tours on Tuesdays until October. Booking for a tour is essential, so please phone 01983 741020 to ensure that there is space available.
With the arrival of warmer weather and sunnier days, there’s no better time to go exploring. Come and see our places this summer, and don’t forget to look out for our special summer events too, so you can make even more of your visit.