Ventnor is a seaside resort and civil parish established in the Victorian era on the south-east coast of the Isle of Wight, eleven miles from Newport. It is situated south of St Boniface Down, built on steep slopes leading down to the sea; the higher part is referred to as Upper Ventnor. Ventnor is sometimes taken to include the nearby and older settlements of St Lawrence and Bonchurch, which are covered by its town council; the population of the parish in 2016 was about 5,800. Ventnor became fashionable as both a health and holiday resort in the late 19th century, described as the'English Mediterranean' and'Mayfair by the Sea'. Medical advances during the early twentieth century reduced its role as a health resort and, like other British seaside resorts, its summer holiday trade suffered the changing nature of travel during the latter part of that century, its sheltered location beneath the hilly chalk downland produces a microclimate with more sunny days and fewer frosts than the rest of the island.
This allows many species of subtropical plant to flourish. Ventnor retains a Victorian character, has an active arts scene, is regaining popularity as a place to visit. While Bonchurch and St Lawrence both have churches dating back to the Norman era, the area in-between that became Ventnor was unremarkable until the 19th century. In Anglo-Saxon times it was known as Holeweia, which by the 12th century had become Holeweye, or hollow way. By 1617 its name appears as Ventnor named after the family name le Vyntener. There are indications of Bronze Age settlement, with burial mounds on the nearby downs, excavations have evidenced small scale settlement in the area during both the Iron Age and the early Roman period; these include middens and palaeoenvironmental deposits at Binnel Bay, Woody Bay, St Catherine's Point and Rocken End. The Isle of Wight was the last part of England to be converted to Christianity, Saint Boniface is believed to have preached locally in the 8th century. During the 13th century, the area was covered by the manors of Holloway and Steephill, both belonging to the Lisle family.
A 1992 archaeological survey found evidence of a medieval settlement at Flowers Brook, referred to in a 1327 subsidy roll as Villata de steple. This area was subsequently incorporated into two farms, with some cottages on the site demolished in 1834. Ventnor watermill, on a site just north of the current cascade, is first mentioned in 1327, was destroyed by fire in 1848, rebuilt by 1853, demolished in 1875. In the early nineteenth century, in addition to the mill, Ventnor consisted of a few fishermen's huts by the cove, a couple of inns, a farm. In 1804, it was described by John Britton as a "hamlet...formed by a range of neat cottages chiefly inhabited by fishermen, open to the sea in front, backed by woods and the high downs". The area was divided between the parishes of Newchurch. In 1820 both of the manors were sold to other building speculators; the spur for expansion was the publication in 1830 of the second edition of physician James Clark's book: The influence of climate on disease. This identified the microclimate of Ventnor and the Undercliff as ideal for people with chest complaints, at a time when consumption was a common cause of death.
Thereafter Ventnor developed rapidly into a town, with numerous hotels and boarding houses targeting sick visitors during the winter, a wider range of shops than would be expected for a town of its size. In 1844 Parliament passed an Act "for better paving, lighting and otherwise improving part of the parish of Newchurch, called Ventnor, for establishing a market therein". However, not everyone was enamoured with the fast-growing town: in 1845, after recounting the positive reviews of others, writer John Gwilliam complained of the "intolerable" summer heat and the chalk dust about the town, concluding that to live there would "be one of the greatest punishments that could be inflicted upon me in the Isle of Wight". In 1853 the first newspaper on the island, the Ventnor Mercury, was launched. In 1869 Dr Arthur Hill Hassall opened the Royal National Hospital for Diseases of the Chest in St Lawrence, many local buildings date from the 1860s, by when the current commercial centre of the town was substantially developed.
The nineteenth century saw development aimed at wealthier holidaymakers from Britain and Europe, as British seaside resorts became popular. The first pier from 1860 was washed away. Breakwaters were built in 1863, by the following year, a steamer service to Littlehampton connected with trains to London. In 1866 the Isle of Wight Railway reached Ventnor, in 1870 the iron Royal Victoria Pier was constructed. Subsequent storm damage delayed the full establishment of steamer services until 1888 when they were carrying 10,000 passengers from Bournemouth, Southsea and Shanklin; the railway ran a non-stop train from Ryde to Ventnor, named'The Invalid Express' for the consumptive patients. Ventnor became known as ` Mayfair by the sea' for the number of wealthy Londoners. In 1887, Bartholomew's Gazetteer described Ventnor as "one of the most popular of English health resorts", with the parish
Godshill is a village and civil parish on the Isle of Wight with a population of 1,465 according to the 2001 census, reducing to 1,459 at the 2011 Census. It is located between Ventnor in the southeast of the Island. Ford Farm near Godshill was the site of the first Isle of Wight Festival in 1968, it attracted 10,000 people to see acts such as the mystical Arthur Brown. Godshill Park House dates from about 1760 and was built as a home farm to serve the Appuldurcombe Estate. In around 1860 the house became a private residence, it was used in the Second World War as an army hospital. Godshill has pubs called the "Griffin"- featuring a large griffin-shaped maze and children's playground, "The Taverners". Public transport is provided by Southern Vectis buses on route 2 and route 3, which runs between Newport, Sandown and Ventnor. Godshill is part of the electoral ward called Wroxall; the population of this ward at the 2011 Census was 3,212. Since 1952 Godshill has been the home of a model village of itself and Shanklin's old village at a scale of 1:10.
It is so detailed and on such a large scale. Within that second model there is a third smaller model of the village; the parish church is All Saints' Church. It is a medieval building noted for its medieval wall painting of a Lily crucifix, has a stained glass window by William Morris. Godshill parish and parish council web site
Shorwell is a village and civil parish on the Isle of Wight, United Kingdom. It is 4 1⁄2 miles from Newport in the southwest of the island. Shorwell was one of Queen Victoria's favourite places to visit on the Isle of Wight; the parish of Shorwell contains three manors: North Shorwell, South Shorwell, Wolverton. The Shorwell helmet, a sixth-century Anglo-Saxon helmet, was found in the parish. Northcourt was built in 1615 by the Deputy Governor of the Island, Sir John Leigh, is the islands's largest manor house. Northcourt Manor's grounds contain a spring, the Shor Well, which feeds a stream, one of the tributaries of the Buddle Brook. There is a pub called featuring a pond stocked with brown trout; the land around Shorwell is hilly, backs onto the chalk downs leading to Chale Bay and Compton Bay. Shorwell is graced by St. Peter's Church, Shorwell; the Island's oldest netball club is based in Shorwell as well as Shorwell United, the Island's oldest Sunday League football club. It is linked to other parts of the Island by Southern Vectis bus route 12, serving Freshwater and Newport as well as intermediate villages.
Photographs of Shorwell, Francis Frith Collection
Edward the Confessor
Edward the Confessor known as Saint Edward the Confessor, was among the last Anglo-Saxon kings of England. Considered the last king of the House of Wessex, he ruled from 1042 to 1066. Edward was the son of Emma of Normandy, he succeeded Cnut the Great's son – and his own half brother – Harthacnut. He restored the rule of the House of Wessex after the period of Danish rule since Cnut conquered England in 1016; when Edward died in 1066, he was succeeded by Harold Godwinson, defeated and killed in the same year by the Normans under William the Conqueror at the Battle of Hastings. Edgar the Ætheling, of the House of Wessex, was proclaimed king after the Battle of Hastings in 1066, but never ruled and was deposed after about eight weeks. Historians disagree about Edward's long reign, his nickname reflects the traditional image of him as pious. Confessor reflects his reputation as a saint who did not suffer martyrdom, as opposed to King Edward the Martyr; some portray Edward the Confessor's reign as leading to the disintegration of royal power in England and the advance in power of the House of Godwin, due to the infighting that began after his heirless death.
Biographers Frank Barlow and Peter Rex, on the other hand, portray Edward as a successful king, one, energetic and sometimes ruthless. However, Richard Mortimer argues that the return of the Godwins from exile in 1052 "meant the effective end of his exercise of power", citing Edward's reduced activity as implying "a withdrawal from affairs". About a century in 1161, Pope Alexander III canonised the late king. Saint Edward was one of England's national saints until King Edward III adopted Saint George as the national patron saint in about 1350. Saint Edward's feast day is 13 October, celebrated by both the Church of England and the Catholic Church in England and Wales. Edward was the seventh son of Æthelred the Unready, the first by his second wife, Emma of Normandy. Edward was born between 1003 and 1005 in Islip, is first recorded as a'witness' to two charters in 1005, he had one full brother, a sister, Godgifu. In charters he was always listed behind his older half-brothers. During his childhood, England was the target of Viking raids and invasions under Sweyn Forkbeard and his son, Cnut.
Following Sweyn's seizure of the throne in 1013, Emma fled to Normandy, followed by Edward and Alfred, by Æthelred. Sweyn died in February 1014, leading Englishmen invited Æthelred back on condition that he promised to rule'more justly' than before. Æthelred agreed. Æthelred died in April 1016, he was succeeded by Edward's older half-brother Edmund Ironside, who carried on the fight against Sweyn's son, Cnut. According to Scandinavian tradition, Edward fought alongside Edmund. Edmund died in November 1016, Cnut became undisputed king. Edward again went into exile with his brother and sister. In the same year Cnut had Edward's last surviving elder half-brother, executed, leaving Edward as the leading Anglo-Saxon claimant to the throne. Edward spent a quarter of a century in exile mainly in Normandy, although there is no evidence of his location until the early 1030s, he received support from his sister Godgifu, who married Drogo of Mantes, count of Vexin in about 1024. In the early 1030s, Edward witnessed four charters in Normandy, signing two of them as king of England.
According to the Norman chronicler, William of Jumièges, Robert I, Duke of Normandy attempted an invasion of England to place Edward on the throne in about 1034, but it was blown off course to Jersey. He received support for his claim to the throne from a number of continental abbots Robert, abbot of the Norman abbey of Jumièges, to become Edward's Archbishop of Canterbury. Edward was said to have developed an intense personal piety during this period, but modern historians regard this as a product of the medieval campaign for his canonisation. In Frank Barlow's view "in his lifestyle would seem to have been that of a typical member of the rustic nobility", he appeared to have a slim prospect of acceding to the English throne during this period, his ambitious mother was more interested in supporting Harthacnut, her son by Cnut. Cnut died in 1035, Harthacnut succeeded him as king of Denmark, it is unclear whether he intended to keep England as well, but he was too busy defending his position in Denmark to come to England to assert his claim to the throne.
It was therefore decided that his elder half-brother Harold Harefoot should act as regent, while Emma held Wessex on Harthacnut's behalf. In 1036 Edward and his brother Alfred separately came to England. Emma claimed that they came in response to a letter forged by Harold inviting them to visit her, but historians believe that she did invite them in an effort to counter Harold's growing popularity. Alfred was captured by Earl of Wessex who turned him over to Harold Harefoot, he had Alfred blinded by forcing red-hot pokers into his eyes to make him unsuitable for kingship, Alfred died soon after as a result of his wounds. The murder is thought to be the source of much of Edward's hatred for the Earl and one of the primary reasons for Godwin's banishment in autumn 1051. Edward is said to have fought a successful skirmish near Southampton, and
Rookley is a village and civil parish on the Isle of Wight. It is located five kilometres south of Newport near the centre of the island, it has a country park on the site of the last working Isle of Wight brickworks. There is another, the "Chequers", a short distance from the village; the latter was the centre of the island's smuggling trade in the 18th century. Southern Vectis bus route 3 serves the village on its way between Newport, Shanklin and Ryde, including intermediate villages; the Village Association Playing Field in Highwood Lane hosts Godshill Cricket Club who compete in Division Two of the Harwoods Renault Isle of Wight League. It is home to Rookley Football Club, managed by Paul Wright. Rookley have two teams in the island leagues: their firsts in League 2 and reserves in Combination 2. Two major events are held in the field each year: Rookley Show. Rookley tourist information and accommodation guide
The River Yar on the Isle of Wight, rises in a chalk coomb in St. Catherine's Down near Niton, close to the southern tip of the island, it flows across the Lower Cretaceous rocks of the eastern side of the island, through the gap in the central Upper Cretaceous chalk ridge of the Island at Yarbridge across the now drained Brading Haven to Bembridge Harbour in the north east. For most of its course, the river passes through rural areas. At Alverstone, a small weir uses water from the river to power a water mill; the Yar is one of two rivers on the Isle of Wight with the same name. It is referred to as the Eastern Yar. Ordnance Survey One Inch Seventh Series sheet 180 Isle of Wight Estuaries Project
Brighstone is a village and civil parish on the Isle of Wight, 6 miles southwest of Newport on the B3399 road. Brighstone was known as "Brixton"; the name derives from the Saxon name "Ecgbert's Tun". Brighstone is the largest village in the area locally known as the Back of the Wight and extends toward Limerstone and Mottistone. In Roman times a villa was built to the north, to take advantage of the clean waters of the Buddle Brook. Brighstone history dates back to the 9th century when it was given to the Bishopric of Winchester by King Egbert. Brighstone parish was formed in 1644; the civil parish comprises the main village of Brighstone together with the smaller villages of Brook, Hulverstone and Mottistone. The entire parish lies within an area of the Isle of Wight AONB and its coastline is designated as Heritage Coast and Site of Special Scientific Interest. St. Mary's Church, Brighstone is a venerable old church that has stood for more than eight centuries; the village features Brighstone Shop and Museum, owned by the National Trust, displaying exhibitions on village life in the 19th century and contains a wealth of information about the Brighstone lifeboats.
Brighstone is popular with tourists for local shops. Several large events are hosted in the village each year, including the Brighstone Show, Art exhibitions and the Brighstone Christmas Tree Festival; the local scout hut functions as a Youth Hostel during the summer. The village pub is called The Three Bishops, named after three rectors of Brighstone parish who went on to become famous bishops; the first was the 17th-century Bishop Ken who wrote the famous hymns "Awake my soul and with the sun" and "Glory to Thee my God this night". Bishop Samuel Wilberforce became rector in 1830, used to entertain his father, anti-slavery campaigner William Wilberforce. Wilberforce Road is named after him, Brighstone's village hall is called the Wilberforce Hall; the third bishop, Doctor George Moberly, was headmaster of Winchester College before changing career to become rector of Brighstone in 1866. Another notable person who lived in the village in the 19th century was the clergyman and amateur palaeontologist William Fox, who discovered several species of dinosaur in Brighstone Bay.
The village is linked to other parts of the island by Southern Vectis bus route 12, serving Freshwater and Newport as well as intermediate villages. Brighstone Bay Brighstone Forest Brighstone Down Brighstone Christmas Tree Festival St. Mary's Church, Brighstone Brighstone Parish official website