Wiltshire History & Heritage
With a history spanning over 10,000 years, Wiltshire has been a special place for a very long time. History in Wiltshire is not just ancient, come today and you can walk through time.
Probably the most iconic of Wiltshire’s sites is of course Stonehenge. To this day there is still a mystery as to the reasons behind the site and how the stones were transported from as far away as Wales.
Further north is Avebury, the largest stone circle in the world. Dating from around 4,500 years ago, Avebury together with Stonehenge form part of the World Heritage Site.
Discover Salisbury’s 13th century Cathedral which boasts the tallest spire in Britain, the medieval village of Lacock with its Abbey and historic towns such as Malmesbury and Bradford on Avon and Wiltshire's county town, Trowbridge.
Visit one of our stately homes ranging from the Elizabethan Longleat House, Wilton House with its Tudor origins, Palladian-style Lydiard House and the Merchant’s House in Marlborough, the house of a prosperous silk mercer. Explore some of Wiltshire’s ecclesiastical heritage in some of our historic churches that open to the public.
During the industrial revolution, the Kennet & Avon Canal was created linking Bristol to Reading by water. The canal although no longer used for industrial reasons is still a very thriving place and is the perfect spot for a stroll or cycle along the tow path. Look out for Crofton Beam Engines near Marlborough and the Caen Hill Locks near Devizes which both form part of the impressive canal. One of the key drivers in the Industrial Revolution was Isambard Kingdom Brunel. Brunel was responsible for developing the Great Western Railway, still celebrated today in Swindon’s STEAM Museum.
Learn more about the history of Wiltshire at the Wiltshire Museum and Salisbury Museum and if you are searching your heritage then the Wiltshire History Centre in Chippenham should be your first point of call. Discover more history on a visit to one of our museums from transport to local history.