Hampshire will be reminding everyone in World Cup year that the county is known as the cradle of cricket. In addition to the county hosting several of the matches, Hambledon Cricket Club, founded in the 1750s, will be one of the places taking centre stage. Known as ‘the cradle of cricket’, Hambledon Cricket Club was instrumental in helping to develop many of the rules of the game, prior to the focus switching to Lord’s.
2019 will mark the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landings and the Ministry of Defence has announced that Portsmouth will host Britain’s commemorations. Key attractions linked to this are the D-Day Story, Southwick House (home to the original D-Day Map), and Southwick village. Hampshire played a pivotal role in the D-Day landings, and there will be a range of events taking place in the county during 2019.
Hampshire offers a rich variety of road cycling, off-road cycling, car free routes and even the South Coast’s only velodrome, all within easy reach of London.
Downton Abbey – the movie
The shutters will open and the servant’s bell will ring once again at Highclere Castle in Hampshire, better known as Downton Abbey. Everyone has been waiting for the highly anticipated feature length Downton Abbey movie, which is expected to hit screens in autumn 2019.
Heckfield Place, and other accommodation
The much-anticipated opening of Heckfield Place in 2018 has once again put the wide range of accommodation on offer to visitors to Hampshire under the spotlight. The Wellington Arms near Basingstoke opened 25 bedrooms for business at the start of the year; and there are plans in place for a new spa at the Holiday Inn at Winchester from early Autumn 2019.
2019 marks the 200th anniversary of Charles Kingsley, author of The Water Babies – along with both the 70th anniversary of Jane Austen’s House Museum being open to the public; and the 200th anniversary of Keats’ Ode To Autumn – inspired during a stay in Winchester.
Exbury Gardens – the inspiration of Lionel Nathan de Rothschild, who bought the Exbury Estate in the New Forest in 1919 from Lord Forster – will mark its centenary year during 2019.
70th National Parks
2019 is the 70th anniversary of the passing of the National Parks and Access to the Countryside Act, a fact that will be marked in National Parks across the whole of the country. Hampshire is one of the very few counties in the UK with two National Parks: the New Forest National Park; and the South Downs National Park.
Leonardo da Vinci drawings from the Royal Collection in Southampton
To mark the 500th anniversary of the death of Leonardo da Vinci, 144 of the Renaissance master’s greatest drawings in the Royal Collection will go on display in 12 simultaneous exhibitions across the UK. Southampton City Art Gallery will stage an exhibition, running from February 1 to May 6.
VisitHampshire will join a new “cultural revolution” in domestic tourism by adding its weight to VisitEngland’s #MyMicroGap campaign.
All tourist information for Hampshire can be found at http://www.visit-hampshire.co.uk.