Welcome to InfoBritain, for historical visiting information in the UK. InfoBritain tells you what happened and where it happened. We have articles and visits relating to all historical periods from prehistoric Britain to recent times, and to the lives of major British authors, artists, musicians, scientists, politicians, military and royal figures. You can use our site search, or our various menus to find suggested visits relating to times or people. Alternatively go to the regions menu, find a place to visit in a particular area, and then link back to the history relating to it. We also have a full accommodation booking service for all parts of the mainland UK. We specialise in historic accommodation, but we also have comprehensive lists of hotels of all types and price ranges. See the regional menus on the right. Enjoy!
An alphabetical index is available below.
A Personal Note (Archive)
March 28, 2015
Britain still seems to need its monarchy. As well as continuing to value the present royal family, there has been a state funeral for the remains of Richard III in Leicester. Perhaps this is a reminder that in an age that supposedly admires merit, there is still a desire for the kind of leadership that avoids the unpredictability of how we judge these things. People argue about Richard III, about the way he became king. But the fact that he was a king seems to sit above all that, and had people out on the streets in Leicester. It seems there is still a place for the type of leader described by T.E. Lawrence in Seven Pillars Of Wisdom, the leaders of Arab tribes who are "hostile to merit, or its acknowledgement". They require a leader "whose supremacy should be based on an idea: illogical, undeniable, discriminant: which instinct might accept and reason find no rational basis to reject or approve".
Approval of Richard III is beside the point. The fact that he was king is enough.
Historical news for April
An exhibition of salted paper prints, one of the earliest forms of photography, is currently being staged at the Tate Britain. Dating back to 1839, the fragility of these prints means very few survive, making this a rare opportunity to experience some of the world's earliest photography. The event runs 25th February - 27th June. For more details go to http://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-britain/exhibition/salt-and-silver-early-photography-1840
Meanwhile in Bradford, at the National Media Museum, the world's oldest photographic society, the Royal Photographic Society will be displaying 200 of its most historic images. The exhibition begins on 20th March, and runs until 21st June. For more information go to http://www.nationalmediamuseum.org.uk/planavisit/exhibitions/drawn-by-light/about
The Tate St Ives is currently staging an exhibition on the development of international photography from the 1920s - 1960s. The exhibition runs until 10th May 2015. For more details go to: http://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-st-ives/exhibition/modern-lens-international-photography-and-tate-collection
Anniversaries for April
5th April 1621: The Mayflower leaves Plymouth Massachusettes to return to England following its voyage out to the New World.
12th April 1961: Yuri Gargarin becomes the first man to enter outer space, aboard Vostok 3KA-3. His first orbit of earth takes 108 minutes.
17th April 1984: A British police officer, Yvonne Fletcher, is shot and killed by gunfire from the Libyan embassy in London. This leads to an eleven day seige of the embassy and a breakdown in diplomatic relations between Britain and Libya.
18th April 1906: A major earthquake devastates San Francisco. More than 3000 people are killed, and half the city's population is left homeless.
22nd April 1969: Robin Knox-Johnson becomes the first person to sail solo and non-stop around the world.
24th April 1990: The Hubble Space Telescope is launched aboard Space Shuttle Discovery. The telescope will go on to record the most detailed visible light images ever, and allow an accurate determination of the expansion of the universe.
30th April 1006: The brightest supernova in history, known as SN 1006, first appears in the sky. Initially it shines ten times more brightly than Venus, and is decribed by observers in Asia, Africa and Europe. North American petroglyphs might also be a recording of the event.
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We make every effort to ensure the accuracy of our information, but it is always advisable to check details of any visit beforehand using contact details provided. If you spot a mistake please let us know by contacting us.
Almost all photography on InfoBritain is by InfoBritain or by named contributors. All educational use is permitted, but copyright is reserved for commercial uses. Occasionally we have used copyright free stock images which are available for any use. A note will identify these images.
Thank you to photo contributors Danielle Davis, Jean Edwards, Vicky Eagle of Portsmouth Dockyard, Kevin Edwards, Derick Fusco, Julian Jones, Richard Jones, Jackie Lewis, Debbie Lowless, Judy Mills of the Corinium Museum, Jane Barron of the World Rugby Museum, and Susan Stuart of Old Spitalfields Market.