Wells, Somerset – A Little City With A Big History

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Whilst I travelled through Somerset the other day I had the most pleasant experience of visiting Wells, a beautiful city that can boast a busy and proud history. This place is totally at the other end of a perception of a city. A population at last count of just over 10,000 gives an idea, and it lays claim to being the smallest city in England, unless you believe that the City of London should be named so.

In fact Wells has held city status since all the way back to 1205 upon the build of its wonderful cathedral. A central point for many tourists here, you cannot help but look up and marvel at the architecture. The grand front with all the carved stone figures and arches alone brings an air of awe but to walk around it and within brings its own magic.

P1020302 Wells, Somerset   A Little City With A Big History

P1020303 Wells, Somerset   A Little City With A Big History

P1020305 Wells, Somerset   A Little City With A Big History

Built into the cathedral is the famous astronomical clock that was added around 1390 and to this day the mechanism is still working! On looking at it from within the cathedral you get an ancient wonderously designed clockface with a 12 hour markings plus a geocentric version of the universe with sun and moon circling the static Earth.

The mechanism from within also helps to run the clockface shown on the outside of the cathedral wall. Quite remarkable.

P1020307 Wells, Somerset   A Little City With A Big History

Located close to the cathedral is the street of Vicar’s Close. Said to be the oldest purely residential street in Europe that remains intact and still lived in. It dates from the 14th century and to see them in such a way to this day is a great thing to behold.

P1020310 Wells, Somerset   A Little City With A Big History

Then we come to the name of this place, Wells, why so? It is named after the fact it has 3 wells dedicated to St Andrew. The main one had the Bishop of Bath and Wells palace built over and around it. This palace in itself is an impressive building. The water rises from the well and flows into the moat that surrounds it. The non residential parts of the palace can be viewed along with the impressive gardens. The mute swans along the moat are out of the ordinary too! They have been trained to ring a bell near the drawbridge to signal they are hungry and need to be fed icon smile Wells, Somerset   A Little City With A Big History

P1020297 Wells, Somerset   A Little City With A Big History

P1020313 Wells, Somerset   A Little City With A Big History

For a break and a bite to eat I took in the culinary delights of a gorgeous public house The King’s Head, located right in the middle of the quaint high street. My great guide for the day @imstevewilson is the landlord, and the pride in his food, the pub and his customers is plain to see. Absolutely top notch dinner, with a grand mixture of medieval and modern that makes you feel very comfortable indeed.

Geoffs drawing Wells, Somerset   A Little City With A Big History

I will most definately be back for longer next time, so much to see, explore and learn from a small but stunning place.

 

Founder of BaldHiker.com and avid hiker, climber and trekker. Never liking to sit still and always seeking new adventures around the world. Sharing personal views here and tweeting live via @paul_steele

9 Comments to Wells, Somerset – A Little City With A Big History

  1. I stumbled upon Wells by accident while travelling around Britain for the Rugby League World Cup last year and I totally agree with you, it’s an amazingly beautiful little town. I had a pint in the Kings Head before heading up to the Bishop’s palace and the cathedral and just on the strength of those attractions alone, I reckon I could live in Wells. Great pics, cheers for bringing back great memories for me!

  2. Wells is one of my favourite places in the WORLD. Ancient, beautiful and filled with friendly people, I frequently make a day trip to Wells. I want to shout her praises and keep her a secret at the same time. : )

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