Sunday, April 13, 2014


15. Take advantage of hassle free travel to some of England’s top tourist destinations. Upon arrival at the Grosvenor Hotel, our base in London, you can leave the rest of the trip to us: private coach transportation is provided for the entire length of the tour, as are baggage handling, hotels, site entrance fees and most meals.

14. Soak up the English atmosphere.  With an unhurried itinerary that includes country homes, museums, castles and more, you’ll have plenty of time to tour each site, have a meal or a cuppa and, of course, visit the gift shops at your own pace.

13. Travel with a group who share your interests and passion for British history and enjoy a convivial dinner most nights with your travel companions as you discuss the days’ sights and events.

12. Walk the White Cliffs of Dover. Follow the windswept trail and gaze out to sea as we experience the grandeur and wild beauty of the Cliffs. Julius Caesar wrote about them in the Commentarii De Bello Gallico, Shakespeare used them as a setting in King Lear, and the Duke of Wellington himself gazed upon the Cliffs when returning home from his numerous military victories.   So romantic are the White Cliffs of Dover that they were chosen as the backdrop for the final scene in the 2009 BBC version of Jane Austen’s “Emma,” which you can watch here.

11. Participate in exclusive events arranged especially for our group, including dinner at the historic Grenadier Pub in London, lunch at the Duke of Wellington’s country home, Stratfield Saye, and a boat cruise down the River Thames in Windsor.

10. Become swept up in military pageantry by visiting Horse Guards, the Wellington Arch, the Guards Parade in Windsor and the Household Cavalry Museum.

9. Visit Castles. Three of England’s grandest castles are included on our itinerary – Walmer Castle, the Tower of London, and Windsor Castle. Between them, these sites include portions that date from the 11th to the 21st centuries, allowing you to imagine life as it was from the Norman Conquest, through the Tudor and Georgian periods, and into the present day.  We’ll be visiting the Waterloo Chamber at Windsor Castle and the special exhibition at the Tower featuring the Duke of Wellington’s influence during his time as Constable of the Tower. In addition, we’ll be viewing the Duke’s private rooms, which have been preserved at Walmer Castle, used by Wellington during his tenure as Lord of the Cinque Ports.

8.  Join a day-long walking tour through the fabled streets of St. James’s, London, with your guides, Victoria and Kristine. Take a leisurely stroll as you listen to tales about gentlemen’s clubs and famed personalities who frequented the area. Hear tales of bawdy houses, royal chapels, and courtesans. Explore hidden alleys and tucked away streets. Discover their connections to duels, downfalls, and dandies before we quench our thirst at some of London’s most historic and atmospheric pubs. The day also includes time to stop for snacks,  lunch, and a bit of shopping.

7. Gain entrance to properties that are rarely open to the public. Stratfield Saye, the Duke’s home in Hampshire, is only open to the general public for two months of the year; Frogmore House in Windsor (above), a royal residence since 1709, is again open for just two months annually, whilst tickets to Highclere Castle cannot be secured for love or money until 2016. Fortunately, the Duke of Wellington Tour has taken advantage of a very narrow window during which these sites are open concurrently - and we’ve booked reserved tickets for all.

6. Explore Stately Homes.  Here’s your chance to get up close and personal with the interiors and grounds of stately homes from various periods of English history. We’ll be seeing furnishings, works of art and personal collections at Apsley House, the Duke of Wellington’s London home; Basildon Park in Hampshire (used as Netherfield Park in the Keira Knightley version of Pride and Prejudice); the Regency Town House in Hove; and what is perhaps the most fantastic and fabulous stately home of them all, George IV’s Royal Pavilion at Brighton, pictured above.

5. Enjoy a private, guided tour of Downton Abbey, also known as Highclere Castle, home to Lord and Lady Carnarvon. We’ll be given access to the State Rooms, the bedrooms, and various spaces in the Castle that comprise both Upstairs and Downstairs life, many of which have been used as sets for Downton Abbey. We’ll hear tales about the real life history of the Castle, as well as many anecdotes about the filming of DA and the fictional Grantham Family before visiting the Egyptian Exhibition, comprised of artifacts connected to the 5th Earl of Carnarvon, who famously discovered the Tomb of the Egyptian Boy Pharaoh, Tutankhamun, in 1922 with his archaeological colleague, Howard Carter.

4.  Immerse yourself in the rich and varied history of the Georgian, Regency and Victorian eras whilst exploring the life and times of the Duke of Wellington.

3.  Visit the places and objects that have become the stuff of legends - the grave of Copenhagen, the stallion who carried Wellington over the battlefield at Waterloo - and had the temerity to take a nip at him when the Duke finally dismounted; the grounds of Frogmore House, where Queen Victoria and Prince Albert are buried; the site of Anne Boleyn’s execution; White’s Club, Lock’s Hatters, Hatchard’s, Berkeley Square, and other London landmarks; the Crooked House in Windsor; the playing fields of Eton and many more historic “must sees.”

2. Travel with your escorts Victoria Hinshaw and Kristine Hughes, writers, researchers,  Wellington aficionados and bloggers ( Number One London - one million page views!). England is a second home to both Victoria and Kristine and they look forward to sharing their next trip across the pond, as well as their knowledge of British history, with you. Travel through the English countryside and be regaled with tales from history and anecdotes of historic personalities. Did you know that the Duke of Wellington and his contemporaries ran blanket races down the hallways of the Brighton Pavilion?

1.  Celebrate this once in a lifetime opportunity to travel in comfort as you take advantage of a most unique itinerary in the company of friends. 


Saturday, August 10, 2013

The Duke of Wellington Tour
Presented by Number One London
September 4th to 14th, 2014


Join Kristine Hughes and Victoria Hinshaw - authors, bloggers, and Wellington aficionados - as they travel through the English countryside on a one-of-a-kind tour visiting locations connected to Arthur Wellesley, the first Duke of Wellington, including London, Walmer, Brighton, Hampshire, and Windsor.

Thursday, 9/4:  Depart from your USA airport on an overnight flight to London before joining the group at your London hotel.  Air transportation is not included in the price of the tour.

 Friday, 9/5:  Arrive in London and transfer on your own to the Grosvenor Hotel, housed in a Grade II listed building attached to Victoria Station.   Meet Kristine and Victoria, as well as your fellow travelers, at late afternoon tea in the hotel, when you’ll be given an overview of your London itinerary. Spend the remainder of the evening at your leisure or join Kristine and Victoria on a jaunt to their favorite London spots. Be prepared to raise a few toasts to the Duke along the way.

Saturday, 9/6:    Travel via private motor coach for an exclusive guided tour of Apsley House, the Duke of Wellington’s London home, also known as Number One London. Afterwards visit the nearby Wellington Arch, built to commemorate the Duke of Wellington’s victory over Napoleon.  Transfer by motor coach to the Tower of London for the special exhibition on Wellington's influence and the changes he made to the Tower as both Constable of the Tower and Prime Minister. You’ll have time for a light lunch on your own before motoring to Horse Guards for the 4pm Dismounting Inspection of the troops.  Visit the Household Cavalry Museum before returning to the hotel to freshen up before heading to the Grenadier Pub, once used by the Duke’s own regiment, for an included three course dinner. 

 Sunday, 9/7:  Join Kristine and Victoria for a special walking tour of London. Spend the day strolling through Regency and early Victorian London and listen to tales of the people, places, and things that shaped Wellington’s life and times. The walk through the neighborhoods of St. James and Mayfair will include landmarks that are either famous or infamous, with some located in plain sight and others hidden from view. There will be stops for eating, drinking, and shopping along the way. If you prefer not to join the walking tour, you may spend the day at your leisure.  Dinner this evening is on your own.  This may be a perfect time to take in a distinctive pub or a show in the West End.
Monday, 9/8:  Check out of the hotel and journey through the Kent countryside to Walmer Castle, where Wellington lived as Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports and where your visit includes a guided tour and talk on the Duke of Wellington.  Afterwards, enjoy some free time in Deal. Explore the market town, have lunch and stroll the beach before travelling on to Ashford where you’ll check into the Ashford InternationalHotel for a one night stay.  Dinner is in the hotel.
 Tuesday, 9/9:  Drive two hours to Brighton for a self-guided tour of the Brighton Pavilion, one of the most decadent Regency buildings in England. Built by George IV, Wellington was a frequent visitor to the Pavilion and was known to participate in blanket races along its corridors. You’ll have plenty of time to explore the Museum, located in the refurbished stables, and free time to explore nearby shops and have lunch on your own, or you may want to stay at the Pavilion and visit their tea room. This afternoon take a private tour with the curator, Nick Tyson of the Regency Town House, a period town house meticulously restored to reflect daily life in the Georgian era, both upstairs and down. Later, travel to Reading to the Mercure George Hotel for the next three nights. Dinner at the hotel.

 Wednesday, 9/10:  Spend a special day at Stratfield Saye, the Duke of Wellington’s country estate, where you’ll be given a guided tour before visiting the adjacent museum and walking the grounds to the final resting place of Copenhagen, the horse ridden by the Duke throughout the Battle of Waterloo.  A two course lunch will be provided in the tea room.  Visit the on-site Farm Shop before leaving the estate.  Dinner at your hotel.

Thursday, 9/11:  Visit Highclere Castle, home of the Earl of Carnarvon, who sat in the House of Lords with the Duke of Wellington. Enjoy a guided tour of the Castle, better known today as Downton Abbey, with free time afterwards to visit the grounds and the gift shop.  There will be free time to have lunch at the estate.  Afterwards travel to Basildon Park, for a tour and talk about the impressive Georgian mansion that served as Netherfield Park in the Keira Knightley version of Pride and Prejudice.   Dinner in the hotel.

 Friday, 9/12:  Travel to Windsor, a Royal site with many Wellington connections.  After checking into the Mercure Windsor Castle Hotel, take a guided tour of Windsor Castle, including the Waterloo Chamber; learn more about the Duke’s connections to the Royal Family. Afterwards, we’ll visit the nearby Windsor and Royal Borough Museum, which is conveniently located across the street from the hotel.  The rest of the afternoon is at leisure to explore the quaint town, do a bit of shopping in Peascod Street and have lunch on your own.  Return to the hotel for dinner .

 Saturday, 9/13: After breakfast, visit Frogmore House and Gardens for a guided tour of this property that is rarely open to the public.  Afterwards, enjoy the surrounding countryside during a forty minute, round trip Thames River cruise.  The rest of the day is at leisure to finish exploring Windsor and Eton, a perfect opportunity pick up last minute gifts and also to begin packing for the return trip home.  Farewell dinner in the hotel.

 Sunday, 9/14:  Your motor coach will transfer you to Heathrow airport for your return flight home.

Land Only Tour Pricing $2,689/£1615.00

Reservation Deadline is July 4th!

Reservations/Questions: london20@aol.com

What is Included in Tour

Porterage of 1 bag in and out of hotels                    Nine Nights Hotel Accommodations

Full English breakfast each Morning                        Six dinners in hotels as noted

Apsley House Guided Tour                                           Dinner at the Grenadier Pub

Wellington Arch Admission                                         Full Afternoon Tea at Grosvenor Hotel

Tower of London Admission                                        Royal Horseguards  Inspection

Household Cavalry Museum Admission                  Basildon Park Talk and Tour

London walking tour with Kristine & Victoria      Walmer Castle Guided Tour

Walmer Parish Church Tour and Talk                     Brighton Pavilion and Museum Admission

Regency Town House (Hove) Guided Tour             Stratfield Saye Guided Tour

Two Course Lunch at Stratfield Saye                        Highclere Castle Guided Tour

Windsor Castle & Museum Admission                     Thames Cruise

Frogmore House Guided Tour                                    Transfer to Heathrow Airport at end of Tour

 Motor Coach Services for duration of tour