A few weeks ago my partner and I visited an attraction we’d not been to before and that was Hever Castle & Gardens in Kent.
Hever Castle dates back to the 13th century and later on became the childhood home of Anne Boleyn, Henry VIII’s second wife.
Portrait of Anne.
The Book of Hours Room has two of Annes beautifully printed prayer books. Both bear her inscriptions and signature.
In one prayer book she poignantly wrote “The Time will Come”.
Henry VIII stayed at Hever and would often turn up with hundreds of guests unannounced. Given that Hever is a fairly modest castle, Anne’s parents were often horrified by this and rushed to arrange everything so food and acommodation would be fit for a king.
Sadly we all know what happened to Anne Boleyn. Anne gave birth to a daughter Elizabeth I (who later became queen) but Henry wanted a son to be heir to the throne. Sadly Anne suffered several miscarriages and Henry began to court Jane Seymour.
In order to marry Seymour he needed to end his marriage to Anne. She was accused of adultery and incest both of which are unlikely. Due to being charged with these crimes against the king, she was beheaded.
Sadly Anne’s brother was also killed and her parents struggled as they fell out of the king’s favour. Henry VIII later took over Hever Castle and that’s how he later on passed it to Anne of Cleves, his fourth wife.
As well as the castle there’s stunning grounds to explore and a lake where you can hire a rowing boat. It’s the perfect place to spend a summer’s day!
Let me know if you’ve ever been to Hever Castle and Gardens. I’d love to return in late summer/autumn.