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On Friday 29th April, come down for an enjoyable day at Beaulieu to celebrate the Royal Wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton.

For the patriotic visitor, tours will be on offer throughout the day to explore the historical links between the Beaulieu Estate and the Royal Family, which date back to the very beginnings of the Estate in 1204, when King John gave a gift of land to the Cistercian monks for them to build Beaulieu Abbey. On a tour, learn about the connections between British Royalty and the incumbents of the Beaulieu Estate, including Charles II from whom the current Montagu family are descended.

In 1899, Edward, Prince of Wales, had one of his first rides in a motor car with Lord John Montagu. More recently, in 1985, to celebrate the centenary of the motor car, HRH Prince Charles opened ‘Wheels’ the high-tech pod ride in the National Motor Museum. In 2005, Princess Anne opened the Secret Army Exhibition, telling the story of Beaulieu’s wartime role as a training ground for secret agents.

At the end of your tour, why not toast the newly married Kate and Wills in the Brabazon Restaurant, whilst enjoying a special Royal Cream Tea as well as a wide selection of home-made cakes and pastries, and speciality teas.

We also have plenty available for those visitors wishing to escape the fanfare surrounding the Royal Wedding. Visit the National Motor Museum to see the latest exhibition, ‘Feats of Endurance’, showcasing vehicles that stretch the boundaries of motoring endurance. The museum has over 250 vehicles telling the story of motoring, from World Land Speed Record Breakers to F1 racers. Take a wander through Jack Tucker’s garage, which recreates the sights, sounds and smells of a typical 1930s country garage, and ride on ‘Wheels’, a fascinating journey through 100 years of motoring history.

Currently wowing Beaulieu’s visitors is the World of Top Gear, featuring actual vehicles used by presenters Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May for some of their most ambitious challenges on the TV show over the years. The James Bond exhibition is also well worth a visit, displaying genuine vehicles and memorabilia that have starred in the unforgettable films.

Younger visitors can enjoy the Mini Car Circuit and Mini Motor PlayTrail, whilst the Monorail and open-topped London Bus are an exciting way for everyone to explore the grounds. Don’t miss the stunning artwork on display in the Beaulieu gardens.

Beaulieu will be open from 10am to 5pm, and free parking is available on site. For more information, please telephone 01590 612345, or visit http://www.beaulieu.co.uk

THE NATIONAL MOTOR MUSEUM AT BEAULIEU HAS DEDICATED PARKING FOR MOTORHOMES.

Christopher Macgowan

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