Attractions Near Us

Chard is close to a wealth of attractions to suit all ages.  We are surrounded by beautiful countryside and the Chard reservoir for nature lovers and bird watchers is nearby.  There are many local walks and cycle routes on the doorstep.  In addition, here are some of the many other interesting places to visit:

Forde Abbey - 3.22 miles
Founded in 1146, Forde Abbey was one of the most significant Cistercian monasteries in England during the four centuries that separated the reign of King Stephen from the Reformation. The buildings seen today were all in existence in the Middle Ages. They formed the Abbot's and monks' quarters, their kitchen, refectories, and their chapter house. The abbey church has gone, together with the guest wing and three sides of the cloisters. While the final years of so many English monasteries are remembered for their feebleness and decadence, Forde ended in a blaze of glory. Thomas Chard, the last of the thirty-two abbots, devoted much of his time and energy to repairing and reconstructing the fabric of the Abbey building.

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Barrington Court National Trust
Echoes of the past haunt this now empty Tudor manor house, so lovingly restored in the 1920s by Sir Arthur Lyle. Old farm buildings host a pottery and woodcarver, both of whom sell their wares. What were once cow yards, pens and fields have been transformed into fragrant and delightful flower gardens, their design influenced by Gertrude Jekyll. The stone-walled kitchen garden produces a variety of wonderful fruit and vegetables, which can be enjoyed in the restaurant, while the orchards provide the apples for our own cider and apple juice. This is a place to relax and refresh the senses.

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Montacute House
Montacute House is a magnificent, glittering mansion, built in the late 16th century for Sir Edward Phelips. There are many Renaissance features, and the Long Gallery, the longest of its kind in England, displays more than 60 of the finest Tudor and Elizabethan portraits from the National Portrait Gallery collection. The state rooms display a fine range of period furniture and textiles, including samplers from the Goodhart collection. Montacute's formal gardens are perfect for a stroll and include a collection of roses, mixed borders and famous wobbly hedges. Waymarked walks lead around the wider estate, which encompasses St Michael's Hill.

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Dillington House
Dillington House dates back to the sixteenth century and has been Somerset County Council's residential centre for adult education, the arts and professional development since 1950. Although Dillington House is wholly part of Somerset County Council it operates without public subsidy and is responsible for meeting all of its operating costs and overheads.

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River Cottage
It was 1998 when Hugh moved into the original River Cottage in Dorset, to start growing and rearing some of his own food. 'River Cottage' has since moved on, and has grown and developed, but we continue to stand for the same principles: less dependence on the outside world, food integrity, and the consumption of local, seasonal produce.

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Pecorama
Pecorama, set on the hillside above the picturesque fishing village of Beer is home to the world's foremost manufacturer of model railway track, PECO Streamline and PECO Setrack. On entering the famous  Model Railway Exhibition, visitors will be greeted with a display of superbly crafted model railway layouts in all the many scales and gauges produced by the company.

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Hornsbury Mill - Weddings
Hornsbury Mill is a beautifully converted example of an early 19th Century Somerset corn mill, built of local flint stone, elm wood beams and timbers with fine old hamstone mullion windows.  

The earliest record found of the Mill is a lease from 1327, which refers to “Homesbogh alias Hornysbowe”  This credits Hornsbury as being one of the earliest in the area, but it is believed that the oldest part of the existing building only dates back to 1835.

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Windwhistle Golf Club
The Windwhistle Golf course was a 9 hole course originally designed in 1932 by J.H Taylor, 5 times Open Champion. In 1955 Leonard Fisher took over the course and extended it to 18 holes after acquiring additional land.

It is kept under regular maintenance by our fantastic greenkeeper team who get involved with trimming the grass to fine lengths to create the fairways and greens on each hole and managing plants and trees around the course.

There are some outstanding views over the surrounding countryside while you play golf so be sure to take a look around you while you play.

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Chard Museum
Chard Museum is a registered charity (No. 270186) set up in 1970. It is managed by a group of Trustees who, like all the workers involved with the Museum, are unpaid volunteers. 
First registered under the Museums and Galleries Registration Scheme in 1990, it was awarded full Accreditation in April, 2006, one of the first volunteer-run museums in the South West to receive this recognition.

The Museum & Heritage Centre exhibitions have been expanded and improved steadily over the years and contain several collections of national importance including those of John Stringfellow (1799-1883), an early pioneer of powered flight, and James Gillingham (1839-1924) who was an important maker of artificial limbs.

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Jurassic Coast and Lyme Bay
Lyme Regis is a Gateway Town to the Jurassic Coast.

The seaside town of Lyme Regis nestles in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty at the point where the rugged West Dorset and East Devon coastlines meet - the heart of the Jurassic Coast.

Lyme Regis is well-known for its spectacular natural beauty and has inspired many well-known writers including Jane Austen and John Fowles. 

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Glastonbury Tor
For the pilgrim the landscape of Avalon is a treasure trove where sacred sites abound. The most obvious to the visitor is Glastonbury Tor which can be seen from a great distance rising enigmatically above the flat Summerland meadows.

There are many myths and legends associated with the Tor – it is the home of Gwyn ap Nudd, the Lord of the Underworld and King of the Fairies, and a place where the fairy folk live.

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Seaton Tramway
Seaton Tramway operates narrow gauge heritage trams between Seaton, Colyford and Colyton in East Devon's glorious Axe Valley, travelling alongside the River Axe estuary through two nature reserves and giving an unrivalled view of the abundant wading bird life.

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Hix Oyster & Fish House
Hix Oyster & Fish House overlooks the harbour in Lyme Regis and boasts the most stunning panoramic views across the Jurassic coast – this is easily one of the most picturesque spots to enjoy fresh British seafood. An informal, light and airy dining room with simple white wooden tables and chairs. Here the focus is on sourcing and serving the best seafood we can find and doing as little to it as possible so that you enjoy the real flavour of great British ingredients. The kitchen is run by head chef Phil Eagle and his team. Our daily changing menu features delights such whole cooked Dorset Crab with homemade mayonnaise, whole grilled lemon sole and monkfish cheek curry.

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