Why is Berkshire a Royal County?
The Royal County of Berkshire is in South East England and is literally dripping with royal history and herritage.
With a very strong connection to the British monarchy stretching from almost a millenia ago until the present day, its no wonder that it enjoys its regal title of the "Royal County of Berkshire"
The region has played a pivotal role in British royal traditions and heritage, and it is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in exploring the fascinating history of the British monarchy.
So, let's dive in and find out all about this amazing county, and discover exactly why it's the only English county that warrants the Royal title.
Geography and Location
Berkshire is located to the west of London and is bordered by Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Surrey, and Hampshire.
The county is known for its picturesque countryside, rivers, and towns. Windsor and Maidenhead, Reading, and Slough are the largest towns in the region, each with their unique attractions and architecture.
Berkshire has several natural highlights, such as the Ridgeway, Berkshire Downs, Bucklebury Common, and Windsor Great Park which is a Royal Park covering over 2,020 hectares.
Windsor Castle is perhaps the most famous of Berkshire's royal connections. It is an official Royal Residence of Her Majesty The Queen, and it has been the home of British monarchs for over 900 years.
The castle is the oldest and largest occupied castle globally and is where the Queen spends most of her weekends. It has hosted numerous state occasions, including the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in 2018.
One of the most popular events at Windsor Castle is the Changing of the Guard ceremony. It is a military tradition that has been a part of the British monarchy for over 350 years.
It usually takes place every other day in winter and every day in summer, weather permitting. The ceremony is an elaborate display of British pomp and circumstance and involves the guards marching from the town to the castle.
Eton College is one of the oldest and most prestigious schools in the United Kingdom.
It's located in the town of Eton, near Windsor, and has been educating boys since 1440.
It has a reputation as a school for the British elite, and many members of the royal family have attended the institution.
Eton's most famous event is the annual Fourth of June celebrations. It is a tradition that began in 1856 and involves a procession of scholars in their formal clothes marching through the town to a service in College Chapel. The procession is followed by cricket, rowing, and other sports.
Royal Ascot is a world-famous horse racing event that takes place every June at Ascot Racecourse, Berkshire. The event is attended by members of the royal family, who arrive in horse-drawn carriages. The Queen and other members of the royal family watch the racing from the Royal Box.
The races are not the only highlight of Royal Ascot. It is also a popular social event, with a strict dress code.
The traditional outfits worn by the women in attendance, including the famous hats, add to the spectacle of the event. The races are also an opportunity for the public to mingle with the royals and experience the traditions of British horse racing.
Other Royal Residences and Estates
Frogmore House is a royal retreat located within the grounds of Windsor Castle. It has been the home of several members of the royal family, including Queen Victoria.
The house is rarely open to the public, but it was opened for three days in 2018 to mark Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's wedding. The couple held their wedding reception at the house.
Visitors to Frogmore House can see the paintings and furnishings that reflect the lives of the royals who have lived there. The mausoleum in the house's gardens is the final resting place of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert.
Savill Garden is a renowned horticultural attraction in Berkshire. It is located within Windsor Great Park and covers over 35 acres. It is known for its impressive displays of flowers, shrubs, and trees, and it has been connected to the British royalty for centuries.
Queen Mary was a keen gardener and commissioned the development of the garden in the 1930s. Today, visitors can enjoy the beauty of the garden and learn about the history of British horticulture.
Savill Garden is also home to the Royal Landscape, which has over 1,000 acres of gardens, woodlands, and open spaces.
Berkshire's History and Royal Events
The Magna Carta
The Magna Carta is one of the most famous documents in British history. It was signed at Runnymede, Berkshire in 1215. The document was a historic agreement between King John and his barons that sought to limit the monarch's power and establish the rule of law.
Visitors to Runnymede can see several monuments that commemorate the signing of the Magna Carta. The Magna Carta Memorial, created by Sir Edward Lutyens, is an impressive structure that overlooks the River Thames.
The Jurors artwork, created by Hew Locke, provides a contemporary interpretation of the Magna Carta's legacy.
Berkshire has been the location for several royal weddings, including that of Prince Charles and Princess Diana. The most recent royal wedding to take place in Berkshire was that of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in 2018. The couple held their wedding ceremony at St. George's Chapel in Windsor Castle before proceeding to their wedding reception at Frogmore House.
The royal weddings are not just significant events for the royal family. They are also an opportunity for the residents of Berkshire to participate in the celebrations and showcase the region's beauty and hospitality.
Berkshire is home to several notable royal burial sites. The Royal Mausoleum at Frogmore is where Queen Victoria and Prince Albert are buried. St. George's Chapel in Windsor Castle is the final resting place of several British monarchs, including King Henry VIII and King George VI.
As of 2022 of course, now Queen Elizabeth the Second and Phince Phillip are also laid to rest here at Windsor.
Tourism and Economy
Royal Tourism in Berkshire
Berkshire's royal attractions bring in millions of visitors each year, providing a significant boost to the local economy. The region's tourism industry is linked to its royal heritage, which attracts visitors from all over the world. Tourists can explore Windsor Castle, watch the Changing of the Guard ceremony, visit Eton College, and see the Magna Carta Memorial, among other things.
Local businesses and their connections to the royal family
Several local businesses in Berkshire have strong connections to the British royal family. For example, Hunter Boot Ltd has been a supplier of Wellington boots to the royal family since 1977. Other businesses have been granted a Royal Warrant of Appointment, which means they provide products or services directly to the monarchy.
Berkshire's Royal County status is due to its long-standing connections to the British monarchy.
The region has played a pivotal role in British royal traditions and heritage, and it is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in exploring the fascinating history of the British monarchy. Visitors to the region can explore Windsor Castle, attend Royal Ascot, and see the Magna Carta Memorial, among other things.
Furthermore, visitors can enjoy world-class hospitality services such as bedrooms, meeting & conferencing, team building, weddings, events, food & beverage, health & fitness, and serviced offices by staying at one of Active Hospitality's exquisite hotels in Berkshire.
Easthampstead Park | Stay
To explore the Royal County of Berkshire and experience its royal connections and attractions, book your stay at one of Active Hospitality's hotels in Berkshire, such as Easthampstead Park or Gorse Hill. Visit our website or click on the "Book Hotel Rooms HERE" link to make your reservation today!
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What is Berkshire's connection to the British monarchy?
Berkshire is known as a Royal County because of its significant connections to the British monarchy. Several royal residences and estates are located in the region, including Windsor Castle, Frogmore House, and St. George's Chapel. The region has played a vital role in British royal heritage and traditions.
2. What events take place in Berkshire that are connected to the British monarchy?
Berkshire has several events that are connected to the British monarchy. The most well-known of these events is Royal Ascot, which takes place at Ascot Racecourse every June and is attended by members of the royal family. Visitors can also attend the Changing of the Guard ceremony at Windsor Castle and explore the Royal Landscape at Windsor Great Park.
3. What are some notable landmarks or attractions in Berkshire that are connected to the British monarchy?
Berkshire has numerous landmarks and attractions that are connected to the British monarchy, including:
● Windsor Castle
● Eton College
● Frogmore House
● St. George's Chapel
● Royal Ascot
● Magna Carta Memorial
4. Are there any local businesses in Berkshire with connections to the royal family?
Several local businesses in Berkshire have connections to the royal family. One notable example is the Hunter Boot Ltd, which holds a Royal Warrant of Appointment and has supplied Wellington boots to the royal family since 1977. Many other local businesses, such as those granted a Royal Warrant or supplying products and services to the monarchy, have strong ties to the British royal family.
5. Which Active Hospitality hotels can I stay at in Berkshire to experience the region's royal connections?
To immerse yourself in Berkshire's royal heritage, you can stay at one of Active Hospitality's hotels in the region. Easthampstead Park and Gorse Hill are two such exquisite hotels offering world-class hospitality services, including bedrooms, meeting & conferencing, team building, weddings, events, food & beverage, health & fitness, and serviced offices. Visit their website or click the "Book Hotel Rooms HERE" link to make your reservation.
6. What role has Berkshire played in British royal history?
Berkshire has played a significant role in British royal history, with events such as the signing of the Magna Carta in 1215 and numerous royal weddings and burials taking place within the region. Windsor Castle and other royal estates in Berkshire have been essential to the monarchy's story, and tourists from all over the world visit the area to experience this illustrious history.