History of Christchurch
Christchurch began as a Saxon village and sat between the river Stour and river Avon. Alfred the Great fortified Christchurch by making use of the sea on one side and the two rivers. An earth rampart was erected on the remaining side. However, it was known as Tweoxneam and the name was changed to Christchurch when the church was build in the 11th century. They tried to build a church at St Catherines Hill but each morning they would return to the site to find their building work had been undone. They moved the site and when a beam that had been cut too short was then found to have been lengthened, they changed the name to Christhchurch.
Things to see in Christchurch
The Normans built a small abbey (priory) at Christchurch which dominates the landscape all around, and a castle was build in 1150 by Lord of the manor of which the ruins are still evident next to Christchurch Priory.
Things to do in Christchurch
The old work house of Christchurch, The Red House Museum, regularly has an exhibition or event on, and if not, the gardens are wonderful to sit in to enjoy the peace and history that you can see around. Christchurch Quay takes you along the river from which you can feed the swans and take grandchildren to the newly updated play park. If you wish to enjoy Christchurch river with a glass of wine, coffee, cake or meal the Boat House is very special.
Christchurch Harbour is great for water sports and spotting rare breeds of birds and the odd seal.
Mudeford Quay offers breathtaking views southwards of the Solent and the Isle of Wight.
From Christchurch Harbour you will be able to see the dramatic Hengistbury Head .