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The Bishop’s Palace in Wells, Somerset

The place where the Bishop lived, next to Wells Cathedral.

Mum came to stay with us for a couple of days in the half term, so to avoid her cleaning, we went out to Wells. I thought I’d better write a review of the place so that the tourists who come here aren’t deceived! It’s the place at the top of the High Street, as you go through the big archway and follow the path to the other arch, where the prices are displayed. Incidentally, they only put up the prices there if you want to give a donation towards their tax refund; standard prices are slightly less. Actually, a lot less if you’re paying for several children where the difference is £3 each! So, for a standard ticket, it cost £5 per adult and £2 per child, which I didn’t think was too bad.

However, there wasn’t exactly a lot to see. If you are planning a visit, make sure the weather is good – because most of the attraction is outside. Also check that the chapel is open – I don’t think it always is. And my other important piece of advice is, if you’re going with children, then definiately pick up the trail for them to do. If you don’t they’ll be bored, and you’ll be finished looking around within half an hour!

The main thing you need to know is that it isn’t a palace. It isn’t a stately home. It’s an old house. The most interesting thing inside is the entrance area with the lovely big fireplace, and the chapel with its impressive pictures, but upstairs there’s a couple of rooms with portraits of previous bishops, and that’s about it. The gardens were more interesting as youi get to see the springs from which Wells gets its name. In February there weren’t many flowers to see, but it was a nice warm day, so it was still pleasant to look around. By taking our time with the kids’ quiz, we at least almost felt like we were getting our money’s worth.

The part I liked best was the huge wall left as a ruin from the original hall, and you can see that for free!

So there you go. I’ve seen it now, and I won’t be going back.

UK,
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