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A royal park at the heart of Windsor

04 September 2020

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One of the perks of living in our Sandhurst and Crowthorne communities is their proximity to Windsor Great Park. The 4,800-acre landmark is famous for many things, from being a historical hunting ground for the British Royals, to the iconic image of the Long Walk stretching towards Windsor Castle. Read on to find out more about these gorgeous grounds, along with some of our recommendations when visiting.  

History  

Windsor Great Park has witnessed countless historical events throughout the years, with the parkland’s story revolving around the history of the famous Windsor Castle. When the original castle was built in the 11th century by William the Conqueror, the fields in the surrounding area were used as a hunting forest for the King and the Royal family.  

By the 13th century, the borders were drawn in a more formal way to define the area as a park by King Henry III and, for the next few hundred years, ownership remained with the monarchy with it continuing to serve as a hunting ground. Throughout the 18th and 19th centuries, the park slowly transformed to a series of gardens, trails and monuments, contributed to by multiple monarchs and royals over time. Beautiful gardens, the Long Walk, the Obelisk and imported Roman ruins came into the picture, as well as the Virginia Water lake.  

During the 19th and 20th centuries, the park started welcoming the public to organised events, such as the Christmas sale for farmers and traders. Now, the park attracts visitors from all over the world. As well as it’s stunning scenery, the park plays host to numerous activities such as horse riding, carriage driving and cycling.   
 
The Long Walk and the Deer Park 

The most well-known image of Windsor Great Park is the iconic view of the Long Walk, stretching along the tree-lined avenue from Snow Hill to Windsor Castle. The Long Walk also showcases the Copper Horse statue of King George III, with the monument perfectly marking one end of the 3-mile avenue, ideal for a leisurely walk or jog and the perfect way to soak up the history of the grounds. 

Another well-known aspect of the park is the frequently spotted deer. Initially used as the Norman King’s hunting forest, the Deer Park transformed into a game hunting reserve and riding ground over the centuries, now welcoming visitors from near and far.  

Great pubs for a great park 

A good pub outing after a day at a park is almost a tradition in our society and the surrounding areas of Windsor Great Park is home to many fantastic pubs and eateries.  

Right at the gate of Windsor Great Park is the Wheatsheaf Hotel, a 17th-century hotel and pub, providing a warm atmosphere and excellent food seven days a week. The location is truly idyllic, overlooking Virginia Water in the majestic setting of Windsor Great Park. Five miles away but also worth the trip is the Dog & Partridge. As the name suggests, this is a pet-friendly pub offering a gorgeous garden, open fire and traditional English and European flavours to locals and visitors. It’s an ideal stop over after a day spent at the park running after your pets. 

Offering a choice of fine dining from its location in Old Windsor is the Oxford Blue Pub. This one-of-a-kind hidden gem is almost 200 years old with Chef Proprietor Steven Ellis, who previously worked with Jaime Oliver and Gordon Ramsay, in charge of the kitchen since 2015.  

With so much to do and explore within the park, we wouldn’t be surprised if it becomes one of your regular jaunts. Don’t forget to check the Visitor Updates when planning your day. 

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If a life of walking, exploration and seasonal sights appeals to you, why not book a private viewing at our Sandhurst and Crowthorne communities? With prices starting at £280,000 and £325,000 respectively, you could soon be starting your next chapter with us.  

Sandhurst: 01344 238138 | [email protected] 

Crowthorne: 01344 238215 | [email protected]