Explore Old Basing in Hampshire
- Credit: Mike Cattell / Flickr
As one of the most sought after villages on the outskirts of Basingstoke, Old Basing has lots to offer people moving to the area as well as those stopping to discover its historic roots.
Most noted for...Its fascinating history. The village shot to national prominence in 1645 when Oliver Cromwell led his troops in the English Civil War. There was a two-year siege of Basing House, home of the Paulet family. The house is now undergoing works thanks to a £50,000 Heritage Lottery Grant, which means we can all benefit from a new museum as well as an exhibition presenting and explaining archaeological finds relating to the mansion’s golden age; namely from the Tudor and Stuart periods to 1645. Hopefully, the works will be complete by this summer.
While you’re here...Explore Basing Fen. A Countryside Heritage Site, this is an area of peatland forming the headwaters of the River Loddon. Found between the railway line and Redbridge Lane, these permanently wet grounds are home to a number of different flora and fauna including the Southern Marsh Orchid and the Loddon Lily.
Stop for…a scrumptious snack courtesy of The Street Bakeshop. On a summer’s day, the tables outside are filled with people enjoying homemade cakes and sandwiches. You can also pick up freshly baked loaves and speciality bread.
But try not to...Miss the beautiful Riverside walk along the banks of the River Loddon, past the former manor fish ponds and visit Basing House, with its ruins, a Tudor barn and beautiful gardens there are lots to see. Cross the Canal Bridge over the old London to Basingstoke Canal. The navvies are said to have found treasure as they cut through the ruins 200 years ago.
Eat at: Traditional meets contemporary at Bartons Mill. With cosy nooks and crannies, it’s a perfect atmosphere whatever the occasion. A delicious a la carte menu tempts diners offering an English meets Mediterranean flavour. Having just been completely refurbished inside and out diners can now enjoy the stunning outdoor seating area overlooking beautifully landscaped gardens.
Drink at: The 16th century The Crown pub in the centre of the village is a great place for a drink in the summer with a decked area at the front (so you can watch village life go by) and a pretty lawned garden at the back. There is both a bar and restaurant menu available if you fancy a bite and the real ales change every so often so there’s always something new to try.
Stay at: Old Basing Guest House is on London Road in the heart of the village and offers contemporary accommodation with wifi, LCD TV and either a continental or English breakfast. If you’re in the area on business, you can even have breakfast ‘on the move’.