Milestones Museum Basingstoke (Image credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/38737399%40N03/5360544622)

Milestones Museum Basingstoke

Festival Place Basingstoke

Festival Place Basingstoke

Basingstoke in north east Hampshire is a large, modern town with fantastic shopping and entertainment. The big Festival Place shopping centre has hundreds of shops, and more shops and restaurants line the streets around Festival Place and at The Mall just the other side of the town. Anvil Arts are the largest performing arts organisation in Hampshire and in Basingstoke they run The Anvil concert hall, The Haymarket Theatre and The Forge. Catch a whole host of drama, dance, live music and comedy performance at these venues. Cinemas are also within Festival Place shopping centre and the town centre has a plentiful choice of lively pubs, bars and clubs.

Basingstoke has a long-standing history. It was mentioned in the Domesday Book and right up until the 1950s it was a small market town. Traditional industries included cloth making, malting and brewing. Historic buildings are still evident, particularly in the London Street area where the architecture dates from the seventeenth to twentieth century. Market Place is the historic centre where you will find the Willis Museum in the old Town Hall, a museum famously home to the oldest wedding cake in the world! Exhibitions on local history are inside, and the museum hosts talks, workshops and family friendly activities. In Jane Austen's time Basingstoke was a main social centre and she is known to have attended social gatherings at the Assembly Rooms (now a bank in the Market Place marked by a Blue Plaque).

Just to the north of the town sit some ancient and grand historic sites. Take a tour of The Vyne (National Trust), a Tudor country manor house visited several times by Henry VIII. A little further north you'll also find the spectacular remains of the Roman City of Silchester. The defensive walls here are widely considered to be the country's best preserved Roman Walls.

Milestones Museum

Milestones Museum is just one mile outside of Basingstoke town centre, located at Leisure Park. It's a living history museum with a network of old cobbled nineteenth and early twentieth century streets. Recreated buildings include a working pub where you can enjoy a pint, period houses, a 1940s sweetshop, a post office and a seaside Penny Arcade taking old 1d penny coins on Milestones Pier. Many restored vintage vehicles are also on display and the museum hosts great family events throughout the year. There's plenty of opportunity to dress up like a Victorian and the old Victorian Winchester Chesil railway station onsite has an authentic ticket office and a miniature railway. Milestones is a magical experience for adults and children alike, and also holds the Thorneycroft collection. Thorneycroft were once one of Basingstoke's main employers involved in shipbuilding and vehicle manufacture. Various Thorneycroft vehicles and original factory machinery are on display.

Leisure & Arts

Basingstoke's Leisure Park sits on the same complex as the Milestones Museum along with a brand new Airkix sky diving attraction and a tenpin bowling alley. Aquadrome is also here with its wide range of leisure facilities including a 25m competition swimming pool, a 20m pool with a feature adjustable floor and a lagoon area with three large flumes. Other highlights include an ice rink, bingo, a multiplex cinema and a gym and fitness studio. Pink and Green buses run regularly to the Leisure Park from Basingstoke Station.

The town's exceptional arts scene features the three venues - The Haymarket Theatre, The Anvil and The Forge. The Anvil is an acclaimed concert hall with excellent acoustics. Orchestral/ classical music performances regularly feature here as well as live jazz, country, folk, popular music and comedy. The recently refurbished Haymarket Theatre in the town centre first opened as the Corn Exchange in 1864. Today you can catch a mix of drama, musicals, live music and children's theatre here. The Forge hosts live music performances ranging from folk to classical string quartet and blues.

Accommodation in Basingstoke

  • Basingstoke   (1.6 miles from the centre of Basingstoke)
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    £25
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    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 190 reviews
    Rating from 190 reviews
    Well appointed & newly refurbished Basingstoke hotel with ensuite double & family guest rooms. Free Car Parking, 30 minutes free Wi-Fi, flexible check in/ out times by arrangement.
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 190 reviews
    Rating from 190 reviews
  • Basingstoke   (1.1 miles from the centre of Basingstoke)
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    £137
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 342 reviews
    Rating from 342 reviews
    Located in Basingstoke, Holiday Inn Basingstoke is in the suburbs and convenient to Viables Crafts Centre and The Anvil. This family-friendly hotel is within close proximity of ...
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 342 reviews
    Rating from 342 reviews
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  • Basingstoke   (0.4 miles from the centre of Basingstoke)
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    £366
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 1 reviews
    Rating from 1 reviews
    High specification, fully furnished business apartment close to the town centre, railway and transport links. Quality accommodation for the discerning visitor. Apartment is deco...
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 1 reviews
    Rating from 1 reviews
  • Basingstoke   (2.2 miles from the centre of Basingstoke)
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    £85
    Per Room Per Night
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 18 reviews
    Rating from 18 reviews
    Basingstoke Lodge is just a 2-minute drive from Basingstoke town centre and offers well-equipped rooms, cooked breakfasts, free Wi-Fi and parking. All bedrooms are equiped wi...
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 18 reviews
    Rating from 18 reviews
  • Hook   (5.1 miles from the centre of Basingstoke)
    Prices from
    £299
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 1231 reviews
    Rating from 1231 reviews
    Located in Hook, Tylney Hall is close to Odiham Castle and West Green House Garden. This 4-star hotel is within the vicinity of Stratfield Saye House and Wellington Country Park...
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  • Near Tadley   (4.2 miles from the centre of Basingstoke)
    Prices from
    £79
    Per room per night
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 17 reviews
    Rating from 17 reviews
    All rooms have en-suite shower & wc, central heating, tea & coffee making facilities, broadband internet, remote control tv s Quiet rural location just 5 miles from B...
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 17 reviews
    Rating from 17 reviews
  • Basingstoke   (0.7 miles from the centre of Basingstoke)
    Prices from
    £40
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    Established in 1988, Wessex Guest House has warm, clean, hotel quality rooms at an affordable price. It is situated a 10 mintues walk away from Basingstoke town centre The Anvi...
     
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  • Hook   (7.4 miles from the centre of Basingstoke)
    Prices from
    £40
    Per person B&B (2 sharing)
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 197 reviews
    Rating from 197 reviews
    Set in a 15th-century building, The New Inn features a traditional restaurant, an ale bar and free Wi-Fi. Surrounded by Hampshire countryside, the inn is a 20-minute drive from ...
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 197 reviews
    Rating from 197 reviews
  • Newbury   (7.7 miles from the centre of Basingstoke)
    Prices from
    £59
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 71 reviews
    Rating from 71 reviews
    Located in Newbury (Kingsclere), The George and Horn is within the vicinity of 4 Kingdoms Adventure Park and Sandham Memorial Chapel. This hotel is within the vicinity of Highcl...
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 71 reviews
    Rating from 71 reviews
  • Basingstoke   (0.9 miles from the centre of Basingstoke)
    Prices from
    £97
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 1093 reviews
    Rating from 1093 reviews
    Located in Basingstoke, Hilton Basingstoke is convenient to Festival Place and The Anvil. This 4-star hotel is within close proximity of Viables Crafts Centre and Milestones Mus...
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 1093 reviews
    Rating from 1093 reviews