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Chalke Valley History Festival

The Daily Mail Chalke Valley History Festival 2019
Two days of literary and living history
Set in the glorious Wiltshire downland
Guided tours of Wilton House and Salisbury Cathedral
From the Mercure White Hart Hotel, Salisbury
28 June – 1 July 2019 (3 nights)

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Now a well-established and renowned literary festival hidden deep in the Chalke Valley surrounded by some of the most beautiful countryside in Wiltshire, this very successful history literary festival has taken the country by storm.  It is the largest festival dedicated to history. A series of top-class literary events offering a unique blend of talks, discussions & debates alongside a vast living history of through-the-ages encampments and a stunning warbird air show, it is a celebration of the past like no other. The Chalke Valley History Festival plays host to many of our most popular, passionate and leading historians.

At this stage we do not have the exact programme but will ensure the tickets and as many options as possible are given for you to choose 5 lectures during the day over the Saturday and Sunday morning.   Possible speakers may include Max Hastings, Philip Collins, Mark Urban, Jesse Norman, Andrew Roberts, Ian Hislop and Dan Snow to name a few.  The programme should be available from mid-February.

The venue is enriched with a giant encampment of living history through the ages, from Romans to the Second World War with displays by some of the very best re-enactors and historical interpreters in the country.  Throughout the day there are also short historic aircraft displays.

Stay at the 4 star Mercure White Hart Hotel in Salisbury, adjacent to the Cathedral Close in the city centre.  The hotel is ideally located for enjoying the city and visiting other heritage venues.  Arrive at the hotel check in from 2 pm on Friday 28 June – There will be guided tour of Salisbury Cathedral departing from the hotel to walk across the Cathedral Close at 3.45 pm and then perhaps you might wish to join choral evensong at 5.30 in the Cathedral.   Welcome drink at 7 pm followed by dinner.

Saturday 29 and Sunday 30 June:  Minibus/taxis will take you on both days to and from the Festival – the exact times to be confirmed but depending on the programme there will be an early dinner at the Festival on Saturday and returning to the hotel in time for dinner after the Wilton House visit on the Sunday.  In addition there are numerous stalls offering locally produced fare for purchasing for lunch during the day.  Saturday evening is also D-Day Dance with music and lots of additional live entertainment!  On Sunday afternoon the coach will depart from the Festival at 3 pm to visit Wilton House for a guided tour of one the great treasure houses of this country and then returning to the hotel if time allows a quick early evening visit to Horatio's Garden at Salisbury Hospital.

Monday 1 July:  Check out of your rooms before 11 am. If you would like to explore Salisbury further we would also recommend visiting within the Cathedral Close the Salisbury Museum with its Turner paintings, Mompesson House (NT) and in the city the lovely parish church of St Thomas’s.  An itinerary with lectures and more precise timings for the days will be sent in spring next year.


“I’ve been to literary festivals from Cornwall to Orkney and none of them match the buzz, fun and enthusiasm generated by the Chalke Valley History Festival. Our history is celebrated at Chalke Valley, it educates, shocks, amuses and inspires” – Dan Snow

The tour package inclusions and exclusions at a glance
What is included in this tour?Items that are included in the cost of tour price.
  • 3 nights’ hotel accommodation and breakfast
  • 2 dinner hotel 1 dinner festival (set menu)
  • Tickets for 5 literary events
  • Transfers to and from Festival
  • Entry and tours Cathedral and Wilton House
  • Transfers and Heritage Touring representative


Price per person: £590

Single supplement: £50 per night (3 nights)
Double rooms for sole occupancy

Non-refundable deposit: £175 pp


Hotel onsite parking: £6.50 per night

Train Station – Salisbury

Please note: White Hart Hotel due to the historic nature of the building has no lift we have asked for first floor rooms where possible

Mercure White Hart Hotel, Salisbury

Each tour, unless stated otherwise in the tour details, includes welcome reception, hotel accommodation, dinner and breakfast, entry fees, guided tours and tickets where appropriate,  lunches and refreshments where stated, professional guide and executive coaching. 

You are asked to make your own travel arrangements to join each break at the hotel listed.  We are happy to give advice and where possible organise shared taxis from a rail station to the hotel and where appropriate the coach will finish a tour at the station. However we cannot take responsibility for individual travel bookings.

We strongly recommend that you take out holiday insurance for protection against any cancellation charges, loss of deposit and other eventualities even for holidays in the United Kingdom and for emergency medical expenses and injury, death, repatriation home if travelling abroad.   Heritage Touring does not offer or sell insurance but can give assistance in locating travel insurance companies. Travel insurance is mandatory for all passengers travelling abroad.