A History of Somerset & Somerset at War with Andrew Powell-Thomas


Residential course

Three Day Course

Two Day Course

Andrew Powell-Thomas

13 February 2023 to 17 February 2023

£352 Non-residential week fee, from £858 Single bedroom or shared occupancy (additional travel supplement £60)

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This course is part of Dillington Discovery Winter week.

Famous for its rolling countryside, Somerset is a county full of natural beauty. From its glorious beaches and jagged coastline to its hills and vast open spaces, you could be forgiven for thinking of Somerset as merely a rural county.

But it has so much more to offer! From the historic castles and abbeys that are dotted across the region, to informative museums and bustling towns that were once industrial centres, Somerset has a remarkable history that includes a prominent involvement during the armed conflicts of recent times. Discover the history of Somerset.

A history of Somerset (Monday 13th – Wednesday 15th February 2023)
50 Gems of Somerset:
Discover some of the famous, and lesser-known, attractions of Somerset; from beaches to buildings and coastline to castles – join the author on a whistle stop overview of Somerset!

Religious Somerset:
A look at some of the many religious sites of Somerset, from centuries old pilgrimage sites to village churches.

Castles of Somerset:
Explore the history of Somerset’s castles. In the aftermath of the Norman Conquest of 1066, a number of castles were built across the county. Over the centuries these were modified and improved, some eventually falling into ruin and others surviving and still standing today.

Industrial Somerset:
Examine Somerset’s industrial past, and how things have changed over the last century.

Buildings of Somerset:
Uncover the rich array of grand buildings that inspire and enthral to this day.

Somerset Through Time:
Take a step back in time with a look at the changing face of everyday Somerset over the last one hundred years.

Gems of Somerset:
A trip to two of author Andrew Powell-Thomas’s gems of Somerset.
Depart Dillington 9:30, arrive at Mells village 10:30. Part guided walk, part self-exploration. Packed Lunch.
Depart Mells 13:00, arrive at Wells 13:30 for a look around Wells Cathedral / Wells itself.
Depart 15:00, arrive back at Dillington 16:00.

Somerset At War (Thursday 16th & Friday 17th February 2023)
Memorials of Somerset:
A poignant look at how Somerset remembered its fallen in the aftermath of the Great War. Understanding the process of remembrance at the time, and the range of different village memorials that exist.

Somerset in World War Two:
Exploring the wide ranging, and often surprising, role of Somerset in the Second World War. From evacuees to factories; airfields to prisoner of war camps, and defences to bombing raids.

The West Country’s Last Line of Defence – Taunton Stop Line:
An in-depth look at the role and locations of the Second World War Taunton Stop Line. This was a 50-mile defensive ‘wall’ built across Somerset, Dorset and Devon in 1940, to repel a potential invasion.

A Visit to the Taunton Stop Line (Friday Morning):
An opportunity to explore part of this relic from the Second World War. A morning visit to Donyatt Halt to see the defences. Depart Dillington 9:30, arrive 10:00. Leave 12:00, arrive back at Dillington 12:30 for lunch.

You can attend all week or separately. Monday & Wednesday – Non-resident fee £225. (additional travel supplement £30). Thursday to Friday Lunch – Non-resident fee £127. (additional travel supplement £30). All Week Non-resident fee £352.  (additional travel supplement £60). Residential Fees From: £858. (additional travel supplement £60)

Course runs from Dinner on Sunday to Lunch on Friday.

Tutor information

Andrew Powell-Thomas is a Somerset based author who writes children’s fiction, military history and local heritage books. He is the editor of Over the Top, the children’s magazine associated with the Great War Group; has done Television work for the Yesterday Channel and appeared a number of times on radio. Further details about Andrew and his books can be found on his website www.andrewpowell-thomas.co.uk or on his social media channels.

Your questions answered

All course participants will be sent further instructions prior to the course date.

Please see our Terms and conditions for more information.