Explore the medieval buildings of Coventry’s cathedral quarter before arriving at Stoneleigh Abbey. Tour the Regency buildings of Royal Leamington Spa before calling at Beddesley Clinton estate. Explore Packwood House and Polesworth Abbey before arriving at Nuneaton. Visit the Midland Air Museum to see the historic collection of aeroplanes.
Coventry is now the UK's 2021 City of Culture in-waiting. The cathedral quarter is where most visitors head for at the start of their tour. It's where the nicest old medieval and 18th-century streets are. And of course the old - and new – cathedrals.
Originally a Cistercian monastic house in 1154, it was converted at the Dissolution into a comfortable family home. The mansion house is comprised of two halves; the first, made of red sandstone, is a fine example of a Jacobean house, built from the ruins of the monastery, the second is in the Baroque style. The extensive grounds are being brought back to their original splendour.
Royal Leamington Spa
Head for the Royal Pump Rooms to learn about the history of the town and the spa. Then wander the wide streets with the Regency buildings adding a touch of glamour to the many independent shops before relaxing in the towns vast parks like Jephson Gardens or Victoria Park.
This National Trust property is an intimate estate with 500 years of history of the Ferrers family. The current house dates from the late 1500s.The house was a sanctuary not only for the Ferrers family, but also for persecuted Catholics who were hidden from priest hunters in its secret hiding places during the 1590s.
The house was originally built in the 16th century, yet its interiors were extensively restored between the First and Second World Wars by Graham Baron Ash to create a fascinating 20th-century evocation of domestic Tudor architecture. The house contains a fine collection of 16th-century textiles and furniture, and the gardens have renowned herbaceous borders and a famous collection of yews.
Originally founded in the 9th century although apart from the 12th-century Abbey church, now the parish church of St Editha, and the 14th-century gatehouse and the restored ruins of the cloister very little remains visible. The Gatehouse is reputedly where William Shakespeare went to school.
Like so many other great country houses, it was founded in Henry II's reign as a monastery but suffered dissolution 1536. During Queen Elizabeth I's reign it was totally rebuilt it in the Elizabethan style. The gardens at Arbury are a good example of the informal style of landscape gardening with lakes, lawns and trees as well as flower borders nearer the Hall.
Midland Air Museum
Here you will see a unique aeronautical collection founded by enthusiasts. Examples include the Vulcan bomber and Argosy freighter it also houses the Sir Frank Whittle Jet Heritage Centre.