Ventnor Heritage Centre

"To Collect, Record and preserve the rich heritage and history of Ventnor and surrounding villages, and share it with local and wider communities"

Local History Walks |

Local History Walks

Guided walks:

We provide occasional guided walks; details are given here when we have one planned.

Walks to do on your own:

Ventnor Town Trails: a series of free printed ‘Ventnor Town Trails’ are  available  in the Heritage Centre.

Time Travel Ventnor: a series of trail boards exploring the history of Ventnor, starting outside the Heritage Centre.  For details of the trail and to download a copy of the leaflet click on the image here:

St Lawrence Trails: The St Lawrence Village Trail and the St Lawrence Coastal Trail are specially written local history trails that visitors can follow by themselves, and are available to download here (click on the images below):

Ventnor Historic (Beer) Walk: This is an historic stroll through the social history of Ventnor in the early 19th Century (click image to download):

The National Trust page on Ventnor Downs: 

This gives details several walks including what is described as ‘a short but challenging walk, taking you from Bronze Age barrows to secretive cold war underground nuclear operations’:  Ventnor Downs: Pre-history to Cold War 

 

 


Exhibitions, stories, images . . .

Paddle Steamers

In 1863 the PS (Paddle Steamer) Chancellor was wrecked attempting a landing a Ventnor Harbour pier, holed on the Lion Rock. In 1887 Southsea-Ventnor-Sandown  & Shanklin Steamboat Co started services, and in 1888: P S Dandie Dinmont , 'Ventnor's own steamer', was brought down from Scotland.  Despite a chequered career, including sinking in Portsmouth Harbour, she lasted until 1899. By 1900 there were many fine paddle steamers in Solent waters, and  most, if not all, called at Ventnor Pier, including Balmoral, Lorna Doone, and the Solent Queen. Between 1940 and 1945 many steamers had an heroic war. A lot were lost or returned in run down condition and had to be scrapped, and the 1960s saw the end of 'paddlers' although the PS Waverley can still be seen passing on her annual visits to the South coast.  

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