Gillingham Hotels

Mini guide to Gillingham


Located in the beautiful English county of Dorset, Gillingham is the region's most northerly town and is believed to have been home to settlers as far back as the Stone Age. However, its true historical development can be traced back to the Saxons, who made reference to it in 10th century documents. Modern day Gillingham retains many important features of its history and heritage and this, coupled with its proximity to the capital, makes it such a popular tourist town.

Besides the stunning countryside surrounding Gillingham, visitors come to see the town's museum, which is a relatively new attraction having only been completed in 1996. The museum's displays chronicle the history of the area from Saxon times up to the 20th century and there are also paintings of the town by John Constable, a feature that is especially popular with tourists.

Around Gillingham the pace of life is slow and typical of a country town. That's not to suggest that there's nothing to do here; the local leisure centre is open to all and features an indoor swimming pool, squash and badminton courts, sports halls and a fitness suite. Meanwhile, for lawn bowling fans there's a six rink indoor bowling club and outdoor bowling green. Gillingham Football Club and North Dorset Rugby Football Club both have grounds and modern club houses in the town.

Gillingham is the main shopping centre for a number of surrounding towns and villages and features a range of independent retailers as well as two large supermarkets. The town has a reasonable selection of restaurants, with an emphasis on traditional British fare, while local country pubs provide cold beer and a warm welcome to anyone looking for a pleasant evening's entertainment.

For a day out from Gillingham take a trip to nearby Shaftesbury, a town with a history and heritage as rich as Gillingham. With many historic buildings including an abbey built by King Alfred, a museum with displays of the town's key historical periods and all the charm of a traditional country town, Shaftesbury is well worth a visit.

Gillingham can be reached by car via the M3 or A303 from southern destinations or the A350 from northern locations. Gillingham Station has a direct link with London Waterloo Station for easy rail access, while Heathrow and Gatwick are the closest international airports.

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Gillingham Hotels
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