HISTORY/CULTURE


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MAGNA CARTA - PRIVATE TOUR
Celebrating the 800th anniversary of the template of modern democracy.


Day tour from London in private vehicle with accredited driver-guide.
For couples, families or small private groups (up to 7 persons). Subject to availability.
Timings: 9am-6pm. Pick-up and drop-off at any central London hotel or residence.
Prices: 1-2 passengers = £640.00; 3-4 pass = £680.00; 5-7 pass = £720.00.
Any admission fees are extra and usually payable on entry. Booking enquiries.



ITINERARY:

What is Magna Carta?

After an initial fast-track out from London, this tour examines the story behind Magna Carta, the famous document which is celebrating its 800th anniversary. Literally meaning great charter, the original version was drawn up to limit the powers of an unpopular monarch, known to posterity as 'Bad King John'. Many kings in English history have been given nicknames to reflect a facet of their nature, so the 'Bad' bit might give us a little flavour of what this man was about! What did he do wrong? Well, in short, he taxed people to the hilt (never a popular policy). The poor English peasant got even poorer. It may come as no surprise that the legend of Robin Hood originates during King John's reign (it is believed the infamous Sheriff of Nottingham was specifically targeted in the Magna Carta). But John taxed the powerful barons too, and that really set the wheels in motion. A civil war followed, and such was the barons' fury that they even invited the king of France to take the English throne (yes, things got that desperate!).

Why is Magna Carta important?
The barons finally forced King John to apply his seal to the document, but it took many subsequent years of civil war and wrangling before Magna Carta was fully accepted by the monarchy and enshrined for posterity. Such was its impact on the voice of Liberty that it became her rallying cry for modern democracy. Written in Latin, some of the most fundamental human rights are enshrined in the Magna Carta, such as ‘Nullus Liber Homo’: 'To no free man is justice denied', in other words, justice for all. To the Founding Fathers of America, it was upheld as a pioneering example of constitutional rights. To the British, it signalled the death knell of medieval despotism with its legacy: Who is in ultimate charge? Not the King, not the Church, but the Law.

RUNNYMEDE
First on our Magna Carta trail, we drive about 20 miles west of central London to Runnymede water-meadow on the banks of the River Thames. Here we take a close-up look at Magna Carta Island, where it is said John was finally forced to agree to the document. Then we visit the Magna Carta Memorial, a domed classical temple built by the American Bar Association to commemorate this symbol of liberty under law. Nearby is the Air Forces Memorial and British memorial to the assassinated President John F. Kennedy which is actually American territory.
● Usually open daily.
● Free entry.
● Your guide will conduct the tour.

WINDSOR CASTLE
Next, we visit Windsor Castle. King John was besieged in the castle by his rebellious barons brandishing their charter, and in the words of historian A.L Rowse, 'rode out everyday to receive bitter drafts of the medicine he so richly deserved'. Windsor remains the premier royal residence in England. First built in 1080 by John's Great, Great Grandfather, William the Conqueror, it is the largest and oldest continually inhabited castle in the world. Highlights include the magnificent George Chapel, the opulent State Apartments and the incredible Queen Mary's Doll's House.
● Usually open daily.
● Tickets must be pre-booked.
● The state apartments are audio-guided. Your guide will conduct the rest of the tour.

SALISBURY CATHEDRAL
Finally, to the Salisbury, once a Roman garrison, now a thriving market town. In its centre is the stunning Salisbury Cathedral, the tallest medieval building in the world and inspiration for Ken Follett's international bestseller 'Pillars of the Earth'. The environs have been described by the writer Bill Bryson as the most beautiful place in England. After a tour inside this magnificent building, we visit the Chapter House just off the cloisters. Here we find our holy grail, a rare surviving copy of the original Magna Carta.
● Usually open daily.
● Admission payable on entry.
● Your guide will conduct the tour.



TOUR PRICES:

FULL DAY PRIVATE TOUR FROM LONDON (9am-6pm)

PRICE
(not including entrance fees)

TOUR BY PRIVATE CAR (1-2 passengers)

£640.00
(+ any entrance fees)

TOUR BY PRIVATE CAR (3-4 passengers)

£680.00
(+ any entrance fees)

TOUR BY PRIVATE CAR (5-7 passengers)

£720.00
(+ any entrance fees)



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BOOKING POLICY AND NOTES:
Bookings are dealt with on a one-to-one basis via e-mail only.
To secure your preferred date we recommend booking well in advance.
We do not accept bookings with less than 72 hours notice.
All tours subject to availability. Booking will not go ahead until availability is confirmed.
Tour is not guaranteed to go ahead until 100% of payment is received.
We do not usually pre-book tickets for attractions. We recommended these are paid
  for at the gate on the day. In circumstances where pre-booking is the only option for
  attractions, tickets must be paid for in advance and are non-refundable.
Administration fees may be added for extensive itineraries or advance ticket booking.
We do not arrange flights, accommodation, travel tickets or tickets for special events.
For full policies, terms & conditions click here.



PRACTICAL TOUR INFO:

Important note: 'Private tour' means a privately chartered guided tour. It does not entail exclusive private access. We do not offer tours to individuals wishing to join a larger group (for this you require a scheduled coach tour operator).

Timings: A recommended start time ensures the tour runs to schedule. The duration of this tour is timed from pick-up to drop-off and usually includes built-in stops for photo opportunities, facilities, and a one-hour lunch break.

Pick-up/drop-off: You can be picked-up for your tour anywhere in the central London area, whether at your hotel, place of residence, or venue of your request. The same applies as a dropping-off point after the tour. Tours from London may use fastest routes.

Vehicle: Our typical vehicle is a luxury people carrier. Usually a high-spec 7-passenger Mercedes, with leather seats, armrests, headrests, air-conditioning, tinted windows, front and rear electric sunroof, sliding passenger doors and luggage space.

Driver-Guide: Our presentable, professional and friendly guides drive fully insured private vehicles and carry the British 'Blue Badge' accreditation allowing them to conduct tours, walks and interior visits of major London venues and other UK attractions.

Tour: The main tour is conducted personally by the guide, providing knowledgeable commentary, and assisting with practical issues. Sections of the tour may be conducted by in-house docents or using audio devices, but your guide may still escort you.

Lunch: An appropriate restaurant, traditional pub, or sandwich stop can be arranged for lunch (note: tour price does not include food or refreshments). Alternatively, you may want to bring a pre-packed lunch. The guide may take a rest during this period.

Clothing: Clients should dress appropriately making allowances for the changeable British weather, outdoor activities or visiting churches, etc. Our main tip is to dress comfortably. For more tips to help make your tour even more enjoyable click here.

Format: The tour has been specially researched and designed by our staff (copyright applies) and is exclusive to Your London Tours & associates. Selected elements of different tours may be combined to create other tour options.

General: Rest assured with Your London Tours: All our tours are tailored to YOUR requirements. The guide will be exclusively dedicated to your family or group during the tour itself, so you will be able to relax and enjoy your day.



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