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Henry VIII The Man Behind The Monster Tour

Guildford Harbour Hotel, 3 Alexandra Terrace, Guildford GU1 3DA
Date and Time
10 - 12 November
From £639.99

Tour & Study Day

  • Visit to Eltham Palace, Henry’s childhood home
  • Guided tour of Hampton Court Palace
  • Explore the ruins at Titchfield Abbey
  • Visit to the Mary Rose Museum and Southsea Castle
  • Talks from two experts Dr Elizabeth Norton and Siobhan Clarke

In the company of Dr Elizabeth Norton explore the life of the infamous King Henry VIII. The prince that was never meant to be King left behind quite a history, from wars with France, to breaking with the Catholic Church and of course his numerous wives. In the company of Tudor historian Dr Elizabeth Norton and with the help of Hampton Court guide, Siobhan Clarke, this tour will look at Henry’s long and varied reign, the highs and the lows and the man behind the icon.


Day 1: Arrive independently at the Guildford Harbour Hotel from 15.00.
Evening welcome reception, private dinner with wine and talk by Dr. Elizabeth Norton ‘Henry VIII, the Man behind the Monster’.

Day 2: Eltham Palace and guided tour of Hampton Court. Evening talk by Siobhan Clarke
Two sites inextricably linked to Henry VIII today, starting with Eltham Palace, his childhood home and the last monarch to spend any substantial amount of money on the building. In the 1930s, Stephen and Virginia Courtauld built a modern house attached to the remains of the palace creating, internally, one of the finest examples of the Art Deco style in England. A visit here is a quirky mix of the medieval and the modern. From here we head across South London to Hampton Court Palace for a guided tour. Dating back to 1515 when it was commissioned by Cardinal Wolsey, the palace was later gifted to Henry VIII and is one of only two of Henry VIII’s palaces still in existence. This evening a second talk at the hotel, ‘King & Collector: Henry VIII and the Art of Kingship’ with Hampton Court guide and author, Siobhan Clarke, who will sign copies of her book, a copy of which ls included in the tour price, followed by dinner at the hotel.

Day 3: Titchfield Abbey, Mary Rose Museum and Southsea Castle
Our first visit of the day is to Titchfield Abbey dating back to the 13th century, where Elizabeth will lead a guided tour. After the suppression of the monasteries, Henry VIII gave the abbey to Sir Thomas Wriothesley, who transformed it into a grand Tudor mansion. From here we head to Portsmouth’s historic dock area and the superb Mary Rose Museum which tells the story of the Mary Rose, pride of Henry VIII’s fleet, which lay undisturbed on the seabed of the Solent where she sank in 1545 until her rediscovery in 1971. Her salvage 11 years later uncovered a wonderfully preserved Tudor time capsule, beautifully presented in the excellent museum built to house it, which opened in 2016. Our final stop is at Southsea Castle, one of Henry VIII’s forts, where he witnessed the sinking of his flagship, the Mary Rose in the Battle of the Solent in 1545. Return to the hotel for approx. 17.00.

NB: Exact order of excursions may vary according to local conditions and tour manager’s discretion

Please note: Post tour extra nights are available at a supplement

Please note the maximum group size on this tour is 47 passengers.


  • Two nights’ bed and breakfast at the four-star Guildford Harbour Hotel, based on shared occupancy of a twin/double room
  • Welcome reception, first night private three course dinner with wine
  • Second night dinner at the hotel
  • One copy of ‘Henry VIII and the Art of the Kingship’ by Siobhan Clarke per booking
  • All talks, guided tours and admissions
  • Coach transfers as required
  • Expert, Dr Elizabeth Norton and tour manager throughout


  • Transport to the hotel is not included
  • Double for sole use supplement
  • Extra nights on bed and breakfast basis
  • Car parking charges
  • Holiday insurance
  • Meals other than those stated
  • Items of a personal nature such as drinks, laundry, telephone calls etc
  • Porterage and gratuities


Guidford Harbour Hotel
Stylish, modern four-star hotel located in the heart of Guildford. The hotel offers a bar, restaurant, gym, outdoor pool, spa (extra cost) and very comfortable bedrooms with modern amenities including TV, telephone, free wifi, air-conditioning, safe, hairdryer and tea/coffee making facilities. Guildford is well located to access the diverse places visited on this tour.

Car parking: Parking is available at the hotel and costs £16 per day payable directly to the hotel
The hotel is also only 5 minutes from Guildford Station.


Your expert speaker and guide – Dr Elizabeth Norton

Dr Elizabeth Norton is a British historian, specialising in the early modern period. She has degrees from the Universities of Cambridge and Oxford, as well as a PhD from King’s College London, where she has taught History. She has published widely, including the critically acclaimed ‘The Lives of Tudor Women’ (Head of Zeus, 2016) and biographies of four of Henry VIII’s wives, her PhD thesis looked at Catholicism in Elizabethan England. She regularly appears on television, including the recent BBC series, ‘The Boleyns, A Scandalous Family’, on which she also acted as Historical Advisor.

Please note that all our UK tours start and finish at the relevant hotel.

You can normally check in from 3pm onwards but hotels will always be happy to store your luggage if you arrive earlier in the day.

For full details of how to get to the hotel, directions and the nearest train station, please click on the hotel website or call our office for details. These will also be sent automatically with your confirmation.

The welcome reception and first evening dinner / talk will commence at about 7pm - full details will be sent with your joining instructions about 10 days prior to the arrival date.

Event organiser is Travel Editions.

Disclaimer: All information was correct when the listing was prepared. Any questions about the event should be directed to the event organiser.

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