More than one million people visited English Heritage sites during the month of August, the highest number in a given month on record.
Amid soaring temperatures visitors flocked to top performing sites Stonehenge, Dover Castle, Hadrian’s Wall (Housesteads, Birdoswald and Chesters Roman Forts), Osborne and Carisbrooke Castle.
Meanwhile the number of people who explored Bolsover Castle in Derbyshire is up 52 per cent on last August, and Carisbrooke Castle on the Isle of Wight 30 per cent.
For the first time in more than 300 years, horses returned to Bolsover. Visitors enjoyed twice-daily displays of the advanced dressage training techniques introduced to England in the 17th century by William Cavendish, first Duke of Newcastle, once riding master to King Charles II.
Meanwhile the private beach where Queen Victoria first took a swim in the sea in at Osborne opened to the public for the first time.
English Heritage visitor figures are up nearly 20 per cent compared to last year, a spokesperson said.
“These figures demonstrate that people are still looking to heritage attractions to provide a great day out, and that the rich and colourful history of England still provides a great backdrop to this,” the spokesperson said.
“At English Heritage our aim is to bring this history to life through our events and interpretation at hundreds of historic sites across the country, and it’s fantastic to see such strong visitor figures reflecting the success of this.”
Meanwhile Luke Whitcomb, marketing director at English Heritage, said: ‘‘I am delighted we have welcomed such a large number of people to our sites this August.
“The figure of 1,066,000 is fantastic – and a memorable date particularly for us! The sunny weather may have given people the impetus to get out and about, but it appears that more than ever, visitors have truly enjoyed being able to stand on the spot where history was made, which is something English Heritage can offer like no one else.’’