Famous anniversaries that you won’t want to miss taking place in 2016

Her Majesty The Queen’s 90th birthday – May 2016

12-15th May 2016, Windsor

Her Majesty’s 90th Birthday Party will be a celebration of The Queen’s life, her love of horses, her dedication to the Commonwealth and international affairs and her deep involvement with the Navy, Army and Air Force.


Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II

Battle of Jutland Centenary – May 2016

From 24th May 2016, Portsmouth

Commemorative events for Jutland 2016 start in Portsmouth Historic Dockyard with the formal opening, on May 24th, of a blockbuster exhibition “36 hours: Jutland 1916, The Battle That Won The War.” The Battle of Jutland is the Royal Navy’s defining moment in The Great War, and perhaps the largest sea battle in history.

40th Anniversary of Agatha Christie’s death – September 2016

September 2016, Wallingford

Agatha Christie is buried in Cholsey, Wallingford where she lived for over 40 years. Wallingford museum also have an exhibition about her life and host an annual celebratory weekend in September.


Agatha Christie

Battle of Hastings 950th anniversary 2016 – October 2016

14th October 2016, Battle Abbey

Make 2016 THE year that you visit Hastings & 1066 Country, the birthplace of the England we know today. Take a fresh look at Hastings and 1066 Country, renowned for its history and heritage and a growing centre of excellence for the quality of its arts and culture. Most specifically, the towns of Hastings & Battle (the latter being the site of the battlefield), will commemorate and celebrate the 950th anniversary of the Battle of Hastings, a turning point in English history. A growing hive of activity throughout the year will build to a two month crescendo of cultural events in September/October 2016.

Root 1066 International Festival, inspired by the Battle of Hastings, the root of English culture, launches on 9th September and runs until 2 October 2016. Root 1066 is a multi-art form festival, with fantastic new commissions and projects offering audiences new perspectives on the history and legacy of 1066 from the best local, national and international contemporary artists.

Brighton Festival’s 50th anniversary and Brighton Fringe’s 10th anniversary – May 2016

May/June 2016

Brighton Festival is an annual celebration of music, theatre, dance, circus, art, film, literature, debate, outdoor and family events – taking place across Brighton. Brighton Fringe is England’s largest arts festival and one of the largest fringe festivals in the world designed to stimulate, educate and entertain a diverse range of people through a diverse range of art forms.

Roald Dahl 100 – September 2016

13th September 2016

13th September is Roald Dahl Day and celebrated with a wonderful array of events at Roald Dahl Museum & Story Centre in Buckinghamshire. 2016 marks the 100th anniversary of his birth.


Roald Dahl

The Queen’s House 400th Anniversary – July 2016

July 2016, Royal Museums Greenwich, London

The Queen’s House designed by Inigo Jones, is undergoing an exciting, major renovation in preparation for its 400th anniversary in 2016. Visitors to the re-opened house will be able to see Orazio Gentileschi’s Joseph and Potiphar’s Wife displayed for the first time since 1650. It will be restored to its royal splendour with a focus on the iconic people and events that are key to understanding the building’s history and its significance today.

Beatrix Potter 150

28th July 1866

In 2016 the National Trust will be celebrating the 150th anniversary year of Beatrix Potter’s life Mottisfont House & Gardens in Romsey, Hampshire will be hosting an exhibition of original Beatrix Potter illustrations (16 July to 18 September 2016).


Beatrix Potter

120th of anniversary Alfriston Clergy House –April 2016

16th April 2016

This rare 14th-century Wealden hall-house near Eastbourne was the first building to be acquired by the National Trust. 16 April 2016 marks the 120th anniversary of the deeds for the house being signed – it was the first property saved and purchased by the then newly formed National Trust in 1896. The thatched, timber-framed house is in an idyllic setting, with views across the River Cuckmere, and surrounded by a delightful, tranquil cottage garden full of wildlife.

100th anniversary of British Summertime 100th anniversary at Petts Wood, Kent

British Summer Time was first established by the Summer Time Act 1916, after a campaign by builder William Willett. It is said, after riding his horse in Petts Wood near his home early one summer morning and noticing how many blinds were still down, the idea for daylight saving time first occurred to him.  William Willett, the leader of the movement to have British Summer Time recognised, is remembered by a stone memorial – in the form of a sundial which keeps British Summer Time, not Greenwich Mean Time  Britain first adopted William Willett’s Daylight Saving Time scheme in 1916, a few weeks after Germany. For years, the British Government had refused to introduce Daylight Saving Time, but by then, Britain and Germany were fighting each other in the First World War (1914-18), and any system that could save fuel and money was worth trying. The Summer Time Act of 1916 was quickly passed by Parliament and the first day of British Summer Time, 21 May 1916, was widely reported in the press.

75th Anniversary of Virginia Woolf’s Death, March 2016

28th March 2016

March 2016 marks the 75th anniversary of Virginia Woolf’s death. Nestled in the heart of rural Sussex is the literary bolthole Monk’s House; a tranquil 17th-century weather-boarded cottage inhabited by Leonard and the novelist Virginia Woolf from 1919 until Leonards death in 1969 and contains important original objects of Virginia Woolf. Virginia’s famous writing room is at the bottom of the garden and is where she wrote many of her novels. She would spend up to three hours a day here and sleep there on fine summer evenings. It still has her favourite view out to Mount Cayburn and Lewes Castle. In the dining room hangs a very rare portrait of Virginia by her sister Vanessa; she only had four portraits made in her lifetime.

Virginia Woolf

Virginia Woolf

400th Anniversary of the death of Shakespeare, April 2016

23rd April 2016

Built in the early 16th century Smallhythe Place is the home of the renowned Victorian actress Ellen Terry, who purchased the house in 1899. Ellen Terry famously played some of Shakespeare’s best loved characters  – including Portia in The Merchant of Venice, Ophelia in Hamlet and in 1888 she played Lady Macbeth wearing the famous beetle wing dress that was immortalised in the painting by John Singer Sargant (now hanging in the Tate Gallery)

Turner Contemporary 5th birthday – April 2015

April 2015

After a phenomenally successful programme in 2015, Turner Contemporary announces its ambitious fifth anniversary programme, which will include exhibitions by Joachim Koester, JMW Turner and Rose Wylie, as well as a large group show including work by Barbara Hepworth, Anish Kapoor and Paul Nash.

50th Farnborough Airshow – July 2016

16th – 17th July 2016

The bi-annual International Airshow at Farnborough Aerodrome, Hampshire Aerodrome features a jam-packed flying display with famous aviation including the Spitfire, Lancaster and the Red Arrows.

Farnborough Airshow 2014

Farnborough Airshow 2014

800th Anniversary for St. Nicolas Church, Pevensey

St Nicolas, The Parish church of Pevensey, is making plans to celebrate its 800th anniversary in 2016. It is the oldest building in the village, where William the Conqueror landed 950 years ago, still used for its original purpose.

Capability Brown 300 – August 2016

30th August 2016

August 2016 marks the 300th anniversary of the birth of Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown, credited with changing the face of eighteenth century England, designing country estates and mansions, moving hills and making flowing lakes and serpentine rivers, a magical world of green. Numerous parks and gardens within the South East will be taking part in the 2016 nationwide celebration of Lancelot

‘Capability’ Brown’s life, work and legacy.  In 1741 Capability Brown reached Stowe, Buckinghamshire where he rapidly assumed responsibility for the execution of both architectural and landscaping works in the famous garden. It was at Stowe in 1744 that Brown married Bridget Wayet, with whom he eventually had nine children. While at Stowe, Brown also began working as an independent designer and contractor.

Hughenden walled garden’s 10th anniversary

Hughenden offers a vivid insight into the charismatic personality and colourful private life of the most unlikely Victorian Prime Minister, Benjamin Disraeli, who lived here from 1848 to 1881. The restoration of the garden begun ten years ago by volunteers and has been run and maintained by them ever since.

Benjamin Disraeli

Benjamin Disraeli

20th Anniversary of the  Borde Hill Rose Garden in 2016

Jay Robin’s Rose Garden, designed by RHS gold medallist Robin Williams and planted in 1996, boasts a lavish display of some 100 varieties of David Austin roses in a total of 500 bushes. The Rose Garden comprises a number of formal beds bordered by box hedges amid softly curving paths and walks. Reflecting the original style of the 1902 plantings are wooden trellis and obelisks decked with rose swags. Delphinium, peonies and phlox are also used to great visual effect, complimenting the star turn, the roses.

Looking further ahead to 2017….

350th Anniversary of the Battle of Chatham – June 2017

9–14 June 2017

From the mid 17th Century English foreign policy was dominated by a series of trade wars with the Dutch. Fought largely at sea, most of the naval actions took place in the English Channel and North Sea, an area that Chatham was geographically well placed to support providing a safe haven for the fleet to be kept over winter, but also being the closest Royal Dockyard to the main operational fleet anchorages at the Nore and off the Downs. The dockyard quickly therefore became the Royal Navy’s pre-eminent ship building and repair yard, and fleet base, overtaking the Thames yards of Woolwich and Deptford in this respect.  The Raid on Medway sometimes called the Battle of the Medway, Raid on Chatham or the Battle of Chatham was one of the worst defeats in the Royal Navy’s history and one of the worst suffered by the British military.

200th Anniversary of Jane Austen’s Death – July 2017

18h July 2017

Hampshire was the inspiration for many of Jane Austen’s classics including Pride and Prejudice, Emma, Mansfield Park and Sense and Sensibility. Discover Britain’s most-loved writer on the 200th anniversary of her death.  Visit the delightful Hampshire village of Chawton, home to Jane Austen’s House Museum, the unpretentious cottage where she spent the last eight years of her life from 1809 until 1817. It was in this house that Jane’s genius flourished and where she was free to write. Join one of the numerous events including regular writers workshops and learn to bring out your inner Jane Austen. Jane loved the countryside around Chawton and you can walk in her footsteps in a 4.5 mile circular walk from Chawton to Farringdon or visit the nearby market town of Alton, where Jane and her sister Cassandra used to go shopping.  Jane’s last resting place can be seen in Winchester Cathedral. Next to her grave you will find a permanent illustrated exhibition outlining her life and death in Hampshire. Jane Austen will be the new face of £10 notes from 2017.


Jane Austen

400th Anniversary of Pocahontas’ death – March 2017

Pochahontas died and was buried under St George’s Church in Gravesend, on 21 March 1617. Gravesham is planning a series of events from June 2016, when she arrived with the Virginian Company, right through the date of her passing in 21 March 2017.

Looking further ahead to 2020….

Mayflower 400 – August 2020

August 2020

The Mayflower arrived in Southampton on 29 July 1620 carrying mainly settlers and was joined by the Speedwell on 1 August 2020 carrying the religious separatists (we now call the Pilgrims) from Delfshaven. Their intention was to get both vessels ready and then sail in company directly to the English Colony in Virginia. Southampton was an ideal place to start the voyage for many reasons; The water is one of the world’s largest natural harbours and offers a safe anchorage, plus its unique double tide provides easy access for 16 hours out of every 24. When the Mayflower and Speedwell left together on that fateful Saturday 15 August after a fraught and hectic stay they could not have imagined that their persistence would lead to the founding of “New England”.

In 2020 the United Kingdom, United States of America and Holland and will commemorate and celebrate the 400th anniversary of the sailing of the Mayflower. A series of major transatlantic and global events are proposed linking our people and our communities through our shared heritage, culture, arts, sports, education, science, commerce, in the spheres of law, politics and international relations and the shared defence of our values.

Dickens 150 – June 2020

June 2020

Charles Dickens was born in Portsmouth in 1812, the second of seven children, and his birthplace is now a museum. He created some of the world’s best-known fictional characters and is regarded as the greatest novelist of the Victorian era. Hampshire provided inspiration for several of Dicken’s novels, including the notorious Victorian workhouse in Andover and Dickens returned to Portsmouth in his last twenties when researching ‘Nicholas Nickleby’.  Dickens World in Medway takes visitors on a journey through Dickens’ lifetime as they step back into Dickensian England and are immersed in the streets, sounds and smells of the 19th century.


Charles Dickens




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s