Somerset Day, celebrated on May 11 every year, gives everyone an opportunity to celebrate Somerset as a place to live, work, play, learn, and enjoy the whole Somerset experience in the U.K. Did you know that Somerset is one of the most sought-after destinations in the U.K.? Yes, Somerset has so much more to offer than great cider, tasty cheese, and a massive music festival. It has plenty of coastline from sandy beaches to Jurassic sections packed with fossils, lush forests, and an abundance of historical buildings and heritage sites. So, what exactly is Somerset Day about, and what is its history? Read on to find out more.
History of Somerset Day
Somerset is a beautiful county located in the Southwest of England, just underneath the Bristol Channel. The county boasts rich natural wildlife and historic landscapes, covering a broad area of countryside and towns, including Glastonbury and even Bath. The first Somerset Day was celebrated in 2015.
Passion for Somerset, a group of local businesses, ran an online public vote to find a date for the county-wide event. There were three days in the running, each with a special link to the county, and on May 11, the winning day took 51% of the votes. May 11 was chosen as Somerset Day to honor Alfred the Great. In 878, Alfred the Great, the King of Wessex, gathered together the people of Somerset to march against the Viking army in the Battle of Edington, which is also known as the Battle of Ethandun. The Wessex king and his Somerset army men defeated the invading Vikings, and Alfred went on to become a dominant ruler. There is also a tower called King Alfred’s Tower that is believed to mark the site where King Alfred rallied his troops.
Michael Eavis founded the famous Glastonbury festival in 1970 in Somerset. Somerset is also a culturally rich venue, filled with over 10,000 listed buildings, over 500 ancient monuments, and 36 English Heritage sites. On Somerset Day, the people of Somerset will fly their flags, honoring the heritage, past, and present of this great county.
Somerset Day timeline
Alfred the Great, the King of Wessex, marches with his army to the Battle of Edington.
Eavis establishes the famous Glastonbury festival at Worthy Farm in Somerset.
The people of Somerset celebrate the first-ever Somerset Day.
The rich culture and natural wealth of the county make it a popular tourist destination.
Somerset Day FAQs
What is Somerset famous for?
Somerset is famous for its network of caves and visitor attractions. You can also tour Cheddar Gorge in the Mendip Hills, Wookey’s Hole, Witch’s Kitchen, and Witch’s Parlour. It also hosts the Glastonbury Festival.
Is Somerset a nice place to live?
Somerset is a fantastic place to live. People across the county and the country voted Somerset as one of the best places to live because of its excellent towns and rich culture.
What is the main city in Somerset?
The county has two cities, Bath and Wells, and 30 towns, including the town of Taunton. The largest urban areas in Somerset in terms of population are Bath, Weston-Super-Mare, Taunton, Yeovil, and Bridgwater.
Somerset Day Activities
Spread the word
The best thing you can do to celebrate Somerset Day is by spreading awareness about the beauty and history of Somerset to people who are unaware of it. Spread the word about this festive day on social media and encourage your friends to do the same.
One of the exciting ways in which you can celebrate Somerset Day is by visiting Somerset yourself. If you are waiting for a sign to plan your trip, this is it!
Share your story
If you have been lucky enough to visit Somerset in the past and have interesting stories to share about your experience in Somerset, take to social media and voice your thoughts. Along with your stories, share more information and facts about Somerset.
5 Fascinating Facts About Somerset That You’ll Want To Know
The longest preserved steam railway
The West Somerset Railway is the longest preserved steam railway in the country.
The first town to get electricity
Taunton in Somerset is the first town in the country to be lit permanently by street lightning.
It is the birthplace of cheddar cheese
Cheddar originated in Somerset and is named after the Cheddar Gorge and caves.
The Roman remains
The largest collection of Roman coins ever found in a single container was found in Somerset.
A place with history
The oldest complete human skeleton was found in Cheddar Gorge, Somerset.
Why We Love Somerset Day
It’s a great day to celebrate
Somerset Day is an amazing holiday that celebrates Somerset and makes people remember the history and significance of Somerset. By observing this day, we uphold the culture and heritage of the county.
It spreads positivity
Somerset Day encourages people to research and learn more about the wonderful county of Somerset. This way, their love for the county might increase manifold.
It brings people together
One of the wonderful things we can take home from Somerset Day is that this celebration unites people. Fellow patriots from all over the county come together to celebrate and enjoy this day.
Somerset Day dates