The past is not another country in the tradition-led lands of England and Wales but at least the plumbing has improved. Once the despair of travellers for its obstreperous hoteliers, dingy beds and ration-led breakfasts (and this is where B&Bs were invented!), the UK has now firmly taken advantage of its historic housing. Grand but down-to-earth manors, comfortable lived-in castles, redoubtably cheery roadside inns, spiffed-up townhouses – the range is as varied and stimulating as the landscape.
Whether you’re ambling through ‘green and pleasant’ Devon, hiking Yorkshire’s wild and windy moors or charging through the throngs of London, there’s a very good chance you’ll come home to an affable host who’ll serve a terrific smoked haddock paté with an excellent Chablis and be pleased to discuss the Euro, after which you’ll slumber heavily in a cushiony double duvet. You’ll wake up to the sound of tea being poured and rain pouring down, but then, some things never change.