This article was updated on July 2
The long, slow return to a form of tourism normality has begun, with plans to re-open attractions such as Stonehenge and Wardour Castle shortly.
Both are operated by English Heritage, which opened the first of its 400 properties on June 13. Stonehenge will open on July 4, with timed tickets needed to be booked in advance.
Deer now nibble the grass around the stones, and a family of hares are nesting in the ring, says a report in The Guardian, in which EH chief executive Kate Mavor says people should expect a markedly different experience, much of which will become the “new normal” for visits to historic sites.
Visitors will be directed via one-way systems, outdoor catering stalls will replace cafes and trestle tables will sell momentos in the open air. Guests will also need to pre-book tickets with a specific time slot.
The narrow corridors and close quarters of Wardour Castle, a 14th castle very close to Shaftesbury, present more challenges and its re-opening is taking a little longer. It will open in early August, with limited numbers.
Elsewhere, National Trust has yet to announce any plans for Stourhead although the NT began a rolling programme of re-opening gardens and parklands on June 3. All of its houses remain closed for now.