Chertsey in Surrey sits in the borough of Runnymede. It is on the River Thames and also the River Bourne – also known as The Chertsey Bourne, it runs from Windsor Great Park to the Thames.
Archaeological remains show the area was inhabited long before the founding of Chertsey Abbey in 666AD. The Abbey, the first of its kind in Britain, enjoyed unrivalled wealth and power, at the height of which the Abbot controlled over 50,000 acres of land in Surrey plus houses in London and Cardigan Priory in South Wales. Things took a turn for the worst, however, with the arrival of the plundering Vikings in 871 when 90 monks – and the Abbot – were killed. The town is well known for the annual Chertsey Regatta, which has been held on the river for over 150 years, and which involves skiffing, also known as sculling, which required the propelling of a wooden skiff boat with a pair of oars (as opposed to one single oar in rowing). Chertsey boasts a wide selection of restaurants covering a range of cuisine and is a good place to eat after a visit to nearby Thorpe Park.
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