Reading is situated on two small eminences, whose gentle declivities fall into a pleasant vale, through which the branches of the Kennet flow till they unite with the Thames at the extremity of the town.
The situation of this town on the banks of the Wey, and spreading over the steep hill as it rises from the side of the river, is particularly picturesque. It consists of a principal street, nearly a mile long from the bridge on the west to Stoke on the east, whence several smaller streets extend into the suburbs.
Guildford Castle is supposed to have been built as early as the time of the Anglo-Saxon kings. The principal part now remaining is the keep, of a quadrangular form, rising to the height of 70 feet, and built on an artificial mound of earth. Admission may be had free on application to the proprietor of a school adjoining the castle grounds.
Two miles to the eastward of the town is a fine circular race-course. The roads in the neighbourhood are extremely picturesque — that from Guildford to Farnham in particular, running along a ridge of high chalk hills, and thus commanding an extensive prospect. The trade of the town is considerable, from its central situation and convenient distance from the metropolis. The guild or town-hall and the corn market are handsome buildings.
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The seat of her majesty the Queen, and of her ancestors from the period of the Conquest. Eton College also is within a short distance.
Hampton Court stands on the north bank of the Thames, about twelve miles from London. Numerous sovereigns have made it their temporary abode; and the last who resided here were George II. and his Queen.