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We understand some days in your life are extra special. We really do. And we appreciate that few, if any, are more important than your wedding day. You want to know it’s in safe, capable, passionate hands. As many of our hotels are licensed for civil ceremonies, we’re also happy to host your actual wedding as well as your reception. Whatever your choice, when you get hitched, we’ll make sure your special day goes without a hitch. That’s a Hallmark promise.

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10 interesting facts about Chester


The walled city of Chester is one of the oldest in Britain, and retains a charm and splendour all of its own despite being dwarfed in size by neighbouring Liverpool and Manchester. Before you plan a visit, be sure to brush up on the North West city’s fascinating facts and claims to fame:

4465099_7a70e3eb1. It's home to the nation's oldest active sports venue

Chester Racecourse has been hosting horseracing since the early 16th Century and is the UK’s oldest racecourse still in use. May is the best time to visit to catch a race at ‘The Roodee’, as the course is nicknamed due to its raised mount or ‘rood’.

Caughall_-_Flamingos_at_Chester_Zoo2. Its zoo is the most visited wildlife attraction in the UK

The city is instantly associated with Chester Zoo, and it's no wonder. Receiving well over a million visitors every year, it was named seventh best zoo in the world by TripAdvisor in 2015.

Louise_Rayner_Chester_The_Cross_looking_towards_Watergate_Street3. It hosted a major 17th-Century battle

Even many locals are unaware that the village of Rowton was the scene of a clash between the Parliamentarians and Royalists nearly 500 years ago.At the Battle of Rowton Heath in 1645, around 600 Royalists died. These included Lord Bernard Stewart, who was due to be given the title of Earl of Lichfield by Charles I.

4. It has a football ground on a national border

If you go to see a game at Chester FC’s Lookers Vauxhall Stadium, you will probably cross the English-Welsh border in doing so. The club offices and car park are in England, but the pitch is in Wales.

14218024197_be5857a509_b5. James Bond was born there

Well, not Bond himself, but actor Daniel Craig was born in Chester in 1968 and grew up on the neighbouring Wirral. Interestingly, he’s not the first Bond from the area, with Timothy Dalton having been born not far up the A55 in Colwyn Bay. There must be something in the Dee water!

2444008_a1d38e586. Americans love it!

In a 2013 poll run by USA TODAY, Americans ranked Chester above the likes of Prague and Venice in a list of the prettiest European cities. Nowhere else in the UK made the top 10.

001424_a44263767. It has a unique style of walkway

Dating back to the 13th Century, the two-tiered Chester Rows give you twice the shops in the same amount of space. You won’t find a style like this anywhere else.

8. The UK’s largest outlet village is just down the road

Visitors looking for even more retail therapy should make the short trip to Ellesmere Port and spend a day at Cheshire Oaks Designer OutletThe first outlet village of its kind in Europe, it boasts well over 100 stores. The choice of restaurants at the adjacent Coliseum will see you well catered for as well.

3816634_ed5ff1ba9. You can see Roman underfloor heating there

At the unlikely venue of the Spud-U-Like outlet on Bridge Street, you can visit the remains of a Roman hypocaust in the impressive cellar.

10. It has excellent accommodation

With our three superb Hallmark Hotels in Chester, you won’t be short of an ideal place to rest after a day exploring this quaint and vibrant city. Book to stay at our Chester Inn (Westminster)Llyndir Hall, Chester South or The Queen, Chester.

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