The Malverns are made up of Great Malvern, Malvern Wells, Little Malvern, West Malvern and North Malvern, all within a couple of miles of each other. From the tops of the hills there are stunning views to The Severn Valley on the East and The Black Mountains and Wales to the West. Malvern means "Bare Hill", a celtic expression that derided from the heavy quarrying that took place on the hills in the past. Several of these old quarries still exist and it was only 30 years ago that quarrying stopped at Gullet Quarry and Castlemorton Common. The hard core of the Malvern hills is 600 million years old igneous, metamorphic rock, thrust up from the east to up-lift millions of years deposit of limestone. The hills are in fact older than The Alps or The Himalayas. Evidence suggests that the first settlers were from the Bronze Age around 1000 BC although the town wasn't founded until the 11th Century when Benedictine Monks established Little Malvern Priory. The hills until the 11th Century until the 11th Century
The area offers A rich cultural heritage of forts, castles and priories stands proudly from this landscape of ancient woodland, rolling pastures and wild, open commons. The geology of the area is varied and fascinating and the area is home to a diversity of locally and nationally important wildlife. An area map of the hills and commons is available on The Malvern Hills Conservators website, if you click on the map below it will take you to the page you need.
The Malverns are famous for the famous spring waters that flows from them, one of the main reasons the area became a tourist attraction. The Malvern Spa Association aims to work with the community to protect and restore the springs (there are currently six that supply free spring water to the public). You can learn more about this marvellous organisation by clicking on this banner:
The ares is also well known for being the home of The Morgan Motor Company, the success of which was founded on a 3-wheeled vehicle which went into production in 1909, the car won the French Grand Prix in 1913 and the company sold over 30,000 of them. A new version of this classic is available again now, for more information on all of their cars and details of factory tours and museum opening times click on www.morgan-motor.co.uk
Malvern is also the base for the internationally famous English String and The English Symphony Orchestras, in fact the area is famed for it's musical and artistic heritage, many performances taking place at The Malvern Priory. "Land Of Hope And Glory" was first performed at The Wyche School, Elgar was in attendance. Elgar was also responsible for setting up The Malvern Concert Club 1n 1903, one of the oldest musical clubs in the country.
, itFamous Residents & Visitors
There are many famous names who have spent time in this area, we've mentioned Elgar earlier whose works are synonomous with The Malverns. There is more information about Elgar in the Visitor Highlights section. Florence Nightingale practised here. CS Lewis (who was a pupil at malvern College) and JRR Tolkein are amongst many authors who lived in Malvern. It is believed that the inspiration behind the opening pages of "The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe" came from the Gas Lamps outside The Nags Head pub. Tolkein created the Hobbit's abode based on the Malvern Hills landscape. Another playwright to frequent the Malvern Hills was George Bernard Shaw who was heavily involved in the setting up on The Malvern Drama Festival in 1929.
Charles Darwin was another famous resident, he regularly took the water treatment in the nineteenth century. Darwin spent many years in the area in between writing. His daughter Anne Elizabeth often travelled with her father in fact she past away aged only 10 after a long illness and is buried in The Great Malvern Priory churchyard.
Former American president Franklin Roosevelt stayed at The Aldwyn Towers Hotel (which is now an apartment complex on the way up to St.Ann's Well) while he took the water treatments as a seven year old boy. Jenny Lind "The Swedish Nightingale" was a famous opera inger in the 19th Century, she lived in Malvern at Wynds' Point near British Camp in her later years and is in fact buried in Great Malvern Cemetary.
Peter Mark Roget who devised Roget's Thesaurus passed away whilst on holiday in The Malvern Hills and is buried in West Malvern at St.James Churchyard. The founder of The British Medical Association Sir Charles Hastings lived in the beautiful Barnards Green House and Dame Laura Knight the famous impressionist painter lived for many months in The Mount Pleasant Hotel.
More recently Nigel Kennedy the controversial Classical musician was a resident of West Malvern which was also the home of Cherry Red Records which were synonomous with the New Wave era of the early eighties.
Malvern is also famous for it's scientific credentials, Qinetic, one of the world's leading defence, technology and security companies are one of the biggest employers in the area. It was formed out of the greater part of the government agency DERA. This site was originally the home of The Royal Radar establishment and was a key player in developing equipment to crack The Enigma Code, thus shortening the second world war.