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Hiding Places in Worcestershire

By Linda Tancs

It was no easy task to be a Catholic priest in Elizabethan England, especially after Elizabeth I lost her tolerance for the “old faith.” As a result, a number of safe houses sprung up. One of them was Harvington Hall, a moated manor house in Worcestershire. The grand estate boasts the largest number of priest hides in the country, including an entire concealed chapel. A false fireplace leading to an attic, trapdoors and crawl spaces behind beams or under stairs are among its secret spaces intended to foil priest hunters. You can reach the locale via train from London Euston to Kidderminster, which is about three miles away from the manor. Take bus line 42 or a taxi from there.

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