This green land, this sceptred isle, this crucible of empire and pioneer of parliamentary democracy, is the most eccentric, extraordinary and downright intriguing place on Earth.
England's most appealing feature is the aura of deep-rooted history that emanates from almost every corner of the land. There's a sense that its towns and villages, castles and cathedrals have grown organically over many centuries, to create calming and comfortable landscapes that the mind settles into like a favourite armchair. It's a place that encourages leisurely contemplation, whether gazing at dreaming spires from a thousand-year-old bridge, taking in the view at the top of a not-too-tiring hill or – best of all – ensconced in the corner of a thatch-roofed, stone-floored country pub with a well-earned pint in hand.
Neil Wilson