Hilsea is a district of the city of Portsmouth in the English county of Hampshire. Hilsea is home to one of Portsmouth’s main sports and leisure facilities – the Mountbatten centre. Trafalgar School (formerly the City of Portsmouth Boys’ School) is also in Hilsea. It is also the home of Portsmouth rugby football club
Located at the Northern end of Portsea Island, for most of its history, Hilsea was a small hamlet on the Portsmouth to London road. The name “Hilsea” probably means ‘holly island’. The boundaries of Portsmouth were not extended to encompass the hamlet until 1832. The last working farm in Portsmouth, Green Farm, was located in the area up to the 1990s. This area is now a residential estate and is marked by a pub and hotel, still known locally as the Green Farm, although its external sign bears only the name of the Toby Carvery chain which now owns it.
Construction of Hilsea Barracks started in 1780. Over the decades, they underwent various rebuildings and changes of use, before being knocked down to allow for housing development in the 1960s.
In the years after 1926, Hilsea expanded with the building of the Hilsea Crescent Estate, which was constructed on former allotments.
The North of the district composes the Hilsea Lines, former defensive fortifications that are now a nature reserve, known locally as Fox’s Forest. In the 1930s, the Western end of the Lines moat became known as the Hilsea Lagoon and in the mid-1930s work was done on the banks and it was turned into a boating lake. In the same period, the land around the Eastern end of the boating lake was converted into Hilsea Bastion Gardens. Most of the gardens were destroyed as the result of road widening in 1968–70. The terraces that formed part of the gardens were demolished in 2000.
In 1938, a bridge was built across the boating lake section of the moat. It was demolished in 1999 and later replaced by the current structure.
The area is home to the Coach & Horses pub. This was originally the first public house reached when arriving on Portsea island from the mainland. It was damaged in a fire in 1870 and had to be rebuilt. It was again rebuilt between 1929 and 1931 to a design by A. E. Cogswell and this is the building that stands today.
Another facility in the area was the Hilsea Lido which opened in July 1935. It closed in 2008, although attempts are being made to reopen it. These attempts were successful and it finally re-opened in July 2014.
The North West of Hilsea is protected from the sea by Stamshaw Esplanade which was built between 1936 and 1938. The Esplanade also serves to connect site of Hilsea Lido with Alexandra Park
Modern Hilsea is a mixture of residential and industrial areas. One of the major routes into Portsmouth still runs through the area. In addition, a small halt called station serves the area.
Between 1932–1973, the North-East corner of Hilsea was previously the location of Portsmouth Airport, and was one of the last remaining commercial grass runway airports in the United Kingdom. The airport offered little scope for expansion and, following some near-miss accidents with larger Hawker Siddeley 748 aircraft in the 1960s, the airport was restricted to small aircraft from then on, was uneconomic and closed in 1973. During the 1980s, the former airport land was redeveloped into an industrial area and a housing estate now known as Anchorage Park.
Top rated driving schools within 5 miles of Hilsea, Hampshire
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Common questions asked by learner drivers in Hilsea
Q: How much is a 2 hour driving lesson in UK?
A: 2 hour driving lesson in the UK typically costs around £40.
Q: How much is the driving theory test in UK?
A: The driving theory test in the UK typically costs around £23.
Q: Can you learn to drive in a week?
A: It is possible to learn to drive in a week, but it is not recommended. It is better to take your time and learn at a pace that suits you.
Q: How many lessons do you need to pass the driving test?
A: There is no set number of lessons you need to pass the driving test, as everyone learns at a different pace. However, it is typically recommended that you have at least 20 hours of professional driving lessons, plus additional private practice, before taking your test.
Q: How long is a driving test?
A: The driving test in the UK lasts around 40 minutes.
Q: How many lessons does a first time driver need?
A: A first time driver typically needs around 30 hours of professional driving lessons, plus additional private practice, before taking their driving test.
Q: What happens if a learner driver is caught alone in the UK?
A: If a learner driver is caught driving alone in the UK, they will face a fine of up to £1,000 and their driving licence will be revoked.
Q: Is UK driving licence hard to get?
A: The driving licence process in the UK is not particularly difficult, but it is important to make sure you are well prepared before taking your test.