Blenheim Palace, birthplace of Sir Winston Churchill, was the setting for the latest Best of British event for Chevening Scholars.

A group of more than 50 scholars made the trip to Oxfordshire, to look around the historical palace which has been standing for more more than 300 years.

Ximena Matus, a Guatemalan scholar who is also one of the Chevening Social Media Ambassador, reflects on a fantastic day:

‘Chevening Scholars from all over the UK had the opportunity to visit the city of Oxford in November, and visited Blenheim Palace, and for me it’s one of the most beautiful places I’ve seen so far in the UK.

Blenheim Palace, where Sir Winston Churchill was born, is a majestic 300 year-old historical place. The Palace was built in the 18th Century to celebrate victory over the French in the War of the Spanish Succession, and it was built as a gift to the 1st Duke of Marlborough, John Churchill.

As we visited the Palace with our tour guide, we were able to appreciate the marvellous pieces found inside: from amazing carpentry, ceramics, furniture and art, and even be delighted with the amazing music of a pipe organ, reminiscing the 18th Century and the history and lifestyle of that time. It was also interesting to found out that some scenes of the current James Bond 007 movie, Spectre, were shot in the front yard of the Palace.

After our tour, we had the traditional English Cream Tea at one of the halls of the Palace, and had the opportunity to share and meet our fellow scholars. We had the opportunity to explore the palace and visit a Winston Churchill exhibition, as well as Pleasure Gardens, where the Marlborough Hedge Maze is found.

Not even a rainy day is an obstacle for us to have fun and enjoy the UK and its beautiful places. Thanks to everyone on organizing this amazing event!’ 

Want to see more? Check out Ximena’s video below.