Chipping Norton Things to Do

  • Things to Do
    by margaretvn
  • Things to Do
    by margaretvn
  • Things to Do
    by margaretvn

Most Recent Things to Do in Chipping Norton

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    Burford

    by margaretvn Written Nov 10, 2013

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    Burford
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    the lovely Medieval town of Burford is worth a stop - the long High street is lined with little shops as it climbs through the town, and there are little alleyways to explore as well. The parish church is lovely and lots of the buildings are made of Cotswold stone.
    If you like embroidery then do not miss the Burford needlework shop. But there is a lovely selection of shops to wander around and with tastes for everyone. Parking can be a bit of a problem along the High street though.

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    Cirencester

    by margaretvn Written Nov 3, 2013

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    This is a lovely market town, known as "The capital of the Cotswolds" and worth a visit - although it was a pity we had a very wet day there! It is in fact a Roman town from origin and it is in the heart of the Cotswolds. wandering around the town is fun and there are a good variety of shops and of course the open air market is nice to see - held on a monday and friday. But there is a lot more to the town - the Corinium museum which is marvellous - it has the biggest Roman collection in the country. This is because Corinium, Roman Cirencester, was the second largest Roman town (outside London) and the major Roman administration centre for south-west Britain

    Corinium Museum
    Park Street
    Cirencester
    opening times:
    Monday to Saturday
    10:00am to 5:00pm April to October
    10:00am to 4:00pm November to March

    Do not miss the lovely Parish church of St John Baptist right there in the centre of the town. It is one of the biggest parish churches in the country. It is an historic "wool" church, so called because it was built primarily from the profits of the once thriving wool trade. The nave of the church was origin;; 12th century but was rebuilt and heightened by 20ft around 1520 - paid for by the towns merchants. On one wall is a showcase with the Boleyn Cup in it. This cup was made in 1535 for Anne Boleyn. It was then given to her daughter Queen Elizabeth I. She gave it to her physician and he gave it to the church.

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    a quiet little garden

    by margaretvn Written Nov 3, 2013

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    while wandering along the High street in Chipping Campden do stop a while in the lovely quiet Ernest Wilson garden. The garden is dedicated to Ernest Henry Wilson (1876-1930). He was born in the town and became one of the greatest plant collectors. In the garden are plants he introduced to the UK after his travels in China.
    Wilson worked in the Botanical Gardens in Birmingham and then moved to the gardens in Kew.
    James Veitch was looking for someone to travel and collect plants in China and Ernest wilson was mentioned to him. Wilson went off to China in 1899 and his trip was very successful then he was sent out again in 1907 and 1911. He had a very bad accident during a landslide which somewhat limited his travels afterwards but he did go to Japan, Korea and Formosa. He was later appointed Keeper of the Arnold Arboreteum in 1919. He and his wife were killed in a road accident in 1930. In his life he had introduced 1200 species of trees and shrubs and had collected an amazing 100,000 herbarium species!
    The decision to mark the centenary of wilson's birth with a garden was made in the 1970's and the garden opened in 1984.
    throughout the garden there are benches to sit on and it is just a lovely little area of beauty and quiet.

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    Chipping Campden

    by margaretvn Written Nov 3, 2013

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    Do not miss the lovely little town of Chipping Campden - said to have the most beautiful High street in the in England. there are some nice little shops and places to eat. Do not miss the old market hall dating from the 1600's. Behind the High street (at one end of it) is the lovely St James church. It is just nice to stroll along the street and look into the shops, but do not forget to go up Sheep street and look at the wonderful thatched cottages lining the road into the town _ I would love to live in Pikes Cottage!

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    Bourton on the Water

    by margaretvn Written Nov 2, 2013

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    This beautiful little town, four miles from Stow on Wold is often described as the "Little Venice" of the Cotswolds. The river wind rush flows through the town which is built on both its banks with lovely arched bridges crossing at intervals. It is a very popular tourist place so it can get very busy and parking can be a problem, but on the rainy day we visited for the last time we managed to find a place to park near the centre of things. There are a good selection of shops, lots of places to eat or have a drink. It is just nice to wander around the town crossing and recrossing the river.
    If you are looking for crafts things - embroidery, knitting or card making then head for the Bourton Basket at The Old Forge on Moore Road, it is packed with lots of goodies. The owner is friendly but can come across as a bit strange but he is very helpful. The Cotswolds Perfumery offers a toursaround the factory which is interesting - on Victoria Street, The Cotswolds Perfumery has been in business since 1965.

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    Stow on Wold

    by margaretvn Written Nov 2, 2013

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    This is a lovely little market town and it does get very busy. Park (for free) out of the centre at the large parking area near the Tesco supermarket - it really is only a short walk back to the centre of the town.
    This lovely town stands on the junction of seven major roads including the Romans built - The Fosse Way.
    When the Cotswolds wool industry was a major industry in the area the town was famous for its annual fair where 20,000 sheep were traded. It is also famous because the last battle of the English civil war was fought there in 1646.
    The town has a very good selection of shops including a couple of very good outdoor clothing shops - and of course the old fashioned sweet shop.

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    Bibury - a beautiful little place

    by margaretvn Written Nov 2, 2013

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    Arlington Row
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    Make a stop at the delightful little village of Bibury - described by William Morris (24 March 1834 – 3 October 1896) he was an English textile designer, artist, and writer associated with the Pre-Raphaelites) as the most beautiful village in England. Arlington Row is the most well known area of the village and the most photographed part of the Cotswolds. It is a row of weavers cottages that are built in local stone next to the river Coln. Park along the side of the river and then walk along Arlington row and back down the hill to your car. On the way you will also pass the Trout farm - this is one of the oldest trout farms in the country and its setting in Bibury is so lovely. It is a good place for seeing wildlife - including Kingfishers, otters and heron. It also has a lovely gift shop and you can buy fresh fish. The river is a great place for feeding the ducks!

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    Oxford

    by margaretvn Written Oct 13, 2013

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    around Oxford
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    a day trip to Oxford is a must really - it is a wonderful city full of lovely buildings - although when we were there lots were covered with scaffolding! it is the home of the university of Oxford which is the oldest university in England - the colleges are schattered around the city and they are beautiful - so take time to wander around and look up at the decorations on the buildings. The Radcliffe Camera is a gorgeous building although it too was partly in scaffolding and closed when we visited this time. It is near the Old Bodleian. It was funded from the estate of Dr. John Radcliffe - he died in 1714 and left 40,000 pounds in his will for the construction and maintenance of the building. Building began (following the terms of his testament) in 1737.The outside of the building was completed in 1747 and the interior finished in 1748, but the Library's opening was delayed until April 1749. The library had books on a wide range of subjects but by 1850 it had narrowed its focus to the sciences. Later the Radcliffe libary was mereged with the university and the RadCam became the reading room for the Bodleian. The Bridge of Sighs is also not to be missed - in fact it is the Hertford Bridge but it popularly known as the Bridge of Sighs because it is of its similarity to the Bridge of Sighs in Venice. It is in fact actually more like the Rialto bridge in Venice. It is a skywalk joining two parts of Hertford College over New College Lane.
    What I also love are the cute street names so remember to keep an eye open for them

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    Tolkien

    by margaretvn Written Sep 28, 2013

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    grave of Tolkien and his wife
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    If you love the books of Tolkien as I do then you may like ot visit his grave. He is buried in the Wolvercote cemetery. I love the thought that he called himself and his wife after two people deeply in love in his books.

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    A Quick Round Up Of The Other Pubs

    by johngayton Written Dec 20, 2011
    Crown and Cushion
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    With only a brief afternoon visit this time round, and several of the pubs requiring two (or in the case of The Chequers slightly more) pints I didn't manage to get round them all but on my next visit...

    The ones I missed were: The Crown and Cushion - looks more like a boutique hotel than a pub but might be worth an early evening G&T; The Kings Arms - which I really should have made a bit of time for purely on account that it looks like a pub; Whistlers - more of a cafe/bar and maybe better suited for a morning coffee (with or without a drop of brandy) and Bitter and Twisted - a contemporary use of a rather attractive building.

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    And Now The Pubs - #4 The Chequers

    by johngayton Written Dec 20, 2011
    Pub Cornerage
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    Even though the present landlord is an old friend I'm afraid I have relegate this pub to the number two spot of my Chippy favourites - the Red Lion is a pretty difficult act to follow.

    It is though very welcoming pub and as soon as you enter its "Tardis"-like mini maze it feels like a proper pub. As with the RL there's a comforting lack of distractions from the serious business of beer drinking and conversation - no tellingvisions, nor blaring musak. The landlord is a grumpy old b'tard but the staff and regulars are unanimously friendly (OK I'm lying about that first bit) and whilst the pub has had a relatively recent makeover that's been a sortof retro thing in that it has the character that a proper English boozer should have.

    It has its upmarket touches too with its rather smart, but tasteful, courtyard restaurant whose menu features mostly local produce, successfully balancing pubby and restauranty and the daily specials look well worth ignoring the rest of the menu for.

    Added to this are the perfectly kept range of Fullers beers, of which the ESB has been a long-time favourite of mine, which include the new, government-inspired, 2.8% Mighty Atom - but that's a subject for discussion dealt with under "Warnings and Dangers" - HA!

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    And Now The Pubs - #3 The Blue Boar

    by johngayton Written Dec 20, 2011
    Pub Frontage

    I've given this one a mention under "Restaurants" and indeed the light lunch I had I thoroughly enjoyed. However as pubs go this isn't my cup of tea. The beer was good, reasonably-priced, the service was friendly enough but the pub itself is a bit plasticky for my tastes and every room seemed dominated by the variously-sized TV's - there was even one immediately above the otherwise welcoming open fire.

    Maybe it's because I'm not a TV person - but as a trans-gender thing the Blue Boar just doesn't work for me. By all accounts it can be quite lively on weekend evenings when they have live music (I presume they switch them off then).

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    And Now The Pubs - #2 The Fox

    by johngayton Written Dec 20, 2011

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    Frontage (and taxi rank)

    The Fox Hotel, facing the town's market square, is another of the local Hook Norton Brewery establishments and as expected serves up an excellent pint. This another friendly pub with chatty regulars and welcoming staff.

    On my Saturday lunchtime visit the main bar was busy with lunchers, locals and visitors alike, and the food looked like proper pub stuff. That didn't detract from the pub atmosphere though with a little coterie of us at the bar passing the time of day and what I had intended to be a swift pint became two slowish ones - well, I was thirsty.

    BTW it's also very handy for public transport as the bus stops are just round the corner and there's a taxi rank immediately outside the front door.

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    Enjoying A Bit Of Both Urban And Rural

    by johngayton Updated Dec 18, 2011

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    The lane at the end of Church Street
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    You don't have to walk far from Chippy's town centre to find yourself in the lush rolling countryside of Northwest Oxforshire and the area is criss-crossed by public footpaths and bridleways. With its high advantage even a short stroll offers panoramic views.

    One such short stroll, which conveniently starts from a pub and ends with one, takes you from the Chequers on Goddard's Lane down Church Street, past Henry Cornish's 17th century Almshouses and, of course, the Church from which if you follow the anti-clockwise path you skirt the mound of the former Norman castle. Continuing up the rise brings you out on a farm track with the Cotswolds undulating as far as the eye can see.

    You can loop back via Pool Meadow, which was once the Lord of the Manor's fishpond and is now a boggy water meadow. Returning back towards the village through the commons brings you onto the main Worcester Road by which time you'll have worked up a bit of a thirst - well I had anyway! A bit of an urban nip and tuck brings you onto Albion Street and the absolutely excellent Red Lion with its open hearth, warm welcome and very reasonably priced Hook Norton beers.

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    And Now The Pubs - #1 The Red Lion

    by johngayton Updated Dec 18, 2011

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    A Proper Pub

    Unfortunately pubs like this are fast disappearing from our landscape as the big pubco's treat their estates as properties rather than community resources. The Red Lion is a proper brewery-tenanted public house owned by the local Hook Norton brewery which as well as producing some excellent beers allows its pubs, and publicans, to be individuals.

    Here there are no distractions from the serious business of enjoying a couple of beers with convivial company. There are no fruit machines, jukebox or fancy menus just a simple warm welcome, augmented in winter by the open fire and in summer by the suntrap of the wind-sheltered garden.

    Even though I was a bit time-limited on this visit, still having several other pubs on my agenda, this was a no-brainer two-pint visit and would have been quite a few more had I been stopping over.

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