An olde worlde Cotswolds nugget, with a plethora of significantly interesting listed limestone buildings, Chipping Campden has a rich heritage of traditional craftsmanship which continues today.
Once the heart of this prominent wool merchants’ town and a place for traders to peddle, the 17th Century Market Hall is now in the hands of the National Trust and is well worth a look. CR Ashbee secured the town’s mark on the Arts and Crafts map in the early 1900s when he opened his Guild of Handicrafts, part of which now forms Court Barn Museum where the stories of craftspeople past are revealed.
With an independent Literature Festival followed by a popular Music Festival each May, Chipping Campden continues to tap into the arts. Both attract programmes burgeoning with world-class talent. But tradition is never far from local focus and annually this charming town holds Robert Dover’s ancient Olimpick Games and then the Scuttlebrook Wake – a ceremony and procession for the May Queen accompanied by a performance from the vibrant Campden Morris Men.
Centrally located within the north Cotswolds and a handy start and finish point for the Cotswold Way – a trail that extends the border of this Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty – Campden has acres of appeal for ramblers and hikers. While out for a stroll, keep your eyes peeled for the old Isambard Brunel railway tunnel. You might even stumble across Little Orchard cottage where Graham Greene wrote the celebrated Stanboul Train.
If the outdoors is your bag, Chipping’s nearby glorious gardens are bound to be of interest. From The National Trust’s inspiring Hidcote Manor to the delicately colour themed Kiftsgate Court, there are myriad joys to behold just a short drive or cycle ride away. To see some natural colour in the town itself, make sure you visit during June when the Chipping Campden Open Gardens Weekend is in full bloom.
Sir Pevsner, an art history and architecture buff renowned for his county-by-county guides, The Buildings of England, described this pretty little place as “the best piece of townscape in Gloucestershire, arguably one of the best in England”. Let Love Cottages facilitate your stay in Chipping Campden, one of the best in England, today.