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Oxfordshire Cotswolds Tourist Information and Travel Guide

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Market Towns Getting There Villages to Visit  

Historic Market Towns of Oxfordshire

The Oxfordshire Cotswolds are blessed with some of the most picturesque towns and villages in England including the historic market towns of Burford, Witney, Woodstock, Charlbury and Chipping Norton. Each has its own unique past that has helped to influence and develop the towns you see today.

Burford

With its medieval bridge, old Cotswold stone houses and attractive 17th and 18th century houses and cottages, Burford's High Street is justifiably world famous. This town is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds and has an ample supply of quaint shops, inns, restaurants and tea shops. See if you can find any building that is perfectly perpendicular or horizontal. For more information about - Burford.

Witney

This town is the largest of the Oxfordshire Cotswolds market towns and became famous for woolen blanket making, a tradition that goes back over 200 years and still continues today within the same family business. For more information about - Witney.

Woodstock

It is not surprising that in an area once regarded as the centre of the weaving trade, you can embark on a unique 'Textiles Trail' at Woodstock which includes the world renowned Blenheim Palace Tapestries, the captivating Woodstock Wallhangings, the enchanting Stonesfield Embroidery at the Oxfordshire Museum and an extraordinary collection of over 100 kneelers at St. Magdalen Church. For more information about - Woodstock.

Charlbury

If your looking for a base to explore the ancient Royal Hunting Forest at Wychwood the market town of Charlbury is it. This town originated as a fortified Saxon camp and lies within the beautiful Evenload Valley with its wealth of opportunities for walking, cycling and taking in the glorious surrounding. For more information about - Charlbury.

Chipping Norton

The centre of the Cotswold wool trade. Chipping Norton was given a charter by King John in 1205 to hold its own wool fair.

The town is the highest in Oxfordshire and renowned as the town on the hill, its robust market town atmosphere is still intact. For more information about - Chipping Norton.

Getting to Oxfordshire Cotswolds



By Road

The M4 and M40 provide easy access to Oxfordshire & the Cotswolds from London and the South East. The M5 is a direct link to Birmingham, England's North Country and the Counties of Devon and Cornwall.

Car Hire

Another way to explore Oxfordshire is by car, there are many car rental companies to choose from to give you the freedom to explore at your own pace.

By Bus

The National Express network runs bus travel throughout England. It offers a rage of discount fares and trail passes. The main route to Oxfordshire & the Cotswolds from London starts at Victoria Coach Station. The main bus stations in Gloucestershire & the Cotswolds.

By Rail

The nearest mainline railway station to Chipping Norton is Moreton-in-Marsh from London Paddington - 8 miles away (13 minutes by car).

The nearest railway station to Woodstock is Tackley mainline station from London Paddington - 5.6 miles away (8 minutes by car).

Villages in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds



Asthall

Asthall in the Windrush Valley has a long history - there was a Roman settlement here on Akerman Street - the roman road linking Cirencester with St. Albans. The village has an interesting church and 17th century manor house, the home of the Mitford sisters and where Nancy Mitford wrote much of
'Love in a Cold Climate'. She is buried at nearby Swinbrook church which has the fine Fettiplace tombs and memorials to the Fettiplace family who lived here for over 300 years.

Bampton

An historic and attractive large village, its church spire is a famous landmark across the upper Thames valley. The village is famous for its Morris Dancing traditions which still continue. Nearby village of Aston has a church, unusually with eight bells.
For more info see - Bampton.

Bledington

Situated in the Evenlode Valley, lying on the route of the Oxfordshire Way Walk, Bledington has an attractive village green which still retains its Victorian maypole. Also has an exceptionallly interesting church with magnificent 15th century clerestory. For more info see - Bledington.

Broadwell

A small village with an attractive church of a style more commonly found in the East Anglia part of England rather than the Cotswolds. Two stone pillars are the only evidence of the long vanished manor house that once stood in the village.
For more info see - Broadwell.

Brize Norton

A good centre for exploring Oxford and the upper Thames valley and close to Burford and Witney. Nearby is the village of Black Bourton and the lively and bustling Canterton - one of Oxfordshires newest towns serving the RAF Airbase at Brize Norton.

Chadlington

The village of Chadlington is three miles south of Chipping Norton and spreads itself out looking across the River Evenload towards Wychwood Forest. The substantial church of St Nicholas is enriched by a fascinating array of gargoyles. There are good walks in the area.

Churchill

The Oxfordshire village of Churchill is located close to the county border with Gloucestershire between the towns of Stow-on-the-Wold and Chipping Norton (3 miles south). The village has had a few variations in its name through history, including Cercelle, Churchell, and Cherchell, but the current name dates from 1537.

A stroll around the village can be interesting and at weekends during the summer months, a visit to the Village Heritage Centre will help visitors to understand the local history. The centre contains old maps and village records from the 17th century including some interesting facts about Churchill's two famous son's Warren Hastings (1732 - 1818), the first Governor General of India and a memorial exists to William Smith (1769 – 1839) said to be the "Father of British Geology".

The village church tower of All Saints stands prominent over the North Cotswolds. The tower is a reduced version of Magdalene College, Oxford and forms part of the church built by the village squire, James Haughton Langston, the younger, whose life is remembered in the village by an elaborate fountain. The hammerbeam roof is a copy from Christ Church in Oxford. There also exists in the village an unusual Victorian Gothic fountain.

Clanfield

Clanfield is an attractive village having two greens in the broad acres of the river Thames valley east of Lechlade which makes good farming country.

A stream flows between houses and the High Street.

Ducklington

Ducklington is close to the River Windrush and the main road now bypasses the village. The village has a beautiful pond on the green. The church tithe barn has become the village community hall.

Village memories of life in the 1920's make interesting reading in the writings of Mollie Harris (died October 1995) who grew up here. Mollie Harris also played the character Martha Woodford in The Archers.

 

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Oxfordshire Cotswolds

This page last modified Monday, 16-Jun-2014 13:48:31 BST