It is said that Shakespeare loved a tipple in The Falcon Inn (now cottages) and came with a team from Stratford – six miles upstream – for a drinking competition. Bidford’s revellers won and worse-for-wear William refused a return match. Today’s local inns and eateries continue to offer generous hospitality, while points of interest around town include the famous bridge built by monks 600 years ago. Another landmark, St Laurence Church, has already celebrated its 800th anniversary.
Bidford-on-Avon is a popular mooring point for canal boats heading for Stratford-upon-Avon and you can also hire boats in the village. Or simply relax, enjoy the Big Meadow and riverside walks. Find accommodation in Bidford-on-Avon.
Be inspired by a garden that is a masterpiece of Arts & Crafts style, created by horticulturist Major Lawrence Johnston. Hidcote, in the north Cotswolds, is designed as a series of outdoor 'rooms', each with a special character and each peaking at different times in the year, providing fresh interest whenever you visit, from spring bulbs to autumn's vibrant Red Border. View rare shrubs and trees, remarkable herbaceous borders and unusual plant species, as well as vistas across the Vale of Evesham.
Go behind the scenes of a defining moment in history at Coughton Court, home of the Throckmortons since 1409. Members of this old, Catholic family were among conspirators in the 1605 Gunpowder Plot to blow up Parliament and features like the priest’s hole bear testament to the bravery of the Throckmortons’ beliefs during a dangerous age. The story of personalities who helped to bring about Catholic emancipation can also be followed through the ‘family album’ of portraits and treasures around this fine Tudor house. Highlight of the award-winning gardens is the walled garden brimming with roses and herbaceous plants.
Why not mix town and countryside, and Shakespeare with the Gunpowder Plot? This 27-mile circuit around central Warwickshire includes a level, traffic-free canal towpath stretch, and shortcuts also make 20- and 11-mile rides. Start this trail from any of the numerous local villages and attractions, such as Mary Arden’s (home of Shakespeare’s mother). Places of interest near the route include Anne Hathaway's Cottage, Edstone canal aqueduct, historic Alcester and Kinwarton Dovecote.
Alcester was a Roman town and has been the subject of numerous archaeological digs: find out more in the fine heritage centre. Medieval buildings and street patterns remain part of today's vibrant market town, which is famous for its summer in bloom – bring your camera. This 7-mile walk sets the town into its surrounding environment with the gently flowing River Arrow and villages of Exhall, Wixford and Oversley Green.
Run by David, Ann and Sara Turner and their families, Ellenden Farm Shop is in the beautiful Vale of Evesham – an area renowned for high quality fruit and vegetables. Buy fresh produce from our farm or sourced from local independent suppliers, including free-range meats, the Vale’s renowned asparagus and delicious handmade pies.
Savour naturally reared meats direct from the Ragley Estate and local farms. We offer a traditional butcher shop service – choose from delicious cuts of beef, lamb and pork – and fresh game and venison in season. Tuck into handmade pies (from a secret family recipe), our famous faggots, traditional sausages and other treats.
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