Tetbury is a wonderful town in the Cotswolds, Gloucestershire. It is on the site of an ancient hill fort and an Anglo-Saxon monastery which was founded in 681. It is also near Highgrove Gardens (www.highgrovegardens.com). Highgrove is the private residence of TRH The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall. Prince Charles got Highgrove in the 1980s and he transformed the house and the gardens. There is a shop in Tetbury, see at the end of the post, and the gardens can be visited on certain days, with a guided tour. I’d love to visit them someday.
Besides the impressive Royal connections, Tetbury is a stunning town with a lot of history and it is in an area of outstanding natural beauty. During the Middle Ages it was an important market for wool and yarn.
Many buildings in Tetbury are graded listing, made with natural stone for which the Cotswolds are famous. These wonderful houses were built by wool-staplers with profits they made selling the wool. Cloth was not made in Tetbury, as there isn’t running water suitable for mills.
St Mary The Virgin Church is a lovely building, dating back to the 1770s, that replaced a medieval church. The tower and spire were built 100 years later. Inside there are panels about Tetbury’s history, so it is worth a quick visit.
The Grade 1 listed Market House in the centre of Tetbury was built in 1655 by Tetbury Feoffees and is still owned by them to this day. The Feoffees were founded 20 years earlier, at the time it was a group of four locals who bought the advowsons from the landowner. They took responsibility for the town’s future.
The Market House has used, during the years, for administration of the Town, sales of wool, and under the entrance steps for storage of the hand fire pump. It was used as a “lock up” before the Police Station was built. The Market Hall is still used today for Craft Fairs, Exhibitions, Sales, and Private Functions. While underneath, markets taking place every week, as you can see in the next picture.
After all that walking, we’ve stopped for some refreshments, hot chocolate and brownies. At The Ormond, a coaching inn from the 17th century. The pub is located just opposite the Highgrove store.
This is the Highgrove shop, opened in 2008. The profits from the sale of the products, and furthermore of the money raised with garden tours and events are donated to The Prince of Wales’s Charitable Foundation. The charity gives grants which supports a wide range of causes and projects. If you want to support them, check their online shop.
I had a look around, the shop is beautiful, and, of course, I bought a few things. Unsurprisingly, I got a book for myself, the one with the Queen’s English. My husband bought the puzzle book. We now have the second book too and we try to make the puzzles. They are very hard, but fun. I’m not as bothered if I don’t make them as I thought I would be. Also, some are a bit strange, with references to British TV shows or movies I don’t know. Nevertheless, it is a fun book to have.
The little vase was on offer and I had to have it. I love small vases and I do use them. When I buy a bunch of flowers, sometimes I put a flower or two in many vases and have one in each room. Thus, small vases are important for me. I should have bought two, but well, I didn’t.
My husband’s favourite honey is acacia. So, when we saw the honey we bought it. It is from Transylvania. As you might know, Prince Charles has a property in Transylvania, that he bought after the fall of the Communism in Romania. It is widely discussed in Romania about his visits and most people are very excited about the British Royal Family (it had connections with the late King Michael of Romania, the King we’ve had before the Communists took power).
My husband loved it, as we knew he would. I’m not keen on acacia, I prefer strong flavours when it comes to honey, like heather or pine.
Have you ever been to Highgrove or Tetbury?