Historic Houses

Glories of yesteryear

Here in the north Cotswolds, you can’t go a mile without tripping over history. From the spectacular gardens of Hidcote Manor to the Shakespeare-infused air of Stratford-upon-Avon, there is a wealth of history-rich attractions that make ideal Dormy day trips.

Snowshill Manor
Drive time: 15 mins

Once the home of prolific collector Charles Wade, this Tudor manor house holds a trove of unexpected treasures, gathered over the course of Wade’s life, and now displayed in the house’s atmospheric rooms. Outside, the gardens are full of tranquil nooks and corners to explore and unwind in.

www.nationaltrust.org.uk/snowshill-manor

 

Sudeley Castle 

Drive time: 23 mins
A 15th-century castle not far from the scenic town of Winchcombe, Sudeley is a statuesque Tudor relic with award-winning gardens to wander. It’s also the final resting place of Katherine Parr, the last wife of Henry VIII.
www.sudeleycastle.co.uk

 

Anne Hathaway’s Cottage

Drive time: 27 mins
Set just outside scenic Stratford, this thatched farmhouse was the childhood home to Shakespeare’s wife, and has preserved its 15th-century good looks and country charm ever since. The gardens, with their lavender maze and sculpture trail, make for a delightful afternoon stroll.
www.shakespeare.org.uk

 

Coughton Court

Drive time: 30 mins

 

This grand country pile has been the home of the Throckmorton family since 1409, and has a unique place in English history thanks to its links with the Gunpowder Plot of 1605. It sits on 25 acres of immaculately tended gardens and grounds.
www.coughtoncourt.co.uk

 

Tewkesbury Abbey

Drive time: 33 mins

With the world’s largest Norman church tower, Tewkesbury Abbey dominates the town’s skyline. Built in the 12th century, it’s a breath-taking feat of medieval architecture, and home to an extensive collection of stained glass form across the ages.

www.tewkesburyabbey.org.uk

 

Chedworth Roman Villa

Drive time: 37 mins
Unearthed over 150 years ago, the ruins of Chedworth are all that remains of one of Roman Britain’s grandest homes.  Alongside ornate mosaics and ancient artefacts, the villa hosts a busy schedule of interactive activities for kids.

www.nationaltrust.org.uk/chedworth-roman-villa

 

Broughton Castle

Drive time: 39 mins
Open to the public on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Sundays in summer (plus a handful of bank holidays), this moated manor near Banbury is one of the most attractive in England. Recognisable from numerous film appearances, the 14th-century castle is graced with spectacular walled gardens and stained glass.
www.broughtoncastle.com

 

Kenilworth Castle

Drive time: 46 mins
Kenilworth has seen more English history than the dustiest Oxbridge professor, passing through the great families of Britain for nine centuries before English Heritage took over. Today, The proudly rugged ruins – and impeccably kept gardens – make a remarkable day out for all ages.
www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/kenilworth-castle