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A cultural journey through the Cotswolds

Posted: Mon, 10th Jun 2024

For thousands of years, people have lived, worked and crafted in the Cotswolds, each leaving their unique mark on the area. This has left a rich well for modern artists, musicians and creatives to draw from – and our guide to Cotswold culture pays homage to this. From the melodies of Longborough Festival Opera to the world-renowned art collections at The Wilson, it’s time to buy your ticket, order a drink and enjoy!


Music

Longborough Festival Opera
An intimate, 500 seat theatre overlooking the Cotswold countryside, Longborough Festival Opera presents a season of sublime music every year from June to August. Founded in 1991 by Martin and Lizzie Graham, who turned an empty field into nothing less than an institution in the opera world, there are two bars that open 90 minutes before each performance so you can sip a flute of champagne before the operatics begin.

Burford Jazz Club
Established in 2017, Burford Jazz Club holds monthly concerts in a friendly, club like environment. With the beautiful Warwick Hall as its backdrop, it’s a low-key way to indulge in the smooth rhythms of this style of music. There’s also an excellent bar for a pre-show tipple!


Theatre

Everyman Theatre
Inspired by continental theatres and the ‘Little Theatre’ movement in the USA, the Everyman Theatre in Cheltenham invites you to enjoy magical performances amid ornate surroundings. Shows traverse drama, dance and comedy, and there’s plenty of options for lunch and afternoon tea, while Matcham’s restaurant provides pre-show supper.

The Barn Theatre
A registered charity, award-winning theatre and producing house, The Barn Theatre aims to inspire visitors and build community. And with performances spanning from classic to contemporary drawing in both residents and tourists alike, it certainly achieves that. While the theatre’s excellent bar is on-hand during the evening, this place doubles as a coffee spot in the daytime.


Art

The Wilson Art Gallery & Museum
Situated in the heart of Cheltenham, The Wilson Art Gallery & Museum in Cheltenham hosts a rich and varied decorative art collection that’ll leave you dazzled. The spot is also home to an internationally significant Arts and Crafts Movement collection featuring silverware, textiles, ceramics and paintings – many of which were inspired by the work of William Morris.

Fosse Gallery
Since its conception in 1980, Fosse Gallery has featured some of the UK’s leading artists, including John Wragg and Charlie Calder-Potts. Set in its charming original location in Stow-on-the-Wold, this rural outpost holds both solo exhibitions and seasonal shows and has a peaceful ambience that we just can’ get enough of.


Creative

Honeybourne Pottery
Nestled in a beautiful village on the fringe of the Cotswolds, Honeybourne Pottery is a slice of creative heaven. Offering bespoke pottery workshops for all abilities, it’s an excellent way to embrace the therapeutic benefits of working with clay while connecting with others. Choose it to celebrate a special occasion or gather with friends and family to try pottery for the first time.

The Flower Hut
Based in Tetbury, The Flower Hut is the creation of visionary owner, Hannah Lee – a Chelsea Flower Show silver medallist. Providing botanicals for all occasions, the hut holds workshops which start with a wander through the flower patch where narcissi, tulips and alliums will inspire you before the creative process begins. Workshops are seasonal with Christmas wreath making, hand tied bouquets for spring, and floral crown making in summer.


Where to stay

Cheltenham

The Old Tractor Shed
Green hills and honey-hued houses form a breathtaking backdrop for The Old Tractor Shed. Inviting you to indulge in countryside living, it’s just footsteps from Cheltenham, while local hotspots Winchcombe and Stow-on-the-Wold lie nearby.

Longborough

Yew Tree Cottage
Yew Tree Cottage is a delightful double-fronted Cotswold stone cottage, part of which dates back to the 16th Century. Nestled on Longborough’s picturesque high street, it’s a short stroll from the village pub and exudes quintessential rural character.

Burford

Old Manse
Just a stroll from the town of Burford, the Old Manse is a glorious hideaway to gather friends and family. We love its setting close to rolling countryside, and a plethora of independent shops, cafes and restaurants.

Cirencester

Peach Cottage
Peach Cottage invites you to gather friends and family for a Cotswolds retreat thanks to abundant outside space and comfortable living rooms. Burrowed in a sleepy village, this Grade II listed cottage dates back to the 17th century in parts and has plenty of character with beams and stone flooring.

Near Honeybourne

Rose Cottage
With hares dancing across the roof and a colour pop front garden, this Grade II-listed cottage is an enchanting hideaway. As well as plenty of character, Rose Cottage sleeps five and welcomes two dogs who will love exploring the nearby countryside.

Tetbury

New Church Cottage
New Church Cottage is a beautiful townhouse displaying an air of Georgian elegance. The cottage is in the heart of Tetbury, one of the Cotswolds’ most famous towns, while it’s elevated by a wood burning stove and charming courtyard.

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