This gem of an old English town lies at the meeting point of seven roads, which includes the ancient Roman Fosse Way. At 800 foot above sea level it is the highest of the Cotswold towns. It has a long history dating back thousands of years, originating as a prehistoric settlement on top of the hill. Once the centre of the prosperous Cotswold wool industry, it is now just a quiet cluster of honey-coloured stone houses and coaching inns.

Stow on the Wold Market Square
Stow on the Wold Market Square © Travel About Britain

The town once hosted the largest sheep fair in the Cotswolds, where thousands of sheep were gathered into the town's large square ready for auction. A number of walled alleyways (or tures) still lead into the square, originally designed for herding-in the livestock. The sheep have all but gone and the square is now used as a convenient parking place for the thousands of visitors who come each year to visit its antique emporiums, gift shops, galleries and specialist craft shops.

Stow on the Wold Village Green
Stow on the Wold Village Green © Travel About Britain

A group of very fine 17th/18th century stone buildings surround the square. On one side sits the old Medieval Market Cross and on the other is a picturesque village green, complete with a set of original 19th-c wooden stocks. The Gothic style Assembly Rooms, set in the middle of the square were built during the Victorian era. A regular Farmers Market is held on 2nd Thursday of each month (9am to 1pm).

Norman church of St Edward, to the west, was used to hold 1000 royalist prisoners after the final battle of the Civil War, which took place in neighbouring Donnington. The chancel and nave is note for its fine stained glass.

Stow has a great choice of restaurants, bistros and tea shops, plus a wide choice of gastro and foodie pubs. For those wishing to stay-over, there is good an provision of hotels, guest houses and self catering establishments, including the excellent Royalist Hotel, Stow Lodge Hotel and The Old Stocks Inn in the square.

Places of Interest Around Stow-on-the-Wold

Fosse Gallery

Located in the Manor House on the Square, this private art dealers is one of the most important galleries outside of London. Displaying and selling some of the best contemporary British fine art since 1980.

Opening times: Monday - Saturday, 10.30am - 5pm
Location: The Manor House, The Square, Stow-on-the-Wold GL54 1AF
Tel: 01451 831319

Stow Cricket Museum

An interesting collection of Cricketing artifacts from around the world tells the history of the game and provides an insight into its most illustrious players.

Opening times: closed until further notice
Location: 7 Sheep St, Stow-on-the-Wold, Cheltenham GL54 1AA
Tel: 01451 870083

Map of Stow-on-the-Wold


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