It’s raining this morning, but we’re not deterred and set off for a sight seeing tour around the Cotswolds. First up: Lacock village, often used as background for TV series and movies. 4£ to use the mandatory car park and it turns out we can’t visit the famous abbey, as filming is going on right this minute! After a quick stroll through the admittedly picturesque little village we continue on, following charming roads towards Burton. Charming means uneven and narrow, but the views of the country side are pretty even through the drizzle.
We have some trouble finding Minster Lovell Hall & Dovecote (doesn’t such a name make you really curious), it cannot be very popular since it’s not very well signposted. After turning back we find a tiny parking area and continue on foot, more or less guessing we’ll find the ruins behind the church. Access is free, but even so the site is well maintained and has several information panels describing the history of the place. The ruins are quite big and look very charming, located as they are by a small river and surrounded by giant trees, fields and hills. We manage to locate the dovecote, I didn’t know what to expect but it turns out to be a tower-like structure with cotes for about 900 doves inside, built in the 15th century. Unfortunately it is closed and we cannot look inside.
From here we take the scenic route, choising the smaller roads to get from one village to the next. First we pass by Lower Slaughter, mostly closed for filming, so we drive on to closeby Upper Slaughter. Again very charming, though I will most likely remember it for the excellent Cream Tea in a luxury hotel in the centre. Afternoon Tea, Cream Tea and High Tea are different things, did you know?
By now it’s after three, so we start making our way to Chipping Campden, where we’re staying for the night. One stop left, we convince the ticket office to let us in even though the hour of last admittance has past and walk around Sudely Castle, part of which is still lived in and other parts are in ruins, very picturesque. The garden itself is beautiful, it’s too early for the roses but the cherry trees are resplendent with blooms. It too is surrounded by giant trees, this is becoming a theme in our voyage. The pheasantry is fun too: I did not have the ambition to see so many different types of pheasants, but the males are so colourful that it becomes amusing.