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Chipping Campden Things to Do: 37 reviews and 63 photos
The Town Hall, Chipping Campden
I took a photo of this building without knowing what it was. I simply thought it was lovely: it looked really ancient - made of stone and with a stone porch, a clock and many other interesting features. Back at home I tried to find its characteristic shape on the Internet - in vain. Instead, I found a link to the Campden Archives where they invited inquiries and sent an e-mail to them. The reply came almost immediately - thank you, Carol Jackson - the building was the Town Hall of Chipping Campden. Dating back to the 1400's, it stands in the middle of the Market Square and over the years has had many uses. It has served as a school room, a gaol, a Court House, a Wool Exchange, a library, a dance hall and even housed the fire brigade wagon. Nowadays it is used for meetings, exhibitions, lectures and hired for weddings and other celebrations. Wouldn't it be great to have your wedding party there?
Directions: In the centre of Market Square
St Catherine's Church
The Catholic Church of St Catharine was built in 1891 in the Victorian Gothic style, but with some arts and crafts touches, e.g. woodwork, carving, stained glass windows. The land for the site was provided by the 3rd Earl of Gainsborough, Charles William Francis Noel, whose father had converted to Catholicism, so there was a need for a Catholic church in Chipping Campden. The architect was William Lunn of Malvern. The church boasts beautiful stained glass windows made by Paul Woodroffe.
The Church and its school run by nuns played an important role after World War II when there were many displaced Polish families living nearby at the Springhill National Hostel for displaced persons. Hidden up a lane behind the church are some sad Polish graves of those who did not live to see Poland free.
I wish to thank Carol Jackson of the Cadhas Archive Room Team for information on this church.
Directions: At the south end of the High Street
Houses in the High Street, Chipping Campden
The High Street of Chipping Campden is lined with many superb Cotswold stone buildings. Varying in style, they were built by wealthy merchants between the 14th and 17th centuries. At its north end is the 14th century Grevel House, the oldest house in the town, with its beautifully decorated windows, gargoyles and a sundial set in one of the walls. Another building which we did not get to because of the heat. But the other houses are just as beautiful and each is different, representing a great diversity of styles and tastes. Inside there are numerous businesses, many of them continuing the long held traditions of local crafts: potters, jewellers, stonecarvers, silver and gold smiths, builders specialising in traditional Cotswold building and many more.
I think it is because of the heat, which kept people in their houses, that the town looked sleepy and deserted on the day we came. But the people that were there all seemed to know each other, standing in the street exchanging news and gossip, or just saying hello to the passers-by.
Address: The High Street
Chipping Campden Market Hall
The Market Hall, in the centre of the High Street, is probably the best known building in Chipping Campden. It was constructed in 1627 by Sir Baptist Hicks, Viscount Campden, to give shelter to market traders. Sir Baptist Hicks is renowned for his generosity to the poor and needy. In 1612 he founded the Almshouses where twelve poor men and women lived on an allowance given to them weekly. They are now inhabited by twelve pensioners. Although the Market Hall is now owned by The National Trust, it is still used for its original purpose and a notice inside lists the rules of its use.
Directions: In the centre of the Market Square
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