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Alternative resting places

We recently (June 2014) travelled in England and found a couple of great spots to stay that are budget-friendly. First - we stayed in Bradford-on-Avon, a small town 15 minutes direct train from Bath. This is a wonderful "village" with a Saxon Church, some historical sites, and a river running through the centre. There are some great places to stay, the town is friendly and the food/beer/etc. is great. (We stayed in a tourist apartment on a street called The Shambles - very nice!)
The second discovery was a town on the NW edge of the Cotswolds called Tewkesbury. Again - travel in the Cotswold area is easy and convenient (a direct bus to Oxford is about 90 minutes), the town is larger and has pretty much everything that a traveller could need, and has one of the few remaining Norman churches left standing. It's also the site of an important battle in the War of the Roses and there's a good museum there about that. We stayed in one of the Landmark Trust "cottages" - a weavers cottage that was part of a 3-unit set on a quiet lane way - a very affordable and comfortable accommodation. Tewkesbury has a lovely Victorian Garden, the Abbey, the best curry we've had in a long time and great shops.
You don't have to stay in the big places to see the big places - or to see the best places, either!

Posted by
359 posts

Great recommendations! Thank you. Planning to travel to Bath and Oxford next year so I will remember these.

Posted by
1589 posts

Great memories from Tewkesbury, Robert. We happened to be in that quiet little village one time for a small, but moving, little parade thru the town.

Posted by
2636 posts

Robert, thanks for the great information. I have also read your "Tewkesbury; Great Places To Eat" and "Bath Coffee Shops" postings under England reviews. I do hope you will write a trip report! Sounds like you had a very interesting trip!

Posted by
1838 posts

I agree, Bradford-upon-Avon (Wiltshire) is really handy for Bath - which can be easily reached by train. Nearby Frome (Somerset) is also worth a visit as is Longleat House & Safari Park.

Tewkesbury has excellent road communications with fast links to Birmingham as well as south Wales. Nearby Cheltenham is also worth a visit whilst just to the east are some of the best Cotswold villages. Stratford-upon-Avon is also an easy drive whilst to the north are the Malvern Hills.

The M50 will speed you west to southern Wales. You can be over the Welsh border in about 20 minutes and then into the Wye Valley area of outstanding natural beauty. The Brecon Beacons National Park is about a 50 minute drive to the west. Herefordshire - on the Welsh Marches (border country between England & Wales) has some lovely old towns & villages (such as Ledbury) which have black & white beamed buildings.

For those without a car. Tewkesbury is not such a good option as it is not on the rail network. However, it does have a station at nearby Ashchurch (too far to walk) but many trains do not stop at this place.

Posted by
7 posts

James - your point about lack of train connections is true, but we didn't have a car (nervous Canadian drivers!) and we didn't feel like we had any issues with being connected when we were in Tewkesbury. The train station bus stop is right outside the platform; buses are frequent into the centre of town and once in the town there are 3 primary bus stops that will get you pretty much anywhere in the area without a lot of hassle: we had a direct connect to Heathrow that was pleasant enough that we didn't miss the train, and we managed Oxford as a day trip (we just made sure we have books for the trip back! : - )
To each their own: we'd go back in a heartbeat.

Posted by
908 posts

Robert, I'll be honest, when I saw your subject line I thought this was going to be about a desire to be buried in England!

But that's not what you meant by "resting places!" :)

Posted by
1838 posts

Robert: pleased to read that you were OK without a car in Tewkesbury & that they have frequent buses to Ashchurch rail station as well as elsewhere.