Wool, Wiltshire and All Manner of Wonderful Things!

Corsham, town walk.

So, I have joined a U3a group which once a month explores a town or village focusing on its history and development. Perfect for me who is still learning about the area I moved to two years ago. As it happens we actually did some house hunting here in Corsham, and whilst we liked the houses realised the town was just that little bit too far for us to visit our London based family within a daytrip. As far as I recall we did have a pitstop coffee break in the modern arcade of shops but totally missed all the more interesting and attractive parts of the town. Had we seen them it might have made our decision much harder.

Anyway let’s begin,

Once a private home, this is now an Independent (fee paying) school. The town was clearly very prosperous at one time. Many huge houses all built upon the wool trade for which the Cotswold area is famous.

There are also many peacocks that have free reign in the town. We spotted three but my photo was rubbish.

The row of cottages on the right were built for the Flemish weavers in the 17th century by Paul Methuen, Lord of the Manor living in Corsham Court. The weavers had fled religious persecution in their own country. Their skill ensured the importance of the wool trade for the town until the 19th century and the Industrial Revolution.

The chaps you can see right hand side up ladders were repairing the old wooden sash windows, and making a right old racket. Our guide had to shout! The cottage to the right with the White windows was the site of the town’s First fire station built circa 1800.

The yellow house was once a Temperance Hotel.

Note the little mouse on this memorial to a local dignatory that was added by the team that carried out the restoration in 2007.
Building on the right is now the town hall, previously called the Methuen Hall and built as a market hall. The lower part was originally open, but closed in 1882 to facilitate the building of the second floor. During the first World war it was used as a hospital for soldiers, in total 875 men were treated here by 75 nurses.

Apparently the pub next door does a good lunch!

The High Street which has been used in many a Costume drama including a fictitious town in The Suspicions of Mr Whicher and standing in for Truro in Poldark.
At the end of the High Street is Corsham Court- a Saxon Royal Manor House, home to the Metheun Family, and rebuilt in 1582 as an Elizabethan house. Open to the public, I shall return for a visit.
St Bartholomew’s church is conveniently next door. I’ll be back to see inside too, but we were headed off to see this gravestone.
Well I never. Maybe I won’t need to replace my gold tooth after all!

We had a brief stroll down an attractive avenue of trees from the house through the park to see the Almshouses.

It included a schoolroom, a masters house and six dwellings and stands in four acres of land. Built in 1688 for Lady Margaret Hungerford, widow of Lord Edward Hungerford who commanded Cromwell’s Wiltshire forces during the Civil War.

There is still so much to see in this town. It really was a treat to visit. Hope you enjoyed it too!

Comments on: "Corsham, town walk." (18)

  1. Ah I see we were very close recently when we visited Lacock Abbey, gardens village and museum. Nice area of Wiltshire.

  2. Great photos, all that history is amazing to live among!

  3. Looks fascinating and such a timeless look with all that stone. I can see why it gets used for TV dramas. Definitely a place worth visiting again to see all the things you didn’t have time for on your first visit.

  4. Looks a beautiful place to explore. I would love to see the peacocks! Maybe they will pose for you next time. 🙂

  5. So many things I would love to explore!

  6. Going Batty in Wales said:

    I like the idea of a trip like that. Someone else organises it, you go with a group of people who might become friends and you get a guide. The downside is being huirried along when there is something you want to look at for longer. But you can go again on your own with a clearer idea of what you want to see. It looks such a pretty and interesting town.

  7. I love the idea of a group of ladies visiting places they wouldn’t normally get to see all together. We have nothing so lovely here in the west of our young country.

  8. claire93 said:

    lol wondering if “fresh teeth” was a toothpaste of the time who sponsored her and paid for her tombstone ^^

  9. An interesting walk making an informative post, I love local history like this 🙂

  10. I did enjoy it! That gravestone! So funny! but 107! amazing.
    Very interesting details all around.

  11. Fascinating! Thank you so much for taking us along!

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