Distance 1 mile (1.6 km) Duration 1 hr Calories 150 (est.)
This historical tour will explore the bustling, Cotswold market town of Chipping Norton located at the ‘Gateway to the Cotswolds’. ‘Chippy’, as it is known to the locals, boasts its own museum, housing a large collection of town related artefacts, an award-winning theatre and is renowned for its antique shops, boutiques, diverse shopping and a great choice of places to eat. The town’s working market town atmosphere not only makes it a fantastic place to visit but an ideal base for exploring the wealth of nearby attractions such as The Rollright Stones, Blenheim Palace and the Cotswold Wildlife Park.
The highest town in Oxfordshire, Chipping Norton, simply referred to as ‘Norton’ in the 1086 Domesday survey, is situated on the western slopes of a hillside that was once the site of a Norman castle. The site of the castle is now Scheduled as an Ancient Monument. In 1205 King John granted the town a Royal charter no doubt helping it to become a centre for the Cotswold wool trade and by 1224 ‘Chipping’, old English for market, was added to the town’s name. Success continued and by the first half of the 14th Century Chipping Norton was one of the most prosperous market towns in Oxfordshire.
Today the town is known for its heritage, including 126 listed structures, stunningly beautiful countryside and its lively year round calendar of events including a Literary Festival and regular markets.
This 1.0 mile historic trail takes you from the Town Hall on the bustling high street to the old Hitchman’s Brewery over to the Norman Castle banks, past the Almshouses and medieval Guildhall and then back up to the town centre, taking in 1,000 years of history.