This week we have been taking a look at local businesses in the Cotswolds that have created new business ventures from historic buildings or reinventing their functions and directions that they were heading.
Firstly we can take a look at our own story here at Notgrove. With farming not being as prosperous as it has been and farm buildings being sat unused and costing us money, Harry had a great idea. So this is where the newly built holiday barns came to life! With the pods just a twinkle in Harry’s eyes at this early stage but not too far away.
Notgrove Estate was a busy running farm at one point with Cattle for milking and plenty of arable land. As the times have changed for farming over the years the Cows went and the farm side of the business seemed to ‘down size’ resulting In empty barns.
Now the barns are providing lovely accommodation for our guests and earning their keep for us again. Notgrove is still very much a farming village but to a smaller degree.
The Old Prison, Northleach
It first opened in 1972 as the House of Correction and continued its use as a Court and Police station over the next 200 years.
Now The old Prison is the base for The Cotswold Discovery Center. Here they have a fantastic café and gift shop filled with local goodies and treats. It is also the home to the Cotswold Conservation Board and The Cotswold Dry Stone Walling Academy. Quite often they hold displays relevant to these subjects which are always an interesting experience.
Broadway being an idyllic place to visit anyway has a beautiful 18th century Tower sat at the top of the hill keeping a watch over the old market town. Throughout the years the tower has had a number of jobs. One being home to a printing press of ‘Sir Thomas Philips’ a great collector of manuscripts and books.
It also had frequent visits from Pre Raphaelite artists such as William Morris, Dante Gabriel Rossetti and Edward Burne-Jones.
Now more importantly its residents are of the four legged variety. This is an amazing herd of stunning Red Deer which you can see wandering around the tower.
You can look around the exhibitions in the tower and stroll over to the ‘Cold War Bunker’ . Once you have finished soaking up the history and tremendous views you could refresh and refill in the ‘Morris and Brown Café’, not to be missed!
Guiting Power Post Office
Guiting Power is a charming village a few miles away from Notgrove and really is a ‘must see’ when staying here.
In the centre of Guiting you will stumble across The Old Post Office. It oozes charm and as its name would suggest it was once a fully running Post Office and still is on a Tuesday and Thursday.
Its main job today is to provide you with wonderful choices of cakes and hot or cold lunches or even a hearty breakfast. They can also send you home with some home-made frozen dishes for your supper.
It’s a great little meeting place where you can even pick up an antique gift or two to take home with you or just chill and enjoy its true Cotswold style whilst reading the paper.
Cotswold Wildlife Park
It once was just a family estate in need of a new lease of life. So in the 70’s Reggie Heyworth’s father decided to share his interest of nature with as many people as he could. Now it’s a thriving self-supporting attraction being one of the UK’s largest Zoological collections and gardens. The park supports an educational programme, endangered species breeding and wild conservation projects in the world. So I think he definitely achieved his goal.
It’s a fantastic day out to be had whatever the weather , whatever your age and after several visits I never get bored of it.
This truly amazing, swanky ( you can’t often use that word to its full credit) restaurant and deli situated just around the corner from The Montpelier Gardens in Cheltenham once started off as the first purpose-built Picture Palace in the 1920’s. After years of dilapidation the building finally fell into the sympathetic hands of Mark Stephens and his business partner James Mc Alpine who saw the true potential in the beautiful building. They have restored and re-energized the old cinema so that it’s oozing with charm once again to create this sophisticated and stylish restaurant and deli.
If you want to start celebrating the beginning of the weekend in style you could head there and enjoy one of their freshly prepared homemade afternoon teas. These are available on Fridays and Saturdays from 2.30pm until 5. Or why not put your glad rags on and tantalize your taste-buds with their scrumptious evening menu.
You definitely feel like you have treated yourself after visiting here. A must do!!