About Bibury

Bibury is a charming, typically Cotswold, village just a short drive from “The Capital of the Cotswolds”, Cirencester.

Located on the River Coln in hilly west-central England, Bibury was described by 19th-century artist-writer William Morris as “the most beautiful village in England”—which is saying something in a country known for its watercolor views. Honey-colored 17th-century stone cottages, the Saxon Church of St. Mary, and a still-working 1902 trout farm are some of the ancient village’s must-sees. The most photographed spot is Arlington Row, a collection of 14th-century stone buildings that were converted into weavers’ cottages in the 1600s. -Source by Fox News

 

History

In the Domesday Book (1086), a record of survey done under William the Conqueror, the place is named Becheberie, and it is recorded that the lands and church in Bibury were held by St. Mary’s Priory at Worcester, from whom it passed in 1130 to the Abbey of Osney, near Oxford: the Abbey continued to hold it until the dissolution of the abbey in 1540.

The Church of England parish church of Saint Mary is Saxon with later additions. From AD 1130 until the English Reformation during the sixteenth century, it was a peculier of Osney Abbey in Oxford.[2] Adjacent to the church is the village primary school that was built in the 1850s. The school currently[when?] has approximately 30 pupils in 2 classes. On the Arlington (west) side of the village is Arlington Baptist Church, where a congregation has been meeting since the 1740s.

Late in the nineteenth century George Witts recounted the discovery of the Bibury Roman villa: “In the year 1880 a Roman villa was accidentally discovered in the parish of Bibury, about six miles northeast of Cirencester. Some Roman pottery, coins, remnants of tesselated pavements, &c., were found, but as no examination has yet taken place, no description of the building can be given.” –George Witts, 1883.

On May 2, 2000, Daniel Brennan KCSG, QC was made “Baron Brennan, of Bibury”. Source by Wikipedia

 

Attractions

Arlington Row

Arlington Row is a very pretty row of medieval cottages set beside a water meadow. In fact, the scene is so beguiling that Henry Ford tried to have the entire street shipped back to America. His plan failed and the Society of Arts bought the Row instead. Today it is owned by the National Trust, which claims it is probably the most photographed street in the UK. The cottages are actually a very early barn conversion, as they were converted from a medieval store in the 17th century. Arlington Row appears in the 2007 film Stardust.

Bibury Mill

Bibury and Arlington grew up around the River Colne and the milling industry. In fact, some of the villages’ mills are recorded in the Domesday Book. Bibury Mill dates from 18th century and was used for corn milling until the 1920s. The mill is set well away from any roads and surrounded by a cluster of Cotswold cottages – a very peaceful and pretty scene. The nearby remains of a Roman Villa testify to the age of this settlement.

St Mary’s Church

Evidence suggests that there was probably a church here long before the Norman Conquest. The earliest surviving features include Anglo Saxon graves, square Saxon jambs and posts and possible Saxon windows. Other Saxon artefacts from the church are now housed in the British Museum. Look out for the beautiful 13th century font and stained glass window – designed by Karl Parsons – so impressive it featured on a 1992 Royal Mail Christmas Stamp.

Bibury Trout Farm

Bibury Trout Farm is one of the oldest – founded in 1902 – and certainly the most attractive trout farm in the country. Primarily a working farm breeding and rearing high quality trout for restocking angling waters it has welcomed visitors since 1965. Facilities include a quality gift shop, fish counter, delicatessen, refreshments, plant sales, picnic areas, play area, cycle hire, childrens parties, car park and small ‘catch your own’ fishery – all equipment is provided and staff available to help, making it ideal for children and beginners. Farm open daily, but please check fishery opening times.

Church of St Peter and St Paul

Northleach church has been called the Cathedral of the Cotswolds. A wool church, it owes its magnificence to the wealth of the booming wool trade of the 15th century. Famous for its large light nave, the church has many outstanding windows. Among them, the Cotswold Window, an enormous window over the chancel arch, which dates from 1430, and the modern East Window, designed by Chris Web in 1963. Other features include a 13th century font and a fine 15th century stone pulpit.

Bingham House

Daniel Bingham made his fortune on the Dutch railways. Born in Black Jack Street here in Cirencester, he returned to his hometown to become a major benefactor. Among his gifts is Bingham House. Completed in 1904 by V A Lawson, it used to house the Bingham Library, which has since moved. Today, a gallery here displays works by local artists illustrating the history of this ancient market town. In addition, Millenium Embroidery, the acclaimed work of a group of Cirencester residents is also on display.

River Coln

The River Coln flows from Charlton Abbots in Gloucestershire to the River Thames at Lechlade. Bibury owes much of its rich history to the river, which for centuries powered the corn and wool mills here. Today, the river frequently floods into the village’s famous water meadow, making it a haven for water-loving plants, wildfowl and birds. It is thought that the River takes its name from the Celtic word for water – colauno.

Rack Isle

Rack Isle is an ancient water meadow, an important wildlife refuge and one of the most picturesque spots in the Cotswolds. Set beside the old weavers’ cottages of Arlington Row, it takes its name from the wooden racks on which finished cloth was dried. Old Tythe maps show that the meadow was also used for grazing. The Isle was given to the National Trust in 1956, and is now a rare habitat for water voles and a protected wildfowl breeding ground. -Source by UK Attractions