The characterful honey-hued exterior of quaint cottages and elegant mansions is one of the reasons the Cotswolds is one of the most frequented areas for tourists and staycationers. An idyllic countryside retreat, many flock to historic chocolate box towns like Bourton-on-the Water, Winchcombe, Stow-on-the-Wold, Moreton-in-Marsh, Cirencester and Tetbury to name a few. All of these beautiful buildings house traditional pubs, churches, castles and holiday homes, and are steeped in history.
One of these histories which we will delve deeper into is the history of the Cotswold limestone. Cotswold stone is the reason why these buildings have such a charming golden appearance, beautifully reflecting the evening light and creating a summery bucolic glow all year round. Read on to find out more.
Though it cannot be traced as to when the Cotswold limestone was first discovered, it has been known that it was a popular building material in the Middle Ages. Limestone is a naturally abundant material, which meant that it was relatively cheap and easy to construct with.
The specific hue of the stone would pertain as to whereabouts it was quarried. For instance, in the northern region of the Cotswolds, the stone is known as being a richer and darker hue, like Greek honey, whereas further down towards Bath, the stone becomes creamier in appearance.
Notably, in the 13th century, the quarry at Taynton produced such a beautiful stone that it was transported to Oxford for the construction of Eton College, Windsor Castle and Blenheim Palace.
As the Cotswolds grew, so did the exquisite buildings, but also what started to appear was iconic low stone walls separating fields and private land. This was due to the various enclosure acts that were passed during the 18th and 19th century. The enclosure acts were acts of Parliament that authorised the enclosure of open fields and land, creating legal property rights for landowners. These low stone walls were created from the famous Cotswold stone and still possess plenty of rustic charm today.
Today, as Cotswold limestone is still naturally abundant, it is sculpted into beautiful modern abodes, humble cottages, quintessential english pubs, and even for interior pieces like fireplaces.
Here at Wrights of Campden, we harness this characterful limestone and can construct it into a variety of stylish pieces for the exterior and interior of your home. Whether you are searching for stone worktops, rustic fireplaces, ornate balustrades, or classical porticos, our pieces can be made bespoke for your wishes. To find out more, simply contact us today.