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-HOME AT FIRST's

ADVENTURE

THE COTSWOLDS

Cotswold Way signpost, Stanton. Photo © Home at First.

Stalking the Perfect English Village
(1st of a series)

           That ethereal community, the imaginary perfect English village what would its components be? There would surely be a village green. Of course, the greengrocer will display the freshest fruit and veg along the footpath in front of his tidy shop. All the call boxes will be painted with the traditional red lacquer and the pub must have windows of leaded glass and a mahogany interior. Shouldn't the stone church tower be the highest structure in town? And flowers! There must be climbing roses of all colors at all times of year, and lilacs and others to festoon the roof eaves and drip over the garden walls. But the architecture what should it be? Half-timbered Tudor? Honey-golden limestone? Thatched gingerbread? Elizabethan? Georgian? Regency? Edwardian? Medieval? 

Join us today as we stalk the perfect English village. Our first nominee is:

PHOTOS © HOME AT FIRST

 

          Stanton is hardly big enough to make the map. And, unlike its famous neighbors in the Cotswolds Hills (better-known Bourton-on-the-Hill and Chipping Camden come to mind), Stanton lacks a clue to its exceptional village quality in its rather plain name. However, in the words of a famous neighbor, what’s in a name?
          Nothing may be rarer than the virgin village. That Stanton remains pure qualifies it for nomination on our perfect English village list. It is perhaps Stanton’s very smallness and anonymity that have ensured its pristine condition. Larger villages, like nearby
Broadway, have succumbed to some of the pressures of busloads of day visitors

Stanton, Gloucestershire, glistens after a shower. Photo © Home At First.
FRESHLY WASHED BY A SPRING SHOWER,
COTTAGES OF COTSWOLD STONE DRIP WITH
COLORFUL BLOOMS ALONG THE GLISTENING
STREETS OF STANTON VILLAGE.

who scour its lovely high street and prowl

 

 

its back lanes ticking off entries from its high-profile

Snow like powdered sugar on gingerbread—Stanton in winter. Photo © Home At First.
SNOW LIKE POWDERED
SUGAR ON GINGERBREAD: STANTON IN WINTER.

catalogue of gems.
          Stanton’s diminutive size makes it easy to see in its entirety. It can be strolled and enjoyed fully in 45 minutes. And it has most of the architecture you would expect to find in larger places: cottage rows of exquisite honey-colored Cotswold limestone, some thatched, and a classic medieval village church, St. Michael's. There are flowers everywhere, of course, as if each day brings a new village floral competition.
          What Stanton doesn’t have is lots of shops and restaurants. Stanton remains residential, aloof, uninterested in capitalizing on the prying eyes of the visitor. Stanton is the perfect Cotswold village in aspic. You may visit, but you cannot stay. There will be no commercial souvenirs available. The thirsty and hungry can seek succor at the village's one lively pub and hikers' mecca,
The Mount Inn, at the northern entrance to Stanton

 

on a steep access to the long-distance

Cotswolds Way walking path. Here you can eat well and enjoy a pint of local Donnington real ale before or after doing an hour's loop on the Cotswolds Way. If, however, you choose to stroll only the 15 minutes it takes to see all of Stanton, the spirit of the dedicated stalker of perfect English villages will be satisfied like a gourmand’s appetite after a perfect meal.

Stanton lamppost. Photo © Home At First.
STANTON LAMPPOST

HOME AT FIRST

You can stalk Stanton and many other perfect English villages.
Read about
HOME AT FIRST travel programs to:

THE COTSWOLDS

DEVON & CORNWALL

SHROPSHIRE
& CHESHIRE

THE LAKE DISTRICT

NORTH YORKSHIRE &
THE DALES