Highworth is an ancient hill top market town situated on the edge of the Cotswolds only four miles from the River Thames and close to Swindon and its many facilities. John Betjeman said, l have never seen Highworth given due praise in guide books for what is one of the most charming and unassuming country towns in the West of England." The town centre is a remarkable conservation area containing 84 listed buildings plus a Grade l listed church.
There are numerous stories and events and people that contribute to Highworth's unique and special character. They include being a cavalier stronghold during the civil war, having a postmistress with a pivotal role in the British Resistance movement during World War II, running the official ABBA fan club from a house in Sheep Street, the mystery of the secret tunnels under the market place and not forgetting the many sightings of the ghostly monk!
The medieval parish church of St Michaels and All Angels is situated in the centre of the town. Within it is the Warneford Chapel. Rex Warneford VC is famous for shooting down a zeppelin from his aeroplane in the First World War. It also displays the cannon ball fired at it by the Parliamentarians during the Civil War.
Highworth is a town with many facilities including a golf course, a recreation centre with an indoor swimming pool with diving facilities, modem gym and squash courts. In addition there are plenty of eating places to meet all tastes, plus a prize winning deli, a traditional English butcher famous for their 'bloody lovely' sausages and an excellent gift shop. One of the highlights of the week is our outdoor Saturday Market.
Highworth is perfectly placed to explore Wiltshire, Oxfordshire and Gloucestershire. It has it’s very own Visitor’s Centre with information on things to do in Highworth and the surrounding area. It also houses the Highworth Museum in the unusual setting of a Bank’s strong room. This features a permanent display on the History of Highworth as well as temporary exhibitions. You can join in one of the guided town tours to find out even more about this historical town including Highworth’s unusual link to ABBA. The Visitor’ Centre is also an Arts and Craft centre showcasing handmade pieces by local Artists and Makers. There is a wide range of items available from Art, Pottery, Jewellery to Woodwork, Candles and Textiles.
Pentyland’s Country Park is in West Highworth, a must for nature enthusiasts. If you would like to discover wildlife both native and visiting, take a guided “Wildlife walk with a camera”. There are many walking trails in the area were you can experience the tranquil rural scenery stretching into neighbouring counties.
During the year a wide range of events take place in the town, including the highly popular May Day Charter Market, annual Music Festival, and Highworth Festival. The town has 6 free car parks as well as street parking.
Nearby are many interesting places including the National Trust village of Coleshill with a working flour mill and the training ground for the Second World War Resistance Movement (Churchill's Secret Army). In Sevenhampton churchyard is the grave of the author Ian Fleming of James Bond fame.
The town is close to Lechlade-on-Thames which is the last navigable section of the River Thames and the Thames Path. RAF Fairford is only a few miles away, where the world famous international Air tattoo is held each July. The town is 7 miles from Swindon and close to junction 15 of the M4. Swindon boasts a famous railway village with the Steam Museum and adjacent to the highly popular Outlet Village, which attracts over 4 million visitors a year. A wide range of accommodation is available in the area.
Parking & Transport
- Car Parks
- Coach Parking
- Free car park
- Parking for disabled visitors
Towns & Villages
- Information Centre
- Public toilets
- Toilets for disabled visitors
- Village shop
Map & Directions
From M4 junction 15, 4 miles north on the A419, then 3 miles on A361 north. From M5 leave at junction 11A.Ad-171419 Cirencester/$windon then 84019 from Blunsdon to Highworth
Public Transport Directions
Frequent bus service from Swindon bus station (No.7), every 12 minutes during the day. Swindon railway station is a short walk from the bus station. There is a frequent rail service from London. Highworth is situated on the A361, just 8 miles from the M4 motorway