Tuesday 25 May 2021

The Slaughters

Continuing with our exploration of the Cotswolds, we decided to visit Lower and Upper Slaughter, two of the prettiest villages I have ever come across. The name comes from the old English 'slohtre' , which has nothing to do with killing things and means 'muddy place'. The link is the tiny river Eyre, tributary to the nearby river Windrush. Both villages have remained utterly unchanged for more than a century with no building work taking place at all since 1906.

We started with Lower Slaughter, the prettiest of the two, due to the river that runs through the middle of it. The river is very shallow, just like in Bourton-on-the-Water

We parked by the rive near this hotel

and then proceeded to have a look at St Mary's church.


Then it was time to explore the rest of the village

The river Eye flows between neatly-mown grassy banks and is crossed several times by quaint old bridges.

It's a very small village, very picturesque

the houses built with the local Cotswold stone.

The village green

Very quiet too - we only saw one local resident, but a few visitors like ourselves: one of the houses had a sign saying 'no photographs, please', which I think, says it all

We turned right here

because we wanted to have a look at the mill, the only attraction in the village.

The restored 19th century flour mill was last used commercially in 1958. Its imposing chimney is made of red brick, in sharp contrast to the other buildings in the village.

I loved the giant working waterwheel.

Today, the Mill is a museum, shop and ice-cream parlour

Lots of goodies for the garden being sold in the yard, but unfortunately, it was closed so we could not go in and have a look

We left the mill behind us and continued exploring

this must be the smallest window in the village.

We managed to find a path that leads to the countryside and we took it

part of it is a river walk

an island

and another one

a kissing gate led to a field

we came across quite a few walkers, so it's a popular walk. We assumed that this walk leads to Upper Slaughter.

Another kissing gate, and then, another field full of sheep and their little ones, all fresh from the market

lots of sheep and lambs under this tree

Ah! they are so sweet

I can't resist - here's another one

But, the weather was changing, and the threat of another shower was imminent, so we retraced our steps. A different view of the Mill

past the Mill again,

and we made our way to the car, walking along the opposite side of the river

We managed to get to the car just as it started raining, so we drove to Upper Slaughter. Fortunately, by the time we got there, the rain had eased and the sun was shining again

Upper Slaughter is less visited, but still very pretty. The cottages around the square were reconstructed by the famour architect Edward Lutyens in 1906. 

One of the first things we came across was the Lords of the Manor hotel and restaurant - closed of course, because of lockdown, but we went in to have a look, mainly because 

we were drawn by the immaculate lawns in front of the building

We walked downhill and came to the river

so shallow

pretty cottages abound

This tiny Methodist chapel dating from 1865 is now used as a pottery - alas, closed

It's lovely to walk around here, and we did not see a single soul

the ford

and the river

The church of St Peter's, a historic Normal church, was our last stop.

It then started raining again, so we headed towards the car and home.

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