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ENGLAND’S PRETTIEST VILLAGE

Castle Combe in the Cotswolds, evocative of a Hollywood stage set, is frequently cited as England’s most beautiful village. Nestled in a bowl-shaped valley, its roots lie in Roman Days, although most of its present buildings date to the 11th-15th centuries. And as in other villages in the Cotswold, its characteristic building material is Cotswold Stone, rich in golden hues. Prominent buildings of Castle Combe are the Church of St. Andrew’s dating to the 12th century, Market Square to the 14th century, and a manor house that belonged to Lord Fastoff, who inspired the character of Shakespeare’s “Falstaff.” The village is so diminutive, that its only street features signs that read, ‘The Street.’ When Castle Combe was first described in an English newspaper in the 1960s as “England’s most beautiful village,” 30,000 tourists descended on the village that has maintained a year-round population of approximately 300. This particular view is a classic, having been featured in numerous films, including ‘Doctor Doolittle’ (1967), ‘Poirot’ (1989), ‘Stardust’ (2007) and ‘The Wolfman’ (2009). But to shoot this view, it becomes necessary to walk into a driveway, prominently marked, "Private. No Trespassing!"

The present image is a scanned Kodachrome-25 slide dating back to the mid 70s, when I was a young post-doc at Oxford and frequently took visitors to the small village. Castle Combe is located about 16 km from the Georgian City of Bath, and it is close to Lacock Village that also vies for the title of England's prettiest...

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Additional Photos by Bulent Atalay (batalay) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6780 W: 471 N: 12171] (41261)
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