Pictures of Stockbridge
Stockbridge is a lovely small town at the heart of the Test Valley.
Permission to hold a weekly market here was granted as far back as the reign of Richard I, nearby there lies an ancient Iron-Age Hill-fort and Danebury Ring, so we know the town's history began somewhere in the mists of time.
The town has always been known for its fine fishing, the River Test offers some of the best and most expensive fishing in England. Fishermen have gathered at the town's distinctive Georgian, Grosvenor Hotel for decades and today the hotel is still the home to the famous Houghton Fishing Club. The hotel occupies a premier position in Stockbridge High Street, it is easily identifiable by its enormous overhanging entrance porch with a room above. Opposite is the 19th century town hall.
Another delightful central building is The White Hart Inn, a former coaching inn whose building dates back to the 12th century.
The High Street is wide, quite irregular, with lots of interesting properties from all periods, towards the top the street rises sharply giving way to lovely views of distant hills covered with trees. The buildings lining this street offer a mixture of houses and delightful shops making it pleasant for visitors and towns-people alike.
At the eastern end of the town lies the old 12th century church - only the chancel still stands of old St. Peter's, with an oak doorway of 1354, and some wall paintings of the 16th century. The church also displays a Royal Coat of Arms from 1726. In its timeless setting amidst a churchyard strewn with flowers, Old Saint Peters adds to the vintage charm of Stockbridge.
The new St.Peter's Church is built in the Victorian-Gothic style, this occupies a commanding position in the High Street. The town's other church is the Roman Catholic church dedicated to St. Thomas Moore, visitors can find this modern, recently built church located behind Rosalind Hill House on the main street.
Nearby there is some beautiful countryside, much of which belongs to the National Trust. Stockbridge marsh is a marvellous place for watching birds and other species of wildlife. Countryside strolls are a feature of this region, as within the town itself where you can enjoy feeding ducks in the duck pond or in the streams which run just below the surface of the footpaths. There is also a lot of pleasure to be gained from the life of the river-life of the Test, along its banks you can always see stately white swans, and often spot coot, moorhens, and heron.
For visitors who wish to stay to discover the charm and tranquillity of the area, there is much to keep you occupied - Horse Riding on the Downs, Clay Pigeon Shooting, and Theatre are all on offer as well as fishing and boating. The range of accommodation is excellent, it includes luxury hotels, handsome guest houses, friendly bed and breakfast's, and caravan parks.
Stockbridge is also a fine place to visit for a day, it is within easy reach of the Cathedral City of Salisbury, historic Romsey and the delights of the ponies in the New Forest National Park.
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