An Early Autumn Staycation in Shropshire: Where We Stayed and What we did

For various reasons over the last few years my beloved and I haven’t been able to take holidays together and all our adventures have been squeezed into day trips; which although wonderful, were often punitive in terms of hours spent in travel and the concomitant exhaustion that followed.

Back then we regularly day tripped to various places in Shropshire (Bridgnorth, Ludlow and Much Wenlock) and we always said that when we could travel, we would make it a priority to really explore this beautiful county; particularly the exquisite towns and countryside on the borders with Wales.

‘The Green Glory’ Showman’s Wagon

We found an absolutely stunning place to stay on the Walcot Estate in North Lydbury through the Canopy and Stars website (if you love the outdoors and nature I highly recommend checking them out). Choosing a 1930s showman’s wagon named The Green Glory: we found ourselves in exquisite accommodation, located in an arboretum, on a hillside with stunning views of the Long Mynd – I mean, what could be better! The Green Glory completely stole my heart and I think it is one of the prettiest places I’ve ever stayed. The interior was simple, beautiful and relaxing. Vintage wool blankets and velvet cushions in muted pink, green and yellow soften built in seating in front of a gorgeous period fireplace complete with a wood burning stove; a cosy bedroom with surprisingly ample storage and a basic but practical and aesthetically pleasing kitchen. Lighting came courtesy of candles and battery operated fairy lights and in terms of *ahem* facilities; water, shower and a toilet (one flushing and one compost) were less than a minutes walk away. If I sound smitten with it, it’s because I am and am already eyeing our outdoor garden studio with a view to giving it a makeover in homage to the wagon – minus the composting loo, though!

From ‘The Green Glory o’er the Long Mynd

As locations go it was amazing. There were leisurely mornings sitting outside enjoying breakfast while soaking up the amazing view and evenings filled with ambles through the arboretum enjoying the trees or curling up with a book in front of the wagon’s wood burning stove. It was so restful and peaceful! On days when we wanted to get out and about we were within driving distance of the picturesque towns of Bishop’s Castle, Clun, and Ludlow – the latter being the furthest away (35 mins), the former towns only about ten minutes in opposite directions.

Our days were a mix of walking and sightseeing. We visited Mitchell’s Fold – a bronze age stone circle set in a natural amphitheatre of hills; the iron age hill fort Bury Ditches, which is astounding in terms of its preservation – we were dwarfed by the banks and it is so impressive considering they were dug by hand with rudimentary tools. We also took in a trio of castles; Montgomery, Clun and Hopton. Montgomery is the largest by far and arguably a true castle compared to the other two, where it has speculated that Clun Castle was a hunting lodge and Hopton Castle a pleasaunce. That being said, all have experienced turbulence or witnessed siege and have rich and interesting histories.

Clun Castle

The views from both Montgomery and Clun Castle are of note for very different reasons. Montgomery Castle takes in a vast expanse of the border country; its location having been politically and strategically important. Clun however, is more human in scale; overlooking the town like a protective mother hen keeping a watchful eye on her chicks. On the day we visited Clun Castle we witnessed the charming scene of a bowling match underway on the green below that brought to mind some of the lovely scenes captured by Stanley Spencer in his beloved Cookham.


We enjoyed our day trip to Ludlow, despite doing little other than admire the architecture, drift around the farmer’s market and shops, a bite of lunch followed by a sojourn in the gorgeous Rose and Crown Inn that dates back to the 13th century. It was strange however, to be in such a busy town after the solitude and quiet of the Walcot Estate and nearby towns. It took me a while to adjust, not least as I have -post the lifting of restrictions- not ventured far and am still doggedly wearing a face mask. That being said, we found some quiet spots and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.

There were so many walks and places we had planned to visit this time that we just didn’t manage to do and we were both agreed on our return home that this had probably been one of most enjoyable breaks and are very keen to repeat it next year and do some more exploring. If anyone has any recommendations of places to see etc, I would love to hear them so I can add them to our next trip.

With love

Stella x

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