Ever thought of…Trowbridge?

Date Posted: 10/01/2018

We take a look at what there is to do for groups in Trowbridge, Wiltshire, from inspiring places to shop, to suitable places for groups to stay. 

Situated in the heart of west Wiltshire, Trowbridge is a vibrant town with ancient roots. Groups can wander through streets where Romans, Saxons and Normans have all left their mark.

In the 13th century it was the headquarters of a Magna Carta Baron; one of the 25 who forced King John to sign the ‘great charter’ at Runnymede in 1215 – a copy of which is on display at Salisbury Cathedral.

The town’s historic Market Charter also dates back to the 1200s and today it still plays host to a well-attended weekly street market every Wednesday.

Trowbridge also has a rich textile heritage with a long history of woollen cloth production beginning in Anglo-Saxon times and expanded in the 14th century. This left an architectural legacy, ranging from the fine 18th-century homes of wealthy clothiers, to the rare Handle House, which was used to dry teasels, and former mill buildings. 

Hot spots

Today, Trowbridge has a number of independent retailers, national chains and markets, as well as a vibrant arts and cultural scene. Trowbridge Town Hall Arts acts as a hub for the development of artistic activity providing opportunities for all in the community to be inspired by arts, culture and heritage. 

At St Stephen’s Place you will find an Odeon cinema complex, a wide range of restaurants and a hotel. Trowbridge Museum highlights the town’s fascinating heritage as the centre of woollen cloth production in the west.

The Community Sensory Garden next to Trowbridge Park at the back of the Town Hall offers ‘peace and tranquillity’ close to the town centre, and is somewhere to be considered by groups seeking a green spot to observe and enjoy. 

Pictured: War memorial - (Photo credit: VisitEngland/Visit Wiltshire/Chris Lock)

Annual events and entertainment

The annual sporting event, the Active Festival, in July offers free activities for all ages. Trowbridge also stages its own Heritage Festival in September while Trowbridge Arts Festival and Carnival both take place in October. The town also hosts a Victorian Christmas event with an exhibition, storytelling and gifts in December.

Groups seeking even more by way of retail can visit the town’s vibrant shopping centre called The Shires which offers an array of independent outlets, selling all kinds of products. Further afield Neston Farm Shop and Kitchen is worth a visit, too. 

Nearby attractions

With the Kennet & Avon Canal situated just to the north of the town, groups might like to visit the Barbara McLellan narrow boat which runs public trips on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays. 

In nearby Bradford on Avon you’ll find Towpath Trail Bike and Canoe Hire featuring bikes and Canadian canoes, great for visitors seeking an activity.

Just over a mile out of the town centre is Southwick Country Park, home to the Hope Nature Centre with alpacas, donkeys, rabbits, chickens and other animals. And to the north-east of Trowbridge is the scenic village of Hilperton with its own marina and tranquil walks along the canal towpath.

Pictured: Town centre -  (Photo credit: VisitEngland/Visit Wiltshire/Chris Lock)

Places to stay

The Polebarn is a family owned and run boutique style townhouse hotel in the centre of Trowbridge, and group bookings are available. It is one of only a handful of Bath stone buildings in Trowbridge and originally lived in by a local mill owner. 

Meanwhile, heading towards the ancient town of Bradford on Avon, you’ll find Widbrook Grange which is a Georgian country house hotel, peacefully located in 11 acres of grounds. 

And one minute down the road you’ll fine Widbrook Barns, a site which features seven separate converted barns, a gypsy caravan and shepherd’s hut offering ‘enchantment, adventure, mystery and fantasy’ – great for those groups seeking alternative-style accommodation

Trowbridge has plenty of other accommodation options suiting all budgets.

Well connected

Trowbridge is south of the M4, three miles south east of Bradford on Avon and has good rail links from Bristol and Southampton. 

For further information please see www.visitwiltshire.co.uk/trowbridge

Lead image: VisitEngland/Visit Wiltshire/Chris Lock

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