DID YOU KNOW? You won’t find a single thatched roof in Marlborough, which is strange given the town’s historic appearance and its thatch-heavy location on the edge of the Cotswolds. After the town was ravaged by fire three times in the 1600s, a law was passed that prohibited the covering of any building with thatch – similar to the law in London (excluding Shakespeare’s Globe of course) – meaning tile prevailed.
WHAT TO DO Marlborough boasts Britain’s second widest high street after Stockton-on-Tees, so you should definitely peruse the many independent shops and cafés along its length. Many of the buildings have a very storied past, some dating back to the 17th century.
BEST VANTAGE POINT The famous carved hillside horses of Wiltshire are a must-see when visiting the county. One of these, above the village of Preshute, just outside of Marlborough, was carved in 1804 and can be seen from various points in the town.
DIARY DATE In mid-July, an annual jazz festival come to town but this year’s was threatened by the council’s refusal to close roads around the various venues. The organisers have defiantly got on with their plans, and this year the weekend-long event will take place in the town hall. It won’t be quite the same vibe as previous year’s intimate venues but it saves you walking between the sets.
WHO YOU MIGHT SEE Marlborough College’s most notable ‘Old Malburian’ – and everyone’s favourite royal – the Duchess of Cambridge might be back in town for a good old alumni knees-up. However, you’re much more likely to see Jack Whitehall, who also attended the college.
WHERE TO EAT Mercer’s, The Harrow and the newly opened Rick Stein restaurant are just three of the recommended restaurants in the town. It’s pub lunch heaven too, as well as serving up some delightful afternoon teas.
WHAT TO DRINK If you can find some Moles on tap then give this a go; the nearby brewery has been producing this cask delight since the 1980s. Arkells Brewery is also located nearby and has its own pub in The Bear Hotel, which is worth a visit.
WHAT TO WEAR Something comfortable and good walking shoes, to take advantage of the surrounding scenic footpaths, but that is fancy enough should you bump into a royal along the way. We’ll have something for you, for sure.
HOW TO GET THERE There used to be two train stations in the town, but these days you have to make do with the closest stations in nearby Pewsey or Bedwyn. Swindon is the closest major town, on the A4, and it is easily reached by road.
You’ll find our Grade 2 listed store at 95 High Street, Marlborough, SN8 1HD, and our store locator here.