Wallace & Gromit's Guide to Stratford-upon-Avon
Famous world-over as the birthplace of William Shakespeare, Stratford-upon-Avon also has a few surprises up its sleeve and is the ideal spot for a doggy break.
t first glance you might not think that this medieval market town in the heart of England, steeped in Shakespeare, has much in common with a madcap inventor and his ingenious canine sidekick. Look more closely though and among the 800 years of Stratford’s history you’ll uncover deadly military machines that would turn Gromit’s head as well as one of the wackiest museums in the country. All this plus some cracking country walks and visits on the trail of romance – right up Wallace’s sleeve!
Cracking things to see and do
Crammed with legacies of the great playwright, Stratford is a wonderfully walkable place for you and your four-footed friend to explore. Saunter round the town taking in the houses associated with the great man or set out on the one-mile stroll to the romantic Anne Hathaway’s Cottage *, where Shakespeare wooed his wife, a must for love-lorn Wallaces. If Wallace could invent a museum, it would probably be MAD *. This eccentric collection features all manner of weird and witty contraptions, operated by gears, pulleys, chains and anything that moves! You can also relive Gromit’s memorable fight with the evil Victor in Curse of the Were Rabbit at battle-scarred Warwick Castle *.
Gromit-friendly places to stay
Set bang in the heart of town, the mutt-friendly Shakespeare Hotel is overflowing with Tudor character and serves a grand afternoon tea. You and your canine chum will also be warmly welcomed at the Melita Hotel, which has a pretty garden where you can both relax and riverside walks just a short scamper away. Or, for an out-of-town experience, head for characterful Billesley Manor, or Furzen Hill Farm Cottages set in the rolling Warwickshire countryside.
Time for tea
Wallace’s favourite tipple may be a glass of Bordeaux red, but you and your companion will find plenty more on offer in a host of pooch-friendly Warwickshire pubs. Try the Dirty Duck set on the River Avon or the much-photographed Garrick, whose curvy timbers date back to 1595. Out of town, head for The Fish at Wixford, where doggy chums are welcomed as much as their human counterparts. And if you’re in need of a little slice of cheese? Paxton and Whitfield Paxton and Whitfield is the ultimate experience for cheese lovers – smashing, eh Gromit?
* Sorry, no dogs.
(c) Aardman Animations/Wallace & Gromit Ltd 2013