St Mary's Lane

Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire

Overview

This tall, well-made and well-lit house once belonged to a stocking weaver, whose trade made Tewkesbury famous in the 18th century. Set in an quiet lane in an historic town, the Abbey is just a short walk away, as is the River Avon.

  • CotCot
  • Open SpaceOpen Space
  • Bath with ShowerBath with Shower
  • Outside Dining FurnitureOutside Dining Furniture

Beds 1 Twin, 1 Double

Sleeps
4
3 nights
£321 equivalent to £26.75 per person, per night

Prosperity generated through stockings

This modest house, tucked down a historic side street in lovely Tewkesbury, is a evidence of the town's 18th century prosperity. It is a rare survival of a house designed for framework knitters or stocking makers, recognisable by its long, first floor window to light the knitting frame (and now the sitting-room). Weaving was an organised but domestic trade – each stocking maker had his own knitting frame, kept in his home, while his wife and children carded and span the yarn. Stocking making provided the main employment in the town through the 18th century, until the cotton thread provided by Richard Arkwright’s factory experiment at Cromford gave the Nottingham stocking knitters the edge over those using Cotswold wool.

The roof was once falling in but now it's light and cheerful

This is one of several tall and well-made houses that suggest the living was a decent one. Above and below the weaver’s workroom were rooms for the family and there is a small yard at the back. When we took on the row in 1969, their roofs were falling in. We repaired the row and gave one to the local preservation society to further its cause. The cottage is light and cheerful, its steep, winding corner stair still in place and leading up to a fine view across Tewkesbury’s marvellous roofscape to the abbey. The town lies in a vale with the Cotswolds on one side and the Malvern Hills on the other. Both are in easy reach, as is Cheltenham. Tewkesbury itself has much to offer in that quiet, grounded way of our historic towns: an ancient battle site; the watery activity of the Avon and Evensong, if you wish, in the beautiful abbey.

See all our Landmarks at Tewkesbury

‘We found ourselves so enchanted with Tewkesbury itself that we only ventured out on two days of the whole week.’

‘Evensong every night.’

From the logbook

Floor Plan

Map & local info

St Mary’s Lane is in a quiet side street in the heart of the historic town of Tewkesbury close to Tewkesbury Abbey

In Tewkesbury itself you can follow the The Battle Trail or visit the museum to learn more about the decisive battle of The Wars of the Roses in 1471. You can also take trip along the river with one of the many Tewkesbury Boat Trips

Cheltenham - a 20 minute car journey away - is home to four internationally acclaimed festivals, the most famous being Cheltenham Jazz Festival each May. The ScienceMusic and Literature festivals are also held annually. Between these four festivals, over 215,000 tickets are sold each year, making Cheltenham a cultural hub from May until October.  

Also in Cheltenham are The Wilson art gallery and the Holst Birthplace Museum. You can gain a 50% discount on exhibitions at The Wilson and free entry to the Holst Birthplace Museum with a National Art Pass, which enables its members to enjoy free entry to over 240 museums, galleries and historic houses throughout the UK as well as 50% off entry to major exhibitions. The pass is presented by one of Landmark's partners, the Art Fund, the national fundraising charity for art, which has been supporting museums and galleries for over 110 years by helping them to buy and display great works of art for everyone to enjoy. Income raised through the National Art Pass goes straight back into their charitable programme. You can find out more about the National Art Pass on the Art Fund's website here.

Take a look at our Pinterest map for more ideas of things to see and do during your stay at St Mary's Lane.

Please Note: The Landmark Trust does not take any responsibility and makes no warranties, representations or undertakings about the content of any website accessed by hypertext link. Links should not be taken as an endorsement of any kind. The Landmark Trust has no control over the availability of the linked pages.

See all our Landmarks at Tewkesbury

St Mary's Lane
Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire
Clear directions
FAQs

    What you need to know about this building

  • Does the property allow dogs?

    No.
  • How is the property accessed?

    Directly from the main road.
  • What is the nearest railway station and how far away is it?

    Ashchurch – 2 miles.
  • Is there car parking specifically for Landmark guests?

    No – there is a pay and display car park in St Mary’s Lane.
  • What type of heating does the property have?

    There is gas central heating.
  • What are the kitchen facilities?

    The kitchen is fully equipped with all plates, cutlery, fridge etc.
    There is also an electric cooker.

  • What are the bathroom facilities?

    There is one bathroom with a bath and also an additional wc.
  • Does this Landmark have steep, narrow or spiral stairs?

    The stairs are steep, narrow and twisting.
  • Is there a garden or outside space?

    There is a small outside yard area.

    Booking and Payment

  • What happens if I can’t get to the Landmark due to bad weather?

    If the weather is bad, please contact our booking office who will be able to tell you whether the Landmark is accessible. If the housekeeper can safely get to the building to prepare it then we consider that it is open and available for guests. However if we cannot undertake a changeover then we will do our utmost to transfer your stay to another Landmark, depending on what we have available. It may not be of a similar size or in the same part of the country as your original booking. If the building is accessible but the customer cannot travel due to poor weather in his/her local area then please be aware that Landmark will not provide a refund. However the customer may be able to claim on his/her own travel insurance. We recommend that all guests take out travel insurance when they first secure a booking.
  • How can I pay?

    We accept Maestro (if issued in the UK), Visa, MasterCard, direct transfer and sterling cheques drawn on a UK bank. Cheques should be made payable to the Landmark Trust except for Lundy stays and boat/helicopter tickets which should be payable to The Lundy Company Ltd. All payments must be in sterling.
  • How do I create an account?

    If you have not used the Landmark online booking facility before and you wish to register in advance, you can set up an on-line account by following the instructions below:

    Go to the Landmark home page and click on Gift shop (located at the top of the home page in red).

    Select a gift (e.g. Landmark Handbook or Anniversary Mug) and complete the ‘Amount required’ box. There is no need to complete the purchase but this step is necessary in order to bring up the registration page.

    Click ‘Next Step’ at the bottom of the page.

    This will bring you to the ‘Your details’ page.

    Please complete all the fields (name, address, contact details and create an account). Click on the green ‘Create Account’ button once you have finished.

    At the top of the page headed ‘Your details’ there will be a grey box saying ‘Signed in’ and underneath this it will say ‘you are currently signed in as ….

    Here you will also have the option to ‘Sign out’. Please do so and that is your registration completed.

    Please return to the Landmark home page.

    To check your registration or update your account details at any time please ‘Sign in’ using the icon in the top right-hand corner of the home page.

    If you experience any problems in registering or setting up your on-line account please contact webmaster@landmarktrust.org.uk.
  • How do I pick up the key?

    There are various arrangements for picking up keys. To arrange to get into the Landmark, please contact the housekeeper at least two days before your stay
  • Can I pay a deposit?

    If your stay starts more than three months from the date you make the booking, you are required to pay a deposit of one third of the cost of your stay (or £100 per booking, if greater) at the time of booking. Camping on Lundy must be paid for in full at the time of booking.
  • How can I cancel or change my booking?

    If you wish to cancel or change your booking, please contact our Booking Office on 01628 825925
  • Do you accept payment in other currencies?

    At the moment we only accept payment in sterling.
  • What if I arrive late?

    Please let the housekeeper know if you are going to arrive late and s/he will leave a key for you in a suitable place.
  • How far in advance do I need to book?

    It depends. Some of our most popular Landmarks are booked up a long time in advance, but many can be booked at short notice. We will always have Landmarks free for the coming weekend so it’s always worth checking our availability list.
  • Do you have to be a member to book a Landmark?

    No, Landmarks are available to be booked for anyone.
  • Do I need a Handbook to be able to book?

    No, all the information you need can be found on our website, although we’d like you to buy one anyway as it will be a pleasure to own!

    Staying at a Landmark

  • Are Landmarks accessible for people with disabilities or limited mobility?

    Some of our Landmarks are suitable for people with disabilities or limited mobility. However, many Landmarks have steep or narrow staircases, uneven floors and thresholds, changes of level, low ceilings or beams, as well as indistinct colours on steps and in corridors. We recommend that you call Booking Enquiries on 01628 825925 if you would like to find out the suitability of a particular Landmark for anyone with a specific disability.
  • Are Landmarks only available as self-catering accommodation?

    Yes, Landmarks are only available as self-catering accommodation. We do not offer bed and breakfast.
  • Do you provide catering?

    Landmark does not provide catering, but we can recommend Greycoat Lumleys who can arrange for expert and well-trained staff to cater for one evening or for your entire holiday. Their cooks and chefs are able to work with you to meet your specific requirements
  • Do you allow dogs?

    You may bring up to two dogs to properties where dogs are allowed (please see specific property details for exemptions however dogs are not permitted on Lundy except assistance dogs). They must be kept off the furniture and under proper control.
  • Can I bring a pet?

    Apart from two dogs (see above) no other pets are permitted.
  • What time can I arrive and what time do I have to depart from the Landmark?

    Arrival is from 4pm and departure is by 10am.
  • Am I insured if I break something?

    We do not carry insurance for breakages. However we appreciate that accidents do sometimes happen. If you have a breakage during your stay, please let the housekeeper know and if appropriate we reserve the right to invoice you accordingly.
  • Are Landmarks suitable for children?

    Yes, most of our Landmarks are perfect for children, with gardens to play in and secret places to discover. Our furniture is surprisingly robust and we positively encourage families to stay. However, some of our buildings may not be suitable for small children; for example, some of them have steep or uneven spiral staircases. We recommend that you call the Booking Enquiries team if you would like to find out the suitability of any of our Landmarks for young children.
  • Can I get married in a Landmark?

    Unfortunately, most of our Landmarks are not licensed for weddings. However, you may get married on Lundy.
  • Can I hold a big party in a Landmark?

    All our larger Landmarks are perfect for gatherings of family or friends. You may invite an additional two guests to visit you during your stay, however they must not stay overnight. This is very important because our fire regulations specifically note the maximum number of people in any one building. In addition our properties are prepared, furnished and equipped for the number of people specified and greater numbers cause damage and excessive wear and tear to vulnerable buildings. Should this condition be ignored we shall make a retrospective charge per person per day (whether or not they stay overnight) for each guest over the permitted limit, the charge being pro-rated on the total cost of your booking.
  • Are there televisions in the buildings?

    We deliberately do not provide televisions and find that most people appreciate this.
  • Why are your access tracks sometimes difficult?

    One of the challenges of restoring unloved buildings is gaining access to them. We frequently have to negotiate rights with our neighbours and share tracks with them. In many cases tracks do not belong to us and we have no right to maintain them. Wherever possible we work with our neighbours to provide you with a good quality surface, but where this is a problem then you will be warned at the time of booking.
  • Will there be sockets for my electrical appliances?

    Yes, we have standard electricity sockets for UK appliances. If you are coming from outside the UK, you will need to bring your own adaptor plug(s). If you are visiting one of our European properties we have standard European electricity sockets. If you are visting from the UK, you will need to bring your own adapter plug (s).

    Facilities

  • Are the kitchens and bathrooms restored to a modern standard?

    Sometimes our kitchens and bathrooms have to be imaginatively fitted into the available space in buildings where before there were none, but they are all planned and equipped to a high and modern standard.
  • Is linen provided?

    Yes, Landmarks are fully equipped with sheets and towels. All the beds are fully made up for your arrival.
  • Are the kitchens fully equipped?

    Yes, our kitchens are well equipped with cookers and fridges. There are freezers and dishwashers (in larger buildings) and, where space allows, microwaves as well as a wide and standard range of utensils. A full equipment list is available at time of booking.
  • Do you provide logs for the open fire/stove?

    Logs are provided at many of our Landmarks for an additional cost.
  • Will there be a mobile signal in the Landmark I book?

    Mobile coverage varies. Some Landmarks have an excellent signal, but others have none at all. If you are concerned, you can check with the housekeeper before your arrival.
  • Is there Wi-Fi in your buildings?

    No. At the moment, we have decided not to implement Wi-Fi in our buildings following a consultation with our customers. Many said that they would find it useful, but many also felt that it would somehow damage the experience of staying in a Landmark. As the responses were so split, and as we have so many other initiatives requiring funding, we have decided to put this on hold for the time being.
  • What should I bring with me? Are there toilet rolls, soap, shampoo, milk, teabags, coffee, hairdryer?

    A welcome tray with tea and sugar awaits your arrival and you will find a pint of milk in the fridge. We also provide toilet rolls and a bar of soap per basin, but no other toiletries. We do not provide hairdryers.
History

Industrial housing

These stocking knitter’s cottages date from the 18th century, an era when industrial housing still retained a measure a measure of dignity. As such, they are relatively rare survivals. Tewkesbury had been known for its stockings since the 17th century: in 1724, Daniel Defoe described the town as ‘famous for a great manufacture of stockings.’ Stocking knitting was one of the earliest manufacturing processes to be mechanised – as early as 1589, Rev. William Lee had patented a knitting frame (traditionally, inspiration struck through frustration at his sweetheart’s preoccupation with her hand knitting).

Tewkesbury developed as an early centre of expertise for cotton stockings (cheaper than silk) because spinners in the west country were used to working with the local short staple wool, which enabled them to twist two threads of cotton together to produce a regular cotton yarn suitable for use on the knitting frame. Framework knitting became the chief occupation for inhabitants of Tewkesbury, and the domestic pieceworkers would have spent their days at the long first floor windows where their knitting frames were installed.

As a direct result of Richard Arkwright’s success in factory cotton spinning, by the 1780s the Nottingham knitting industry, which had previously concentrated on silk, had transferred its focus to cotton, using machine-spun thread superior in quality to that produced by the west country spinners. The inevitable outcome was depression for the more domestically scaled Tewkesbury knitters, further too from the source of mechanically spun thread. The Tewkesbury industry gradually declined through the 19th century, workers creatively turning their skills instead to outer footwear, as the town became known instead for shoe and boot manufacture.

Experience the house

For up to 4 people

This tall, well-made and well-lit house once belonged to a stocking weaver, whose trade made Tewkesbury famous in the 18th century. Set in an historic lane in an historic town, the Abbey is just a short walk away, as is the River Avon.

Book a stay
Restoration

Assisting a local preservation group

Landmark became involved in St Mary’s Lane in 1970, when Nos. 28 and 30 had been acquired in a parlous state by Gem Town Ltd., a preservation group that was an offshoot of Tewkesbury Civic Society and named after this area of the town. The company had drawn up plans for St Mary’s Lane but found themselves unable to raise the funds to carry them out.

Landmark stepped in and, retaining Gem Town’s architect H G Raggett, paid for the restoration of both cottages, in return for the freehold on No. 30. (Gem Town Ltd kept the freehold of No. 28, which they have since sold).

No.28 was the most dilapidated, having suffered from the removal of its neighbour at the end of the row. Its roof had fallen in and its side gable wall had to be rebuilt. Both cottages were retiled with original and second hand tiles, new dormers were installed and first and second floor floorboards replaced. The yards were tiled with old blue Staffordshire bricks, whose strange size (12" x 6½") made them impossible to lay herringbone fashion. The first Landmarkers stayed at No. 30 in 1972.

In 1982, Landmark acquired No. 32, which had also been allowed to decline, and Mr Raggett again drew up plans for its restoration. Equivalent repairs were required to this cottage too, including the rebuilding of its dormer window. During the building work, a blocked window was discovered in the side wall and re-opened to reveal the magnificent view of the Abbey tower. Nos. 30 and 32 were both let for holidays by Landmark until 2006, when No. 32 was instead made available for residential letting to the local community, while remaining in Landmark’s care.

Experience the house

For up to 4 people

This tall, well-made and well-lit house once belonged to a stocking weaver, whose trade made Tewkesbury famous in the 18th century. Set in an historic lane in an historic town, the Abbey is just a short walk away, as is the River Avon.

Book a stay
Availability & booking

Select a changeover day to start your booking...

What's a changeover day? and Why can't I select other dates?Explain MoreQuestion

A changeover day is a particular day of the week when holidays start and end at our properties. These tend to be on a Friday or a Monday but can sometimes vary. All stays run from one changeover day until another changeover day.