Visitors to Brightwell-cum-Sotwell
Given that it is easy to forget the tourist attractions on your own doorstep, this page could be equally useful to visitors and residents of Brightwell-cum-Sotwell. Here you can find suggestions for expeditions – long and short – as well as practical information on where to stay and how to get about.
Children may enjoy the Island Farm Donkey sanctuary www.donkeyrescue.co.uk/, or may prefer to fly a kite or watch model aeroplane acrobatics at the top of Wittenham Clumps www.earthtrust.org.uk/. In spring, they also have lambing weekends.
You could buy eggs and pesticide-free potatoes at Highlands Farm Shop, run by Rosemary and David Greasby (Tel. 01491836943), and the makings of a picnic from the Village Stores, behind the Village Hall. You could take lunch at the Red Lion, www.redlionbrightwell.co.uk, followed by a walk down Mackney Lane to the recreation ground. Here there are swings and a slide, and the possibility of a football or cricket match to watch.
There is also a smaller playpark at King’s Orchard, with a secure fenced area for younger children
Nearby Beale Park www.bealepark.co.uk/, open seven days a week from March 1st to October 31st, has exotic wildlife in a Thameside setting.
Wallingford, founded by King Alfred in the early 10th century, was once much larger than Oxford and had an important strategic position on the River Thames. You can still see its earthwork defences and the remains of the town walls that were built to keep the Vikings out.
The town’s official website www.wallingford.co.uk details three historic walks: along the town walls, through the castle grounds and by the river. There is a Tourist Information Centre in the Market Place, and if you visit on a Friday, you will also find a street market there. A traditional W.I. Country Market is also held on Fridays in the Regal Centre and there is a farmer’s market on the third Tuesday and fifth Saturday in the month.
Wallingford – and members of the town's Sinodun Players – feature frequently in the TV Midsomer Murders series. If you want to explore some of the locations featured on screen, you can follow trails on the website http://www.visitmidsomer.com/
The Village Stores – run by a dedicated team of volunteers – stocks local history booklets and cards, as well as a variety of local produce.
For more on what to do in wider South Oxfordshire, visit http://www.southernoxfordshire.com/