Welcome to The Cotswolds!

I love the English Cotswolds and think everyone should visit this beautiful place at least once in their lifetime. Having lived all over the world and traveled as much as possible, I still think that this little part of England is one of the world's greatest treasures. This site is dedicated to helping spread the word and encourage sustainable travel to the Cotswolds.

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Sunday, 24 October 2010

The Devil in The Cotswolds

The Devil’s Chimney
Legend holds that the Devil's Chimney in The Cotswolds is the chimney of the Devil's dwelling deep beneath the ground. Named for its curious shape, that of a crooked and twisting stone chimney rising from the top of Leckhampton Hill, it is a local landmark.  Supposedly the Devil, provoked by the many Christian churches of the area, would sit atop Leckhampton Hill and hurl stones at Sunday churchgoers. However the stones were turned back on him, driving him beneath the ground and trapping him there so he could not further harass the villagers. Now he uses the mass of stones as his chimney to let free the smokes of hell.

Visitors to the Devil's Chimney would leave a coin on top of the rock as payment to the Devil in exchange for his staying in his underground home and not leaving to create mischief and spread evil in the local area.

Location: Leckhampton Hill and Charlton Kings Common lie to the south and south east ofCheltenham . Parking is available at Daisybank Road off Leckhampton Road and at  Hartley Lane near the hill top.

The 99 Yews of Painswick
The beautiful churchyard of St Mary’s in Painswick contains not only remarkable tombs, reflecting the woollen trade but also a famous group of neatly trimmed yew trees. Not only do the yews add a picturesque beauty to the scene but they are also participants in an interesting legend. The trees planted in 1792, despite many efforts to grow an extra tree, are never allowed to achieve one hundred in number. It is said that the devil will not permit the number to increase, pulling out the hundredth tree.

Perhaps this is fortuitous however, for according to the local rhyme:

‘Painswick maidens shall be true
Till there grows the hundredth yew’

Location: St. Mary's is right in the centre of Painswick on the A46/Cheltenham Road.

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