A trip to sunny Shropshire

Fabulous Cardingmill ValleyWe recently had the opportunity to stay at Arden House in Church Stretton which gave us a great opportunity to renew our acquaintance with Shropshire. We travelled in mid-August and were blessed with wonderful weather, sun all the way! We travelled down early on the Monday morning and unusually had no problems on the M6. Once we came off the motorway we stopped off at a farm tearoom, Hungersheath, en route to Market Drayton. We rather wished we had waited however as although the setting was lovely the food was disappointing – tepid filled oatcakes and it was one of those places that asked what you thought of the meal then seemed pretty disinterested when you reported a problem!  We had a nice walk around Market Drayton and I bought a vintage umbrella at an antique/ junk shop there – well I only have four already! We moved onto Shrewsbury and spent some time exploring this lovely town, full of history, castle, cathedral, museums and delightful independent and quirky shops. I would also recommend a stop at the lovely gardens at Hodnet Hall or Woollerton Old Hall, especially for lovers of cottage garden style planting, if you are in this area but sadly we did not have time on this trip. 

One of the interesting buildings in LudlowWe arrived around 5pm at the apartment and the pretty Church Stretton area with fantastic views of Long Mynd and the Cardingmill Valley and following advice from Ian and Julie at Arden House we headed down to Housmans in Church Stretton, a pleasant but not strenuous walk. The menu here was quite kind to vegetarians and my other half had an adventurous tapas mix including interesting salads and hummus and I had a variation on arancini using potato instead of rice in the mix. Desserts sounded lovely too but we had no room!

The next day we rose early and got the chance to have a walk in the fabulous Cardingmill Valley (National Trust) before all the tourists arrived. I have never been here before and I was very impressed – the scenery is stunning and there were lots of lovely walks, benches to rest on, a NT tearoom (doesn’t open until 10am so too late for us!) and for adventurous types you can walk up the reservoir and swim there. We had a potter around the shops in Church Stretton and the excellent Antique Centre (yes, of course I bought a few things) before moving onto lovely Ludlow, only a short drive away via the A49. The Clock Tower, LudlowThis is another very pretty town with masses of history, well known for being a foodie’s paradise and for hosting performances at the castle. Although we had a very inexpensive lunch here at a church cafe we emerged after just a few hours nearly bankrupt as the range of charity/vintage/antique and independent clothes shops were just altogether too tempting.  We drove back on smaller roads, passing through Herefordshire and Powys borders and stopped off for afternoon tea at the clock tower tea room in pretty Knighton – not for the faint hearted as it is really hilly. This is a lovely tearoom with nice food and ever nicer staff, set in an old fashioned chandlers style store, something for everyone.  The drive back was so scenic in the sunshine and the houses in the areas we drove though, stone, half timbered, thatched, all looked as if they had come directly from the pages of a fairy tale book  and reinforced my opinion that Shropshire is England’s’ secret treasure of a county. Later we walked back down into town for a drink at a local historical Marston’s pub where we were able to sit outside and enjoy the fine weather, we also had time for a lovely walk around town accompanied by a carillon of bells from the local church which seemed to be practising its repertoire – a perfect end to a perfect trip.

Read my review about Arden House.

438 people found this helpful

Share Article:

Tina Fox

Retired charity director

Leave a comment


This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Sign up to our newsletter to receive the latest travel tips on top destinations.

Join the club

Become a member to receive exclusive benefits

Our community is the heart of Silver Travel Advisor, we love nothing more than sharing ideas, inspiration, hints and tips between us.

Most Recent Articles

Solo travel holidays isn’t confined to the young and restless; it’s a liberating experience that transcends generations….

Come feel the love on a Princess cruise. You’ll enjoy the MedallionClass experience others simply can’t, and it’s exclusively for everyone. Visit incredible destinations and be involved in the best experiences around each one of them.

Experience more with Princess and connect effortlessly with the world around you, spend time away with loved ones, take a moment for yourself, and fall in love with your holiday of a lifetime, every time.

With over 20 years of experience, Wendy Wu Tours has mastered the art of creating exceptional, fully inclusive tours which showcase the very best of each destination.

Each tour is led by a world-class guide, who will highlight the very best of their homeland, and includes authentic cultural experiences so you are not just seeing the sights, but truly immersing yourself in local life.

Say hello to ease at sea. Ambassador’s purpose is simple: they want to inspire every guest to experience authentic cruising, effortlessly and sustainably. Passionate about protecting our oceans and destinations, their ships comply with the highest industry emission standards and there is no single-use plastic on board.

On your voyage, you will receive the warmest of welcomes from the Ambassador community as you sail upon the friendliest ships afloat.

This is a global co-operative co-owned by local partners using real local experts and guides, which supports local communities, environments and wildlife. It offers travellers quirky places to stay, activity holidays and learning experiences. Not In The Guidebooks gets travellers off the beaten track into local culture with day experiences and longer, immersive adventures.

From wild wellness breaks in Wales to painting in Portugal, sustainable adventures in Mauritius to food safaris in Brazil, this is immersive, exciting travel.

Seabourn’s five intimate ships carry guests to the heart of great cities, exclusive yacht harbours and secluded coves around the world, while two new purpose-built expedition ships will combine exhilarating adventures in remote destinations with the sophisticated amenities of the world’s finest resorts at sea.

From the luxury of all suite accommodations to complimentary fine wines and spirits, and a no tipping policy, Seabourn exemplifies the definition of travelling well.