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Gloucestershire is a county which is aligned regionally with the south west of England. The county comprises part of the Cotswold Hills, part of the flat fertile valley of the River Severn, and the entire Forest of Dean.

The county town is the city of Gloucester, and other principal towns include Cheltenham, Cirencester, Stroud and Tewkesbury, Thornbury and Chipping Sodbury. The county is also famous for the many beautiful Cotswold towns and villages within its borders such as Bourton–on-the-Water, Stow-on-the-Wold, and The Slaughters – Upper and Lower. The county boasts  outstanding picturesque views across the River Severn and beautiful  scenic countryside settings.

The three principle divisions are:-

The Cotswolds 

Gloucestershire forms the greater part of the Cotswolds region but the counties of Worcestershire, Warwickshire, Oxfordshire, Wiltshire and Somerset also contain parts. It is an area once given over entirely to sheep-farming and many of the fine churches and manor houses owe their existence to the generosity of the wealthy medieval yeoman farmers and wool merchants. The dignified villages and towns owe much of their charm to the use of the warm, honey-coloured limestone which was locally quarried by hand and used alike for humble weavers’ cottages, mansions, and churches. Never far from sight numerous streams wind through the valleys and  alongside main streets.

The Royal Forest of Dean

Nestling between the Wye Valley, the Vale of Leadon and the Severn Valley, the Royal Forest of Dean is one of England’s few remaining ancient forests, covering 27,000 acres of woodland. Designated as a National Forest Park in 1938, this ‘Queen of Forests’ boasts a spectacular range of natural beauty combined with an aura of magic and mystery that has been the inspiration for many great artists and writers including Tolkien and JK Rowling.

The Severn Vale

In the Severn Vale, lush meadows lie alongside the lower reaches of Britain’s longest river, famous for its tidal bore. Half-timbered, black and white buildings are in evidence and the widening estuary is a haven for thousands of wildfowl and wading birds.

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