The summer sound of leather hitting willow creates a very English feel in Frampton on Severn. Around the village green, the longest in England, cruck cottages cluster with Tudor and Georgian homes. It’s a place of marrow-judging and hoopla at the summer fete, of cask ale in the country pubs, Morris dancers, and bell ringing on Sundays.
In the heart of the community sits Frampton Court, sleeping up to 16 and looking exactly like a Cotswolds murder-mystery evening. It’s stoic and stately, aristocratic and Georgian. But a historic Bath-stone outside hides a whole household of fun inside. Get together, invade, make the spaces your own, get the coffee and Netflix on.
Walk the landscaped acres, watch the geese graze among the willows, cook marshmallows around the firepit, play croquet and cricket on the lawns. Eat beneath the chandelier in the oak-panelled dining room, snooze in front of burning logs, inhale the aroma of burnished wood, sleep in ‘The White Company’ linen, live a different life.
Admirers of parks and gardens have lots to admire here. Frampton Court Estate sits in 1,500 acres, 40 of which are grade-I listed parks and gardens. Wander down to the lake. Watch the waterfowl flap in like planes and sail like boats. Explore the woodlands and wetlands, bring your binoculars and spot rare birds in the Sites of Special Scientific Interest.
Take a pre-prandial gin out on the table and chairs on the terrace beneath the big Cotswold skies. Play croquet or cricket. As darkness drops, wrap up in blankets, light the firepit with the free logs and toast marshmallows in the moonlight. Frampton Court is the posh boy who never lost his sense of fun.
The living spaces here radiate manor-like magnificence, yet they’re family-friendly, too. There’s exquisitely worked oak and pine panelling at every turn and an oak-and-holly staircase with matching dog-gate. Furniture straight out of Georgian times sits alongside modern playthings for the perfect blast of finery and fun.
Anywhere with a drawing room and a morning room is going to be grand. Feel like Lords and Ladies as you relax, revive and rejuvenate in front of a burning fire among friends, family and doggy best friend, too. At night, pour a pick-me-up and pick a flick in the cinema room with 58” telly and Bose soundbar.
Feeling traditional? Get around the piano in the hall for a singalong. Or just warble away to the Bose Bluetooth. Stream away on the BT broadband. Plunder the books and toys. Or pop along to the games room for board games, children’s play area and endless games of pool.
There are spaces here to congregate and celebrate, or to be apart and cogitate. Join the madding crowd around the burning logs or just wrap up in a blanket in the drawing room and disappear into a good book among the quirky antiques and original drawings of Frampton flora.
Underfloor heating will warm your toes as you hover over the Everhot with four electric ovens. After a trip to Stroud Farmers’ Market, you’ll do yourself proud armed with fresh local fare including veg, meat, fish, honey, cheese and cake, plus milk, yoghurt and ice-cream from two local farms.
If you can’t stand the heat, get out of there and let Aureum Catering or Sally Armstrong take over for one-off celebrations or fully catered stays. Have another night off with a takeaway from Indian Garden or Fat Toni’s Pizzeria. Wash it all down with a red, white or fizz from Raffles Fine Wines.
Potter down the lane to eat out at The Three Horseshoes, with its regular boules tournaments, or The Bell Inn, or drive to The Old Badger for a Sunday roast and an ever-changing cast of cask ale. Go gastro at The Frocester, or drop your dog by the fire at The Bell Inn in Selsley and tuck into home-roasted nuts and pickled egg.
Visit the Cotswolds’ institution, William’s Food Hall. It’s an award-winning seafood restaurant, a fishmonger, a deli, a charcuterie and a caterer all in one, and one of Rick Stein’s ‘Food Heroes’. Head to The Painswick for sea-bream carpaccio, beef Wellington or Cotswolds lamb. Or to Calcot Manor for foodie treats from a Michelin-starred chef.
These are no ordinary rooms. Expect Huguenot tapestries, art from Old Masters, four-poster beds, panelled walls, ‘The White Company’ linen, and original Georgian furniture. Live a different life.
In the south wing on the first floor, you’ll find the Rosamund room, sleeping two in a double with en-suite complete with rolltop bath and shower. In the north wing, the Pilcher room also sleeps two in twins that can be zipped to make a superking. Refresh in the private bathroom opposite.
On the second floor, the Flora also provides twins or superking flexibility but with en-suite bath and shower. The Clutterbuck comes with tapestry, Delft toilet bowl, kingsize four-poster (complete with helpful ladder) and a rolltop bath and sink in the room, while the Clifford is a kingsize with en-suite bath and shower. Finally, Tapestry is a four-poster superking with steps to the room and Wallington can be made up as a superking or twin, both with en-suite baths with cradle showers.
Kids like screens but they also hanker after real-world excitement and adventure. Where better for that than somewhere awash with oak panels and four posters, somewhere they could hide and never be found? Come here in the snow and you’ll find them in the wardrobes getting all Narnia.
Outside, three acres of garden and 1,500 acres of country estate might just be enough for a few headstands and cartwheels. There’s a lake for teddy-bear picnics and you can watch the geese honk and land on the surface, or explore the woodlands and wetlands and spot rarer breeds with your binoculars.
The lawns are primed for croquet or cricket. Past your bedtime, huddle up around the firepit, load up some logs and bring out the skewers and marshmallows. Raid the shelves for books, pick a flick from Netflix and invade the cinema room, or head down to the games room for board games, play area and pool.
Stream stuff fast on the BT broadband, play your favourite tunes on the Bose Bluetooth, mess about on the piano. Want to make the whole family welcome? Wooden cots are available and dogs are welcome (downstairs) at a small additional charge. Make some memories in a mini-Downton.