If you wish to take a step back in time as well as explore a quaint countryside village then Lavenham should be listed as your next place to visit in the UK.
Lavenham is located in Suffolk and is known for its beautiful medieval cottages and is one the best preserved historic villages in the whole of England, making it a truly picturesque location.
When you think of the medieval era, you may think buildings should be a dull brown or grey stone colour, but Lavenham has been called the most colourful place in the UK to live due to the pops of pastel colours from buildings scattered around the village.
According to Fine and Country, Lavenham is “one of Britain’s finest medieval villages. It features original Tudor buildings, many of which have been painted pink and yellow, combining colour with history.”
On social media, Lavenham has exploded in popularity as a place to visit because of its unique, crooked and pastel buildings, leading it to be nicknamed the “cutest village” in the whole of England. However, many young people have flocked to the village in recent years as it is one of the filming locations seen in the Harry Potter movies.
Why visit Lavenham
Lavenham was once one of the richest areas in 14th-century England due to its successful trade in wool and became famous for its bright blue cloth produced at the time. Local merchants built the village’s famous homes with their newfound wealth, and the colourful homes have now remained preserved for hundreds of years.
This quaint village is the perfect place to stroll around, as there is a piece of history around every corner, as well as many museums, galleries, and tearooms to explore. There is a guided tour at the Tourist Office which takes you on a walkabout and gives you a detailed look village’s rich history, as well as shares the best spots to take a picture in the village.
One of the most famous buildings in Laveham is the Crooked House, a bright yellow Tudor home over 600 years old which has been described by Country Life magazine as “one of the world’s most photographed homes” as well as “Britain’s wonkiest hous” by the Daily Mail. The upstairs of the building appears to be facing a different direction from the bottom of the house, giving the building a bizarre fairytale-like appearance and home is thought to be the inspiration behind the well-known nursery rhyme ‘There was a Crooked Man.’
Lavenham has also become famous for its connection to the Harry Potter movies, as it is the filming location of the fictional village Godric Hollow, which is meant to be the birthplace of Harry Potter.
Things to do in Lavenham
Visitors are encouraged to visit the Guildhall, which has now become a National Trust museum showing not only local medieval history but the village’s participation during the Second World War as the building was used as a social club for American soldiers stationed nearby. The Guidehall also has a Tea Room as well as a Courtyard Garden, which features a fire engine over 300 years old and a small historic jailhouse to explore.
There is also the Little Hall Museum, a bright orange home which is thought to be one of the oldest buildings in the area, which holds a series of artwork and artefacts which explore Lavenham’s rich history.
One of the major sightseeing destinations in Lavenham is the beautiful Sculpture Park, owned by local artist Kate Denton. Appointments to visit have to be made in advance as it is a private residence, but this wonderful garden features many sculptures by the artist and also features the ruins of the historic Lavenham Hall.
Despite being a small village, Laveham is a great stop for foodies, as it features the Angel, a cosy traditional pub which has a large beer garden, the French House, an elegant French restaurant, the Greyhound, a tapas-inspired restaurant and Number 10, a bistro restaurant as well as the Parlour, a popular ice cream shop. No matter what you are craving, there is plenty of dining options.
However, if you enjoy local food then it is recommended you take care in planning your visit to Lavenham as the village holds a Farmers Market every fourth Sunday of every month at the Village Hall. There you can buy fresh fruit, home-baked cakes, jams, preserves and pies plus locally brewed ales and wines.
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