Burford Tourist Information & Visitor Guide
Burford’s famous High Street sweeps downhill towards the River Windrush with its three arched medieval bridge and its impressive church. The streets are flanked by an unbroken line of ancient houses and shops, many perched at apparently haphazard angles.
Little changed over the centuries, Burford is popular with visitors, both for its beauty and history but also for its shopping, especially antiques, and for the wide variety of places to eat, with restaurants, pubs and teashops. Here you can stay in a hotel frequented by King Charles and Nell Gwynn, dine where Nelson dined or visit England’s oldest pharmacy, a chemist’s since 1734.
Half way down the hill, the 16th century Tolsey building, once the meeting place for medieval merchants, now houses The Tolsey Museum, a delightful local museum illustrating the town's social and industrial past.
There are wonderful alleyways and side streets just waiting to be explored and next to a set of medieval almshouses stands St John’s church, a permanent memorial to Burford’s medieval wealth. This fine church is a real gem with many interesting memorials charting some of Burford's great families including one to Henry VIII’s barber surgeon, which includes one of the earliest depictions of native Americans and the ostentatious Tanfield tomb. On the baptismal font is the scratched name of Anthony Sedley, one of the Levellers, mutinous rebels in Cromwell’s army, who were besieged in the church in 1649 and had to watch from the roof as their ringleaders were executed in the churchyard.
Every May there is commemoration of the rebellion, Levellers Day, with a colourful procession through the town and speeches, debate and music celebrating freedom of speech and human rights.
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