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      20.04.2001 01:45
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      Stroud is a middle sized market town that holds a lot of history. It was at Neather Lypiatt manor right at the top of Stroud where the gun powder plot was planed. This building rests out of view at the side of the Bisley road, one of the main routs out of Stroud. This house, now owed by the prince and princess Michael of Kent, once belonged to the Whittington family from Gloucester, remember the puss and boots children’s story? The real Richard Whittington once lived there before moving to London. The cricket player Jack Russell was born in Stroud and has lived around the area ever since. If you go to the top of the High street there is a charity shop which occupies a medieval building. The building was thought to be later than this, but during a demolition of a factory building in the late 80’s a medieval glass window was found. The window is still in its original place facing the pedestrian crossing. Part of Stroud’s history is its two canals. From the river Severn up to Stroud there’s the Stroudwater canal, and from Stroud to the Themes it’s the Themes and Severn canal. If you go from the town center, go under the railway bridge and stand on the bridge next to the Bell Inn, one side of the bridge is the Themes and Severn, and the other side is the Stroudwater canal. The town today is in a state of ‘refurbishment’, after going down the drain lately. A lot of businesses left during the ‘90’s, leaving the town in a bit of a mess with lots of boarded up shop windows. Of late though, things are turning around. Stroud is known mostly for its health shops and alternative medicine. If you want to eat GM free locally grow fruit and veg, whether its bought from an organic shop or eaten in an organic café, you’ll find it in Stroud. Each year Stroud puts on the Stroud show, a popular event including stalls, a carnival by local groups, music and loads
      more. The event is held during the summer at Stratford Park, a picturesque protected park which has its own mini railway! There’s a new museum in Stratford park, in a new specially built unit adjoining the manor house which gives the park the name. Next door is the Stratford Park Leisure Center, with indoor and outdoor swimming pool, gym, indoor and outdoor tennis and basket ball courts. In the past few months King’s Street has had a new surface laid to make it more pedestrian friendly. Most of the towns streets have been pedestrianized in a bid to bring back the people who would sooner get a bus to Gloucester. At the bottom of the High street there’s Bank gardens, an ideal place to go and eat your fish and chips from the chip shop at the bottom of the High street. If you follow the paths which lead towards St. Lawrence’s church which overlooks the gardens you will come to the front of the church, and facing away from the entrance to the church, looking over to your right you can see the burial place of the last man to die in Britain from a duel. Part of Stroud’s ‘refurbishment’ is the plan to build a cinema where the bus station currently is. This idea is far from new, there have been plans for a cinema in Stroud ever since the last one closed down some 30 years ago. One piece of real-estate many people would like to get their hands on is Rodborough Fort. Its looked down over Stroud and the Severn estuary for many years now. In fact, go to either Rodborough or Selsley common and you can enjoy a brilliant views over the river Severn, on a clear day you can easily see right over to the Black mountains. Another landmark is the Hill Paul building on cheepside, next to the railway station. The former mill has been derelict for years, in fact it was due to be torn down months ago, but local people have embarked on a plan to raise the £1.6 million necessary to buy t
      he building. Raising the funds to buy the building is one thing, raising the necessary cash to make the building safe could be quite another. The most controversial landmark in the Stroud area is the wind turbine at Nympsfield. Personally I like the way it stands majestically overlooking the landscape, but locals have hated the whole idea since day one. They’ve complained about the noise (what noise? You can hardly hear anything stood next to it, let alone two miles away!), the interference it caused to their TV signals, how many kettles of water it could boil and so on. For directions just ask anyone for the wind turbine, they’ll know what you mean! If your in Stroud and want to visit the police station, just look for the big white ugly breeze block which stands out like s saw thumb. Its just up the road from the medieval window mentioned above. All in all, Stroud is not the sort of place you would want to go out of your way to visit, unless you would enjoy the history of the place. But there’s nothing really bad about it. If your in the area, I would pay a visit to the wind turbine at Nympsfield, between Stroud, and Nailsworth to the south. One advantage of living in Stroud is that if your ill and need to see a doctor, you could always pay a visit to Dr Mark Porter! For the Stroud tourist information center call 01453 765 768 Stroud district council 01453 766 321 Stroud town council 01453 762 817 For more opinions on Stroud visit www.openroads.com/easy_search.php3?&worldzone=BI&country=ENG&mode=easy&geoid=c 10000779&srch_reg_type=geo_text I know it’s a long address! Or visit www.stroudfestival.co.uk www.madeinstroud.org www.Stroud.gov.uk

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