Bishops Castle, South Shropshire – voted one of Britain’s top ten market towns by Lonely Planet Magazine in 2011
Bishop’s Castle is a small market town in South Shropshire which was voted one of Britain’s top ten market towns by Lonely Planet Magazine in 2011. Centred on the High and Church streets, which climb from the parish Church. You can admire the Town Hall and many other historic buildings and the unusual Elizabethan House on Crutches, which is supported by wooden posts over a cobbled alley.
The number of pubs reminds us that Bishop’s Castle was once a drovers town – a watering hole for both them and their cattle on their way to market. There are two local breweries – The Six Bells micro-brewery and the Three Tuns – oldest working brewery in Britain. Both hold brewery tours so you can find out about their brewing heritage and sample them one by one.
The long distance paths of the Shropshire Way, Kerry Ridgeway, Offa’s Dyke and the ‘bc ring’ all run through or near the town, so it’s no surprise that Bishop’s Castle has ‘Walkers Are Welcome’ status. There are also a number of short walks and circular trails from the town centre, many of which have pub pit stops.
As you stroll around the medieval town centre you’ll find it has its own unique mix of architecture. Collectors and shoppers in search of the unusual are drawn to Bishop’s Castle by a collection of arts, crafts and independent shops. Its past is celebrated by two museums, one of local history and one about the Bishop’s Castle railway.
Whilst at the top of the town it is worth visiting the site of the old castle, where you can see the remains of the castle wall. It is a beautiful place for a picnic – pick what you fancy from the local food shops or farmers market and pack your hamper.