Where Laurie Lee fell in love

Experience Laurie Lee's "whole world unlocked and seething"...

UNITED KINGDOM - SEPTEMBER 07: Country lane rural scene in Swinbrook in The Cotswolds, England, United Kingdom
 (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)

When you have a hankering to feel, “the green back on earth and the whole world unlocked and seething”, there can be few better places to head to than Laurie Lee’s Slad Valley in the nook of the rolling Cotswolds.


The BBC’s highly acclaimed adaptation, which is available to view on iPlayer until 17th October 2015, was actually filmed in nearby Miserden, as Slad’s steep hills and roadside pub, the Woolpack, would have been unpractical for the huge mechanism that makes up a modern-day film crew. 

If you want to feel that you’re stepping onto the set, Miserden is a rewarding place for a visit. A private estate-run village, the landscape is beautifully unspoilt, and despite covering a red phone box with camouflage, adding railings to the local school and laying scalpings over the tarmac, few changes were needed to take the village back in time.

Why not bring your bike and ride like Laurie’s joyful mum down the long sweep through the village? Or sip a cider in the Carpenter’s Arms, which stood in for Lee’s Woolpack in the tense scene where an outsider is murdered by villagers.

But if you want to be true to the novel and walk in the footsteps of the lyrical Lee, there are lovely walks to be had in Slad itself. Stroll through hills, valleys and woodland and watch out for Lee’s old school as you head to the characterful Woolpack for locally-sourced seasonal food, real ales and, of course, cider.

“We were given roast apples and hot mince pies, in our nostrils were spices like myrrh”, Cider with Rosie.

Words by Agnes Davis


Main image: Getty images