The Cobbett Trail
William Cobbett (1763 - 1835) was a radical politician and one of the foremost political journalists on his age. Today he is best remembered for such books as 'Cottage Economy', 'Advice to Young Men' and, his most famous work, 'Rural Rides'. In 1805, William Cobbett moved to Botley to pursue one of his passions, farming.
Follow the Cobbett waymarkers around Botley to discover some of the places associated with him or which he would have known.
Starting at the Market Hall, built in 1848 from funding from the Warner family to hold a weekly market. Heading towards the river, visit Botley Mills and Sherecroft which was once called ‘Botley Hill’ and was rented by William Cobbett. Walk back to the Square, turning left onto Church Lane. The walk continues along Church Lane through the countryside where you pass buildings including Steeple Court Manor, St Bartholomew’s Church, The Old Rectory, which were mentioned in Cobbett’s ‘Rural Rides’. Church Lane becomes Brook Lane and leads back onto the Main road, where you turn right and head towards All Saints Church and back to Botley Square.
Click on the map below to download a copy of the trail.