Illston-on-the-Hill WI

Stoneywell Cottage

Roy Mitchell’s recent presentation offered a captivating journey into the historical and architectural wonders of Stoneywell Cottage. A quintessential representation of Arts and Crafts ideal, nestled within the idyllic countryside and owned by the National Trust. Stoneywell Cottage has endured a rich tapestry of events, from its humble beginnings in 1898 to its current status as a cherished heritage site.

Constructed in 1898 Stoneywell Cottage stands as a testament to craftsmanship, utilizing locally sourced stone and timber from the Cotswold region. The cottage epitomizes the ethos of the Arts and Crafts movement with its thatched roof and meticulous attention to detail. However, tragedy struck in 1939 when a fire ravaged the structure, prompting a reconstruction effort spearheaded by the Gimson family. Under their stewardship, the cottage was restored to its former glory. Adorned with a Swithland slate roof, thus preserving its timeless allure. Within the walls lie an array of objects that encapsulate the essence of this influential artistic and philosophical movement. From handcrafted furniture to decorative pieces, each item bears witness to the ingenuity of craftsmanship synonymous with the Arts and Crafts era.

Enchanting Gardens

Beyond its architectural splendour, Stoneywell Cottage boasts enchanting gardens that have evolved over the years. In 1953 Donald and Ann Gimson undertook a remarkable endeavour to develop the gardens. Transforming them into a botanical haven adorned with 156 varieties of rhododendrons and azaleas.

Roy’s illuminating talk provided a captivating glimpse into a bygone era where craftsmanship, nature and cultural heritage converged. Stoneywell Cottage stands as a testament to the enduring allure of the Arts and Crafts movement, inviting visitors to immerse themselves in its timeless charm and beauty.

For more on visiting Stoneywell Cottage, see the National Trust Stoneywell Cottage webpage.

Jane Shute