Goosey is in the middle of what is known locally as the Vale of the White Horse, an area to the north of the racing centre of Lambourn, its surrounding downland and the Ridgeway, the ancient track which runs 87 miles from Ivinghoe Beacon in Buckinghamshire to Avebury in Wiltshire. This national trail is popular with walkers, runners, riders and off-road cyclists.
The county capital Oxford, “the city of dreaming spires” is only 20 minutes away. It boasts numerous theatres, museums, historic university buildings, a covered market and activities such as punting on the River Cherwell.
Five miles west of Oxford is Blenheim Palace in the small Cotswold town of Woodstock, a stunning home given to the 1st Duke of Marlborough by the nation after his victory in the Battle of Blenheim 1704. It was also the birth place of Sir Winston Churchill and he is buried in the next door village.
Bampton is a village just north of the Thames. It is best known for the church scenes in Downton Abbey though the locals play it down. Highclere Castle, where the bulk of the series is filmed is half an hour away.
The Cotswold Wildlife Park
The Cotswold Wildlife Park, particularly popular with children is 25 minutes away by the stunning historical town of Burford (My Grandparents went there on honeymoon). www.cotswoldwildlifepark.co.uk
Lambourn houses over 1000 racehorses and is characterised by large areas of open grassland gallops. The 2015 Grand National winner, Many Clouds is trained there as well as the highest rated chasers of modern times, Sprinter Sacre. Whilst the winner of the Cheltenham Gold Cup 2015 is trained in the next door village, Letcombe Bassett.
If you enjoy a little retail therapy Bicester Village is half an hour away.
During the summer, Giffords a magical village green circus, tours much of the locality.
I couldn’t recommend it highly enough if you’re staying for any length of time but book early to avoid disappointment.
Wantage is a small market town (5 miles from Goosey) which has a market every Wednesday and Saturday and other supermarkets and shops. It’s where King Alfred (849) and Lester Piggott (widely regarded as one of the greatest flat racing jockeys of all time) were both born. A statue of King Alfred stands in the centre of the market square - there is not one of Lester yet....
Faringdon is also a small market town (4 miles from Goosey) and stands on a hill overlooking the Thames. The Folly, a prominent tower, can be seen for miles around particularly at Christmas when it is lit up. Market day is every Tuesday with a Farmers' market on the first Tuesday in every month.
King Alfred, Wantage
Longacre - Holiday Let Oxfordshire. Holiday House Oxon.