Wet cows on my way to work this morning

Minchinhampton is an ancient market town, located on a hilltop 4 miles (6.4 km) south-south-east of Stroud, Gloucestershire, England, in the Cotswolds. Nearby is Minchinhampton Common, a recreation area for walkers and golfers. The Common is also used as grazing land for the cows of local farmers in the summer.

There are good views from the Common, west over the Severn estuary into Wales, and east to the Golden Valley and further into the Cotswolds.

The town's shops are clustered in and around the High Street and comprise a general store, two hairdressers, Boots the Chemist, an art gallery, a butcher's shop, two restaurants, a cafe, an electrical retailers, an antiques shop, an estate agents and several charity shops, together with The Crown Inn.

The main square has a War Memorial and an early Market House, where a market is held every Thursday.

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Biodiversity UK

Around 100ha of Minchinhampton Common, have been improved through partnership work with the Committee of Commoners and the National Trust, using Higher Level Stewardship (HLS). This site is important for lowland limestone grassland. It is a BAP priority habitat, important for its geological interest, particularly fossils. It is also home to a variety of important BAP species such as the Duke of Burgundy and Small blue butterflies, juniper and as a hibernacula for over-wintering Greater Horseshoe Bats. [1]

Environment quality

Minchinhampton is close to the former Ministry of Defence airfield, Aston Down, now used for gliding. In 2005, following a Freedom of Information request, the local newspaper revealed that Aston Down is contaminated with arsenic, hydrocarbons and radium. Since the site is located above a vulnerable aquifer, local residents have formed a pressure group, the Aston Down Action Group, in an effort to persuade local government and central government agencies to implement more stringent safety regulations.

Global connections UK

The town is twinned with Nkokoto, in Tanzania.

Walking UK

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Districts of South West England

Bath and North East Somerset • Bournemouth • Bristol • Caradon • Carrick • Cheltenham • Christchurch • Cotswold • East Devon • East Dorset • Exeter • Forest of Dean • Gloucester • Isles of Scilly • Kennet • Kerrier • Mendip • Mid Devon • North Cornwall • North Devon • North Dorset • North Somerset • North Wiltshire • Penwith • Plymouth • Poole • Purbeck • Restormel • Salisbury • Sedgemoor • South Gloucestershire • South Hams • South Somerset • Stroud • Swindon • Taunton Deane • Teignbridge • Tewkesbury • Torbay • Torridge • West Devon • West Dorset • West Somerset • West Wiltshire • Weymouth and Portland

Counties with multiple districts: Cornwall • Devon • Dorset • Gloucestershire • Somerset • Wiltshire

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  1. Natural England, April 9 2008
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