Dreams of Downton: gorgeous photos of Oxfordshire

St Mary's Church, Bampton, was the setting for many key Downton Abbey scenes. credit: Martyn Ferry 2015/Getty Images
St Mary's Church, Bampton, was the setting for many key Downton Abbey scenes. credit: Martyn Ferry 2015/Getty Images

With thatched cottages, medieval manor houses and cosy inns a plenty, rural England doesn’t get much lovelier than the Oxfordshire Cotswolds, so it’s little wonder it was chosen as the backdrop to much of Downton Abbey.

St Mary's Church, Bampton, was the setting for many key Downton Abbey scenes. credit: Martyn Ferry 2015/Getty Images
St Mary’s Church, Bampton, was the setting for many key Downton Abbey scenes. Credit: Martyn Ferry 2015/Getty Images

The Oxfordshire Cotswolds is an area that simultaneously manages to look like every picture-perfect postcard of gently rolling hills, golden nestled villages and wooded valleys ever sent, while also concealing a plethora of quirkier delights.

Scroll down for some of our favourite photos.

Thatched cottages in the Cotswold village of Great Tew, Oxfordshire. Credit: Ian G Dagnall/Alamy
Thatched cottages in the Cotswold village of Great Tew, Oxfordshire. Credit: Ian G Dagnall/Alamy
Old Swan & Minster Mill, Minster Lovell. Credit: Tony Murray Photography
Bike outside the Old Swan & Minster Mill, in the quintessential Cotswold village of Minster Lovell. Credit: Tony Murray Photography
View through the Topiary Garden to the east front of Chastleton House, Oxfordshire. Credit: National Trust Images/Arnhel de Serra
View through the Topiary Garden to the east front of Chastleton House, Oxfordshire. Credit: National Trust Images/Arnhel de Serra
Michelle Dockery and Hugh Bonneville in character as lady Mary Crawley and Lord Grantham for Downton Abbey filming in Bampton. Credit: Wakeham/Splash News/Corbis
Michelle Dockery and Hugh Bonneville in character as Lady Mary Crawley and Lord Grantham for Downton Abbey filming in Bampton. Credit: Wakeham/Splash News/Corbis
The Dovecote in the Pigeon House Garden at Rousham Park House. Credit: paul Felix Photography/Alamy
The Dovecote in the Pigeon House Garden at Rousham Park House. Credit: Paul Felix Photography/Alamy
Row of houses in the Cotswold town of Burford. Credit: Danita Delimont/Getty Images
Row of houses in the Cotswold town of Burford. Credit: Danita Delimont/Getty Images

For our full feature on the Oxfordshire Cotswolds, see the March/April 2016 (May 2016 in the US) issue of BRITAIN

Read our top 10 guide to Downton Abbey film locations

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