Tranquil, pretty community overlooked by spectacular castle ruins.
Most people think of Clun as a village, but it has the distinction of being granted a very early town charter in the 14th century. It was also mentioned in the Domesday Book.
There is archaeological evidence of habitation back as far as 5000 years ago with Neolithic and Bronze Age tools on display in the town’s museum.
Overlooking the town is the ruined Borderland castle, perched high on 2 ice age mounds with the River Clun running past it, makes a scenic picnic spot and a good place for the children to vent their energy running up and down the embankments.
Today the town is smaller than when it was granted its town status, but it has many interesting buildings and side streets through which to wander.
The narrow 15th century stone packhorse bridge divides the town in two, the ancient part on the south and the newer Norman town on the north.
Take a walk down the High Street and look for the old malt house.
The paper shop has a 12th century cruck beam which is still visible.
St. Catherine’s was a cottage hospital and then a maternity hospital and bears a plaque dating 1893.
Look for the green twin gabled Lower House farmhouse, above the door you will find a plaque-1682 Thos. Morris, gent and Jane his wife, do you think many couples would have such a plaque today?
When you arrive at the corner of Ford Street there is what is called Ship House, it used to be one the town’s pubs.
Continue on to Hospital Street and walk up the street to the Trinity Hospital Alms Houses. You will find them on your right through some iron gates. They were built in 1614 by the Earl of Northampton (brother of the owner of Clun Castle) for support of 12 indigent men of the town.
The men were supposed to pray daily and had strict night time curfews. In the gardens there are statues representing two of the well known residents. The statues have been made by a local sculpture, Jemma Pearson. The simple chapel (1845) is also open to visitors for prayer and a service on Tuesdays at 10 a.m.
The Square was once a hive of activity with the market and shops on all sides. There was livestock, produce, and in the summer when the bilberries ripened all the townspeople would head to the hills to pick the tiny berries to bring to market for sale to the cotton mills up north. The berries would be used for dying the clothes. Today you can still roam the hills and pick the berries for pie or crumble if you walk along the old drover’s roads.
The Town Hall was built by Lord Clive in 1780 and has been a jailhouse and a market hall. Today it is the location of the town museum.
The oldest part of the town is by St George’s Church. It was inhabited very early, perhaps by Bronze Age people; the churchyard indicates pre-Christian inhabitants and worship. The Celtics probably also worshiped on this spot, thus the origin of the name. There was also thought to have been an Anglo-Saxon church on the spot.
Today’s church is Norman and of great size and sits high on a hill looking down to the River Clun, the Castle and the two halves of the town. There are ancient yews on the churchyard and pastoral views if you look around.
The most popular annual event is the Green Man Day at the beginning of Spring when there is a battle on the bridge with the green man and the evil witch!
Visitor Information Point
Located at Bright Flowers shop next to Clun bridge.
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