THE BUILDINGS. THE ARCHITECTURE. OH, OH, OHHHH.
Can you tell that I got very excited when I saw how insanely beautiful all the buildings were? My level of excitement for Yorkshire stone has been exceeded, by a mile. Sorry, Yorkshire - I still love you though.
I almost felt like I was half in the UK and half in Rome, with all the pillars on the buildings and grand features. It was quite incredible, the architecture and skill that had gone into creating such masterpieces in Stroud. The town felt elegant, yet retro, and very charming. It doesn't sound like it should work, but it really did.
One building that really caught my attention was The Subscription Rooms. From what I could gather, it was a live entertainment venue, and had a cafe. The Cotswolds stone that it was made from made the building look so grand, elegant and beautiful. The stone almost looked like it was granite, and so smooth that you just wanted to stroke it. May have looked a bit odd if I had done that...
Throughout the town was a mixture of stone from a lighter cream, to a more vibrant saturated colour. When I was editing my photos (many photos, I should say), I became intrigued of the history of the Cotswolds stone. It's so distinctive, and just blends in so well with the surrounding beautiful countryside, which made me wonder why there was a quite dramatic difference between the colour of stone. So, here's a little history lesson for you.
The Cotswolds stone is Oolitic Limestone, which is believed to have been formed in the Jurassic period (wowza, v. old) and is composed of mainly fragments from marine organisms. Now, here comes the interesting part. The colour of the stone resembles where it was quarried. In the northern Cotswolds you'll find the rich saturated honey stones, whilst further towards Bath, the stone is somewhat a lighter cream and grey-ish.
Fact of the day: The Cotswolds have more listed buildings than anywhere else in the UK. Any wonder with such magnificent stones and buildings?
Amazingly, there are still functioning quarries today, where stone is extracted for repairs, and for new buildings or stone walls. Historically, almost every village would have a quarry! Also, traditionally a Cotswolds house would be made almost entirely by Cotswolds stone. Even the roof tiles!
I do think it's amazing that after all these years, there are still functioning quarries where stones are still being extracted for building new builds that are popping up throughout the county. The world that we live in still blows my mind everyday.
- MM x