BISBROOKE: A PRETTY VILLAGE IN RUTLAND
Bisbrooke, situated (A small village straddling an ironstone ridge between two brooks as the name suggests) is the complete epitome of an English village, located in the county of Rutland in the East Midlands.
As you enter the village via a turn off from the A47, you are met by a lush green encased canopy of green from the hedges before you glimpse the winding roads and stonewalled cottages. It’s around a 30 minute drive from Leicester city centre so pretty straight forward to get to if you fancy a nice country walk.
The History of Bisbrooke
The village of Bisbroooke was first mentioned in the 1086 Doomsday Book as Bitlesbroch and over the centuries the name has suffered many changes, well 19 to be precise including Bitelesbroke, Pysbroke and Butlisbroke.
Information gathered from the Norman surveys signifies that half of the land was owned by the king and the rest belonged to Countess Judith Fotheringhay in Northamptonshire. Post dissolution of the monasteries in 1547 and several exchanges of ownership Bisbrooke or Pisbrooke as it was spelt, became the property of the Sheriff of Rutland’s, Edward Andrews.
Fast forward and the Bisbrooke estate was eventually acquired during the Commonwealth by Sir George Manners (Father of the 8th Earl of Rutland) and thus passed into the Duke of Rutland’s Belvoir Estate and later auctioned in 1918.
Today Bisbrooke is a sleepy, almost French-accented, small village surrounded by varying hues of lush green hills. At the centre of the village is the Parish Church, St John the Baptist, dating back to 1871 in it’s present state, with the tower being completed in 1914 and being given Grade II listing in 1955.
There also two notable graves here which pre-date the building, being those of previous vicars of the Parish, Samuel Thomas Bloomfield and George Alcock MacDonnell.
Bisbrooke Hall lies within the Parish boundaries, closer to the village of Glaston and has been extensively remodelled around 1840. It is currently a beautiful events venue, perfect for a country wedding.
There was a village pub, The Gate, which exists no more, run by Ruby D’Arcy from 1968 to 2012. After Ruby’s death, the pub did not re-open and is now a private residence.
I bet you’d have never imagined that many a schoolboy would frequent at The Gate, from the well-known Uppingham School. They’d walk across the fields in between Uppingham and Bisbrooke for some much-needed time away from boarding. ‘Those’ schoolboys include the likes of the one and only, Stephen Fry, Rick Stein, Johnny Vaughn, David Whittaker and Jonathan Agnew.
I got my first taste of Bisbrooke when I wrote a piece on small independent businesses, Bisbrooke Artisans, having met Lance & Ami, (the team behind the delicious sourdough) at a support small business showcase.
Their beautiful micro-bakery and stunning surroundings inspired me to introduce you to the village and if you fancy learning a bit more about what they do have a gander here or click below.
A Walk Around Bisbrooke
Come and take a walk through Bisbrooke with me through postcard perfect photos. Foxglove lined paths, peony’s swaying in the light summer breeze, daisy’s and Black-eyed Susan’s in gardens hidden by hedgerows, the occasional waft of lavender as the bees interject in between the flowers and smiles from happy friendly villagers, this is most definitely village life at its finest.
Oh, and Ami tells me that an actual elephant was once said to have walked past her cottage and that there’s still a circus family living in Bisbrooke. I do hope this little photo journey of Bisbrooke inspires you to visit more of the British countryside as it has prompted me to further explore Leicestershire’s neighbouring county, Rutland.
You can even combine Bisbrooke as part of a Rutland stay and check out the cute B & B’s and Guesthouses in the neighbouring villages and towns.
The market town of Uppingham is only a short drive away and has some lovely places to stay and eat. Uppingham is also a lovely country walk from Bisbrooke and very picturesque.
Tell me, do you like cute little English villages or do you prefer sticking to the city scape?