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Wantage

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Wantage is a small town in Oxfordshire, 16 miles southwest of Oxford. It's on the edge of the Berkshire Downs and nowadays administered as part of the Vale of White Horse district.

Understand

The Vale of White Horse district contains a number of small village and places of interest including the small market town of Faringdon. The town is particularly proud of one ex-resident, King Alfred the Great (849-899) who was born in the town (although it was the village of Wanating at that time). Alfred probably had little memory of the town as he was sent to Rome at the age of 4.

Get in

By road

The main road connection to the town is the A417 running eastwards from the town to the A34 Winchester to Salford main road (7 miles) and westwards to theA420 Oxford to Swindon main road (10 miles).

By train

The nearest station to the town is in Didcot.

By bus

Local area bus map published by Oxfordshire Council.

  • Stagecoach services 31 & 34 Wantage to Oxford via Abingdon.
  • Thames Travel service 32 runs Grove-Wantage-Didcot-Abingdon. Service 36 & X36 run Wantage-Grove-Didcot-Wallingford.
  • Other operators running more limited services

By bicycle

National cycle Route 544runs between the town and Didcot where it connects to National Cycle Route 5 Reading to Holyhead.

Get around

The town is small enough to get around on foot.

See

  • 1 Whitehorse HillUffington. The site of an Iron Age hill fort and Uffington White Horse. The site sits on the ridgeway long distance footpath, which follows the line of a chalk ridge which separates the Berkshire Downs to the south and the vale of the white horse to the north. The horse has been cut into the chalk downs can be seen from miles around. It has been "cleaned" by local communities about every 20 years continuously since it was first made about 2000 to 3000 years ago. The hill fort consists of a large circular bank and ditch 1-1.6km in circumference, with grass all over and inside. There are great views from the site, which is fantastic for pic-nics on a sunny day. Also nearby is the Dragon's Hill which appears to be man made and could somehow be associated to the site. Access is easiest by car - it has two car parks (one of which is nearer the horse and recommended only for visitors requiring easier access) The lower car park includes some signage explaining the Whitehorse, and ridgeway. There are picnic tables near by. One could also easily take in the White Horse and Hill Fort, on a walk along the ridgeway.
  • 2 Vale and Downland Museum, 19 Church St, Wantage OX12 8BL, ☏ +44 1235 771447, ✉ vdmtourism@gmail.com. M-Sa 9:30AM-4PM (galleries 10AM-last admission 3:30PM). Free 2-hr parking is available in the Civic Hall Car Park, just off Church St.

Do

  • 1 The Funky Teapot (Paint your own pottery), 21b Grove St, Wantage OX12 7AB (2-minute walk from the Market Place), ☏ +44 1235 769777. Tu W F Sa 9:30AM-last entry starting to paint 5PM. Targeted at children.
  • 2 Farmer Gow's (Childrens') Activity Farm, Fernham Rd, Longcot, nr Faringdon, SN7 7PR (10 miles W of Wantage), ☏ +44 1793 780555, ✉ enquiries@farmergows.co.uk. Daily 10AM-5PM.
  • 3 Wantage Leisure Centre (Swimming Gym, Fitness, Squash, Badminton), Portway Wantage OX12 9BY, ☏ +44 1235 766201.
  • 4 Asti Equestrian (Horse Riding School), Millaway Farm, Goosey, Nr Faringdon SN7 8PA, ☏ +44 1367 710288, ✉ enquiries@asti-equestrian.co.uk.

Buy

  • 1 Waitrose (Supermarket), 17 Wallingford St Wantage OX12 8BD, ☏ +44 1235 772313. M-Th 8AM-10PM; F 8AM-9PM; Sa 8AM-8PM; Su 10AM-4PM.
  • 2 Sainsbury's (Superstore/Supermarket), Limborough Rd, Wantage OX12 9AJ, ☏ +44 1235 770601. M-Sa 8AM-9PM; Su 10:30AM-4:30PM.

Eat

  • 1 The Greyhound Inn (Pub, food & accommodation), Main St, Letcombe Regis OX12 9JL, ☏ +44 1235 771969, ✉ info@thegreyhoundletcombe.co.uk. Pub: M 10AM-10PM; Tu-Sa 10AM-11PM; Su 11AM-10PM. Food: M-Th noon-2:30PM, 6PM-9PM; F Sa noon-2:30PM, 6PM-9:30PM; Su noon-3:30PM, 6PM-8:30PM.
  • 2 The Teapot Tearoom and Gardens, Britchcombe Farm, UffingtonFaringdon SN7 7QJ, ☏ +44 1367 821022. Great cream tea (scones, clotted cream and jam). Also campsite across the road.
  • 3 Sylheti Spice (Indian Restaurant), 29 Market Place, Wantage OX12 8AJ, ☏ +44 1235 764164. Su-Th 6PM-11:30PM; F-Sa 6PM-midnight.
  • 4 Yummy Thai (Thai Restaurant), 8 Newbury St, Wantage OX12 8BS.
  • 5 The King Alfred's Head (Pub & Food), 31 Market Place, Wantage, OX12 8AH, ☏ +44 1235 771595, ✉ kingalfredshead@live.com. Daily noon-late.
  • 6 The Fox and Hounds, High StreetUffington. M-Sa 11AM-11PM; Su noon-10:30PM. Pub in Uffington with an old bar, good food, and a beer garden with views of White Horse Hill.

Drink

  • 1 The Lamb Inn (Pub & Food), 59 Mill St, Wantage OX12 9AB, ☏ +44 1235 766768, ✉ sales@lambinnwantage.co.uk.
  • 2 The Panini Shop (Cafe), 36 Market Plac,e Wantage OX12 8AH, ☏ +44 7580 723826 (mobile), ✉ paninishopwantage@yahoo.co.uk. M-Sa 9AM-4PM.
  • 3 The Bay Tree Cafe, 9 Newbury St, Wantage OX12 8BU, ☏ +44 1235 766969, ✉ bev@baytreecafe.co.uk. M-Sa 9AM-16PM; Su 10AM-3PM.
  • 4 The Royal Oak (Pub), Newbury St, Wantage OX12 8DF (At the junction of the A4507 & A338), ☏ +44 1235 763129. M-F 5:30PM-11PM; Sa noon-2:30PM, 7PM-11PM; Su noon-2PM, 7PM-10:30PM.

Sleep

  • 1 The Bear Hotel (Hotel, Bar & Accommodation), 14 Market Place, Wantage OX12 8AB, ☏ +44 1235 766366, ✉ info@thebearwantage.co.uk. Single £60; Single occupancy of double £70; Double/twin £80.
  • 2 Horse & Jockey (Accommodation, pub & food), 25 Faringdon Road, Stanford In The Vale SN7 8NN, ☏ +44 1367 710302, ✉ info@horseandjockey.org. Pub: M-Th 11AM-3PM, 5PM-midnight; F Sa 11AM-12:30AM; Su noon-11PM. Restaurant/pub with a few good quality rooms in adjoining building. Excellent breakfast.
  • 3 Manor Farm (B&B), West Challow OX12 9TJ (2½ miles W of Wantage), ☏ +44 1235 763188, ✉ enquiries@manorfarm-wantage.co.uk. Single from £40; Double from £75.
  • 4 Quince Cottage (B&B), Letcombe Regis OX12 9JP (2 miles SW of Wantage), ☏ +44 1235 763652, ✉ richard.boden@bodenfamily.info.
  • 5 Greyhound Inn, Main St, Letcombe Regis OX12 9JL, ☏ +44 1235 771969. 18th C country pub with 8 rooms in the bucolic Vale of the White Horse, gets rave reviews for comfort and food. B&B double £100.

Connect

  • 1 Post Office, 18 Wallingford St, Wantage OX12 8AX. M-F 9AM-5:30PM; Sa 9AM-12:30PM.

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