We’ve been here in our little apartment for a couple of weeks now and are well and truly settled into the village way of life. Not really sure if it’s correct to call the county Northants or its proper name Northamptonshire. Either way the countryside is beautiful and the way of life quiet and relaxing.
Where are we exactly?
We have been to Northamptonshire, or Northants, or even the County of Northampton a few times for weekends away and housesitting and it seems to be a county with a slightly dodgy reputation. Admittedly the big towns like Northampton and Wellingborough aren’t all that (understatement) but the county is full of quaint little villages bursting with charm and character. It is apparently known as the ‘Rose of the Shires‘ and is the southernmost county of the East Midlands.
Our village is called Middleton Cheney, we love the name by the way as it’s a little weird but absolutely unique and very English. It’s tucked away in the far west of the county just three miles from Banbury in Oxfordshire. Dating from the 12th century the village name means ‘Middle Farm‘, not hugely descriptive so I’ll stick to Middleton Cheney.
It really is our type of place as it has couple of shops in the centre, including a small supermarket, a chemist, and a couple of pubs. One of which, the New Inn, is only a hundred metres away and does great food. Seems to be the heart of the community too which is exactly what we like about a country pub.
Oh and an historic church, All Saints, that sits in the village centre and has a spire that can be seen over the treetops from miles away.
Our Airbnb Lodge
Our apartment is a newly constructed one bedroom place in an old farmhouse that has been extended and converted into around 11 properties. Beautifully finished and very comfortable it really is a home from home, although we don’t actually have a home but that’s another story.
Out and About
Being only three miles from Banbury makes shopping unbelievably easy. All the major supermarkets and out-of-town stores are within 10 minutes drive with the smaller town of Brackley being about 10 miles in the other direction. All very easy to get to and then after a busy hectic shop we get to return to our quiet sleepy village, perfect.
So we’ve managed to get out and about a bit as you may well imagine and have explored as much of the area as we can with several canal walks and a lot of muddy footpath expeditions from the village. It’s been cold but apart from today I don’t think we have had any daytime rain for nearly three weeks! So wrapping up in hats and gloves is all we need.
What we’re getting up to
Well it’s all walking, hiking, tramping, rambling, meandering and messing around isn’t it? Mostly messing around to be honest ………
Apart from walking several miles a day we are still househunting online and spend a lot of time reading, doing crafts, and playing games. Favourite game is still Bananagrams but we are both now well into the new phenomenon Wordle. A word puzzle a day that only takes a few minutes but is always a bit of a challenge.
There is another one, even harder, called Nerdle which I love but Jo isn’t so keen on. It involves numbers and sums rather than words so if that’s your thing check it out now. It’s a serious challenge.
Shaun and Katie
The most important benefit of living in Middleton Cheney though is that it is only 25 minutes from Shaun and Katie and we have absolutely loved being to spend so much time with them. From fish’n chips at their place, to helping in their garden, to quick drinks in the Towcester Tap Room, to a countryside walk around our village followed by lovely dinner in the New Inn, it’s been fabulous. We’re looking forward to as much time as possible in their company over the next few weeks and to more exploring of the beautiful Northamptonshire countryside.
01/02 – 13/02/2021