Ayot St Lawrence and Shaw's Corner

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This gentle stroll around Ayot St Lawrence is set amidst the Hertfordshire countryside and takes in a Palladian church, Shaw's Corner and a 14th Century inn. The route passes Ayot House, which was once famous as Britain's only silk farm, following a short section of the Hertfordshire Way before looping across fields to reach the Palladian church. Nicholas Revett designed this distinctive building whilst Palladian architecture was enjoying a brief period of popularity in England. Andrea Palladio's architectural treatises drew on the principles of classical Roman architecture, including proportions based on simple mathematical ratios. The style spread across Europe to England, Ireland and later the United States of America.

Ayot St Lawrence is perhaps best known as the home of George Bernard Shaw, the Irish playwright and winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1925. Two of his hallmarks are the extensive prefaces to his published plays and an ironic wit that spawned Shavian observations such as: "England and America are two countries divided by a common language". Bernard Shaw, as he wished to be known, lived at Shaw's Corner from 1906 until his death in 1950. The house and grounds are open to the public as a National Trust property. The route back into the village passes a ruined Norman church before finishing at the Brocket Arms. This 14th Century inn is full of character and has a quintessentially English charm.

England - Central England - Hertfordshire - Chilterns

Features

Church, Great Views, Mostly Flat, Museum, National Trust, Pub, Public Transport

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