Things to do in Gaydon, Warwickshire
It is conveniently close to the M40, making it a popular place for London commuters to live. Plans to build a service station at Gaydon were scrapped just before the motorway was completed.World War II, Gaydon was the location for a large RAF base just outside the village. It was where a number of Vulcan, Victor and Valiant bombers were stationed.
After the war was over, the airfield was used for operational bombers. After 1965 it was used for training squadrons until it closed in 1974.
The airfield was bought by British Leyland and it was used as a testing ground for its cars. Eventually it developed into the Gaydon Centre, home of Land Rover's headquarters and design centre.
Another interesting building near Gaydon is the National Archive of the British Film Institute.
It took over a disused military base to store its highly flammable nitrate film elements.
It is now the largest archive of film and television in the world, but is not open to the general public.
Present Day Gaydon
Gaydon stands on the crossroads of two minor roads.
The inn was a notorious haunt of highwaymen in the 18th century.
The village also has another pub called the Malt Shovel.
Currently the village, under the guidance of the parish council, is re-establishing its historic roots and community spirit. This includes plans to revive the local allotments nad all the community feeling that goes with them.
The village has also established a local shop to serve the community with fresh local produce and necessities. It is staffed by volunteers and all profits are being ploughed back into the community.
One of the major employers in the area is the Jaguar Land Rover headquarters and plant. Aston Martin also has its headquarters at the same site.
Things to Do Around Gaydon
The Heritage Motor Centre is next door to the Land Rover factory and houses the largest collection of British vehicles in the world.20th century to the present day. The museum offers free guided tours and is suitable for all ages.
The National Herb Centre is on the road to Banbury and makes a pleasant place to visit. As well as having an unusual plant centre it also has a gift shop, café/deli, children's play area and a nature trail.