St Edwards dates to the Norman period and is built from Cotswold stone, though there are different phases of architecture apparent dating from the twelfth to the fourteenth century with renovations taking place in the seventeenth and nineteenth centuries. The north door of the church is flanked by two yew trees giving a fairyland appearance and the stained glass windows are a sight to behold. The funeral of the Who's bass player, John Entwistle, took place at St Edwards in 2002
One of the best known Cotswolds towns, Stow-on-the-Wold is situated atop a hill at the junction of the mains routes through the Cotswolds including the old Roman Fosse Way. The town was founded by Norman lords to capitalise on the passing trade, though originally there was an Iron Age fort on the hill. The town's name is derived from the Saxon 'Stow' meaning religious meeting place and 'Wold' meaning rolling hill. The original name of the town was 'Stow St Edward' or 'Edwardstow' after the town's patron saint. There is a church still in Stow-on-the-Wold named St Edward's, which has a Grade I listed status and is a popular visit when on a tour of the Cotswolds.
The substantial Market Square is evidence of Stow-on-the-Wold's prominence in the wool industry, where at it's height, as many as 20,000 sheep were sold at a time. The town is criss-crossed by narrow alleys called 'chures', which were used in the past to drive and count sheep to the The Square on market days. Today a Farmers Market is held in The Square on the second Thursday of every month. Interesting features of the Market include the town stocks and an ancient cross. Town houses and shops adorn the Square adding to the array of boutique shops, antique shops, art galleries and gift and craft outlets the town has to offer. Just outside town, The Gypsy Horse Fair is held twice a year in May and October.
There's a fine selection of places to eat in Stow-on-the-Wold including restaurants, tea shops, bistros and pubs—such as The Bell at Stow and The Kings Arms in the Market Square—where visitors can enjoy a traditional pub lunch.