In the heart of rural Lincolnshire, 19 miles south of Lincoln, lies Sleaford, a bustling market town with a long and varied history.
Sleaford is a traditional market town and hasmany fine buildings including the splendid 13th century church, St Denys', renowned for its wonderful stained glass and traceried windows. The church has one of the oldest stone-built spires in England and stands an impressive 144ft (44m) high. St. Denys' also forms the backdrop to the market place where an outdoor market is held every Monday, Friday and Saturday selling a wide variety of goods and produce. On the first Saturday of each month there is a Farmers' Market selling locally-grown fresh produce.
As well as having three markets a week, Sleaford is home to The National Centre for Craft & Design - the UK's largest centre for craft, design and making. In a refurbished warehouse on the banks of the River Slea, you'll find four floors of gallery spaces with a regular programme of exhibitions and events, a contemporary craft shop, cafe and residents artists' workshop. Across Navigation Yard is Navigation House, a refurbished original canal company office built in 1838. This grade II listed building is thought to be the only one of its kind still in existence, has a heritage theme covering the early development of the new River Slea and portrays the story of the Navigation and its significant impact on Sleaford’s history.
The River Slea running through the town once brought barges to Navigation Wharf via the Slea Navigation. The Navigation was a key trade route central to the town's burgeoning growth and brought prosperity to many, plus a last heritage which can still be explored today at Navigation House - the Company's canal office built in 1838. You can also follow the picturesque walk along the Sleaford Navigation to Cogglesford Mill, a fully restored and working 18th century watermill where milling has taken place for over a thousand years.
You can also learn more about Sleaford by visiting Sleaford Museum on South Gate. Visit their website for more information - www.sleafordmuseum.org.uk
Visitors can also explore the history of Sleaford with the 'When in Sleaford Trail' inspired by the towns rich heritage. Developed by artsNK, The trail features a series of bronze roundels, created by artist David Mackie situated in pavements and on walls acting as way-markers, mapping out pathways through and around Sleaford and informing residents and visitors about existing public artworks.
For more information or to download a copy of the trail visit www.artsnk.org/when-in-sleaford.
The surrounding countryside is full of walking opportunities ranging in distance allowing you to discover North Kesteven's picturesque landscape and distinct heritage known as the Stepping Out Network. For more informaiton visit the CountrysideNK website.
For more information, please contact the North Kesteven District Council Tourism Team by email or phone 01529 414155