Next up is the Cheltenham Literary Festival, starting on October 5th in the town centre. JK Rowling is set to talk about her new adult novel, Michael Palin will be there to inspire wanderlust on his talk of Brazil and Sebastian Faulks will entertain the crowds with tales of his life, his words and his new books.

Large amounts of money are bet during festival week, with hundreds of millions of pounds being gambled over the four days.[54] Cheltenham is often noted for its atmosphere, most notably the "Cheltenham roar", which refers to the enormous amount of noise that the crowd generates as the starter raises the tape for the first race of the festival.

Cheltenham Racecourse Summer Cricket Festival Jaz Festival April/May Music Festival in July Literature Festival in October The Wilson - Art Gallery and Museum Pittville Pump Room.

Kit Williams is also responsible for designing the Dragonfly Puzzle Maze at Bourton-on-the-Water.

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It wouldn’t be a visit to Cheltenham without heading to the races for the day with a few plastic cups, a bottle of wine and a will to splurge some dosh on the best name thundering down the tracks. Of course, if you’re not one for the rabble, take your seat in the stands to get the best views and most accomplished company. There are also plenty of fine dining options at Cheltenham Racecourse – you’re sure to work up an appetite with all that betting, after all.

Visitors from all round the world flock to Cheltenham for the International Festival of Literature and Music, and the town is the western gateway to the Cotswolds.

The Liddell’s lived in Hetton Lawn, Cudnall Street, Charlton Kings. The original mirror, or looking glass, is still there. Lewis Carroll was a regular visitor to the home, where Alice’s grandparents lived.

Cheltenham Jazz Festival 29 April - 4 May 2015 The Times Cheltenham Science Festival 2 - 7 June 2015 71th Cheltenham Music Festival 30 June - 11 July 2015 The Times Cheltenham Literature Festival 2 -11 October 2015 World famous Gold Cup National Hunt Festival at Cheltenham Racecourse in March

Amateur rugby union clubs include Cheltenham R.F.C., Cheltenham Saracens RFC, Cheltenham North R.F.C., Old Patesians R.F.C. and Cheltenham Civil Service R.F.C.

Easily accessible from the M5, Cheltenham lies just over an hour away from Bristol and Birmingham and under two hours away from London.  There are excellent transport links by rail and road to the town.

The restored station at Cheltenham Racecourse is the southern terminus of the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway heritage railway. The Honeybourne Line is being extended to Broadway.

Her grandfather Dr Henry Liddell was Dean of Christ Church College in Oxford where he became a friend of Charles Lutwidge Dodgson – better known under his pen name Lewis Carroll. The author was a maths teacher at Oxford University Christ Church College and took Alice and her two sisters on a boat trip.

The Regency town of Cheltenham is where Zara Phillips(Queen's eldest granddaughter) and husbandMike Tindallhave their home (see Royalty in the Cotswolds).

Cheltenham offers a thriving town centre with a wide variety of shops to suite all tastes and pockets. In the Montpellier area of the town you will find luxury boutiques and pavement cafes and in the Suffolks area there are fascinating antique shops and top-class restaurants.

However, recent modern redevelopments see a new generation of visitors to Cheltenham.   The Brewery Quarter is a buzzing district where old meets new and is home to branded stores, a multi-screen cinema, bowling alley and bars offering live gigs and entertainment throughout the week.  Cheltenham is also known for its excellent High Street shops and independent shopping quarters, and in 2017 John Lewis will open a flagship store in the former Beechwood Centre.

The visit of George III with the queen and royal princesses in 1788 set a stamp of fashion on the spa.[9] The spa waters can still be sampled at the Pittville Pump Room, built for this purpose and completed in 1830;[10] it is a centrepiece of Pittville, a planned extension of Cheltenham to the north, undertaken by Joseph Pitt, who laid the first stone 4 May 1825.[11]

The local football teams are Cheltenham Town F.C. who play in the Football League Two, Bishop's Cleeve who play in the Southern League South & West Division, Cheltenham Saracens F.C. in the Hellenic League Premier and Cheltenham Civil Service F.C. who play in the local Gloucester Northern Senior League, and Falcons AFC who play in the Cheltenham 1st and 3rd Division.

Several other cultural festivals, including the Cheltenham Design Festival, Cheltenham Folk Festival, Cheltenham Poetry Festival and Cheltenham Comedy Festival are separately organised but also attract international performers and speakers. A more local event, the Cheltenham Festival of the Performing Arts (formerly Cheltenham Competitive Festival) is a collection of more than 300 performance competitions that is the oldest of Cheltenham's arts festivals, having been started in 1926.

Two sporting events are also routinely described as the "Cheltenham Festival" or ""the Festival": the Cheltenham Cricket Festival, which features Gloucestershire County Cricket Club, and National Hunt racing's Cheltenham Festival.

Cheltenham has played host to and featured in a number of film and TV series:[40][41]

In 2013, Cheltenham was named one of the safest towns for university students to live in the UK by the Complete University Guide.[44]

According to 2010 estimates from the Office for National Statistics, Cheltenham's population is 115,300, ranked 186th out of 326 English districts based on population, with a population density of 6,410 people per square mile (2,473/km2), placing it 72 out of 326 English districts based on population density. Inhabitants of Cheltenham are known as "Cheltonians".

Cheltenham lies beneath Cleeve Hill, the highest point in the Cotswolds and above the vale of the River Severn. It is known as 'The Western Gateway to the Cotswolds'. The village of Broadway being known as 'The Northern Gateway to the Cotswolds'.

Cheltenham hosts the annual Cheltenham Music Festival, Cheltenham Jazz Festival and the Ukulele Festival of Great Britain.

In the Domesday book the name of Cheltenham is spelt "Chilteham" and "Ciltenham".

In rugby league university side Gloucestershire All Golds were admitted into the semi-professional Championship 1. The Cheltenham Rugby Festival is a rugby league nines event held in May.

Cheltenham has four theatres: the Everyman, the Playhouse, the Bacon and the Parabola Arts Centre.

The first parish church is Cheltenham Minster, St Mary's, which is the only surviving medieval building in the town. As a result of expansion of the population, absorption of surrounding villages, and the efforts of both evangelical and Anglo-Catholic missions, the town has a large number of other parish churches,[citation needed] including Trinity Church and All Saints', Pittville, where the composer Gustav Holst's father was the organist.

Cheltenham

Although, as with many sites of Churches, origins go back further than the present church, in fact worship here dates back to  the 8th Century, the present building has parts that date back to Norman times.

SuperGroup plc, owner of the Superdry label, have their headquarters in Cheltenham.

Cheltenham Borough Council Municipal Offices Promenade Cheltenham GL50 9SA

The centrepiece is the Montpellier Gardens, blooming with flowers and containing a fountain surmounted by a bespectacled Gustav Holst, who was born in Cheltenham and now stands with his baton raised aloft above the water jets.

Extreme endurance adventurer Sean Conway lives in Cheltenham and is the first and only man in history to swim the length of Britain in 2013 from Land’s End to John O’Groats across 900 miles. He has previously cycled the length of Britain (1300 miles) and plans to finish his Great British Triathlon in 2014 when he will run the length of Britain. Web: www.seanconway.com.

The Cheltenham Art Gallery & Museum, also called The Wilson, hosts a programme of art exhibitions running throughout the year.

The oldest school in Cheltenham is Pate's Grammar School (founded in 1574).[45] Cheltenham College (founded in 1841) was the first of the public schools of the Victorian period.[46] The school was the setting in 1968 for the classic Lindsay Anderson film if.....[47] It also hosts the annual Cheltenham Cricket Festival, first staged in 1872, and the oldest cricket festival in the world.[48]

Cheltenham's success as a spa town is reflected in the railway station, which is still called Cheltenham Spa, and spa facilities in other towns that were inspired by or named after it.[12]

The unemployment rate in Cheltenham was 2.7%[30] in 2010 compared to the UK national unemployment level of 7.9%.[31] The average GVA per head in Cheltenham was £21,947.27 in 2011[30] compared to the national average of £26,200.[32]

Cheltenham is on the edge of the Cotswolds, an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in the South-West region of England. The small River Chelt flows under and through the town.

The popularity of these events has given rise to a new breed of trendy boutiques and restaurants making Cheltenham an excellent place for a weekend break at any time of the year.