Officially established in the year 1205, the quaint town of Thrapston received its charter from a trade involving two riding horses. Much of Thraptson has remained relatively unchanged throughout its history and gives visitors the chance to feel as though they are stepping back through time.
Each summer, Thrapston hosts an elaborate charter fair in honour of the town’s founding. Festivities in the streets provide entertainment for all attendees. Food, music and other live performances help create a celebratory atmosphere that adds even more excitement to the summer season.
The Church of St. James is listed as a Grade II historical building and considered to be a focal landmark in the town. The church’s current building dates back to the 13th century, but much of the structure seen today was reconstructed in the 19th century. Beautiful stained-glass windows show depictions of important religious figures. Other notable features of the church include a limestone ashlar nave and a series of marble tablets with inscriptions.
There are certain areas in and around the town that are ideal for outdoor activities. The rolling hills that surround Thrapston provide excellent conditions for hiking and cycling. A scenic stroll can be taken around the Thrapston-Islip walk to see birds and other charming animals that are indigenous to the area. Many people consider Lake Elenor to be one of the best local fishing spots.
Just a quick trip outside of town leads to the Rockingham Castle and Gardens. The castle’s construction was commissioned by William the Conqueror in the 11th century. After more than 400 years in existence, Henry VII abandoned the castle in 1485 before the Watson family eventually took ownership. Today, the castle can be toured by guests who want to learn more about its royal history. Extensive gardens surrounding the castle create a setting reminiscent of a fairytale.
Another popular attraction that is located just beyond the town’s centre is Stanwick Lakes. This family-friendly fun spot allows children to enjoy water play and even has its own small steam and water wheels. Children also have access to a sand play area as well as a large slide and climbing tower. In addition to the outdoor area, Stanwick Lakes features the nautical-inspired Hideaway indoor play facility.
One of the best places to go shopping in Thrapston is the Rushden Lakes Shopping Centre. Stores here sell everything from big-brand fashions to merchandise from local independent businesses. Shoppers can also grab a bite to eat at one of the on-site eateries while on the go. The Rushden Lakes Shopping Centre sits adjacent to the Nene Wetlands and offers easy access to walking and cycling trails.