Profile updated 17/07/19
Heart of England
Have you ever wondered where Ghandi got his glasses, who beat the French to a bottle of bubbly, why perfectly sensible people risk life and limb to chase cheese down a hill, and how shin-kicking became an olympic sport. I'm a bright, informative and entertaining Blue Badge tour guide for the Heart of England with an eye for the unusual and a knack for storytelling. An ex journalist, I have spent my life telling stories. I'm confident with guiding both on coaches and on foot, and have an excellent knowledge of the area, its history, folklore and many bizarre customs. But it is the people and their stories that really bring the Cotswolds to life. Let me introduce you to those who made a mark on the world (in music, literature, champagne, the lawnmower) and the muffin men, cider makers, mill owners, pioneers and inventors that lived in this unique corner of England.
London born and bred, but based in Stroud for 16 years, I'm particularly familiar with Gloucestershire and the Cotswolds. I also have a good knowledge of Shropshire, Herefordshire, Worcestershire, Staffordshire, Oxfordshire (and Oxford itself in particular), Birmingham, the West Midlands, Coventry, Warwick and Stratford on Avon, as well as key figures from the areas's history, like Churchill and Shakespeare
I have a particular interest and expertise in the industrial and social history of the area; the wool and cloth industry, epitomised by the great wool churches such as at Chipping Campden and Fairford; and the transformation of Britain during the industrial revolution, fuelled by the iron and coal industry, particularly at Ironbridge Gorge, the silicon valley of the Victorian age. I'm also very familiar with the area's rich Civil War history; The regency spa towns such as Cheltenham and Leamington Spa; and the great Cathedral towns of Gloucester and Coventry.
Other areas of expertise include myths and folklore. I also have an insight into the Jewish heritage of the area, particularly in Oxford and Gloucester
Some nice things people have said about me
Dear Steve. Thank you for your guiding. We had a great time with you . It was intertesting and I like Oxford very much. I will definitely recommend you to my colleagues. Ashley, group leader, Singapore.
'Steve Roth was our tour guide for our full day tour of Stratford-upon-Avon and Oxford. He gave my group of 40 Canadians a great tour with lots of useful and interesting information and was really good with his timings.' Paul Mukerji (Explorica Tour Director) July 2019
|Myths and Folklore|
|The English spa towns|
|Politics and social change|
|People: Extraordinary and ordinary lives|
|Folklore & Traditions|
|Churches & Cathedrals|
|Politics & Government|
|Food & Drink|
|Castles & Palaces|