Flounders Folly

Today we visited Flounders’ Folly, an imposing stone tower, 16 foot square, standing 80 feet above Callow Hill, near Craven Arms, South Shropshire. The Folly is a landmark that is visible for miles around and in particular from the A49 between Church Stretton and Craven Arms. Built in 1838 by Benjamin Flounders (hence the name), it marks the point at which three parishes and four major estates meet. Curiously, Benjamin Flounders never had a house on the Culmington estate and generally chose to stay at the Angel Inn in Broad Street, Ludlow on his twice-yearly visits to Shropshire. The Folly fell into disrepair in the 20th century but was restored in 2004-5 by the Flounders’ Folly Trust. It is now open to the public one day each month so people can climb to the viewing platform at the top of the 78 stairs and enjoy the wonderful views of the Malverns, the Black Mountains, Cader Idris and much much more. Specially commissioned illustrations that run round the viewing platform enable visitors to work out exactly what landmarks they are looking at in the landscape.
It is quite a climb from the road but well worth the effort as the views from the top of the tower are spectacular! We were pleased to pick out Titterstone Clee, Brown Clee, the Wrekin and the Long Mynd. Please visit the website to check if the tower is open as it would be disappointing to arrive and find it closed! Generally it is open on the last Sunday of the month (if the flag of St George is flying it means the tower is open!).