We drove via more of the pretty Cotswold villages and found ourselves in Chipping Norton, which is gorgeous. On the way into town we came across the most extraordinary building with a giant stack attached to it. On further investigation we learned that it was formerly Bliss Tweed Mill. It's a striking building with the most enormous chimney stack atop a dome (sort of looks like a plunger) but the building itself is magnificent and has apparently been converted into apartments since the closure of the mill in 1980. It would be a landmark building to call home.
I knew Winston Churchill had been born at the palace but hadn't registered that his grandparents were the Duke and Duchess. I stood at the top of the gardens imagining what it would have been like to have the run of the palace during the school holidays, when young Winston was a frequent visitor. There is a very interesting Winston Churchill archive in the house and access to the foyer, State Rooms, dining room, library and chapel as well as the grounds. Unfortunately it was extremely chilly and started to rain so our visit to the gardens was short. However, Blenheim currently have a deal where you can convert your one day pass into one year - so we did that and hope to make it back again before the 23rd November 2014.
I suspect the glasses were added more recently than the carving was done!