The history of Cheltenham dates back hundreds of years, with the area’s first monastery having been built as early as the 9th century. 

By the 1400’s the city had begun developing, gaining some recognition and fame for its great markets and fairs.  But it wasn’t until the early 18th century that Cheltenham became an often-visited city.  It was in 1716 that the town’s natural springs were discovered, whose waters seemed to have a very therapeutic quality to them.  It didn’t take long before the news spread, and within a couple of decades, spas in the city began being built. 

By the 1780’s Cheltenham had transitioned to a spa resort city, visited by important people such as Samuel Johnson (a famous author) and King George III.  The economy was booming because of the influx of tourism, and the city began developing more and more.  Eventually the fame and popularity of the spas began to decline, and so did the city’s tourism. 

Cheltenham managed to regain most of the lost revenue generated by tourism, by focusing on fine quality crafts. 

It was after World War II that Cheltenham was selected as the site of the Governments Communication Headquarters (an important surveillance center). 

Today, the city is again seeing an increase in tourism, but it no longer depends solely on visitors to generate revenue.