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Churches

Churches

An effigy in the chancel of Westwell Church

Churches

The great wealth of local, medieval wool merchants paid for many of the churches in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds and many of their spires dominate the skyline for miles around. Burford’s church is particularly fine with a number of fascinating monuments, including some 1649 graffiti on its lead font.

There are a number of famous burials in Oxfordshire Cotswolds churches, including Sir Winston Churchill’s grave at Bladon, William Morris' at Kelmscott and four of the Mitford sisters at SwinbrookBampton’s St Mary’s Church has become famous as the church in Downton Abbey where the wedding of Mary Crawley took place. Other churches have ornate tombs, medieval brasses, wall paintings or, like the church at Widford, a stunning location as well.

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Japanese Cherry Blossom at Batsford Arboretum

Batsford Arboretum & Garden Centre

Batsford Arboretum is home to one of the country’s largest private tree collections. Enjoy early colour from snowdrops, spring-flowering bulbs and...

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Number of items: 51

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  1. St Marys Church North Leigh - photo courtesy of Oxfordshire Churches & Chapels

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    North Leigh - St Mary's Church

    Type

    Church / Chapel

    North Leigh

    An architecturally fascinating church: the church is late Anglo-Saxon in origin with the bell tower probably built in the first half of the 11th century; in the latter part of the 12th century the Saxon nave was abandoned and its arch in the west wall of the tower was blocked up. A new nave was...

  2. St Mary the Virgin Church in Charlbury

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    Charlbury - St Mary the Virgin Church

    Type

    Church / Chapel

    Charlbury

    Parts of the present building date from the 12th century, though a Saxon church may have existed here. From 1094 until the Dissolution of the Monasteries under Henry VIII, all appointments to the living of Charlbury were made by the Abbey of Eynsham. From 1296 the Abbey received the main tithes of...

  3. Holy Trinity Church in Ascott under Wychwood

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    Ascott-under-Wychwood - Holy Trinity Church

    Type

    Church / Chapel

    Ascott-under-Wychwood

    Holy Trinity is set in the heart of the beautiful village of Ascott-under-Wychwood. It abounds with fascinating historical features and has been the centre of worship in the village for some 900 years.

    It mainly dates from the 12th century and is quite small and simple, set in a picturesque...

  4. St George's Church in Kencot (©Derek Cotterill)

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    Kencot - St George's Church

    Type

    Church / Chapel

    Kencot

    St George's Church in Kencot is of late 12th century origin and features a tower with a curious side turret with a sloping roof, which was added later and makes it look unfinished.

    The inner south doorway is a fine example of late Norman design and the area under the arch (the tympanum) has a...

  5. St Mary's Church in Swinbrook

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    Swinbrook - St Mary's Church

    Type

    Church / Chapel

    Swinbrook

    Set in the Windrush Valley, St Mary's church is 12th century with early enlargements and a tower tacked on in 1822 – a recent ‘afterthought’. It is full of interest and light, the clear glass windows illuminating both the architecture and some amazing monuments to the Fettiplace family – six...

  6. St Peter's Broughton Poggs cDerek Cotterill

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    Broughton Poggs - St Peter's Church

    Type

    Church / Chapel

    Broughton Poggs

    St Peter’s, Broughton Poggs, is situated in a farmyard, although many of the former barns on the north side have been converted into modern dwellings. The building is basically Norman but there is a suggestion that the tower might be Saxon.

    The nave is 12th century so this section was probably...

  7. Broadwell Church cDerek Cotterill

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    Broadwell - St Peter & St Paul's Church

    Type

    Church / Chapel

    Broadwell

    This large medieval cruciform church, with a north and south transept, dates back to the 12th to 14th centuries and reflects the importance of Broadwell (or Bradwell) at that time. Nowadays it stands in a small village of a few houses, with another small village, Kencot, just beyond the eastern...

  8. St Nicholas Church, Idbury

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    Idbury - St Nicholas Church

    Type

    Church / Chapel

    Idbury

    Mainly 15th century in character, but with a fine reset 12th century Norman north doorway with chevrons and saltire crosses in the arch, the church has a peaceful, uncluttered interior with a fine 15th century font. In the graveyard look out for the grave of Sir Benjamin Baker, the designer of the...

  9. Heythrop - St Nicholas' Church

    Heythrop - St Nicholas' Church

    Type

    Church / Chapel

    Chadlington, Chipping Norton

    Heythrop has two churches. The main church was built in the 1870s, using local stone, by Albert Brassey, who owned Heythrop Park. It is typical of the Victorian gothic style and is in good order. It has three bells but these are only able to be chimed. As the only public building in the parish it...

  10. St Mary's Church in Holwell (photo courtesy of Derek Cotterill)

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    Holwell - St Mary's Church

    Type

    Church / Chapel

    Holwell

    Built in 1895 to replace an earlier church and medieval chapel of ease. Although some brick and some stone from the earlier church was re-used, all the woodwork was sawn up and given to the poor as firewood or burnt on a bonfire. Thankfully some Flemish panels, which can be seen in the pulpit,...

  11. St Nicholas Church, Asthall

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    Asthall - St Nicholas Church

    Type

    Church / Chapel

    Asthall

    A 12th century church in the Windrush Valley, with a 14th century transept converted into a chantry chapel. This has a very rare small 14th century altar with a built-in piscina, two reliquaries and a huge tomb recess housing a delicately carved effigy of the Lady Joan Cornwall in a wimple. Rare...

  12. St Mary the Virgin Chipping Norton

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    Chipping Norton - St Mary the Virgin Church

    Type

    Church / Chapel

    Chipping Norton

    A wool church and Grade I listed building, St Mary the Virgin is tucked away near the bottom of the hill on which the town sits. The setting seems incongruous, however it is here in the shadow of the church, and what was once the castle, that the settlement was originally concentrated. In the early...

  13. St James Church Fulbrook

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    Fulbrook - St James the Great Church

    Type

    Church / Chapel

    Fulbrook

    St James the Great Church is a fine example of a Norman church that managed to escape overly enthusiastic Victorian restoration. The north aisle was added about 1200 and the porch in the late 13th century. This fine building containing memorials to several 17th century families (including a lovely...

  14. All Saints Church in Churchill - photo courtesy of www.oxfordshirechurches.info

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    Churchill - All Saints Church

    Type

    Church / Chapel

    Churchill

    Built in 1826, All Saints has a west tower that is a slimmer version of the tower of Magdalen College in Oxford (reduced by a third in size) and inside is a hammerbeam roof copied from the hall of Christ Church in Oxford. Otherwise the church is typically Georgian with a broad nave, narrow isles...

  15. St James the Great Church in South Leigh

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    South Leigh - St James the Great Church

    Type

    Church / Chapel

    South Leigh

    There has been a church here since Norman times, although most of the existing church is late 15th century there is a Norman doorway in the south wall. The church is full of interest with several fine medieval wall paintings: the Virgin and St Michael (on the south wall), a lively Last Judgement...

  16. St Mary Magdalene Church in Woodstock, Oxfordshire

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    Woodstock - St Mary Magdalene Church

    Type

    Church / Chapel

    Woodstock

    St Mary Magdalene Church was built in the reign of Henry I for the convenience of the court during royal visits to the royal hunting lodge of Woodstock Manor - the main parish church was (and remained for centuries) at St Martin's Church in Bladon, for which St Mary Magdalene was a chapel at ease...

  17. St Kenelm's church in Minster Lovell near Witney

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    Minster Lovell - St Kenelm's Church

    Type

    Church / Chapel

    Minster Lovell

    St Kenelm's Church in Minster Lovell is mainly 15th century, built on the foundations of an earlier priory minster. This explains the unusual cruciform shape with a central tower. The whole church is “almost entirely unaltered and has handsome details” (Pevsner). It is situated next to the ruins of...

  18. St Margaret's Church in Little Faringdon (photo courtesy of www.oxfordshirechurches.info)

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    Little Faringdon - St Margaret's Church

    Type

    Church / Chapel

    Little Faringdon

    A small, picturesque church dating back to the 12th century but with a little 19th century bellcote. There are a few pieces of medieval glass.

  19. All Saints Church in Shorthampton - photo courtesy of Oxfordshire Churches

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    Shorthampton - All Saints Church

    Type

    Church / Chapel

    Shorthampton

    The hamlet of Shorthampton consists of little more than a farm and the church. The church has an unusual, boxlike appearance: no tower or spire, shallow roofs and square headed windows. Inside there are a number of unusual features but what immediately catches the eye is the wall paintings. Though...

  20. Leafield Church

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    Leafield - St Michael and All Angels Church

    Type

    Church / Chapel

    Leafield

    Designed in 1859 by Sir George Gilbert Scott, St Michael and All Angels was consecrated in 1860, although the spire, a distinctive feature on the horizon for many miles around, was not completed until 1874.