News index


Charlbury Beer Festival: Grants update

Thanks to our successful Oktoberfest in the Memorial Hall, Charlbury Beer Festival is delighted to announce that we now have money available to distribute as community grants. From 1 December, local organisations can apply for funds via our new online procedure found at:

You will need to supply details of audited accounts and clear description including quotations and / or budget, of the grant required, as well as any additional support information. The more relevant information we receive, the faster we can assess any application.

Nick Millea · Tue 30 Nov, 11:34 · Link

Latest planning applications to West Oxfordshire District Council

The following planning applications have recently been lodged. Click on the address to see full details at the WODC website.

Mon 29 Nov, 06:15 · Link

Vacancy for a new Trustee on the Thomas Gifford Trust

The Thomas Gifford Trust is a charity which owns and manages the Charlbury Community Centre and also the Playing Close. There is presently a vacancy for a trustee, and we'd like to hear from you if you might be interested. The trustees meet every 2 months (on a Wednesday evening), but as a team are involved, with others, in the management and day to day running of the Community Centre. It is a friendly and committed team and amongst the existing trustees there is a wide range of skills and experience. For the new trustee we are not looking for any particular skill set, but it would be good to have someone who uses and knows the Community Centre. If you are interested or would like to know more about what might be involved, please contact Tanya:

Information about the Trust and the other trustees can be found here

Charlbury Community Centre · Sat 27 Nov, 12:29 · Link

CRAG's response to this week's awful tragedy in the Channel

This week’s awful tragedy, the biggest loss of life by drowning in the Channel in years, has highlighted the plight of refugees trying to get to the UK.

We've suggested some things you can do about this situation on the CRAG webpage as well as a details of our latest fundraising campaign (if you'd like to donate you can go straight to the donation page). 

Thank you.

Vicky Buser · Sat 27 Nov, 09:15 · Link

The History of Charlbury through .... the Salt Way

Judy Dod for Charlbury Museum

In modern Britain, salt is readily available and very cheap to buy, while we are encouraged to limit our salt intake for health reasons. Yet in the past salt was an extremely valuable commodity which was highly prized and helped shape society. Salt improved flavour in cooking and enabled food to be preserved The name of the Salt Way, a long-distance path which runs close to Charlbury, is a reminder of its importance.

Salt was transported long distances and inspired some of the earliest trade routes. Droitwich was an early centre of salt production. Under the Romans its name was Salinae. Underneath the town are natural salt springs arising from pure beds of rock salt deep underground. The very pure salt that was extracted was highly prized and led to the formation of trade routes which radiated out from the town. The Salt Way that passes close to Charlbury is one of these.

The Salt Way can be accessed via Hundley Way, the Ditchley Road or along the footpath by Dustfield Farm. In one direction the track heads north towards Chipping Norton and then on through Gloucestershire and Warwickshire to Droitwich, while in the other direction it goes to Stonesfield and on to join Akeman Street. Salt was carried by pack horses and also transported by river. The Thames offered a good route to London which required huge quantities of salt for its growing population.

Before the Norman Conquest, various charters refer to salt streets, salters and fords (Salford is spelt Salteford in an Anglo-Saxon charter). The Domesday book names 68 manors which had the right to receive a certain amount of salt, including Rollright and Bampton in Oxfordshire.

Salt provided a valuable source of taxation for governments. In medieval times, the Droitwich salt springs belonged to the king and the town was charged an annual rent for using them. Roman soldiers were given an allowance of salt called a ‘salarium’ from which our word ‘salary’ derives. In 1930 Gandhi led a non-violent protest against the British salt monopoly in India and began the process which led to the overthrow of British rule in India.

The Salt Way today is a pleasant, quiet track, much used by walkers and cyclists. The next time you walk there, remember the pack horses who carried their valuable cargo along it for so many centuries.

Thursday 2nd December Charlbury Society members talk on Zoom 7.50 for 8pm

Dr Janice Kinory: The Production, Distribution and Usage of Salt in prehistoric Britain

To join the Society email

Judy Dod · Fri 26 Nov, 20:50 · Link

Grants for community facilities: for all community groups

Forwarded for all groups with projects that might benefit from funding.  Deadline is next week though!

Grants of up to £100,000 Available for Community Facilities (England)

Registered Charities, churches, Parish Councils, Local Authorities and CASC registered sports clubs can apply for grants of between £2,000 and £100,000 for the provision, maintenance or improvement of community facilities.

This can include:

Village Halls and Community Centres;

Public Play Areas;

Publicly available Multi use games areas;

Skate parks and BMX tracks;

Sport and recreation grounds including pavilions and clubhouses with full public access;

Churches – community spaces only;

Nature Reserves;

Public gardens, parks, country parks and woodlands with at least dawn to dusk access;


The funding is being made available through the FCC Community Action Fund and is available to projects located within 10 miles of an eligible FCC Environment site.

Round 4 of the Community Action Fund will open for applications on the 15th September 2021 and close at 5 pm on the 1st December 2021.

The application form is available on the FCC Community Foundation website (link below)

Useful Links:

Application Guidelines

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Gareth Epps · Fri 26 Nov, 13:23 · Link

St Mary's Choir to sing first performance of a work for 100+ years

This Sunday, the choir of St Mary’s Church will be singing a work which has lain undiscovered for over a century.

The Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis in C by Lizzie Wheeler is believed to be the first setting of the evening canticles by a woman composer, written in 1872. It was reviewed very favourably in the Musical Times and Daily Express of the time, and sung in St Patrick’s Cathedral, Dublin. But it was never republished after the first edition, and there is no record of it being sung in the 20th (or 21st!) centuries. Now, rediscovered from an archive copy in the British Library, it will be sung in Charlbury, for the first time in many years.

The canticles will be sung as part of Choral Evensong at 4pm at St Mary’s. Other music in the service, which lasts around one hour, includes Richard Ayleward’s Preces and Responses, and ‘Maranatha’ by David Ogden. All are welcome.

Richard Fairhurst · Fri 26 Nov, 09:32 · Link

Christmas Trees at St Mary's

We still have trees to sell. Please buy and decorate a one for your family, charity or organisation. If you haven't got time to decorate one, please consider buying one to support St Mary's church this Christmas and we will put lights on it for you. We want the churchyard to look as full and amazing as possible, but we need to have the trees there for it to look beautiful.

Further information from

Elisabeth Partington · Thu 25 Nov, 21:52 · Link

Reverse Advent Calendar - A way of bringing Christmas hope to homeless people in Oxford.

You are invited to join Churches Together in Charlbury in making a reverse advent calendar. 

Wrap a box in Christmas paper and every day of Advent place an item into the box.

The list of 24 useful items to include is also available from St Marys Church and Cornerstone. 

Bring your filled box to St Mary’s Church or the Cornerstone at the Corner House between Christmas Eve and the middle of January and they will be delivered to the Porch in Oxford. 

For more information email 

Many thanks

Jo Paton · Wed 24 Nov, 11:06 · Link

Blithe Spirit opens this Thursday / Friday & Saturday

CADs are back on stage with " Blithe Spirit " by Noel Coward, directed by Sue Haffenden

25th, 26th & 27th November curtain up at 7.30pm.

At the Memorial Hall, Charlbury

Tickets: £10 to include programme, Concessions £7.50.

Available from Cotswold Frames, Charlbury or on the door subject to availability.

Please pay by cash/cheque with exact money. Bar opens 7pm.

( Social distancing observed and masks to be worn until seated)

Tim at Cotswold Frames · Wed 24 Nov, 10:29 · Link

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