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The History of Charlbury through ... the card index for the parish church registers

Barbara Allison for Charlbury Museum

Are you old enough to remember card index systems for collecting and filing a lot of information? Or so young you don’t know what they are? These seem very last century now, don’t they, overtaken by information stored on the internet. The museum still has a lovely set of index cards, stored in 4 boxes, which record the entries in the parish registers of baptisms, marriages and burials, arranged by families. Here is an example of the card for the marriages of the Clifford family –a long-standing Charlbury family, as you can see from the first dates of 1603 and 1730.

At the bottom of the card, the occupations of both Martha Clifford, a gloveress, and her brother David Price Clifford, a tailor, are recorded. There wasn’t room on the card to write Martha’s husband’s occupation, he was a leather-dresser, but David’s wife didn’t have one, according to the register. For about 30 years, from 1838 to 1868 or so, the marriage register has the occupations of women - one of the few sources of women’s occupations here in Charlbury in Victorian England.

Another example is the card recording Philip Dance’s marriage to Lydia Berry in 1822. Below this has been written ‘gave name to Dance’s Hill’ or what we now call Dancers Hill. Why was that? Philip Dance was a glover from Tewkesbury, and one of those persuaded by William Albright to come to Charlbury to ‘revive the gloving industry’ in the 1800s. By 1820, he owned one of the houses on Knaves Knoll, which overlooked the site of the ‘glovers pits’ first recorded in 1736 and later called the Tannery on the 1880 OS map. The site is now Tanners Court. He had his 4 children baptised in the town, but by 1841, he had moved with his family to Cheltenham.

We would love to know more about these cards: there are 100s of them, all written in a neat and clear hand. The transcription of the Charlbury registers was undertaken (by Vera Wood) and published by the Oxfordshire Family History Society in 2001. These cards may well have been made before then, perhaps from the actual registers themselves? Do contact us at the museum if you can tell us more.

And when was the hill between the bottom of Pooles Lane and the Slade named Dancers Hill, and by whom?

Judy Dod · Fri 30 Apr, 20:46 · Link


Upcoming Gigaclear road closures

Gigaclear have provided the following dates for road closures:

Details are subject to change.

Fri 30 Apr, 15:52 · Link


Neighbourhood Plan Referendum Update

The referendum version of the Charlbury Neighbourhood Plan is now available to download and view on the West Oxfordshire District Council website at www.westoxon.gov.uk/charlbury along with other referendum information.

Paper copies are also available for you to view at the Charlbury Community Centre during their normal opening hours - just ask at the reception desk.  Please note that these copies can ONLY be viewed at the community centre and cannot be taken away.

The Neighbourhood Plan referendum will be held on Thursday 10th June 2021 and all electors within the parish of Charlbury will be eligible to vote.  If a majority vote in favour of the Charlbury Neighbourhood Plan, it will be used to inform decisions on planning applications within the Charlbury Parish.

Please use your vote!

Peter Kenrick · Thu 29 Apr, 12:09 · Link


National Trust Visits Your House

A(nother) Zoom Supper with Special Guest

• Make plans to join us Saturday 8 May at 730 PM to support St Mary’s and its community initiatives.

• Enjoy an interactive session with Christian Walker, The National Trust’s General Manager for West Oxfordshire Estates, who will share photographs and tales of their properties in the area.

• Leave the cooking to COOK (www.cookfood.net) select from:

o Coq au Vin with creamy mash

o Salmon & Asparagus Gratin with peas and leeks

o Portobello Mushroom Risotto with peas and leeks

Tickets are £12 per person.

Send your payment to

Account Name: Charlbury PCC

Sort Code: 40-52-40

Account Number: 00032374

Reference: Zoom Supper

Email Dine Glasgow (dglasgow@theridgegroup.com) to select a meal, get your Zoom link or ask a question.

Portal opens at 7:00 pm, and the event will start at 7:30 pm.

daniela jenkins · Tue 27 Apr, 10:25 · Link


Help with parking whilst Thames Street is closed

We are proposing from THIS MOMENT to allow all Charlbury residents in the proximity of Dyers Hill and Market street to park in the overflow area of the cricket club whilst the works to Thames street are carried out. We do need formal consent from Cornbury estate but we will discuss this with them tomorrow but the gate will now remain open with immediate effect to hopefully create some space in the area.

Paul D Jenkins · Mon 26 Apr, 18:13 · Link


An exciting new job opportunity at Ditchley

The Ditchley Foundation (ditchley.com) is recruiting a new chief operating officer.

Over the last four years, Ditchley has successfully transformed itself into a leading 21st century organisation, whilst remaining true to its heritage and values. The next four years should see a further step change in Ditchley’s reach, profile and financial resources. The chief operating officer will have the skills and experience to work closely with the director (CEO) to take Ditchley to the next level of impact, profile, efficiency and financial sustainability, whilst safeguarding and improving grade one listed Ditchley Park as a national treasure set in historic parkland and gardens.

Salary: £50,000 to £60,000 depending on experience and qualifications plus high quality service accommodation and ten percent pension contribution.

A fuller description of the role is attached

To apply please write to: directorspa@ditchley.com, making the subject of your covering email, COO Role Application, and your name.

Please attach to your email a letter explaining in no more than two sides of A4 why your skills and experience fit you for this role, why you would like to work with Ditchley and what you would aim to achieve

Please also attach your CV giving details of your relevant skills, qualities, experience, expertise and qualifications.

Applications should be submitted by 7 May to be considered. The selection process will run over the rest of May. The target start date for the new role is 1 September 2021.

Katie Williams · Mon 26 Apr, 12:34 · 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.

  • Doggetts Thames Street Charlbury
    Discharge of condition 4 (details of all external windows and doors) of planning permission 20/01199/HHD
    WODC reference: 21/01380/CND - Thu 15 Apr 2021 - Under consideration
  • Linwall Sturt Road Charlbury
    The proposal is to remove and reconstructed the roof with a pitch increased from 32 deg to 41deg raising the ridge by 800mm. the application is a slight alterations to a previous application - 20/02483/HHD, approved 13th November 2020.
    WODC reference: 21/00893/HHD - Mon 15 Mar 2021 - Under consideration
  • The Rise Hixet Wood Charlbury
    Construction of replacement single-storey detached outbuilding.
    WODC reference: 21/00849/HHD - Fri 12 Mar 2021 - Under consideration

Mon 26 Apr, 06:15 · Link


The History of Charlbury through .... the gift of a 17th century lady

Ann Lovett for Charlbury Museum

On 7th January 1631 James Walker, yeoman, of Charlbury wrote his will. It was much concerned with his wife, Anne, and their as yet unborn first child, and how they would be provided for. He and Anne Eyans had married in 1629. Sadly James died shortly after he made the will - Charlbury Parish Records (CPR) record his burial on the 18th February 1631. Two months later there is another entry recording the baptism of his daughter Anne on 17th April.

Very little is known about their daughter Anne after her baptism. Her mother married William Pitchford, a London haberdasher, in 1640. Pitchford is thought to have been Master of the Guild of Haberdashers at some stage. He had premises in Cheapside, and later lived in Hampstead. It would be a natural assumption that 9 year old Anne moved to London with her mother.

Her grandfathers, Edward Walker of Ratley, Warwickshire and Richard Eyans of Charlbury, both left her £5 in their wills of 1640 and 1653. Also, in the will of her stepfather William Pitchford in 1659……. I give my wife’s daughter Anne Walker 20 nobles* for mourning and £10…

On 20th March 1660 Anne wrote her will. There is no record of her death but probate was granted in 1667 for Anne Walker spinster of London.

She says “ Charlbury is Greate and full of poore Inhabitants who by reason of their greate poverty are not able to maintaine and educate their Children at school ”. So she settled her lands at Shotteswell, Warwickshire and Cropredy, Oxfordshire, left her by her father, on Brasenose College Oxford, to oversee a school in Charlbury and appoint a schoolmaster, to be paid £40 a year. Brasenose were also to provide a grant of £5 a year to 2 students, preferably from Charlbury, whilst at Brasenose. She wished her mother and uncle, another Richard Eyans, to ensure the renovation of the school. In 1675 the free school for boys, with accommodation for the schoolmaster, opened in what is now the Manor House and Sunnyside in Church Street.

In later years with the building dilapidated, Brasenose built new schoolrooms at what became Grammar School Hill. The Grammar School was open by 1837. It eventually closed in 1902 and by 1911 Charlbury Exhibition Foundation was formed. A legacy from (uncle) Richard Eyans , a piece of land in Charlbury known as Poor Boys Close, was included in the Foundation which still awards grants to Charlbury’s young people in apprenticeship schemes and in tertiary education.

So the legacy of a lady, born in Charlbury in 1631, who lived through the English Civil War, the Commonwealth, Restoration of Charles the second, the Great Plague and possibly the Great Fire of London continues to provide some educational needs today.

* A coin introduced under Edward III, originally worth 6s 8d. Mentioned in Shakespeare’s plays, they had gone out of use long before 1659.

Judy Dod · Fri 23 Apr, 19:51 · Link


Work at Nine Acres Recreation field

Over the next few months the Nine Acres Committee with assistance from the football club will be carrying out urgent pitch repairs including seeding, fertilization and easing compaction of the ground for sport. Today sees the installation of a rustic barrier that will be used to keep people off this area whilst the works are in progress. We are focusing on the 11 v 11 pitch at the moment but over the next year, will then move onto the junior pitch and top "hockey" pitch. There are also exciting plans under consideration to install a MUGA area, upgrade the play-area, create a trail running track and outdoor gym!! It all takes time and money but if you want to get involved please contact the chairman Paul Jenkins 07786 274234 and make a difference!!

Paul D Jenkins · Fri 23 Apr, 08:54 · Link


Set up your weekend in style at the cricket club....

Youth training commences at Charlbury Cricket Club for U9 to U17 ages groups from 6.30 pm on Friday 23rd April. All welcome. The all-stars and dynamo sessions start on 7th May.

Hospitality will be open by table service for 96 people with " Copper Pot " supplying a full menu from 23rd and every Friday night. Hospitality opening times are 6.00 pm -9.00pm  this Friday. Full details can be found at charlburycricketclub.com

Sun will be out, bar open, children entertained ... whats not to like .

Paul D Jenkins · Thu 22 Apr, 16:41 · Link


Charlbury Medical Centre Patient Group

To all Charlbury Medical Centre patients

You’ve  told us how much you appreciate the efficient running of the vaccine clinics, so we’d like you to take a moment to read the attached newsletter which we hope you will find informative. It is important to know how your cardiovascular system works and what you can do to reduce risks of developing problems.

 If you would like to receive  our quarterly Newsletters  by email together with other news of the CMC, and influence how the Practice is run, please do join the patient group by emailing  patientgroup.charlbury@nhs.net . That’s all you have to do, but if you would like to be more involved , please let us know . We hope you will join us.

Thank you,

Charlbury Medical Centre Patient Group steering committee.

susan smith · Thu 22 Apr, 10:56 · Link


Charlbury Medical Centre: vaccine clinic news

We understand that the vaccine will now be available for clinics starting on Monday 26 th April for the second dose of AZ/ Oxford vaccine. 

The Practice have started to contact eligible people, normally by post, so please wait to hear when your appointment will be and do not phone to ask. 

You must bring your vaccination card given to you at your first dose, but there is no need to fill in another form . 

Nikki Rycroft · Mon 19 Apr, 20:49 · 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 19 Apr, 06:15 · Link


Charlbury Cricket Club Bar and Outdoor areas open tonight 6-8pm only

As a trial for our launch for the 2021 cricket season, the cricket club bar and outdoor seating area will be open tonight between 6 and 8 pm with all members of the community welcome to pop down and check out our facilities. The clubhouse will remain closed except for access to the toilets, All drinks will be served by way of table service and groups are restricted to 6 or two household groups. Please sign in on the NHS app as you enter the ground. 

Paul D Jenkins · Sat 17 Apr, 07:43 · Link


The History of Charlbury through ... schoolrooms all over town 1945-58

Janet Jeffs for Charlbury Museum

In the late 1940s and early 1950s there were two schools in Charlbury - the Infants' School (for children 5/6 yrs old) on Grammar School Hill, and the County School on the Playing Close which took children from 7 to 10 yrs old, and - including those from Leafield, Finstock, Ramsden and Stonesfield - up to school leaving age (which from 1944 was 15 yrs). The head of the County School was Mr H.Osborne.

There was a post-war bulge in population, and a shortage of space. Several of us born around that time remember receiving our early education all over town. After the Infants School, we moved at the age of 6/7 to Fisher's Lane, upstairs in the Methodist Church School Room with little Mrs Wilson in Standard 1. (Big- taller - Mrs Wilson was based at the Playing Close School.)

As 8/9 year olds we were allowed into the Playing Close School with Mrs Lawson in Standard 2. Classrooms were scarce, so two temporary classrooms were built in the School Gardens in 1948. As 10/11 year olds we crossed Enstone Road to the School Gardens with Mrs Franklin for Standards 3 and 4. Other buildings co-opted as extra classrooms at other times were the Parish Room attached to the old Vicarage in Church Lane, and the Morris Room upstairs at the Corner House. School dinners were served in the School Canteen on the path between Sheep Street and the Playing Close. Playtimes were spent wherever possible.

After the age of 11, pupils either stayed at the County School or, if they passed the 11+ exam, they went to Chippy Grammar School. By 1955 plans were in hand to build a new Secondary Modern School in the School Gardens. The Infants School on Grammar School Hill closed in 1957, and the County School on the Playing Close became the Primary School for Infants and Juniors, with Tom Asbridge as the new head. And those two classrooms in the School Gardens? Eventually one vanished, and the other served as the Football Social Club till recently.

We will tell the story of the Spendlove secondary school in a later posting.

Judy Dod · Fri 16 Apr, 19:18 · Link


Gigaclear Thames Street closure

This map shows the diversions and road closure signs that will be in place while Gigaclear is working on Thames Street from April 26th. Apologies that it is a bit blurred

Liz Leffman · Fri 16 Apr, 10:50 · Link


Ringing for the Duke of Edinburgh

In line with guidance from the Central Council of Bell Ringers, the Charlbury ringers  intend to toll a single bell, half muffled, between 2:45 and 3 pm.  During this time the courtage will be making its way from the private chapel at Windsor to the west door of St Georges chapel. We will finish in time for the minutes silence at 3 pm.

Mike Summers · Wed 14 Apr, 18:37 · Link


Charlbury Canoe Club

The Canoe Club will commence its 2021 season on Sunday 18th April at 2.15pm and every sunday afternoon thereafter until October. Do come and join us at the clubhouse on Watery Lane - all necessary equipment provided. Children must be accompanied by a responsible adult. Please observe social distancing. Further info from Hugh on 810130

Hugh Belshaw · Tue 13 Apr, 17:41 · Link


Father Clive blesses the Rose & Crown on reopening

Pubs are now permitted to reopen outdoor seating, and Charlbury’s Catholic priest Fr Clive Dytor was on hand to bless the Rose & Crown when it reopened yesterday! He will be doing the same at the Bull when it reopens on Wednesday.

Tue 13 Apr, 11:25 · Link


Vigil for Sarah Everard

The rescheduled vigil will take place on Friday 16th April at 8pm on The Playing Close. April is Sexual Assault Awareness month and therefore it feels even more important to show solidarity for Sarah Everard, her family and her friends, and other women and girls who experience harassment, stalking and assault.

There will be a moment of silence at 8.15pm where we will light a candle or a torch and then all are welcome to tie a purple ribbon to the frontage of The Playing Close and the Fountain in memory of Sarah or anyone else who has been a victim or survivor of violence.

All are welcome to attend, including men and boys.

The vigil is for Sarah who was kidnapped and murdered trying to get home on the evening of March 3rd, but it is also for all women and girls who feel unsafe inside their homes, on our streets, at work and who face violence and harassment every day.

To keep everyone safe and to protect the NHS, please wear masks, stay in your bubble and socially distance. There will be hand sanitiser on every entrance and exit to The Playing Close as well as a QR code to scan if you have the NHS Test and Trace app, which I encourage you to turn on. There will be stewards present to keep everyone safe.

Charlbury Town Council, West Oxfordshire District Council and Thames Valley Police have all been consulted and have endorsed a respectful and peaceful vigil.

I would like to thank Nikki Rycroft from the Charlbury Medical Centre for organising the stewarding of the vigil and to Vicky Burton who has contributed the beautiful purple ribbon.

For those of you unable to attend to show support and solidarity in person, there are a number of organisations who you can donate to. There is the Oxford Sexual Abuse and Rape Crisis Centre (OSARCC) - https://www.osarcc.org.uk/donate/, Reducing the Risk, a domestic violence advisory service - https://reducingtherisk.org.uk/donations-and-fundraising/ and the Suzy Lamplugh Trust - https://www.suzylamplugh.org/fundraisers/remembering-sarah-everard.

For any questions or concerns about the vigil, please contact me by email: charlbury.vigil@gmail.com

Emily Algar · Mon 12 Apr, 12:59 · Link


Charlbury walked round the British coast!

We’ve made it!

 Keep Charlbury Active

The challenge, set by Charlbury Community Centre, was  to walk, run and cycle round the coast of mainland Britain by the time the Community Centre re-opens on 12th April. That’s   11,120 miles! We have now done 12,007 miles, so we’ve achieved our target, plus a bit. In fact 12,000 miles is half way round the world and would get us to Christchurch, New Zealand as the crow flies. Well done everybody, we were delighted by your response to this, and had no idea at the beginning whether this would be achievable. This has all been done since the beginning of this year. Amazing.

What’s more, on the way we have collected 150 bags of litter, weighing 476 kg!

Charlbury Community Centre · Mon 12 Apr, 08:26 · Link


Roads to Carterton via Burford are OK Monday morning

ATIC test run this morning shows the roads to Carterton via Burford are OK – now wet rather than slippery and mostly clear of snow/slush. Still worth taking it easy and leaving a bit of extra time to get there.

The Charlbury Medical Centre team are at the Health Centre ready to start the vaccinations. Please try to keep to your appointment time but the CMC can be flexible, if necessary – they have use of the Health Centre until 1.00 p.m.

Meryl Smith · Mon 12 Apr, 08:24 · 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.

  • 6 Dyers Hill Charlbury
    Alterations to replace the external stone staircase which serves the barn with a new timber staircase
    WODC reference: 21/01215/HHD - Thu 01 Apr 2021 - Under consideration
  • 6 Dyers Hill Charlbury
    Alterations to replace the external stone staircase which serves the barn with a new timber staircase
    WODC reference: 21/00603/LBC - Thu 01 Apr 2021 - Under consideration

Mon 12 Apr, 06:15 · Link


The Secret Exhibition

Thirty two local artists have generously donated work to raise funds for Cornerstone and the next Charlbury Festival. 

 Charlbury Art Society is holding another Secret Art Exhibition which opens on Monday 12th April in the Corner House and in Charlbury Deli & Cafe. This follows the very successful Secret Exhibition in 2019 

 There will be a viewing day on Monday followed by sales from Tuesday. 

 There will be almost sixty mini artworks with drawings and original prints as well as paintings all in the same size frame containing a 150 mm x 100 mm artwork. To add mystery the artist will be anonymous until the work is purchased. 

 There will be a list of contributing artists displayed with the exhibits. All work will be sold for the same amount, £ 20.00 cash only.

Tony Lloyd · Sun 11 Apr, 07:01 · Link


Prince Philip - book of condolences

Charlbury Town Council shares the nation’s sadness at the death of HRH the Duke of Edinburgh.

In normal times we would arrange for a book of condolence to be available for townspeople in a location such as the Corner House or St Mary’s Church. However, the advice from Oxfordshire County Council, the Diocese of Oxford and others is that books of condolence should not be made available during the current pandemic.

Instead, an online book of condolence is shortly to be made available at https://www.royal.uk. There is also one available on the Church of England website.

Fri 9 Apr, 16:06 · Link


Prince Philip

Our sincere condolences and prayers are with Her Majesty the Queen and the Royal Family as they mourn the loss of His Royal Highness, Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh.

St Mary's Church and All Saints' Church

Jo Paton · Fri 9 Apr, 13:58 · Link


Thanks to Charlbury Town Council!

On behalf of The Thomas Gifford Trust, I would like to thank Charlbury Town Council for the kind donation of £3,000 towards Playing Close maintenance, including tree surgery, and £1,500 towards Community activities and Covid-19 support organised at Charlbury Community Centre. The town council’s support is much appreciated especially during these difficult times, when the centre has been closed for a number of months with a significant loss of income.

Also, it's great to see such a long list of candidates for the Council elections. We're spoilt for choice!

Charlbury Community Centre · Fri 9 Apr, 11:34 · Link


Elections on 6 May - full candidate list

Charlbury Town Council

The following 18 candidates have been nominated for the 12 places on Charlbury Town Council, with their self-supplied descriptions.

Where the name is a bold link, you can click it to read the candidate’s manifesto.

Current councillors Kathy Broughton, Tash Ely, Richard Fairhurst and Ron Prew are not standing for re-election.

West Oxfordshire District Council

The following four candidates have been nominated for the Charlbury & Finstock ward on West Oxfordshire District Council, with their party and location:

Oxfordshire County Council

The following four candidates have been nominated for the Charlbury & Wychwood division on Oxfordshire County Council, with their party and location:

  • Jenny Evanson, Conservative (Idbury)
  • Liz Leffman*, Liberal Democrats (Charlbury)
  • Frances Mortimer, Green Party (address in West Oxfordshire)
  • Sue Richards, Labour & Co-operative (Ascott-under-Wychwood)

(* indicates incumbent)

Election manifestos

All candidates, for all three elections. are welcome to submit a manifesto/election address which we will post on the Charlbury website. Please email it to info@charlbury.info and include the word “Election” in the email subject line. Please use PDF format if you can: if you can’t produce a PDF, then you can send a Word document but we probably won’t be able to reproduce any formatting or pictures. Thank you.

Thu 8 Apr, 18:47 · Link


Charlbury Deli & Cafe AGM

Our much loved and well used community Deli and Cafe will be holding its AGM on Monday 26th April at 6pm, by Zoom. A notice will go by email to shareholders next week. It was good to see the Deli getting a good write up in the Sunday Times “best places to live” just recently.

Thu 8 Apr, 18:35 · Link


Roads to Carterton via Burford –Thursday 8th condition report

For those planning a car journey to Carterton Health Centre tomorrow, Friday 9th, for a second COVID vaccine, an ATIC test drive of the route from Charlbury via Burford this afternoon (Thursday) was a clear run, once you were past a stretch of single lane traffic regulated by temporary traffic lights starting over Charlbury bridge just before Charlbury station and ending at the entrance to the Forest Works industrial estate. 3-way lights, so took at bit of time waiting.

The small patch of single lane traffic controlled by temporary lights in Carterton on the road leading down to the town centre looked as though it was in the process of being cleared.

Due to Gigaclear works on Market Street, which is closed to traffic today, you will need to get onto the Burford Road out of Charlbury (Dyers Hill and beyond) via Nine Acres Lane and Thames Street.

So worth leaving a few minutes earlier.

Meryl Smith · Thu 8 Apr, 15:00 · Link


Hook Norton Veterinary Group awarded Best in Oxfordshire in the Best UK Vet Awards 2021

Hook Norton Veterinary Group has been crowned Best in Oxfordshire in the Best UK Vet 2021 Awards, after achieving the most top-rated client reviews over the past 12 months in this category. They have also been voted in the Top 25 in the UK. Vet practices across the UK have been taking part, encouraging pet-owners to leave reviews on www.VetHelpDirect.com and www.Any-UK-Vet.co.uk.

The award reflects dedication to customer service and outstanding care, with over 100 four and five-star reviews. Comments left by happy clients include: “All of the vets at Hook Norton are brilliant, knowledgeable, friendly and always happy to answer my questions. I always feel in good hands and feel supported no matter what the drama is! I would highly recommend them!”

Unsurprisingly the practice is thrilled with the result and Will Oldham, Practice Director, commented “We are over the moon to have won this award, and to have been placed in the Top 25 of the UK. Being an independent veterinary practice, it’s excellent to know that our clients value the hard work and effort everyone puts in. We strive to offer the best veterinary care and advice, and we are able to do this because we have such a wonderful and dedicated team. From our vets, nurses, front-of-house reception teams, to everyone in the background working tirelessly to keep the machine moving, they ensure that we will always be here for our clients and their animals when they need us most.”

The awards organised by VetHelpDirect.com and running for the ninth year, are based on genuine pet owner reviews of veterinary practices around the United Kingdom and count up the number of online four and five-star reviews from their customers over the last year.

Susie Samuel, CEO of VetHelpDirect.com commented: "Choosing the right vet is an important and difficult decision for a new owner. Vet practices are all very different with their own unique characteristics and it can be challenging to understand all those differences and find the best match. This is why hearing from existing clients via online reviews is so helpful; many of the reviews describe detailed stories of first-hand experiences which helps owners get a really good feel for the practice. BestUKVets is a lovely opportunity to reward the practices that are at the top of their game”.

The overall UK winning practice was Cockburn Veterinary Group, in Leicestershire. Silver was awarded to Millennium Veterinary Practice, in Braintree Essex and Bronze to Streatham Hill Veterinary Surgery, London.

Verity Ramus · Wed 7 Apr, 14:14 · Link


Hook Norton Veterinary Group Spreads Cheer to the Blue Cross Charity cats in Burford

Hook Norton Veterinary Group is helping to support the local charity Blue Cross rehoming centre in Burford with a donation of tasty treats for 100 cats. Each cat will enjoy a month's supply, allowing them a daily treat of the delicious salmon paste Add One®, developed in collaboration with vets.

The practice team is delighted to help the Blue Cross, it is an invaluable charity and much appreciated by everyone in and around the local area. Sophie Williams, Head Nurse, explains the importance: 'It's a pleasure to support the Blue Cross with this donation. Treats can play an integral part in forming a bond, particularly for pets in animal shelters that may be more nervous of human interaction. Add One® can be very useful in making activities, such as grooming, a more positive experience. Of course, it is also lovely to see each feline's unique character and personality start to shine!'

While it is important not to over-indulge pets, these treats are a great everyday option as they are low in calories and have other health benefits. Sophie adds: 'Many of these cats will also have underlying health problems, making a paste particularly handy for encouraging intake of medications with reduced handling stress.'

The Blue Cross is based on the Shilton Road in Burford and cares for many animals, including cats, dogs, small pets, and horses. They rely on donations from the public to carry out their vital work within the community. The Blue Cross in Burford provides veterinary care, expert behaviour help, and finds them loving happy homes and offers advice and education for current or future pet owners and pet bereavement support.

Hook Norton Veterinary Group provides veterinary care for the horses at the Blue Cross in Burford, assessing each new intake of horses and providing the horses' ongoing veterinary care before the Blue Cross finds them their forever homes.

Katie Stiles, Animal Welfare Assistant says: 'We really value donations that mean we can continue to provide a high level of quality care for our cats. It is brilliant to be able to provide the cats with such a lovely treat. This will enable us to identify individuals that particularly benefit from a little extra treat in their daily routine, and incorporate this into their long-term care wherever possible.'

Members of the public can donate to The Blue Cross by visiting their website www.https://www.bluecross.org.uk/oxfordshire-burford-rehoming-centre

Hook Norton Veterinary Group provides a professional and modern pet, equine and farm vet service with traditional values in an approachable and compassionate manner. With surgeries in Hook Norton, Charlbury, Deddington and Moreton-in-Marsh, they aim to be a strong member of the communities each practice occupies. The veterinary practice is a member of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS) accreditation scheme, which means they have passed rigorous inspections covering health and safety, hygiene, the provision of 24-hour cover and clinical governance.

As an independent veterinary practice and member of XLVets (a group of independent veterinary practices across the UK), they strive to provide a traditional yet specialist approach in all aspects of animal care. The practice offers a full range of vet health care services, provided by a caring and dedicated team of professional and support staff, many of whom have specialist interests and qualifications, ensuring clients and their animals have the veterinary care they need.

Hook Norton Veterinary Group's Charlbury branch is located at the Spendlove Centre and can be contacted via 01608 811250 or charlbury@hooknortonvets.co.uk. 

Verity Ramus · Wed 7 Apr, 14:04 · Link


Cotswold Frames update 🤸‍♂‍🤸‍♀‍

🥳🥳 We will be reopening on Monday 12th April 🥳🥳

General shop hours 10am -3pm  ⏰⏰

For all Bespoke Picture Framing 🖼 please ring ☎️ and book an appointment 📅 

Picture framing consultation slots go from 3pm each day, please do not just turn up on the off chance as you may be turned away 🚷

General shopping 🛒is for everything apart from Bespoke framing and please note that after 3pm the shop will be Closed for general shopping 🚷 whilst a framing consultation is in progress, the shop will reopen again if a consultation finishes early until the next appointment when it will be closed again.

We are open for UPS 📦 drop off and collection from the 12th April during general shop hours.  

Don't forget that due to only having a max number of 2 persons 🚻 in the shop at anyone time please observe the traffic light 🚦 entry system and before entering the shop USE the automatic hand sanitiser provided and please wear a mask  😷.

Don't forget we are closed Tuesdays and Sundays.

We hope the above information is clear if in doubt please call before making a visit.

Tim at Cotswold Frames · Wed 7 Apr, 12:21 · Link


Dynamos Cricket - Girls Only sessions for 8-11 year olds

Charlbury Cricket Club is excited to be running new GIRLS ONLY cricket sessions for 8-11 year olds, in the form of Dynamos Cricket.  Dynamos Cricket is an ECB initiative and sign up will include a New Balance top and access to exclusive Dynamos content via an App.  The programme of 8 weekly sessions will run on Friday evenings from 7th May at 6.30pm and last for approximately 75 minutes.  The sessions will include a skills session and finish of with a game of countdown cricket.  All girls aged 8-11 are welcome!  More details and the booking link can be found HERE If you require any further information please don't hesitate to get in touch on charlbury.allstars@gmail.com

A Westbury · Tue 6 Apr, 17:56 · Link


Brian's Reopening

Brian's is reopening on Monday 12th April from 9am-1pm then 2pm-5.30pm the rest of the week will be his normal working hours. 

He will also open the following Monday 19th April  from 9am-1pm then 2pm-5.30pm the rest of the week will be his normal working hours.

The following week he will NOT be open on the Monday 26th April and he will be working his normal hours. 

Michael Butler 16 · Tue 6 Apr, 15:34 · Link


Charlbury Library Re-opening 12th April

We are delighted to announce that Charlbury Library will reopen on Monday 12th April.  This will be on limited opening hours temporarily, as before, on Mondays 10am-1pm / Wednesdays & Fridays 2pm-5pm.  The Library will not be accessible to the public at any other time, though you can drop off your returned books into the red quarantine crates at any time the Community Centre is open.

We will still require face masks to be worn (unless medically exempt) and would ask that customers sanitise their hands on entry and scan the NHS Covid-19 QR code or complete a Track & Trace form.

The staff and volunteers look forward to seeing everyone again very soon!

Charlbury Library · Tue 6 Apr, 15:05 · Link


Reptile Survey at Wigwell Nature Reserve

For the next few months the Wychwood Project will be running a reptile survey at Wigwell Nature Reserve—and if you would like to get involved, you can. The Project is looking for local volunteers to help monitor the survey, which should take around 40 minutes. Volunteers will be given full training beforehand by the Project's expert herpetologist, Neil Clennell.

Reptiles are cold-blooded, and at this time of year want to warm up so that they can feed and mate. To prepare Wigwell for the survey the Wychwood Project has put down sheets of corrugated iron and roofing felt, which will warm up more in the sun than the ground around them. As a result, reptiles should seek refuge beneath them, making it possible to find and record them. 

The survey will run from April to June, with the sheets being checked every few days. To find out more or sign up to help, visit: https://signup.zone/zkAoRogyAFvLMGB5q Children accompanied by adults are welcome to help. 

Surveying is an important part of conservation as it enables us to understand what's living in particular areas. This in turn informs how nature reserves like Wigwell are managed, and helps conservation organisations benefit as many species as possible. 

Miranda Davies · Tue 6 Apr, 14:39 · 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.

  • Grace Cottage Market Street Charlbury
    Discharge of condition 5 (details of external windows and doors) of planning permission 20/01196/HHD
    WODC reference: 21/00689/CND - Mon 29 Mar 2021 - Under consideration

Mon 5 Apr, 06:15 · Link


The History of Charlbury through... our ridge and furrow fields

Judy Dod for Charlbury Museum

As we have all walked the footpaths around the town over the last year, many people have become more aware of the history written in our landscape. My favourite time to walk is early evening when low raking sunlight and deep shadows accentuate features. In the field just beyond the cemetery, the remnants of the medieval ridge and furrow farming system are particularly highlighted at this time of day.

Medieval villagers depended on growing their own crops to fill their stomachs. As many of you will remember from school history lessons, land around settlements was divided into common fields, often three, where each year two fields were cultivated and one left fallow in rotation.

In Charlbury there were two if not three ‘common’ fields, The map shows one possible arrangement - North Field and South or Home Field with the track we know as Hundley Way dividing them. Lees Rest Wood was also common land. The fields were divided into strips of one furlong (c.200 metres) and people’s strips were scattered between the fields.  The ridges were formed over the years by repeated ploughing which always turned the soil to the right. The ridges were better drained than the lower furrows so suited wheat, while pulses could tolerate the damper lower parts of the ridge or the furrows. In sloping fields, water would drain down the furrows into ditches. Today in some places the different soil conditions are still reflected in the different plant species that grow on the ridges and in the furrows.

Livestock could graze on common land and also in the fallow fields and on stubble after harvest. Pannage was the right to graze pigs on acorns in woodland, usually for a set number of days or specified period each year. The townspeople fought for their rights if they were under threat. In the late 16th and early 17th century this led to clashes with the Lees of Ditchley. A long-standing dispute over grazing rights between them came to a head in 1610 when Sir Henry Lee obtained the right to enclose Abbot’s Wood where he had built Lees Rest. The townspeople fought back and enjoyed their common rights until 1629 when the second Sir Henry Lee again tried to enclose the wood. It seems likely that this time he succeeded as there are no further references to common rights being exercised in those woods.

We’ll look at the enclosure of common land in another posting.

Judy Dod · Fri 2 Apr, 20:18 · Link


Roads to Carterton via Burford – Friday condition report!

For those planning a car journey to Carterton Health Centre on Saturday, 3rd for a second COVID vaccine, an ATIC test drive of the route from Charlbury via Burford this morning (Friday) was a clear run apart from 2 small patches of single lane traffic controlled by temporary lights – one in Fulbrook and the other in Carterton on the road leading down to the town centre. May be worth leaving a few minutes earlier.

To be on the safe side, due to Gigaclear works on Market Street, it is best to get onto the Burford Road out of Charlbury (Dyers Hill and beyond) via Nine Acres Lane and Thames Street. However, today Gigaclear have kindly marked Easter by leaving Market Street temporarily open to traffic before they close it again to resume work next week.

Meryl Smith · Fri 2 Apr, 12:39 · Link


Charlbury Medical Centre : Pfizer vaccinations at Carterton

Letters have gone out inviting people for vaccination at Carterton on the confirmed dates below. This is for the second dose of the Pfizer/ BioNTech vaccine only. If you have not yet heard from the Practice and you are due your second dose of this vaccine, you will be contacted shortly 

People who received the Oxford /A/Z vaccine at the Sports Centre have not yet been called for their second dose, and the Practice is awaiting confirmation of delivery of that vaccine.

Saturday 3rd April for over 85's who had first immunisation on 16/1/21 , for second immunisation at Carterton Health Centre with Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine

Friday 9th April for over 80's and remaining over 85's who had first immunisation on 19/1/21 for second immunisation at Carterton Health Centre with Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine.

Monday 12th April for second immunisation at Carterton Health Centre with Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, additional clinic. 

You must take your vaccination card with you . We understand that the forms do not need to be completed again, they have all your information previously submitted. 

If you need help with transport to Carterton please contact ATIC as below.

Nikki Rycroft · Fri 2 Apr, 10:57 · Link


Proposed retrospective change of land use by Little Wild Things C.I.C

Who are we?

Little Wild Things is a community interest company run for the benefit of the families of Charlbury and the surrounding villages in West Oxfordshire. Our social purpose is to provide outdoor nature play for young children in an area of local woodland. We are passionate about getting kids outside and inspiring them about the natural world.

What do we do?

We run regular woodland sessions for pre-school and primary school age children to attend through local nurseries or with their parents. Activities at a session might include bug hunting, mud painting or building pixie gardens. We’ve been running in the area since 2014 and usually have over 150 children joining our outdoor sessions each week. We employ local people, have local volunteers and work with six pre-schools, one school and hundreds of local families.

Our history

When we set up in 2014, we were working from a woodland site on the Ditchley estate. Our sessions became very popular and we built up a strong community following in this time. We were required to leave Ditchley in 2020 due to essential tree felling works on the estate. In order for us to continue offering our services to the families and pre-schools we had been working with, it was essential that we find a new woodland site close to Charlbury. We were delighted when the Cornbury estate offered us the use of Little Cranehill Copse in August 2020. During our move we had tremendous local support and were able to raise over £5000 in donations from local people in just a few weeks to cover the costs of setting up our new site.

Planning application

In order to comply with planning law in working from this new site, Little Wild Things intends to apply to the council for a change of land use. The proposal concerns the erection of a yurt within the woodland and the extension of an existing area of hardcore to be used as a carpark. All planned changes are temporary and reversible as the ethos of our organisation is to leave no trace.

The area under proposal sits on land owned by the Cornbury Estate and is located approximately one mile outside Charlbury, to the west. The site consists of a small area of woodland, within Little Cranehill Copse, and an area of hardcore in the corner of the adjacent arable field.

The existing area of hardcore, which is in place for use by the Cornbury Estate’s agricultural vehicles, does not provide sufficient parking space for use by families attending Little Wild Things. Prior to the opening of Little Wild Things last year, a section of temporary rubber matting was installed, kindly lent by the Cornbury Estate. Sadly, this rubber matter was stolen from the site a week ago. As further theft cannot be prevented, replacing the mats is not an option, but work is urgently needed to prepare the ground to allow Little Wild Things to re-open as planned in April. Any work to re-do this area so that it is suitable for cars is a huge cost for us as a not-for-profit organisation to bear, but without the space for people to park, we cannot deliver our important offering to the community.

We have therefore made the difficult decision to go ahead and lay an additional small area of hardcore to replace the stolen rubber matting. This work will then be included in a retrospective application to the planning department to be submitted in the near future.

Little Wild Things want to make the town council and the local community aware of the intended work, and reassure people that an application is imminent and the proper permissions will soon be in place. We are working closely with WODC to draw up a retrospective application for change of use, including the implementation of measures to mitigate any adverse impacts our presence may have on the local area, namely the installation of a hedge to screen cars from view.

We are very excited about opening in April after such a long period of closure, and working closely once again with the children and families in the local area. We feel passionately that what we do is enormously important and we are incredibly grateful to the Cornbury estate in allowing us to use a part of their fantastic woodland for educating and inspiring children. If you would like to know more about Little Wild Things you can find more information on our website.

With warm wishes,

Christine Donaldson and Charlotte Hansford

Little Wild Things CIC

07703121715

littlewildthings@outlook.com

www.littlewildthings.org.uk

Christine Donaldson · Thu 1 Apr, 10:48 · Link


Charlbury Museum news

Sadly the museum will not be reopening this Easter weekend as we usually do. Under the current Covid restrictions, it is likely that the museum will remain closed for a few more months. Perhaps late June will bring better news, once the rules on social distancing are relaxed. We are also actively exploring other ways we can make the collection available to the town, maybe by timed appointments or mini-displays, and a new museum website is in the making.

Meanwhile we are resuming our regular weekly postings on this site to keep you in touch with some of the interesting and fascinating items and records we hold in the museum. A new item will go up each weekend as before, and we have a wide variety of topics planned – there should be something to interest everyone. So keep an eye out for this week’s posting on Easter Saturday. We wish everyone a happy and safe Easter weekend and look forward to sharing more of the town’s history with you.

Judy Dod · Thu 1 Apr, 08:37 · Link


IT IS NOT AN APRIL FOOLS JOKE

There is still too much speeding traffic on Charlbury’s roads.

The results of the traffic monitoring sessions held in March are shown on the Community Speedwatch page and they show shocking, unacceptable speeds of up to 51 mph in the ’20 zone’ and 64 mph in the ‘30 area’.

What can be done to get the message through?

Is it time to educate young children to ask ‘ mummy, why are you driving so fast?’ or to tell daddy to ‘slow down, it’s too fast’.

PLEASE SLOW DOWN for everyone’s sake.

Brian Murray · Thu 1 Apr, 07:28 · Link


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