St Mary the Virgin parish church
Ashbury shown within Oxfordshire
|Population||495 (2001 census)|
|OS grid reference|
|District||Vale of White Horse|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|EU Parliament||South East England|
|Website||Ashbury Parish News|
Ashbury is a village and civil parish in the Vale of White Horse. It was part of Berkshire until the 1974 boundary changes transferred it to Oxfordshire. The village is about 7 miles (11 km) east of Swindon in neighbouring Wiltshire. The parish includes the hamlets of Idstone and Kingstone Winslow.
The earliest known record of Ashbury is from AD 840, when King Æthelwulf of Wessex granted land at Aisshedoune to his minister Duda. In subsequent charters the toponym evolved as Æcesbyrig in AD 856, Aysshedoune in AD 947, Æcesburuh in AD 953 and 960 and Eissesberie in the 11th century.
After AD 953 the manor of Ashbury was granted to Glastonbury Abbey, which then held it until the Dissolution of the Monasteries in 1539. A deer park was established for the Abbey in the south of the parish. It is bounded by an ancient embankment enclosing a rounded area characteristic of Medieval parks. It may equate to the Aysshen Wood recorded in a terrier of the parish in 1519 as covering 415 acres (168 ha). The former deer park is now the Upper Wood of Ashdown Park.
Ashdown House, built in about 1660, is in the parish about 2 miles (3 km) south of the village.
The first free school in the United Kingdom was founded in Ashbury by the curate Thomas Stock in 1777 in collaboration with his colleague Robert Raikes. There are monuments to Thomas Stock in St Mary’s Church.
The Church of England parish church of Saint Mary was originally Norman but was rebuilt in the 13th century. In the 20th century the artist Martin Travers converted the north transept into a chapel of Saint Hubert in memory of Evelyn, Countess Craven who had lived at Ashdown House in the parish.
The Church of England primary school in Ashbury serves both Ashbury and Compton Beauchamp. The present school was built in the latter part of the 20th century. The previous school building is now the village hall.
Ashbury has a cricket club.
- "Area: Ashbury CP (Parish): Parish Headcounts". Neighbourhood Statistics. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 23 March 2010.
- Page & Ditchfield 1924, pp. 503–512.
- Ford, David Nash (2004). "Ashbury". Royal Berkshire History. David Nash Ford. Retrieved 24 January 2011.
- Rackham 1976, p. 144.
- Pevsner 1966, p. 71.
- Pevsner 1966, pp. 70-71.
- Bunce, Suzanne (2009). "Ashbury Evangelical Free Church". Ashbury. Ashbury Parish Council. Retrieved 17 January 2011.
- Welcome to the Rose and Crown
- Arkell's Pubs: The Rose and Crown Hotel, Ashbury
- Welcome to Ashbury with Compton Beauchamp CE(A) Primary School website
- Ashbury Cricket Club
- Page, W.H.; Ditchfield, P.H., eds. (1924). A History of the County of Berkshire, Volume 4. Victoria County History. pp. 503–512.
- Pevsner, Nikolaus (1966). Berkshire. The Buildings of England. Harmondsworth: Penguin Books. pp. 70–72.
- Rackham, Oliver (1976). Trees and Woodland in the British Landscape. Archaeology in the Field Series. London: J.M. Dent & Sons Ltd. p. 144. ISBN 0-460-04183-5.
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