Shrivenham

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Coordinates: 51°35′53″N 1°39′32″W / 51.598°N 1.659°W / 51.598; -1.659

Shrivenham
Shrivenham StAndrew southwest.JPG
St Andrew's parish church
Shrivenham is located in Oxfordshire
Shrivenham
Shrivenham
 Shrivenham shown within Oxfordshire
Population 2,352 (2001 census)[1]
OS grid reference SU2388
District Vale of White Horse
Shire county Oxfordshire
Region South East
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town Swindon
Postcode district SN6
Dialling code 01793
Police Thames Valley
Fire Oxfordshire
Ambulance Great Western
EU Parliament South East England
UK Parliament Wantage
Website Shrivenham Oxfordshire England
List of places
UK
England
Oxfordshire

Shrivenham is a large village and civil parish in the Vale of White Horse, England, about 5 miles (8 km) southwest of Faringdon. The village is close to the county boundary with Wiltshire and about 6 miles (10 km) northeast of Swindon. Shrivenham was part of Berkshire until the 1974 boundary changes transferred the Vale of White Horse to Oxfordshire.

Character[edit]

The Prince of Wales public house
The Barrington Arms public house

Shrivenham has numerous thatched cottages, stone walls, an historic pump and a parish church that is unusual for having been rebuilt in the 17th century. The village has three historic public houses: the Barrington Arms, The Crown and the Prince of Wales.

Beckett estate[edit]

Barnacle Lodge, built as an entrance lodge to Beckett Hall in the 1830s
Main article: Beckett Hall

The main country estate in Shrivenham is the Beckett Estate. In the 17th century it was the home of Henry Marten, the regicide. Later the Barrington family owned the estate and lived at Beckett Hall. The family and estate gave their names to Great Barrington, Massachusetts and Becket, Massachusetts.[citation needed]

Charlotte, the second wife of the 8th Viscount Barrington, endowed the memorial hall in the village: it was opened in 1926 by Princess Beatrice, daughter of Queen Victoria. [2]

G.I. American University[edit]

At the end of World War II in Europe, the U.S. Army's Information and Educational Branch was ordered to establish an overseas university campus for demobilized American service men and women. It did this on the Beckett estate at Shrivenham. This, and two campuses in Europe, was set up to provide a transition between army life and subsequent attendance at a university in the USA, and therefore students attended for just one term (see G. I. American Universities) [3]

UK Military Colleges[edit]

Students take part in a life drawing class at the US Army University, Shrivenham in 1945

Shrivenham has been the site of UK military colleges since 1946 and the establishment of the Royal Military College of Science (RMCS) in the grounds of Beckett Hall. This college is now called the Defence College of Management and Technology, which is part of the Defence Academy of the United Kingdom.

The academy provides higher education for personnel in the British Armed Forces, Civil Service, other government departments and service personnel from other nations. The current Director General is Peter Watkins who took up his post on 6 June 2011.[4] The academy is headquartered at Shrivenham and delivers education and training in a number of sites. The majority of training is postgraduate with many courses being accredited for the award of civilian qualifications. Cranfield University, King's College London, SERCO Defence Science and Technology and the University of Portsmouth Business School have strong links with the Defence Academy, being the academic providers.[clarification needed]

The Conflict Studies Research Centre (CSRC) is just over the parish boundary in Watchfield.

Joint Services Command and Staff College (JSCSC) is a British military academic establishment providing training and education to experienced officers of the Royal Navy, British Army, Royal Air Force, Ministry of Defence Civil Service, and serving officers of other states.

JSCSC combined the single service provision of the British Armed Forces: Royal Naval College, Greenwich, Staff College, Camberley, RAF Staff College, Bracknell and the Joint Service Defence College, Greenwich. Initially formed at Bracknell in 1997, the college moved to a purpose-built facility in the grounds of the Defence Academy of the United Kingdom and is co-located with the Defence College of Management and Technology, Shrivenham.

The Defence College of Management and Technology (DA-CMT) is a UK postgraduate school, research institution and training provider formed in 2009 from five departments of the Defence Academy of the United Kingdom, and as such part of the British Armed Forces. Since 1984 Cranfield University has been the main academic provider of the College. A November 2005 contract extends the Cranfield relationship with DA-CMT to at least 2027.

The Conflict Studies Research Centre (CSRC) was part of the UK Defence Academy. It specialised in potential causes of conflict in a wide area ranging from the Baltic to Central Asia. This geographical focus was inherited from the Centre's original incarnation as the Soviet Studies Research Centre (SSRC) in 1972, at Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, examining the Soviet military threat. Renamed in the 1990s, the Centre later examined wider issues including foreign policy, energy security and demographic change. CSRC hosted a small number of deep country[clarification needed] specialists, providing in-house expertise on their subject countries to government and academic customers in the UK and beyond, as well as publishing research in their own right. In 2006, CSRC was absorbed into the Advanced Research and Assessment Group (ARAG), another component of the UK Defence Academy, which was subsequently disbanded. In May 2010, former research staff of CSRC, laid off at its closure, re-formed the organisation independently of the Ministry of Defence.

Churches[edit]

St. Andrew's parish church: vault of the central tower, circa 1400
St. Andrew's parish church: Jacobean pulpit and tester, circa 1638

Shrivenham had a parish church by 1117, when Henry I granted its advowson to the Augustinian Cirencester Abbey upon the latter's foundation.[5] Little survives from the church of that time save for part of the west wall of the nave, which is late 12th century,[5] and the font which is carved from Purbeck Marble.[6] By the 15th century the parish church was cruciform,[5] with a central Perpendicular Gothic belltower that was built in about 1400.[6]

The present Church of England parish church of Saint Andrew is the result of a comprehensive and unusual rebuilding in 1638, funded largely by the Earl of Craven.[6] The end walls of the nave, chancel and two transepts were extended to form a rectangle with a nave of three bays with round arches on Tuscan columns with excessive entasis;[6] a chancel of two bays; and north and south aisles running the full length of the nave, tower and chancel.[5] The nave, chancel and aisles share one continuous roof. The central bell tower was retained in what otherwise was an almost completely new early 17th century church.[7] A Jacobean wooden pulpit and tester and almost continuous panelling around the walls completed the interior.[6] The building remains largely as it was completed in 1638, apart from the addition of a neoclassical west porch in the middle of the 18th century.[8]

Inside St. Andrew's are numerous monuments. The oldest is a stone recumbent effigy in the south aisle, apparently of a 14th-century woman.[8] Many of the monuments from later centuries commemorate notable residents of Beckett Hall, including John Wildman (c. 1621–93), Rothesia Ann Barrington (died 1745; monument sculpted by Thomas Paty), John Barrington, 1st Viscount Barrington (1678–1734), William Barrington, 2nd Viscount Barrington (1717–93; monument designed by James Wyatt and sculpted by Richard Westmacott) and Rear Admiral Samuel Barrington (1729–1800; monument sculpted by John Flaxman).[6]

The tower has a ring of ten bells. Mears and Stainbank of the Whitechapel Bell Foundry cast the six largest bells, including the tenor, in 1908.[9] Gillett & Johnston of Croydon cast the third and fourth bells in 1948.[9] These were a gift from a US Army civil affairs unit that trained in Shrivenham before the Normandy invasion. [10] The ring was increased from eight to ten bells in 2003 when the Whitechapel Bellfoundry cast the present treble and second bells.[9]

A Primitive Methodist chapel was established in the village in 1872.[5] It is now Shrivenham Methodist Church.

Economic history[edit]

Aerial view of Shrivenham showing St Andrew's parish church
Elm Tree House, built of the local stone in about 1700, with Tuscan porch added later

There has been human settlement at Shrivenham from at least 400 BC. The remains of a Roman villa have been uncovered nearby.

Shrivenham is part of Shrivenham Hundred which includes Ashbury, Buscot, Coleshill, Compton Beauchamp, Eaton Hastings, Longcot, Shrivenham, and Uffington.[11] After the 19th century English hundreds effectively ceased to function, although they have not been abolished.[citation needed]

The Wilts & Berks Canal from Semington on the Kennet and Avon Canal to Abingdon on the River Thames was built between 1796 and 1810. In 1805 it reached Shrivenham where a wharf was built.[12] Coal delivered via Semington to Shrivenham peaked at 601 tons in 1840,[13] when the Great Western Railway was built through the area and opened Shrivenham railway station. Coal deliveries by canal fluctuated through the 1840s and then collapsed from 272 tons in 1850 to only 28 tons in 1852 and none for most years thereafter, except for 27 tons in 1858 and 24 tons in 1864.[13]

Other canal freight also declined, and between 1893 and 1896 just 48 tons were shipped between Shrivenham and Wantage.[14] In 1894–95 Ainsworth, a local canal carrier, handled 23 tons of freight at Shrivenham.[15] By then the canal was increasingly in disrepair, in 1901 the collapse of the Stanley Aqueduct effectively ended the little remaining traffic and in 1914 an Act of Parliament formalised the abandonment of the canal.

Shrivenham railway station continued to serve the parish until British Railways closed it in 1964.

Literature[edit]

St. Andrew's Church of England Controlled Primary School was built as a National School in 1863.

In Tom Brown's Schooldays, the main character Tom Brown mentions Shrivenham railway station (now closed):

"Most of you have probably travelled down the Great Western Railway as far as Swindon. Those of you who did so with their eyes open have been aware, soon after leaving the Didcot station, of a fine range of chalk hills running parallel with the railway on the left-hand side as you go down, and distant some two or three miles, more or less, from the line. The highest point in the range is the White Horse Hill, which you come in front of just before you stop at the Shrivenham station. If you love English scenery, and have a few hours to spare, you can't do better, the next time you pass, than stop at the Farringdon Road or Shrivenham station, and make your way to that highest point."

Notable people[edit]

Late 17th or early 18th century thatched cottages in Longcot Road
Jacobean manor house, formerly located at the top of Manor Lane

Sport and leisure[edit]

Shrivenham Memorial Hall in Highworth Road was built in the 1920s.
  • The local football team is Shrivenham F.C.
  • The Vale of White Horse Gliding Centre[16] flies from Sandhill Farm, just north of the village.
  • Shrivenham Amateur Dramatics Society[17]

Twin town[edit]

References[edit]

Public notice on the wall of Tarifa Cottage in Faringdon Road
  1. ^ "Area: Shrivenham CP (Parish): Parish Headcounts". Neighbourhood Statistics. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 13 March 2010. 
  2. ^ "MEMORIAL HALL About The Hall". Shrivenham village website. 
  3. ^ MacKenzie, Norman (17 November 1945). "Shrivenham". New Statesman and Nation: 329. Retrieved 8 October 2011. 
  4. ^ "New Director General at the Defence Academy". Defence Academy of the UK news release. June 2011. Retrieved 1 September 2011. 
  5. ^ a b c d e Page & Ditchfield 1924, pp. 531–543.
  6. ^ a b c d e f Pevsner 1966, p. 218.
  7. ^ Pevsner 1966, p. 217.
  8. ^ a b "Parish Church of St Andrew". National Heritage List for England. English Heritage. Retrieved 14 March 2012. 
  9. ^ a b c Baldwin, John (13 November 2005). "Shrivenham S Andrew". Dove's Guide for Church Bell Ringers. Central Council of Church Bell Ringers. 
  10. ^ "Unit History". 
  11. ^ Page & Ditchfield 1924, pp. 500–502.
  12. ^ Dalby 2000, p. 23.
  13. ^ a b Dalby 2000, p. 119.
  14. ^ Dalby 2000, p. 123.
  15. ^ Dalby 2000, p. 124.
  16. ^ Vale of White Horse Gliding Centre
  17. ^ Facebook page

Sources and further reading[edit]

Marble and polished brown stone monument to Rothesia Ann Barrington (died 1745), sculpted by Thomas Paty
  • Boobyer, David (2005). Shrivenham: Portraits of a Typical English Village. 
  • Child, Mark (2007). Guide to St Andrew's Church Shrivenham In The Diocese of Oxford. Thanet: The Church Publishers. 
  • Dalby, L.J. (2000) [1971]. The Wilts and Berks Canal (3rd ed.). Usk: Oakwood Press. pp. 23, 119, 123, 124. ISBN 0-85361-562-4. 
  • Dils, Joan; Schwartz, Deidre (2004). Tudor and Stuart Shrivenham. self-published by the authors. 
  • Hill, Rev. Edward Frank (1929). A Record of the Parish of Shrivenham, Berkshire. Faringdon: C. Luker. 
  • Laird, Philip (2007). Shrivenham: A Local Place for Local People. 
  • Page, W.H.; Ditchfield, P.H., eds. (1924). A History of the County of Berkshire, Volume 4. Victoria County History. pp. 531–543. 
  • Pevsner, Nikolaus (1966). Berkshire. The Buildings of England. Harmondsworth: Penguin Books. pp. 217–218. 

External links[edit]