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The earliest documentary evidence for continuous settlement in the parish is from the 13th century, but there is fragmentary evidence for earlier occupation from as far back as the Bronze Age. It is claimed that there were Roman remains just outside South Marston on a field of Rowborough Farm, which have long disappeared. Ermin Street, the major Roman road linking Silchester and Gloucester, ran close to the southwest side of the village, separating it from Stratton St Margaret. There was a Roman station at Durocornovium (now Covingham) one mile south of the village.
The toponym "Marston" is from Old English, which would date the founding of the village prior to the Norman conquest of England in 1066, but it is not recorded in the Domesday Book of 1086. Documentary evidence exists from about 1280, when the village is mentioned as part of Highworth Hundred.
Aircraft and car manufacture
Early in the Second World War a Ministry of Aircraft Production shadow factory and airfield were built for the Phillips and Powis company (later Miles Aircraft) that built Miles Master training aircraft there. Short Brothers Ltd also used part of the airfield for final assembly and testing locally-built of Short Stirling bombers. Vickers-Armstrong-Supermarine acquired the site by the end of the war and continued to produce Supermarine aircraft such as the Attacker, Swift and Scimitar there until the early 1960s.
A large residential development was built on the site of the Manor House in the mid-1980s.
This article summarises the history section of the village web site, which is a referenced resource for research on the village's history.
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