St. Giles' parish church
|Population||1,497 (parish, with Brighthampton) (2011 Census)|
|OS grid reference|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|EU Parliament||South East England|
|Website||Welcome to Standlake Oxfordshire|
Standlake is a village and civil parish about 5 miles (8 km) southeast of Witney and 7 miles (11 km) west of Oxford, England in the district of West Oxfordshire. The parish includes the hamlet of Brighthampton. The 2011 Census recorded the parish's population as 1,497.
The River Windrush flows past the village and with its tributary Medley Brook it forms much of the eastern boundary of the parish. The western boundary has been subject to changes and disputes in past centuries. It now follows Brighthampton Cut, an artificial land drain dug in the 19th century. The Windrush joins the River Thames at Newbridge just over 1 mile (1.6 km) to the south.
Palaeolithic axes have been found west of Standlake village and northeast of Brighthampton. Neolithic implements have been found north of Standlake village. Late Bronze Age urn burials have been found in ring ditches north of Brighthampton on Standlake Downs. Evidence of an extensive Iron Age settlement with round huts and storage pits has been found near the Bronze Age site. Sites have been found north and northeast of Standlake village where there were Roman settlements from the middle of the 1st century AD until late in the 2nd century AD. There was also a Roman settlement west of Standlake village.
A large pagan burial ground from the 5th and 6th centuries AD has been found south of Malthouse Farm in Brighthampton. Burials from the 7th century have been found in the Bronze Age burial ground on Standlake Downs. Brighthampton was first recorded in AD 984 in the Saxon era, when it was part of the Royal manor of Bampton.
The Domesday Book records that in 1086 William FitzOsbern, 1st Earl of Hereford was the feudal overlord of a manor of six hides at Brighthampton. However, this is believed to be the manor that later became known as Standlake. By 1242 Baldwin de Redvers, 3rd Earl of Devon was the overlord of Standlake. When his heir Richard de Redvers, 4th Earl of Devon died in 1193, Standlake passed to the Crown. In 1355-56 Edward III granted Standlake to his daughter Isabella de Coucy. After her death, Richard II granted Standlake to William Montacute, 2nd Earl of Salisbury. Standlake belonged to John of Gaunt, 1st Duke of Lancaster by 1388 and was recorded as part of the Duchy of Lancaster until early in the 16th century.
In 1086 FitzOsbern's mesne lord was Anchetil de Greye, who also held Rotherfield Greys in South Oxfordshire. The mesne lordship remained with the de Greyes until 1192, when John de Greye died without a male heir and his holding Standlake passed to his daughter Eve. Eve's husband Ralph Murdac took part in a rebellion for which he was deprived of his landholdings in 1194, but after Ralph's death Richard I restored Standlake to Eve. When Eve died in 1242 the tenure of the manor was divided into quarters, which were not reunited until the 16th century.
The main part of Standlake Manor House is a timber-framed house built in the 15th century. A chimney stack and a stone fireplace with heraldic decoration were inserted around 1600. The western bay of the mediaeval house was demolished at some time and only the central and eastern bays survive. A stone-built extension was added to the house in 1889.
Church of England
The Church of England parish church of Saint Giles dates from the latter part of the 12th century. It was enlarged in the 13th and 14th centuries and underwent further alterations in about 1500. The Gothic Revival architect C.C. Rolfe restored the building between 1880 and 1891 and the spire was restored in 1911. The west tower has a ring of six bells.
The central range of St Giles' Rectory dates from at least 1246 and includes a lancet window from about 1300. The north range was added late in the 15th century, and a small south wing was added in 1661. Further alterations and additions were made in the 18th and 19th centuries, and dilapidated outbuildings including the parish's tithe barn were demolished. In 1980 the rectory was sold as a private house, and in restoration work in 1981 the new owners uncovered early 17th century wall paintings in an upstairs room over the hall.
In the 15th century Standlake had a hermitage. After the English Reformation it became a cottage and was absorbed into Manor Farm. The building still existed in 1659 and may have been incorporated into later buildings, but if so it was demolished when the Manor House was extended in 1889.
A few families of nonconformists were recorded in the parish in the latter part of the 17th century, and in the 18th century several local families were Anabaptists who attended a chapel in Cote. A Baptist chapel was built between Brighthampton and Standlake in 1832, flourished in the 1840s and 50s and a gallery was added to increase capacity in 1865. In the 20th century falling attendances led to services being discontinued in 1937, but they were resumed in 1951. The chapel finally closed in 1978 and in 1994 it was serving as the offices of a missionary society. It is now a private house.
Gaunt House, a moated house 0.5 miles (800 m) east of Standlake Village across the River Windrush, existed by the latter part of the 15th century. It is named after the family that owned it until 1516. In the English Civil War it belonged to Samuel Fell, Dean of Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford and was garrisoned by Royalist troops until the Parliamentarian Colonel Thomas Rainsborough besieged and captured it in May 1645. Thereafter it was garrisoned by Parliamentarian troops, including cavalry who raided Kidlington in October 1645 and infantry who fought at Radcot in April 1646. After Samuel Fell's death in 1649 Gaunt House passed first to his widow Margaret and then to his son John Fell, who was Bishop of Oxford from 1676. On his death in 1686 John Fell left Gaunt House to Christ Church, Oxford to provide an income to pay bursaries for poor students. It remained with Christ Church until it was sold 1955. Gaunt House was originally timber-framed but only a section of the original structure remains: all the rest having been replaced in stone by the early part of the 17th century.
Lincoln Farm house, formerly Tyrlings, is also a late mediaeval timber-framed building. It had a chimney stack inserted about 1564 and a stone-built second wing added before the end of the 16th century. At one time its tenant was Walter Bayley, who was physician to Elizabeth I and from 1561 until 1582 was Regius Professor of Physic at the University of Oxford.
Cheswell Cottage was originally called Bodens. It is a timber framed thatched cottage dating from around 1550, with subsequent stone built 17th and 20th century additions. For parts of the 17th and 18th century it was owned by Lincoln College, Oxford.
The Domesday Book in 1086 recorded one watermill on the de Grey estate. By the 13th century the parish had five mills on the River Windrush of which two were fulling mills involved with west Oxfordshire's trade in wool. Weaving was a cottage industry in the parish until the middle of the 18th century.
Gaunt Mill, about 400 yards (370 m) southwest of Gaunt House, was the "new mill" in the early part of the 13th century. It was a double mill with one part for corn and the other for fulling. From the early part of the 17th century it was purely a corn or gristmill. Magdalen College, Oxford acquired interests in Gaunt Mill in 1483 and 1538 and bought the mill outright in 1617. By 1883 the mill was in poor repair and by 1928 it was in only occasional use. Magdalen College sold the mill in 1920 and it was converted to private use in the 1940s and 1950s.
Church Mill, about 250 yards (230 m) upstream of St. Giles' church, existed by 1279. It may have always been a corn mill, and in the 18th and 19th centuries it had a bakery. By 1636 Magdalen College had a half share in Church Mill. The mill was disused by 1911 but was repaired in the 1920s and generated electricity until 1968. During the Second World War it again undertook some corn milling. The mill was restored again early in the 1980s and was still in working order in 2006.
In 1230 Standlake was licensed to hold a three-day market annually on St. Giles day and the days immediately before and thereafter (31 August – 2 September). By 1279 the market had reduced to two days, and shortly thereafter it seems to have lapsed.
By the latter part of the Middle Ages the main north-south route through the parish was that between Witney and Newbridge, which formed part of the main highway between London and Gloucestershire. Since the 1920s the Berinsfield - Abingdon - Witney stretch of this road has been classified as the A415. Aston Road, which links Brighthampton with Cote, was a bridleway until 1629, when it was made into a highway. It is now part of the B4449 road.
By the early part of the 17th century Standlake had three or four public houses, including the Chequers, which traded until at least 1781. By the latter part of the 18th century Standlake had between seven and 11 pubs. The Black Horse is a 16th-century building that was a pub by 1761 and continues to trade today. By 1790 The Bell had opened in Rack End, but by 1804 it had moved to the High Street to a building part of which is timber-framed infilled with brick nogging, and the remainder of which is built of Cotswold stone. The Bell was closed for refurbishment for some time after the sale of the pub by Greene King in 2008, but reopened in August 2010 as a free house run by Few Inns.
A school in Standlake was mentioned in 1672 and bequests to fund the education of Standlake were made in 1711 and 1721. Classes were held in St. Giles' church until 1846, when a schoolroom and schoolmaster's house were built on land given by Magdalen College. The building was enlarged in 1866, 1874 and 1894. In 1939 the school was reorganised as a junior and infants' school and in 1947 it became a Voluntary controlled school. The school was enlarged again in 1969 and continues to serve the parishes of Standlake and Northmoor. 
Standlake had a lending library, established with the support of the Rector by 1877, and which continued intermittently until the 20th century. In 1924 it was superseded by a new library at the village school, which served the village until 1964 when it was succeeded by Oxfordshire County Council's mobile library service.
In about 1921 a converted army hut was erected as Standlake's first village hall. It was replaced by the present community centre in 1989. In 1954 a second army hut was erected as a youth club. It was replaced by a purpose built club building in 1963.
Standlake has a Post Office and general store and a car repair garage. There are various small to medium sized businesses both within the village and on two light industrial parks in the parish.
The Standlake Players is an amateur theatrical society. Established in October 2007 by a group of villagers and other locals, the group has held three productions a year in Standlake village hall on a newly renovated and modified stage.
Standlake is surrounded by numerous artificial lakes dug for the commercial extraction of gravel. Many are now stocked with fish and popular with anglers; others are used for aquatic sports such as windsurfing.
For a period of his childhood Thom Yorke, lead singer of British band, Radiohead, lived in Standlake and attended Standlake C of E Primary School.
Poet and Writer Pam Ayres resided in Standlake.
It is rumoured that David Hasselhoff frequently visited Hardwick Parks during the height of his fame in the mid nineties. He is quoted as saying that this was his favourite campsite outside of Germany.
- "Area: Standlake (Parish): Key Figures for 2011 Census: Key Statistics". Neighbourhood Statistics. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 23 February 2015.
- Crossley & Currie 1996, pp. 171–180.
- Crossley & Currie 1996, pp. 180–183.
- Open Domesday Online: Brighthampton, accessed January 2017
- Crossley & Currie 1996, pp. 183–185.
- Sherwood & Pevsner 1974, p. 778.
- Crossley & Currie 1996, pp. 197–203.
- Sherwood & Pevsner 1974, p. 777.
- Davies, Peter. "Standlake S Giles". Dove's Guide for Church Bell Ringers. Central Council of Church Bell Ringers. Retrieved 28 August 2015.
- Crossley & Currie 1996, pp. 203–204.
- Curtis, Brian. "Standlake". Oxfordshire Churches & Chapels. Archived from the original on 21 February 2015.
- Crossley & Currie 1996, pp. 185–195.
- "National Mills Weekend – Past Years' Events". Windmill World.
- The Black Horse, Standlake
- The Bell
- Crossley & Currie 1996, pp. 204–205.
- Standlake CE Primary School Archived 24 September 2009 at the Wayback Machine.
- Standlake Arena
- Oxford Downs Cricket Club
- The Oxford Times Cherwell Cricket League: League Clubs
- The Standlake Players
- Standlake Village Hall
- Townley, Simon C. (ed.); Colvin, Christina; Cragoe, Carol; Ortenberg, Veronica; Peberdy, R.B.; Selwyn, Nesta; Williamson, Elizabeth (2006). A History of the County of Oxford. Victoria County History. 15: Carterton, Minster Lovell and Environs: Bampton Hundred (Part Three). Woodbridge: Boydell & Brewer for the Institute of Historical Research. pp. 171–205. ISBN 978-1-90435-606-6.
- Sherwood, Jennifer; Pevsner, Nikolaus (1974). Oxfordshire. The Buildings of England. Harmondsworth: Penguin Books. pp. 776–778. ISBN 0-14-071045-0.
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