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Warborough SaintLaurence SouthElevation.JPG
St. Laurence's parish church
Warborough is located in Oxfordshire
Warborough shown within Oxfordshire
Area 6.95 km2 (2.68 sq mi)
Population 940 (parish, including Shillingford) (2001 census)[1]
• Density 135/km2 (350/sq mi)
OS grid reference SU5993
Civil parish
  • Warborough
Shire county
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town Wallingford
Postcode district OX10
Dialling code 01865
Police Thames Valley
Fire Oxfordshire
Ambulance South Central
EU Parliament South East England
UK Parliament
Website Warborough Parish Council
List of places
51°38′20″N 1°08′13″W / 51.639°N 1.137°W / 51.639; -1.137Coordinates: 51°38′20″N 1°08′13″W / 51.639°N 1.137°W / 51.639; -1.137

Warborough is a village and civil parish in South Oxfordshire, about 2.5 miles (4 km) north of Wallingford and about 9 miles (14 km) south of Oxford. The parish also includes the hamlet of Shillingford, south of Warborough beside the River Thames.


The toponym has evolved over the centuries. A property deed written about 1370 calls the village Wareburewe.[2]

In 1086 Warborough was part of the large royal estate of Benson.[3] The Church of England parish church of Saint Laurence was originally a chapel of the parish of Benson. There is a record of the Empress Matilda giving the benefice of Benson, including chapels at Nettlebed and Warborough, to the Augustinian Abbey at nearby Dorchester in about 1140,[4] and for most of the Middle Ages Warborough was regarded as part of the parish of Dorchester. It remained part of Dorchester peculiar until 1847, but functioned largely as an independent parish from the Middle Ages.[5]

Perhaps the oldest item in the church is the font, which dates from late in the 12th century.[6] The chancel has Decorated Gothic features from the early part of the 13th century, including the east window and one of the windows on the south side. The other windows of the chancel are later Perpendicular Gothic additions. The nave and south transept are Perpendicular features from the 14th century, although the transept arch and window are Decorated. The Gothic Revival architects G.F. Bodley and Thomas Garner restored the chancel in 1881. The Perpendicular Gothic windows in the nave are likewise Victorian.[6]

The bell-tower was rebuilt in 1666. Its two oldest bells were cast in 1618, and two more date from 1675. It had a ring of six bells, but in 1955 two new bells were cast and hung increasing the ring to eight.[7]

Warborough has a number of half-timbered and thatched houses, including a cruck cottage 100 yards (91 m) southwest of the parish church. A date stone on the manor house on the north side of the village green says it was built in 1696. The vicarage is Georgian. Near the cruck cottage is a terrace of four cottages designed in 1952 by the architect Lionel Brett.[8]

The maltster Joseph Tubb (1805–79) lived in Warborough. In 1844–45 he carved the Poem Tree at Wittenham Clumps.[9]

Warborough and Shillingford Festival was founded in 1965. It is held annually in July[10]


The former parish school, now St. Laurence Hall

Warborough has a village shop and a public house: The Six Bells.[11] It used to have a second pub, The Cricketers, but this has now closed.

The village has a pre-school[12] and a Church of England primary school.[13] Most secondary school pupils from the parish attend Wallingford School.

The village green has a playground and sports pitches. Cross Keys and Warborough Football Club plays in Upper Thames Valley League Division I.[14][15]

The Greet Hall hosts the Warborough and Shillingford Women's Institute,[16] a short mat bowls club and a jujitsu club[17] and is the venue for parish council meetings.

13th-century east window of the chancel of St. Laurence' parish church, with 20th-century stained glass memorial to parishioners lost in the First World War


The village and surrounding areas have been the subject of filming locations for the popular crime drama Midsomer Murders.


Sources and further reading[edit]

External links[edit]

Media related to Warborough at Wikimedia Commons

Gallery of St. Laurence's parish church[edit]