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Sunday, 12 February 2012 18:50

Oaksey - OPC Vacancy

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Oaksey - All Saints Oaksey - All Saints

Oaksey Village Gallery

Contiguous Parishes (our neighbours)

Crudwell - Kemble - Minety - Poole Keynes - Somerford Keynes


Websites of Interest

GenUKI - For information on Oaksey and Wiltshire.
Wiltshire & Swindon History Centre - The Wiltshire County Archives for all historical documents and the place to obtain original copies.
Wiltshire Community History - Historical information for parishes within the Wiltshire County jurisdiction.
British History Online - For information on Oaksey and Wiltshire.
Duncan and Mandy's Website - Information and photographs of All Saints Church.
Warning to Sabbath Breakers - Photographs and information of Wall Paintings.
St Christopher - Photographs and information of Wall Paintings.
Oaksey Village - Website for community news.


The Parish Church of All Saints

All Saints Gallery

The church of All Saints stands beside the main street of the village.  It is a grade 1 listed building and is principally of ashlar construction with castellated parapets.   The square tower contains a peal of six bells, made by Thomas Rudhall of Gloucester and installed in 1773. It is also fitted with a clock, which is believed to commemorate a former rector who died in 1882.

Elements of the church in the south porch, chancel and tower suggest the original construction to have been in the 13th century or possibly earlier.  Other elements indicate modifications taking place in the 14th and 15th centuries. In 1933 a series of large murals were uncovered.  These have been dated to the 15th century.

More information and many photographs of the church and the wall paintings can be found on the websites listed above. 

The church register dates from 1670.  The living is a rectory and now forms part of the Braydon Brook Benefice which covers the parishes of Ashley, Crudwell, Charlton, Hankerton, Minety and Oaksey.

Churchyard Memorial Survey Incumbents 1465-2014 Church Description 1825
Parochial Church Meeting 1936 Church Windows 1936  

Parish Register Transcripts


1604-1699           1705-1749          1750-1799           1800-1837 


1605-1699          1700-1749          1750-1799          1800-1837


1604-1699           1700-1749            1750-1799            1800-1837 

Parish Registers held at WSHC

Baptisms 1670-1870
Marriages 1671-1981
Burials 1670-1922
BTs 1838-1897 are held at Bristol Record Office


Parish History

The parish includes the tything of Flintham & Wick.     Oaksey is, and has always been, a predominantly farming parish, and covers about 1,800 acres.  It is one of the most northerly in Wiltshire and is approximately 2.4 miles north to south and 2.6 miles east to west.  Oaksey village lies at the centre of the parish and is equidistant, about 5 miles, from Malmesbury to the south west and Cirencester to the north east.  The Cotswold Water Park is just to the east.     Evidence of early occupation is scarce.  A Bronze Age axe has been found.  It is believed that the motte and bailey structure, the remains of which are now known as Norwood Castle, had been built to protect a 13th century manor house which stood near the church until the late 16th century.     The parish appears in the Domesday Book as Wochesie and is shown to be held by Brihtric or Beorhtric, a Saxon lord.  Eventually, via the de Bohun family, Oaksey became part of the Duchy of Lancaster under Henry IV, and in due course his successors. It remained as such until the 17th century when it came into the control of Sir Edward  Poole.     The Cheltenham and Great Western Union Railway built a line through the parish in 1841.     The regular fox hunting meetings at Oaksey started in the early 19th century and led on to the Oaksey races which took place over a three and a half mile course on Park Farm where there is now an airfield.  These races attracted many national riders and continued until World War I.     In the late 1930's Oaksey temporarily became home to part of the Cotswold Bruderhof Commune, many members  of which were Germans who had fled Nazi oppression.     During the 2nd World War Oaksey was bombed at least twice. In 1941 a large bomb fell near the railway bridge but did not explode, and, at another time, five small bombs fell across the village. One set fire to a tree in a field and another landed on the railway bridge.  In her book "Gallipot Eyes", a diary of life in Oaksey, Elspeth Huxley recorded Oaksey's pride in having been an enemy target and how the incident excited bitter jealousy among the citizens of Crudwell, who took solace in the thought that, while the bombs might have fallen on or near Oaksey, they had been released over Crudwell.      Today Oaksey is a very friendly village with a thriving community spirit, which is witnessed by its comprehensive and particularly informative website.     Oaksey's population has remained remarkably steady over two centuries. There have been temporary fluctuations such as in 1841 when many railway construction workers , some with their families, added to Oaksey's population for the duration of the line construction. Lately there has been an increase in house building.

  Population Figures & Other Information Domesday Book 1086
Parish News 1850-1899 Parish News 1900-1935 Parish News 1936-1948
Cotswold Bruderhof 1939-1941 Links with Royalty 1944  

Civil Registration

1837 - April 1936 Malmesbury Registration District
April 1936 - Present Chippenham Registration District


Buildings and Land

Oaksey Park House was built in the 17th century, by the Poole family, to fill the role of manor house. It changed its name to Oaksey House in 1773 and to Oaksey Manor 1938, before being demolished in 1956 after a short period as a hotel.     There are records of mills existing in Oaksey at various times in its history, from 1086 until the last mill, the one on a leat of Flagham Brook, was demolished at some time before 1773.     In 1975 the majority of the village, not including the new council houses at Bendybow, became a conservation area.


The farming activity in the parish has been carried out principally on the following properties. Hill Farm, Oaksey Moor and Lower Farms, which were combined to become Lower Moor Farm, Court Farm, Church Farm, Clattinger Farm, Dean Farm, Park Farm, Street Farm and Sodom Farm.

Farm Ownership 1716-1986


Inclosure Notice 1802


Owners of Land 1873


Maps of Oaksey                Ordnance Survey Map 1816 

Property Sales

Property Sales 1786-1849          Manor of Oaksey 1789          Property Sales 1850-1899          Property Sales 1900-1948

Public Houses

The Wheatsheaf Inn is a long standing part of Oaksey's community. It is thought to be at least 600 years old and, like the majority of Oaksey houses, is built of Cotswold stone. In the last few years The Wheatsheaf has gained an excellent reputation for the quality of its catering.


Crime and Legal Matters

In the 13th century the Earl of Hereford and Essex governed Oaksey via the frankenpledge system, whereby the inhabitants were held jointly responsible for problems with maintenance of boundaries, watercourses, roads and encroachment on common land.  By the 1700's this had evolved into the manorial court system, which dealt primarily with copy-holder business.

Inmates of Gloucester Gaol 1815-1879 Crime Reports 1800-1899 Water Against Spirit 1843
Crime Reports  1900-1949    

Court Cases

Daniel Rose 1844 Jones & Smith 1858 Marsh & Ricketts 1858
George West 1865 John Gardener 1867 & 1868 Lewis Jones 1877
Gardner Bros, Baker & Kent 1879 William Gardner 1879 William Jaques 1879
Walter Baker 1884 Linda Mail 1886 Charles Mayo 1889
Albert Kent 1895 Grace Sole 1902 Street, Townsend, Morse & Beale 1910
Biggs & Gleed 1923 William Leyfield 1924 Frederick Kent 1929
Alan Taylor 1930 William Jones 1935 Frederick Lock 1936
George Todd 1938 Cecil Woodward 1940 Thomas Pendlebury 1941
James Renton 1941 Joan Robinson 1943 Sir Geoffrey Lawrence 1944
Thomas Brown 1946    

Claims Court

Claims Court 1855-1869 Various Persons v Telling 1886 Millard v Prater 1888
Baker v Cove 1889 Washbourne v Broome 1895 Gillett & Co v Faithfull 1904-6
Faithfull v Cox 1906 Pullin v Faithfull 1912 Beale v Baker 1914
Gould v Hawkins 1927 Drainage Board v Wilson 1936  



Post Office 1855 Post Office 1859         Post Office 1875 Kellys 1895 Kellys 1903
Kellys 1915 North Wilts & District 1917 Kellys 1920 North Wilts & District 1920 Swindon & District 1928
Kellys 1939 Taylors 1941      



There have been junior schools in Oaksey since the early 19th century through to the present day. Since 1854 the school has been sited adjacent to the church and currently has about 90 pupils. The nearest secondary school is at Malmesbury.    Read about Oaksey Schools here.


Emigration and Migration

Out of Parish Marriages 1632-1835


Employment and Business

Throughout its history Oaksey has been a mixed farming, dairy and arable, area. The proportion of arable land in cultivation has gradually increased over time, but, owing to evermore mechanisation, there are now very few agricultural jobs in the parish.

Bristol Register 1657 Apprentice Register 1725-1760 Newspaper Advertisements 1800-1899
Situations Wanted and Vacant 1876-1948 Newspaper Advertisements 1900-1949 Report of Strike 1930
Land Workers Charter 1931    

Miscellaneous Documents


Non Conformity and Other Places of Worship


As early as 1802 a room in the possession of Joseph Brown was certified for the use of Independents in Oaksey. This was followed, in 1812, by a house belonging to Thomas Wilton and in, 1822, in a house occupied by Rev J W Lowrie

Moravian Church Members

John Frey 1721-1777

Primitive Methodists

In 1812 the dwelling house of John Earl was certified for Methodist worship.  Later Methodists from Brinkworth came to the village to encourage residents to become Methodists and, in 1838, they certified a house belonging to William Reynolds.  The growing number of Methodists had a strong presence in the village and at one time outnumbered the peopled who went to the Church. A Chapel in the west of the parish was built in 1842 and in 1851 it was attended by 101 people during the afternoon service. The chapel had to be rebuilt in 1874.  After World War II the presence of the Methodists reduced and the chapel was first used for storing hay, about 1956, before it was converted into a private residence.          Primitive Methodist Synod 1918


People and Parish Notables


Richard Hawkins 1865           William Sansom 1830                

Census Returns Transcripts

1841          1851          1861           1871           1881          1891           1901           1911

Elections, Polls and Voters Lists

Poll of Freeholders 1772 Poll Book 1818 Voters List 1832 Voters Lists Revisions 1843 Voters List 1865
Electoral List 1868 MP Nominations 2015 MP Nominations 2017  

Family Notices

1800-1849           1850-1899           1900-1949

Funeral Reports

William H Westlake 1930 Mrs Rich 1931 Anna Hanks 1934
Alice Jennings 1935 Charles W Chambers 1935 George Butcher 1936
Edith Punter 1936 Henry Timms 1936  William Boulton 1937
Walter Waldron 1937 Emily Hazell 1939 John C Murray 1939
Stanley H Westlake 1942    

Inquest Reports

Reports 1800-1849 Sarah Andrews 1852 John Rogers 1854
Isaac White 1881 Thomas Hiscock 1877 Agnes Mustoe 1870
George Ricketts 1876 Thomas Cove 1877 Catherine Barnes 1878
Eleanor Weeks 1888 Walter Butcher 1897 William Leyfield 1905
Ralph Faber 1909 Arthur Buye 1943 Arthur Jolley 1947


John Johnson 1804 Rev F P Johnson 1882 Rev W A Norris 1889
Charles Howse 1896 Rev Joseph Storr 1923 Edward Heavens 1930
Robert Warner 1930 John Eden 1931 Mrs E Mayo 1935
Rev Sidney Hinkes 2006 Jacqueline Kent 2007  

Parish Notables

Inhabitants of Oaksey, notable for various reasons, include Geoffrey Lawrence, the first Lord Oaksey, John Lawrence or John Oaksey, the second Lord Oaksey, both of whom lived at Hill Farm.  Inez Broom, later Craven, later Mundy, was a one time occupier of Flintham House.  The author Elspeth Huxley had a home at Woodfolds for many years.

Samuel Andrews Inez Broom Rev W F Gover
John Hitchings Elspeth Huxley Geoffrey Lawrence
John Oaksey    


Steeplechase Meeting Notice 1888                  Sporting News 1900-1949


Falstone Day Book 1645-1653

Uncategorised People Items

Parishioners Donations for St. Paul's Church, London 1678               Temperance Movement 1858-1873                United Patriots 1880-1881

Wedding Reports 

Burfitt & Carter 1924 Cooper & Higgs 1935 Wilkins & Balker 1936
Read & Scaysbrook 1937 Morgan & Pendlebury 1938 Murray & Hardinge 1943
Dundas & Lawrence 1950    


Poor Law, Charity and the Workhouse

Prior to the Malmesbury Poor Law Union coming into existence on 4th December 1835, poor relief in Oaksey was handled within the parish.   The new Malmesbury workhouse, designed to accommodate 250 inmates, was built on a site in Sherston Road Malmesbury in 1838 at a cost of £3,100, to integrate the poor relief for 25 local parishes including Oaksey.  In the 1833-1835 period the average poor rate expenditure was £8,720 or 13s 4d per head of the population of the union district. At the end of their life as a workhouse the buildings were used as flats but were eventually demolished in 1971.

Expenditure on Relief 1775-1834 Election of Guardians 1837 Tenders for Medical Service 1837
Election of Guardians 1839 Election of Guardians 1844 Election of Guardians 1860
Nomination of Guardians 1886    



Probate Notices 1600-1649 National Probate Index 1858-1966 Probate Notices 1900-1949

Parishioners Wills

Robert Adamson Proved 1818 Thomas Coxe Proved 1718 Thomas Coxe Proved 1762 Henry Golsey Proved 1711 John Hawkins Proved 1815
William Henderson Proved 1830 John Holtham Proved 1787 Ellen Kilmister Proved 1849 William Maskelyne Proved 1840 Richard Matthews Proved 1770
Ann Maysey Proved 1780  Benjamin Maysey Proved 1778 Mary Oatridge Proved 1836 John Orchard Proved 1729 Thomas Whitfield Proved 1833



War, Conflict and Military Matters

War Memorial & Military Photo Gallery

There is a wall plaque in All Saints Church commemorating the parish fallen.  

John Herbert 1817-1839 World War I Casualties Soldiers Who Died in WWI in Calne & District Casualty Lists;
Memorial Dedication in New Oaksey Village Hall - The Rest 2001 Why the Poppy  Roll of Honour Plaques


World War II Casualties          Home Guards 1940-1944          Bomb Disposal 1948 



Much of this page was submitted by David Palmer as OPC for the parish.  Sadly David passed away in December 2015 but he has left a fantastic legacy to this page.



Read 12928 times Last modified on Monday, 29 July 2019 14:45

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