History Facts: #6 Cistercians, King John, and a Barn!


Yet another piece of history not far from our Lechlade village, the magnificent building which is The Great Coxwell Tithe Barn. 1. Built between 1300-1310 AD, 2. It formed part of the Faringdon estate of Cistercian monks 3. The monks were granted a royal charter earlier by King John of Magna Carta fame in 1203 … Continue reading History Facts: #6 Cistercians, King John, and a Barn!

History Facts: #1 Saxons, Carols and Thieves.


I’m often saddened that our Saxon churches haven’t survived through the centuries, but it’s not so surprising considering that many were either built from wood, or that after 1066 the Norman invaders thought them too simple and rebuilt them. However, the closest we have seen to something resembling such a Saxon church is only around … Continue reading History Facts: #1 Saxons, Carols and Thieves.

Imaginative Ancestry: 3. Caxton’s England, 1422-1491


My ancestors may not have known William Caxton but they sure as heck were influenced by him, as were all of YOUR ancestors if you live in the English speaking world. His machine did more than just print “things”...... it prepared the way for a new language, literary English, in which multiple dialects were unified … Continue reading Imaginative Ancestry: 3. Caxton’s England, 1422-1491

Medieval Marketing, Holy Blood, and the first Brexit!


Henry VIII got a bad press for his regular wife exchange and destruction of the monasteries, but he was on a more significant mission of systematically dismantling an autocratic rule from Europe and removing the scam of holy relics being used to con a gullible public into parting with their cash! A TV programme and a visit to Hailes Abbey brings it all to life.

An English church and a king killer!


There’s far more to this church than meets the eye, both externally and internally. A military college, the English Civil War, two men imprisoned in the same castle .... one a builder of the current church, the other a regicide having signed King Charles I death warrant! But that’s a story for the next post. … Continue reading An English church and a king killer!