Wednesday, February 09, 2011

A Hidden Gem near Cropredy

I have never seen this house from the South Oxford Canal before.

It sits near to the River Cherwell and on the outskirts of the lovely village of Williamscot on the Cropredy to A361 road. From the canal it is visible after Slat Mill Bridge 156 and just before Keens Bridge 155.

Is it that I have never had my "eyes open" before or that the sun caught it so beautifully.

Williamscot House was built in 1568 by Walter Calcott, a successful manufacturer of staples for the wool industry whose firm was based in Hook Norton. It then passed to the Taylor family (C16) and thence to the Lovedays in 1777, via marriage.

The Lodge on the east south east was Grade II listed in February 1988 (on the right of the photo I think).
The orangery (lower building on left) and its attached kitchen wall is also Grade II listed. It was built as a dovecote in the C17 and remodelled in C18. The wall is late C18.

The house is in a parkland setting, with at least 2 ponds and numerous trees. The terraced garden is just visible in the photo.

One famous visitor in the C20 was Winston Churchill who visited several times when he was Chancellor.

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