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Banburyshire Rambles Photo-Journal:

Banburyshire’s Ancient Sites

Landscape image, ‘The King, transfixed’
‘The King Stone’

A guide to Banburyshire’s ‘Ancient Sites’ – the standing stones, earthworks, historic features, and sacred sites, that are part of the landscape of North Oxfordshire and the surrounding hills. Each site has a dedicated page with descriptions, pictures, maps, and links to other sources of information.

Landscape image, ‘A Frosty Dawn at Rainsborough Camp’
‘A Frosty Dawn at Rainsborough Camp

This section of the Banburyshire Rambles Journal brings together some of my ‘best’ photos and my past walks to document one of a little known gems in this part of the world; the large number of standing stones, earthworks, Medieval churches, and other ancient sites and trackways in north and north-west Oxfordshire.

For a more detailed explanation of the guide and its purpose, goto the About the Guide page.

A list of recent updates to the Banburyshire Ancient Sites collection:

Landscape image, ‘Minster Lovell Hall’ Banburyshire’s Ancient Sites, Beltane 2022:

Minster Lovell Hall

Minster Lovell Hall has a surreal quality; especially if the weather adds to the atmosphere. It’s a classic ‘ruin’, but at the same time you can see that centuries of less reverent visitors have scrawled graffiti over many parts of it (a practise common before modern times). And while today it seems a backwater, the history of the site ties it to some major events in history.

Landscape image, ‘Banbury Lane Bridge’, 3rd September 2012 Banburyshire’s Ancient Sites, Beltane 2022:

The Cherwell Bridge, Banbury Lane

Many people don’t know it’s there: A Medieval stone bridge; buried beneath a Victorian brick bridge; that most travel over every day without a thought. It is one of the oldest standing structures in the town, and directly related to the story of the town’s historic development.

Banburyshire’s Ancient Trackways: “You can go anywhere from Shutford Five-Ways”, 31st August 2013 Banburyshire’s Ancient Sites, Eostre 2022:

Ogilby’s Banbury-Campden Road

Though part of Ogilby’s first road atlas of England, today its an almost invisible-at-points route that rambles through the hills to the west of Banbury – not becoming an established main road again until it descends in to Warwickshire. From Banbury until Sibford Heath, it’s a route to escape the fast-moving world – not becoming an established main road again until it descends in to Warwickshire.

Banburyshire’s Ancient Trackways: ‘A Storm Gathers Over the Old Salt Road to Buckingham (thumbnail)’, 25th September 2021 Banburyshire’s Ancient Trackways, Eostre 2022:

Ogilby’s Buckingham-Bridgenorth Road

Major roads seem so permanent, so immovable – and yet this route shows how history has a tendency to shift roads over time, rather like rivers in a valley meander on their course. This route was Ogilby’s main route from London to Banbury, Stratford and Bridgenorth, yet today this ancient route has been bypassed almost completely by the modern world.

Banburyshire’s Ancient Sites: ‘The Wroxton Fingerpost’, image 1 Banburyshire’s Ancient Sites, Imbolic 2022:

‘The Wroxton Fingerpost’

Most people speed past it along the A422 Banbury to Stratford road. Even if they notice the monument, they may not realise what it is. When you get up close to ‘The Wroxton Fingerpost’, though, if you really think about it, it’s telling you a story which – in the modern context – seems to make no sense.

Landscape image, ‘Castle Bank in the bare Winter trees’, March 2015 Banburyshire’s Ancient Sites, November 2021:

‘Castle Bank Enclosure’

The remains of a large, ancient enclosure sit above a large groups of springs in a local hidden valley. Though not well preserved, it’s a lovely location to pause and take-in the surrounding landscape.

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