Station Road

Faringdon Streets StationThe start of Butts Road (now Park Road) was renamed Station Road when the railway came to Faringdon in 1864. The station closed in 1963 and the only part of Station Road now remaining is the very short section from the Marlborough Street/ Gravel Walk crossroads up to The Swan public house at Christopher Square on the corner with Bromsgrove.

See Faringdon Streets for an indexed list of all streets in Faringdon.

A Tour of Station Road in the 1900s

Station Road C1988Station Road C1992

c1988 & 1992/3. Looking from the top of Marlborough Street. This section up to The Swan public house, the tall building on its own in the background, is still called Station Road. Turners Fishing Tackle is on the right at #4, now VIP Hair & Beauty Studio, and previously Watts (greengrocer), then Westall (baker). Next door is the new purpose-built Faringdon Fire Station with its practice tower being built, after it moved from a temporary location in Marlborough Street in 1961. On this site in the 1890’s there were extra classrooms for the school in the Lechlade Road, which were later sold to a corn merchant. In the 1930s Swindon Co-Operative Society had a hall built behind Mr Indge’s shop. The hall was still being used during the day to take the overflow from the primary school in 1960. It was also used almost every evening for meetings. Beyond are 5 terraced cottages (shown below). On the opposite side of the road used to be W. Absolom (draper) and before that a coal yard.

Station Road C1994Station Road C19951994/5. Closer views of the terraced cottages beyond Faringdon Fire Station with The Swan across the road in the background.

Boffin Butchers C1925c1925 Somewhere on Station Road, probably opposite the new fire station and the above cottages, was Boffin’s butcher shop. Standing outside are Thomas Boffin and Lovell Drawbridge. Later the site was demolished in order to widen the road and the shop was moved next to the White Hart pub on Gravel Walk. Then further redevelopment in 1977 moved them on to London Street.

There were a lot of other old buildings opposite what is now the new fire station; all were demolished in order to widen the road for better access to the new bypass. Another one was Frank Lane’s Agricultural Engineering workshops which occupied an old WW1 hangar. See aerial photo below.

Faringdon Aerial Sw 1961 1961. Station Road, in the bottom left, with the brand new Fire Station just built on the left and across the road is the old WW1 hangar and other shops mentioned above, all now demolished.

Christopher Square C1900c1900. Looking left into Bromsgrove from Station Road with the Swan Inn on the right is Christopher Square. The Baptist Chapel is on the far side of the Square. The next tall building to the left that looks like part of the church has since been demolished.

Bromsgrove 19531953. Turning around and looking towards Christopher Square from Bromsgrove. The Swan Hotel is dead ahead. The Baptist Chapel is on the right. A car can be seen passing along Station Road in front of Eagle Motors car repair workshop and stores. This used to be Clare’s Coaches. Tommy Clare started up with an ex-Army lorry at the end of WWI doing haulage and later on branched out into coach travel. The buildings have been demolished and the side-road, now could simply Eagles leads to a new housing estate. The house to the right of the garage, with the two upper windows visible, was Elliott’s sweet shop, which was run by Mrs Long. It is the last one on a row of old cottages and had to be demolished in order to widen the road. What was left was made into a small public garden (see below).

Swan Hotel 19531953. Back on Station Road. The Swan Hotel marks the start of Butts Road, which by now had been renamed Park Road. The street is very quiet and lacking in vehicles – only 1 in 10 households in the UK owned a car at this time. In the 1970s, it all had to be straightened up and made wider for when it became a main route to the new bypass. The walled garden to the right of the Swan Hotel had to be moved back. Eagle Motors opposite is boarded up and destined to become the Eagles. The sweet shop sticking out from the right is definitely in the way and therefore just had to go.

Continue with A Tour of Park Road in the 1900s

 


The following shops and businesses were advertised in Station Road, Faringdon in the years stated:

ABSOLOM W., draper, Station Rd, FA 1907, 1914, 1915, 1919. #1?
EAGLE COACHES, T.H.Clarke, FA 1931. Eagle Line, Station Road, coach operator, FV 1972, 1973.
EAGLE MOTORS (FARINGDON) LTD., Station Rd, general engineers, FDS 1949, 1952, 1953
THE PORTWELL PRESS, Station Road, printers, FDS 1978
WATTS HENRY, baker (greengrocer?), FA 1904. #4
WESTALL WILLIAM, baker, Station Rd, FA 1902 was taken over by his son George. #4

Media Key: FA = Faringdon Advertiser; FDS = Faringdon Dramatic Society; FV = Faringdon Venture; FF = Faringdon Folly

Station Rd Absolom Advert 1907Station Rd Westall Advert 1902


References:
1. The Changing Faces of Faringdon and Surrounding Villages – Bk 1 p83. By Rosemary Church, Jim Brown, Millie Bryan and Beryl Newman. Robert Boyd Publications.
2. Faringdon Advertiser 24th July 1931 p4 – The New Faringdon Hall.

Researched by Ian Lee, December 2019.