Coxwell Street & Coxwell Road

Faringdon Streets CoxwellCoxwell Street heads south-west from the roundabout at the end of Marlborough Street. At what was the Eagle public house, before the junction with Coxwell Gardens opposite, it changes its name to Coxwell Road, earlier called Shrivenham Road, both nearby villages along the way. Faringdon’s last surviving toll gate was probably situated at this same point along this road, it being a turnpike road to Bristol, Bath and Somerset, whose local upkeep had to be paid for.

This is one of the roads that made Faringdon the important five-way road junction of the past. It was once part of the main road (A420) from Oxford to Swindon, and onwards to Marlborough and Salisbury or Bath and Bristol before the bypass was built in 1979.

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

See Coxwell Street Shops & Businesses for a brief history of occupation. Also Burtwell & Drew, the electrical goods shop at 19 Coxwell Street has its own page.

Views of Coxwell Street

Coxwell Street C1910Coxwell Street 1912

1912. The crossroads at the bottom end of Coxwell Street. First photo – looking up the street. The ‘white’ buildings on the corner with Station Road on the left have now been demolished. The darker building further up the street is #3 the current cycle shop (photos below). On the right is the Methodist Church then the Duke of York public house. Second photo – looking back into town. On the left is the Methodist Church next to the Duke of York public house, licensee Michael Giannadrea. The inn was demolished and the new United Church now stands there. The left-hand turning is Gravel Walk, on the far side of it can be seen the White Hart with its inn sign standing on the corner. The road facing is Marlborough St. showing how the road is cut away at Arthurs Hill. To the right is Station Road, which led to the railway station.

Coxwell Street 3 19941994. Looking back towards Station Road, ‘Le Salon’ at #3 Coxwell Street was originally a butcher shop and has changed many times since – various hair salons, a party shop, a bride shop, and now since about 2018 a bike shop.

Coxwell Street 5 7 1990Coxwell Street 3 7 2018

1990 & 2018. Quarry Engineering on the left through the iron gates; now the new terraced houses in the second photo, which are addressed as #7-9 Nichol Court. Previous owners were Ballard & Sons, blacksmith and wheelwright, who occupied it from at least 1895. The large white house at #7 in both photos is Ballards Cottage. The Ballards were followed by Frank Lane, then D.W. Lansdown, before Quarry Engineering took it over. The shop at #3 was originally a butcher shop and has changed many times since – various hair salons, party shop, bride shop, and now a bike shop.

Nichol Court 1991Nichol Court 2000

1991 & 2000. Just beyond Ballards Cottage shown in the previous photos is another entrance to Ballard’s yard, which has now become Nichol Court. The old building, which is attached to the right of Ballards Cottage has been converted into homes. They are addressed as #10-11 Nichol Court, and new houses were built in the yard behind.

Nearby was the site of Faringdon’s last Toll Gate which was demolished when a haulier was driving home from Swindon late at night. The man was very drunk and fell asleep on the cart and so the horse failed to stop and walked straight through the Toll Gate.

Coxwell Street 16 10 19951995. On the opposite side of the street just past the church is what used to be the Gardeners Arms at #10 . It closed before the 1980s and is now two private houses. Further up the street is an Indian restaurant and Pianoforte,a piano shop where a sports shop used to be.

Pink Elephant 19941994. A little further up the street. The Pink Elephant public house on the right at #40 Coxwell Street was originally The Queens Arms. It became The Riddle for a short time then closed down in the late 1990s. It then became Pianoforte, a piano shop and the building was also given the name ‘Ivory House’. In 2014 it was converted to a private house.

Knapp Advert 1894Back in 1894 there was a yard behind the Queens Arms containing the Thames Valley Iron Works, which was run by L.R. Knapp & Co. A big company in Faringdon at this time specialising in the supply of farm implements.

The Eagle Inn, at #56 can be seen at the end of the street. It is the last property in Coxwell Street as hereafter it becomes Coxwell Road. The Eagle closed down in the 2000s and was converted to a private house.

Coxwell Street Eagle C1910c.1910. Further up the street looking back towards town. The Eagle, #56 Coxwell Street is on the left. The Queens Arms is half way down on the left at #40. The Gardeners Arms is further down at the bottom of the street. The man on the horse is the local doctor, Dr. Kennard, accompanied by his faithful dog. This dog stayed with the horse whilst the doctor was making his calls, and allowed no one to approach the horse. Note how high the pavements are from the unmade road. Children used to sit on the pavement and dangle their legs over the edge. The children in the picture are dressed in the costume of the day. Note the breeches and caps worn by the boys and the gleaming white apron and hat worn by the girl on the left. The Pink Elephant became The Riddle for a short time then closed down in the 1990s. The Eagle closed down in the 2000s. Both are now private houses. Coxwell Street now becomes Coxwell Road.

Coxwell Street 31 35Looking away from town, the Eagle pub sign can just be seen on the right and houses #31-35 on the left before the old wall. This is the end of Coxwell Street and beginning of Coxwell Road. At the end of the old stone wall on the left, which is a lot longer than it looks, there used to be access to Eagles Coaches then Barnes Coaches Ltd, which was located behind the houses up there facing the road. Coxwell Gardens (sheltered housing) has now been developed on that site (see below). What was left of the stone wall was replaced with brick at some time before 1982 but that fell down and is now a low wicket fence set further back off the road and covered with roses bushes. There is a car park and garages directly behind for some of the new houses at the end of the Eagles housing development accessed from Station Road.

Views of Coxwell Road

Coxwell Gardens 19941994. This is the first property on the left in Coxwell Road, a new sheltered housing estate called Coxwell Gardens. The site was previously used by Eagles Coaches then Barnes Coaches Ltd.

Coxwell Road Vet SurgeryFurther up the road on the right, before you reach the old health centre, is the Danetree Veterinary Surgery at #14 Coxwell Road.

Coxwell Rd Cottage Hosp C1905Coxwell Rd Cottage Hosp C1900

c1900. Faringdon Cottage Hospital on the left of the Coxwell Road looking back into town. It later became the Health Centre for local GP’s until a new premises was built towards the end of Park Road; then it was converted into flats. Note the unmade road with the horse and trap approaching. There were Tea Gardens on the opposite side of the road at this time, now all large detached houses.

The Cottage Hospital was erected in 1892. Captain William Dundas initiated public subscriptions to help build it and contributed a considerable amount of the money required. The first Matron was Miss Rosa Broughton. The medical officers were J.P. Lockwood, H.D. Ley and C. Spackman; the consulting surgeon was H.P. Symonds from Oxford. The hospital was comprised of two wards of two beds each, one for women and one for men; two private wards of one bed each, one male and one female; matron’s sitting room and an office. A mortuary was added the following year and a couple of years later there was an operating room and a probationer’s bedroom added. The first major operation was for Mrs Elliott, wife of the Saw Mills proprietor, who had a burst appendix. A well-loved matron, in later years, was Gertrude Taylor, sister to Percy Taylor the butcher.

Coxwell Rd Highworth Rd 19821982. Coxwell Road looking away from town from the corner of Highworth Road. The four old terraced cottages (No’s 36-42) on the right appear on a map of 1842. On the opposite side of the road there was just one building and open fields. The next junction up the road on the left is Fernham Road where a service station could then be seen on the corner at this time.

Coxwell Rd 48 44c1950s. Just past the four old terraced cottages shown above are No’s 48-44 Coxwell Road, the semi-detached property shown here on the right. The house, No 48 on the left was called “Kosykot” and can also be seen on the right in the photo below of the old police house at No 50 to which it was attached. A plan of the land in 1924 shows that the house was owned by Hon Mrs R Craven. It was demolished around the 1960s to be replaced by the new detached house shown to the right in the newer photo below.

Coxwell Rd Police House C1910Coxwell Rd Police House 2021

c1910 & 2021. The old police house at 50 Coxwell Road, which is directly opposite the entrance to what later became a service station and now Clock Tower Court. There is a date stone, which is now difficult to read, but according to a previous owner showed that it was built in 1865. This followed the opening of the police station in Coach Lane in 1858. The sign above the door and almost hidden by the bush says ‘COUNTY POLICE’. The local ‘Bobby’ would often be seen on his bike, cycling all the way through the town on his way to the Police Station in Coach Lane, way up London Street – nearly a mile distant. A plan of the land in 1924 shows that the house was owned by Captain Wrisberg. In 2021, after some years of neglect and sold with an accepted application for its demolition, it is currently being renovated by the new owners.

The house attached on the right in the old photo is No.48 and is shown more fully in the photo above it. The outside wall of No.50 shows signs of that previously attached house having been demolished and the newer photo here shows the new detached house that was built in its place.

Coxwell Rd Fernham Rd 19531953. A little further up and on the opposite side of the road to the old police house, arriving at the corner with Fernham Road where the service station would later be built. The tall chimney of the dairy and the Folly can be seen in the background across the field. The white terraced houses have just been built in the new Marlborough Gardens development.

Coxwell Road Garage 19861986. The Eagle Motors Service Station, then on the corner with Fernham Road at this time. It was very busy when all traffic passed through Faringdon but when the bypass was opened in 1979, the trade dropped away. By 1991 it had moved to the end of Park Road and the site was redeveloped for new housing – Clock Tower Court..

White Horse Dairy 1962 3During the severe winter of 1962-3, the White Horse Dairy had to hire tractors and drivers to enable the milk deliveries to get through to the outlying villages. This was a Sunday morning delivery of milk for the dairy outside Eagle Motors Service Station on the corner of Coxwell Road and Fernham Road. Bill Carter is driving his tractor that he used on his market garden. Ann Carter (no relation) is behind him and her husband Jimmy is sitting on the trailer.

Coxwell Rd Fernham Rd 1991Coxwell Rd Fernham Rd C1991

1991. Looking up then looking back at the Fernham Road turning. The service station is now demolished and the site redeveloped for new housing – Clock Tower Court. Fernham Road leads to the secondary school, leisure centre, and Coxwell Lodge Nursing Home, but no longer to the village of Fernham, as it was cut off by the new bypass in 1979.

Coxwell Rd Coleshill Drive 20002000. Beyond the turning to Fernham Road, at the top of Red House Hill and on the right, is the new Badgers Walk housing estate. The entrance road, previously a track known as ‘Badgers Walk’ has been named Coleshill Drive. The road has risen 89 feet (27m or a 5 storey house) from the brook under the road in ‘The Narrows’. The road here had to be closed for 4 weeks to lower the hump at the new site entrance and a bungalow was also demolished.

Badgers Walk 1999
1999. Badgers Walk before the housing estate
Reg Purbricks House 2000
2000. Winslow Cottage, Reg Purbrick’s house on Coxwell Road before demolition for the new Coleshill Drive housing estate.
Red House 2000
2000. Directly opposite on the left side of the road is ‘The Red House’, named on a map of 1876 and which gave ‘Red House Hill’ its name..
Stallard Close 2020
2020. Going down the hill on the left is a new housing development on Stallard Close.
Wearn Road 2020
2020. Immediately followed by Wearn Road, another new housing development.
Faringdon Fields 2020
2020. Then Faringdon Fields followed by Fernham Fields; very large housing estates almost finished.
Fern Hill Gardens
2020. On the right side of the road is Fern Hill Gardens, another very large estate almost finished.
Milestone Coxwell Road 2021
2021. Further down the road on the right, before the turning into Steeds Farm is an old milestone marked Faringdon 1 Swindon 11. Now half buried, unwanted and forgotten.
Coxwell Rd Great Coxwell 1978
1978. About half a mile further down was the turning off to Great Coxwell before the A420 bypass was built the following year. It is now closed to traffic and overgrown.

Researched by Ian Lee, January 2020.

Page last updated: 15-10-2021 Copyright © 2018-2022 Ian Lee