Great Coxwell is situated 2 miles south-west of Faringdon. The 2001 Census recorded the parish’s population as 274. Cocheswelle is recorded in the Domesday Book of 1086, and later records spell it as Great Cokewell, Cokeswell, Cokeswylle and Cokyswell. The name possibly derives from the OE/Anglo-Saxon cock or coch, which means ‘from the hills’, by a family that took that name and had a well (wella ‘spring or stream’) here. The village lies at the head of a tributary of the River Cole, which drains into the Thames just below Lechlade.
An aerial photograph of the village taken from somewhere above the church. In the centre of the photograph, facing the camera, is a house called Crowdys. To the left of Crowdys is Green’s farmhouse and then the Royal Oak public house (now closed). Behind the pub is Pear Tree Farm.
c.1910. The first building on the left-hand side was, until recently, the village Post Office. At one time it was a public house and the stone flagstones inside showed the wear of having barrels dragged through into the tap room.
c.1935. Pear Tree farmhouse. The strange looking car in the garden is Alldays and Onion’s, but at this time it belonged to a man from London. The church tower of St. Mary’s can be seen in the background.
c.1905. The Great Barn belonging to the Cistercian monks who lived in the farmhouse. It was a Grange belonging to Beaulieu Abbey. The doorway on the side is the original one, the other is a modern alteration. The doorways at the ends of the building were inserted to accommodate the use of the wagons when the building was used as a farm barn. More on The Great Barn…
Photos and text scanned directly from The Changing Faces of Faringdon and Surrounding Villages – Book 1 p102-104 by Rosemary Church, Jim Brown, Millie Bryan and Beryl Newman. Robert Boyd Publications 1999 – now out of print.