Stanford in the Vale

Stanford in the Vale is a village and civil parish in the Vale of White Horse about 3½ miles south-east of Faringdon on the road to Wantage. The population was 2,093 in the 2011 Census. The village is mentioned as Stanford in the Domesday Book (1086). It got its name from ‘stony ford’, which although the River Ock crosses the main road just south but outside of the village, it was probably a crossing-place on Frogmore Brook at the northern end of the village.

The Church is dedicated to St. Denys, parts of it dating to the 12th C. and the 14th C. The village has a Congregational Chapel and a Primitive Methodist Chapel. Manor Farm was built in 1700 and Cox’s Hall in 1690. Stanford Place, situated between Wadley Manor and Bowling Green Farm, was built in the 19th C. Enclosure of the common lands took place in 1783. There were local stone pits producing soft stone used in the repair of the roads. Stanford cheeses were famous locally for being moulded in the shape of a hare lying in its form and covered with chopped sage.

There were once 7 pubs in the village, when it was considerably smaller than it is now. Starting from Faringdon Road by the garage was and still is the Horse and Jockey (1847/Aaron Tarrant – 1931/Leslie Jn Tuckett). Just into the High Street and there was the Bear (1847/William Gardner – 1868/William Gardiner). Up the High Street and branch off at Penstones Farm and down the lane was the Marlborough, then round the “Walls” to the Red Lion (1847/James Richings – 1881/James Dixon), opposite the school. Carry on up the street to the Anchor (1847/William Penstone – 1931/C Robinson), through the bends and almost as you were leaving the village before Bow Road was the the Feathers (Prince of Wales). Turn and head up Cottage Road back towards the main road and there was The Cottage. Only the Horse and Jockey survives now.

Stanford Vine Cottages C1940s
c1940s. Vine Cottages. Miles sweet shop is on the left at the junction.
Stanford Village C1971
c1971. Looking from Church Green. The pub in the distance is the Anchor. The Post Office was run by Mr Williams.
Stanford Harvest Sheepcroft Farm 1905
1905. Harvest at Sheepcroft Farm, Stanford in the Vale. Standing – Nancy Clements (Marlborough Cottage); Mrs G. Leighfield; Mrs Gee; Mrs Tichener (Boar Cottage). Sitting – Tom Stratton (Roadside Cottage); Hungerford Whitfield (The Pound); Bob Smith (Clayponds); Bob Stratton (Clayponds); Dick Leighfield (Rockley Cottage); Bert Belcher (Goosey); George Arnold (Turnpike Cottage on A417); — Leighfield.

1. Photos scanned directly from society archives.
2. The English Place-Name Society search page – https://epns.nottingham.ac.uk/search
3. The Changing Faces of Faringdon and Surrounding Villages – Book 2 p75-84 by Rosemary Church, Jim Brown, Millie Bryan and Beryl Newman. Robert Boyd Publications 2001.

Researched and compiled by Ian Lee, October 2021.


Page first published 06-10-2021 | Last updated 27-02-2024 | Copyright © 2018-2024 Ian Lee | All rights reserved.