Much of Marcham is attractive and certainly worth visiting, but pedestrians take their life in their hands if they venture along parts of the main road through the village, the busy A415 which links the A420 with the A34. This road is narrow with some sharp bends and there is no pavement! Marcham badly needs a bypass and one was indeed planned but the Government recently decided there were no funds for it, so the village continues to suffer with heavy traffic passing through the village.

Marcham began as a Saxon settlement and the name 'Marcham' is thought to come from 'merece' which was Old English for wild sea celery and which grew here because of nearby salt springs.

An ancient Roman and early Saxon cemetery has been discovered nearby and in the extreme west of modern parish of Marcham a Roman village has been found. This is usually referred to as the Roman town of Frilford as it is just south of that village. It has been extensively surveyed and selectively excavated over the last sixty years, including a visit by Channel 4's Time Team.

In the 18th century the manor was owned by John Elwes who was Berkshire's first MP and had a reputation as being a miser. His grandaughter, Emily Frances, eloped with a local farmer named Thomas Duffield who also became an MP for Abingdon and eventually the two of them inherited the manor. They built Marcham Park, a large late Georgian house which is set in 17 acres of landscaped gardens. During the second world war the house was used by the RAF and since 1947 it has been used by the National Federation of Women's Institutes for use as a residential training college and is now known as 'Denman College'.

Away from the busy main road can be found All Saint's Church, and at the other side of the village there is a small Baptist Church. For the history and full information about All Saints Church Click here.

Marcham is about 2.5 miles west of the centre of Abingdon on the A415


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Marcham 1
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