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
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
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
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.
is about 2.5 miles west of the centre of Abingdon on the