Moulsford from the River Thames
 Moulsford-on-Thames shown within Oxfordshire
Area  7.24 km2 (2.80 sq mi)
Population 526 (2001 census)[1]
    density  73/km2 (190/sq mi)
OS grid referenceSU585835
Civil parishMoulsford
DistrictSouth Oxfordshire
Shire countyOxfordshire
RegionSouth East
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Post town Wallingford
Postcode district OX10
Dialling code 01491
Police Thames Valley
Fire Oxfordshire
Ambulance South Central
EU Parliament South East England
UK ParliamentWantage
WebsiteMoulsford Village Website
List of places

Coordinates: 51°33′04″N 1°08′42″W / 51.551°N 1.145°W / 51.551; -1.145

St John the Baptist parish church, Moulsford
Moulsford Green and recreation ground

Moulsford is a village and civil parish and former manor in South Oxfordshire. Before 1974 it was in the county of Berkshire, in Wallingford Rural District, but following the Berkshire boundary changes of that year it became a part of Oxfordshire, in the district of South Oxfordshire. Moulsford is on the A329, by the River Thames, just north of Streatley and south of Wallingford. The west of the parish is taken up by the foothills of the Berkshire Downs, including the Moulsford Downs (a site of special scientific interest), Moulsford Bottom and Kingstanding Hill which is traditionally associated with King Alfred and the Battle of Ashdown. Like many other villages in Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire it has been used for the filming of Midsomer Murders.

Parish church

Moulsford parish church began as a chapelry of Cholsey.[2] The first known record of the chapel dates from between 1220 and 1227.[2] The botanist and geologist John Stevens Henslow was its vicar in the 1830s. In 1846 most of the mediaeval church was demolished and the current Church of England parish church of Saint John the Baptist, designed by Sir George Gilbert Scott, was built on its foundations.[2] Scott's Gothic Revival building retains the west wall of the original church, which includes a 13th-century Early English Gothic lancet window, and the timber frame of the bellcote.[2]

Other notable buildings


Pre-Norman Conquest

The Bronze Age 'Moulsford Torc' was discovered in the parish and bought by the Museum of Reading with the aid of a grant from the Art Fund in 1961. It is a hoop-shaped decorative neck ornament, made of four spirally-twisted gold-alloy strips held together by a delicate piece of twisted gold wire.

Post Norman Conquest

Descent of the manor

In the Middle Ages until 1497 the manor of Moulsford was a principal seat of the prominent Carew family,[4] also seated at Carew Castle in Pembrokeshire and later at Mohuns Ottery in Devon. The manor of Moulsford is not listed in the Domesday Book of 1086 and is believed at that time to have been included within the royal manor of Cholsey.

Arms of Carew, adopted at the start of the age of heraldry (circa 1200-15): Or, three lions passant in pale sable[5]

The descent of the manor in the Carew family was as follows:

Seal of Nicholas Carew (d.1311) affixed to the Barons' Letter of 1301 showing: Three lions passant in pale with inscription: S(IGILLUM) NICHOLAI DE CARREW ("seal of Nicholas de Carew")


  1. "Area: Moulsford CP (Parish): Parish Headcounts". Neighbourhood Statistics. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 18 March 2010.
  2. 1 2 3 4 Page & Ditchfield, 1923, pages 504-507
  3. "Fair Mile Hospital". UK: Berkshire Family History Society. Retrieved 22 August 2015.
  4. Royal Berkshire History: Moulsford Manor
  5. Debrett's Peerage, 1968, Carew Baronets, p.155; Baron Carew p.216; These were the arms shown on the seal of Nic(olae)us de Carru (c.1255–1311), appended to the Barons' Letter, 1301 and blazoned in the 1301 Caerlaverock Roll of Arms
  6. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 VCH
  7. 1 2 Vivian, p.133
  8. Vivian, Lt.Col. J.L., (Ed.) The Visitations of the County of Devon: Comprising the Heralds' Visitations of 1531, 1564 & 1620, Exeter, 1895, p.133, pedigree of Carew
  9. Vivian, p.134
  10. VCH, note 44, quoting: Parliamentary Writs (Record Commission), Vol.I, p.104

Sources and further reading

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