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St Mary and St Edburga, Stratton Audley, Oxfordshire

(51°55′48″N, 1°7′1″W)
Stratton Audley
SP 608 261
pre-1974 traditional (England and Wales) Oxfordshire
now Oxfordshire
  • Jane Cunningham
  • Janet Newson
20 June 2013

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Feature Sets

The village of Stratton Audley is 2.5 miles NE of Bicester in NE Oxfordshire. The present church was largely rebuilt in the C13th and C14th. It comprises a chancel, clerestoried nave, N and S aisles, a N porch and a W tower. A Romanesque doorway, perhaps a priest’s doorway, has been reset in the wall of the chancel S aisle.


In 1086 Robert d'Olly of Oxford held 5 hides at Stratton, where his tenant was Alward, succeeded by Gilbert Basset. Gilbert held 7 fees of the honor of Wallingford, in possession of Stratton by 1109. On his death, c. 1154, his son Thomas, who was Sheriff of Oxford, succeeded. On his death in 1180, Stratton passed to his eldest son, Gilbert, founder of Bicester Priory.

A grant of tithes before 1109 may indicate the existence of an C11th church, but not necessarily, as at that time Stratton was in the parish of Bicester. The church is first specified when it was granted with the church of Bicester, of which it was a dependent chapel, by Gilbert Basset, lord of both manors, to the Augustinian Priory at Bicester at its foundation between 1182-5. The priory appropriated both from at least 1220 until the Dissolution.

Although Bicester church is dedicated to St Edburga, it seems that the dedication here, to St Mary and St Edburga, is not necessarily the same saint. VCH suggest that this one was the daughter of Edward the Elder, who died in 924.

The church is in the Shelswell Benefice, comprising Cottisford, Finmere, Fringford, Goddington, Hardwick, Hethe, Mixbury, Newton Purcell, Stoke Lyne and Stratton Audley.


Exterior Features



The octagonal tapered font is of uncertain age. Its style and size resembles a similar one at St Edburg's, Bicester, judged to be of C13th origin.


J. Sherwood and N. Pevsner, The Buildings of England: Oxfordshire (Harmondsworth, 1974), 794.

Victoria County History: Oxfordshire, 6 (London, 1959), 324-333.