Oxfordshire, once part of the Anglo-Saxon kingdom of Mercia, has always been a wealthy county. Its landscapes vary from the chalk and beechwood Chiltern Hills in the south to the limestone uplands of the Cotswolds in the north-west, which give very fine building stone. The land supports arable and sheep farming, and is watered by the River Thames and its many tributaries. All this is reflected in the variety of its church buildings, architecture that is not necessarily grand but is exceptionally beautiful and atmospheric.
This book looks at a small, representative selection of buildings and their contents, some proudly in towns, others settled into their rural landscapes. Since church buildings were almost always modified over the centuries, any that date from the Middle Ages are apt to contain features from several periods. Some have been chosen because they still show their Anglo-Saxon origins. Some are here for their surviving wall paintings, some for remarkable tombs. Work of exceptional Gothic Revival architects is included, as are one or two twentieth-century buildings. Nonconformists are represented by the eighteenth-century Baptist Chapel at Cote and the contemporary Quaker Meeting House at Burford.
Illustrated throughout, Churches of Oxfordshire will be of interest to local historians, residents and visitors to the county.