Deddington (St. Peter and St. Paul)
DEDDINGTON (St. Peter and St. Paul), a parish, and formerly a market-town, in the union of Woodstock, hundred of Wootton, county of Oxford; containing, with the townships of Clifton and Hempton, 2025 inhabitants, of whom 1443 are in the town, 16 miles (N. by W.) from Oxford, and 69 (N. W.) from London. This place, though anciently of some consequence, having sent members to two parliaments in the reign of Edward I., is now an inconsiderable town. A castle was built here probably by the Normans, but few vestiges of it can be traced; nor is there any event of importance in the history of the place, except this castle having been the prison-house of Piers Gaveston, the favourite of Edward II., a short time after his capture by the Earl of Warwick, and before his decapitation on Blacklow Hill; and subsequently the possession of his successor in that monarch's affections, Hugh de Spencer, who suffered a similar fate. The town, which has been noted for its malt-liquor, contains several well-built houses, and is well supplied with water: several of the inhabitants are employed in the manufacture of coach-wheels and axles. A branch of the Oxford canal passes through the parish. The market has been discontinued; but a fair for cattle is still held on November 22nd. A bailiff is annually appointed at the court leet of the lord of the manor: a petty-session is held by the magistrates on the first Saturday in every month. The parish comprises 4000 acres, chiefly arable.
The living is a discharged vicarage, valued in the king's books at £15. 9. 4.; net income, £150; patrons and appropriators, the Dean and Canons of Windsor. The tithes were commuted for land and a money payment in 1807. The church is a spacious structure: the tower fell down in 1634, and some years elapsed before it was rebuilt; meanwhile, Charles I., then at Oxford, despatched an order to the inhabitants to send the broken bells to his magazine at New College, with a person to ascertain the weight, in order that they might receive an equal quantity of metal, or the value in money, when the tower should be erected. There are places of worship for Wesleyans and Independents; also almshouses for eight aged men and women, founded in 1818, and endowed with property arising from benefactions to the poor, producing about £140 per annum. In the neighbourhood are two mineral springs, now neglected, one of which is said to have been highly impregnated with sulphur. Sir Thomas Pope, an eminent statesman, and founder of Trinity College, Oxford, was born here, in 1507; and Lord Chief Justice Scroggs, who lived in the reign of Charles II., was also a native of the parish.