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Owslebury remembered

Owslebury should be  pronounced Uzzlebury, although these days the pronunciation  Osslebury is more common (click HERE for origins of name). It is situated 6 miles south-east of Winchester, on a windswept chalk ridge 350 feet above sea level. Owslebury and Morestead is a scattered parish picturesquely located among the hilly downs and woodlands and commands views of the Isle of Wight, Cheesefoot Head, and towards Preshaw and Beacon Hill and the Meon Valley.  Surrounding Owslebury village are the Hamlets of Baybridge, Marwell, Hensting and Morestead.

 In AD 964 land at Owslebury was granted to the Bishop of Winchester by King Edgar. According to the Domesday Book the Manor of Owslebury was held by the bishop before and after the Norman Conquest.

 In the early days the manor wascalled Twyford with Marwell, but during the fourteenth century it became known as Marwell or Marwell Woodlock, although the parish was still called, Owslebury.

 The Woodlock family enclosed lands at Marwell and paid rent to the bishop. In the sixteenth century Bishop Fox granted the demesne lands at Owslebury to his college of Corpus Christi at Oxford, which was founded 1515-16.

 The Manor of Marwell passed to the crown in 1551 and was granted to Sir Henry Seymour the same year.

 Marwell Hall was traditionally the scene of the courtship of Henry VIII and Lady Jane Seymour.

When Queen Mary came to the throne the Manor of Marwell was restored to the bishopric of Winchester, but it passed back to the Seymour family by 1577.

 In 1626 the manor was coveyed to Sir Henry Mildmay and remained in the Mildmay and Paulet St. John family until the nineteenth century.

 The Bishop of Winchester had a park at Marwell from the thirteenth century to the mid-seventeenth century where timber was cut, cattle were pastured and animals were hunted at various times.

 Longwood Warren and farm also belonged to the bishop until 1589 when it was granted to Thomas Ellys and Edward Vaughan. At Marwell Park, Bishop Henry de Blois (1129-71) founded a small college of secular priests; this building and the near by bishop’s house were surrounded by a moat.

Articles and information about Owslebury

There are some very interesting articles and facts about Owslebury’s past ranging from a murder in the Parish, parishioners accounts of day to day life, the agricultural riots in the 18th Century, Longwood House, to memories of Owslebury School.  Click Historical 1 for further information.  For births, deaths, electoral roles, trade directories and one of the original …

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Help Tracing Your ‘Family Tree’ in Owslebury

All requests for help with history research etc. can be made through the website using the Contact Us Form As local historian for Owslebury, I have collected a great deal of information on many past residents.   Many names are as now familiar as my own!  Village life was hard here years ago (Owslebury, caught …

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David Harfield in action!

Over 100 years of Cricket in Owslebury!

    Village cricket here dates to the 1830’s, and is second to Broad Halfpenny Down – the birthplace of cricket. A newspaper cutting of 1840 held, states: “The Cricket Club possessed two strong teams, and played courtesy of landowners at Marwell or Longwood”  (Lord Tennyson played for the village while a guest at Marwell). …

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Owslebury – the origins of the name

Owslebury – or in the days of King Edward the Peaceful – OSELBYRIG. A tongue twisting name for our village!  Folk today pronounce it Osselbury, but if you are fortunate enough to talk to – rare these days – a ‘native’, they will tell you ‘it ain’t OSSELBURY – it should be UZZLEBURY,  and sounds …

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