Secret Whitchurch

St John's church  WhitchurchThe church, at Whitchurch.

There’s more to the ancient village of Whitchurch than you might think, if you are just passing through. Amongst other things, hidden away are a secret World War 2 workshop, a castle, and a Tudor house that’s in disguise.

I parked on the High Street, facing towards Winslow, a little way North of the petrol station. I was right next to a post box. If you can’t find a spot there, try the side streets on the South (Aylesbury) end of the village.

Keep on the same side of the road and walk North towards the Winslow end of the High Street. There’s a long half timbered house on your left, just after the gentle left hand bend. This 16th Century house is now known as Winster Paddocks, but it was once a coaching inn called The Cock Inn, and from 1914 to 1989 It was a butcher’s shop.

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Lost Villages of North Bucks

There are many lost villages in England. Many people imagine they vanished because of the Black Death, but there are plenty of other reasons for villages to disappear. Here’s just a few of the lost villages that you can visit in North Bucks.

Tyringham and Gayhurst
Tyringham bridge and the house
Tyringham bridge, and the house.

In 1562 the Tyringham family had the seven farms in the village demolished so that they could extend the park land surrounding the manor house. The village had been emparked.

There’s no evidence that the village was rebuilt elsewhere. Emparking was common in England, and Gayhurst House, on the opposite side of the B road, is the site of another emparked village.

At Gayhurst, the village was rebuilt on what’s now the B526.

What’s there now?

Tyringham Hall and grounds (not open to the public) and the church. The graceful Tyringham bridge is Grade 1 listed.

Tyringham is a couple of miles North of Newport Pagnell, just off the B526. Turn right off this road, and drive through the gatehouse and over Tyringham bridge. The church is on the right, about 200 yards after the bridge.

The early 18th century church up by Gayhurst house is very fine, and there’s a magnificent Walnut tree not far past the gatehouse of Gayhurst House. The house is not open to the public.

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Pulling for Village and County

Tales From The Edge
This is an occasional series where I go to the edge of North Bucks and show you what I've found.

Tiddington  and Ickford tug of warPlacing the rope's centre marker.

I don’t often return to a location two weeks in a row, but sometimes it’s to show you something that’s too good to miss, so here we are back at Ickford, in the bottom left corner of the North Bucks Wanderer’s area map.

Ickford's Southern parish boundary is also the county boundary, and it’s the river Thame. The Oxfordshire village of Tiddington shares this boundary, so naturally that’s where we’ll find the annual tug of war between the two villages.

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The Ancient Village of Ickford

Tales From The Edge
This is an occasional series where I go to the edge of North Bucks and show you what I've found.

Inside:outside Ickford churchInside/outside the church.

Right on the bottom left hand edge of the North bucks area is the village of Ickford. You can walk half a mile South from the village towards Tiddington, but when you cross the 17th Century bridge over the River Thame you’ll find yourself in Oxfordshire. The river valley is shallow here, the land almost flat.

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