Located on Oxfordshire's western fringe between the rivers Leach and Thames, the nine rural settlements covered in this volume are typical Cotswold villages, with their limestone-built farmhouses, their former open fields, and their extensive former sheep pastures. All belonged to a sizeable late Anglo-Saxon estate whose break-up gave rise to the later parish structure: Langford church, with its celebrated late eleventh-century tower, may have begun as a small minster. Excavations at Radcot have revealed much about the settlement's early character, including the discovery of a twelfth-century castle. The area as a whole is predominantly agricultural, though milling, malting and quarrying have all been significant. Woodland at Bradwell Grove was important from the middle ages. In later years the villages developed in diverse ways, displaying contrasting closed and open characteristics. The most famous village is arguably Kelmscott, where the designer William Morris rented Kelmscott Manor as a summer home from 1871; but Filkins was home to the Labour politician Sir Stafford Cripps, who worked with local craftsmen to build several Cotswold-style houses and community buildings there. Gentry houses include the nineteenth-century Gothic mansion at Bradwell Grove, which became the centre of a substantial estate and later of the Cotswold Wildlife Park.
This book is part of the Oxford Reading Tree Fireflies series which offer a wide range of stimulating non-fiction titles for young children. It includes a variety of topics covering all areas of the curriculum, from science to citizenship. The books have a bright modern page design, and are illustrated with colour photographs. They are carefully graded across 10 stages and contain built-in progression and vocabulary repetition throughout. Each book includes notes for parents/carers and teaching assistants on the inside covers. This book is also available as part of a mixed pack of 6 different books or a class pack of 36 books of the same ORT stage. Each book pack comes with a free copy of up-to-date and invaluable teaching notes. CD-ROM versions of Fireflies titles are also available as eFireflies.
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