Although Appleford-on-Thames is close to the River Thames the big mystery for a visitor to the village is just where is the river? There is no obvious sign of it at all!

At the extreme south of the village is a level crossing over the main railway line from Didcot to Oxford. However to enter the village from the direction of Didcot you ignore the level crossing and turn sharp right. The road into the centre of the village from Didcot is a long straight one with little of interest except, perhaps, the public house, The Carpenter's Arms.

In the centre of the village the road turns left and leaves the village over a railway bridge and past the station. Also in the centre of the village is the start of Church Street which leads to Manor Farm and the parish church, the Church of St. Peter and St. Paul. There are a few interesting buildings in this road.

Historically Appleford was a place where apples from the Harwell orchards were carried across the Thames into Oxfordshire. (This area of Oxfordshire was part of Berkshire until the middle of the last century.) Appleford was once a key crossing point along the river and there was once a bridge over the Thames here. It is also known that there was church (dedicated to Saint Mary Magdalene) at the south side of the bridge, as well as the present Church of St. Peter and St. Paul.

It is believed that in Saxon times there was a church on the site of St. Peter's and St. Paul's Church, probably founded by Saint Birinus of Dorchester or one of his priests, although nothing remains of it today. The oldest features of the present Grade II listed building date from the Twelfth Century when the nave was rebuilt. The chancel was rebuilt in the Thirteenth century. For the history and full information about St. Peter's and St. Paul's Church click here.

Appleford-on-Thames is north of Didcot and west of Sutton Courtenay on the B4016.


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