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Stoke Place


Stoke Place in 2014

Known as Love Lane or Rookery Road until about 1928, Stoke Place is the start of the footpath (bridleway) from Headington to Elsfield. The south part of the road is tarmacked, but it peters down to a narrow footpath which reached as far as the Boundary Brook before the Northern Bypass cut through the path.

Stoke Place had no significant buildings until the late nineteenth century. Prior to that date, the area to the east of the lane was known as the Meadows, and there were probably some old cottages here (including the seventeenth-century one that was rebuilt as the present Stoke House). Ruskin College and its fields (formerly The Rookery), whose main entrance is at the start of the lane that is now Dunstan Road, occupies the entire west side of the Stoke Place as far as the bypass.


Headington Enclosure Award of 1805

In the Headington Enclosure Award of 1805, the present Stoke Place is numbered Road XVI, which is described thus in the preamble:

Also one other private Carriage Road and Driftway of the breadth of twenty feet numbered XVI leading in a North Eastward direction from the lane between certain old enclosures now or late belonging to Richard Finch [the owner of The Rookery] Which said last-mentioned Road is hereby set out for the use of Owners and Occupiers of the Allotments numbered 78, 79 and 80 for the time being.

The position of Allotments 78, 79, and 80, which are mentioned in the Enclosure Award as having access from what is now Stoke Place, can be seen in the plan on p.18 of A Village within a City: they comprise the present Ruskin fields on the west side of the lane, which then extended beyond the present bypass as far as the Boundary Brook

George White was awarded Plots 78 and 79 in lieu of his copyhold lands held under the Manor of Headington:

  • 78   One Plot of Land or Ground numbered 78 containing fourteen acres and four perches situate in the Meadow bounded on part of the North East by the allotment numbered 79 on the South East by the allotments numbered 82 and 83 and certain Cottages and gardens on the South West by certain old Inclosures in Headington and on the North and remaining part of the North East by the allotments numbered 76 and 77
  • 79   And One Other Plot of Land or Ground numbered 79 containing three acres three roods and twelve perches situate in the Meadow bounded on the North East by the allotment numbered 80 on the South East by the allotments numbered 89 and 81 on the South West by the allotment numbered 78 and on the North West by the allotment numbered 77 – And which said allotment numbered 79 is hereby set out for the purpose of being exchanged with the said President and Scholars of Saint Mary Magdalen College and their Lessee Letitia Finch

Mrs Letitia Finch of The Rookery (relict of Richard Finch the Elder), who effected an exchange with George White for Plot 79, was also was awarded the following directly as a Lessee of Magdalen College:

  • 80   One Other Plot of Land numbered 80 containing ten acres situate in the meadow bounded on the North East by the Brook on the South East by the Allotment numbered 92 on parts of the South West by the Allotments numbered 79 and 77 and on the North West by the Allotment numbered 75

The description of Dunstan Road in the Enclosure Award shows that, unlike Stoke Place, it was a public road:

Also one other public Carriage Road and Driftway of the like breadth of forty feet numbered XI beginning at the end of an inclosed Lane on the North West End of the village of Headington and extending first in a Northward and afterwards in a North Westward direction across a Common called Hen Grove into another inclosed Lane leading towards Marston being part of the public Road leading from the village of Headington aforesaid to Marston aforesaid


Development from c.1880

Stoke House

In 1883 The Revd J. W. A. Taylor of the Rookery built Stoke House for his retirement, and the cottages to the north were probably built at the same time.

Rookery Cottages

By the time of the 1891 census Rookery Cottages (now Nos. 1-5 Stoke Place) were all occupied:

In the preamble to the 1891 census the buildings are described as "Stoke House and Cottages in the meadows", and Stoke Place is described as Rookery Road. The number of rooms below is given only if less than five:

Sch. 89 Rookery Road:
1 Uninhabited

Sch. 90 Rookery Road (4 rooms)
John Saunders, Head, Gardener's assistant (born Beckley)
Emily Saunders, Wife, 28 (born Headington)

Sch. 91 Rookery Road
George Morris, Head, Labourer, 30 (born Headington)
Clara Morris. Wife, 29 (born Headington)
George Morris, Son, 6, scholar (born Headington)
Alice Morris, 1 (born Headington)
Clara Morris, 4 (born Headington)

Sch. 92 Rookery Road (4 rooms)
Charles Abbott Head, Bookbinder/Finisher (employee), 33 (born London)
Elizabeth M. Abbott Wife, 32 (born Headington)
Elizabeth L. Abbott, Daughter, 8, Scholar (born Headington)
Charles Frederick Abbott, Son, 7 (born Headington)

Sch. 93 Rookery Road
Susan Morris, Wife, 36, (born London)
Florence Morris, 11, Scholar (born Headington)
Hubert Morris, 4, Scholar (born Headington)
Ethel Morris, 3 (born Headington)

Sch. 94 Rookery Road
[This must be Stoke House, then the home of the Dockray family, but only servants were at home on census night]
Louisa Jane Green, Servant, Cook, 25 (born Northleigh)
Emily Gardner, Servant, Housemaid, 19 (born Holcombe)

Sch. 95 Rookery Road
William Collins, Head, 71, Painter (born Oxford)
Harriet Collins, Wife, 76 (born Headington)


1901 census

38 Rookery Cottages WITNEY John Head M 32 M Groom Worker OXF Tetsworth 85 6
38 Rookery Cottages WITNEY Mary Wife M 27 F OXF Tetsworth 85 6
38 Rookery Cottages WITNEY Hilda Mary Daur S 4 F Scholar OXF Oxford 85 6
38 Rookery Cottages WITNEY Mildred Maud Daur S 1 F OXF Headington 85 6
39 Rookery Cottages LEE Thomas Head M 50 M Gardener Worker SCT Ivinghoe [BKM?] 85 6
39 Rookery Cottages LEE Esther Ann Wife M 60 F OXF Headington 85 6
40 Rookery Cottages 1 uninhabited, not in occupation Void 85 6
41 Rookery Cottages GAMMON John Thomas Head M 41 M Gardener Worker OXF Headington 85 6
41 Rookery Cottages GAMMON Jane Wife M 40 F OXF Eynsham 85 6
41 Rookery Cottages GAMMON Gertie Daur 15 F OXF Oxford 85 6
41 Rookery Cottages GAMMON Phelp Son 13 M Houseboy OXF Headington 85 6
41 Rookery Cottages GAMMON Albert Son 11 M Scholar OXF Headington 85 6
41 Rookery Cottages GAMMON Jane Daur 9 F Scholar OXF Headington 85 6
41 Rookery Cottages GAMMON Ellen Daur 7 F Scholar OXF Headington 85 6
41 Rookery Cottages GAMMON May Daur 5 F Scholar OXF Headington 85 6
41 Rookery Cottages GAMMON Thomas Son 4 M Scholar OXF Headington 85 6
41 Rookery Cottages GAMMON Olive Daur 3 F OXF Headington 85 6
41 Rookery Cottages GAMMON Nora Daur 1 F OXF Headington 85 7
42 Rookery Cottages MORRIS William Head M 50 M Carter on Farm Worker OXF Barton, Headington 85 7
42 Rookery Cottages MORRIS Mary Ann Wife M 50 OXF Barton, Headington 85 7
42 Rookery Cottages MORRIS Rosa Daur S 28 OXF Headington 85 7
42 Rookery Cottages MORRIS Eva Daur 15 OXF Headington 85 7
42 Rookery Cottages MORRIS Edith Daur 12 OXF Headington 85 7
42 Rookery Cottages MORRIS Charles Son 8 Scholar OXF Headington 85 7
43 The Rookery TOMBS Amelia Ann Servant M 55 F Cook (Domestic) SOM Bristol 85 7
43 The Rookery HAWKINS Emma Servant S 30 F Housemaid (Domestic) SOM St Andries 85 7
43 The Rookery PARTRIDGE Annie Servant S 21 F Kitchen Maid (Domestic) BRK Wantage 85 7
43 The Rookery MARLOW Aubrey F.K. Servant S 26 M Butler (Domestic) OXF Headington 85 7
44 Blenheim Cottages 1 uninhabited, not in occupation Void 85 7
45 Blenheim Cottages 1 uninhabited, not in occupation Void 85 7
46 Stoke DOCKRAY Robert Henry Head M 57 M Private Tutor Own account LND London, Hampton Road 85 7
46 Stoke DOCKRAY Sarah M.L. Wife M 57 F Artist in Oils &c. Own account MDX Stansted 85 7
46 Stoke PRIOR Esther D. Servant S 26 F Servant (Domestic) BRK Harwell 85 7
46 Stoke HONEY Frederick Servant 14 M Servant (Domestic) BRK Wallingford 85 7

 

1911 census

1 Stoke Place Rookery Cottage 93 MORRIS Charles Head M 59 Married 19yrs Builder (employer) Headington Oxon
1 Stoke Place Rookery Cottage 93 MORRIS Margaret Wife F 60 Married 19yrs N/A Iffley Oxon
1 Stoke Place Rookery Cottage 93 WALLACE Daisy Boarder F 27 Single Private means Aldershot Hampshire
2 Stoke Place 2 Rookery Cottages 94 PHIPPS Cornelius Head M 40 Married 17yrs (6/6/0) Traction engine driver (worker) for (Morley) contractor, Hadden Bampton Garsington Oxon
2 Stoke Place 2 Rookery Cottages 94 PHIPPS Ellen Wife F 50 Married 17yrs (6/6/0) N/A Wootton Oxon
2 Stoke Place 2 Rookery Cottages 94 PHIPPS Marjory Elizabeth Daughter F 12 N/A N/A Wootton Oxon
2 Stoke Place 2 Rookery Cottages 94 PHIPPS Doris Rose Daughter F 8 N/A N/A Steeple Claydon Buckinghamshire
2 Stoke Place 2 Rookery Cottages 94 PHIPPS Nellie Violet Daughter F 6 N/A N/A Steeple Claydon Buckinghamshire
2 Stoke Place 2 Rookery Cottages 94 PHIPPS Margaret Annie Daughter F 2 N/A N/A Marston Oxon
3 Stoke Place 3 Rookery Cottages 95 MORRIS George Head M 50 Married 5yrs (5/4/1) General labourer for Oxford City Council Headington Oxon
3 Stoke Place 3 Rookery Cottages 95 MORRIS Clara Wife F 49 Married 5yrs (5/4/1) N/A Standlake Oxon
3 Stoke Place 3 Rookery Cottages 95 MORRIS George Sydney Son M 26 Single Gas and hot watter fitter, plumbing worker Headington Oxon
3 Stoke Place 3 Rookery Cottages 95 MORRIS Arthur Frederick Son M 18 Single Groom (domestic) Headington Oxon
4 Stoke Place 4 Rookery Cottages 96 GARDNER Alexander Head M 46 Married 21yrs (7/6/1) Pipe laying for telephones, worker Barton, Headington Oxon
4 Stoke Place 4 Rookery Cottages 96 GARDNER Augusta Wife F 42 Married 21yrs (7/6/1) N/A Elsfield Oxon
4 Stoke Place 4 Rookery Cottages 96 GARDNER Aubrey Son M 18 Single Butcher (worker) Headington Oxon
4 Stoke Place 4 Rookery Cottages 96 GARDNER Everard Son M 16 Single Baker (worker) Headington Oxon
4 Stoke Place 4 Rookery Cottages 96 GARDNER Frank Son M 12 N/A N/A Headington Oxon
4 Stoke Place 4 Rookery Cottages 96 GARDNER Victoria Daughter F 9 N/A N/A Headington Oxon
4 Stoke Place 4 Rookery Cottages 96 GARDNER Marguerite Daughter F 6 N/A N/A Headington Oxon
5 Stoke Place 5 Rookery Cottages 97 SOANES William Cecil Head M 33 Married 2yrs (1/1/0) Gardener for Rev. Moss [of Highfield Park] (worker) Headington Oxon
5 Stoke Place 5 Rookery Cottages 97 SOANES Eva Blanche Wife F 27 Married 2yrs (1/1/0) At home Littlehampton Sussex
5 Stoke Place 5 Rookery Cottages 97 SOANES Dorothy Audrey Daughter F 2 N/A N/A Brighton Sussex
5 Stoke Place 5 Rookery Cottages 97 SOANES Aaron Father M 53 Widower Faggot maker for wood men (worker) Oxford Oxon
5 Stoke Place 5 Rookery Cottages 97 SOANES Caroline Ellen Sister F 26 Single Day girl (worker) Oxford Oxon
Stoke House Stoke 98 DOCKRAY Robert Henry Head M 67 Married 24yrs (0/0/0) No occupation Hampstead Middlesex
Stoke House Stoke 98 DOCKRAY Sarah Mary Louisa Wife F 67 Married 24yrs (0/0/0) Artist (own account, at home) Stanstead Bury Hertfordshire
Stoke House Stoke 98 WOOLRIDGE Florence Alice [Servant] F 18 Single Cook  London Middlesex
Stoke House Stoke 98 EBORN Ethel [Servant] F 16 Single Housemaid (worker) Oakley Buckinghamshire
? Blenheim Cottage 99 BICKMORE Marianne Charlotte Head F 50 Widow (5/5/0) N/A Dublin Ireland
? Blenheim Cottage 99 BICKMORE Charles William Son M 22 Single University Student Oxford Oxon
? Blenheim Cottage 99 KENNEDY George Charles Leslie Nephew M 22 Single Law Student Dublin Ireland
? Blenheim Cottage 99 FOOTMAN Agnes Servant F 60 Widow General servant (worker) Reading Berkshire
The Rookery Charlton Lea 100 MASSIE John Head M 68 Married 34yrs (0/0/0) Retired Professor of New Testament Greek Newton-le-Willows Lancashire
The Rookery Charlton Lea 100 MASSIE Edith Mary Wife F 62 Married 34yrs (0/0/0) N/A Guildford Surrey
The Rookery Charlton Lea 100 MILLS Ada Servant F 30 Single Domestic Servant (worker) Yarnton Oxon
The Rookery Charlton Lea 100 RUSSELL Ada Servant F 38 Single Domestic Servant (worker) Woodley Berkshire
The Rookery Charlton Lea 100 COCKERELL Margery Servant F 30 Single Domestic Servant (worker) Long Itchington Warwickshire
The Rookery Charlton Lea 100 CAFFELLE Elizabeth Servant F 28 Single Domestic Servant (worker) Ashperton Warwickshire
The Rookery Charlton Lea 100 TAYLOR Agnes Servant F 21 Single Domestic Servant (worker) Headington Oxon
The Rookery Charlton Lea 100 FORTY Henrietta Servant F 17 Single Domestic Servant (worker) Botley Berkshire
The Rookery Charlton Lea 100 HARRIS Fanny Servant F 16 Single Domestic Servant (worker) Oxford Oxon

 

Stoke Place sign

The road was officially named Stoke Place (after Stoke House) in c.1928 after Headington was taken over by Oxford and street names were rationlized.

The first mention of the road with its new name in the St Andrew's baptismal register is on 1 January 1929, when Barbara Joan Jacobs of 4 Stoke Place, the daughter of the labourer George Frederick Jones and his wife Ethel, was baptised there.

The occupants of the east side of Stoke Place in 1935 were as follows:

  • 1. Charles JONES
  • 2. Cornelius PHIPPS
  • 3. John GAMMON
  • 4. George JACOBS
  • 5. William SOANES
  • Stoke House: Major William LAURISTON
  • The Glen: Mrs Seymour

In the early 1960s three more houses were built in the garden of Stoke, and were named High Trees, Lismore, and Denstoke: they are now numbered 8, 9, and 10 Stoke Place.

The only house on the west side of Stoke Place is Rookery Cottage.

© Stephanie Jenkins

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