A History of the County of Gloucester: Volume 9, Bradley Hundred. The Northleach Area of the Cotswolds. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 2001.
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Coln Rogers was a small rural parish lying beside the Foss way 10 km. north-east of Cirencester. It had an area of 1,574 a. (fn. 1) (637 ha.) in a narrow band of land extending along the south-east side of the Foss way for 5 km. from the river Coln, which separated it from Coln St. Dennis on the north-east. At its south-west end Coln Rogers's boundaries were tributary streams of the Ampney brook and part of its long south-eastern boundary was a road. In the early 12th century the parish was known simply as Coln (fn. 2) and in the mid 12th century it was called Coln St. Andrew (fn. 3) from the dedication of the parish church. (fn. 4) The name Coln Rogers, in use by 1200, (fn. 5) recalls Roger of Gloucester, who gave the manor to Gloucester abbey in 1105. (fn. 6) Coln Rogers ceased to exist as a civil parish in 1935 when it was merged with Coln St. Dennis. (fn. 7)
The land of Coln Rogers rises steeply from the river Coln at c. 113 m. to over 160 m. In the south the land reaches its highest point at Colnpen copse and, to the west, it falls into the uppermost part of a tributary valley of the Ampney brook below the Foss way; the sources of that brook included the Winterwell spring on the south-western boundary. (fn. 8) The ground is formed mostly of Forest Marble with the underlying Great Oolite emerging in the valleys and, in the north at Pindrup, a patch of fuller's earth forming the floor of the Coln valley. (fn. 9) Large open fields covered much of the parish until their inclosure, probably in the 1730s, and meadow land was confined to the narrow strip following the bank of the river Coln on the north-east. In the early 15th century Gloucester abbey as lord of the manor enforced its ownership of fishing rights in the river (fn. 10) and by the early 17th century the river flowed for part of its course in two channels, one of which may once have been a mill leat. (fn. 11) In 1840 Coln Rogers had only 24 a. of woodland, most of it in Colnpen copse in the south and in smaller copses around a field known as Pindrup moor in the north. (fn. 12) Several of the latter copses had been cleared by the 1880s (fn. 13) and the area of woodland in the parish in 1905 was given as 13 a. (fn. 14)
In 1086 eighteen tenants were recorded in Coln Rogers (fn. 15) and in 1327 sixteen people were assessed for tax there. (fn. 16) Later records of population include c. 36 communicants in 1551, (fn. 17) 10 households in 1563, (fn. 18) 34 communicants in 1603, (fn. 19) and 14 families in 1650. (fn. 20) The total population was estimated at 70 c. 1710 (fn. 21) and was given as 125 c. 1775 (fn. 22) and 110 in 1801. It increased in the early 19th century and stood at 156 in 1851; it then fell to 90 in 1871 and fluctuated around 100 in the late 19th century and the early 20th. In 1931 it was 95. (fn. 23)
In 1394 the Coln Rogers tithingman kept watch at the bridge carrying the Foss way over the river Coln at Fossebridge. (fn. 24) That crossing was evidently maintained by Coln St. Dennis in the early 18th century (fn. 25) and the road was a turnpike from 1755 (fn. 26) until 1877. (fn. 27) The Foss way has remained the principal road in the area and in the mid 20th century it was straightened in a dip on the side of Coln Rogers beyond which its direct course has remained on a slightly different alignment. (fn. 28) A route known in 1618 as the ridgeway or wood way (fn. 29) followed the line of an old road to Fairford and Lechlade crossing the Foss way at Foss Cross and bisecting Coln Rogers from north-west to south-east. (fn. 30)
The village of Coln Rogers is situated beside the river Coln some way downstream from Fossebridge and Coln St. Dennis village and has remained small and built almost entirely of limestone rubble. The parish church stands at the north end close to the river bank and dates from the mid 11th century. The site of the medieval manor, on which Gloucester abbey reserved several buildings in the early 16th century, and the house occupied by the lords farmer of the manor in the 17th century (fn. 31) were presumably immediately north of the churchyard where an old farmhouse belonging to the manorial demesne stood uninhabitable in 1789. (fn. 32) In 1831, when a house (Upper Farm) south-west of the churchyard was the farmhouse, the principal outbuildings, all new and of stone, were a barn (dated 1828) and stables, west of the old farmhouse, and a thatched cowshed. The old house, which like the older outbuildings was dilapidated, (fn. 33) had been demolished by 1867. (fn. 34) Upper Farm was built in the early 18th century on a lobby-entry plan with two storeys and three rooms on each floor. The home of John Millington (d. by 1784), a carpenter, and of his son John (d. 1817), (fn. 35) who became a farmer and a landowner in and around Coln Rogers, (fn. 36) the house had been enlarged by the early 19th century by the addition of a short north-east wing over a cellar and of a north-west lean-to, making a U plan. (fn. 37) In the mid 19th century the main range was slightly raised in height, reroofed, and refronted and was fenced in front with cast-iron railings. Later the farmhouse was made rectangular by infilling of the U plan and small additions were made on the north side. On the sale of the farm in the late 20th century the farm buildings to the north passed into separate ownership and the early 19th-century stables next to the barn dated 1828 were converted as a house. The farmhouse was remodelled as a private house following its sale in 1994. (fn. 38)
The rest of the village is mainly south-west of the church with the Pigeon House, to the east on the far side of the river, forming an outlying part in Coln St. Dennis parish. (fn. 39) The buildings nearest the church include the former rectory (the Glebe House) and a few 17th-century gabled cottages, two of which have been made into one. At the south end of the main part of the village is a larger gabled cottage built on an L plan in the later 17th century and enlarged in the 20th century. Lower down to the south, and set apart from the rest of the village, is a former farmstead known as Lower Farm. (fn. 40) The 17thcentury gabled farmhouse, on an L plan with two storeys and attics, has been enlarged several times, the additions including a block in the angle on the lane front and single-storeyed 19thcentury buildings on the south-east corner. Of the detached outbuildings, a large 18th-century barn higher up to the west was being converted for residential use in 1999. On the opposite, north side of the lane, stables incorporating a range dated 1845 with the initials of William Beach (fn. 41) were altered to accommodate a stud farm following the sale of the farmstead in 1985. (fn. 42) In the 19th century several estate cottages were built in the village. One pair is dated 1869 and two pairs, one of them at Lower Farm, date from the end of the century. In 1865 a barn near the north end of the village was acquired for conversion as a schoolroom and schoolhouse. (fn. 43) The school closed in 1876 (fn. 44) and the house was not completed until 1883 or later. (fn. 45) The building, which became solely a house in the later 20th century, was restored in the 1990s with a garden to the south in a former paddock (fn. 46) and it retained its bellcot. No new houses were built in the 20th century but, as mentioned above, a few farm buildings were converted as dwellings at the end of the century.
In the north of the parish dwellings stood beside the river at Pindrup (formerly Pynthrop) by the mid 13th century, when the settlement there included a water mill. (fn. 47) In 1999 Pindrup, which formed an outlying part of Coln St. Dennis village, comprised a 17th-century house, once the centre of a large copyhold farm, and its outbuildings (fn. 48) and, higher up to the south-west, a late 20th-century house on the site of another outbuilding. A pair of farm cottages some way to the south-west and nearer the Foss way was built soon after 1867. (fn. 49) Several barns were built outside Coln Rogers village after the mid 18thcentury inclosure, (fn. 50) and a range, recorded from the later 18th century, near springs by the road to Pindrup (fn. 51) was two dwellings called Splash Cottages in the mid 19th century. (fn. 52) In the south of the parish a post-inclosure barn standing north of Colnpen copse was converted as a house after 1985. (fn. 53) To the west a farmstead was established on the Foss way in the late 19th century (fn. 54) and a small farmhouse had been built there by the mid 20th century.
No evidence of a public house in Coln Rogers has been found. In the early 20th century the former village schoolroom was used as a reading room and a church hall; (fn. 55) it ceased to be a meeting place after 1950. (fn. 56) Soon after the Second World War a wooden hut, to serve as a community centre for surrounding villages and hamlets, was built by the Winson road south of Coln Rogers village on the Coln St. Dennis side of the river. (fn. 57) It remained in use in 1999.
Giles Oldisworth (161878), a royalist and a noted scholar and writer, was born at Coln Rogers, a son of the lord farmer of the manor. (fn. 58) In late 1830 the widespread agrarian riots included a machine-breaking incident at Coln Rogers. (fn. 59)
Manor and Other Estates.
The manor of COLN ROGERS originated in an estate of ten hides held before the Conquest by Baldwin son of Herlwin and granted after it to Odo, bishop of Bayeux. The bishop's estates were forfeited to the Crown in 1082 and the manor remained in William I's hands in 1086. (fn. 60) In 1105 the knight Roger of Gloucester, having been wounded at Falaise (Calvados), granted the manor to Gloucester abbey and in 1127 a claim to it by Gilbert de Mynors was rejected. (fn. 61) Coln Rogers remained in the abbey's ownership (fn. 62) and was included with other of its estates in the endowment of the dean and chapter of Gloucester cathedral in 1541. (fn. 63)
Sir Anthony Kingston held a lease of the manor in 1550 when the dean and chapter granted a lease of it and Fairford rectory in reversion to William Thomas for 90 years. Within a short time William had taken possession and until the late 18th century he and his successors as lessees of the dean and chapter held the manor as lords farmer. In 1557 William, who was also known as William Morris, sold the lease to Roger Lygon and his wife Catherine, (fn. 64) of Fairford. Roger (d. 1583 or 1584) left the lease to his nephew George Lygon. (fn. 65) George (d. 1593) left it to his brother Henry Lygon of Worcester and Henry (d. 1596) left it to two other brothers, Robert and Richard. (fn. 66) Robert took up residence in Coln Rogers and at his death in 1609 left an interest in the manor to a cousin Anthony Dodd. (fn. 67) Richard Lygon paid the farm to the dean and chapter in 1610 (fn. 68) and Anthony Dodd, who paid it later, was succeeded as lord farmer in or soon after 1613 by Robert Oldisworth, (fn. 69) George Lygon's grandson. (fn. 70)
In 1639 Robert Oldisworth obtained a lease of the manor for 21 years (fn. 71) and in 1650, following the dean and chapter's forfeiture of their estates, his son William Oldisworth of Fairford bought the manor, including land in Ablington attached to it. (fn. 72) After the dean and chapter recovered their estates at the Restoration William retained the manor as their lessee, (fn. 73) being granted a lease for 21 years in 1661. That lease was renewed every few years (fn. 74) and the dean and chapter's principal income from the estate came from the fine, calculated in the mid 18th century at 1 year's valuation, levied at each renewal. (fn. 75) William Oldisworth (d. 1680) was succeeded as lord farmer by his son James (d. 1722), the rector of Kencot (Oxon.), who in his turn was succeeded by his daughter Muriel Loggan. (fn. 76) In 1727 Alexander Ready of Fairford, later of Filkins (Oxon.), acquired the manor. (fn. 77) Alexander, who in the mid 1750s took the surname Colston, (fn. 78) died in 1775 (fn. 79) leaving the manor to his son John Chaunler Ready. (fn. 80) He died in 1793 (fn. 81) and his representatives sold the estate to Michael Hicks Beach of Williamstrip in 1796. (fn. 82)
At the sale the dean and chapter took the manor back in hand (fn. 83) and granted Hicks Beach the demesne and the copyhold land in the lord farmer's possession on leases, renewed periodically, for 21 years and three lives respectively. Hicks Beach died intestate in 1830 and his estate in Coln Rogers was acquired by his son William Hicks Beach, (fn. 84) who dropped the name Hicks in 1838. (fn. 85) In 1846 he sold his interest in the two farms making up his estate to members of the Barton family, the tenants, and they held the farms on leases for years and for lives until the mid 1860s when the Ecclesiastical Commissioners granted them farming leases for 21 years. (fn. 86) The Commissioners, who had taken over the dean and chapter's estates in 1855, included Coln Rogers in the estates given back to the dean and chapter on their re-endowment in 1866. In 1894 the dean and chapter again surrendered Coln Rogers to the Ecclesiastical Commissioners (fn. 87) and in the later 20th century the estate was broken up, as their successors, the Church Commissioners, (fn. 88) sold off the farms one by one. The landowners in 1999 included Mr. Maurice Lait, who had taken the tenancy of Upper farm in 1950, and Mr. Christopher Wright, of the Glebe House, who had purchased Lower farm (c. 415 a.) in 1985. (fn. 89)
A hall and other buildings reserved for the use of the abbot of Gloucester or his officers in 1524 (fn. 90) were presumably on the same site as Robert Lygon's residence known in the early 17th century as 'the manor house'. (fn. 91) The house, which Robert Oldisworth occupied as a farmhouse a few years later (fn. 92) and for which William Oldisworth was assessed on six hearths in 1672, (fn. 93) stood next to the churchyard, the bound- ary of which the lord farmer and the rector maintained by custom in the later 17th century. (fn. 94) Its site was presumably that north of the church of an old farmhouse demolished in the mid 19th century. (fn. 95) On the north side of the site a stone range that served as a cowshed was retained. The range comprises two separate rooms and, although it was described in 1831 as newly built, (fn. 96) has a 14th-century arched doorway on the south side of the east room. (fn. 97) In the mid 20th century part of the churchyard wall was removed to give access to the building, (fn. 98) but by the mid 1970s the east room had lost its thatched roof and was derelict. (fn. 99) The west room, which has a loft and a stone tiled roof, was also derelict in 1999.
PINDRUP was the home of generations of the Morse family, which was settled in the parish by the early 16th century, (fn. 100) and came to be the centre of a large copyhold estate or farm. John Morse of Pindrup died in 1576 and his eldest son Robert, then a minor, (fn. 101) died in 1592 leaving infant sons Edmund and Justinian. (fn. 102) The same or another Justinian Morse held over 240 a. at Pindrup from the lord farmer of the manor in 1650. (fn. 103) Another Justinian Morse, perhaps the copyhold's owner in the late 17th century, (fn. 104) owned Pindrup farm at his death in 1716 or 1717 and his son Thomas (fn. 105) was succeeded in it in 1739 by Justinian Morse, perhaps his brother. In 1750 Thomas Cotton, a London banker, acquired the copyhold, comprising 222 a., and from him it passed in turn to his son Edward (fn. 106) (d. 1779) (fn. 107) and daughter Elizabeth. In 1808, following Elizabeth's death, the dean and chapter of Gloucester admitted Alexander Colston as tenant and in 1855 the copyhold passed to his nephew John Morris Colston. He died later that year and the estate was held in freebench by his widow Isabel in 1858. It reverted, presumably on her death, to the Ecclesiastical Commissioners (fn. 108) by 1860, when they granted it on a farming lease for 14 years. (fn. 109) When the Church Commissioners sold the farm (348 a.) in the 1980s most of the land was bought by Mr. A. H. Bradley of Winson and Pindrup farmhouse passed with 40 a. into separate ownership. (fn. 110)
The two-storeyed farmhouse was built on an L plan in the mid 17th century and was presumably the residence of the Morse family member assessed for tax on four hearths in 1672. (fn. 111) At the end of the north-east wing, a four-bayed, twostoreyed range, which has heavily beamed floors and originally had a blank rear wall, may have been an outbuilding, which had been converted to domestic or industrial use by 1746. (fn. 112) In work probably undertaken for Thomas Cotton after 1750 the main part of the house was given a hipped roof, its south and east fronts were dressed with ashlar, and fashionable chimneypieces and plasterwork were installed in its two south rooms. The north-east range, which has its own front door, was apparently a separate dwelling in the later 1830s. By 1867 the farmhouse was a single dwelling, the principal outbuilding, to the north-west, had been linked to the north-east range, and additional farm buildings had been provided to the north-east. (fn. 113) The attached outbuilding was made part of the house in the 1990s.
Two ploughteams of the eight recorded on the Coln Rogers estate in 1086 belonged to the demesne and five servi were among the inhabitants at that time. (fn. 114) In the late Middle Ages the demesne was farmed, and the rent under a new lease granted in 1524 (fn. 115) represented just under half of Gloucester abbey's annual income from the manor in 1535. (fn. 116) The demesne, identified later as over 400 a. from which the rector received only half of the corn and hay tithes, (fn. 117) was farmed by one man in the early 18th century. (fn. 118) Following inclosure in the 1730s it covered 456 a. (fn. 119) and with other land was divided between two farms. (fn. 120)
In 1086 the Coln Rogers estate supported seven villani and five bordars with six ploughteams (fn. 121) and in the later 1140s Gloucester abbey claimed that it had acquired the holdings of two radknights as part of Roger of Gloucester's gift of Coln Rogers. (fn. 122) In the 1260s fifteen of the abbey's tenants each held a yardland, which comprised 48 a., and owed labour services, heriots, and customary payments including pannage. Four days' work a week was required during much of the year and extra services during winter and spring ploughing, haymaking, and sheep shearing. Each yardlander was expected to perform a carrying service every other week and between Candlemas and Lammas he had a duty to bring hay from Ampney St. Peter on 3 days. Two men shared a yardland for the same services and one tenant held a yardland for half the services. Of two other yardlanders, one was a tenant at will for a cash rent and 4 days' reaping work. Of the other half-yardland holdings three, two of which were each attached to a mill, were held for life for cash rents and bedrips, two were held at will for cash rents, ploughing services, bedrips, and a monthly carrying service to Gloucester, and two were in hand. Nine mondaymen owed one day's work a week throughout the year and bedrips in the autumn; the holdings of another four mondaymen were in hand. There were also four tenants each holding 14 a. for cash rents. At haymaking the customary tenants were given a loaf each and a sheep and a cheese to share between them. (fn. 123)
By the later 13th century, and probably by the 1260s, the abbey was remitting the labour services from land it was leasing to customary tenants for their lives. (fn. 124) Consolidation of tenancies had begun (fn. 125) and some land was sublet. (fn. 126) In 1412, when two separate yardlands once held by the same tenant were in hand, it was recorded that several customary tenants, including a father and five of his sons, had left Coln Rogers. (fn. 127) In 1535 the customary tenants' rents, 6 15s. 1d., provided over half of Gloucester abbey's income from the manor. (fn. 128) After the Dissolution the lords farmer of the manor granted copyholds and received heriots and customary payments, and in 1650, when there were six copyhold tenants in Coln Rogers, the largest copyhold estate, at Pindrup, comprised perhaps as many as six earlier holdings and contained 5 yardlands. Of the other copyhold estates one included 4 yardlands, one 3 yardlands, two 2 yardlands, and one 1 yardland. (fn. 129) In 1727 there were nine copyhold tenants in Coln Rogers. (fn. 130)
In the early 17th century Coln Roger had two large open fields which were cropped on a twocourse rotation including a fallow. The north field, west of the village, was bounded by the Foss way and took in Old Gore hill south-west of the ridgeway near Foss Cross and perhaps the hillside north of the village facing Calcot on the opposite side of the Coln. The south field, south-west of the village, stretched from the Winson boundary and beyond the ridgeway to the Foss way in the south-west of the parish. If the glebe was typical, each yardland of 48 a. was divided equally between the fields usually in pieces of 1 a. or a. but the 5 yardlands of the Pindrup estate formed two adjacent blocks of land in the north end of the parish, where Pindrup evidently once had its own open fields. (fn. 131) In the later 17th century the Coln Rogers fields were described as east and west fields. (fn. 132)
At least part of the parish's meadow land, in the north-east beside the river Coln and including Simmond's and Friday's meads, was held in severalty in the early 15th century, (fn. 133) and the rector was entitled to the first grass crop from a narrow strip in the late 17th century. For each yardland tenants of the manor had common rights for 40 sheep and 2 cattle in the open fields and in a pasture called called Coln Pen; by custom in the mid 17th century the lord farmer of the manor had no common rights in that pasture and some adjoining land. (fn. 134) The pasture, in the south of the parish near the south-eastern boundary, (fn. 135) was evidently a remnant of a common pasture which once extended southwards into Barnsley. (fn. 136) In the later 14th century, long after the pasture had been divided between the two parishes, the lady of Barnsley claimed the Coln Rogers part, then known as Coln Down and perhaps as Coln Wold, and Gloucester abbey produced written evidence that it had received payments from Barnsley men pasturing cattle there and that its court had dealt with Barnsley men cutting thorns there. (fn. 137) A field name recorded in the 17th century suggests that there may have once been at least one vineyard in the Coln valley. (fn. 138)
Gloucester abbey kept sheep in Coln Rogers in the mid 13th century (fn. 139) and it maintained a sheephouse or fold in the valley in the southern end of the parish. (fn. 140) Under the lease of 1524, which reserved a wool store in Coln Rogers to the abbey, the demesne's farmer in the early 16th century had for his sheep a pasture once reserved to the abbey's flock, a sheephouse, and 4 wagon loads of hay a year from a meadow called Kingsham near Ampney St. Peter. (fn. 141) Of two sheephouses in the open fields in the 17th century one evidently belonged to the lord farmer and the other to the rector. (fn. 142)
Within a few years of becoming lord farmer in 1727 (fn. 143) Alexander Ready began buying out the copyhold tenants in Coln Rogers. (fn. 144) By 1746, having acquired most copyholds apart from the Pindrup estate, he had inclosed the parish and had divided his estate into two large farms let at rack rent, thereby reducing the number of farmers and increasing that of day labourers. (fn. 145) Following inclosure, in which Ready assigned the rector 36 a. for the open-field glebe, (fn. 146) Pindrup farm comprised 210 a. at the north end of the parish and Upper and Lower farms made up the rest of the parish, having 512 a. and 696 a. respectively in 1789. (fn. 147) The Barton family occupied Lower farm in 1746 (fn. 148) and until the late 19th century, and a branch of the family worked Upper farm by 1840 and until the 1930s. (fn. 149) The size of the three farms was virtually unchanged in the mid 19th century, (fn. 150) and they provided employment for 54 labourers, including women and boys, in 1851. (fn. 151) In the later 19th century the rector farmed the small glebe himself before one of the main farmers took over its cultivation in 1892. (fn. 152) There were 22 full-time farmworkers in Coln Rogers in 1926. (fn. 153) The parish remained divided between three farmers in the late 1930s (fn. 154) and a fourth farm was worked separately by the 1950s. In the late 20th century, following the sale of the farms, most of the land was worked by contractors employing labour from outside Coln Rogers. (fn. 155)
Coln Rogers remained in tillage throughout the 18th century (fn. 156) and wheat, barley, oats, and, to a lesser degree, turnips were the principal crops on the 596 a. recorded as under arable crops in 1801. (fn. 157) A flock of pure-bred Cotswold sheep, said to have been established in the early 17th century, was kept in the parish until Charles Barton removed it in 1828. (fn. 158) In 1839 the area of meadow and pasture was given as 154 a. (fn. 159) In 1866 only 62 a. was returned as permanent grassland but over a third of the 1,365 a. under crop rotation was devoted to grass and clover and over 200 a. to roots for animal feed; 60 a. was returned as fallow. (fn. 160) In the mid 19th century several parishioners were employed as shepherds (fn. 161) and the flocks numbered hundreds of sheep. Dairy and beef cattle and pigs were also kept but in much smaller numbers. (fn. 162) The area of grazing land increased at the expense of arable land in the late 19th century and the early 20th (fn. 163) and 260 a. was permanent pasture in 1896, when 750 sheep, 113 cows, and 105 pigs were returned for the parish. (fn. 164) In 1926, when 362 ewes, 246 cows, and 68 pigs were returned, 500 a. was classed as permanent pasture and 307 a. as rough grazing and only 308 a. as growing corn. There was also small-scale poultry farming in the parish in 1926. (fn. 165)
In the later 20th century the land was used mainly for cereal production, (fn. 166) and in 1999, when some land was set aside from cultivation, many sheep were pastured in Coln Rogers and Mr. M. Lait, a semi-retired farmer, kept a herd of Charolais cattle there. Following his purchase of Lower farm in 1985 Mr. C. Wright established a stud farm at the south end of the village and divided his flat meadows in the Coln valley into paddocks. By 1999 land elsewhere in the valley, including steep land near Pindrup and Fossebridge, had also been set out as horse paddocks. (fn. 167)
There were two mills in Coln Rogers in 1086. (fn. 168) In the later 1140s Gloucester abbey claimed a mill by the gift of Roger of Gloucester (fn. 169) and in 1221 a water mill was operating at Coln Rogers, perhaps in or near the village. (fn. 170) In the 1260s the manor had two water mills, both held with yardland for life and for cash rents and labour services. (fn. 171) One, at Pindrup, was held under a grant of 1288 for a cash rent and all customary services. (fn. 172) The other, presumably downstream in or near Coln Rogers village, was held for a cash rent and 12d. aid in the late 13th century (fn. 173) and the miller was assessed for tax in 1327. (fn. 174) The bank of a mill pond was out of repair in 1412. (fn. 175) No later record of a mill in the parish has been found but one of the river Coln's two channels above the village presumably preserved the line of a leat. (fn. 176)
Although Walter the weaver was among Coln Rogers's inhabitants in the 1260s (fn. 177) no other evidence of a cloth industry in the parish has been found. In the early Middle Ages Gloucester abbey quarried stone in several places in Coln Rogers, including the common pasture in the south (fn. 178) where Cotswold slates have been dug over a wide area. By the early 17th century other quarries and pits had given names to places in the open fields, among them 'mortar pits furlong' by the Foss way near Foss Cross. (fn. 179)
Three smiths and a glazier were recorded in Coln Rogers in 1608. (fn. 180) A wheelwright or carpenter lived there in 1717 (fn. 181) and John Millington practised the last trade in Coln Rogers in 1745. (fn. 182) There was a malthouse in the parish in 1761 (fn. 183) and a maltster died in 1770. (fn. 184) Lower farm included a malthouse in the late 18th and the early 19th century (fn. 185) and the farmer at Pindrup ran a malting business in the 1860s. (fn. 186) At the end of the 19th century the farmer at Pindrup hired out threshing machines. (fn. 187) Very few basic village trades were practised in Coln Rogers in the mid 19th century (fn. 188) and the village smithy (fn. 189) closed c. 1890. (fn. 190) Coln Rogers had a grocer in 1851 (fn. 191) and a shopkeeper in the mid 1890s and until at least the mid 1920s. (fn. 192) A surgeon resident in 1825 was a member of the Howse family. (fn. 193) In 1999, when some houses in the village were occupied by retired people and others were used as weekend homes, few inhabitants worked inside Coln Rogers.
The duty of Coln Rogers to send a tithingman to the biannual view of the hundred court was recorded in the early 15th century. (fn. 194) Gloucester abbey exercised the assizes of bread and ale in Coln Rogers. Its manor court there was recorded in the 1260s, (fn. 195) and in the early 15th century the court supervised the maintenance of watercourses and banks and enforced the abbey's fishing rights, besides dealing with tenurial and agrarian matters. Manor court rolls survive for 1351 and 141213. (fn. 196) In 1524 the abbey apparently held the court twice a year. (fn. 197) In the mid 17th century the lords farmer of the manor held the court at will. (fn. 198)
Coln Rogers had two churchwardens in 1498 (fn. 199) and, usually, until the late 17th century or the early 18th; (fn. 200) thereafter only one warden was appointed. (fn. 201) Their accounts survive from 1793. (fn. 202) The cost to the parish of poor relief in 1776 was 36 and in 1803, when 16 people received regular help and 23 people occasional help, it was 131. (fn. 203) Ten years later fewer people were helped but the cost was higher, 156 in 1815. (fn. 204) In the late 1820s it fell to 81 and in the early 1830s it was usually even lower. (fn. 205) The parish claimed two adjacent cottages in 1789 (fn. 206) and it received rents from several dwellings in the early 19th century. (fn. 207) In 1836 Coln Rogers was included in Northleach poor-law union. (fn. 208) It became part of Northleach rural district in 1895 (fn. 209) and of Cotswold district in 1974.
Coln Rogers church was built before the Conquest (fn. 210) and a priest was a tenant of the manor in 1086. (fn. 211) Gloucester abbey, which in the later 1140s claimed a hide of land by the gift of Roger of Gloucester together with the church, (fn. 212) was the patron in 1281 when the first known induction to the church took place. (fn. 213) The living remained a rectory (fn. 214) and in 1915 it was united with Coln St. Dennis rectory. (fn. 215) In 1975 the united benefice was added to that of Chedworth with Yanworth and Stowell. (fn. 216)
The patronage of Coln Rogers church, which Gloucester abbey retained until the Dissolution, (fn. 217) passed with the manor in 1541 to the dean and chapter of Gloucester cathedral. (fn. 218) The dean and chapter exercised the advowson themselves in 1546 (fn. 219) and a patron for the turn filled the next vacancy. (fn. 220) After 1551 the lessees of the manor exercised the patronage; in 1583 Roger Lygon's presentee was refused admission to the rectory because the dean and chapter had appointed a priest earlier that year. (fn. 221) In 1639 the dean and chapter reserved the patronage to themselves (fn. 222) but they did not have the opportunity to use it until 1694. (fn. 223) The previous appointment had been made in 1652 under the parliamentary great seal. (fn. 224) After the union of Coln Rogers with Coln St. Dennis in 1915 the dean and chapter and Pembroke college, Oxford, had alternate rights of presentation until 1931 when the dean and chapter became sole patrons. (fn. 225) At the union of benefices in 1975 the dean and chapter secured the right to present at one turn in every three, (fn. 226) a right later transferred to the Lord Chancellor. (fn. 227)
In the Middle Ages Gloucester abbey reserved half the corn and hay tithes of the manorial demesne, (fn. 228) a portion that was valued at 2 in 1291. (fn. 229) Later, as recorded in 1678, over 400 a. continued to pay the rector only half corn and hay tithes, (fn. 230) a partial franchise that, according to the rector in 1782, was open to abuse. (fn. 231) The rector's tithes, which provided the bulk of his income in 1535, (fn. 232) were commuted in 1840 for a rent charge of 248 12s. (fn. 233) In 1535 the glebe comprised 48 a. of open-field land and a small close. (fn. 234) In 1618 it also included two long strips of meadow between the two channels of the Coln north-west of the village, where in 1678 the rector was entitled to the first grass crop before Lammas. (fn. 235) At inclosure in the 1730s the lord farmer of the manor assigned the rector c. 35 a. of arable some way from the village (fn. 236) and in 1867 the glebe, c. 40 a., still included the riverine meadow land. (fn. 237) The rectory was valued at 7 0s. 4d. clear in 1535, (fn. 238) 38 in 1650, (fn. 239) 70 in 1750, (fn. 240) and 232 in 1856. (fn. 241)
The former rectory house incorporates on its north side a four-bayed, two-storeyed range built shortly before 1618, when it contained four separate lofts or upper rooms. (fn. 242) The house had three hearths in 1672 (fn. 243) and it was enlarged in 1776 and 1777 by the rector Hugh Price, (fn. 244) who probably created an L plan by adding a southwest wing. In the early 1840s, when the house was occupied by a tenant, (fn. 245) the wing contained a parlour and a schoolroom and domestic services were accommodated in the old range, at the east end of which was a single-storeyed scullery. In 1842, before taking up residence as rector, H. B. Forster remodelled the house to designs in Tudor Gothic style by S. W. Daukes and J. R. Hamilton. He added a west porch opening into an entrance hall in place of the schoolroom, made the house rectangular by building a south-east block containing a staircase hall, library, and dining room, and created a south garden front with a central gablet flanked by larger gables. (fn. 246) After 1906 the house was let to G. O. Ranger, who bought it on the union of benefices in 1915. (fn. 247) A south-east conservatory was added to the house in the late 20th century.
Between 1397 and 1404 at least six rectors were appointed, most if not all on exchanges of livings. (fn. 248) James Low and Thomas Low in turn held the rectory between 1527 and 1534. (fn. 249) Under the latter, a Carthusian monk, (fn. 250) and his successor the church was served by curates paid, at least in 1540, by the farmer of the rectory. (fn. 251) In 1546 the rectory was conferred on Philip Oxford, also known as Philip Williams, (fn. 252) a former monk of Gloucester abbey. (fn. 253) Lawrence Gase, his successor in 1551, (fn. 254) was also rector of Coln St. Dennis and was deprived under Mary for being married; (fn. 255) later, having obtained a divorce, he obtained a living elsewhere in the county. (fn. 256) In 1551 his curate at Coln Rogers was unable to recite the Ten Commandments. (fn. 257) William Broad, rector 157383, (fn. 258) was deemed a good Latinist and divine (fn. 259) but was presented in 1576 for not providing sermons in the church. (fn. 260) John Smith, rector 15831613, (fn. 261) was neither a graduate nor a preacher in 1584 (fn. 262) but was considered a sufficient scholar in 1593. (fn. 263) Between 1613 and 1627 two members of the Hughes family held the rectory in turn. In 1634 Robert Chaunler, their successor, (fn. 264) was presented for not reading the Book of Sports and in 1636 the churchwardens were presented for not aligning the communion table north-south at the top of the chancel and were ordered to rail it in. (fn. 265) Chaunler, also rector of Coln St. Dennis from 1635, retained the living in 1650 (fn. 266) and apparently lived in Coln Rogers in 1654 (fn. 267) after resigning it. George Darby was rector from 1652 (fn. 268) until his death in 1694. (fn. 269)
During the next 150 years the rectors were almost invariably non-resident and the church was usually served by curates. Between 1775 and 1806 the living had the same succession of incumbents as Eastleach Turville, also in the gift of the dean and chapter of Gloucester. (fn. 270) Robert Ratcliffe, rector 16941708, was vicar of Stonehouse (fn. 271) and Drs. Matthew Panting, 171839, and John Ratcliffe, 173975, son of Robert, were successive masters of Pembroke college, Oxford. (fn. 272) Most curates before 1775 were members of the Hughes family, which then had the living of Coln St. Dennis, (fn. 273) and in the mid 18th century Coln Rogers church had full services. (fn. 274) Hugh Price, rector 177587, resigned a living in Gloucester in 1777 to serve in person. (fn. 275) In 1806 the rectory was given with Eastleach Turville to the dean of Gloucester, John Luxmoore, and the following year, after he became bishop of Bristol, it was given to Arthur Benoni Evans (fn. 276) (d. 1841), master of Gloucester cathedral school. (fn. 277) Between 1812 and 1843 Coln Rogers was served by William Price, rector of Coln St. Dennis, (fn. 278) and in the mid 1820s both churches had one Sunday service, each alternately in the morning and afternoon. (fn. 279) Henry Brooks Forster, Evans's successor as rector of Coln Rogers, took up residence in 1843 and employed a succession of curates towards the end of his incumbency in 1879. (fn. 280) The last resident rector died in 1905. From 1906 the rectory was held in plurality with Coln St. Dennis, with which it was united in 1915, and the rector lived in Coln St. Dennis. (fn. 281) After the union of benefices in 1975 the priest in charge of Coln Rogers lived in Chedworth (fn. 282) and in 1999 there was a Sunday service in the church every other week.
Coln Rogers church, which evidently bore its dedication to ST. ANDREW by the mid 12th century, (fn. 283) is built of limestone rubble with ashlar dressings and comprises a chancel and a nave with south porch and west tower. Both chancel and nave are pre-Conquest, probably of the mid 11th century; (fn. 284) there is a simple external plinth, long and short quoins on most of the corners, and pilasters at intervals along the walls. The chancel arch is of a single plain order. One 11thcentury window, on the north side of the chancel, also survives. Other windows were inserted or remodelled in the 13th century or later. The south doorway of the nave dates from the 12th century and the exterior of its 11th-century north doorway was reconstructed in the 13th century with a cinquefoil-headed arch. The chancel south doorway may date from the 13th century. In the later Middle Ages the east end of the chancel was rebuilt and the tower was constructed within the end of the nave. (fn. 285)
There was some expenditure on alterations to the fabric or fittings in 1794 and 1795 (fn. 286) and a screen had been inserted in the chancel arch by 1844. During alterations in 1844 and 1845 to plans by S. W. Daukes and J. R. Hamilton the nave was restored and the tower arch was remodelled, the choir was moved from the chancel to the north side of the nave's first bay, and the porch was added. (fn. 287) Alterations in the following years included the replacement of the chancel roof in 1852 and 1853. (fn. 288) In 1890, during a restoration to designs by Waller and Son, three new windows were inserted, one on the south side of the chancel and two on the north side of the nave, the north doorway was blocked, the space below the tower was screened to form a vestry, and the east wall of the porch was rebuilt. At the same time both sides of the nave's first bay were adapted to accommodate the choir, the pulpit was moved from the north side of the chancel arch to the south side, and a stove recess with chimney was inserted on the north side of nave. The cost of the restoration was met by grants and subscriptions, including collections from Norwegian pupils; (fn. 289) John Turner, the rector, had been chaplain in Gloucester docks, which conducted much trade with Norway. (fn. 290) In 1911 the upper part of the tower was rebuilt and the screen at its base was modified; the following year an organ gallery was placed in front of the screen. (fn. 291)
The font, which dates from the early 12th century, has a large plain tub-shaped bowl on a scalloped base and has been scraped and refaced. (fn. 292) The stone pulpit dates from the 15th century, and there is a medieval wooden chest formed of a hollow oak trunk. Many new fittings, including pews, were given or acquired during the restoration of the mid 1840s and in the years immediately following. The altar was donated in 1919 by G. O. Ranger to celebrate the safe return of all those Coln Rogers men who had fought in the First World War. Ranger's other gifts to the church included a clock in 1922. (fn. 293) Some fragments of late-medieval glass, including a figure of St. Margaret, survive (fn. 294) and several windows have glass fitted in the 1860s. (fn. 295) The nave walls are bare but those in the chancel display memorials to members of the Millington family of the late 18th century and the early 19th; the monument above the chancel arch, to Mary Cook (d. 1786), originally stood, perhaps for a short time only, in the churchyard against the church. (fn. 296) The churchyard monuments include a group of chest-tombs and other memorials to members of the Barton family of the 18th and 19th centuries. The church had three bells in the early 18th century, (fn. 297) and land was given before 1683 for supplying bellropes. (fn. 298) In 1999 the ring comprised: (i) recast by Messrs. Mears at Gloucester 1846; (ii) dated 1676; (iii) by Abraham Rudhall 1716. (fn. 299) The plate includes a chalice acquired in 1689, (fn. 300) a paten donated in 1919 by G. O. Ranger (d. 1938), and a chalice of 1939 given in Ranger's memory. (fn. 301) The surviving parish registers record marriages from 1755 and baptisms and burials from 1761. (fn. 302)
In the 1630s at least one parishioner failed regularly to take Holy Communion (fn. 303) and, although no nonconformists were enumerated in Coln Rogers in 1676, (fn. 304) in the late 17th century and the early 18th several parishioners attended meetings of the Society of Friends in Cirencester; one of them had been arrested at a Quaker meeting in 1662. (fn. 305) In 1735 one Baptist was recorded in Coln Rogers (fn. 306) and in 1810 a group of Baptists, including Charles Barton, registered a house there. The same group later worshipped in one of Barton's barns, registered in 1818. (fn. 307) The barn continued to be used for services at Barton's death in 1846 (fn. 308) and it may have been the 'chapel' in which in 1851 the Baptist minister of Arlington, in Bibury, and the Independent minister of Chedworth preached alternately on Sunday evenings to a congregation said to average 100. (fn. 309)
By will proved 1775 the rector John Ratcliffe left the dean and chapter of Gloucester 100 for a charity for the poor children of Coln Rogers. (fn. 310) The principal was later invested in 150 stock and the income from it supported a day and Sunday school in Coln St. Dennis serving both parishes in 1818. (fn. 311) In 1833 Ratcliffe's charity continued to support the day school in Coln St. Dennis and, together with contributions from the rector of Coln St. Dennis, it paid for a Sunday school in Coln Rogers teaching 8 boys. (fn. 312) The Coln Rogers rectory house accommodated a school for farmers' daughters in 1841 (fn. 313) and the rector evidently had a number of private pupils in 1851. (fn. 314) It was later said that from 1841 the Ratcliffe charity paid the salary of a schoolmistress teaching the poor of Coln Rogers (fn. 315) but under an arrangement of 1845 Coln Rogers children attended a day school at Winson and the charity helped the rector to contribute towards that school's expenses. (fn. 316) In 1847, when Coln Rogers had no schoolroom and the rector was paying half the expenses of the Winson school, a school in Coln was said to receive an income from an endowment, subscriptions, and pence and its master to teach 18 children on weekdays and 29 on Sundays. (fn. 317) Coln Rogers had a day school taught by a mistress in 1856 and that school, supported by the charity, (fn. 318) was conducted as a National school in a converted barn in the village from 1866. (fn. 319) In 1875, following the union of Coln Rogers and Coln St. Dennis in a single school district, a new National school was built for the two parishes in Coln St. Dennis. (fn. 320) The history of that school, which opened in 1876 and closed in 1952, is given elsewhere. (fn. 321) From 1908 children at the lower end of Coln Rogers attended the Winson school. (fn. 322) The Coln Rogers schoolroom, at the upper end of the village, served for a time as a reading room and church hall (fn. 323) and in the later 20th century it was incorporated in the former schoolhouse adjoining it. (fn. 324)
The Ratcliffe charity, the income of which was reduced from 5 5s. to 4 10s. in 1858, helped pay the salary of the Coln Rogers schoolmistress until 1875 and Coln Rogers's share of the cost of the united school in Coln St. Dennis between 1876 and 1878. After that it paid the school fees of deserving Coln Rogers children (fn. 325) and following Schemes of 1899 and 1901 it gave cash prizes for regular school attendance. Such prizes were awarded in the 1960s when Coln Rogers children of primary-school age attended a school in Bibury. (fn. 326)