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We read from his account book that the drover David Jonathan – see separate tab – visited Oving in August 1844 to see a John Parrett at the Black Boy Inn (#1).  The page starts at Worcester but then goes back and forth – DJ (or perhaps a relation) was obviously listing the places he’d visited by referring to his collection of receipts, not chronologically.  Or else he was going round in circles.  Be that as it may, it got us to Oving, a beautiful village in the heart of Bucks.

Below The Black Boy is the Hossle, local name for the village pond, which local farmers used in times of drought because the water was from the only spring in the village; now it’s a bit too green for consumption (#2).  (We could have done with the water; drinks at The BB are, well, erm, not exactly cheap.)

Our first walk had a pond at the end of it, but we thought it had been created for dog-owners (the walk, not the pond), so we abandoned it.  Our second was based on the idea that the drover had probably come from the North Marston (above Oving) direction so we walked north-west to where the path meets a kink in the road, looked back and there was a great view of the BB (#3).  Unmissable, really.

Next walk was to the South-East, and this time the view of the pub wasn’t so good: so someone had planted a yew tree on the spot where the path meets the road.  It’s a rotten picture not just because I’m a rotten photographer but because it was hard to get the path and the tree in the same picture (#4) and I thought the tree more important.

The account book is held by the National Library of Wales, but they seem to be shut because of Covid.  When they’re open again, we’ll revisit and take a picture of the page in question.  As it is, all we have is the notes Christine made.  I’ve put DJ’s writing in italics :

Worcester to Wilber[castle]      - Bitford [Bidford]            - Great Mason [Long Marston, Warks.?] - Mickleton     --Morton in Marsh              - Long Campden [Compton]         - Rollright            -  Adderbury       - Einor the Hill [Aynho]  - Eineley [Evenley]              - BridgeMill [?]  - Stillbolton [?]   - Dunstyen Tavern [?]     --Lorton [Launton]           - Mr Uff Ham Green    - Grandborough                - North Marston   - Chosley [Cholseley?] Tavern  - Whitchurch (Mr Veere Woodman)       - Swanborough [Swanbourne] - Aylesbury Tavern              - John Parrett – Black Boy Oving                   - Wing Ro[ad] Tavern    - Tring -  Tom Wathers Tavern [?]            - Ignam Tavern [Ickenham]          - Harrow-on-the-Hill        - London


An afterthought: we read in a newspaper that, after Buckingham, the Welsh Lane to London vanishes for a bit, only to re-emerge at Swanbourne.  Then the route went (apparently) through Hoggeston, Cublington & Aston Abbotts (and another Long Marston!) to Tring.  Cublington was once supposed to be the site of the third London airport, together with Wing, mentioned above.  We went to visit the area in a glorious summer last year, so, as it’s midwinter now, here’s a reminder (#5).

Oving image 1
The Black Boy
Oving image 2
Oving image 3
Brollies Out
Oving image 4
Oving image 5
Into Cublington