26 Crown Road, Mulberry Court
Aerial view of Mulberry Court land and garden, late 1950s.
The present house dates from mid-17th century.
There was a John Gadbury, who was churchwarden of the Wheatley Chapel in 1553. A Jane Gadbury, possibly William’s wife, was buried on 13 July 1612. Presumably a descendant (and there were 21 children and various John Gadburys). One of these was William Gadbury and he and his family lived on the site of ‘The Elms’ (later ‘Mulberry Court’) in the ‘third last house’ from 1612 or earlier. William married a daughter of the Curson or Curzon family from Waterperry House and their son, John, was born on 31 December 1627. John became a well-known almanac-maker and astrologer, and married c.1648. Gadbury leased 180 half-acre strips from All Souls College in 37 different furlongs, and by 1635, a John Gadbury was one of ten chief landowners. In 1661 John Gadbury ‘gent’ died. The present house dates from mid-17th century. The cottage on Crown Road was the lower kitchen. The Adeane family lived here well before Mulberry Court was purchased by the son William Whorwood Adeane sometime in the 18th century. It passed out of the Adeane family on the death of William in 1782 as he had no heirs, save four cousins.
The barn has an unusual roof structure see David Clark, Cranked Inner Principals, Vernacular Architecture Vol 35 (2004), pp. 32-39.
John Gay Barns lived here, then known as The Elms, from 1892 until 1911 (or later), Miss Reynell-Pack from 1920 (or earlier) until 1943. It was renamed Mulberry Court by the owner Ivy Morgan (lived there 1943-1962) when the elm trees were felled.
In the extreme bottom left-hand corner is a large barn which would have been accessed from Crown Square (and is now the location of flats in Mulberry Drive). The datestone survives and reads GJ (Gilbert Jackson) 1720, but now undecipherable. It is believed to have been a tithe barn and also was used to house the fire engine after the Second World War, which might be why the doors are red? Just above this appears to be the site of the yet-to-built new houses on Crown Square/Louse Hill replacing the previous ones, presumably demolished by then.
Inside, there is a firepalce with a back dated 1722.