The Old Post Office
The Old Post Office Guest House has been the Sansum family home for four generations. The original house was built in the 17th Century on the grounds where the local tannery once resided. Originally a small holding farm, it was combined with the old bake house during the 1800’s, which now houses some of our guest suites. Indeed, our breakfast room still contains the original well used in the bread-making process. The Post Office was added to the house circa 1850, making it a focal point in everyday village life. Despite it’s eminent comforts and state-of-the-art amenities, the guest house still retains much of it’s old world features and charms today, making it the ideal place to stay for guests with an interest in history and a sensitivity to culture.
The main part of the name, Marston, is a common English village name meaning marsh farm. It is (at least in most cases) derived from the two Old English words mersc, meaning marsh, and tun, meaning farm or village. However, one time inhabitant Alfred Williams, the poet and prose writer, stated that in this case the name made derived from another Saxon origin, Merestane or Merestone, meaning Markstone.
Despite the name Marston being of Saxon origins, pre-dating the Norman arrival in 1066, the village is not mentioned in the Doomsday Book, the great survey of all the land and possessions throughout the country ordered by William I and compiled in 1086. A mere fifty-four years after the book was compiled, the village had it’s own church, a fact giving rise to theory that the locals of the time bribed officials to remain off the great census.
It is said that there were Roman remains just outside South Marston (on a field of Rowborough Farm), which have long disappeared. The presence of Ermin Way, close to the south west side of the village, separating it from Stratton St Margaret, seems to add weight to this. Ermin Way is one of the great Roman roads of Britain. It runs from Gloucester (Glevum) via Cirencester (Corinium) to Silchester (Calleva Atrebatum). Much of it is now covered by the modern A417, A419 and B4000 roads. In addition to this, there was a Roman station at Durocornovium (now Wanborough) just 2 miles south of the village.