No 199. Swinford Toll Bridge

The toll on this bridge is now 5p, the rights to this charge having been granted in perpetuity by George III in 1777.   It was built by the Earl of Abingdon on the King’s orders after he was soaked while crossing the river at this point.   The small town of Eynsham lies to the north of the bridge and dates from the 12th century when it was the site of a Benedictine Abbey.   Close to the south of the bridge lies Witham Great Wood which is owned by Oxford University.   It is used as a study centre and can only be entered by permission of the university as it is preserved as a haven for many kinds of wild-life some of which are very rare.