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Bremhill Parish

Bremhill, Foxham, The Tythertons & surrounding villages

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Bremhill - Watercolour by John Harris

Parish of Bremhill

The parish of Bremhill contains a collection of smaller parishes in valleys with Bremhill prominent on a hill. The smaller hamlets are Tytherton Lucas, East Tytherton,Avon, Foxham, Charlcutt, Spirthill, Stanley and Bremhill Wick. It is in the Diocese of Salisbury, Archdeaconry of Wiltshire and the rural deanery of Avebury. The village lies two miles north west from Calne and four miles from Chippenham.

Bremhill

Bremhill is located on Wick Hill, a corallian escarpment which falls sharply to the valley of the river Avon. The geology is from the upper oolite, providing loam, brash and clay soil. The Wiltshire and Berkshire Canal ran through the centre of the parish from the north east to the south west, parts of which are currently being reclaimed and renovated. eg Foxham Locks.

The name Bremhill seems to have its’ origins in the name ‘bremel’, meaning a collection of brambles, although it has previously been called Breomel (937), Bremleshill (1226), Bremhill, (1468), Bremyll (1540). ‘Hill’ is not original and is thought to have developed due to the village being situated on a hill.

Athelstan gave Bremhill to Malmesbury Abbey in 935. The Domesday Book included the manor of ‘Breme’ and at the time of Edward the Confessor assessed the parish at 38 hides. It was one of the donations of King Edgar. The chief crops grown in the 1870s were wheat, barley and beans. The area covered 5,920 acres and the population in 1871 was 1,286.

In the 1650s a beautifully wooded park-like knoll stood opposite the parsonage windows called Pinnel’s Knoll. It is in the possession of the Marquis of Lansdowne, forming part of the Bowood Estate. Pinnel was the name of one of the church wardens, Jeffrey Pinnel, in the 1590s when records began. There are also parcels of land called Jenkins’, from churchwarden Robert Jenkins in the 1590s.

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