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Friday, 10 February 2012 05:57

Great Bedwyn - The OPC is Paul Vivash

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Great Bedwyn - St. Mary Great Bedwyn - St. Mary
Great Bedwyn (East Grafton) - St. Nicholas Great Bedwyn (East Grafton) - St. Nicholas Image Courtesy of Nick Temple-Fry

Great Bedwyn Photo Gallery

Contiguous Parishes (our neighbours)

Burbage - Chute - Collingbourne Kingston - Little Bedwyn - Shalbourne



GenUKI - For information relating to Wiltshire and Great Bedwyn
Great Bedwyn - Village Website
Wiltshire & Swindon History Centre - The Wiltshire County Archives for all historical documents and the place to obtain original copies
Wiltshire Community History - Historical information for parishes within the Wiltshire County jurisdiction.
Register of One-Place Studies - Great Bedwyn Entry


The Parish Church of St. Mary

Humble in appearance is the parish church of the ancient borough of Great Bedwyn near the Berkshire border.  Unimpressive externally it has a perfect late twelfth century nave with circular pillars carrying pointed arches enriched with carving.  A spacious crossing flanked by large transepts leads to a long 13th Century chancel lit by lancet windows.  Among the monuments in the chancel is that to Sir John Seymour, Warden of neighbouring Savernake Forest, who died in 1536 and was buried in the vanished Priory of Easton Royal.  After the Dissolution of the Monasteries his son transferred his father's tomb to Great Bedwyn.  The church of St. Mary was built completely of flint most of which was completed during the 12th and 13th Centuries and is one of the largest churches in the area.                 St. Mary Church Gallery                St. Mary Interior               St. Mary Churchyard

Hemingby's Register (Church Entries) 1334-1345 Extracts from the Registers of John Chandler 1404-1417 Incumbents List 1565-1846
Churchwardens Accounts Extract 1743-1872 Churchwardens 1745-1852  

Parish Registers held at WSHC

Baptisms 1844-1925
Marriages 1844-1969
Burials 1844-1902


Parish History

Great Bedwyn includes the tythings of Crofton with Wolfhall, East Grafton, Martin, Wexcombe and Wilton.  It also includes the demesne of Tottenham Park and the hamlet of Wolfhall

Domesday Book Entry 1086


Collectanea Topographica Et Genealogica, Volume 5 - An account on church matters from page 20 onwards by Rev. John Ward, published in 1838
A History of the County of Wiltshire: Volume 16: Kinwardstone Hundred - A history of the village published in 1999

Civil Registration

1837 - April 1937 Hungerford Registration District
April 1937 - Present Marlborough Registration District


Buildings and Land

Hemingby's Register (Land Entries) 1345           Tithe Apportionments 1850           Owners of Land 1873               


Savernake Cottage Hospital 1869            


Ordnance Surveyor's Drawings 1808-1809

Post Office

The post office at Great Bedwyn has become a unique talking point for visitors to this East Wiltshire haunt.  Lloyds stonemasons have embellished the post office walls with some of their historical works of art.  The post office forecourt is used to display several monumental adornments creating a museum of stonemasonry within the town.  One such plaque reads:-

Here lies John Higgs, A famous man for killing pigs, For killing pigs was his delight , Both morning afternoon and night, Both heats and colds he did endure, Which no physician could ere cure, His knife is laid his work is done, I hope to Heaven his soul has gone.

Public Houses

Public Houses Gallery

Cross Keys
Three Tuns


Railway Gallery 

Savernake Estate       

Sale of Savernake Estate 1929               Savernake Estate Sold 1929 


Crime and Legal Matters 

Court Sessions

Court Appearance Emerson Lewis Bartholomew 1914

Eyre Rolls 1249               Feet of Fines 1284-1314                Feet of Fines 1377-1509                 Quarter Sessions 1563-1592                  Quarter Sessions Lists 1735-1736          


Extent For Debts 1351-1506

Miscellaneous Items

William de Braybuf, Snr., Justice 1276-1284                  Crime Reports 1800-1849                                 


Gaol Delivery 1275-1306                 Committed to the Devizes House Of Correction 1800-1849                  Inmates of Gloucester Gaol 1815-1879     

Quarter Sessions

Court Appearances

Thomas Bartholomew 1908

Victims of Crime

Annie Elizabeth Elkins 1908

Swing Riots

Robert Vivash, Swing Rioter 1830             Swing Riot Trial of Charles Pizzie 1831



Universal British 1793-1798 Pigots 1830 Post Office 1855 Post Office 1875 Kellys 1915 Post Office Telephone 1920
Swindon & District 1928          




Emigration and Migration

Published in tables from the Poor Law Commissioners Annual Reports for 1835, 1836 and 1847-1848 the following may be of use for tracing missing ancestors.  5 paupers emigrated to Australia on an assisted emigration programme between April 1840 and April 1841

Strays Index


Employment and Business

Business Gallery       

Agriculture and Land

Gamekeepers Certificates 1807


John Bathe 1710                 William Wilmett 1710/11               John Collins 1711               Robert Vivash 1715               Ralph Broad 1715/16               Michael Wilmott 1717

Emergency Services

Sergeant Enos Molden 1843-1892     

General Items

Stuart Tradesmen 1602-1625     


Coroner Candidate William Reeves 1767                 General Medical Council Registrations 1859-1959

Stone Masons         

Lloyds Monumental Sculptors

Lloyds Gallery            A Short History of Lloyds


Miscellaneous Documents


Non Conformity and Other Places of Worship

Meeting House Licenses


People and Parish Notables

People Gallery

Coroners Bills

County coroners were introduced in England in around 1194 once established other boroughs and liberties sought the right to have their own coroner.  Often in Medieval times the coroner also assumed the role of the sheriff and his duties weren't limited to holding inquests on dead bodies although almost a full time post they were unpaid for the duties apart from those that were deemed murder of manslaughter when they would receive 13s. 4d.   From the 24th June 1752 a law was passed allowing the coroner to claim £1 for every inquest they attended not held in a gaol and also to claim 9d per mile travel allowance from the place of residence.  Inquests held in any gaol were performed at a rate totalling no more than £1.  These costs were to be paid from the county rates.  In cases of homicide the coroner also received the former fee of 13s. 4d.  The coroners submitted their bills at the quarter session sittings for approval.  Coroners Bills 1752-1796          

Inquest Reports

James Edward Aldridge 1861                 James Long 1865

Elections, Polls and Voters Lists

Poll of Freeholders 1772          Poll Book 1818           Poll Book 1865           Poll Book Analysis for Polling District July 1865      

Council Elections

County Council Election Notice 1925                 

MP Nominations

MP Nominations 2015

Miscellaneous Items

People News 1700-1799

Parish Notables

Thomas Willis, Specialist Physician in anatomy, neurology & psychology

Personal Research Items

Tuck Family Research Burial Extracts - This item was donated by Ken Tuck and contains entries that may or may not relate to the Tuck family however they have been published as such.  Many refer to Quaker burials found across the county


Cricket Matches          Football Team 1908-1909


Tax List 1332 (Borough)        


Poor Law, Charity and The Workhouse

Overseers of the Poor 1743-1829



National Probate Index 1858-1966

Inquisitions Post Mortem of Lands Held

William, Earl of Pembroke 1630               Thomas Bushell 1634

Parishioners Wills

Christian Norris 1748               Amelia Thatcher Proved 1850          


War, Conflict and Military Matters

War Memorials & Military Gallery

Why the Poppy Servicemen & Families with the 1st Wilts. Regt. in South Africa 1911 Diocese of Salisbury Memorial Book 1914-1918
Roll of Honour Plaque 1939-1945 Great Bedwyn War Memorial  




Parishioners Wills

Vincent Goddard 1594



Wexcombe Village Gallery

Crime and Legal Matters


Quarter Sessions Lists 1735-1736

Prisons and Prisoners

Gaol Delivery 1275-1306      


People and Parish Notables

Coroners Bills 1752-1796

Elections, Poll and Voters Lists

Poll Book 1818

Inquest Reports

Ann Smith 1866



Parishioners Wills

John Barnes Proved 1624

Read 11874 times Last modified on Friday, 08 February 2019 08:32

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