Braydon shown within Wiltshire
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|EU Parliament||South West England|
|UK Parliament||North Wiltshire|
Its population was 43 in 2011 and was 48 in 1881.
In the Middle Ages, Braydon was a tithing of Purton and belonged to the Duchy of Lancaster, giving rise to the name of Duchy Wood, and passed to the Crown with the rest of the Duchy. Red Lodge was a royal hunting lodge until the land was developed in the 17th century. In 1826, the Crown exchanged Braydon for other land and it thus came into the ownership of the 3rd Earl of Clarendon, who had previously leased it. In 1829 the estate was sold to Joseph Neeld of Grittleton, at which time it consisted of 1,357 acres (5.49 km2) divided into several farms, called Battle Lake, Cock's Hill, Duchy, Maple Sale, Park Gate with Roebuck, Pound House, Raven's Roost, Red Lodge, and White Lodge. In 1901 the Neeld estate was broken up, and by 1910 about half of Braydon belonged to Mr J. E. Ward, whose granddaughter Elizabeth Ward owned Red Lodge, Pound and Coxhill farms in 2007.
In 1887 Braydon was said to be "occupied chiefly by squatters, who led a wretched life".
In the 1880s the village gained a Methodist Chapel, and its records from 1889 to 1989 are now held in the Wiltshire and Swindon History Centre. The chapel is now served by the Methodist minister of Wootton Bassett. A school was also built in the later part of the 19th century but was closed in the mid 20th century.
At its greatest extent, Braydon Forest covered about a third of the area of Wiltshire, but over the centuries most of it was slowly cleared.
With its tiny population, Braydon is considered too small to merit a parish council and has instead a parish meeting. Until April 2009, it was part of the district of North Wiltshire, but most significant local government functions are now carried out by the new Wiltshire Council unitary authority. At the parliamentary level, the parish is part of the North Wiltshire county constituency and the current member of parliament is James Gray (Conservative).
- "Wiltshire Community History - Census". Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 29 August 2014.
- Swanton, M. 2000 The Anglo-Saxon Chronicles (London: Phoenix Press)
- "Purton with Braydon" (PDF). englandspastforeveryone.org.uk.
- "Braydon" (PDf). englandspastforeveryone.org.uk.
- Wiltshire Archaeological Magazine, XXIII, p. 164
- "Braydon Methodist Chapel (ref. GB/NNAF/C36656)". nationalarchives.gov.uk.
- S. E. Kelly (ed.) (2005). Charters of Malmesbury Abbey, Anglo-Saxon Charters 11. Oxford University Press for the British Academy (Oxford: trin.cam.ac.uk). p. S 234.
- 'Braydon: a study of settlement in a parish-edge forest' in Paul Pattison, David Field, Stewart Ainsworth, Patterns of the past: essays in landscape archaeology for Christopher Taylor (1999)
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- Official website