St Peter's Church
Brimpton shown within Berkshire
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Brimpton is a rural village and civil parish in Berkshire, South East England, with a population of 613. The village is located between the River Kennet and the River Enborne, and is near the Hampshire county boundary.
Evidence of Bronze Age inhabitation of Brimpton is in five round barrows located at the southern boundary of the parish adjoining Baughurst. Known as "Borson Barrows", the tumuli were referred to in an Anglo-Saxon charter in AD 944. There have also been Iron Age and Roman settlements identified within the parish. The hypocaust of a villa was once uncovered in the village, though records of its exact location no longer exist. One possible location is opposite Brimpton House near the parish church.
In the 10th century, 10 hides of land in Brimpton were given to Ordulf (or Ordwulf), a thegn of Edmund I. The Domesday Book of 1086 lists the village as "Brintone", and identifies Robert FitzGerald and Ralph de Mortimer as the lords of the manors of Shalford and Brimpton respectively. It also mentions two churches, three mills, and a dairy.
Brimpton was visited by William Cobbett on 30 October 1822 on his way to London; he noted its name as "Brimton", but did not write further about the village. John Marius Wilson's Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales (1870–1872) described Brimpton as "a parish in Newbury district, Berks; on the rivers Emborne and Kennet".[spelling?] Wilson noted that the area of the village measured 1,692 acres (685 ha) and had property to the value of £3,720. The population was 452, divided amongst 101 residential buildings. He described the vicarage, at that time under the patronage of Rev. G B Caffin, as worth £351. He wrote that the church was "good", with charities of £84. Wilson wrote that a preceptory of the Knights Templar (Shalford Preceptory) was established in Brimpton in the 13th century.
Lords of the Manor
At the time of Edward the Confessor, Brimpton Manor was owned by Godwin, Earl of Wessex (Edward's father-in-law). It was later owned by Ralph de Mortimer (at the time of the Domesday Survey) and, subsequently, his son Hugh. Hugh's son, Roger Mortimer of Wigmore, succeeded him as lord of the manor, and the ownership passed through the Mortimer of Wigmore family. The manor passed through marriage to the Earldom of March. Edmund Mortimer, 5th Earl of March died childless in the 1420s and the manor was inherited by Richard, Duke of York. After his death in 1460, the manor was owned by his wife Cecily Neville, until its ownership was reverted to the crown on her death.
In the Domesday Survey, Shalford Manor was owned by Robert FitzGerald. It had previously been under the ownership of Brictric, a Saxon freeman and thegn to Edward the Confessor. After FitzGerald's death, his estates passed to his brother Gerald, and subsequently to Gerald's son, Roger. On Roger's death, his son – William de Roumare, Earl of Lincoln – inherited the manor. William's son predeceased him, so the manor passed to his grandson – also named William. During this ownership, Simon de Ovile – a tenant of William – granted use of the 3.5 hide estate to the Knights Hospitaller. Letters Patent dated 29 November 1302 show that the Knights hosted Edward I at Shalford.
The Knights held the manor until their dissolution in 1540. After this, the manor was owned by the crown.
In 1544, Henry VIII exchanged the manor with William Wollascott for the manor of Dalehall in Lawford, Essex. Wollascott's son, also named William, purchased the manor of Brimpton in 1595. When he became lord of the manor upon his father's death in 1618, he became owner of both manors.
One suggested origin of the name of Brimpton comes from "Brynni's Town"; Brynni was an Anglo-Saxon owner of the land. A more likely explanation is that Brimpton stands on a hill, and the name comes from a Saxo-Celtic version of "Hill Town"; the Celtic word for hill being "bryn". This name was probably coined in reference to the Iron Age settlement.
Brimpton has also been recorded as Brinniggetun and Bryningtune (in the 10th century) and Brintone (in the 11th century). More recent alternative names include Brinton, Brimton, Brumton and Brumpton.
The mean age of residents was 38.74, and the median was 40.
There have been at least three churches in Brimpton, two of which are still in use. The main Anglican church is dedicated to St Peter, and is a Grade II listed building. It was built in 1869 in designed in the 14th-century style. The flint building has a tower (with an octagonal shingled spire) and a wooden porch. The roof is tiled. The interior has a chancel, organ chamber, vestry, a nave with three bays and two aisles, and is faced with ashlar. The structural columns are granite. The belfry holds four (non-ringable) bells, dating from 1624 to 1842. The oldest bell, the fourth, was recast by Mears and Stainbank in 1876.
The chapel of St Leonard, a 14th-century stone building, is located on Manor Farm. It was used as the place of worship of the Shalford Preceptory, a group of Knights Templar (and later Knights Hospitaller) who had formed in the 13th century. By 1614, the chapel had been converted into a barn at Brimpton Court.
It is located in the West Berkshire district, east of Newbury and to the south of the A4 road. Other villages nearby include Aldermaston, Woolhampton and an extension of Brimpton, Brimpton Common. The entire village is surrounded by the Wasing Estate. The River Enborne passes close by to the Southeast.
Services in the village include a village shop called 'Forge Stores' (now a charity shop)[clarification needed], Ruth Mills Therapies, the Three Horsehoes public house, Brimpton Church and Brimpton School. There is also a village hall that is used by organisations such as the Brimpton Women's Institute.
At the centre of the village is the war memorial remembering the twenty two residents of Brimpton who died in the First World War and the two who died in the Second World War.
Brimpton Airfield is located a mile east of the village, a quiet 500 metre grass runway where a few light aircraft are based.
- Brimpton Baptist Church (2010), About us, Brimpton, Berkshire, retrieved 2 January 2011
- Cobbett, W (1830), "Oct. 7th to Nov. 30th, 1822: Hampshire, Surrey, and Sussex", Rural Rides in the Counties, retrieved 1 January 2011
- Domesday Book Online (2010), Berkshire, retrieved 2 January 2011
- Ford, D (2004), "Brimpton", Royal Berkshire History (Finchampstead, Berkshire: Nash Ford Publishing), retrieved 1 January 2011
- Maple, L (2008), Pub Walks in the Thames Valley, Newbury, Berkshire: Countryside Books, ISBN 978-1-84674-081-7
- Office for National Statistics (2004a), "Parish Headcounts – Area: Brimpton CP (Parish)", Neighbourhood Statistics, retrieved 8 January 2011
- Office for National Statistics (2004b), "Parish Profile (People) – Area: Brimpton CP (Parish)", Neighbourhood Statistics, retrieved 8 January 2011
- Page, W; Ditchfield, P H (1924), A History of the County of Berkshire 4, London: Victoria County History
- Wilson, J M (1872), "County of Berkshire", Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales, retrieved 1 January 2011
Media related to Brimpton at Wikimedia Commons