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Cadsden is located in Buckinghamshire
 Cadsden shown within Buckinghamshire
OS grid reference SP825047
Civil parish Princes Risborough
District Wycombe
Shire county Buckinghamshire
Region South East
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Postcode district HP27
Dialling code 01844
Police Thames Valley
Fire Buckinghamshire
Ambulance South Central
EU Parliament South East England
UK Parliament Buckingham
List of places

Coordinates: 51°44′06″N 0°48′21″W / 51.735075°N 0.805877°W / 51.735075; -0.805877

Cadsden is a hamlet in South Buckinghamshire situated in the Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty two miles north east of Princes Risborough;[1] once split between Upper Cadsden, and Lower Cadsden,[2] it is now known as just Cadsden. Cadsden is in the ecclesiastical parish of Monks Risborough and was formerly part of the Manor of Monks Risborough.[3]


The origin of the name, which also appears (in fairly recent times) as Catsdean,[4] is doubtful and it is not known when it was first used.[5] If it dates back to Anglo-Saxon times, when most of the other local place names first appeared, it probably meant 'Valley frequented by wild cats'.[6] It is certainly at the bottom of a steep valley.

It is said that in 1643 a wake was held in Cadsden for John Hampden by his beloved Greencoats, whilst escorting his body back to the family home at Great Hampden from Thame, where he died following the Battle of Chalgrove Field[7]

On 30th January 1943 a Royal Air Force (RAF) Avro Anson Mk1 serial no. L7964 was on a Night Navigation Training exercise from the Central School of Navigation, flying from RAF Cranage, Cheshire. The weather conditions were poor and at 0250 hrs the Anson crashed at Longdown Farm in Cadsden [8]

The accident was witnessed by an Instructor in a second aircraft. All four crew members died, they were:

Sgt Edward A. Merry, Pilot, Sgt James R. Craven Pilot, Sgt Kenneth R. Blaskey Pilot, Sgt Albert C. Poulton Wireless Operator/ Air Gunner.


The railway service in the area was improved in 2011 with the Chiltern Mainline project. The two nearest mainline railway stations are Princes Risborough (2 miles, usually 33/40 mins to Marylebone) and Great Missenden (9 miles, 40 mins to Marylebone) with a branchline station at Monks Risborough (1 mile, 52 mins to Marylebone).

Local amenities and traditions[edit]

Cherry Pie Festival

The Plough at Cadsden is a country pub which is used by Prime Ministers due to its proximity to Chequers. David and Samantha Cameron, during one of their many stays at Chequers, watched the Whitchuch Morris Men perform at the Plough several times on Boxing Day.[9][10] There is even an old picture of Ted Heath propping the bar up at the Plough, a copy of which can be seen on the Plough's website [11]

Every year on the first Sunday in August there is a Cherry Pie Festival, which has been a tradition in Cadsden for over 100 years.[12]

Grangelands and Pulpit Hill, which stretch from Cadsden to Kimble, are a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) [13] with an array of wildlife including glow worms [14] and the bee orchid. Up on Pulpit Hill, set within Pulpit Woods, are the remains of an Iron Age hill fort,[15][16] a scheduled ancient monument.

In 2009, Bucks County Council in partnership with Plantlife International started a juniper conservation programme on Pulpit Hill where pens have been created to support juniper growth.

Chequers, the Prime Minister's country residence, is the first property encountered along The Ridgeway path north east from Cadsden. This walk was featured in an article published by the Sunday Times in June 2010.[17][18]

Whiteleaf Golf Course which occupies the land between Whiteleaf and Cadsden is a 9 hole course established in 1907.[19] During the winter months when it snows, the Cadsden end of the course is used for tobogganing.[20][21]

Local issues are addressed and events organised by the Whiteleaf and Cadsden Resident's Association[22]

Sarah Harding from Girls Aloud is a resident of Cadsden.[23]


Cadsden and the Plough at Cadsden were brought to attention when David and Samantha Cameron left their 8 year old daughter, Nancy, behind in the Plough following a Sunday lunch at the Plough.[24]

Nancy had wandered off to the toilets while they were arranging lifts. When Cameron left the pub he went home in one car with his bodyguards and thought Nancy was with his wife and their other children in another car. Samantha Cameron had assumed her eldest daughter was with her father. The mistake was only discovered when they got home.

"Thankfully when they phoned the pub she was there safe and well. The prime minister went down straight away to get her." said a Downing Street spokesman [25]

TV location[edit]

Cadsden was featured in the Midsomer Murders episode "Down Among the Dead Men" where it was called Cadsden Ridge for TV purposes.[26]

Cadsden Road is the main road through Cadsden and this turns into Longdown Hill on the way from Cadsden to Great Missenden. There is a dirt parking area for cars on Longdown Hill which is used by walkers. This car park was used in an episode of the Hammer House of Horror's where Warren Clarke (Dasil & Pascoe fame) crashed his car here. [27][28]

External links[edit]


  1. ^ History of Princes Risborough inc Cadsden
  2. ^ /Extract from John Marius Wilson's Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales (1870-72)
  3. ^ Victoria County History of Buckinghamshire (1908) Vol. 2
  4. ^ For instance in the Monks Risborough Inclosure Award of 1839.
  5. ^ It is not mentioned in Mawer & Stenton: The Place Names of Buckinghamshire (published by the Place Names Society in 1925), nor in Eilert Ekwall: The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Place Names (4th edition 1960), nor in the Cambridge Dictionary of English Place Names.
  6. ^ The Old English word denu meaning a dene or valley is common in place names, where it may be spelt -dene, -den, or -dean, and cats as a prefix usually indicated that the place was inhabited by wild cats. See Ekwall's Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Place Names under 'denu' and 'catt'. See also Kenneth Cameron: English Place Names (1961) at page 180 (on dean & den) and pages 168 & 192 (on cats).
  7. ^ "A life of John Hampden The Patriot" by Dr John Adair(1976)
  8. ^ Princes Risborough Memorials
  9. ^ Bucks Herald 4th Jan 2012
  10. ^ Bucks Herald 30th Dec 2013
  11. ^ Plough's website
  12. ^ / Bucks gathering of the last of the black cherries
  13. ^ AONB SSI
  14. ^ Glow Worm Sites
  15. ^ Pulpit Hill Iron Age Fort
  16. ^ Megalithic Portal (Pulpit Hill)
  17. ^ Sunday Times Walks, Cadsden
  18. ^ Christopher Simerville, Travel Writer
  19. ^ Whiteleaf Golf Club
  20. ^ Youtube footage of tobogganing in Cadsden
  21. ^ Youtube footage of tobogganing in Cadsden
  22. ^ Whiteleaf and Cadsden Resident's Association Website
  23. ^ Sarah Harding buys a Bucks Mansion Near Princes Risborough
  24. ^ / BBC News Story
  25. ^ [ Guardian News Story]
  26. ^ Midsomers Murders locations
  27. ^ Youtube footage of crash in Longdown Hill car park
  28. ^ / Hammer House of Horror TV series website