Codford shown within Wiltshire
|Population||870 (in 2011)|
|OS grid reference|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|EU Parliament||South West England|
|UK Parliament||South West Wiltshire|
The village is on the A36 road between Salisbury and Warminster. The A36 previously ran along the whole length of the Codford High Street, but a bypass was built in the 1990s which has removed the through traffic.
The village was formed from the two parishes of Codford St Mary and Codford St Peter. The two adjacent villages grew together and their union was formalised in 1928 with the approval of the union of the benefice of the two Codfords. Six years later the two parishes became one. Both churches however are still in use today. The village also incorporates the Tything of Ashton Gifford, a settlement that was cleared to make way for the principal house of the village in the early 19th century.
Anglo-Saxon records show that in the year 906 the area was known as 'Codan Ford' probably meaning 'the ford of Coda' (a man's name). The river which is forded is called the Wylye, which may mean winding, treacherous or tricky stream.
The Codford area has had a long history with Anzac soldiers and during World War I large training and transfer camps were established for the tens of thousands of troops waiting to move to France. Codford also became a depot in 1916 for the men who had been evacuated from the front line and were not fit to return to the front.
Codford's 'Anzac Badge' was the idea of an Australian Brigade Commander during World War I who wished to leave a visible memento of his brigade when it departed. This consists of a gigantic Rising Sun badge (measuring 53 x 45 metres), carved into the grass of 'Misery Hill' (exposing the underlying bright white chalk) in 1916.
The meticulously maintained Commonwealth War Graves Commission cemetery nearby is the second largest New Zealand War Grave Cemetery in the UK, and contains the graves of 97 Anzac troops, 66 New Zealanders, and 31 Australians, plus 1 Welsh Guardsman from WWII. The effect of two World Wars still resonates in the local community and there is still a sense of welcoming towards Australians and New Zealanders. Codford villagers hold a remembrance ceremony on 25 April [Anzac Day] at 6.30am each year.
The Australian Rising Sun Badge and the War Cemetery are now the only visible reminders of a period when hundreds of troops from Britain, Australia and New Zealand were stationed in and around Codford.
- William Creed, a 17th-century Rector of Codford St Mary
- Robert Dampier (1799–1874), an artist and clergyman, was born and grew up at Codford St Peter, where his father was Rector.
- James Ingram (1774–1850), an Oxford don who grew up at Codford St Mary, was Rawlinsonian Professor of Anglo-Saxon and President of Trinity College, Oxford.
- Rowland Allanson-Winn, 5th Baron Headley (1855–1935), also known as Shaikh Rahmatullah al-Farooq, owned and lived at Ashton Gifford House from 1929 until his death.
- Sir William Mahon, 7th Baronet (born 1940), a retired soldier, lives at Codford
- "Codford Census Information". Wiltshire Community History. Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 11 December 2014.
- A Dictionary of Modern Place Names A.D.Mills Oxford University Press page 85
- Commonwealth War Graves Commission/ 'Warriors For The Working Day- Codford During Two World Wars' Romy Wyeth, The Hobnob Press, Salisbury/ The Men of St Mary's & the ANZAC War Graves/ Romy Wyeth, Gemini/
- Warriors For The Working Day-Codford During Two World Wars,' Romy Wyeth, The Hobnob Press, Salisbury.
- Codford PC at westwilts-communityweb.com
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Codford.|
- Wiltshire Community History - Codford
- Wiltshire Church History - St Mary's
- Wiltshire Church History - St Peter's
- R.C.Strangman Personal Photograph Album, World War 1914-1918 held in Pictures Collection, National Library of Australia, Canberra
- Codford Village Hall and Social Centre
- The Woolstore Theatre, Codford