Harbury shown within Warwickshire
|OS grid reference|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|EU Parliament||West Midlands|
|Website||Harbury parish council|
The village is located around 4 miles (6 km) south-west of Southam, and around 7 miles (11 km) south-east of Leamington Spa, just south of the A425 road. The Chiltern Main Line runs just to the north of Harbury. The cutting in which the line runs was said to be the deepest hand-dug cutting in the world, at the time of its construction in 1852. The village used to have a station called Southam Road & Harbury which was closed to goods traffic in 1963 and to passenger traffic in 1964. It was subsequently demolished.
Harbury has ancient origins. Bronze Age cooking pots have been found in the area, and the name of the village is said to be derived from Edgar an early tribal leader. The Romans built the Fosse Way nearby. The Domesday Book recorded the name as Edburberie where it is listed amongst the lands given to Henry de Ferrers by William I. The land provided work for over five ploughs and was valued at £4. The village appears as Harberbury on the 1637 Christopher Saxton map of Warwickshire. The first mention of a post office in the village was in September 1847, when a type of postmark known as an undated circle was issued.
The Church of England parish church of All Saints has a 13th-century chancel and later 13th-century bell tower. The south aisle and arcade were added in about 1300. The font and the embattled top of the tower are Georgian additions. The church building was extensively restored in 1873.
Harbury has a former tower mill that still stands but has no sails.
The parish has recently seen proposals for development of the land known as the Harbury Estate by the owners, Follett Property Holdings Ltd, who envisage a development of houses and a business estate. There have also been proposals put forward for a new Harbury Station; however it is believed that the current infrastructure of the railway is incapable of facilitating this. The Parish Council and Stratford District Council are reviewing the proposals.
Harbury has a primary school, with around 200 pupils, Windmills Nursery school providing childcare for children aged 2 to 5 years and Harbury Pre-school, which provides sessional early years education for children aged 2 yrs 9 months to school entry. It also has a number of shops, including the 'Harbury supermarket' and The Co-op (once managed, fittingly, by the late Mrs Coop), a chemist, a grocery shop (Mugleston's Country Fayre), a volunteer run library, this is open 5 days a week, supported by Biblio's cafe (www.harburyvillagelibrary.org.uk), and a post office (confined to the corner of the Harbury supermarket) and a village hall. The village has five pubs: The Shakespeare, The Crown, The Dog Inn, The Old New Inn and The Gamecock. There is also a working men's club.
There is a large park and playground, known as "The Rec", which houses 3 tennis courts, a netball court, the 60 Seconds Arena and a strategically placed skate park right at the end near the football pitches.
The village has a small independent garage named the Bull Ring Garage, a small 'Butlers' petrol station and also a doctors' surgery. There is a well established rugby club[clarification needed] on the western edge of the village off Middle Road
Harbury is home to Justin King, the Chief Executive of Sainsbury's, and to Philip Bushill-Matthews, former Conservative MEP for the West Midlands region, and former Managing Director of Red Mill Snack Foods and author of two books. Also John Stringer, writer of a number of resources for primary science education and producer of educational TV-programs. Well respected DOP and Steadicam Operator Doug Walshe lived in the village from 1986 until 2009.
References and further reading
- Allen, Geoff (2000). Warwickshire Towns and Villages. Ammanford: Sigma Leisure. p. not cited. ISBN 1-85058-642-X.
- Pevsner, Nikolaus; Wedgwood, Alexandra (1966). The Buildings of England: Warwickshire. Harmondsworth: Penguin Books. p. 307. ISBN 0 14 0710.31 0.
- Salzman, L.F., ed. (1951). Victoria County History: A History of the County of Warwick, Volume 6: Knightlow hundred. pp. 103–108.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Harbury.|
- Harbury Villagebuzz online community
- Windmills Nursery School
- Harbury Pre-School
- Harbury Surgery
- Warwickshire Young Voices
- Harbury Rugby Club
- Harbury Juniors Football Club
- Harbury All Saints Church
- Photos of Harbury and surrounding area on geograph.org.uk