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Woodsford Castle, Dorset - geograph.org.uk - 40292.jpg
Woodsford Castle
Woodsford is located in Dorset
 Woodsford shown within Dorset
Population 80 [1]
OS grid reference SY762905
District West Dorset
Shire county Dorset
Region South West
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Police Dorset
Fire Dorset
Ambulance South Western
EU Parliament South West England
UK Parliament West Dorset
List of places

Coordinates: 50°42′49″N 2°20′17″W / 50.71355°N 2.338°W / 50.71355; -2.338

Woodsford is a hamlet and civil parish in the county of Dorset in South West England. It lies in the Frome valley in the West Dorset administrative district, about 5 miles (8.0 km) east of the county town Dorchester. The valley here is wide and the fields used to be managed using a system of watermeadows.[2] Dorset County Council's 2013 mid-year estimate of the parish population is 80.[1]

In the 11th century Woodsford was recorded in the Domesday Book as Waredesford, a name which was ascribed by 18th-century historian John Hutchins to mean a ford across the Varia, the latter being an alternative name for the River Frome, although more recent opinion is that Waredesford referred to a ford belonging to a man named Weard.[3] Two holdings were recorded, which have been interpreted as corresponding to East Woodsford (the current village) and West Woodsford (now Woodsford Castle).[4]

Woodsford Castle is the surviving range of a 14th-century fortified manor house.[5] It has the largest thatched roof in the county[6] and has been restored by the Landmark Trust.


  1. ^ a b "Parish Population Data". Dorset County Council. 20 January 2015. Retrieved 21 March 2015. 
  2. ^ Ralph Wightman (1983). Portrait of Dorset (4 ed.). Robert Hale Ltd. p. 49. ISBN 0 7090 0844 9. 
  3. ^ "Woodsford". Dorset OPC Project. 2013. Retrieved 13 November 2013. 
  4. ^ "An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in Dorset, Volume 2: South East". University of London & History of Parliament Trust. (British History Online). 2013 [1970]. Retrieved 28 November 2013. 
  5. ^ "Woodsford Castle". Pastscape. Retrieved 2011-06-15. 
  6. ^ M A Rodger (February 2009). "Some Lost Castles Of Dorset". Dorset Life. Retrieved 28 November 2013. 

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