Bishopstoke gravel beach (pictured) which is created by fluctuations in the height of the River Itchen
|Population||9,974 (2011 Census)|
|OS grid reference|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
Bishopstoke, a village recorded in the Domesday Book, is a civil parish in the borough of Eastleigh in Hampshire, England. Bishopstoke was also mentioned when King Alfred the Great's grandson King Eadred, granted land at "Stohes" to Thegn Aelfric in 948 AD. The village is about a mile east of Eastleigh town centre, and is on the eastern bank of the River Itchen. It adjoins Fair Oak on the east, in the Fair Oak and Horton Heath parish. The village was annexed to Eastleigh in 1932, and was split out again as an independent civil parish later. It forms part of the Southampton Urban Area.
Stoke Park Woods
Bordering the village to the North and comprising about 207 ha (512 acres), the Stoke Park area contains 61 per cent woodland and 39 per cent arable. Its many plant species include rare quaking grass. Originally these woods were owned by the Bishop of Winchester. King John of England hunted them in 1205. In 1540 they were licensed by King Henry VIII as a fenced deer hunt.
The woods were bought by the Forestry Commission in 1948 and are now community woodland managed by the Commission to produce wood for paper pulp and timber. Local groups have been set up to fight council plans for a new town that would destroy the inter-woodland countryside and significantly damage the ancient woodland around Stoke Park, including Upper Barn, Crowdhill copses, Bishopstoke and Fair Oak Local Green Space.
Popular sites include the locally popular Eastleigh Falls, a semi-natural rapidly flowing chalk stream which supports a variety of locally rare plant and animal species. The site has been recognised as important habitat for Northern crested newt (Triturus cristatus). There are ongoing efforts by local activists to classify the area as an SSSI ensuring it's protection from the proposed development projects.
Among those born or resident in Bishopstoke have been:
- Richard Dummer (1589–1679), early settler in New England described as "one of the fathers of Massachusetts"
- Edith Escombe (1866–1950), fiction writer and essayist
- William Gilbert (1804–1890), novelist and Royal Navy surgeon, father of dramatist W. S. Gilbert
- Samuel Sewall (1652–1730), Massachusetts judge, best known for involvement in the Salem witch trials
Bishopstoke contains one infant school, Stoke Park Infant School, and one Junior School, Stoke Park Junior School. which feeds the secondary school in Fair Oak, Wyvern College. The village has a Girl Guide group off West Drive, including Rainbow, Brownie and Guide units. It is also home to the 12th Eastleigh Scouts in West Drive. Eastleigh's museum in the High Street, which is open from Tuesday to Saturday, holds several files containing information about Bishopstoke's historic past and associated personalities, such as John Bale, Samuel Sewall, and Dean Garnier.
Bishopstoke still retains many buildings dating from the 18th century, although the village is expanding and now has a number of newer built residential and commercial premises. It has effectively become divided into Old Bishopstoke and New Bishopstoke, heading roughly West to East, reflecting the recent housing requirements within the area.
- "Civil Parish population 2011". Neighbourhood Statistics. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 9 December 2016.
- History Archived September 13, 2007, at the Wayback Machine
- "Bishopstoke Parish Council". Archived from the original on 19 December 2005. Retrieved 29 November 2005.
- Vision of Britain Archived October 1, 2007, at the Wayback Machine
- Twyford info Archived 2013-03-16 at the Wayback Machine
- "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 28 September 2007. Retrieved 31 August 2007.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) Eastleigh Council Report on Stoke Woods Management
- Escombe, F. Dorothy (1935). Bygone Bishopstoke. Winchester: Wykeham Press.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Bishopstoke.|
|Wikivoyage has a travel guide for Bishopstoke.|
- Bishopstoke, Fair Oak & Horton Heath Local Community Magazine
- Stoke Park Woods Video on YouTube
- The Parish of Bishopstoke
- (https://web.archive.org/web/20160325225700/https://www.eastleigh.gov.uk/lp36 Council proposals to build a link road and 1,000's houses in woodland countryside)