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Crudwell - - 1115501.jpg
Footbridge near the A429
Crudwell is located in Wiltshire
Crudwell shown within Wiltshire
Population1,057 (in 2011)[1]
OS grid referenceST953928
Unitary authority
Ceremonial county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Post townMalmesbury
Postcode districtSN16
Dialling code01666
FireDorset and Wiltshire
AmbulanceSouth Western
EU ParliamentSouth West England
UK Parliament
WebsiteParish Council
List of places
51°38′02″N 2°04′08″W / 51.634°N 2.069°W / 51.634; -2.069Coordinates: 51°38′02″N 2°04′08″W / 51.634°N 2.069°W / 51.634; -2.069

Crudwell is a village and civil parish in north Wiltshire, England. Its nearest town is Malmesbury, about 4 miles (6.4 km) to the south-west. About 8 miles (13 km) to the north-east is Cirencester in Gloucestershire. Also to the north-east is Cotswold Airport (formerly Kemble Airfield). Kemble village, about 4 miles (6.4 km) away, has the nearest railway station. It provides mainline services to London Paddington.

Links and extent[edit]

The village lies on the A429, which links Cirencester and Malmesbury. This route south to Malmesbury was built in 1778; previously Malmesbury was reached via either the Fosse Way (a Roman road), or the road through Murcott and Hankerton.[2]

The parish includes the hamlets of Chedglow, Chelworth, Eastcourt, Murcott and West Crudwell. The Fosse Way forms part of the parish and county boundary. The population of the parish changed little between 1831 and 1951, increasing from 604 to 618.[1]


The Domesday Book of 1086 recorded a large population of 107 households at Crudwell, and smaller settlements at Chelworth and Chedglow.[3] Most of the parish was part of Malmesbury Abbey's Brokenborough estate; in the 13th century the abbey had a farmstead with a fishpond and a chapel.[2] A large barn still stands to the south of All Saints' church, probably dating from the 15th century and now Grade II* listed.[4]

Manor Farm, east of the church, is probably 17th-century with additions in the 18th.[5] The former rectory, now a hotel, is from the early 18th century, altered in the late 19th.[6]

A school was founded at Crudwell in the 17th century by Lord Lucas, and the schoolroom and schoolhouse of 1670 survive in residential use, southwest of the church.[7] A new school was built in 1857, alongside the older buildings, and became a National School, then in 1949 a voluntary controlled school.[8] A small school at Eastcourt opened c. 1858 and became a National School; it closed in 1923 owing to falling pupil numbers.[2]

RAF Kemble opened in 1938 in the north of the parish[2] and is now Cotswold Airport. It was a base for aircraft maintenance and ferrying, and later the home of the Red Arrows aerobatics display team. In the 1980s the airfield became a maintenance base for the US Air Force, and military flying ended in 1993 when the site was used to store surplus equipment. It was sold into private ownership in 2001 and now houses businesses carrying out aircraft maintenance and dismantling, and technical training.

Parish church[edit]

All Saints' Church

The Church of England parish church of All Saints, which was probably begun in the 11th century, is a Grade I listed building.[9][10] Work from the 12th, 13th, 14th and 15th centuries can be seen, with alterations and restoration in the 17th and 19th.[11]

15th-century stained glass in a northeast window depicts the seven sacrements.[9] The tower has five bells, recast in 1858 by Mears.[9]

In 1151 the church belonged to Malmesbury Abbey, and Hankerton church was dependent on it; Hankerton became a separate parish in 1445.[2] The rectories of Crudwell and St James, Ashley (Gloucestershire) were united in 1954[12] and in 1987 the two churches joined with Hankerton and Oaksey to form the Braydon Brook group of churches.[13]


The village school, which was extended in 1969, continues as Crudwell CE Primary School.

Crudwell has two pubs, the Potting Shed and the Wheatsheaf Inn; and two hotels, Mayfield House and The Rectory.

There are a number of annual village events but the two largest are the Crudwell Bike Ride (June), a 24-hour "le Mans" style event which raises funds for the local village hall; and the Strawberry Fair (July) which is held on the village green and the surrounding area. Both events take up a whole weekend and welcome many visitors from outside the village. The object of the Bike Ride is for participating teams to ride continuously and see how many laps and miles they can complete in 24 hours. The Strawberry Fair is pretty much the opposite and consists of sitting on the green enjoying various selections of strawberries, cream, shortbread, drinks and just generally letting the day go by with friends and family; although sideshows, stalls and evening music performances are offered as distractions.

Notable people[edit]

In birth order:


  1. ^ a b "Wiltshire Community History – Census". Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 8 January 2015.
  2. ^ a b c d e Baggs, A.P.; Freeman, Jane; Stvenson, Janet H (eds.). "Victoria County History – Wiltshire – Vol 14 pp51-65 – Parishes: Crudwell". British History Online. University of London. Retrieved 21 May 2016.
  3. ^ Crudwell in the Domesday Book
  4. ^ Historic England. "Barn to the south-west of Manor Farmhouse (1181760)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 24 May 2016.
  5. ^ Historic England. "Manor Farmhouse (1022233)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 24 May 2016.
  6. ^ Historic England. "Crudwell Court (1022234)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 24 May 2016.
  7. ^ Historic England. "School House and School Cottage (1022235)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 24 May 2016.
  8. ^ "Crudwell Church of England Primary School". Wiltshire Community History. Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 23 May 2016.
  9. ^ a b c "All Saints Church, Crudwell". Wiltshire Community History. Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 21 May 2016.
  10. ^ Historic England. "Church of All Saints (1363888)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 21 May 2016.
  11. ^ "All Saints, Crudwell: About". Retrieved 21 May 2016.
  12. ^ "No. 40176". The London Gazette. 18 May 1954. p. 2918.
  13. ^ "Braydon Brook Churches". Retrieved 21 May 2016.
  14. ^ Persons: Ingram, George (1718–1763) in "CCEd, the Clergy of the Church of England database" (Accessed online, 27 July 2017)

External links[edit]

Media related to Crudwell at Wikimedia Commons