Cuddington, Surrey

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Cuddington was a large chapelry in Surrey with a small population in the Tudor period the clustered centre of which was demolished and it never had a parish of its own. Cuddington was formally merged into Cheam and into Ewell to which it was a hamlet after having made way for Henry VIII's Nonsuch Palace in the east of the parish of Ewell.


Cuddington lay within the Copthorne hundred, a strategic and judicial division predominantly used in Anglo Saxon England to supplement the county and parish (see vestry). Within the current Nonsuch Park, where the palace once stood, is a small rise of land enclosing the foundation remains of the demolished chapel, parts of the masonry of which were used in the palace's construction.[citation needed]

In the Middle Ages the estates of Cuddington contains 1,859 acres (752 ha), and extended over the usual variety of soils, the southern part being upon the chalk downs, the centre on the Woolwich and Thanet beds, the rest upon the London clay. The place, however, existed in name only. There was no ecclesiastical parish; the land was taxed with Ewell, but separately rated, with its own overseers.[1]

It appears in Domesday Book of 1086 as Codintone. Its domesday assets were: 5 hides; 1 mill worth 3 shillings; and 9 ploughs. It rendered £9 12s. Its total population was recorded as 28 households.[2]

Henry VIII purchased the manor in 1538 from Richard Codington, who was the heir to his father's estate, and Elizabeth, Richard's wife (as was typical added as a trustee to override any interests she otherwise could have claimed for their offspring).[1]

The whole of the former village of Cuddington, with its mansion and church, were swept away by Henry VIII to make room for the palace afterwards known as Nonsuch, and its two parks — the Great Park or Worcester Park containing 911 acres (369 ha), and the Little Park containing 671 acres (272 ha), part of which remains and part of which has been converted to residential, suburban parts of Cheam. The palace was never fully completed by Henry VIII but was sufficient under Mary I of England to be used by Keeper of the Banqueting House, Sir Thomas Cawarden to entertain Gilles de Noailles, the French Ambassador. The Tudor period historian and classical civilisation connoisseur John Leland praised the palace's design in Latin verse.[1]

After the destruction of Nonsuch in 1671–2 the land in the parks was thrown into farms, of which more than one had existed before outside the park pales.[1]

The church of St Philip, Cheam Common, was built in 1876, and an ecclesiastical parish was formed for it in 1906 officially from "Cheam and Cuddington parish" however the latter terms was long out of use.[3] The latter terms has been dropped by the Church of England.[4]

The land that in the medieval era Cuddington chapelry represented therefore, although already long re-configured with its various new statuses in common memory and use, became part of Epsom Rural District and became part of the borough of Epsom and Ewell in 1933, with portions to the northeast and south becoming part of Cheam.[5]


  1. ^ a b c d H.E. Malden (editor) (1911). "Parishes: Cuddington". A History of the County of Surrey: Volume 3. Institute of Historical Research. Retrieved 25 October 2013. 
  2. ^ Cuddington Domesday Open Domesday
  3. ^ H.E. Malden (editor) (1912). "Parishes: Cheam". A History of the County of Surrey: Volume 4. Institute of Historical Research. Retrieved 25 October 2013. 
  4. ^ Cheam St Dunstan Church of England. Retrieved 2013-10-25
  5. ^ Great Britain Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, Cuddington. Retrieved 16 May 2010.

Coordinates: 51°21′25″N 0°13′55″W / 51.357°N 0.232°W / 51.357; -0.232