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Elstead Mill DSC 2398.jpg
Elstead Mill
Elstead is located in Surrey
Location within Surrey
Area11.04 km2 (4.26 sq mi)
Population2,557 (Civil Parish 2011)[1]
• Density232/km2 (600/sq mi)
OS grid referenceSU907437
Civil parish
  • Elstead
Shire county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Post townGodalming
Postcode districtGU8
Dialling code01252
AmbulanceSouth East Coast
UK Parliament
List of places
51°11′02″N 0°41′53″W / 51.184°N 0.698°W / 51.184; -0.698Coordinates: 51°11′02″N 0°41′53″W / 51.184°N 0.698°W / 51.184; -0.698

Elstead is a civil parish in Surrey, England with shops, houses and cottages spanning the north and south sides of the River Wey; development is concentrated on two roads that meet at a central green. It includes Pot Common its southern neighbourhood. Hamlets in the parish, marginally separated from the village centre, are Charleshill and Elstead Common, both rich in woodland. Elstead lies between Farnham and Godalming on the B3001 road about 2.2 miles (3.6 km) west of the A3 Milford interchange.


Elstead's relative prosperity over the centuries can be partly attributed to the existence of the availability of a site for a watermill and a bridge over the river;[citation needed] parts of the bridge are dated to around 1300.[2]

The first known reference to Elstead is in the 1128 foundation charter for Waverley Abbey (sometimes spelt Waverly), where it was called Helestede. The church of St James was built around ten years later. It still contains 13th-century windows and some 14th-century timbers[3] and is a Grade II* listed building.[4]

Elstead Old Bridge, built circa 1300

In the 14th century, the Scheduled ancient monument bridge was built over the River Wey. Today this old bridge, strengthened by Surrey County Council in 1993, takes the westward traffic; eastward traffic takes the new bridge alongside.[2]

Elstead had a forge built in 1686 which is now an office.[citation needed]

Elstead Mill, now a pub restaurant, was occupied by Oliver Cromwell’s ‘roundhead’ army during the English Civil War but subsequently burnt down.[5] The present structure is described in its listing as being the result of several re-buildings from the 16th century.[6]

There are two other pub restaurants, The Woolpack and The Golden Fleece, reflecting the early dependence on the local wool trade, also three cafe's and a fish & chip shop.[7]

During the 18th and 19th centuries, Elstead was known for the quality and quantity of carrots grown there, with daily shipments by train from nearby Milford Station up to London's Covent Garden market during the growing season. This is attributed to the light sandy soils in the village which are excellent for carrot growing.

In 1997 a millennium oak was planted at the southern apex of the village green under the auspices of the afternoon WI.[8]


Panorama of the first village green: at the junction of the B3001 and Thursley Road. North is to the centre. By the church is a smaller green.

Elstead is surrounded by common land, including Royal Common, Ockley Common, Elstead Common and Hankley Common which is used by the British Army for training purposes and by others as a filming location. Much of the heathland area has environmental protection for rare birds, insects and reptiles.

Thundry Meadow, close to Elstead, is a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSI) and is an important breeding area for the dragonfly and damselfly.


The western hamlet Charleshill, is on the opposite (left) bank of the River Wey on the B3001 to Farnham, half of the hamlet being in Tilford. Its public house is The Donkey originally called The Half-way House. The pub was converted from two small cottages in 1850, which at that time were owned by Farnham United Brewery. It acquired the nickname of "The Donkey", as before the days of motor traffic, donkeys were kept tethered outside the Inn to help horses and carts up the hill; it officially became named this in 1947.[9]

Demography and housing[edit]

2011 Census Homes
Output area Detached Semi-detached Terraced Flats and apartments Caravans/temporary/mobile homes shared between households[1]
(Civil Parish) 521 329 139 68 34 0

The average level of accommodation in the region composed of detached houses was 28%, the average for apartments was 22.6%.

2011 Census Key Statistics
Output area Population Households % Owned outright % Owned with a loan hectares[1]
(Civil Parish) 2,557 1,085 44.5% 29.1% 1,104

The proportion of households in the civil parish who owned their home outright compares to the regional average of 35.1%. The proportion who owned their home with a loan compares to the regional average of 32.5%. The remaining % is made up of rented dwellings (plus a negligible % of households living rent-free).

Sports and facilities[edit]

Elstead marathon.The adult five mile race at the river Wey bridge

The Elstead Village Tennis Club was formed in 1989 and now has five floodlit all weather courts and a clubhouse with parking.[10]

Elstead Cricket Club, founded in the 1880s,[11] are based in the self-built pavilion on the Thursley Road recreation ground.

Elstead Royal British Legion has a club house.[12] There is a bowling green, an activity hall, and an outbuilding used as a commercial tea-room.

The village hall plays host to the Elstead Badminton Club every Tuesday evening.[13]

Elstead Sharks are the junior soccer club and the Elstead Marathon has been held for over 100 years.[14][15]

Elstead pancake race is held on a convenient day, near to Shrove Tuesday.[16]

Pubs and Bars[edit]

The Woolpack

Elstead has three pubs. The Golden Fleece, and The Mill are all on the Farnham Road. The Woolpack is on the Village Green. Both the Royal British Legion Branch and the cricket pavilion, The Pav, are on the Thursley road.

Notable residents[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Key Statistics; Quick Statistics: Population Density United Kingdom Census 2011 Office for National Statistics Retrieved 21 November 2013
  2. ^ a b Historic England. "Details from listed building database (1005921)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 17 June 2012.
  3. ^ History of Elstead Church Archived 24 August 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ Historic England. "Details from listed building database (1188415)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 17 June 2012.
  5. ^ "The Mill at Elstead, Godalming - Fuller's Pub and Restaurant Elstead". www.millelstead.co.uk. Retrieved 31 March 2021.
  6. ^ Historic England. "Details from listed building database (1044454)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 17 June 2012.
  7. ^ "Food & Drink – Elstead Village". Retrieved 31 March 2021.
  8. ^ Farnham Herald 1997
  9. ^ History and the Donkey Archived 25 February 2012 at the Wayback Machine
  10. ^ "About EVTC | Elstead Village Tennis Club". Retrieved 30 May 2020.
  11. ^ [1]
  12. ^ "Royal British Legion Branches in Surrey - Surrey - The Royal British Legion". counties.britishlegion.org.uk. Retrieved 30 May 2020.
  13. ^ [2]
  14. ^ [3]
  15. ^ "Elstead 'marathon' - Friday 5th July". Waverley Harriers Running Club. 9 July 2013. Retrieved 30 May 2020.
  16. ^ Live, Surrey (17 February 2010). "Pancake tossers brave the rain and cold". getsurrey. Retrieved 30 May 2020.

External links[edit]