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For other uses, see Heytesbury (disambiguation).
Raymond Hall - Heytesbury - geograph.org.uk - 707153.jpg
A late 18th-century former maltings, Heytesbury
Heytesbury is located in Wiltshire
 Heytesbury shown within Wiltshire
Population 696 (in 2011)[1]
OS grid reference ST925426
Civil parish Heytesbury
Unitary authority Wiltshire
Ceremonial county Wiltshire
Region South West
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town Warminster
Postcode district BA12
Dialling code 01985
Police Wiltshire
Fire Dorset and Wiltshire
Ambulance South Western
EU Parliament South West England
UK Parliament South West Wiltshire
Website www.heytesburyparish.co.uk
List of places

Coordinates: 51°10′59″N 2°06′32″W / 51.183°N 2.109°W / 51.183; -2.109

Heytesbury is a village (formerly considered to be a town) and a civil parish in Wiltshire, England. It is in the Wylye Valley, about 3 miles (4.8 km) south of Warminster.

The civil parish includes most of the small neighbouring settlement of Tytherington, and it shares a parish council with Imber and Knook.


John Marius Wilson's Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales (1870–1872) described Heytesbury as follows:

HEYTESBURY, a small town, a parish, a sub-district, and a hundred, in Wilts. The town stands on the river Wylye, and on the Somerset and Weymouth railway, near Salisbury Plain, 4 miles SE by E of Warminster; was known, to the Saxons, as Hegtredesbiryg; took afterwards the names of Haresbury, Haseberie, and Heightsbury; is now commonly called Hatchbury; was, in the time of Stephen, the residence of the Empress Maud; was, in 1766, nearly all destroyed by fire, and afterwards rebuilt; consists now chiefly of a single street; possesses interest to tourists as the central point of a region abounding in British, Roman, Saxon, and Danish remains; and gives the title of Baron to the family of A'Court. It sent two members to parliament from the time of Henry VI till disfranchised by the act of 1832; was a borough by prescription; and is now a seat of courts leet. It has a post office under Bath, a railway station, two chief inns, a church, an Independent chapel, a national school, and an endowed hospital. The church dates from the 12th century; was partly rebuilt in 1470; underwent a thorough restoration in 1866, at an expense of about £5,500; is cruciform; has a massive tower; and contains the burial place of the A'Courts, and a tablet to Cunningham, the antiquary.[2] The hospital was founded in 1470, by Lady Hungerford, for a chaplain, twelve poor men, and one poor woman; was rebuilt in 1769; forms three sides of a square, two stories high; and has an endowed income of £1,373.[3] A weekly market was formerly held; and two fairs are still held on 14 May and 25 Sept. – The parish comprises 3,380 acres. Real property, £4,713. Pop., in 1841, 1,311; in 1861, 1,103. Houses, 237. The manor belonged to the Burghershs; and passed to the Badlesmeres, the Hungerfords, the Hastingses, and others. Heytesbury House, the seat of Lord Heytesbury, is on the N side of the town; was partially rebuilt about 1784; contains a fine collection of pictures: and stands in a well wooded park. Cotley Hill rises from the woods of the park; commands a very fine panoramic view; is crowned by a tumulus; and was anciently fortified. Knook castle, Scratchbury camp, Golden barrow, and many other antiquities are in the neighbourhood. The living is a vicarage, united with the vicarage of Knook, in the diocese of Salisbury. Value, £350. Patron, the Bishop of Salisbury. – The sub-district contains also eleven other parishes, and is in Warminster district. Acres, 27,546. Pop., 4,372. Houses, 946. – The hundred contains thirteen parishes, and part of another. Acres, 33,040. Pop., 5,572. Houses, 1,209.[4]

Heytesbury High Street

Between 1449 and 1832, Heytesbury was a parliamentary borough, returning two members of parliament.

Notable people[edit]

The poet Siegfried Sassoon spent the latter part of his life at Heytesbury House, which he purchased in 1933, and his son George Sassoon grew up there and inherited the house, which he eventually sold.

Robert Dyer began life as a Heytesbury shoemaker. The antiquary William Cunnington was of Heytesbury.

Major-General Glyn Gilbert (1920–2003) settled at Heytesbury.

Notable buildings[edit]

Cottages near East Hill Farm

The Anglican Church of St Peter and St Paul is a Collegiate Church and is Grade I listed.[5][6]

Heytesbury House, a country house rebuilt in 1782, is Grade II* listed.[7]

Local government[edit]

Heytesbury, together with Knook, Tytherington and Imber (the last of which has no residents) elects a parish council called Heytesbury, Imber and Knook. Local government services are provided by Wiltshire Council, which has its offices in nearby Trowbridge. The village is represented in Parliament by the Member for South West Wiltshire, Andrew Murrison, and in Wiltshire Council by Christopher Newbury, both Conservatives.


The A36 road bypasses the village to the north. The Wessex Main Line railway runs to the south; until 1955 there was a station at the Heytesbury-Tytherington road.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Wiltshire Community History – Census". Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 11 February 2015. 
  2. ^ (sic) William Cunnington FSA (1754–1810) of Heytesbury was intended.
  3. ^ The Hospital of St John, built to designs by carpenter-architect Esau Reynolds (1725–1779) of Trowbridge, of whom it is the masterpece (Howard Colvin, A Biographical Dictionary of British Architects, 1600–1840 3rd ed. 1995, s.v. "Reynolds, Esau"; The Hospital of St John, Heytesbury.
  4. ^ Heytesbury at visionofbritain.org.uk
  5. ^ Historic England. "Church of St. Peter and St. Paul (1036357)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 28 June 2016. 
  6. ^ "Church of St. Peter and St. Paul, Heytesbury". Wiltshire Community History. Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 11 February 2015. 
  7. ^ Historic England. "Heytesbury House (1198088)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 28 June 2016. 

External links[edit]

Media related to Heytesbury at Wikimedia Commons