Hundred of Kingsbury

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Kingsbury Hundred
36,690 acres (14,850 ha)
 • HQKingsbury Episcopi
 • TypeParishes
 • UnitsChard, Combe, Huish Episcopi, Kingsbury Episcopi, Winsham, Ash Priors, West Buckland, Fitzhead, Bishops Lydeard, Wellington, and Wiveliscombe

The Hundred of Kingsbury is one of the 40 historical Hundreds in the ceremonial county of Somerset, England, dating from before the Norman conquest during the Anglo-Saxon era although exact dates are unknown. Each hundred had a 'fyrd', which acted as the local defence force and a court which was responsible for the maintenance of the frankpledge system.[1] They also formed a unit for the collection of taxes.[2] The role of the hundred court was described in the Dooms (laws) of King Edgar. The name of the hundred was normally that of its meeting-place.[3]

The Hundred of Kingsbury which was originally called Cingesberia,[4] consisted of six separate areas covering the ancient parishes of: Chard, Combe, Huish Episcopi, Kingsbury Episcopi, Winsham, Ash Priors, West Buckland, Fitzhead, Bishops Lydeard, Wellington, and Wiveliscombe. It covered an area of 36,690 acres (14,850 ha).[5]

At some point in the 16th century[4] it was two separate Hundreds: Kingsbury West[6] and East Kingsbury.[7] In 1663 it was recorded as having originally being a gift from Ine of Wessex to the Cathedral Church of Wells prior to 1066.[8]

The importance of the hundred courts declined from the seventeenth century. By the 19th century several different single-purpose subdivisions of counties, such as poor law unions, sanitary districts, and highway districts sprang up, filling the administrative role previously played by parishes and hundreds. Although the Hundreds have never been formally abolished, their functions ended with the establishment of county courts in 1867[9] and the introduction of districts by the Local Government Act 1894.[10]


  1. ^ "Administrative Units Typology | Status definition: Hundred". Vision of Britain. Retrieved 2010-01-31.
  2. ^ "The Shire and the Hundred". Somerset County Council. Retrieved 13 October 2011.
  3. ^ "Summary". Institute of Archaeology. Retrieved 15 October 2011.
  4. ^ a b "Somerset" (RTF). University of Hull. Retrieved 11 April 2017.
  5. ^ "Somerset Hundreds". GENUKI. Retrieved 15 October 2011.
  6. ^ "Kingsbury West". Open Domesday. Retrieved 16 October 2011.
  7. ^ "East Kingsbury Hundred". A vision of Britain through time. University of Portsmouth. Retrieved 16 October 2011.
  8. ^ "History". Kingsbury Episcopi. Archived from the original on 25 September 2008. Retrieved 16 October 2011.
  9. ^ County Courts Act 1867 (30 & 31 Vict. c. 142) s.28
  10. ^ "Mapping the Hundreds of England and Wales in GIS". University of Cambridge Department of Geography. 6 June 2008. Retrieved 15 October 2011.