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Pewsey, The High Street - - 1400395.jpg
High Street, Pewsey
Pewsey is located in Wiltshire
Location within Wiltshire
Population3,634 (2011 census)[1]
OS grid referenceSU1660
Civil parish
  • Pewsey
Unitary authority
Ceremonial county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Post townPewsey
Postcode districtSN9
Dialling code01672
FireDorset and Wiltshire
AmbulanceSouth Western
EU ParliamentSouth West England
UK Parliament
WebsiteParish Council
List of places
51°20′20″N 1°45′54″W / 51.339°N 1.765°W / 51.339; -1.765Coordinates: 51°20′20″N 1°45′54″W / 51.339°N 1.765°W / 51.339; -1.765

Pewsey is a large village and civil parish at the centre of the Vale of Pewsey in Wiltshire, about 6 miles (9.7 km) south of Marlborough and 71 miles (114 km) west of London. It is within reach of the M4 motorway and the A303 and is served by Pewsey railway station on the London to Taunton line.

The parish includes these small settlements:

  • Kepnal – east of the village, south of the Burbage road
  • Pewsey Wharf – north, where the A345 crosses the Kennet and Avon canal
  • Sharcott – west, by the Avon; marked on some maps as East Sharcott as distinct from West Sharcott, a short distance downstream in Manningford parish
  • Southcott – close to the southeast of the village


Green Drove, Pewsey, with the Pewsey White Horse ahead

Archaeological excavations on Pewsey Hill show evidence of a settlement in the 6th century. In the Tudor era, the Manor of Pewsey belonged to the Duchess of Somerset. Several of the village's houses were built in this era: the timber framed cruck house at Ball Corner, Bridge Cottage on the Avon and the Court House by the Church.

In 1764, the founder of the Methodist movement John Wesley (1703–1791) preached at Pewsey's Church of England parish church. The rector at that time, Joseph Townsend, was responsible for building of the first bridge over the River Avon.

The Kennet and Avon Canal reached Pewsey in 1810. Of more lasting effect for the village was the arrival of the Great Western Railway in 1862, which allowed fast travel to London and to the West Country.

In 1898 Pewsey Carnival was first held, a tradition that flourishes today with a fortnight of events, including The Feaste, culminating in an illuminated procession in mid to late September.[2]

A prominent statue of King Alfred the Great, the former Anglo Saxon King of Wessex and a local landowner, stands in the middle of the village.

Pewsey White Horse[edit]

The Pewsey White Horse from a distance

The Pewsey White Horse hill figure is located on a steep slope of Pewsey Hill about a mile south of the village, and can be viewed from several places in the surrounding area. It was cut in 1937 and is one of the smaller Wiltshire white horses. It replaces an earlier one which was possibly cut in 1785.


An electoral ward in the same name exists. The ward starts in the west at Pewsey and stretches east to Easton Royal. The total population of the ward at the 2011 census was 4,649.[3]


Pewsey has a state secondary school, Pewsey Vale School, an Academy which is a specialist Arts College. It is adjacent to the village's leisure centre and indoor swimming pool.

It has a state Primary Academy, Pewsey Primary School. The OFSTED [1] of 2012 rated it as good with scope to use mathematics more across the school. It has achieved good Key Stage Two SATS results for Wiltshire.[4] It appeared in the 100 Most Improved Schools table for its 2013 results and its 2014 results put it in the top 100 schools nationally.[5]

St. Francis School, an independent preparatory school, is just outside the village.


Wesleyan Methodist Church, Pewsey

The Anglican Church of St John the Baptist is Grade I listed.[6] It was built in the 12th and 13th centuries with many later additions, culminating in an 1890 restoration by Charles Ponting.[7] Today the parish is central to the Vale of Pewsey Team which includes many rural parishes in the area.[8]

A Methodist chapel was built in 1873 and became a church in 1932.[9]

The Roman Catholic Church of the Holy Family was built in 1964.[10]


The Greyhound Inn, Pewsey

Pewsey has a Post Office, a petrol station, and a Co-op supermarket. The village has one restaurant/wine bar and five pubs (the Royal Oak, the Crown Inn, the Moonrakers, the Coopers Arms, and The Shed Alehouse micropub[11]). At Pewsey Wharf, north of the village, are the French Horn pub and the Waterfront bar and bistro.

Pewsey is connected to London Paddington via its railway station, a short walk from the village centre.

Pewsey Sports Centre, run by Wiltshire Council, is next to Pewsey Vale School. Its facilities include a 25m heated indoor swimming pool, squash courts and a large multi-sport hall.

Jones's Mill is a wetland nature reserve by the Avon.

Notable residents[edit]

Zoe Wanamaker

Sport and leisure[edit]

Pewsey has two rugby teams and a junior club. For the 2017/18 season, Pewsey Vale 1st XV plays in the SSE South West Division, Dorset & Wilts 1 North League. PVRFC have a joint second team called Alfred's Nomads, shared with Marlborough RFC; they play in Dorset and Wilts 3 North.

Pewsey has a Non-League football team Pewsey Vale F.C. who play at The Recreation Ground. In July 2014 Pewsey Vale Youth FC was awarded 'FA Chartered Standard' Club of the year by the Wiltshire Football Association.

Wiltshire Council run Pewsey Leisure Centre which is next to Pewsey Vale School. Its amenities include a 25m heated indoor swimming pool (used for swimming, float play, kayaking and snorkelling), squash courts and a multi-sport hall (used for badminton, indoor cricket/football/rugby, basketball, volleyball, circuit training, archery and martial arts (judo, taekwondo and kung fu)).

Pewsey has a running club. A Bowls Club is located next to the Tennis club. A swimming pool and gym offer a range of courses including spinning and aqua-aerobics.

Pewsey Music Festival, established in 2007, is a celebration of live music held each August in Cooper's Field, behind the Cooper's Arms pub.[21]


  1. ^ "Parish population 2011". Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 28 March 2015.
  2. ^ "Pewsey & District Feast & Carnival". PADFAC. Retrieved 28 March 2015.
  3. ^ "Ward population 2011". Retrieved 14 March 2015.
  4. ^ "Telegraph Primary school league tables: Wiltshire". Retrieved 31 May 2015.
  5. ^ "Primary school league tables: Best results". News – Education. BBC. 17 December 2014. Retrieved 30 May 2015.
  6. ^ Historic England. "Church of St John the Baptist, Pewsey (1035703)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 29 March 2015.
  7. ^ "Church of St. John the Baptist, Pewsey". Wiltshire Community History. Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 29 March 2015.
  8. ^ "The Vale of Pewsey Team". Retrieved 8 April 2019.
  9. ^ "Methodist Church, Pewsey". Wiltshire Community History. Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 29 March 2015.
  10. ^ "Roman Catholic Church of the Holy Family, Pewsey". Wiltshire Community History. Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 29 March 2015.
  11. ^ Hicks, Amber (23 July 2015). "Warm welcome for Pewsey's new micropub". The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald. Retrieved 17 October 2016.
  12. ^ Eighteenth-Century Poetry Archive, Stephen Duck (1705?-1756) retrieved December 2017
  13. ^ Marjorie Findlay, 'Gilbert, Joseph (1800–1881)', Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University retrieved December 2017
  14. ^ A Cambridge Alumni Database. University of Cambridge, Carter, Francis Edward retrieved December 2017
  15. ^ Liddell Hart Military Archives|The Collection|YOUNG, Maj Gen Peter George Francis (1912-1976) retrieved December 2017
  16. ^ IMDb Database retrieved December 2017
  17. ^ Lewis Cohen (26 July 2007). "Hogwarts Miss is down to earth". Gazette and Herald. Retrieved 5 September 2007.
  18. ^ University of Liverpool, Department of Physics, Our Staff, Tara Shears retrieved December 2017
  19. ^ Soccerbase Database retrieved December 2017
  20. ^ BBC Sport, Winter Sports, 27 September 2014 retrieved December 2017
  21. ^ "Pewsey Music Festival". Retrieved 28 March 2015.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]