Bratton, Wiltshire

Bratton is a village and civil parish in the English county of Wiltshire, about 2.5 miles (4 km) east of Westbury. The village lies under the northern slope of Salisbury Plain, on the B3098 Westbury – Market Lavington road.

Bratton
Bratton.jpg
War memorial, Bratton
Bratton is located in Wiltshire
Bratton
Bratton
Location within Wiltshire
Population1,248 (in 2011)[1]
OS grid referenceST914523
Unitary authority
Ceremonial county
Region
CountryEngland
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Post townWESTBURY
Postcode districtBA13
Dialling code01380
PoliceWiltshire
FireDorset and Wiltshire
AmbulanceSouth Western
UK Parliament
WebsiteVillage
List of places
UK
England
Wiltshire
51°16′12″N 2°07′26″W / 51.270°N 2.124°W / 51.270; -2.124Coordinates: 51°16′12″N 2°07′26″W / 51.270°N 2.124°W / 51.270; -2.124

HistoryEdit

 
Bratton House

The massive earthworks of the Iron Age hill fort known as Bratton Castle (or Bratton Camp) are within the parish.[2]

Bratton was a tithing of the ancient parish of Westbury until 1894, when it became a separate civil parish.[3]

An agricultural machinery business, R & J Reeves & Son, had a central site in Bratton village which became known as Bratton Iron Works. Begun as a blacksmith in 1799, the company became nationally known in the 19th century and was the largest employer in the area. The firm closed in 1970 and the site is now the village play area.[4][5][6]

The Stert and Westbury Railway was built across the parish in 1900. The local station was in the adjacent parish of Edington and was called Edington & Bratton; the station closed to passengers in 1952 and to goods in 1963, but the line remains open as part of the Reading to Taunton Line.

Religious sitesEdit

The Church of England parish church of St James has 14th-century origins and may be on the site of an earlier church. It was rebuilt in the 15th century; the chancel was rebuilt in 1854 by G.G. Scott, with further restoration by T.H. Wyatt in 1860.[7] The church is Grade II* listed.[8]

A Baptist chapel was built in 1734, enlarged in the 1780s and again in the next century, with the addition of a schoolroom. Pevsner describes the chapel as "externally a gem"[9] and it is Grade II* listed.[10] As of 2018 the chapel is still in use.[11]

A Methodist chapel was built in 1870 and closed in 1952; the building was demolished in 1957.[12]

SchoolsEdit

A National School was built at Bratton in 1846 and enlarged in 1877.[13] Also around 1846, a British School was established.[14] In 1928 both schools closed and their pupils moved to a newly-built Wiltshire County Council school, which became Bratton Primary School and was extended in 1982.[15]

LandmarksEdit

In the village
On Westbury Hill

Roughly a mile west of Bratton is a former Lafarge Cement factory, which was reduced to a distribution site in 2009.[21] The factory had a 400 feet (120 m) tall chimney, which was demolished in September 2016.[22]

Notable buildingsEdit

 
Court House, Bratton

The Court House (15th and 17th centuries)[23] and Bratton House (1715 and 1826)[24] are Grade II* listed.

AmenitiesEdit

The village has a Post Office and village shop, a village hall and a pub, The Duke at Bratton.

Bratton Downs is a biological and geological Site of Special Scientific Interest.

Notable residentsEdit

  • Maria Grace Saffery (1773–1858), poet and Baptist hymn-writer, lived in Bratton.
  • Rebecca Smith (1807–1849), last British woman to be executed for infanticide
  • Rev. George Whitaker (1811–1882), clergyman and educator
  • Sir Horace Seymour (1885–1978), British diplomat, Ambassador to China
  • Major General Sir Jeremy Moore (1928–2007), Commander of British land forces during the Falklands War, lived in the village for over 20 years until his death
  • Jack Lauterwasser (1904–2003), cyclist, silver medal winner at the 1928 Olympics, Amsterdam
  • Marjorie Reeves (1905–2003), historian and educationalist, author of Sheep Bell and Ploughshare: The Story of Two Village Families which describes village life[25]

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Wiltshire Community History – Census". Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 29 August 2014.
  2. ^ Historic England. "Bratton Camp Iron Age hillfort (1013399)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 16 February 2016.
  3. ^ "Victoria County History – Wiltshire – Vol 8 pp139-148 – Westbury: Introduction". British History Online. University of London. Retrieved 16 February 2016.
  4. ^ Porter, Trevor (13 November 2009). "Then and Now – Bratton Iron Works". Wiltshire Times. Retrieved 2 October 2018.
  5. ^ Gardner, Dennis (2016). "R & J Reeves & Son – Bratton Iron Works" (PDF). Bratton History Association. Retrieved 2 October 2018.
  6. ^ Stanier, Peter (2006). Wiltshire in the Age of Steam: A History and Archaeology of Wiltshire Industry, C.1750-1950. Halsgrove. pp. 82–83. ISBN 978-1-84114-549-5.
  7. ^ "Church of St. James, Bratton". Wiltshire Community History. Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 16 February 2016.
  8. ^ Historic England. "Church of St James (1036509)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 16 February 2016.
  9. ^ Pevsner, Nikolaus; Cherry, Bridget (revision) (1975) [1963]. Wiltshire. The Buildings of England (2nd ed.). Harmondsworth: Penguin Books. p. 139. ISBN 0-14-0710-26-4.
  10. ^ Historic England. "Baptist Chapel (1036507)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 16 February 2016.
  11. ^ "Bratton Baptist Church". Retrieved 16 February 2016.
  12. ^ "Wesleyan Methodist Chapel, Bratton". Wiltshire Community History. Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 16 February 2016.
  13. ^ "National School, Bratton". Wiltshire Community History. Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 16 February 2016.
  14. ^ "British School, Bratton". Wiltshire Community History. Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 16 February 2016.
  15. ^ "Bratton Primary School". Wiltshire Community History. Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 16 February 2016.
  16. ^ "R & J Reeves & Son - Bratton Iron Works". Bratton Village. Archived from the original on 4 August 2016. Retrieved 18 September 2016.
  17. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 21 December 2014. Retrieved 21 December 2014.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  18. ^ Museums, Imperial War. "Battle Of Ethandun". Imperial War Museums. Retrieved 25 June 2017.
  19. ^ "Join in the Jubilee!". Whitehorsenews.co.uk. 9 May 2012. Retrieved 25 June 2017.
  20. ^ Gittins, Roger (19 May 2009). "English: Westbury White Horse. The construction in the foreground is a signpost erected by pupils of Adcroft School of Building in 1968 see 1638403. Incidentally the horse carving has been "preserved" by a covering of what looks like concrete! Not what I expected". Retrieved 25 June 2017 – via Wikimedia Commons.
  21. ^ "Plans to demolish Lafarge Cement works in Westbury". BBC News: Wiltshire. 17 June 2010. Retrieved 18 September 2016.
  22. ^ Mackley, Stefan (18 September 2016). "Westbury chimney: Emotions run high following demolition". Wiltshire Times. Retrieved 18 September 2016.
  23. ^ Historic England. "The Court House (1193662)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 16 February 2016.
  24. ^ Historic England. "Bratton House (1036520)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 16 February 2016.
  25. ^ Marjorie Reeves (1980). Sheep Bell and Ploughshare: The Story of Two Village Families. Granada. ISBN 978-0-586-08349-9.

External linksEdit

  Media related to Bratton, Wiltshire at Wikimedia Commons