Jordans is a village located in Chalfont St Giles parish in Buckinghamshire, England. It is in the civil parish of Hedgerley. It is a centre for Quakerism. The village is the burial place of William Penn, founder of the Province of Pennsylvania, and so a popular tourist attraction with Americans. It is also the location of the Mayflower Barn, made from ship timbers that some sources have claimed came from the Mayflower. The village has about 245 households and 700 residents, with a nursery, primary school, youth hostel, village hall, and community shop. Of these, 40 houses and cottages and 21 flats are owned and maintained by a non-profit society that manages the village and its amenities.
One of several suggestions for the origin of the name Jordans appears in a seminal book on the history of the village: "Little is known of Jordans Farm before the seventeenth century.... It has been suggested that the name comes from some connection with a manorial family of Jourdemain... but a more probable origin is in an early owner or occupant called Jordan." Jordans Farm is known as Old Jordans today, and that building together with the Mayflower Barn date back to the 16th century.
In the 17th century the village became a centre for Quakerism. It has one of the oldest Friends meeting houses in the country, whose cemetery is the burial place of William Penn, founder of the Province of Pennsylvania, as well as other notable Quakers. Close by is Old Jordans, originally a farmhouse, sold by the Quakers for development in March 2006. Old Jordans was used during World War I as a training centre for the Friends' Ambulance Unit.
Jordans Friends Meeting House was built in 1688 shortly after the Declaration of Indulgence. The meeting room retains most of its original brick, including the bare brick floor, glass, panelling and benches. It suffered a serious fire on 10 March 2005, when the modern extension was virtually destroyed and the roof of the original 17th-century meeting room severely damaged. The interior of the original meeting room escaped relatively unscathed, but suffered some water and smoke damage.
The Mayflower BarnEdit
Within the grounds of Old Jordans is the Mayflower Barn on the edge of the Chiltern hills in the South Buckinghamshire countryside, about midway between London and Oxford, in the small village (and associated farmstead) of Jordans.
The farm's name seems to date back into the late Middle Ages. Its known history begins in 1618 when Thomas Russell bought it. Part of the present farmhouse was already there and Thomas Russell added to it in 1624, when he also built a substantial new main barn with timbers from a ship. Despite suppositions, it cannot be proved that the barn was built with timbers from a ship named the Mayflower that carried the Pilgrim Fathers from Plymouth to New England. However, Harris' research was speculative and drawn mostly from his claims of an oral tradition. The timbers' origins have not been verified.
A piece of the timber was taken from the Mayflower Barn and placed in the Peace Arch built by Sam Hill, and opened in September 1921. Besides marking the completion of the Pacific highway from the Canadian boundary to Mexico, the arch also commemorated a century of peace which existed between the United States and Great Britain. A plaque marks the spot where the timber was taken from the Mayflower Barn.
The well-preserved structure was a tourist attraction, receiving visitors each year from all over the world and particularly from the Americas but is now privately owned and not open to the public.
Jordans has a primary school (Jordans County First School) and Jordan's Village Nursery School.
Located in Puers Lane, the Jordans school is state-funded, catering for years 1,2 and Reception (Ages 5–8). It is a feeder school for Seer Green School, Thorpe House School and Gayhurst School and has about 60 pupils with a student/teacher ratio of 1:12. Ofsted commented "The school enjoys an ordered, welcoming and caring environment in which pupils are valued and respected and positive values and attitudes promoted." The present head is Hannah Bancroft (2015–present).
The Village Nursery is in the Village Hall, behind the Village Store on Green West Road. The Nursery School was inspected by OFSTED in July 2011 and April 2016 and judged “Outstanding” in all areas of the provision.
Jordans is located 5 miles (8.0 km) north-west of the intersection of the M25 and M40 motorways (Junction 16/1A). It is served by Seer Green and Jordans railway station, 1.2 miles (1.9 km) away, on the London to Birmingham main line. The service is operated by Chiltern Railways. There is one Beaconsfield–Uxbridge bus service each way that calls at Jordans on Tuesday and Friday (580, Carousel).
Leisure and amenitiesEdit
Jordans has a pop-up-pub named "The Jolly Quaker" which is open on the first Friday of each month. Its award-winning monthly Cinema Club "Jordans Picture House" opens on the second Friday and sometimes the second Sunday of each month from October through May. Both operate from the Village Hall, which is on Green West Road behind the Village Store.
Several annual events take place: a summer fair, usually in June; a sports day; an annual cricket match, and a village supper to commemorate the founding of the village on the nearest Saturday to its anniversary each February. The small Jordans Tennis Club is located in the village. It holds about 7 roll-ups each year.
Jordans Village Community Store was opened in 1922. It sells the usual staples and some own-brand preserves, as well as acting as a sub-post office. The shop is subsidized by a voluntary Shop Amenity Charge of £5 or £10 per month, subscribed by about half the households in the village.
Jordans has eight allotments, located next to the tennis court. The allotments used to be located in Crutches Lane, and were moved to allow a development of four homes for the elderly which were built in 2008.
Jordans is home to:
- Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne who have a mansion just outside the village.
- Bill Turnbull, a BBC news anchorman, was a former resident.
- Justin Sullivan, New Model Army frontman and songwriter was born in Jordans.
- Steve Soper, racing driver described by Motorsport Magazine as "the greatest saloon car driver of all time".
- "About - Jordans Village". Jordans Village Ltd. Retrieved 15 April 2016.
- Village site 
- "Buckinghamshire Guide". Englands Christian Heritage. Archived from the original on 22 May 2010. Retrieved 20 December 2010.
- "The Mayflower after the Pilgrims". MayflowerHistory.com. Archived from the original on 24 September 2008. Retrieved 25 September 2008.
- Timetable: Retrieved 11 August 2016.