Melbury Abbas

Melbury Abbas is a village and civil parish in north Dorset, England, 3 km SSW of the town of Shaftesbury, east of the A350 Shaftesbury to Blandford Forum road.

Melbury Abbas
Looking down on Melbury Abbas - - 517758.jpg
View looking down on Melbury Abbas from the southwest
Melbury Abbas is located in Dorset
Melbury Abbas
Melbury Abbas
Location within Dorset
OS grid referenceST882200
Civil parish
  • Melbury Abbas
Shire county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Postcode districtSP7
Dialling code01747
FireDorset and Wiltshire
AmbulanceSouth Western
UK Parliament
List of places
50°58′48″N 2°10′08″W / 50.980°N 2.169°W / 50.980; -2.169Coordinates: 50°58′48″N 2°10′08″W / 50.980°N 2.169°W / 50.980; -2.169

Local FeaturesEdit

Melbury Abbas is on the western edge of Cranborne Chase in hilly terrain.

Melbury Hill (256 metres ASL) is 1 km WSW of the village, Breeze Hill (262 metres ASL) is 2 km to the east of the village.

The grass airfield of Compton Abbas (247 metres ASL) is 2 km to the SE of the village.


In 1086 Melbury Abbas was recorded in the Domesday Book as Meleberie.[1]

It was in Sixpenny Hundred and had 47 households, 12 ploughlands and 4 mills.

The lord and tenant-in-chief was Shaftesbury Abbey.[2]

The Village TodayEdit

In the 2011 census the civil parish (CP) had 147 dwellings. The CP includes West Melbury and part of Cann Common. [3] 134 households and a population of 305.[4]

Church of St Thomas

Church of St ThomasEdit

This is on the south side of the village and as well as a square tower at the south west end, has a large spire mounted on the SW corner of the top of the tower.

The original stone church of Norman times had a tower with three bells, at least one transept, and a west door. It survived until 1852 when it was in poor condition and was demolished. [5]

The present church is said to cost Sir Richard Glyn £2500.00. At this time Sir Richard owned most of the village. On 21 December 1852 the Bishop of Salisbury dedicated the new church to St Thomas, whose feast day it was.

Road ConnectionsEdit

Melbury Abbas village is on an unclassified road that follows a hilltop route roughly parallel to the A350 primary route that passes west of the village between Shaftesbury and Blandford. The A350 follows a lower route through villages in the Blackmore Vale. However, much traffic uses the hilltop route as an alternative because it is straighter and passes through fewer villages. Melbury Abbas is the only bottleneck on this road, where it dips down into the valley and becomes narrower.

Dorset County Council have considered bypass schemes, but none has got further than preliminary because Melbury Abbas village is surrounded by conservation land.[citation needed]


  1. ^ "Dorset H–R". The Domesday Book Online. Retrieved 4 February 2015.
  2. ^ "Place: Melbury [Abbas]". Open Domesday. Archived from the original on 4 February 2015. Retrieved 4 February 2015.
  3. ^ "Area: Melbury Abbas (Parish). Dwellings, Household Spaces and Accommodation Type, 2011 (KS401EW)". Neighbourhood Statistics. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 4 February 2015.
  4. ^ "Area: Melbury Abbas (Parish). Key Figures for 2011 Census: Key Statistics". Neighbourhood Statistics. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 4 February 2015.
  5. ^ "St Thomas Church Guide". 2 February 2017.

External linksEdit

  Media related to Melbury Abbas at Wikimedia Commons