Woodford, Wiltshire

Woodford is a civil parish in southern-central Wiltshire, England, on the west bank of the Salisbury Avon, about 4 miles (6 km) north of Salisbury. Its settlements are the villages of Lower Woodford, Middle Woodford and Upper Woodford,[2] the last of which is the largest of the three. In 1871, the population was 523;[2] in 1951, this had decreased to 405 people.[3]

Middle Woodford Village Hall - geograph.org.uk - 864197.jpg
Village Hall, Middle Woodford
Woodford is located in Wiltshire
Location within Wiltshire
Population443 (in 2011)[1]
OS grid referenceSU123372
Civil parish
  • Woodford
Unitary authority
Ceremonial county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Post townSalisbury
Postcode districtSP4
Dialling code01722
FireDorset and Wiltshire
AmbulanceSouth Western
EU ParliamentSouth West England
UK Parliament
List of places
51°08′02″N 1°49′30″W / 51.134°N 1.825°W / 51.134; -1.825Coordinates: 51°08′02″N 1°49′30″W / 51.134°N 1.825°W / 51.134; -1.825

In 972, the name was recorded as Wuduforda, which in Old English means "ford in or by a wood", from wudu + ford.[4] In the nineteenth century it was pronounced 'oodford.[5]


Woodford is mentioned in the days of Henry III, namely there being a knight, Sir William Woodford of Woodford.[6] A palace existed here, used by the Bishops of Salisbury, but only a few carved stones remain on the site;[2] the palace was the hiding place of Charles II after the Battle of Worcester in September 1651.[7] The buildings of Druid's Lodge (also known as Woodford Hut),[8] in the north-west of the parish, were used as a prisoner-of-war camp during the Second World War, but they no longer exist.[3] Nearby there is a small stone shelter, erected as a memorial to Lieutenant Colonel F. G. G. Bailey (d. 1951), who resided at Lake House, Wilsford.[3] Woodford Church of England Primary School was erected between 1833 and 1836, and increased in size in 1854.[3] In 1880 the chief landowners were Ecclesiastical Commissioners, and Robert Loder.[2]


Woodford is approximately 2,780 acres (1,130 ha) in size. On a hill slope southwest of Druid's Head, there is a large and old enclosure that was formed by a bank.[8]

Lower Woodford Water Meadows is a 23.9 hectares (59 acres) biological Site of Special Scientific Interest in Lower Woodford, notified in 1971. Of the working water-meadows in southern England that are associated with chalk streams, the best is situated at Lower Woodford.[9]

Notable buildingsEdit

Heale House, Middle Woodford
All Saints Parish Church, Middle Woodford
The Wheatsheaf Inn, Lower Woodford

Heale House, near Middle Woodford, is Grade I listed[10] and is an example of Georgian architecture that dates to around 1730; it is surrounded by notable gardens.[11][12] Additions were made to the house in 1894 by Detmar Blow.[13]

The Church of England parish church of All Saints at Middle Woodford is Grade II listed.[14] It has 12th-century origins but was much restored in 1845 by T.H. Wyatt. A monument to Gerard Erington of Heale is dated 1596.[15] A list of All Saint's Prebends from 1220 to 1860 is displayed in the church. These include Robert, Archdeacon of Dorset who became the first antipope residing in Avignon in France, with the title Pope Clement VII.[16]

At Lower Woodford, the 17th-century Manor House is Grade II listed.[17] Avon Cottage, a timber-framed house originally built in the 15th century, was recased in red brick in the late 18th or early 19th century, with 20th-century additions to the south and east.[3] The collar-beam roof was reconstructed in the late 16th or early 17th century when a ceiling was added in the hall.[3]The Court House, on the eastern side of the road, was part of Woodford Manor estate until 1920 when it was sold to Major General Aston.[3]


Woodford Valley C.E. Primary Academy serves the villages and surrounding parishes.[18] The site began as a National school in 1872.[19]

There are two pubs: the Bridge Inn at Upper Woodford and the Wheatsheaf Inn at Lower Woodford.

The Monarch's Way long-distance footpath passes through Lower and Middle Woodford.


  1. ^ "Wiltshire Community History – Census". Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 2 August 2015.
  2. ^ a b c d Kelly's directories, ltd (1880). Post office afterw. Kelly's directory of Hampshire, Dorsetshire, Wiltshire (the Isle of Wight, and the Channel Islands) (Public domain ed.). pp. 737–. Retrieved 24 February 2012.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g "Victoria County History: A History of the County of Wiltshire: Volume 6". British History Online. University of London. 1962. Retrieved 22 February 2012.
  4. ^ Mills, Anthony David (6 November 2003). Oxford dictionary of British place names. Oxford University Press. pp. 746–. ISBN 978-0-19-852758-9. Retrieved 24 February 2012.
  5. ^ Urban, Sylvanus (1862). The Gentleman's Magazine or, Monthly Intelligencer for the year (Public domain ed.). Cave. pp. 168–. Retrieved 24 February 2012.
  6. ^ Hamilton, Adam (1904). The chronicle of the English Augustinian canonesses regular of the Lateran, at St. Monica's in Louvain (now at St. Augustine's priory, Newton Abbot, Devon) 1548–1644 (Public domain ed.). Sands & co. pp. 2–. Retrieved 24 February 2012.
  7. ^ Clarke, Benjamin (1852). The British gazetteer, political, commercial, ecclesiastical, and historical: showing the distances of each place from London and Derby—gentlemen's seats—populations ... &c. Illustrated by a full set of county maps, with all the railways accurately laid down ... (Public domain ed.). Published (for the proprietors) by H.G. Collins. pp. 1012–. Retrieved 24 February 2012.
  8. ^ a b Murray, John (1869). Handbook for travellers in Wiltshire, Dorsetshire and Somersetshire (Public domain ed.). J. Murray. pp. 77–. Retrieved 24 February 2012.
  9. ^ Ratcliffe, Derek (11 August 2011). A Nature Conservation Review: Volume 1: The Selection of Biological Sites of National Importance to Nature Conservation in Britain. Cambridge University Press. pp. 193–. ISBN 978-0-521-20329-6. Retrieved 24 February 2012.
  10. ^ Historic England. "Heale House, Woodford (1183383)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 8 August 2015.
  11. ^ House & garden. Condé Nast Publications. 1931. p. 73. Retrieved 22 February 2012.
  12. ^ Country life. Country Life, Ltd. 2005. p. 53. Retrieved 22 February 2012.
  13. ^ Service, Alastair (1 February 1977). Edwardian architecture: a handbook to building design in Britain 1890–1914. Oxford University Press. p. 199. Retrieved 22 February 2012.
  14. ^ Historic England. "Church of All Saints, Middle Woodford (1197978)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 8 August 2015.
  15. ^ Kite, Edward (1860). Monumental brasses of Wiltshire: a series of examples ... ranging from the 13th to the 17th centuries; accompanied with notices descriptive of ancient costume & ... illustrative of the history of the country during this period (Public domain ed.). Henry. pp. 74–. Retrieved 24 February 2012.
  16. ^ A list displayed in the church confirms. See: Photo - list of Prebends and Photo - detail confirming Clement's inclusion
  17. ^ Historic England. "Manor House, Lower Woodford (1130985)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 8 August 2015.
  18. ^ "Woodford Valley C.E. Primary Academy". Retrieved 8 August 2015.
  19. ^ "Woodford Valley Church of England (VA) Primary School". Wiltshire Community History. Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 8 August 2015.

External linksEdit