Bremhill

The parish of Bremhill is made up of a collection of smaller parishes in the valleys with the village of Bremhill prominent on a hill. In the smaller parishes are the hamlets of Tytherton Lucas, East Tytherton, Foxham, Charlcutt, Spirthill, Stanley and Bremhill Wick. The village of Bremhill sits on Wick hill, which is made up of corallian limestone, which falls away into the valley of the river Avon. The geology is from the upper oolite and provides excellent loam, brash and clay soils for farming. The line of the old Wiltshire & Berkshire canal runs through the parish from north east to south west.

The history of Bremhill is now being researched and written by the Bremhill Parish History Group, with the intention of producing not only the necessary chapter for the VCH Chippenham volume but also a full, locally published, parish history.


The origin of the name of Bremhill is probably Saxon and refers to a collection of brambles. In 935 Athelston gave Bremhill to Malmesbury Abbey. In the Doomsday survey of 1086 it belonged to the Crown. Two miles south west of Bremhill was the Cistercian monastery of Stanley Abbey founded in 1154. It is also the site of one of the earliest fulling mills recorded in Wiltshire in 1189. After the dissolution of the abbey the estates were held by the Bayntun family of Spye Park.

The vernacular architecture of the parish is mostly made up of rubble or brick buildings, with thatched or tile roofs. Most of the buildings date from the 17th century with good examples of farmhouses. In the 19th century Victorian buildings were built with high pitched roofs, weatherboarding and dormers.

William Bowles, the local poet and 'frightened eccentric', lived in the former vicarage of Bremhill Court, the house has a 15th century core with both 17th and 18th century additions.

The church of St Martins was built c1200 and was restored by the Victorians in 1850.