Place:Great Witley, Worcestershire, England

Watchers
NameGreat Witley
TypeVillage, Parish
Coordinates52.2833°N 2.35°W
Located inWorcestershire, England
Also located inHereford and Worcester, England     (1974 - 1998)
Worcestershire, England     (1998 - )
See alsoDoddingtree (hundred), Worcestershire, Englandhundred of which the parish was a part
Martley Rural, Worcestershire, Englandrural district of which it was part 1894-1974
Malvern Hills District, Hereford and Worcester, Englanddistrict municipality covering the area 1974-1998
Malvern Hills District, Worcestershire, Englanddistrict municipality covering the area from 1998 onward
source: Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names
source: Family History Library Catalog


the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

Great Witley is a village and civil parish (with Hill Hampton), in the Malvern Hills District in the northwest of the county of Worcestershire, England. It is situated around ten miles to the north west of the city of Worcester.

There has been a settlement in the area since before the Norman Conquest.

Great Witley was in the lower division of Doddingtree Hundred.

Following the Poor Law Amendment Act 1834 Great Witley Parish ceased to be responsible for maintaining the poor in its parish. This responsibility was transferred to Martley Poor Law Union.

The village is home to Witley Court, a Jacobean country house extended on a number of occasions throughout its history, but which became derelict after a spectacular fire in 1937. The mansion, formerly one of the finest in the Midlands, is now in the care of English Heritage, who describe it as their number one ruin. They have restored the extensive gardens leaving the impressive skeletal ruin of the building overlooking them in a poignant and thought provoking way.

Nearby is Woodbury Hill commanding extensive views south to the Malvern Hills and over the River Teme valley to the west. On the summit is an Iron Age hillfort. Owain Glyndŵr's army of Welsh and French camped here for eight days in the summer of 1405 facing an army of King Henry IV at Abberley Hill. Skirmishes took place but neither large force initiated full scale battle and the Welsh withdrew under nightfall back to Wales. The location was also used as a meeting place during the English Civil War by Clubmen from the local farms and cottages.

The village also is home to the Grade II listed coaching inn The Hundred House Hotel, once the collection point for agricultural tithes from the districts or 'hundred (division)s' of the local area. In this instance the Doddingtree Hundred.

From 1843 to 1846 Queen Adelaide, the widow of King William IV resided at Witley Court. Whilst there she financed the first village school.

The current (2014) Lord of the Manor of Great Witley is Simon Mason Wall.

end of Wikipedia contribution

From 1894 until 1974 it was a parish in the Martley Rural District. Since 1974 it has been part of the Malvern Hills District, first in the county of Hereford and Worcester, and then, since 1998, in Worcestershire again.

There is a sketchmap of the parishes of Martley Rural District on the rural district page.

Research Tips

  • Ordnance Survey Maps of England and Wales - Revised: Worcestershire illustrates the parish boundaries of Worcestershire when rural districts were still in existence and before the West Midlands came into being. The map publication year is 1931. The map blows up to show all the parishes and many of the small villages and hamlets. Maps in this series are now downloadable for personal use.
  • British History Online has a collection of local maps from the Ordnance Survey 1883-1893. Rural areas are included, but these may be especially useful for investigation the suburbs of large towns.
  • GENUKI makes a great many suggestions as to other websites with worthwhile information about Worcestershire as well as leading to a collection of 19th century descriptions of each of the ecclesiastical parishes.
  • The Midlands Historical Data project produces searchable facsimile copies of old local history books and directories of interest to genealogists. It specialises in the three counties of Warwickshire, Worcestershire and Staffordshire, working closely with libraries, archives and family history societies in the area. Digital images are made freely available to participating organisations to improve public access. Free search index on its web-site to all its books. In many cases payment will be required to see the extract.
  1. organization charts of the hierarchies of parishes within hundreds, registration districts and rural and urban districts of the 20th century
  2. excerpts from a gazetteer of circa 1870 outlining individual towns and parishes
  3. reviews of population through the time period 1800-1960
  • More local sources can often be found by referring to "What Links Here" in the column on the left.
  • A History of the County of Worcester: Volume 4 edited by William Page and J W Willis-Bund covers the city of Worcester, as well as parishes in the hundreds of Pershore and Doddingtree, in the south and west of the county. These include the towns of Pershore, Great Malvern and Hanley Castle. (Victoria County History - Worcestershire. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1924, and available free online from British History Online)


This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original content was at Great Witley. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with WeRelate, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.