Hurley is a small village and large, rural civil parish in Berkshire, England. Its riverside is agricultural except for Hurley Priory as are the outskirts of the village. The adjoining inn is believed to date to 1135 AD.
Hurley was part of the Beynhurst Hundred and the Cookham Poor Law Union. The parish was located in the Cookham Rural District 1894-1974, and since that date in the Royal Burgh of Windsor and Maidenhead (both the administrative district and the unitary authority).
Hurley itself is a linear development perpendicular to and adjoining the Upper Thames NW of Maidenhead and ENE of Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire. The parish includes the considerable hamlets of Cockpole Green, Warren Row, Knowl Hill, Burchett's Green and part of Littlewick Green.
Ashley Hill Forest, almost south of the village is close to and almost equidistant between Warren Row, Knowl Hill and Burchett's Green and is the largest woodland. Other than this the parish is mainly agricultural however many farms have spinneys of woodland adjoining.
Online Historical References
Nineteenth Century Local Administration
English Jurisdictions is a webpage provided by FamilySearch which analyses every ecclesiastical parish in England at the year 1851. It provides, with the aid of outline maps, the date at which parish records and bishops transcripts begin, non-conformist denominations with a chapel within the parish, the names of the jurisdictions in charge: county, civil registration district, probate court, diocese, rural deanery, poor law union, hundred, church province; and links to FamilySearch historical records, FamilySearch Catalog and the FamilySearch Wiki. Two limitations: only England, and at the year 1851.
During the 19th century two bodies, the Poor Law Union and the Sanitary District, had responsibility for governmental functions at a level immediately above that covered by the civil parish. In 1894 these were replace by Rural and Urban Districts. These were elected bodies, responsible for setting local property assessments and taxes as well as for carrying out their specified duties. Thses districts continued in operation until 1974. Urban districts for larger municipalities were called "Municipal Boroughs" and had additional powers and obligations.
Poor Law Unions, established nationally in 1834, combined parishes together for the purpose of providing relief for the needy who had no family support. This led to the building of '"union poorhouses" or "workhouses" funded by all the parishes in the union. The geographical boundaries established for the individual Poor Law Unions were employed again when Registration Districts were formed three years later. In 1875 Sanitary Districts were formed to provide services such as clean water supply, sewage systems, street cleaning, and the clearance of slum housing. These also tended to follow the same geographical boundaries, although there were local alterations caused by changes in population distribution.