Place:Alfold, Surrey, England

Alt namesAlfold Crosswayssource: hamlet in parish
Monkenhooksource: manor in parish
Markwicksource: manor in parish
Sydneysource: manor in parish
Wildwoodsource: manor in parish
Coordinates51.096°N 0.519°W
Located inSurrey, England
Also located inWest Sussex, England     (1865 - )
See alsoArundel Rape, Sussex, Englandrape in which it was located
Bury Hundred, Sussex, Englandhundred in which it was located
Blackheath Hundred, Surrey, Englandancient county division in which it was located
Hambledon Rural, Surrey, Englandrural district in which it was located 1894-1974
Waverley District, Surrey, Englanddistrict municipality covering the area since 1974
source: Family History Library Catalog

the text in this section is based on an article in Wikipedia

Alfold is a village and civil parish in Surrey, England on the West Sussex border. In the times of rapes and hundreds it was in the Bury Hundred of Arundel Rape in Sussex. Alfold is a dispersed or polyfocal village in the Green Belt, which is buffered from all other settlements. The Greensand Way runs north of the village along the Greensand Ridge and two named localities exist to the north and south of the historic village centre which features pubs, a set of stocks and a whipping post.

Alfold Crossways here has a country park, recreational ground and a garden centre whereas Alfold's centre has a village store and the Anglican parish church. The population was 1,059 in the 2011 UK census. It has an area of 15.1 km2 (5.8 sq mi).


Alfold, also recorded as Aldfold or Awfold, meant the "old fold" or clearing enclosure for cattle, which is apt as it was in a much-wooded area of The Weald (meaning forest in Old and Middle English) prior to being cleared for farming.

Early glass making, evidence of which can be seen in Sidney Wood, appears to provide the oldest trace of land use in the village. The glass industry in Alfold ended around 1615 when using charcoal was banned in glass production.

Alfold is not mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1086. This is probably because it appears to have been an unrecorded, southern outpost in the multi-village estate of Bramley since pre-conquest times. The earliest mention of Alfold, in the 13th century, records that it was attached to Shalford Manor. A charter of William Longespee (c. 1212 – 1250), son of the Earl of Salisbury, records that the advowson, with the Manor of Shalford, is given to John, son of Geoffrey Earl of Essex, who died in 1256.

Four manors existed, namely Wildwood now represented by Great and Little Wildwood Farms and Wildwood Copse and Moat, was formerly possessed by the lords of Albury and Stoke d'Abernon, the d'Abernons and their successors. In the 13th century they had land in Alfold and in a deed of 1313 John D'Abernon's wood called le Wylwode is mentioned. Markwick and Monkenhook over their history have been held by Waverley Abbey, Viscount Montagu (from 1554) and the Earl of Onslow (from 1674); and Sydney, alias Hedgecourt or Rickhurst (Rykhurst), lies partly in Dunsfold and held by the Sydney (then Dorrington) family.

Alfold Park, formerly with a moat (as did Wildwood Farm), belonged to the manor of Shalford and contained 300 acres (120 ha); however it lost its park before John Speed's map was made in the reign of James I.

After the invention of gunpowder, charcoal was extensively burnt in the parish for gunpowder works in Dunsfold, Cranleigh, and in Sussex.

Of the parish's 2,726 acres (1,103 ha) only 72 acres (29 ha) in 1848 were common or waste, and

"abounded with oak, ash, and elm: in parts there is a bed of stone, which is used for repairing roads, but is not hard enough for building. The Arun and Wey Junction canal passes through. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £6. 11. 2. [land tax liability], and in the gift of the Sparkes family: the tithes have been commuted for £355, and the glebe comprises 14 acres." [Samuel Lewis, ed. (1848). "Aldingham – Alfreton". A Topographical Dictionary of England.)

A Baptist chapel was erected in 1883, and an elementary school in 1876.

Significant other homes mentioned in 1911 were Sydney Manor and Sachel Court; Sachel Court was owned by Thomas Smith Wharrie, an engineer in Scotland and director of British Mutual Banking Company Ltd.

The following description from John Marius Wilson's Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales of 1870-72 is provided by the website A Vision of Britain Through Time (University of Portsmouth Department of Geography).

ALFOLD, Aldfold, or Awfold, a parish in the [registration] district of Hambledon, and counties of Surrey and Sussex; on the Wey and Arundel canal, 6½ miles SE of Witley [railway] station, and 8 SSE of Godalming. It has a post office under Horsham. Acres: 2,883. Real property: £1,970. Population: 535. Houses: 96.
"Much of the surface is wood land; and little yields any grain but oats. Several French refugees from the massacre on St. Bartholomew's day settled here, and erected a glass manufactory. The living is a rectory in the diocese of Winchester. Value: £205. Patron: the Rev. L. W. Elliott. The church is Norman.

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Administrative boundaries of the county of Surrey (Surrey History Centre. The centre has a website with a number of useful indexes--titheholders in various parishes, deaths at the county gaol, etc.)

Registration Districts

  • Registration Districts in Surrey from their introduction in 1837 to the present. By drilling down through the links you can follow any parish through the registration districts to which it was attached.

GENUKI provisions

The website GENUKI provides a very comprehensive list of reference sources for the County of Surrey. It includes:

  • Archives and Libraries
  • Church record availability for both Surrey and the former Surrey part of Greater London
  • 19th century descriptions of the ecclesiastical parishes
  • Lists of cemeteries
  • Local family history societies
  • A list of historic maps online


  • The Victoria History of the County of Surrey is a series of three volumes available online through British History Online. The volumes were written over the past hundred or so years by a number of authors and cover various sections of Surrey. A list of the volumes and what each contains can be found under the source Victoria History of the County of Surrey. Both volumes 3 and 4 contain areas which are part of Greater London and parts of modern Surrey.


  • The National Library of Scotland has a website which provides maps taken from the Ordnance Survey England & Wales One-Inch to the Mile series of 1892-1908 as well as equivalent maps for Scotland itself. The immediate presentation is a "help" screen and a place selection screen prompting the entry of a location down to town, village or parish level. These screens can be removed by a click of the "X". The map is very clear and shows parish and county boundaries and many large buildings and estates that existed at the turn of the 20th century. Magnification can be adjusted and an "overlay feature" allows inspection of the area today along with that of 1900. The specific map from the series can be viewed as a whole ("View this map") and this allows the inspection of the map legend (found in the left hand bottom corner. Becoming familiar with the various facilities of these maps is well worth the trouble.
This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original content was at Alfold. 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.