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Thorncombe, Dorset

Historical Description

Thorncombe, a village and a parish in Dorsetshire. The village stands 3 miles ESE of Chard Road station on the L. & S.W.R., and 5½ NE of Axminster. It has a post and money order office under Chard; telegraph office, Chard Road railway station. The parish includes Ford Abbey, and comprises 5416 acres; population of the civil parish, 941; of the ecclesiastical, 931. Sadborow House is the seat of the Bragge family. The living is a vicarage in the diocese of Salisbury; net value, £360 with residence. The church was built in 1867, and is a handsome building of stone in the Perpendicular style. There are a Plymouth Brethren chapel and a village Jubilee hall.

Transcribed from The Comprehensive Gazetteer of England & Wales, 1894-5


The following is a list of the administrative units in which this place was either wholly or partly included.

Ancient CountyDorsetshire 
DioceseBristol1542 - 1836
DioceseSalisbury1836 -
Ecclesiastical parishThorncombe St. Mary 
Poor Law unionBeaminster1896 -
Registration districtBeaminster 
Registration sub-districtNetherbury 

Any dates in this table should be used as a guide only.

Church Records

The parish register dates from the year 1540. The original register books are now deposited with the Dorset Archives Service, but have been digitised by and made available on their site (subscription required).

The Phillimore transcript of Marriages at Thorncombe, 1552-1812 is online.


Church of England

St. Mary (parish church)

The parish church of St. Mary, built in 1867, at a cost of about £4,000, is a fine stone building in the Perpendicular style, embattled throughout, and consists of chancel, nave of four bays, aisles, south transept and a western tower, containing 5 bells: the south transept was built at the sole expense of the late Mrs. Bertram Evans, of Forde Abbey: there is a monument to Sir Thomas Brooke Knt. d. April 10, 1419, and three memorial windows to the Rev. Charles Egerton and Mary, his wife, and John, their son; the stained east window, placed in 1893, is a memorial to Col. Bragge, Margaret, his wife, and Adela, their daughter: there are 400 sittings.

Civil Registration

For general information about Civil Registration (births, marriages and deaths) see the Civil Registration page.

Thorncombe was in Axminster Registration District from 1844 to 1896, Beaminster Registration District from 1896 to 1937, and Bridport Registration District from 1937 to 1974

Directories & Gazetteers

We have transcribed the entry for Thorncombe from the following:

Land and Property

The Return of Owners of Land in 1873 for Dorset is available to browse.


Online maps of Thorncombe are available from a number of sites:

Newspapers and Periodicals

The British Newspaper Archive have fully searchable digitised copies of the Dorset County Chronicle and the Sherborne Mercury online.

Villages, Hamlets, &c

Forde Abbey

Visitations Heraldic

The Visitation of Dorset, 1623 is available on the Heraldry page.

DistrictWest Dorset
RegionSouth West
Postal districtTA20
Post TownChard