Hurst, a parish in Berks, consisting of portions of the liberties of Broad Hinton and Whistley-in-Hurst. Hurst church is about 2 miles S from Twyford station on the G.W.R., and 6 E from Reading. Population of the ecclesiastical parish, 1333. TWYFORD is noticed separately. Post, money order, and telegraph office, Twyford (R.S.O.) The living is a vicarage in the diocese of Oxford; net yearly value, £298 with residence. Patron, the Bishop of Oxford. The church is a building of stone in the Transitional and later styles, and contains an elaborately carved screen, a carved oak pulpit, two brasses of the 16th and 17th centuries, and a splendid monument to the widow of Sir Henry Saville of the 17th century. BEARWOOD is a separate ecclesiastical parish, and is noticed under that heading. The charities, which are administered under a scheme of the Charity Commissioners, amount to about £258 a year.
The following is a list of the administrative units in which this place was either wholly or partly included.
|Ecclesiastical parish||Hurst St. Nicholas|
|Poor Law union||Wokingham|
Any dates in this table should be used as a guide only.
The register dates from the year 1583.
Church of England
St. Nicholas (parish church)
The church of St. Nicholas is a building of stone in the Transitional and later styles, consisting of chancel, with south aisle (added in 1876), nave, south porch, aisles and an embattled western tower, rebuilt in 1612, and containing a clock and 8 bells: the chancel is separated from the nave and aisle by a screen of elaborately carved oak, surmounted by the Royal arms and Prince of Wales's plume, richly gilt; five large pillars with arches of various dates, from the 12th century downwards, form the arcade to the north aisle, and three arches in the Middle-Pointed style separate the south aisle from the nave; the pulpit is of carved oak in the Jacobean style, and there is a splendid marble monument, of the 17th century, to Lady Margaret, widow of Sir Henry Savile kt. provost of Eton and founder of the Savilian professorships of astronomy and geometry at Oxford; it has six marble figures in the attitude of prayer, under a canopy with drapery, supported on each side by an angel, the whole of exquisite workmanship: there is also a brass to Richard Waude, "aulae proquestor" to Henry VIII., Edward VI. and Queens Mary and Elizabeth, ob. 1574; his wife, Colubra, and 17 children, with effigies and 14 verses; and another brass to Alice, eldest daughter of Richard Ward esq. "cooferer" to Queen Elizabeth, and wife of Thomas Harrison esq. ob. c. 1600; this brass has her effigy in a bed, she having died in childbed: in 1876 the nave was restored at the expense of Miss Palmer, of Sonning, at a cost of £4,000; in 1903 the chancel was redecorated, and in 1908 the north chapel was furnished and new vestry added at a cost of £315: in 1909 a new organ was presented by T. R. Harman esq. of Sindlesham: in the south aisle is a memorial window presented by the family of the late T. R. Harman esq. of Sindlesham: the stained east window is a memorial to the Rev. Archibald Allen Cameron M.A. vicar 1832-80; in 1893 a memorial window was erected to Mrs. Cameron, and in September, 1905, another to Thomas Harrison and Ann Caroline, his wife: there are 400 sittings. The churchyard was extended in 1903.
Baptist Chapel, Whistley Green
There is a Baptist chapel at Whistley Green, with sittings for 120 persons.
For general information about Civil Registration (births, marriages and deaths) see the Civil Registration page.
Hurst St. Nicholas was in Wokingham Registration District from 1894 to 1974
Directories & Gazetteers
We have transcribed the entry for Hurst from the following:
- Samuel Lewis' A Topographical Dictionary of England, by Samuel Lewis, seventh edition, published 1858. (Hurst (St. Nicholas))
Land and Property
The Return of Owners of Land in 1873 for Berkshire is available to browse.
Online maps of Hurst are available from a number of sites:
- Bing (Current Ordnance Survey maps).
- Google Streetview.
- National Library of Scotland. (Old maps)
- old-maps.co.uk (Old Ordnance Survey maps to buy).
- Streetmap.co.uk (Current Ordnance Survey maps).
- A Vision of Britain through Time. (Old maps)
Newspapers and Periodicals
The British Newspaper Archive have fully searchable digitised copies of the following Berkshire papers online:
Villages, Hamlets, &cBroad Hinton
The Visitations of Berkshire 1532, 1566, and 1665-6 is available online.