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Hambleden, Buckinghamshire

Historical Description

Hambleden, a village and a parish in Buckinghamshire. The village stands near the river Thames, 2 miles from the boundary with Oxfordshire, and 3½ NNE from Henley-on-Thames station on the G.W. R.; was once a market-town, and has a post, money order, and telegraph office. The parish comprises 6598 acres; population of the civil parish, 1557; of the ecclesiastical, 1507. The manor belonged to Earl Algar; passed to the Clares, the Badlesmeres, the Scropes, and the Claytons, and belongs now to the Murrays. The present manor house was built in 1604 by the Earl of Sunderland, and gave refuge in 1646 to Charles L, on his way to St Albans. There are several fine mansions, among which may be mentioned Greenlands, Parmoor House, Bacres, and Yewden Manor. The living is a rectory in the diocese of Oxford; gross yearly value, £880 with residence. The church is ancient and cruciform; seems to have had originally a Norman central tower; has now a western tower of 1721; includes portions of Early Decorated and Later English; was repaired in 1859, and contains a Norman font, some curious brasses of the Sheepwash family, and a fine alabaster monument of Sir Cope d'Oyley. The vicarage of Lane End is a separate benefice. Skirmett is a hamlet 2 miles to the N, where there is a small church, erected in 1886. Other adjacent hamlets are Frieth, where there is a church. Mile End, Parmoor, Pheasant Hill, where there is a Congregational chapel, and Rockwell End. St Thomas Cantilupe was a native, and the second Lord Sandes was buried in the church.

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 CountyBuckinghamshire 
Ecclesiastical parishHambleden St. Mary 
Poor Law unionHenley 

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

Church Records

The parish register dates from the year 1566.


Church of England

The Virgin Mary (parish church)

The parish church of the Virgin Mary is a cruciform structure of flint and stone, in the Decorated style, but much altered and modernised, consisting of chancel, nave, transepts, south porch and an embattled western tower, built in 1721, with four turrets and vanes, containing a clock and 6 bells: the font and a door in the north transept are Norman: the stained east window is a memorial to Anna Susanna Nixon, and was erected by her daughter Augusta Eliza Scott-Murray, of The Manor House; there are three other stained windows in the chancel, as well as piscina and sedilia: in the north transept is a monument of alabaster to Sir Cope D'Oyley kt. D.L. of Chiselhampton, Oxon, and justice of Oyer and Terminer, who died 4th Aug. 1633, and to Martha (Quaries) his wife, who died in 1618, with kneeling effigies of both and of five sons and five daughters; there is also a marble monument to John Greene esq, lord of the manor of Ewdon, alias Greeneland, dated 1687: there are three stained windows in the north transept, and in the south transept a memorial window to Augusta Eliza Scott-Murray, erected by her daughter, Augusta Eliza Anna Murray and one to Rear-Admiral William Codrington C.B. d. 1888; two others erected in the nave in 1899 are a memorial to the Rt. Hon. W. H. Smith M.P. d. 6 Oct. 1891; one in the tower is to the Rev. Canon W. H. Ridley M.A. rector here 1840-82; there is a marble monument to Edward Marjoribanks, of Greenelands, dated 1868; in the nave are several monuments and fragments of brasses; and at the west end, under the tower, are other fragments of brasses and a large carved oak chest, said to have been formed from Cardinal Wolsey's bedstead: here also is a canopied monument of freestone, supported by two fluted pillars, to Raffe Scrope esq. cousin unto Henry, Lord Scrope, of Bolton, dated 1572: in 1883 the tower was raised 10 feet, refaced with flint, and stone butbresses added, the bells being also rehung: the church itself had been previously restored in 1858-9: the lady chapel was built out of a portion of the south-east transept known as the Sheepfold in 1914, in memory of the Rt. Hon. W. H. Smith M.P. and Emily Viscountess Hambleden, his widow, by their family: in 1925 the sanctuary was restepped and repaved with York and Portland stone by the 2nd Viscount Hambleden in memory of his father (Rt. Hon. W. H. Smith M.P.). and in 1930 the choir was paved, oak choir stalls and organ screen erected in memory of William Frederick, and Viscount Hambleden, by his family and friends: there are 500 sittings: in the churchyard is a mausoleum to members of the Kenrick and Clayton families and a marble memorial to the Rev. Canon William Henry Ridley M.A. rector 1840-82: a new graveyard was opened in 1889, an acre of land having been presented for the purpose by the Rt. Hon. W. H. Smith M.P. to whose memory the lych gate at the entrance was erected in 1893 by the inhabitants of Hambleden and Remenham, and to whom there is also a granite cross.

Civil Registration

Hambleden was in Wycombe Registration District from 1837 to 1845, Henley Registration District from 1845 to 1932, and Wycombe Registration District from 1932 to 1974

Directories & Gazetteers

We have transcribed the entry for Hambleden from the following:

Land and Property

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


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

Newspapers and Periodicals

The British Newspaper Archive have fully searchable digitised copies of the following Buckinghamshire papers online:

Visitations Heraldic

A full transcript of the Visitation of Buckinghamshire, 1634 is online

RegionSouth East
Postal districtRG9
Post TownHenley-On-Thames