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Castle Combe, Wiltshire

Historical Description

Castle-Combe, a village and a parish in Wilts. The village stands near Akeman Street, 5½ miles WNW of Chippenham station on the G.W.R. It has a post office under Chippenham; money order and telegraph office, Yatton Keynell. It was once a place of some note, and had a weekly market, and it still has a fair for cattle, sheep, and horses on 4 May. An ancient market-cross is in it; a number of gable-fronted old houses line its streets, and an old dowry-house and an old manor-house stand, the one at the end of its principal street, the other in the near neighbourhood. A Saxon fort, or even a Roman camp, is supposed to have crowned an adjacent hill, and a great castle of the Dunstanvilles was built there about the year 1200, and dismantled before the close of the 14th century. The manor passed from the Dunstanvilles to the Badlesmeres and others, and belonged for about 500 years to the Scropes. The present mansion occupies a romantic site on the Box brook, deeply embosomed among steep and wooded slopes. Two notable occupants of the manor were Lord Chancellor Scrope, of the time of Richard II., and William Scrope, author of "Days of Deer Stalking." Acreage of the parish, 1555; population, 459. The living is a rectory in the diocese of Gloucester and Bristol; net value, £300. Most of the church is Early Perpendicular. It consists of nave, chancel, and two aisles, with a square tower; was restored in 1851 at a cost of £3000, and contains an octagonal font and a cenotaph of the Scropes, and some fine stained glass windows. The tower, which is very fine for a village church, was commenced in 1434. There are Congregational and Baptist chapels.

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 CountyWiltshire 
Ecclesiastical parishCastle-Combe St. Andrew 
Poor Law unionChippenham 

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

Church Records

The parish register dates from the year 1653.

Findmypast, in association with the Wiltshire Record Office, have the following parish records online for Castle Combe:

1602-1892 1846-18481846-1892


Church of England

St. Andrew (parish church)

The church of St. Andrew is a building of stone in the Early English and Perpendicular styles, consisting of chancel with clerestoried aisles and nave of three bays, aisles, south porch and an embattled western tower, with pinnacles, 85 feet in height, and containing 2 bells and a clock: the lower stage of the tower forms the principal entrance: the body of the church was built temp, Richard II. 1377 to 1399, and the tower in the first half of the 15th century: the stained west window was the gift of the Rev. R. C. Christie LL.B. rector 1851-88; under the belfry is a stone grained ceiling of very elegant design: the chancel arch is decorated with the figures of saints upon pedestals under canopies: in the gable is a stained rose window, and the east window, consisting of four Early English lancets, is also filled with richly stained glass, as well as all the remaining windows, 16 in number; one of these, in the Lady chapel, represents the arms of the lords who successively held the manor: there is an altar-tomb, with a recumbent effigy of one of the De Dunstanvilles, d. 1270, ancestors of the Scrope family: there are sittings for 430 persons.


Congregational Chapel

The Congregational chapel, founded in 1743, will seat 200.

Civil Registration

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

Directories & Gazetteers

We have transcribed the entry for Castle Combe from the following:


Online maps of Castle Combe are available from a number of sites:

Newspapers and Periodicals

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

RegionSouth West
Postal districtSN14
Post TownChippenham