kids encyclopedia robot

Bishopstone, Salisbury facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
Quick facts for kids
Across the Meadow - - 302190.jpg
Houses under Netton Down, Bishopstone
Bishopstone is located in Wiltshire
Population 684 (in 2011)
OS grid reference SU069257
Civil parish
  • Bishopstone
Unitary authority
  • Wiltshire
Ceremonial county
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town Salisbury
Postcode district SP5
Dialling code 01722
Police Wiltshire
Fire Wiltshire
Ambulance Great Western
EU Parliament South West England
UK Parliament
  • Salisbury
Website Village
List of places
51°01′52″N 1°54′11″W / 51.031°N 1.903°W / 51.031; -1.903

Bishopstone is a village and civil parish in Wiltshire, England, in the Ebble valley about 5.5 miles (9 km) south-west of Salisbury. The parish is on the county boundary with Hampshire and includes the small village of Croucheston and the hamlet of The Pitts (now Pitts Road).


The area has evidence of prehistoric settlement, such as a bowl barrow near Croucheston Down Farm. Grim's Ditch, a prehistoric earthwork, forms the southern boundary of the parish. A Roman road from Old Sarum to Dorchester crosses the parish.

It is not known when Bishopstone was first inhabited or what it was called but fragmentary records from Saxon times indicate that the whole Chalke Valley area was thriving. It is surmised that the village was originally known as Eblesborne, but by 1166 it had been acquired by the See of Winchester and was known as Bissopeston. It is also surmised that Eblesborne meant that the land and the burna (river) was once owned by a man called Ebbel.

The village of Eblesborne is mentioned by historian Michael Wood in his book Domesday, a Search for the Roots of England because in 902 the Bishop of Winchester leased an estate in 'Ebbesbourne' to Beornwulf at a rent of 45/- a year. In the book Ebbesbourne Wake through the Ages Peter Meers states that this reference was about Bishopstone, not Ebbesborne Wake.

The Domesday Book in 1086 divided the Chalke Valley into eight manors, Chelke (Chalke - Broad Chalke and Bowerchalke), Eblesborne (Ebbesbourne Wake), Fifehide (Fifield Bavant), Cumbe (Coombe Bissett), Humitone (Homington), Odestoche (Odstock), Stradford (Stratford Tony and Bishopstone) and Trow (circa Alvediston and Tollard Royal).

The parish contains six ancient villages, possibly since Saxon times. To the north of the river these were Bishopstone, Netton and Flamston; to the south, Throope, Faulston and Croucheston. Names of former settlements survive in Netton Farmhouse (1637), Throope Manor (18th century), and Faulston House (17th century). The roadside settlement known as The Pitts developed in the 19th century.

Religious sites

The parish church of St John the Baptist is Grade I listed. Evidence survives of a 12th-century building, which was rebuilt as a cruciform church in the 13th century. The tower and two-storey porch were added in the 15th century and restoration was carried out in the 19th. There are several monuments outside. By the south transept, a small stone cloister of two vaulted bays shelters a decorated tomb chest, perhaps that of the founder of the church. In the north transept is another richly decorated tomb recess, with stone coffin-lids, and in the south transept a mid-19th-century Gothic monument to a former rector by A. W. Pugin. At one time, above this was a window designed by Pugin and executed by William Wailes; this has since been replaced by clear glass.

A Primitive Methodist chapel was opened in 1833 at Croucheston and continued in use until 1978.


There is no school in the parish. A school was built at The Pitts in 1843 and educated children of all ages until 1932 when it became a junior school, which closed in 1977 owing to falling pupil numbers.

Bishopstone has a village hall and a pub, the White Hart. The Three Horseshoes, an inn housed in an 18th-century building, closed in 2002.

Settlements and notable buildings

Bishopstone House - - 744469
Rear of Bishopstone House

The site of Bishopstone village has only the church, the former rectory, Manor Farm and a few houses; there are signs of a deserted medieval village east of the church. The rectory, now called Bishopstone House, was built in yellow brick around 1820 to designs of Bath architect John Lowder; it was sold into private use in the 1950s. Manor Farm was built in the early 19th century for the Wilton estate, the house in red brick and the later outbuildings in characteristic banded brick and flint.

Throope has always been a small settlement. The main dwelling is Throope Manor, built in the early 18th century for the Button family and extended in 1935 for Lord Essex. It may incorporate a 17th-century house, and contains panelling from that century.

Netton developed as a linear village along what is now Pitts Lane and Netton Street. Netton Old Farmhouse, two storeys in chequered flint and limestone under a thatched roof, has a 1637 date tablet. To the west, the former Three Horseshoes Inn is from the 18th century. Also in this area is the parish hall, built in 1885 and extended in 1921. The White Hart pub, beside the road from Coombe Bissett to Broad Chalke, was a public house in 1792 but the present building is from the 19th century.

Flamston was another linear village. A farm and two thatched cottages remain on Flamston Street.

Croucheston House is a farmhouse from the late 18th century, in banded brick and flint. Chapel Lane has the former Methodist chapel and Sudbury House, from the late 17th century in brick and thatch, with a contrasting c.1800 addition in flint and brick. Further south, 'Old Rafters' is a 16th-century timber-framed cottage, again brick, flint and thatch, altered in later centuries. Next to the river is a corn mill which was in use until the 1990s and may be on the site of the mill recorded in the 13th century.

Faulston House and Dovecote
Faulston House and dovecote

At Faulston, farmsteads were abandoned in the Middle Ages to leave only the manor house and its farm. The present Faulstone House is a rebuilding of c.1800 in dressed limestone and a tiled roof. A tall dovecote from the early 17th century, in flint with dressed limestone bands under a conical tiled roof, is Grade II* listed; it may have been part of the fortifications of the earlier house. Farm buildings across the road were built in the mid-19th century in brick and flint bands for the Wilton estate. Faulston had a corn mill with a house attached, downstream from the settlement and known as Lower Mill, which was in use until the 1940s.

Images for kids

kids search engine
Bishopstone, Salisbury Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.