Welcome to South Warnborough

Village History

The name derives from "Weargebuman", evidently the Saxon name for Whitewater and meaning "felon stream", i.e. "the stream where felons are drowned.


The Domesday Book

South Warnborough, then known as Wergeborne, was included in the Domesday Book. It was translated for the Victoria County History of Hampshire as follows:

In Odingetone (Hoddington) Hundret: 

The same Hugh holds Wergeborne and Guy (de Craon holds it) of him with his daughter. Bondi held it of King Edward. It was then assessed at 11 hides; now at 6 hides. There is land for 12 ploughs. In demesne are 2 ploughs and (there are) 15 villeins and 16 bordars with 6 ploughs. There are a church and 3 serfs, and a mill worth ten shillings, and 12 acres (49,000 m2) of meadow. T.R.E. (in the time of King Edward) it was worth 12 pounds, and afterwards 6 pounds; and now 10 pounds [1] 

Church, Manor, Plough

In the book Church, Manor, Plough - Volume 1 of the History of South Warnborough written by John Simpson in 1946, he details a statement made on 28 September 1822 by William Cobbett who was passing through the parish on one of his 'Rural Rides' from Odiham to Winchester

"We have come over roads and lanes of flint and chalk. The weather being dry again, the ground under you, as solid as iron, makes a great rattling with the horses feet. The country where the soil is stiff loam upon chalk, is never bad for corn. Not rich, but never poor. There is at no time anything deserving to be called dirt in the roads. The buildings last a long time, from the absence of fogs and also the absence of humidity in the ground. The absence of dirt makes the people habitually cleanly; and all along through this country the people appear in general to be very neat. It is a country for sheep, which are always good and sound..." [1] 

St. Andrews

St. Andrews was given by William the Conqueror to Hugh Fitzbaldric. St. Andrew's church dates from the early 12th century. Its walls are made of flint rubble, except for the West wall of the nave and the 19th century South aisle. Its roofs are now tiled, though in the Middle Ages they may well have been thatched. The unusual wooden bell turret at the West end is late 14th century. Inside, the roofs of the nave and chancel are of the trussed-rafter type, used in mediaeval and late mediaeval times. In its original form the church had no South aisle, which was added by the Victorian architect Street about 1870. There were, however, nave altars on either side of the chancel steps as well as the main altar at the East end.

The main doorway on the North side, with its interesting design of lozenges broken at an angle, and the West end of the nave, were built when Alan de Craon was lord of the manor. The rest of the nave and the chancel appear to have been rebuilt in the first half of the 13th century, the chancel keeping the width and perhaps some of the wall of its 12th century predecessor. Its east window is made up of three closely set stepped lancets under an enclosing arch. The single lancet windows of the nave are early 14th century, as are the windows on the south walls of the church. The large window to the left of the main altar is 16th century, though the stained glass is of a later date. One of the outstanding features of the church is the 15th century rood screen, a rare survival and now in its original position though there was a time when it was used under the belfry where it formed a gallery. Its supporting arches are of a later date. St. Andrew's is rich in monuments and heraldry, particularly of the Whyte family. To the left of the main altar there is a large altar tomb, probably not in its original position, bearing the Whyte arms - the three popinjays - on shields set on a four-leafed design (quatrefoils).

Although the South aisle was built in the 19th century, there is to the right of its altar an early 12th century volute capital and shaft possibly of the same date as the nave walls. The chief interest of the South aisle is in the 16th century heraldic glass. On the window behind the altar are represented the three feathers of Wales twice and the Tudor Rose once, probably for Prince Arthur, the elder brother of Henry VIII, and also the emblems of Katherine of Aragon who stayed at Dogmersfield when she first arrived in England to marry Arthur.

In the window to the right there are four panels. The top left hand is dated 1599 and shows the Whyte popinjays; the other three shields are encircled by garters and are from the first half of the 16th century; they include the quartered shield of Thomas Wriothesley, first earl of Southampton who had served with Sir Thomas Whyte on a Commission for disposing of Church plate at the Reformation; his grandson, the 3rd Earl, was the patron of the Elizabethan poets, and in particular of Shakespeare.


The Manor

At the Norman Conquest, William the Conqueror granted the manor of Wergeborne (South Warnborough) to one of his great Norman barons, Hugh Fitzbaldric. Hugh gave the manor and the living of St. Andrew's Church which went with it, to his daughter on her marriage to Guy de Craon. Their son Alan, grandson Maurice and great-grandson Guy continued as lords of the manor but the living of St Andrew's, with land and woods, was granted by Alan to Freiston Priory, a sub-cell of the renowned Crowland Abbey in Lincolnshire, in which county the de Craons also had lands.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

South Warnborough Parish Council © 2018