- Where Is Wiltshire?
- Why Is Wiltshire Called Wiltshire?
- What Is Wiltshire Famous For?
- The Cities, Towns, And Villages Of Wiltshire
- Wiltshire History Facebook Groups
- Wiltshire Local History Resources
Where Is Wiltshire?
Wiltshire is in the region of South West England.
Wiltshire is surrounded by the counties of Dorset, Somerset, Hampshire, Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire, and Berkshire. Because it is a landlocked county it doesn’t have access to any coastline. However, the county benefits from a large number of small brooks and streams across the district. The three major rivers are the River Avon (Bristol), the entirely different River Avon (Hampshire), and the River Thames.
The River Thames runs through Wiltshire but the county is over a hundred miles away from London and is not part of England’s capital city.
Why Is Wiltshire Called Wiltshire?
The town of Wilton was founded in Anglo-Saxon times and soon became the biggest community in the area. Scire is an Anglo-Saxon word for district, which today we pronounce as shire. So Wiltshire means the district around Wilton.
What Is Wiltshire Famous For?
The prehistoric ring of stones at Stonehenge, the medieval spire at Salisbury Cathedral and the rolling acres of grassy chalk plateau that form Salisbury Plain are the county’s landmarks.
Wiltshire is also famous for its local food products. Pig farming has been a feature of the district’s life for more than a millennium, with its bacon and ham attracting a good reputation. Some of the pork by-products were put to good use in Wiltshire Lardy Cake.
Today, Wiltshire Loaf Cheese may not be widely known by the general public in other parts of the UK, but it continues to be made in the county for local sale.
The Cities, Towns, And Villages Of Wiltshire
The county of Wiltshire has one city, Salisbury. The city of Bath is in the county of Somerset and is not in Wiltshire.
Most of the county is dotted with small, rural communities, including:
- Abbotstone Ablington Addeston Alcombe Aldbourne Alderbury Alderton All Cannings Allington (near Chippenham) Allington (near Devizes) Allington (near Salisbury) Alton Barnes Alton Priors Alvediston Amesbury Amour Acre Ansty Appledoe Ashgoe Ashlade Ashleigh Ashley Ashton Gifford Ashton Keynes Ashwell Asserton Atworth Aughton Avebury Avon Avoncliff Axford
- Badbury Badbury Wick Bagshot Bapton Barbury Castle Barford St Martin Barrow Street Bathampton Baverstock Baydon Bayfield Beanacre Beardwell Bearfield Beechingstoke Bemerhills Bemerton Bentham Berryfield Berwick Bassett Berwick St James Berwick St John Berwick St Leonard Beversbrook Biddesden Biddestone Bigley Bincknoll Castle Birchanger Birdbush Bisford Bishop Fowley Bishops Cannings Bishopstone near Salisbury Bishopstone near Swindon Bishopstrow Bishops Cannings Blackland Blagdon Hill Blount’s Court Blunsdon St Andrew Bodenham Bonham Boreham Boscombe Bottlesford Bowerchalke Bowerhill Bowood House Box Boyton Bradenstoke Bradford Leigh Bradford on Avon Bratton Braydon Bremhill Bricefield Brickworth Bridmore Brigmerston Brillscote Brimergate Brinkworth Britford Brixton Deverill Broad Blunsdon Broad Chalke Broad Hinton Broad Leaze Broad Town Brogbrook Brokenborough Brokerswood Bromham Brotton Hill Broughton Gifford Brunton Bugley Bugmore Bulbridge Bulford Bulkington Bullenhill Bupton Burbage Burcombe Burderop Burton Bushton Buttermere
- Calne Castle Combe Castle Eaton Castle Hill Chapmanslade Charlton, Brinkworth Charlton, Pewsey Vale Charlton-All-Saints Cherhill Chicklade Chilmark Chilton Foliat Chippenham Chirton Chisbury Chiseldon Chitterne Chittoe Cholderton Christian Malford Chute Cadley Chute Forest Coate Codford Colerne Collingbourne Ducis Collingbourne Kingston Compton Bassett Compton Chamberlayne Coombe (near Donhead St Mary) Coombe (near Enford) Coombe Bissett Corsham Corsley Corston Coulston Covingham Cricklade Croucheston Crudwell
- Dauntsey Dauntsey Lock Devizes Dilton Marsh Dinton Ditteridge Donhead St Andrew Donhead St Mary Downton Durrington Derry Hill Draycot Cerne Draycot Foliat
- East Chisenbury East Everleigh East Grafton East Kennett East Knoyle Easterton Easton (Bishops Cannings) Easton Grey Easton Royal Ebbesbourne Wake Edington Enford Erlestoke Etchilhampton Everleigh
- Figheldean Fifield Fifield Bavant Firsdown Fisherton Delamere Fittleton Fonthill Bishop Fonthill Gifford Ford Fosbury Fovant Foxham Foxley Froxfield Fugglestone St Peter Fyfield Fyfield (Pewsey)
- Gasper Goatacre Great Bedwyn Great Chalfield Great Cheverell Great Durnford Great Hinton Great Somerford Great Wishford Greatfield Greenhill Grittleton Gastard
- Hannington Hannington Wick Haydon Wick Ham Ham Hill Hampton Hamptworth Harnham Hawkstreet Haxton Hayes Knoll Heytesbury Heywood Highworth Hilmarton Hilperton Hindon Hinton Parva Hodson Holt Honeystreet Horningsham Horton Huish Hullavington
- Keevil Kilmington Kington Langley Kington St Michael Knook Knook Castle
- Lacock Lacock Abbey Lake Langley Burrell Larkhill Laverstock Lea Leigh Delamere Liddington Limpley Stoke Little Bedwyn Little Cheverell Little Salisbury Little Somerford Littlecote House Littlecott Littleton Drew Littleworth Lockeridge Longbridge Deverill Longstreet Lover Lower Chute Lower Everleigh Lower Woodford Ludgershall Ludwell Lydeway Lydiard Millicent Lydiard Tregoze Lyneham
- Maddington Maiden Bradley Malmesbury The Manningfords Manton Marden Market Lavington Marlborough Marlborough Downs Marston Marston Meysey Marten Melksham Mere Middle Woodford Milbourne Mile Elm Milton Lilbourne Mildenhall Minety Monkton Farleigh Morgan’s Vale Mountain Bower
- Neston Nettleton Netherstreet Netheravon New Town New Zealand Nine Elms Nomansland North Bradley North Tidworth North Wraxall Norton Bavant Notton Nunton
- Oare Odstock Ogbourne St George Ogbourne St Andrew Ogbourne Maizey Old Dilton Old Sarum Old Wardour Castle Oxenwood Oaksey
- Patney Perham Down Pertwood Pewsey Pitton Potterne Poulshot Poulton Purton Purton Stoke
- Ramsbury Redlynch Restrop Ridge Rivar Rockley Rollestone Roundway Royal Wootton Bassett Rowde Rushall
- St. Edith’s Marsh Salisbury Sandridge Sandy Lane Scratchbury Camp Seagry Heath Sedgehill Seend Sells Green Semley Sevenhampton Sevington Shalbourne Shaw Sherrington Sherston Shrewton Slaughterford Snap Sopworth South Marston South Newton Stanton St Bernard Stanton St Quintin Stapleford Startley Steeple Ashton Steeple Langford Stert Stitchcombe Stockley Stockton Stourton Stratford-sub-Castle Stratford Tony Stype Sutton Benger Sutton Mandeville Sutton Veny Swallowcliffe Swanborough Swindon
- Teffont Evias Teffont Magna The Shoe The Strand Tidcombe Tiddleywink Tidworth Tilshead Tisbury Tockenham Tollard Royal Trowbridge Tytherington
- Upavon Upper Chute Upper Seagry Upper Upham Upper Woodford Upper Wraxall Upton Lovell Upton Scudamore Urchfont
- Vale of Pewsey
- Wanborough Wardour Warminster Washpool Wedhampton West Ashton West Chisenbury West Dean West Grafton West Grimstead West Kennett West Kington West Knoyle West Lavington West Overton West Stowell Westbrook Westbury Westwood Wexcombe Whaddon (near Salisbury) Whaddon (near Trowbridge) Whiteparish Whitley Widham Wilcot Wilsford (near Pewsey) Wilsford cum Lake Wilton (near Salisbury) Wilton (near Marlborough) Wingfield Winsley Winterbourne Bassett Winterbourne Dauntsey Winterbourne Earls Winterbourne Gunner Winterbourne Monkton Winterbourne Stoke Winterslow Woodborough Woodfalls Wootton Rivers Worton Wroughton Wylye
- Yarnbrook Yatesbury Yatton Keynell
Wiltshire History Facebook Groups
- Wiltshire Family History Society
- Wiltshire and Swindon History Centre
- Wiltshire History Man
Wiltshire Local History Resources
There is an extensive number of UK resources available to local history and family history researchers, many of which contain information about Wiltshire’s places and people.
Local history groups and resources which specifically focus on the history of Wiltshire include:
- Alderbury & Whaddon Local History Research Group
- Amesbury Society
- Atworth History Group
- Bemerton Local History Society
- Bourne Valley Historical Society
- Bratton History Association
- Chiseldon Local History Group
- Codford Local History Society
- Dilton Marsh Local History Society
- Dinton Historical Society
- Easton Royal Heritage Group
- Fovant History Group
- Harrod’s Directory of Dorset and Wiltshire 1865
- Highworth Historical Society
- Kelly’s Directory of Dorset and Wiltshire 1849, 1895, 1903, 1920, 1927, 1939
- Malmesbury History Society
- Marlborough History Society
- Melksham & District Historical Association
- Mere Historical Society
- Netheravon History Group
- Pewsey Vale History Society
- Pigot’s Directory of Gloucestershire and Wiltshire 1822
- Pigot’s Directory of Wiltshire 1830
- Pigot’s Directory of Wiltshire in the year 1842
- Poll of the Freeholders of Wiltshire 1772
- Purton Historical Society
- Redlynch and District Local History Society
- Rodbourne Community History Group
- Royal Gloucestershire, Berkshire and Wiltshire Regiment (Salisbury) Museum
- Royal Wootton Bassett Museum & Heritage Group
- Salisbury Local History Group
- Swallowcliffe Society
- Swindon Collection
- Swindon Society
- Tisbury History Society
- Warminster Museum and History Society
- West Wilts Branch Historical Association
- Westbury Heritage Society
- Whiteparish Historical & Environmental Association
- Wiltshire and Swindon Archives
- Wiltshire Archaeological & Natural History Society
- Wiltshire Community History
- Wiltshire Emigration Database
- Wiltshire Family History Society
- Wiltshire Heritage Library and Museum
- Wiltshire Local History Forum
- Wiltshire Local Studies Library (Wiltshire and Swindon History Centre)
- Wiltshire Record Society
- Wiltshire Wills Project
- Wroughton History Group
- 1848 Post Office Directory for Wiltshire
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Thanks to DJHarty for use of the image of Stonehenge, shown at the top of this page.