Wiltshire, England: Local History Resources

Page Contents:

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
  • Imber
  • 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
  • Zeals

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
  • Moonrakers 
  • 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.