Little Bookham

Little Bookham

infobox UK place
country = England
latitude= 51.280
longitude= -0.376
official_name= Little Bookham
map_type= Surrey
population =
shire_district= Mole Valley
shire_county = Surrey
region= South East England
constituency_westminster= Mole Valley
post_town= Leatherhead
postcode_district = KT
postcode_area= KT
dial_code= 01372
os_grid_reference= TQ1254

Little Bookham is a village in Surrey, England, located next to Great Bookham, Fetcham and Leatherhead.

Bookham railway station is situated in the village.


It is difficult to conjecture when the parish of Little Bookham was formed. The first documentary evidence can be found after the conversion of England to Christianity in the 7th century. The Venerable Bede states that Erconwald, who became Bishop of London in 674, founded the Benedictine Abbey of St. Peter of Chertsey in 666, and Frithuwald, who was sub-king or regent of Surrey, joined in the grant endowing the abbey with certain lands. Frithuwald, however, seems to have been the subject at that time of Ecgberht, King of Kent, and the charter is stated to have been confirmed by Wulfhere, King of Mercia, to whom the overlordship of Surrey must have been passed before his death in 675. It has been stated that the monastery was first built under King Egbert.

According to a charter C.675, the original of which is lost but which exists in a later form, there was granted to the Abbey twenty dwellings at "Bocham cum Effingham". This was confirmed by four Saxon kings; Offa, "King of the Mercians and of thenations roundabout" in 787; Athelstan who was "King and ruler of the whole island of Britain" in 933 confirmed the privileges to the monastery; King Edgar, "Emperor of all Britain" in 967 confirmed "twelve mansiones" in Bocham, and King Edward the Confessor, "King of the English" in 1062 confirmed twenty "mansae" at Bocham cum Effingham, Driteham and Pechingeorde. Driteham and Pechingeorde are both referred to in the Domesday Book and appear to have been absorbed into the manors of Effingham and Effingham East Court.

Little Bookham lay within the Anglo-Saxon administrative district of Effingham half hundred.

Little Bookham appears in Domesday Book as "Bocheham". It was held by Halsard from William de Braiose. Its Domesday Assets were: 2 hides; 2 ploughs, convert|4|acre|m2 of meadow, herbage and pannage worth 11 hogs. It rendered (in total): £3. [ [ Domesday Book for Surrey] ]

Parts of the present parish of Effingham, however, lying to the east of EffinghamCommon Road at one time belonged to the parish of Little Bookham. The charters of Frithwald, Offa, Edgar and Edward the Confessor are all believed to be substantially fabricated, but probably embodied authentic material or recorded an earlier genuine transaction. These charters were probably written at a later date than stated in order to confirm a position which was thought to have existed at that earlier date. The Charter of Athelstan, however, is believed to be complete fabrication.

It seems probable, as the number of cottages in Bocham cum Effingham remained constant, that the later charters must have been copies of earlier charters which were not revised to accord with the actual number of cottages at any one time.

Domesday Book record

The Domesday Book 1086, which was a survey for taxation purposes, makes the first known distinction between the parishes of Great and Little Bookham. If it is assumed that there was no separate parish at the time of the charter of Edward the Confessor in 1062. As the Domesday Book makes no reference to there being a church in Little Bookham, then the church must have been built sometime subsequent to that date and that the parish of Little Bookham is evidently a slice cut from the parish of Bookham. By way of confirmation of this supposition that there is no distinction between the two parishes, as recently as 1824, lay documents relate to land transactions, in which land was described as being "in Great Bookham in the parish of Bookham".

The Domesday survey refers to the manor of Little Bookham being held by Halsard of William de Braose, Lord of Bramber, and the manor appears to have remained in the Halsard or Hansard family until about 1291. It would seem, therefore, that Little Bookham Parish Church was built by the Hansard family about 1100 and probably at first was a manorial chapel.

ee also

* Bookham Commons


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