Haddenham, Buckinghamshire

Haddenham, Buckinghamshire

Infobox UK place
country = England
official_name= Haddenham
latitude= 51.771
longitude= -0.928
civil_parish= Haddenham
population = 4,834 [ [http://www.neighbourhood.statistics.gov.uk/dissemination/LeadTableView.do?a=7&b=792045&c=Haddenham&d=16&e=15&g=424235&i=1001x1003x1004&m=0&r=1&s=1216848874951&enc=1&dsFamilyId=779 Neighbourhood Statistics 2001 Census] ]
shire_district= Aylesbury Vale
shire_county= Buckinghamshire
region= South East England
constituency_westminster= Buckingham
post_town= AYLESBURY
postcode_district= HP17
postcode_area= HP
dial_code= 01844
os_grid_reference= SP739086

static_image_caption=Towards Haddenham

Haddenham is a large village and is also a civil parish within Aylesbury Vale district in Buckinghamshire, England. It is about convert|5|mi|0 south-west of Aylesbury and convert|2|mi|0 north-east of Thame. The village name is Anglo-Saxon and means "Haeda's Homestead" or, perhaps, "the home of the Hadding tribe". There is an intriguing possibility that the first villagers were members of the Hadding tribe from Haddenham in Cambridgeshire. It is known that the first Anglo-Saxons to settle in the Vale of Aylesbury were followers of Cuthwulf, from Cottenham in Cambridgeshire, who marched south-west to the Thames after routing the British at the Battle of Bedford in 571. It was listed in the Domesday Book of 1086 as "Hedreham", but by 1142 had taken on its more modern form and was called "Hedenham".

From the Norman conquest to the time of the Dissolution of the Monasteries the village was in the possession of the Convent of St Andrew in Rochester. King Henry VIII, who gained possession of the village after the dissolution and held it until his death, after which it passed to his daughter Elizabeth I.

The village had a Royal charter as a market town between 1294 and 1301. The market was short-lived because the manor of Thame found they were seriously out-of-pocket because a rival market was held so close by.

Haddenham is one of many reputed to be the largest village in England, but this claim is without substance as there are many larger. It does however have its own industrial area adjoining the small grass-strip airfield, a commercial district and a station on the main line from Birmingham to London Marylebone.

Haddenham is known nationally as one of the three unique "wychert (or whitchet) villages". Wychert describes a method of construction using a white clay mixed with straw to make walls and buildings, which are then thatched or topped with red clay tiles.

Haddenham is also renowned for its ponds which were used to breed Aylesbury ducks. Breeding has been revived recently on the pond in front of the parish church. The church, of Norman origin, is dedicated to St Mary the Virgin. There is also a Roman Catholic Church, and Baptist and Methodist Chapels. The chapels are both of whitchet construction and the latter houses the village museum in a former schoolroom to the rear of the building.

Another possibly spurious claim is that the Methodist Chapel is the largest building in the world made of whitchet (wychert). Although it (and the similarly-sized Baptist Chapel) is a sizeable building the most remarkable fact is the unsupported height rather than length of the walls - one of which collapsed in July 2001 but was rebuilt.

Haddenham is served by three primary schools: Haddenham Community Infant School, Haddenham Community Junior School and the voluntary aided, Haddenham St Mary's Church of England School.

There are five pubs: Kings Head, Red Lion, Rose and Thistle, Rising Sun and the Green Dragon (also know as the Welsh Wok after taking part in BBC2's prime time competition The Restaurant). Two former pubs are now restaurants – the Crown is now the House of Spice (Indian) and the Wagon and Horses a Chinese (Peking Rendezvous).

Shopping facilities are limited owing to the nearby towns, but the village still has a baker and a greengrocer and some smaller retailers. There is also a cafe and a gym.

Haddenham is also the home of Tiggywinkles, the animal welfare charity and veterinary hospital, [ [http://www.charity-commission.gov.uk/registeredcharities/showcharity.asp?regno=286447&submit=Run+Search Charity Commission for England and Wales: Charity No. 286447] ] and the Vale "Real Ale" Brewery.

The village has been used as the backdrop for a number of television programmes including eight episodes of "Midsomer Murders".


External links

* [http://www.haddenham.net Village website]
* [ The Witchert Buildings of Buckinghamshire, England:Learning Sustainable Construction from our Ancestors] (Google cached version accessed 10 March 2006)
* [http://www.box-com.biz/Haddenham/Haddenhammuseum.htm Haddenham Museum]

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