A brief history of Brockenhurst in Hampshire's New

A brief history of Brockenhurst in Hampshire's New Forest

Traces of human presence in Brockenhurst stretch back to the Bronze Age, around 4,000 years ago. Burial mounds, or tumuli, scattered across the landscape bear silent witness to these early residents.

Dating back approximately 4,000 years ago, the historical presence of humans there can be traced all the way to the Bronze Age.

Daily Echo: The Lymington River.

The landscape is adorned with burial mounds, known as tumuli, which serve as a timeless testament to the early inhabitants of this area.

Originating from the ancient words of Old English, the name of the village is thought to be a combination of “broc,” meaning badger, and “hurst,” meaning wooded hill.

In the historical record of 1086, the Domesday Book, the name “Broceste” is first associated with Brockenhurst. This village’s medieval origins are showcased through the presence of St. Nicholas Church, the sole New Forest church mentioned in the famous historic tome.

Daily Echo: High Street.

The church, boasting elements of Saxon and Norman architecture, whispers tales of pilgrims and villagers seeking solace within its ancient walls.

Brockenhurst’s growth and transformation were undeniably shaped by the New Forest’s prestigious reputation. Throughout history, renowned rulers such as Henry VIII and Charles I were drawn to the forest’s allure, indulging in exhilarating hunting expeditions and leaving behind a remarkable heritage of majestic hunting lodges and enchanting trails.

Brockenhurst’s rise to prominence was greatly influenced by Queen Victoria’s deep affection for the Isle of Wight.

This affection, in turn, played a pivotal role in the town’s newfound prosperity and reputation.

The introduction of a railway line, which conveniently included a stop in Brockenhurst, marked the beginning of an era filled with tourism and economic growth.

Daily Echo: Level crossing.

The oldest pub in Brockenhurst is The Filly Inn, which dates back to the 16th century.

The old inn can be found opposite the remains of a PoW camp that housed German prisoners during the Second World War.

The popular watering hole opposite Setley Plain is sporting a new look after undergoing extensive renovation work in 2021.

The popular pub, now run by Punch Pubs & Co, has long been a hit with ramblers and dog walkers.

In the midst of the Great War, Brockenhurst emerged as a vital hub, offering solace and care to brave soldiers who had been injured on the battlefield.

Daily Echo: The Village.

The elegant hotels and grand mansions of the town were ingeniously repurposed, serving as sanctuaries for troops from distant lands such as India, New Zealand, and beyond.

Hidden within the village, there was a covert training hub where the Allied forces meticulously prepared for the pivotal D-Day operation during the Second World War.

The village’s dense foliage and remote positioning provided ideal cover for military drills.

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