Chalfont St Peter

A large amount of prehistoric material has been found in Chalfont St Peter. A Palaeolithic flint handaxe was found in the garden of 6 Carpenter’s Wood Drive; a fragment of a Palaeolithic or Mesolithic axe was found in Gayhurst School grounds; one was found with Mesolithic to Bronze Age flakes and blades at 36 Field Way; in Chalfont Park; at the Grange School; and at 12 Nortoft Road.



A great many Mesolithic and Neolithic flint artefacts have also been found. Some of the major flint scatters are: a Mesolithic flint scatter was found in advance of the construction of the M25 at Marsh Farm and included over 50 flakes, a tranchet axehead, a scraper, a core and a hammerstone; there was an excavation at Mopes Farm that uncovered a Neolithic pit with several flakes in it; at Horn Hill where several Neolithic polished axeheads, an arrowhead and over 150 flakes were found; Neolithic hammerstones, flakes, a fabricator, core and several flakes were found in Siblett’s Wood and other flint scatters have been found near this wood; the potato field at Grange School turned up flakes and cores, a hammerstone, several scrapers, and an axehead; two cores, five scrapers, 4 retouched flakes and the groundsman found an undated burial that may have been prehistoric at this school; 42 other flakes were found east of Weedon Dell; eight flakes, two cores, three blades and a scraper were found in Carpenter’s Wood; and eighteen scrapers, many flakes, four awls, six cores and two flint laurel leaves were found east of Birchwood. Flint flakes and burnt flint was also found in Chalfont St Peter’s allotments in a training excavation for the Young Archaeologists Club. There are also several minor flint scatters around the parish. A ring-ditch and a linear cropmark were seen on an aerial photograph over Mumford’s Farm and may also date to the prehistoric period.




Hoard of Roman coins found in a potSeveral Roman coins have been found round the parish, but no Roman buildings. The finds of coins on the cricket ground have prompted speculations that this is the site of a villa. A large hoard of Roman coins and three urns were found in Whan Cross Field by a metal-detectorist and subsequent excavations revealed another in situ urn filled with coins (see right). Two Roman roads are thought to pass through the parish, too. The Saxon period is represented by a single bead found in the 1930s at Chalfont Cottage Hospital by workmen.




Chalfont St Peter is mentioned in Domesday, as is Chalfont Mill. There are also medieval records of two manors in the parish. Chalfont Manor seems to have been based at Mumford’s Farm; the farmhouse is sixteenth century in date. The other manor is known as Brudenells or Bulstrode Manor. There are several earthworks surviving from the medieval period around the parish, too. These include medieval woodland management features and an enclosure in Philipshill Wood; a medieval moat survives at Gerrards Cross golf club; and an enclosure exists on Austenwood Common.




Newland's ParkAll the medieval buildings in the parish have disappeared. St Peter’s medieval church collapsed in 1708 and was rebuilt in 1726. There was a chantry chapel in the church, established in 1447, but it was suppressed in 1547. Windsor’s shoe shop was a medieval hall house and it was recorded before it was demolished in 1966. Hill Farm on Joiner’s Lane dated to the fourteenth or fifteenth century but is also now demolished. A whole village at Tatling End was recorded on maps until the nineteenth century but is also now gone.




Reconstructed Iron Age house at the Chiltern Open Air MuseumMany of the surviving historic buildings in the parish date to the eighteenth century, such as Chalfont Park House; Newland Park; Water Hall and Hill House, for example. The Chiltern Open Air Museum was opened in 1976 and many houses from around Buckinghamshire and the Chilterns have been moved there and rebuilt. The Chalfont Colony for Epileptics, now known as the Chalfont Centre, was opened in 1894 and has landscaped grounds and several nineteenth and twentieth century residential villas. All Saints Church was also built in the nineteenth century.




Pre-fab house moved to the Chiltern Open Air Museum from Finch Lane, AmershamThe later centuries saw a lot of industry, too. Beaconsfield Pottery was set up in the nineteenth century; Kiln Wood brickworks is recorded on a nineteenth century map; and there is a windmill on an eighteenth century map of Austenwood Common.



Want to find out more?  Read the detailed historic town report for Chalfont St Peter (below).