Hampstead Norreys (alternatively spelt Hampstead Norris as it is pronounced) is a village and civil parish in Berkshire, England. It is centred on the small tributary the River Pang, north of Newbury.
Church Road (part of the B4009) in the east
|Area||17.03 km2 (6.58 sq mi)|
|Population||832 (2011 census)|
|• Density||49/km2 (130/sq mi)|
|OS grid reference||SU528763|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|EU Parliament||South East England|
Hampstead Norreys was awarded Berkshire's best-kept village in 1979.
As well as the nucleus of Hampstead Norreys, the parish includes the hamlets or localities of Bothampstead, Eling and Wyld Court. Hampstead Norreys has a large recreational field, Dean Meadow, that is used for fetes and parties and by the village football and cricket teams. The school also uses the field for activities.
In March 2011, a community shop was opened in the village, run by local volunteers. Shares in the shop were sold to village residents. It was the first community shop to be opened in a West Berkshire village since the 1990s.
The Living Rainforest
Wyld Court is home to The Living Rainforest, an indoor glass house tropical rainforest with plants, animals and butterflies. It is an ecological centre, an educational centre and a visitor attraction.
World War II
The village was close to the wartime airfield of RAF Hampstead Norris, an RAF Bomber Command Operational Training Unit (OTU) station. The airfield was host to a small number of squadrons of Wellington bombers. The site was bombed on 16 September 1940 by the Luftwaffe in the Battle of Britain. In 1945, the station was used by squadrons of Mosquito fighter bombers and became an ammunition storage depot as part of the Bramley Central Ammunition Depot near Basingstoke after its closure in 1946. Little of the wartime station now remains. There are four remaining pillboxes around where the airfield was and a few air raid shelters in the woods. Part of the bomb storage site remains also.
The site still maintains a modern link with aviation with a farm strip used by a Tiger Moth biplane. It is now known as Haw Farm, part of the Yattendon Estate. An impression of the old runway layout of RAF Hampstead Norris can still be seen from the air. On the edge of the airfield perimeter track is a light beacon and an important VOR beacon known as Compton (CPT), named after the nearby village, which is used as a primary navigational aid for airway routes between European airports such as (Heathrow) and North America.
Hampstead Norreys has a small rural primary school which has served the community for over 150 years.
Sport and leisure
The Dean Field is the local park in Hampstead Norreys. It contains a football and cricket pitch and a children's play area. On the north side of the field is Hampstead Norreys Village Hall. It is considerably larger than the village halls in surrounding villages. On the south side is Eling estate, a large wooded area (consisting of Park Wood, Westbrook Copse, Down Wood and Elingpark Copse) backed by a path which is what remains of the old Didcot, Newbury and Southampton Railway running between Hermitage and Compton, the two nearest villages.
- "Local statistics - Office for National Statistics". neighbourhood.statistics.gov.uk.
- "People power behind village shop". 30 March 2011 – via www.bbc.co.uk.
- "The Domesday Book Online: Berkshire D-M". Retrieved 21 January 2008.
- "Newbury & District - our bus routes" (PDF). www.newburyanddistrict.co.uk.
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