History

This history timeline has been created using many sources of information on the internet. If you know of any other events that should be added, especially from the 20th century, please contact us.

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YearEvent
960Circa. Bathingbourne, an ancient manor first mentioned
1050About. Sir John Oglander, historian of the 17th century, says in his memoirs that the first church “wase bwylt in ye rayne of King Edward the Confessor”.
1071Fitzosbern
William FitzOsbern, who was given charge of the Isle of Wight after the Norman invasion and built Carisbrooke Castle, was killed in a battle at Cassel, Flanders, on 22 February. He gave the church to the Lyre Abbey (which he had founded) in Normandy
Photo by Llywelyn2000 (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 ], via Wikimedia Commons
1075About. Stenbury Manor, originally surrounded by a moat was the seat of the de Aula family soon after the Norman Conquest
1075Lessland Manor reverted to the crown following the rebellion of Roger de Breteuil.
1086Bagwich was listed in Domesday under the name of Abaginge - situated on high ground overlooking the valley of the eastern river Yar to the north west of Godshill
1086Sandford Manor owned by the king in 1086 and previously owned by Edward the Confessor. It is now a small farmhouse with good stone outbuildings
1090Richard de Redvers, Lord of the Island, gave the Manor of Appuldurcombe, which comprised the best part of the parish of Godshill, to the Abbey of Montebourg in Coutances, Normandy. It was originally a small priory of Benedictine monks, situated a short distance from the present ruin.
1250About. Bridgecourt manor was first mentioned in the 13th century, taking its name from a bridge over the river Yar
1272Barton oratory was built by rectors of Godshill and Shalfleet
1350About. All Saints Church dates largely from the 14th century and is the fourth on this site
1450About. All Saints is renowned for its mid-15th century mural of the Lily Cross. Painted over during the Reformation, it was rediscovered in 1842
1450About. The cluster of cottages by the church are reputed to have been built in the 15th century, possibly to house the masons rebuilding the church
1500About. Manor of Appuldurcombe came to the Worsley family through the marriage of Anne, daughter of Sir John Leigh to Sir James Worsley
1543Godshill had a village gun
1550About. Stenbury Manor was pulled down and rebuilt in the 16th century
1557Dame Anne Worsley willed 20 marks for erecting a free Grammar School in Godshill but this was never built and the old Chantry Priest’s House continued to be used
1565Sir Richard Worsley died and there is a memorial to him and his two sons in the south chancel of the church.
1569Sir Richard Worsley's sons died when gunpowder that they were drying exploded in their faces.
1631The communion table, still in the south chancel of the church was erected with a Ten Commandments board on the wall above it.
1650About. Roud Manor – originally a Norman manor, which was rebuilt in the 17th century and later Victorianised
1707The year of the union of England and Scotland. A royal coat of arms was mounted over the church door and shows the arms of England and Scotland impaled, as they are for a married couple.
1722Current Lessland Manor was erected
1727Stenbury Manor moat was filled in and during the work cinerary urns containing bones and ashes were discovered in the banks.
1741The north transept of the church was completely rebuilt by Sir Robert Worsley, in order to provide a suitable place for a grandiose monument to himself and his brother Henry, who served as Governor of Barbados.
1760About. Godshill Park House was built as a home farm to serve the Appuldurcombe Estate.
1770The village poorhouse closed when St Mary’s Hospital was built to house all the poor of the Island.
1774An obelisk was erected on top of the down above Appuldurcombe House at Gat Cliff, Wroxall, by Sir Richard Worsley in memory of Sir Robert Worsley.
177819 Jan. All Saints church was struck by lightning resulting in damage to the clock, tower structure and main windows.
1790The first Methodist Church was built.
1801Census. Population 1,079
1811Census. Population 1,135
1813The Hermitage was built and was the home of Michael Hoy, a merchant trading with Russia, who was Sheriff of London 1812/13.
1815Godshill church has a peal of six bells. They were recast in 1887 from the old peal which had been recast in 1815 with the village gun of 1543 being cast into the tenor bell.
1821Census. Population 1,214
1824Old school was pulled down, the Old Vicarage built in its place and the school rebuilt in its present position by Lord Yarborough
1829Current front of Lessland manor was rebuilt
1831The obelisk on top of the down above Appuldurcombe House at Gat Cliff, Wroxall, was struck by lightning and partially demolished.
1831Census. Population 1,305
1838Methodist Church built to replace the one built in 1790. This chapel is the oldest Wesleyan / Methodist Chapel on the Island.
1841Census. Population 1,435
1842All Saints mural of the Lily Cross, painted over during the Reformation was rediscovered
1848School restored as a misappropriated Grammar School under a scheme of the Charity Commissioners
1851Census. Population 1,316
1860About. Godshill Park House was extended, adding the Regency front, and became a private residence.
1862Williams Mausoleum - churchyard - built for Robert Vaughan Wynne Williams and his daughter, owners of
Appuldurcombe House.
1865About. The Hermitage was burnt down.
1887Godshill church has a peal of six bells. They were recast in 1887 from the old peal which had been recast in 1815 with the village gun of 1543 being cast into the tenor bell.
1894Godshill became a Civil Parish under the Local Government Act 1894, which enabled parish councillors to become elected in all rural parishes with more than 300 electors.
1895The Hermitage was rebuilt.
1897Godshill station opened on 20 July, part of the Newport, Godshill & St Lawrence Railway, later the Isle of Wight Central Railway. It opened as a single platform station with a small goods siding and this layout remained until closure.
1927Godshill station was reduced to the status of an unstaffed halt. It was not a financial success. There was some agricultural traffic, notably milk, and a few local passengers until the bus services became well established.
1928The Village Hall, sold in 2017, opened.
1928About. The Old Bell was once the Bell Inn and continued as a public house until the late 1920’s
1935The Hermitage became the first Island Youth Hostel.
194012 August. German Junkers JU88-9K+AA crashed at Bridgecourt Farm. The aircraft was being piloted by Kommodore Oberst Dr Fisser of KG 51 (HQ flight), the highest ranking German pilot to crash on the island. They were attacking Ventnor Home Chain Radar installations; however just after the attack Hurricanes and Spitfires from 213 were upon them. The Junkers had little cover from the supporting Bf110s and their height was a distinct disadvantage. They were brought down near Godshill, south of Bridgecourt farm. The plane burst into flames on landing and Dr Fisser subsequently died from his wounds. Three other crewmen including Lt. Schad Sdfhr Norhelfer were taken prisoner and survived the war as POWs.
194016 August. A forced landing was made at Bathingbourne Farm when a German Messerschmitt Bf109E-4,2/JG53 which set out from its base in Rennes, came into contact with Spitfires from 234 Squadron and was forced down between Apse Heath and The Fighting Cocks public house. This is thought to have become one of the island's most visited wrecks, after it was recovered and allowed to be placed on display at Newport Fire Station HQ to raise funds for the "The Local Spitfire Fund". Its pilot a F/W Christia Hansen had no injuries and was captured by local farm workers, given a drink in the local pub and then taken into custody and arrested by the local Arreton constable.
1942About. Godshill Park House was used as a wartime army hospital.
194217 March. During low visibility, a Fairey Swordfish being flown by Sqdn. Ldr. N. S Hutchings, decided to put down as best he could. The fog and mists were very low lying and the pilot decided to drop down to see if he could get a better bearing. However he fell victim of being too low and accidentally crash landed the aircraft just outside of Godshill on some marshy ground. All the crew, being Hutchings and R. H Teuton, got out unhurt. It should be noted that there are some differing dates as to the actual event, however Gilliam report that the authority's records show the incident took place on the 17th March, although Leal's account has it happening on the 20th.
1951Appuldurcombe becomes grade I listed. "One of the most significant houses of the English Baroque Style".
1952Godshill Model Village first opened to the public.
1952Godshill Station
Godshill station closed on 15 September.
Photo by John L. Smith
1953About. The Newport (IW) and District Rifle Club purchased land at Sainham Farm and created a fully Home Office licensed 20/25 yds outdoor range with covered firing point.
1959civic trust award
Godshill won a Civic Trust Award for work done on the sharp corner in the road by the Square.
196718 January. Godshill County Primary School was grade II listed.
1968IW Festival 1968
Ford Farm near Godshill (where the ley lines meet) hosted the first ever Isle of Wight Festival. It attracted 10,000 people to see acts such as Jefferson Airplane, Arthur Brown, The Move, Plastic Penny and T-Rex.
Image © David Fairbrother-Roe
1983The obelisk on top of the down above Appuldurcombe House at Gat Cliff, Wroxall, was restored to its current state by General Sir Richard Worsley with assistance from the Isle of Wight Council and the people of Gatcombe Parish.
1985Godshill won the title "Isle of Wight Best Kept Village".
1993
22 November. Godshill Park House was grade II listed.
2000war memorial
Originally located on School Road, the position of the memorial meant that services were difficult to hold. The memorial was moved to the Memorial garden on Church Hill, forming a group with various memorial benches.
2001Census puts the population at 1,465
2011Census puts the population at 1,459
2013Central Mead playing fields, previously under the Trusteeship of the Horticultural Society, became the responsibility of Godshill Parish Council.
2014godshill methodist church
Methodist chapel renovated. Curved ship’s timbers uncovered, suggested that the chapel might have been built using wood from a wreck!
2017
Village Hall sold.

The Story by Rick Diment 2013

historyofgodshillparish2

CLICK HERE to download or print The Story.

CLICK HERE for listed buildings in Godshill