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Carisbrooke: Wikis


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Coordinates: 50°41′30″N 1°19′02″W / 50.69174°N 1.31725°W / 50.69174; -1.31725

Carisbrooke Church.jpg
Carisbrooke Church.
Carisbrooke is located in Isle of Wight

 Carisbrooke shown within the Isle of Wight
OS grid reference SZ483882
Unitary authority Isle of Wight
Ceremonial county Isle of Wight
Region South East
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town Newport
Postcode district PO30
Dialling code 01983
Police Hampshire
Fire Isle of Wight
Ambulance Isle of Wight
EU Parliament South East England
UK Parliament Isle of Wight
List of places: UK • England • Isle of Wight

Carisbrooke is a village on the south western outskirts of Newport, Isle of Wight. It is best known as the site of Carisbrooke Castle. It also has a medieval St. Mary's Church, Carisbrooke. This is said to be the island's finest church. St. Mary's Church, (overlooking Carisbrooke High Street with views to the castle), began life as part of a Benedictine priory, established by French monks about 1150. The priory was dissolved by King Henry V of England in 1415 during the French Wars. Neglect over the centuries took its toll, but in 1907 the church was restored to its full glory. Its most striking feature is the 14th century tower, rising in five stages with a turret at one corner and a battlemented and pinnacled crown.

There is also a Roman Villa which was discovered in the Victorian era, this is on the site of the old vicarage and has now been converted into private residences.



It is served by Southern Vectis buses on route 6 and route 7 operating to Freshwater, Newport, Yarmouth and Ventnor, as well as some smaller villages. There is also a local bus route, numbered 38.[1] It was served by nearby Carisbrooke railway station until it closed in the mid-50s. It is also the starting point of the Tennyson Trail, leading to Alum Bay.

Local Amenities

It has two pubs - the Waverley and the Eight Bells, an Italian restaurant called Valentino's and a motorcycle dealership called Dave Death Motorcycles. Its founder was killed in a motorcycle crash. There are several shops on the High Street including a Co-Op, Hair Salon and Vintage Clothing Shop. The village also has four schools, three of which are along Wellington Road. These are Carisbrooke CE Primary School, Christ the King College (formerly Archbishop King Middle and Trinity Middle Schools) and Carisbrooke High School. The fourth school is St Thomas of Canterbury RC Primary School, which is located on Carisbrooke High Street next to the doctors surgery. There is also the village allotments, situated next to the ford in Castle Street.


Carisbrooke was for centuries the island 's capital and was once called Buccombe or Beaucombe, and means the ' fair valley'.

The Governor of Newport once lived at Landscape House, at the upper part of Carisbrooke High Street in the Victorian era. Alexander Ross, prolific Scottish writer and controversialist, was vicar of Carisbrooke from 1634 until his death in 1654.

The site of the old Carisbrooke railway station lies on the grounds of Christ the King College in the lower part of the field, which is at the end of Purdy Road. The bank is all that remains of the old line.

When in 1917 the British royal family changed its name from the "House of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha" to the "House of Windsor" and renounced all German titles, the title of Marquess of Carisbrooke was created for the erstwhile German Prince Alexander of Battenberg.

Carisbrooke Castle

Carisbrooke Castle was originally a Roman fort. The castle is located at the top of Castle Hill, accessed by Carisbrooke High Street, then bear right at Cedar Hill.It was built soon after William the Conqueror came to England. The William FitzOsbern, 1st Earl of Hereford may have been responsible for its construction, but he was killed in battle during 1071 and so would have had little opportunity to oversee the construction. Osbern's son, Roger, is more likely to have built or refortified the castle. It was at Carisbrooke Castle that William arrested his own half brother, Odo for acts of treason.

King Henry I of England granted the castle in the first year of his reign to Richard de Redvers. The Redvers family owned the castle for much of the Medieval period, only ending in November 1293 when the last Redvers, Isabel died. In 1136, Baldwin de Redvers took refuge in the castle on the run from King Stephen of England. Unfortunately the wells on the island ran dry and Baldwin gave up the land in exchange for his head. Baldwin's land was restored to him in 1153 when Henry II became king. Baldwin, the last male in the line, died in 1216 poisoned, it is said by Peter II of Savoy. Isabella de Fortibus, Baldwin's sister took control of the castle and successfully ran it until her death in 1293.After the death of Isabella de Fortibus in 1293 the castle became the property of Edward I and the crown.

In 1355 Edward III granted the ownership of the castle to his daughter Isabel. In 1377 The French landed on the Isle of Wight and attacked Carisbrooke castle. The castle did not fall to the French. Later in 1647 Charles I took refuge at Carisbrooke but the castle later turned out to be his prison from where he attempted several times to escape but failed.

Carisbrooke Priory

Carisbrooke Priory is a house offering Christian healing and prayer in an atmosphere of peace and stillness. The Priory is situated on Whitcombe Road, at the junction for Nunnery Lane on top of the hill and is surrounded by beautiful scenery. It is normally open on weekdays from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm (except Bank Holidays) and the first Saturday morning of each month.

Originally built in 1866, known as St. Dominic's Priory it housed Roman Catholic nuns who lived and worked here right up to 1993. The building itself is absolutely stunning, built in a neo-gothic style which was very popular in the Victorian era. Carisbrooke Priory is a local landmark and has excellent views of not only the vast countryside of south wight but also the wall and moat of neighbouring Carisbrooke Castle.


  1. ^ "Southern Vectis - bus routes". 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-04. 

External links


1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

CARISBROOKE, a town in the Isle of Wight, England, i m. S. of Newport. Pop. (1901) 3993. The valley of the Lugley brook separates the village from the steep conical hill crowned by the castle, the existence of which has given Carisbrooke its chief fame. There are remains of a Roman villa in the valley, but no reliable mention of Carisbrooke occurs in Saxon times, though it has commonly been identified with the Saxon Wihtgaraburh captured by Cerdic in J30. Carisbrooke is not mentioned by name in the Domesday Survey, but Bowcombe, its principal manor, was a dependency of the royal manor of Amesbury, and was obtained from the king by William Fitz Osbern in exchange for three Wiltshire manors. The castle is mentioned in the Survey under Alvington, anal was probably raised by William Fitz Osbern, who was made first lord of the Isle of Wight. From this date lordship of the Isle of Wight was always associated with ownership of the castle, which thus became the seat of government of the island. Henry I. bestowed it on Richard de Redvers, in whose family it continued until Isabella de Fortibus sold it to Edward I., after which the government was entrusted to wardens as representatives of the crown. The keep was added to the castle in the reign of Henry I., and in the reign of Elizabeth, when the Spanish Armada was expected, it was surrounded by an elaborate pentagonal fortification. The castle was garrisoned by Baldwin de Redvers for the empress Maud in 1136, but was captured by Stephen. In the reign of Richard II. it was unsuccessfully attacked by the French; Charles I. was imprisoned here for fourteen months before his execution. Afterwards his two youngest children were confined in the castle, and the Princess Elizabeth died there. In 1904 the chapel of St Nicholas in the castle was reopened and reconsecrated, having been rebuilt as a national memorial of Charles I. The remains of the castle are extensive and imposing, and the keeper's house and other parts are inhabited, but the king's apartments are in ruins. Within the walls is a well 200 ft. deep; and another in the centre of the keep is reputed to have been still deeper. The church of St Mary, Carisbrooke, has a beautiful Perpendicular tower, and contains transitional Norman portions. Only the site can be traced of the Cistercian priory to which it belonged. This was founded shortly after the Conquest and originated from the endowment which the monks of Lyre near Evreux held in Bowcombe, including the church, mill, houses, land and tithes of the manor. Richard II. bestowed it on the abbey of Mountgrace in Yorkshire. It was restored by Henry IV., but was dissolved by act of parliament in the reign of Henry V., who bestowed it on his newly-founded charter-house at Sheen. Carisbrooke formerly had a considerable market, several mills, and valuable fisheries, but it never acquired municipal or representative rights, and was important only as the site of the castle.

See Victoria County History - Hampshire; William Westall, History of Carisbrooke Castle (1850).

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