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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Coordinates: 51°31′18″N 0°43′04″W / 51.5217°N 0.7177°W / 51.5217; -0.7177

Maidenhead is located in Berkshire

 Maidenhead shown within Berkshire
Population 58,848 (2001 Census)
OS grid reference SU889811
Unitary authority Windsor and Maidenhead
Ceremonial county Berkshire
Region South East
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Postcode district SL6
Dialling code 01628
Police Thames Valley
Fire Royal Berkshire
Ambulance South Central
EU Parliament South East England
UK Parliament Maidenhead
List of places: UK • England • Berkshire

Maidenhead is a town within the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead, in Berkshire, England. It lies on the River Thames and is situated 25.7 miles (41.4 km) west of Charing Cross in London.



Maidenhead's name, strictly speaking, refers to the busy riverside area where the 'New wharf' or 'Maiden Hythe' was built, perhaps as early as Saxon times. It has been suggested that the nearby Great Hill of Taplow was called the 'Mai Dun' by the Iron Age Brythons. The area of the town centre was originally known as 'South Ellington' and is recorded in the Domesday Book as Ellington in the hundred of Beynhurst.

The entrance to York Road, the oldest continuously used senior football ground in the world[citation needed].

In 1280, a bridge was erected across the river to replace the ferry and the Great Western Road was diverted to make use of it. This led to the growth of Maidenhead: a stopping point for coaches on the journeys between London and Bath and the High Street became populated with inns. The current Maidenhead Bridge, a local landmark, dates from 1777 and was built at a cost of £19,000.

King Charles I met his children for the last time before his execution in 1649 at the Greyhound Inn[citation needed], on the High Street, the site of which is now a branch of the NatWest Bank. A plaque commemorates their meeting.

With the railways beginning to expand in the mid-19th century, the High Street began to change again. Muddy roads were replaced and public services were installed — modern Maidenhead appeared. It became its own entity in 1894, being split from the civil parishes of both Bray and Cookham.

A map of Maidenhead from 1945

Maidenhead Citadel Corps of the Salvation Army was first opened in the Town in the mid 1880s. Maidenhead Citadel Band was soon founded in 1886 by Bandmaster William Thomas who later became Mayor of the Town. Maidenhead Citadel Band of the Salvation Army still takes an active role in the life of the town.


The town is part of the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead, and has a population of around 60,000. It was previously an independent local government borough. The current MP for the Maidenhead Constituency is Theresa May (Conservative). The mayor is Councillor Jesse Grey (Conservative).[1]


The Maidenhead urban area includes urban and suburban regions within the bounds of the town, called Maidenhead Court, North Town, Furze Platt, Pinkneys Green, Highway, Tittle Row, Boyn Hill, Fishery and Bray Wick; as well as suburbs in surrounding civil parishes: Cox Green and Altwood in Cox Green parish, Woodlands Park in White Waltham parish, and part of Bray Wick in Bray parish. Bray village itself is still just about detached. To the east, on the opposite side of the river from Maidenhead, is the village of Taplow in Buckinghamshire. A few miles further on is Slough. To the north are the Cookhams, Cookham Village, Cookham Rise & Cookham Dean. Also nearby is the wealthy area of Pinkneys Green. These lie south of the Berkshire-Buckinghamshire border, which is formed by the River Thames (which then bends southwards to form the Maidenhead-Taplow border). To the south is the village of Holyport. Continuing by road to the South-East leads to the town of Windsor.

On 12 July 1901, Maidenhead entered the UK Weather Records with the Highest 60-min total rainfall at 92 mm. As of November 2008 this record remains.

Maidenhead is located in grid square IO91pm in the coordinate system named after it.


Maidenhead is in England's 'Silicon Corridor' along the M4 motorway west of London. Many residents commute to work in London, or to the towns of Slough and Reading.

Maidenhead's industries include: computer software, plastics, pharmaceuticals, printing and telecommunications.

The Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead last year set up the Partnership for the Regeneration of Maidenhead (PRoM), which has just (October 2008) launched a comprehensive 20 Year Vision and Action Plan for rejuvenating the town centre. Launch of the plan cooincides with confirmation by central government that Maidenhead will be the western terminus of the new CrossRail project. PRoM's plans highlight five key developments which will help shape the town for the future - a large new retail triangle at Queen Street/King Street, an upgraded transport interchange, relocation of the football and bowls clubs, linking Kidwells Park into the High Street and restoring the old waterway as an attractive feature and amenity in the town centre.

Maidenhead was home to the conference that agreed on the Maidenhead Locator System standard.

The average house price in The Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead is the highest in the UK BBC news report, February 2007.

Community facilities

Maidenhead library

Research by the New Economics Foundation rated Maidenhead as an example of a clone town.[2] It offers reasonable High Street shopping facilities including Nicholson's Centre, a shopping centre on the site of Nicholson's brewery. The town also offers an 8-screen Odeon multiplex cinema, a leisure centre (with swimming pool), called the Magnet, and a bowling alley. There is also Norden Farm Centre for the Arts (an arts centre including a theatre). Help with shopping in the town centre can be provided by the Shopmobility service on the ground floor of Nicholson's car park.

Maidenhead Heritage Centre and Museum was established in 1993 and moved to permanent premises in Park Street in 2006.


The world famous Maidenhead Railway Bridge, with the road bridge in the background
Maidenhead Railway Bridge as Turner saw it in 1844

The (Brunel-built) Great Western Railway passes through the town, calling at Maidenhead railway station and offering links to London and stations towards Bristol. It passes over Brunel's Maidenhead Railway Bridge (known locally as the Sounding Arch), famous for its flat brick arches. Maidenhead Station is the beginning of the branch line from Maidenhead to Marlow, Buckinghamshire, and is one of the proposed termini for the London Crossrail scheme. Furze Platt railway station also serves the northern area of Maidenhead.

Currently, rail services are provided by First Great Western who took over the Thames Trains franchise in 2003/4.

Local bus services are provided by First Berkshire & The Thames Valley, Arriva the Shires and Essex and Courtney Coaches.

The A4 runs through the town and crosses the Thames over Maidenhead Bridge. The town lies adjacent to junction 8/9 on the M4 motorway (accessed via the A404(M) and A308(M)). The M4 and M40 are linked by the A404(M)/ A404 which skirts the western side of Maidenhead.

The River Thames runs half a mile to the east of the town centre, and York Stream, which runs through the town centre, connects to the Thames via a system of disused waterways. A renewal scheme is in progess (October 2007) to reopen these waterways. The Jubilee River, part of the flood defence scheme, begins above Boulter's Lock nearby.


The town is also a rowing centre. The Maidenhead Rowing Club organises the Maidenhead Regatta which, along with the Marlow Regatta and Henley Regatta, is often seen as a testing ground for olympic rowing athletes. Maidenhead has often seen winners go on to represent the United Kingdom at the Olympic games.

The town's football team, Maidenhead United, play at York Road, which is the oldest football ground in the world continuously used by the same team.

The Magnet Leisure Centre is home to a swimming pool, gym and fitness studio. Activities includes Martial Arts.


The local newspaper is The Maidenhead Advertiser.

Maidenhead has been the home of Maidenhead Citadel Band of The Salvation Army since 1886.

Educational Institutions

Berkshire College of Agriculture is based in Maidenhead.

Maidenhead Grammar School was converted into a (boys) comprehensive school in the 1970s, and renamed Desborough School. Maidenhead High School, similarly, became Newlands Girls' School. To the western side of the town is Altwood C of E Secondary School and also Cox Green Secondary School. Furze Platt School to the north of Maidenhead caters for junior to college level students; Furze Platt Infant School for younger children, Furze Platt Junior School for junior school aged children and Furze Platt Senior School, (link shown) for years 7 to 13. Maidenhead is also home to St Piran's School, Claires Court School (boys), The College (girls), Highfield (girls) and Ridgeway private prep schools; as well as 3.5Courthouse Junior School. There are two primary catholic schools one situated near Altwood C of E Secondary School called [1] St Edmund Campion Primary School and [2]St Mary's Primary School situated on Cookham Road.

The closest higher education institution is the Thames Valley University (TVU) campus at Slough (9.5 km / 6 miles to the east). TVU Reading and the University of Reading are both approximately 21 km / 13 miles to the west.

Twin towns

Maidenhead is twinned with:

Each year youths from the four towns and Berlin Steglitz (twinned with Bad Godesberg) compete against one another in sports such as volleyball, football, athletics and swimming in the Twin Towns Sports Competition, hosted in turn by each of the five towns. In Maidenhead town centre there are roads named after each of the twin towns (Bad Godesberg Way, Frascati Way and St Clouds Way).

In addition Windsor and Maidenhead are twinned with:

Notable people

A number of notable figures can be counted amongst Maidenhead's current and former residents. The actress and sex symbol Diana Dors resided for much of her life in the town,[3] in several properties, while the broadcaster Richard Dimbleby lived for sometime on Boulter's Island.[4] Author Hugh Lofting, creator of Doctor Dolittle, was born in Maidenhead.[5]

Essayist and novelist Nick Hornby was educated at Maidenhead Grammar School (now Desborough School),[6] as were children's television presenter and radio show host Toby Anstis,[7] author and broadcaster John O'Farrell,[8] and the athlete Mark Richardson as well as well known "Dragon" Peter Jones.

Maidenhead's riverside location has drawn many celebrities, including Red Dwarf actor Chris Barrie.[9] All five Spice Girls are known to have shared a house in Maidenhead for a year preceding their rise to stardom,[10] and Maidenhead's Redroofs Theatre School has produced Hollywood star Kate Winslet.[11]


External links

Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

Maidenhead [1] is a dormitory town in the county of Berkshire in the South East of England.


The constitueny of Maidenhead and Windsor is the most affluent area of the UK, with house prices often exceeding those of Central London. It's position in the River Thames countryside, with close proximity to the capital is unrivalled making it a gold-mine for commuters. It is one of the safest Conservative seats in the UK (The MP is the Shadow Leader of the House, Theresa May).

Like many towns, Maidenhead has its fair share of crime and antisocial behaviour, and the town centre is a little grey and full of concrete. The area near the river, locally known as Maidenhead Riverside, however, is a pleasent contrast to this, offering nice views of the Thames and great walks towards the villages of Cookham and Marlow; and Bray and Windsor and Eton.

Get in

Maidenhead is on the main rail and road routes between London and Reading. It lies on the famous Great Western Railway, famously designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel. Maidenhead train station lies immediately between the Twyford and Taplow stations. If you're in London you will need to get to London Paddington to get a train westward to Maidenhead. Maidenhead is situated on the 8/9 Junction on the M4.

Get around

There are good bus links, you can get most buses from Frascati Way in the town centre, or near Boots on the high street. Maidenhead Maps contains interactive maps for the area, including cycle routes and local facilities. You can also create and submit your own maps by following the simple instructions.


The famous railway bridge designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel.

Boulter's Lock and Boulters Island on the River Thames. A great spot for walks amongst relatively tame squirrels and views of Maidenhead Wier. There is also a small hotel/restaurant on the Island.

Cookham is a picturesque village between Maidenhead and Marlow. It is a traditional English country village with a hugely popular gallery and excellent but expensive restaurants. Trains link Cookham with Maidenhead every hour. Alternatively walk there along the River, about 1 hour.


Investigate the Norden Farm arts centre, which is newly opened and contains a theatre and arthouse cinema. There is an Odeon mainstream cinema in the town centre. The Magnet Leisure centre is complimented by the David Lloyd Fitness Centre. Visit Maidenhead Heritage Centre to discover the town's fascinating history and to purchase unique Maidenhead souvenirs (website available)


The town centre is a fairly typical one, containing most high street shops, including Next, Virgin Megastore, Boots, Superdrug, Marks and Spencer, and TopShop.


Indian restaurants such as the Cookham Tandoori and the Emperor of India are well recommended. There are also decent Thai and Chinese restaurants. One of Britain's culinary capitals, the village of Bray, is a very short distance away. This village contains the Roux Brothers' Waterside Inn as well as Heston Blumenthal's Fat Duck, which is currently the second best restaurant in the world according to Caterer Magazine.


Surrounding villages and suburbs have some excellent ancient pubs. The town centre has Chicago Rock Cafe, Que Pasa, and a Ivory Lounge. Non-chain bars include Phatz Bar, good for live music, as well as Heroes and Smokey Joes. Surprisingly, the Lloyds/Wetherspoons branch in Maidenhead (The Greyhound) is featured in a CAMRA drinking guide. Lovers of ale should head there since there is a great and ever changing line up of taps. Well, the pub is really for everyone since its prices can't be beaten locally.


Rooms to rent in Maidenhead - Thieves Garden self catering apartment for short term lets. Thieves Garden provides well equipped accommodation for anyone looking rooms to rent in Maidenhead. Ideal for those visiting the region who are looking for the comfort of a hotel but with the extra space and independence of a self-catering apartment - without the need for long term contracts or utility bills.

Get out

Maidenhead is 25 minutes away from London Paddington on a fast train (7.25am).

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1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010
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Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

See also maidenhead


Proper noun

Wikipedia has an article on:



  1. a town in Berkshire, England

Simple English


Maidenhead shown within Berkshire
Population 58,848 (2001 Census)
OS grid reference SU889811
Unitary authority Windsor and Maidenhead
Ceremonial county Berkshire
Region South East
Constituent country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Postcode district SL6
Dialling code 01628
Police Thames Valley
Fire Royal Berkshire
Ambulance South Central
UK Parliament Maidenhead
European Parliament South East England
List of places: UKEnglandBerkshire
Coordinates: 51°31′18″N 0°43′04″W / 51.5217°N 0.7177°W / 51.5217; -0.7177

Maidenhead is a town in England in Berkshire. About 60,000 people live in the town. The town is about 25 miles (41 kilometres) from London. It is named after a wharf that was built there in 1297. It lies on the River Thames.

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