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History of Wilmington

Wilmington comes from the Old English ‘ing’ a ‘connective particle, linking the first and last elements’ and ‘tūn’ meaning an ‘enclosure a farmstead, a village’ combined with a warlord’s name; therefore, ‘farm/settlement connected with Wighelm’. The Textus Roffensis records Wilmington as Wilmentuna and Wilmintune.


Wilmington parish church is a Grade: I listed building, dedicated to Saint Michael. The Saxons built it as a Chapel-of-Ease to Sutton-at-Hone, until becoming a parish in 1478. The Normans rebuilt the church in the late 11th century. There is a record of four bells in 1552, which William Land II replaced with a treble in 1618 and a tenor in 1636. In 1685, Christopher Hodson cast a middle bell. In 1797, Edward Hasted described the Wilmington church as consisting of ‘one isle and a chancel, having a spire steeple at the west end, which standing on the knoll of the hill, is an object for many miles round. There are three bells in it’. Edward Cresy rebuilt the north Aisle in 1839, and Ewan Christian reconstructed the chancel in 1884. In 1909, Robert Merchant rebuilt the nave and south aisle and added a porch under the west tower…. more