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Great Alne

Great Alne

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Great Alne is a small village, known as Round Alne in the Middle Ages. It is situated seven miles north-west of Stratford-upon-Avon
Stratford-upon-Avon is a market town and civil parish in south Warwickshire, England. It lies on the River Avon, south east of Birmingham and south west of Warwick. It is the largest and most populous town of the District of Stratford-on-Avon, which uses the term "on" to indicate that it covers...

, three miles north-east of Alcester
Alcester is an old market town of Roman origin at the junction of the River Alne and River Arrow in Warwickshire, England. It is situated approximately west of Stratford-upon-Avon, and 8 miles south of Redditch, close to the Worcestershire border...

, and 15 miles from Warwick in the County of Warwickshire
Warwickshire is a landlocked non-metropolitan county in the West Midlands region of England. The county town is Warwick, although the largest town is Nuneaton. The county is famous for being the birthplace of William Shakespeare...

, England
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; the Irish Sea is to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the south west, with the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south separating it from continental...

, on the road to Wootton Wawen
Wootton Wawen
Wootton Wawen is a small village and civil parish in the Stratford-on-Avon district of Warwickshire, England. The village is located on the A3400, from Birmingham, miles south of Henley-in-Arden and miles north of Stratford-upon-Avon. The soil is a strong clay and some arable crops are grown,...

 via Little Alne. The name Great Alne takes its name from the River Alne. First chronicled in the charter of King Ethelbald (723-737) "near to the river which our ancestors used to call, and which is called to this day, 'Alwine'." The Celtic word Alwine meaning bright or clear.http://www.greatalne-pc.gov.uk/village.cfm?source=menu
On 26 November 1969 Warwickshire County Council formally designated an area within Great Alne as a Conservation Area, including most of the village east of the Memorial Hall and has within its curtlage twelve listed buildings of local architectural and historical value. http://www.greatalne-pc.gov.uk/recreation-environment.cfm?source=left In the 2001 census, the population of the parish was 587.


Land at Alne was given by Coenwulf, King of the Mercians
Coenwulf of Mercia
Coenwulf was King of Mercia from December 796 to 821. He was a descendant of a brother of King Penda, who had ruled Mercia in the middle of the 7th century. He succeeded Ecgfrith, the son of Offa; Ecgfrith only reigned for five months, with Coenwulf coming to the throne in the same year that Offa...

, about 809, to his newly founded abbey of Winchcombe in Gloucestershire. The Domesday Book
Domesday Book
Domesday Book , now held at The National Archives, Kew, Richmond upon Thames in South West London, is the record of the great survey of much of England and parts of Wales completed in 1086...

 records " in Ferncombe Hundred, Winchcombe Abbey
Winchcombe Abbey
Winchcombe Abbey is a now-vanished Benedictine abbey in Winchcombe, Gloucestershire, this abbey was once the capital of Mercia, an Anglo Saxon kingdom at the time of the Heptarchy in England. The Abbey was founded c. 798 for three hundred Benedictine monks, by King Offa of Mercia or King Kenulf. In...

 holds 6 hides in (Great) Alne. Land for 6 ploughs. In lordship 1 plough; 3 slaves. 11 villagers with 4 smallholders have 5 ploughs. A mill at 5s; woodland 1/2 leaugue long with 4 furlongs wide. The value was £3; now £4." It remained in the hands of the monastery until the dissollution
Dissolution of the Monasteries
The Dissolution of the Monasteries, sometimes referred to as the Suppression of the Monasteries, was the set of administrative and legal processes between 1536 and 1541 by which Henry VIII disbanded monasteries, priories, convents and friaries in England, Wales and Ireland; appropriated their...

 when it passed to the crown who leased it to the Throckmortons
Throckmorton Baronets
There have been two Baronetcies created for different branches of the Throckmorton family, 6th. cousins, both descended from Sir John Throckmorton, Under-Treasurer of England temp. King Henry VI. Both titles, which were in the Baronetage of England, are now extinct...

 of Coughton
Coughton Court
Coughton Court is an English Tudor country house, situated on the main road between Studley and Alcester in Warwickshire. It is a Grade I listed building....

 until 1 December 1599 when Queen Elizabeth I
Elizabeth I of England
Elizabeth I was queen regnant of England and Ireland from 17 November 1558 until her death. Sometimes called The Virgin Queen, Gloriana, or Good Queen Bess, Elizabeth was the fifth and last monarch of the Tudor dynasty...

 sold it to Edward Stone of the city of Westminster and Thomas Gainsford of the city of London, Gainsford later made over his part to Stone. It has since passed through a number private hands being owned by different local families including the Throckmortons and Holyoakes.

Alne Mill, conveted into luxuary apartments in 1989, lies about a quarter of a mile to the south of the village and the road leading down to it is probably the Milnewey or Millway mentioned in 1541 and 1728. The mill at Alne was worth 5s. in Domesday had increased in value to 6s. 8d. in the Taxation of 1291. In 1516 it was let by the abbot to John and Elizabeth Palmer at an annual rent of £1 10s.


Great Alne is in the Kinwarton ward of Stratford on Avon District Council and represented by Councillor Lynn Bowring of the Liberal Democrats
Liberal Democrats
The Liberal Democrats are a social liberal political party in the United Kingdom which supports constitutional and electoral reform, progressive taxation, wealth taxation, human rights laws, cultural liberalism, banking reform and civil liberties .The party was formed in 1988 by a merger of the...

 Party. Nationally it is part of Stratford on Avon
Stratford-on-Avon (UK Parliament constituency)
-By-elections:-Notes and references:...

 constituency, whose current Member of Parliament following the 2010 election is Nadhim Zahawi
Nadhim Zahawi
Nadhim Zahawi is a British Conservative Party politician who has been the Member of Parliament for Stratford-on-Avon since 2010, after the retirement of previous MP John Maples....

 of the Conservative Party
Conservative Party (UK)
The Conservative Party, formally the Conservative and Unionist Party, is a centre-right political party in the United Kingdom that adheres to the philosophies of conservatism and British unionism. It is the largest political party in the UK, and is currently the largest single party in the House...

. It is included in the West Midlands
West Midlands (European Parliament constituency)
West Midlands is a constituency of the European Parliament. For 2009 it elected 6 MEPs using the d'Hondt method of party-list proportional representation. The constituency will also elect a "virtual MEP" who will be able to sit in the Parliament if the Treaty of Lisbon comes into effect...

 electoral region of the European Parliament and the six members are; Mike Nattrass
Mike Nattrass
Mike Nattrass is an English politician and Member of the European Parliament, representing the West Midlands constituency for the UK Independence Party , elected for the first time in June 2004 and re-elected in June 2009....

 (UK Independence), Liz Lynne
Liz Lynne
Elizabeth Lynne, known as Liz Lynne, is a British politician, and has been a Member of the European Parliament for the West Midlands for the Liberal Democrats since her election at the 1999 European election...

 (Liberal Democrat), Malcolm Harbour
Malcolm Harbour
Malcolm Harbour is a British politician. He is a Conservative Member of the European Parliament for the West Midlands. He is a member of the European Conservatives and Reformists Group and the Chairman of the Committee on Internal Market and Consumer Protection.-Motor industry:Malcolm Harbour was...

 (Conservative), Michael Cashman
Michael Cashman
Michael Maurice Cashman is a British former actor, now a Labour politician. He has been a Member of the European Parliament for the West Midlands constituency since 1999.- Acting :...

 (Labour), Philip Bradbourn
Philip Bradbourn
Philip Bradbourn OBE MEP is a British politician, and Member of the European Parliament for the West Midlands, for the Conservative Party...

 OBE (Conservative) and Nicole Sinclaire
Nikki Sinclaire
Nicole Sinclaire is a European politician from the United Kingdom and is a current MEP.Educated at the University of Canterbury graduating with a Bachelor of Laws qualification. Sinclaire has worked for Lloyds as a 'problem troubleshooter' was employed as a Gateway store manager and worked in...

 (UK Independence).

Notable buildings

The parish church of St Mary Magdalene
Mary Magdalene
Mary Magdalene was one of Jesus' most celebrated disciples, and the most important woman disciple in the movement of Jesus. Jesus cleansed her of "seven demons", conventionally interpreted as referring to complex illnesses...

 consists of a chancel
In church architecture, the chancel is the space around the altar in the sanctuary at the liturgical east end of a traditional Christian church building...

 with a modern north vestry, nave
In Romanesque and Gothic Christian abbey, cathedral basilica and church architecture, the nave is the central approach to the high altar, the main body of the church. "Nave" was probably suggested by the keel shape of its vaulting...

, north aisle, and west porch-turret. Whilst 13th century in origin with some later additions, much restoration was completed in 1837 when the nave was enlarged and a west gallery added, providing 86 additional seats, according to a record in the church. The west wall, with an entrance and two windows, is modern, as is also the west porch, which is carried up as a square bell-turret changing to an octagon at the top and having an octagonal pyramidal roof. There is one bell of 1670 by John Martin of Worcester. The modern north aisle has two north windows, and one at the east and at the west. The font, of flower-pot shape, may be an old one re-tooled: it has a shallow bowl. The top has been repaired on opposite sides, probably where former staples existed. The stainded glass in the East window dates from 1860 and is by Hardman & Co.
Hardman & Co.
Hardman & Co., otherwise John Hardman Trading Co., Ltd., founded 1838, began manufacturing stained glass in 1844 and became one of the world's leading manufacturers of stained glass and ecclesiastical fittings...

  who were also responsible for the stained glass in the Houses of Parliament.

Thomas Clarke the rector at the time of the puritan "Survei of the Ministrie in Warwickshier" of 1586 was described; "parson no precher nor learned, yet honest of life & zealous in religion he hath 3 or 4 charges & cures beside that of Kynerton, Witeley? (Weethley) he supplieth by his deputies : his hirelinges that serue by his non-residentship are all dumbe & idle & some of them gamsters : vah of all Ixxx" a yeare."http://www.archive.org/stream/publicationsdugd10dugduoft/publicationsdugd10dugduoft_djvu.txt

A wooden war memorial to the memory of those men of the parish who gave their lives in the First and Second World Wars, which interestingly contains the name of a woman, Sister E.M. Elvins.
There is one pub restaurant The Huff Cap,http://www.huffcapgreatalne.com/ formerly the Mother Huff Cap Inn, the name deriving from the days when most pubs brewed their own beer, Huff Cap being a 16th century term for a strong ale which would "huf ones cap" or make the head swell, not for the froth on the top of the beer as is sometimes stated. The 'mother' is likely to be the dame who brewed the beer and managed the public house. In 1746 the pub is thought to have been 'The Huff Cap' and to have acquired 'mother' later. This hostelry was once on the main coach road from Stratford to Bridgnorth.


Great Alne Primary School is located on the edge of the village, about a mile from the outskirts of Alcester.
School Compulsory education stage School website Ofsted
Office for Standards in Education
The Office for Standards in Education, Children's Services and Skills is the non-ministerial government department of Her Majesty's Chief Inspector of Schools In England ....

Great Alne Primary School Primary
Primary education
A primary school is an institution in which children receive the first stage of compulsory education known as primary or elementary education. Primary school is the preferred term in the United Kingdom and many Commonwealth Nations, and in most publications of the United Nations Educational,...

Great Alne Primary School


The old railway station, built on the Great Western Railway
Great Western Railway
The Great Western Railway was a British railway company that linked London with the south-west and west of England and most of Wales. It was founded in 1833, received its enabling Act of Parliament in 1835 and ran its first trains in 1838...

branch-line from Bearley to Alcester opened in 1876 but is now converted to a residential dwelling. The station sat on the GWR's Alcester Branch linking their Hatton - Stratford Branch with the now defunct Midland Railway's Gloucester Loop line South of Redditch. The line closed to passengers in 1917 only to reopen between 1922/3 but stopping again in 1939 for passenger use, apart from workers' trains to the nearby Castle Maudslay Motor Company's works from Birmingham. The line closed completely in 1951 with lifting of the track taking place shortly afterwards.http://www.railaroundbirmingham.co.uk/Stations/great_alne.php/