England's Past for Everyone Wiltshire


The Wiltshire project, focused on the west Wiltshire parish of Codford (an amalgam of the ancient parishes of Codford St Mary, Codford St Peter and Ashton Gifford), and was the first of the 15 projects to be completed and the first of the paperback series to be published by Phillimore. Proposed as a project for an HLF application as early as 2000, the Codford project acted as the pilot for the England’s Past for Everyone HLF application, granted in 2005.

The delicate funding situation in Wiltshire, namely the requirement for the Victoria County History to turn its attention to West Wiltshire and the desire within the county for the continued production of parish histories, led to the selection of Codford, a small village in the Wylye Valley as the focus of the pilot project. Mentioned in Domesday Book and containing within the parish, prehistoric archaeology, an intricate carved Anglo-Saxon stone, two parish churches and the sites of substantial 20th century military camps, Codford offered the opportunity to generate a varied and interesting parish history which introduced the detailed research approach of the Victoria County History to a wider audience.

In 2002, VCH Wiltshire Assistant Editor Carrie Smith, began the research into a parish history of Codford, while local historian John Chandler began producing material for Key Stage 1 and 2 learning, and coordinating a local history group of volunteers. Despite a hiatus between 2003 and 2005 while the HLF application for the EPE project was being processed (during which time Carrie Smith moved on to a n