Maps & Travels
Towns & Villages
Castles & Houses
Odds & Ends
and Easthampstead: Hiding Places of Holy
Priests & Highwaymen
- In the Iron Age, people lived in a big hillfort near Bracknell
called Caesar's Camp. When the Romans arrived, they set up a
small town nearby. This is called Wickham Bushes but no-one lives there now.
- In Saxon times, Bracknell was a wild and lonely place in the middle
of Windsor Forest. Bracknell means
'Bracken covered Hiding Place'. It was probably a secret place for
- For many centuries, few people lived in Bracknell. It was a tiny
village with just a manor house and a pub called the Hind's Head. A
hind is a type of deer.
- Easthampstead was an important place though. The Saxon Kings of
Wessex are said to have had a palace there.
- One legend says King Oswald
(up North) visited King Cunegils of
Wessex at Easthampstead. He persuaded him to give up being a pagan and
become a Christian instead.
- In Norman times, King William the Conqueror may have built a wooden castle at
Wooden Hill. There is still a big mound or 'motte' for a big
tower there, but some people think it's just a prehistoric burial
- In Medieval times, the Kings of England liked to stay at
Easthampstead Park when they were hunting in Windsor Forest.
- When King Henry VIII divorced Catherine of
Aragon, she came to stay
at Easthampstead Park. When the later Tudor Kings and Queens were reforming
the Church in England, Catholic priests used to hide from their
soldiers at the Old Manor in Bracknell.
- In Georgian times, Highwaymen liked to hang out in Bracknell. One
was called the 'Golden Farmer' because he only took gold from his
victims, never jewels. When he was
caught and executed, his dead body was hung up on Bagshot Heath! Some
people say this was next to a pub in Easthampstead (but it was
probably in Bagshot). One old story says Dick
Turpin liked to drink at the Hind's Head pub next to Bracknell Old
- The 'Wokingham Blacks' used to meet at Caesar's Camp. They were a
gang a violent criminals. The King's soldiers had a battle with them
- Bracknell had grown into a small market town. In the 1960s, it was
almost completely rebuilt as a 'New Town'. It is now very large, is
full of high-tech companies and
has lots of estates where people live.
Click to Find out about Estates in