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Village hall

Semington (Wiltshire)

Semington shown within Wiltshire
Population 830 (2001 census)[1]
OS grid reference ST8960
Parish Semington
District West Wiltshire
Shire county Wiltshire
Region South West
Constituent country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town Trowbridge
Postcode district BA14
Dialling code 01380 (Keevil)
Police Wiltshire
Fire Wiltshire
Ambulance Great Western
European Parliament South West England
UK Parliament Chippenham (c. 2009)
Westbury (2005)
List of places: UKEnglandWiltshire

Coordinates: 51°20'35?N 2°09'04?W? / ?51.343, -2.151

Semington is a medium-sized village in West Wiltshire, England. It features 2 locks on the Kennet and Avon Canal, and is the start of the disused Wilts and Berks Canal. Its 2001 population was 830, and it is located 3 miles (5 km) from Melksham and 4 miles (7 km) from Trowbridge.

Semington civil parish includes the hamlets of Littlemarsh and Littleton.[2]


[edit] Geography

Within the village there are around 500 houses, a primary school, a village hall, public tennis courts and a park for children. For the school's most recent Ofsted report, click on St George's . The village has its own website where some detail of events in the village can be found – although these are not always up to date. Minutes of parish council meetings are eventually displayed here, and there is a rumour that the PC itself will soon embrace the digital age.

Littlemarsh is located to the south of Semington, along the old course of A350 road. Littleton isn't populated anymore, and the only area currently designated as belonging to Littleton is the roundabout at the A350 and A361 road crossing.

[edit] History

Several moorings and a narrow boat rental business on the Kennet and Avon canal attract frequent pleasure craft traffic
Several moorings and a narrow boat rental business on the Kennet and Avon canal attract frequent pleasure craft traffic

[edit] Canals

The Kennet and Avon Canal crosses marshy ground on an embankment on the northern edge of the village.

The two Semington locks were built between 1718 and 1723 under the supervision of the engineer John Hore of Newbury and Quager of Hilperton and this stretch of the canal is now administered by British Waterways. They have a combined rise/fall of 16 ft 1 in (4.9 m).[3] The two locks at Semington are known as Buckley's (numbered 15) and Barrett's (16).[4]

Adjacent to the locks is the point at which the disused Wilts and Berks Canal joined the Kennet and Avon, and a group of determined enthusiasts are bent on restoring this canal to its former glory. East of the locks, the canal travels across the 2004 Semington Aqueduct, built to allow the A350 road to bypass Semington village. Another aqueduct carries the canal over Semington Brook.[5]

The canal, towpath and adjacent hedges are good for wildlife and there have been recent sightings (August 2007) of watervoles (arvicola terrestris).[6]

[edit] World War II

During the Second World War, Semington lay on GHQ Line which followed the path of the canal. Semington was designated as a centre of resistance: extensive anti-tank ditches were constructed to the east, south, and west of the village, these were overlooked by a number of pillboxes. The defences were constructed as a part of British anti-invasion preparations.[7]

[edit] Culture

The village has the small mediæval St George's church, which is a grade II listed building.[8] with a garden fête held every summer in the gardens of the manor house.[9]

[edit] Economy

Somerset Arms
Somerset Arms

Semington has a pub, the Somerset Arms,[10] which is popular with canal travellers, and a number of other small businesses. 1 km to the north of the village lies the ever-expanding Hampton Park West business park, which houses the large corporate headquarters of companies such as G-Plan, Avon Rubber plc and a large Wiltshire Police operations centre.

The hamlet of Littlemarsh belongs to Semington parish
The hamlet of Littlemarsh belongs to Semington parish

[edit] Notable residents

[edit] See also

[edit] References

[edit] Notes

  1. , Wiltshire Community History Semington Census Information. Retrieved on October 23, 2006.
  2. ,, Semington Civil Parish boundary on Ordnance Survey 1:50 000 colour raster layer. Retrieved on October 23, 2006.
  3. , Pearson, Michael (2003). Kennet & Avon Middle Thames:Pearson's Canal Companion. Rugby: Central Waterways Supplies. ISBN 0-907864-97-X. 
  4. , Allsop, Niall (1987). The Kennet & Avon Canal. Bath: Millstream Book. ISBN 0-948975-15-6. 
  5. , Semington Aqueduct. Images of England. Retrieved on 2006-10-25.
  6. , Watervoles. UK Biodiversity Action Plan. Retrieved on 2007-03-17.
  7. , Foot, 2006, p291-296.
  8. , Church of St. George. Images of England. Retrieved on 2006-10-25.
  9. , Manor House. Images of England. Retrieved on 2006-10-25.
  10. , Somerset Arms. Images of England. Retrieved on 2006-10-25.

[edit] General references

  • Foot, William (2006). Beaches, fields, streets, and hills ... the anti-invasion landscapes of England, 1940. Council for British Archaeology. ISBN 1-902771-53-2. 

[edit] External links

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(Source: Wikipedia)
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