History of the Hamlets of Binfield Parish
in the Royal County of Berkshire
by David Nash Ford
B I N F I E L D
H A M L E T S
This area of Binfield, now well
known for its "Mini Zoo", has a most
unusual name. It may have been named from the
murmurs of local baptists returning home from a
local chapel, or it may be related to prayers
said while beating the bounds.
The earliest version of the name
is Pullingbere. This may be Phol-Bearo
meaning "Balder's Sacred Grove". Balder
was the son of Woden and has been identified with
the Celtic Beli. Balder was mostly worshipped in
Swabia, and a reference in a White Waltham Saxon
charter relating to "Swabian's Hollow"
in the general area may back up this idea.
Billingbear Park, home of the Neville Lords
Braybrooke, stands just over the parish boundary
below Shurlock Row in Waltham St.Lawrence parish.
The Farley Wood estate was built
on the site of Farley Copse Farm in 1989. The
roads are all named after old Binfield families.
Here is also Farley Hall, a beautiful and
imposing Victorian mansion, now one of the homes
of British Telecom. Strangely, their rivals,
Cable and Wireless, are not far away surrounding
Farley Moor Lake (a name first recorded in the
reign of James I) where you can see much
waterlife: Ducks, Swans, Moorhen, Coots, Heron,
Egyptian Geese, Canadian Geese and Great Crested
Grebe. The fish are also very large and the wide
array of wild flowers particularly lovely in the
Spring. This time of year sometimes brings a
flock of Waxwings to the area. Common in East
Anglia, you don't often see them in the south.
The place is named after the Pope
family who made quite an impression on the area.
Pope's Manor was the home of a retired Roman
Catholic linen-draper, the father of the famous
writer, Alexander Pope who also lived there from
1700 until 1716. His father constantly encouraged
Pope to write verse and it was here that he wrote
his famous Rape of the Lock. He described
the house as:
house with trees a-row
And like its master, very low.
Temple Park is a very new housing
estate built around Park Farm, the Home Farm of the old
Binfield Manor estate. The present house was
built by the Prime Minister, William Pitt
the Elder, Earl of Chatham, in 1754 (See Binfield).
The house, and no doubt the parkland too, has
seen many literary and artistic visitors in its
time. The Park is now best known for its Blue
Mountain Golf Club. The adjoining Jock's Lane has
a reputation for being haunted, but by whom or
what is unclear.
See also Binfield Village