Friends of Kingsbury Water Park 

The name Kingsbury (Chinesberie) derives from two Anglo-Saxon elements, 'chines' & 'burh'. 'Burh' meaning a defended or fortified site; whilst 'chines' meaning king or royal.

The parish of Kingsbury was at one time the sixth largest in the country, comprising the hamlets of Hurley, Woodend, Whateley, Slateley, Haloughton, Plumpton, Kimberley, Cliff, Dosthill & Drakenage.

When William I invaded England in 1066, the most important settlements in the area were Coleshill, Hampton-in-Arden & Kingsbury. Kingsbury was valued as a manor in the Domesday Book & was held by Lady Godiva.




Kingsbury parish church of St. Peter and St. Paul.

The first stone church was instigated by Osbert de Arden, a grandson of Countess Godiva, in 1150, and was a simple nave with a square chancel. A Saxon building had probably stood on the site since about 950 AD. Two aisles were added in c.1180, followed by the tower towards the end of the 13th century. During the 14th century the greatest changes took place; the chancel was doubled, the aisles widened the Bracebridge Chapel and Vestry were built. During the 17th century the tower was completely rebuilt to its present height.



Kingsbury Hall.

The present Hall dates from the 15th century; but it is known some form of structure has occupied the site since the 9th century. As the name of Kingsbury implies, the first building was a royal hunting lodge, probably constructed from wood. It would have had a wooden palisade around it, this being replaced with stone during the 14th century, and this is the curtain wall seen today.

The Hall, as it now stands, has 4 main areas, divided into 3 floors.





The Mill.

The Mill Wheels have been turning since before the Norman Conquest. Even in those early days the meadows around flooded during springtime. The present mill buildings date back to 1747, throughout time the mill has adapted from grinding corn to milling gun-barrels for the Duke of Wellington at Waterloo & to making munitions for World War I. These new products needed better transport, so a toll bridge was built by local subscription in 1783. This bridge was washed away by the floods of 1982.


 Kingsbury School.

  There has been a school in Kingsbury for over 300 years. In 1650 a school was operating in Bracebridge Chapel. In 1686 Thomas Coton endowed a school and gave the Teachers House for this purpose. In 1719 John Cope was granted use of the chapel for a Free School, whilst the main school became an Elementary School, children leaving at 9 to 11 years old.

A new 'Board School' was built in 1884 after the passing of the Elementary Education Act. The new secondary school was built in 1957 & a junior school was built next to it in 1965, which meant the original Board School became the Infant Department till 1980, when the children moved to Bromage Avenue.

 Teachers House

Only the children of the rich could afford to be educated, but in 1686 all this changed for the village. Thomas Coton, a wealthy, local landowner from nearby Cotonbridge, as an act of charity, made provision in his will for both a house and the funds to educate the poor children of Kingsbury, Nether Whitacre and Marston. A master was employed to teach the boys 'reading, writing and Latin' while the girls were merely taught reading by a darne. Both teachers had to be 'sober, honest, religious and Protestant'. The school children and the master all shared the same house with the schoolroom in one of the downstairs rooms.
The room to the right of the front door was the old school room.

Contact us at
Next Friends Meeting:
Wednesday, April 22nd 2020; 7 pm
Meet at The Education Centre of the Water Park                                                            
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