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Village History

The village has a large archive of historical ephemera as well as a lot of original research. Items in red can be downloaded.

1887Queen Victoria JubileeCopies of the original documents detailing the event
1957Melways HatcheryCopy of the catalogue of sale of plant and stock-in-trade dated 2nd October 1957
1977Silver Jubilee and Photograph AlbumOriginal photographs and other items relating to the event
1996The Olde HouseA History of the house dating back to 1700 compiled by Chris Giles and an undated architectural sketch
2000Millennium Street Party Photograph AlbumOriginal photographs of the event
2002Calor Gas “Village of the Year” Presentation1993 and 1996: Newspaper cuttings and photographs relating to the village winning the Dorset “Best Village of the Year” competition’ 2002: Presentation of the village entry into the national “Village of the Year” competition representing Dorset. Hard copy only
2002Golden Jubilee Photograph AlbumComprehensive record and original documents of the event
2004Child Okeford & Hanford Parish PlanDigital and Hard copies
2007Child Okeford Village Design StatementDigital and Hard copies
2014Village DirectoryCopies from 2002, 2005, 2007 & 2014
2017British History On LineCopies of the Child Okeford section

The Child Okeford Union Benefit Society Banner.

Comprehensive file including original photographs. An account of the various ‘Friendly’ societies in the village can be found here We-Unite-to-assist-one-another.pdf
2017In 1845 the remaining common land of Child Okeford was ‘inclosed’ [their word].

A detailed analysis of the award can be found here Notes-on-the-enclosure-of-common-land-in-Child-Okeford.pdf
2017Footpaths & BridlewaysComprehensive file of maps and records dating back to 1841

Comprehensive file and photographs on the history of the bridge.
A history of the bridge can be found here Hayward-Bridges.pdf

In 2016 Hayward Bridge was replaced for the umpteenth time in it’s history. Dorset Council took a time lapse video of its replacement which can be seen here.
2017Manors of Child OkefordA paper detailing the history of the village from 1086

A paper looking into the names of the village and the surrounding fields may be downloaded here “What’s in a name ?”
2017Old Post Office CottageA paper on the history of the property
2018Domesday BookA paper on the village’s entry in the Domesday book.
2018Emigration to AustraliaIn 1848 some 30 villagers from Child Okeford abandoned a life of poverty and emigrated to Australia under the auspices of the Blandford Colonisation Society. This is their story.
2018Samuel Arnold Child Okeford’s Aussie Pioneer.The article above on Emigration to Australia was posted on the village website and a reader in Australia kindly took up the story of one man and his life their.

Child Okeford Brickworks
A short history of the brickworks at Gold Hill. The archive also has an original drainage pipe manufactured at the brickworks

How was it that the tail fin from a German bomber was found in one of Markstone cottages?
Sadly we never found the answer ?
2020Home Guard & The Secret Auxiliary UnitA history of these units from Child Okeford in the Second World War

The Graf Zeppelin over Hanford
Perhaps the most extraordinary picture of Child Okeford, or more accurately Hanford, in the archive. This is an account of the flight of the Graf Zeppelin’s tour of Britain and it’s appearance at Hanford.
2020 Raft Race
An incomplete record of this charity race run on the river Stour

A video taken by Tony Ward of the event in 1991 can be seen on YouTube – here.
2021HanfordComprehensive file of articles, cuttings, photos and data
2022Platinum Jubilee Celebrations

Video of the celebrations and Village photo.

80 page book looking back at the village’s celebrations of royal events from 1887 to 2022

The book can be read and downloaded from here