The first written evidence of Abbots Leigh – or Leigh as it was then known – is found in the Domesday Book. For over a thousand years since then the village lived as a Manor through the medieval age and beyond into the testate ownership of the Nortons and the Miles. More widespread ownership came with the sale of the estate in 1915 and in the last hundred years Abbots Leigh has seen growth and change. Nevertheless a rich history remains in its woods and fields, in its buildings, and in a sense of community which, however strong the links with Bristol and the surrounding Somerset, maintains an identity which echoes its history and heritage.
Following the completion of the Lower Graveyard map, the Leigh Court exhibition and the Centennial Record, the Heritage Group will soon be planning its activities for 1916. New members are most welcome, as are suggestions for heritage workshops, speakers from other local history groups, more projects in Abbots Leigh, or any other ideas.
The History of Church Road
In June 2018 more than thirty villagers joined in a heritage walk along Church Road. The fact-sheet produced for the walk is a comprehensive history of the road, its buildings and many of the former residents and provides an excellent overview of how this key road has changed over almost two hundred years.
The fact sheet is available for download here. It is a little dated since there have been changes in the last two years, but there may be some longstanding residents who missed getting a copy at the time, and of course there will be new residents who might like to have a copy now. If you would like a hard copy please email Di Stewart.