Chaddesley’s Origins

The village of Chaddesley Corbett is an ancient settlement with a prehistoric buriel mound and traces of a Roman road. Originally known as Chaddesley the name is thought to mean "Ceadda's clearing in the wood" and is first mentioned in a Saxon Charter of 816 when the land was given to the Bishop of Worcester in return for hospitality to the King of Mercia and his men. It is mentioned in the Domesday Book as belonging to a Saxon Noblewoman - and had two priests,  several corn mills, a population as large as Kidderminster and two saltpans in Droitwich for it's own use. After the Norman Conquest the Manor of Chaddesley was owned by the Corbett family who added their name to it’s title.  Later, church lands passed to the Earldom of Warwick and, eventually, to the Throckmortons of Coughton Court.


St. Cassian’s Font circa. 1160

St Cassian’s chalice shaped baptism font is approaching its 900th birthday, as experts have dated it to around 1160. It is arguably the most important treasure in our parish church and one that those interested in its kind are eager to see. It is recognised as a product of The Herefordshire School of Romanesque Sculpture which flourished from the late 11th to the late 12th century. This outstanding piece of Norman sculpture has been attributed to the Chief Master of the Herefordshire School as it is so well executed. Examples of the Herefordshire School can be found well to the north of that county and having an example in Chaddesley may be explained by the fact that this church was granted to Tewkesbury Abbey in 1114. It may have been commissioned by Richard Folliott, resident Lord of the Manor in the mid-12th century. The font’s decoration is typical of the school. The five intertwined dragons are Anglo-Saxon inspired and represent the evil forces which can be overcome by baptism. The rest of the interlaced decoration derives from Celtic and Southern European symbols widely used at this time. The font has occupied several positions in the church. It is shown centrally between the north and south doors in a plan of 1800 and by the second northern nave pillar in 1846 which may explain the local tradition that it was concealed in one of the pillars. Sylvia Beardshaw _______________________________________________________________

Chaddesley - One Hundred Years Ago - June 1919

June   7th   The   cricketers   entertained   Bromsgrove   at   home   last   Saturday,   and the   home   team   surprised   the   “knowing   ones”   by   overwhelming   the   visitors   in every    department    of    the    game.    The    Millward    Brothers    made    hay    of    the Bromsgrove   bowling,   Harry   scoring   41   and   Fred   33,   and   Tom   Davis   followed   up with   a   useful   20.   After   Chaddesley   were   out   for   135,   Tom   Davis   and   Fred Millward   started   the   attack   with   the   ball,   the   former   securing   four   wickets   for 13,   and   the   latter   5   wickets   for   14   runs.   With   one   man   run   out   the   visitors were   all   disposed   of   for   33.   The   Bromsgrove   team,   no   doubt,   felt   they   were caught   napping,   and   now   are   eagerly   awaiting   the   date   when   Chaddesley returns their visit. An   attempt   is   really   being   made   to   revive   the   ancient   Chaddesley   Wake. A   committee   is   already   at   work   and   if   it   meets   with   any   luck,   we   may   expect   to see   the   old   holiday   once   more   restored,   with   all   its   pleasant   re-unions,   and quaint old customs. The   War   Memorial   Committee   are   most   anxious   not   to   have   the   names of   our   heroes   mis-spelt   on   the   stone   panels   of   the   Memorial.   The   committee appeal   to   the   relatives   of   the   fallen   brave   to   give   assistance   in   securing   the accuracy of every name. June    14th     Elvin    May,    of    Cakebole,    was    badly    kicked    by    a    horse    whilst following   his   employment   at   Bradford   House   last   week.   He   received   injuries   to his   head   and   shoulder   but   was   able   to   reach   home   without   assistance.   He   was attended by Dr Fitch, and is now making good progress towards recovery. On    Monday    the    cricketers    journeyed    to    Bromsgrove    where    it    was reported   a   formidable   array   of   talent   awaited   them   to   avenge   a   defeat   suffered recently.   The   ground   was   in   excellent   condition,   and   a   splendid   wicket   had been   prepared.   Contrary   to   expectations,   the   Bromsgrove   batting   proved   of little   use   against   the   Chaddesley   bowling   and   the   whole   team   was   out   for   55, Fred   Millward   securing   six   wickets   for   18   runs.   Chaddesley   started   their   innings disastrously.   Seven   good   wickets   going   down   with   only   25   runs   on   the   board. Then   a   good   stand   was   made   by   Fred   Sears   and   Will   Jones,   and   when   they parted,   the   visitors   only   required   two   runs   to   win.   Eventually   Chaddesley   men were all out for 61; a very close shave, but a very welcome victory. June   21st    Last   Saturday   was   “Rose   Day”   at   Chaddesley   for   the   benefit   of Kidderminster   Infirmary,   and   a   record   was   established   as   a   total   of   £9   1s   0d was   collected.   Organisation   was   the   secret.   Mrs   Dennis   Fitch   was   assisted   by   a well-organised   bevy   of   ladies   who   tapped   all   sources   of   income   without   any overlapping.   The   collectors   were   Misses   E   Chambers,   R   Dickinson,   B   Groom,   E Johnson, A Meredith, E Perrins, W Taylor, and E Wheeler. There   are   some   very   awkward   corners   around   Chaddesley,   yet   we   seem to   bear   charmed   lives,   and   scarcely   ever   have   bad   accidents.   There   have however   been   several   minor   accidents   during   the   past   few   days.   One   evening Mrs   May   Hancox   cycling   across   the   southern   bend   of   the   village   had   a   few yards   on   the   mudguard   of   the   Doctor’s   motor,   which   was   slowly   turning   into the   village.   On   Sunday   evening   at   the   same   spot,   a   motor   cyclist   with   side-car had   his   steering   gear   fail   and   crashed   into   the   Vicarage   gate.   About   the   same time,   I   hear   that   Mr   Timmis   had   a   fly   in   his   eye   at   Red   Cross,   with   inconvenient results   to   his   motor   bike   and   startling   exercise   for   the   lady   occupying   the   back seat.   In   every   case   we   are   glad   to   learn,   no   serious   results   occurred   to   cyclists or passengers, but as regards the machines and the fly it was bad for both. June   28th    A   meeting   was   held   of   the   Talbot   Bowling   Club   on   Saturday   last. There   was   a   large   attendance.   With   the   prospect   of   Peace   it   was   decided   to   re- open   the   club   competitions,   which   have   remained   in   abeyance   since   1915. About    60    members    have    joined.    The    secretary,    Mr    Sayers,    has    obtained sufficient gifts for prizes to enable two club competitions to be started at once. Congratulations    to    Mr    Page,    of    Swancote,    on    having    come    safely through   the   surgical   operation   on   Sunday   last.   We   all   hope   he   will   now   be accorded relief and enjoy many years of health and strength. Bromsgrove   Fair   proved   more   magnetic   than   ever   to   country   folk,   and there   was   quite   a   pilgrimage   from   Chaddesley.   Considerable   disappointment was   caused   to   many   by   the   buses   being   unable   to   cope   with   the   traffic,   many people   being   obliged   to   patronise   “Walker’s   Bus”.   Returning   from   the   fair,   Mr John   Jordan   met   with   an   awkward   accident.   The   horse   he   was   riding,   reared, and   fell   upon   the   rider.   Mr   Jordon   received   first   aid   from   Dr   Fitch   and   was conveyed    home.    He    is    still    suffering    considerable    pain,    but    hopes    are entertained for his early recovery, and he is reported not seriously injured. (A selection copied from Kidderminster Shuttle by CC Local History Society) It’s   an   interesting   game   to   play   -   spotting   how   many   family   names   are   still prevalent in Chaddesley, to this day.

Contemporary History

Chaddesley Woods in Chaddesley Corbett became a Nature Reserve in 1973 through the generosity of Mr. John Cadbury. The reserve consists of 53 hectares of native oak woodland and 47 hectares of recent plantations of  young hardwoods and softwoods - which were added to show how wild life conservation can be intergrated with modern commercial management. A "Jubilee Walk" was introduced in 1977 to mark the 25th anniversary of the Queen's accession to the throne.  The walk is marked by yellow arrows - which indicate public rights of way - and by white arrows which indicate courtesy paths. There are Voluntary Wardens for the woods and the area is managed by the Nature Conservancy Council. The Woods are a special feature of the area and attract many visitors all through the year. Car parking by the roadside. Guard against thefts.
Chaddesley Corbett