Hampshire's local pages

Bishops Sutton

Bishop's Sutton was known as Sudtone at the time of the Domesday Survey, when it was held by Earl Eustace from the king. Eustace's grand-daughter Maud became the wife of King Stephen, so the manor reverted to the crown. In 1136 the king exchanged it with his brother Henry de Blois, Bishop of Alresford, after which it was called Sottone Bishop and later Sutton Episcopi. Henry de Blois built a palace for himself and future bishops in the meadows to the north of the church. Traces of the thick flint and mortar walls were visible until the early nineteenth century, and it is believed that the palace was destroyed during the Civil War of the seventeenth century. In the surrounding parkland traces of the bishop's kennels were noted many years ago, and documents mention the king's hounds being kept at Bishop's Sutton in the time of King John.

The manor of Bishop's Sutton remained in the possession of the bishops of Alresford until 1551, when Bishop Stephen Gardiner was deprived of his bishopric and the land became royal property. Queen Mary restored the manor to the bishop in 1558 but it was sold into private hands in 1647 during the Commonwealth period. After the restoration of the monarchy the land reverted to the bishops of Alresford. Sutton Common was enclosed in 1685 and divided amongst the copyhold and freehold tenants; a further 20 acres of common were freed from tithes and annexed to the vicarage of Bishop's Sutton, and the remainder of the common lands were enclosed by Act of Parliament in 1796.

Further information on attractions to discover in the area and other interesting villages to visit is available.  For information on public services for Bishops Sutton please take a look at the Alresford local pages.