You are hereHantsweb Home

Hampshire's local pages


Attractions and places to visit | Travel and visitor information

The Parish of Petersfield was enlarged in 1894 by the inclusion of parts of Buriton and Sheet Parishes. Petersfield is not mentioned by name in the Domesday Book as it was probably included with Mapledurham.

The town received a charter in the reign of Henry II whereby William, Earl of Gloucester, granted the burgesses of Petersfield all the liberties and customs enjoyed by the citizens of Winchester, including the right to have a merchant guild. Petersfield prospered as a market town and first sent members to Parliament in 1306-7 when two members were returned. The representation lapsed, however, but was restored in 1552-3.  The Reform Act of 1832 reduced the number of members to one and in 1885 the representation of Petersfield was merged in that of the County.

The cattle market at Petersfield gave rise to industries such as cloth manufacture and leather working in Tudor times.  The town became prosperous and in 1428 at least one corn-grinding mill had been converted to a fulling-mill for the preparation of cloth.  Tanning and other leather industries also flourished but the manufacture of cloth was the principal occupation in the Stuart period, employing over 1000 people in the reign of James I.  Both industries gradually waned towards the end of the seventeenth century, but Petersfield was still important as a market town and administrative centre.  Situated strategically at the junction of the London to Portsmouth and Winchester to Midhurst roads, Petersfield enjoyed a brisk trade in the coaching days.  No fewer than nine inns are listed in a rent roll of 1696-7, namely the White Hart, the Anchor, the Lion, the Half Moon, the Crown, the Swan, the Dragon, the Ship and the George. The importance of Petersfield was enhanced with the building of the railway in the nineteenth century, and today the town is the principal shopping and administrative centre for the surrounding countryside.

Attractions and Places to Visit

Ashford Chase - Considered one of Hampshire's most beautiful areas of woodland
Butser Ancient Farm - A re-creation of an Iron Age farm settlement from 2,000 years ago
Flora Twort Gallery - Images of Petersfield between the wars by local artist Flora Twort
Hollycombe Steam Fun Fairground
Old Winchester Hill, Droxford - A national nature reserve, with steep downland slopes, iron age hillfort and wonderful views.
Open Air Heated Swimming Pool
Petersfield Heath - out in the countryside in the middle of town
Queen Elizabeth Country Park - 1400 acres providing a contrast between dramatic downland and beautiful woodland
Stansted Park House - A moment's peace in the heart of the forest...
The Hangers Way - Queen Elizabeth Country Park to Alton
The Staunton Way - Queen Elizabeth Country Park to Langstone Harbour
The South Downs Way - Winchester to Eastbourne via Butser Hill
Uppark House - The Phoenix Rises!
Woolmer Forest - One of Britain's richest nature reserves, in the guardianship of the Army

Cinema, Theatre and Arts Centres in the South East Hampshire area.
Conference Venues in Petersfield

Travel Information for Visitors

Tourist and Other Information Sources

Local Tourist Information
Petersfield Library,
27 The Square,
Hampshire GU32 3HH
Telephone: (01730) 263451

Local Information Point
Petersfield Library LIP,
27 The Square,
Hampshire GU32 3HH
Telephone: (01730) 263451

Local Council
East Hampshire District Council,
Penns Places,
Hampshire GU31 4EX
Telephone: (01730) 266551

Parking in Petersfield

Public car park two minutes from the Central Car Park, behind the Waitrose Supermarket.  Other car parks available in a central location for the town.  The Tourist Information Centre is set in the local library which is in the towns' main square.


There is a very good selection of pubs and places to eat, all within easy walking distance of the town centre.

Access by Public Transport

Petersfield has a BR Station (service from Waterloo, Woking, Winchester, Portsmouth.  Public Bus Services operate to Petersfield from Winchester, Alton, Farnham and Portsmouth.