back search


Hampshire's local pages


Overton is mentioned in 909 in a grant of land by King Edward to Frithstan, Bishop of Winchester. This grant was later confirmed by King Edgar, and the manor was still held by the bishop at the time of the Domesday Survey. The early village of Overton was situated on the north bank of the River Test, and in the early thirteenth century an entirely new town was planned by Bishop de Lucy of Winchester on the south side of the river. New Alresford is a parallel example of a new town founded by the bishop to the south of an existing village. Overton "new town" is mentioned in a charter of 1218 granting a market to the bishop, and in 1246 Henry III granted a fair to the town. The streets were laid out in a grid pattern, and the principal market street was Winchester Street.

The bishops of Winchester continued to be lords of the manor of Overton, but by the early seventeenth century the original mediaeval village around the church had decayed and disappeared, leaving only the thirteenth century new town, still known as Overton. In 1649 the manor was sold to Thomas Andrew, but at the Restoration the property reverted to the bishopric and ultimately passed to the Ecclesiastical Commissioners.

The twelfth century Church of St Mary was restored in 1853 and 1897, and the tower was rebuilt in 1909. There are remains of an eleventh or twelfth century chapel at Quidhampton Farm.

In the eighteenth century the manufacture of silk was an important local industry, and the nearby paper mill employs many inhabitants of Overton and its hinterland.

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


In this section…