Hordle is situated between the Solent coast and the borders of the New Forest and, although the present civil parish is somewhat smaller than the 3,854 acres it used to contain, its north-south boundaries remain much as they have always been. The first mention of Hordle is in the Domesday Book (1086) and its church is recorded in the cartulary of Christchurch Priory early in the twelfth century. The soils of the parish are based mainly on well drained gravels to the south and clayey loams to the north: the character of the parish is agricultural, although in times past a few salterns were operated on the coast. The distribution of dwellings has apparently always been of a scattered nature, grouping into several hamlets such as Tiptoe to the north and Taddiford to the south. There is some evidence that the main centre of population moved northwards, away from the coast, in the eighteenth century and, in order to meet this change, the ancient parish church was demolished in 1830 and moved to Downton Common, two miles to the north.
After about 1920 considerable infilling took place in the parish and this accelerated in the 1950s and 60s leading to a much increased population that largely seeks its livelihood in the neighbouring towns of Lymington and New Milton. The parish population in 1801 was 446 and by 1931 this had increased by a thousand and it has gone on growing ever since.
There was no school in the parish until 1860 and there are no endowed charities. Hordle today, despite considerable growth, still manages to retain its rural character helped by the green belts that separate it from the adjoining parishes.
Further information on attractions to discover in the area and other interesting villages to visit is available. For information on public services for Hordle please take a look at the Lymington local pages.