The hidden history of Burnham - Eight facts you may not know about the village

The hidden history of Burnham - Eight facts you may not know about the village

Emma Billingham

The hidden history of Burnham -  Eight facts you may not know about the village

The historic market village of Burnham has had many changes and expansions in its history. Much of its history can still be seen around the village, with some buildings which have changed hands many times over the years still standing and road names symbolising their former uses.

The High Street still looks similar to how it was around 100 years ago, with the same length and many of the same buildings still standing, though their uses may have changed.

The old fire station in the High Street leading to Church Street

To celebrate Burnham's history, we have put together a round up of interesting historical facts around the village that you may not have previously known.

  • During World  War Two a house called Sunnycroft which still stands at the junction of Green Lane and Britwell Road was used as a prisoner of war camp for German soldiers. They were used as agricultural labourers locally.
  • The room above the bell tower which was built onto the in the Fire Station in the High Street in 1908 also served as the Parish Council Chambers and a library was run by volunteers on Tuesdays and Saturdays.
  • In 1940 the Red Lion pub in the High Street was demolished and then rebuilt to sit further back from the road as it is today.
  • In 1903 the Burnham Beeches railway station was built (now just Burnham Railway Station). It came in as part of the gradual development of the industrial estate. This was also when the first parade of stores appeared on Burnham Lane, which was then Windsor Lane.
German prisoners of war stayed in Sunnycroft in Green Lane

  • At the top of the High Street was Cleares’ House, which was the first purpose-built telephone exchange.
  • During the 1920s the Deverill’s school was at the end of the High Street in the Georgian buildings which are now houses. The school was run by Jessie, Eva, John and Harriet Deverill.
  • Burnham Park Academy in Opendale Road is built on the grounds of Priory Farm (also known as Lobjoit’s Farm). The farmhouse stood in Stomp Road opposite the entrance to the priory. It was there until 1964 when the school was built.
  • The Pusey family kept donkeys which were used to give rides to London day trippers who came to Burnham Beeches in the first half of the twentieth century.
Looking up the High Street with the Red Lion pub to your left which is now set back from the road
Research and pictures from Around Burnham from Old Photographs by Dorothy Blackman and Daphne Chevous.

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