The Odiham Society
Established 1978                                                                            Registered Charity No. 277285

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The Odiham Society Plaque Project

In May 2010, The Odiham Society Plaque Project came into being as a result of an idea put forward by former Chairman, Ted Johns. Since then, the project has been developed with the aim of putting plaques on to those houses, buildings and places in Odiham and North Warnborough which have historical or architectural merit. The Society wishes to celebrate the Parish’s past and bring it to the attention and knowledge of far more people, residents and visitors alike. Once the project is well under way and we have awarded a reasonable number of plaques, we aim to create a Heritage Trail around them to add to our ‘historic walks’ programme.

The buildings and places being considered for this award can be classified under several headings and examples are given for each below.

  • Public buildings – such as The Pest House and The Old Court Almshouses

  • Commercial buildings – such as The Cross Barn and The George Hotel

  • Private houses – such as Monk’s Cottage and Castlebridge Cottages

  • Private houses – to commemorate the lives of former, significant residents
    for example, the homes of two VCs, Manley James (gallantry awards in WW1 and WW2) and Robert   Addison (one of only four Chaplains to receive the VC in WW1)

  • 'Open spaces’ – such as The Bury

We have now refined the process of making these awards. However, the business is not cheap as the total cost of each sign is upward of £325. The whole process is very time-consuming and entails consulting with numerous bodies since, by the very nature of what the Society is doing, the plaques will be sited in sensitive areas subject to conservation and listed building restrictions. The consent of the owner of each building is also required.

The Bridewell

Picture from ‘The Bridewell in The Bury, Odiham’ publication
Copyright © The Odiham Society 2003

A plaque already exists on the Bridewell in The Bury.  This was awarded in July 2003 following the successful application for a grant from Awards for All – Lottery Grants for Local Groups.  This plaque outlines the history of the building, from its initial purpose as a jail in 1742 and subsequent uses as a Police Station (1847-1972) and a Magistrates Court (1882-1970).  This history is described in more detail in our leaflet, The Bridewell in The Bury, Odiham (see our Publications page for details).

Monk's Cottage

Monk's Cottage

Planning permission was received to affix a plaque to the front of Monk’s Cottage, No. 111 High Street, Odiham, our first new award.

The unveiling of this new plaque was performed by our Chairman, John Champion, on 28th March 2012.

This Grade II listed building has been dendro-dated to c.1300. Many of its structural elements indicate that it was a cross-wing to a later medieval hall, which, in turn, was part of a merchant’s house and a rare example in Hampshire of a high quality town house. More details can be found in ‘Hampshire Houses, 1250-1700, Their Dating & Development’, 2003, by Edward Roberts et al. 

The unveiling of our new plaque

The George Hotel

The unveiling of our second two plaques awarded to The George Hotel, a Grade II* listed building also in the High Street, took place on 16th June 2012.

The George Hotel (photo reproduced by kind permission of Peter and Moira Kelsey)

Two plaques, as the Veterinary College also wish to commemorate their beginnings in Odiham with a plaque of their own. On the 16th May 1783 the first meeting of The Odiham Agricultural Society took place at the George Inn, Odiham ‘for the purpose of establishing a society for the encouraging of agriculture and industry in the said town and its neighbourhood’
¹.  It was from this Society of local landowners and men of learning that the idea of giving young farriers a “scientific education” to improve the treatment of sick animals evolved into a plan for the creation of a veterinary profession. This plan led directly to the establishment of the Veterinary College in Camden Town in 1791².The Veterinary College will be celebrating the award of their plaque at the George on 16th June 2012.

With structural elements and features dating from the 15th, 16th and 18th centuries, the George has been the home of many functions over time. It was licensed as a Commercial Inn in 1547. Petty Sessions were held in the building fortnightly until the Court House was added to the Police Station in 1882 and the Excise and Inland Revenue Office operated from here during the second half of the 19th century.


¹ The Odiham Agricultural Society’s original hand written minute book covering the period 1783 – 1796 (16494-1001), held by the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons.
² The Veterinary History Society website, The Granville Penn Press,
³  'Odiham High Street: an Itinerary’, 1988, Millard, Sheila (ed), The Odiham Society, Odiham 

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