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Removals and storage in Sherborne, Dorset

Pitmans offer house removals and commercial removals in Sherborne, Dorset, with specialist packing services for antiques and fine art. Whether it’s a full house move or a single item, within the UK or across Europe, we offer a professional, safe and friendly service with full insurance, giving you peace of mind throughout the process.

Sherborne: A potted history

Sherborne is a market town and civil parish sited on the River Yeo, on the edge of the Blackmore Vale, six miles east of Yeovil. The A30 runs through the town. In the 2011 census the population of Sherborne parish and the two electoral wards was 9,523. 28.7% of the population is aged 65 or older.

Sherborne’s historic buildings include Sherborne Abbey, its manor house, independent schools, and two castles: the ruins of a 12th-century fortified palace and the 16th-century mansion known as Sherborne Castle built by Sir Walter Raleigh. Much of the old town, including the abbey and many medieval and Georgian buildings, is built from distinctive ochre-coloured ham stone.

The town is served by Sherborne railway station.

The town was named scir burne by the Saxon inhabitants, a name meaning “clear stream” and is referred to as such in the Domesday book.

Sherborne was made the capital of Wessex, one of the seven Saxon kingdoms of England, and King Alfred’s elder brothers King Ethelbert and King Ethelbald are buried in the abbey. In 705 the diocese was split between Sherborne and Winchester, and King Ine founded an abbey for St Aldhelm, the first bishop of Sherborne. In 933, King Æthelstan granted land at Sherborne to the nuns of Sherborne Abbey under the condition that they would recite the Psalter once a year on All Saints’ day and say prayers for the king. The bishop’s seat was moved to Old Sarum in 1075 and the church at Sherborne became a Benedictine monastery. In the 15th century the church was burnt down during tensions between the town and the monastery, and rebuilt between 1425 and 1504 incorporating some of the Norman structure remains. In 1539 the monastery was bought by Sir John Horsey and became a conventional church. Sherborne was the centre of a hundred of the same name for many centuries.

In the 12th century Roger de Caen, Bishop of Salisbury and Chancellor of England, built a fortified palace in Sherborne. The palace was destroyed in 1645 by General Fairfax, and its ruins are owned by English Heritage.

There has been a school in Sherborne since the time of King Alfred, who was educated there. The school was re-founded in 1550 as King Edward’s grammar school, using some of the old abbey buildings, though it is now known simply as Sherborne School. The school remains one of the top independent schools in Britain, with alumni such as Alan Turing, Jeremy Irons, Chris Martin, John le Carré and John Cowper Powys.

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Other notable historic buildings in the town include the almshouses of saints John the Baptist and John the Evangelist, founded in 1438 and expanded in the Victorian era in indistinguishable medieval style architecture; the conduit, hospice of St Julian, and Lord Digby school, now known as Sherborne House (designed by Benjamin Bastard).

There are 378 listed buildings within the town and 23 in Castleton (considered to be an inclusion of Sherborne), totalling 401, including 14 Grade I listed buildings and 21 Grade II* listed buildings.

The town has for centuries hosted an annual street fair, Pack Monday Fair, starting on the Monday following 10 October (Old Michaelmas Day). Originally an agricultural fair, it is now devoted to stalls, sideshows and a funfair.

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