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Bromham is a village and civil parish in Bedfordshire, England, west of the town of Bedfordmarker. It is within commuting distance to London via Bedford railway stationmarker.

Notable features

It has a number of notable features including a flour watermill (Bromham Mill, now open to the public), a beautiful church, St Owen's, and a medieval bridge over the River Great Ousemarker that, until 1986, carried the main A428 road over the river on 26 arches. Fortunately for the bridge, and the rest of the village, it was bypassed.

The watermill is referred to in the Domesday Book of 1086 and the Vikings navigated the Great Ouse a long time ago.

Name

Bromham (Bruneham in Domesday) is probably the enclosed meadow on which the broom or the dyers weed grew. If so, the cultivation of much more than a thousand years since the name was given, has practically eradicated these plants.

Another theory as to the origin of the village's name is Bruna's homestead and was first recorded as Bruneham in the Domesday Book of 1086. Other variants including Bruham (1164-1302), Braham (1227), Bramham (1228), Brumham (1262-1287), Brunham (1276-1291), Brumbham (1276), Brynham (1276), Broham (1278), Bronham (1338), Broam (1360), Brounham (1361) and Burnham (1361). The modern spelling is first recorded in 1227.

Location

The Parish is for the greater part enclosed in a bend in the Ouse, and it touches the parishes of Oakleymarker, Biddenhammarker, Kempstonmarker, Stagsdenmarker, Stevingtonmarker and at its western point, Turveymarker. It is to the west of Bedford.

History

The land formed part of the Barony of Bedford held by the Beauchamps. After the battle of Evesham, in which John de Beauchamp fell fighting on the side of the Barons, the manor was held for a time by Prince Edward, but afterwards divided among the Beauchamp heirs female. Bromham afterwards passed successively into the hands of the Mowbrays, the Latimers, the Nevilles, the Passelowes, the Wildes, and the Dyves. Early in the eighteenth century, the manor was bought by Sir Thomas Trevor, who was afterwards created Lord Trevor, and whose mother was a daughter of John Hampden, the patriot. Three of his sons succeeded to the title. One of them – the third Lord Trevor married Sir Richard Steele's (Dick Steele) daughter; and another – the fourth Lord Trevor – inherited the Great Hampden Estate in Bucks, through his grandmother, and was created Viscount Hampden. The Trevors became connected through marriage with the Rice family (the Dynevor Rices) and at the death of the late Miss Rice Trevor the estate passed to the Wingfields.

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