Piddletrenthide VillageDorchester
Dorset DT12



Piddletrenthide is a pretty village of mainly thatched stone houses, eight miles (13km) north of Dorchester and 4 miles (6.5km) east of Cerne Abbas in west Dorset. The village straggles along the B3143 road.

Unique Village Name
The Village gets its unique name from a combination of ‘Piddle’ meaning a stream of clear water, which runs through the village; the French word trente for thirty, and hide, the Norman measurement for land. In William the Conqueror’s Domesday Book, the village on the Piddle was assessed at thirty hides thus giving the village its quaint name of Piddletrenthide.
Piddletrenthide has a long history. It is almost certain that Bronze Age man occupied the valley as some Bronze Age mounds or barrows can be seen in local fields.
Then came the Romans and it appears that a Roman mosaic pavement was found in the grounds of the Manor House about 1740. After the Romans came the Saxon settlers.
Village divided into Three Tithings
Piddletrenthide is an elongated village which in Saxon times was divided into three tithings, each with its own mill. The upper tithing included the church and Manor House; the middle tithing included cottages; the lower tithing again included cottages and is now called White Lackington. Even today most of the village’s houses are grouped in these three areas.
'Tess of the D'Urbervilles'
Of note is the splendid village church, All Saints, justly described as one of Dorset’s finest. The church is situated in the northern end of the village in the old upper tithing. Parts of the original 12th century church can be seen in the ‘dog-toothed’ south doorway and the piers of the chancel arch, but the bulk of the structure is 15th century. There is a particularly fine tower decorated with an amazing array of gruesome gargoyles.
As with most of Dorset, the village has a strong connection with the novelist Thomas Hardy. Hardy worked as an architect’s assistant on All Saints church. He would have seen the graves of the local Dumberfield family in the churchyard and it is said that their name was the inspiration for his novel ‘Tess of the D'Urbervilles’.
Plan Your Visit
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Getting There
- By Car from Dorchester
Take the B3143 north from Dorchester for about 8 miles (13 km) to Piddletrenthide.
- By Taxi from Dorchester
For taxi services in Dorchester go to  Web:  Dorchester Taxis
Google Map - Piddletrenthide