Wokingham from Rocque's map of Berkshire, 1761
Wokingham, named after Wocc, a chieftain who lived there with his people in the Saxon period, was first mentioned in 708 when reference was made to a monastery there.
Wokingham market place, c.1845 (published by F Harwood)
In 1902 Wokingham was described in Murray's Handbook for Berkshire as:
... a bright little market town with many gabled houses, on rising ground on the skirts of the old Royal Forest ... Before the opening of the railway, it was in a somewhat secluded position, and the sport of bull-bating is said to have been carried on ... In 1661, one George Staverton left by will the rent of a house at Staines, to be used in the purchase of a bull, which was to be baited at Wokingham every Christmas ...
The bating was performed in the market place with the alderman, burgesses and town clerk amongst the crowd. The bull, tethered to a stake by a fifteen foot chain, was attacked by a series of dogs until it was near to death. Then it was led away for slaughter. The charity rose in value and soon there was sufficient money to pay for two bulls.
Wokingham parish church, Wiltshire Road, 1812 (click for later picture)
All Saints parish church was restored between 1864-6, and is described by Nikolaus Pevsner as 'Victorian externally, if it were not for the fact that the west tower and the clerestory are of dark brown conglomerate ... But inside the arcades of five bays are medieval. The Pier bases are Norman'
Wokingham Parish Church, 2001 (click for earlier picture)
In 2001 the census recorded 30,209 people living in 12,343 houses in Wokingham, and 6.791 people living in 2,648 houses in Wokingham Without
References in main text:
Early Forest (1)