Wallingford’s Saxon Heritage

At the edges of the Kinecroft and the Bull Croft and in ditches around the town, you can see remains of Wallingford’s defensive walls and mo     . The earthen walls were built in the 9th Century to a plan devised by Alfred the Great, to protect the town from Danish Attacks. The Wallingford walls and other’s built at the time are described in the ‘Burghal Hidage’ – a saxon historic document which shows that Wallingford was one of the most important towns in southern England at the time. The walls are believed to be the best examples of Saxon burgh walls still in existance and would have taken 10,000 hours to build. They were probably capped with a wooden fence.

However, the walls failed to protect the town when in 1006 Sweyn Forkbeard, the father of King Cnut, attacked and burned Wallingford. Being a burgh town allowed Wallingford to mint it’s own money, something it continued to do until the 13th Century.


David Hemming