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Brockenhurst

(4/5 based on 6,000+ reviews for top 10 attractions)
Things to do: parks, spas, sightseeing
Brockenhurst is the largest village by population within the New Forest, Hampshire, England. The nearest city is Southampton some to the North East, while Bournemouth is also nearby, South West. Surrounding towns and villages include Beaulieu, Lymington, Lyndhurst, and Sway.HistoryThe earliest signs of habitation in Brockenhurst date back 4,000 years to the Bronze Age: the area is dotted with burial mounds - called tumuli. Beyond that, few signs remain of other habitation during the next 3,000 years, when the Saxon period was brought to an end by the events of 1066.William the Conqueror created his Nova Foresta traditionally in 1079, a vast hunting area lying south and west of his capital at Winchester; it stretched south to the coast at Barton on Sea and west to what is now Bournemouth. In 1086, the Domesday Book recorded that there were four small Saxon manors in the Brockenhurst area, Mapleham, Hincelveslei, Brochelie and Broceste. Mapleham no longer exists, probably being subsumed within Brookley; the name Hincelveslei has become Hinchelsea which lies to the west of Brockenhurst. The third manor, Brochelie, gives the modern name, Brookley, which was granted a regular weekly market and an annual fair, lasting several days, in the 1347. Brochelie had forest rights to graze sheep on the open forest, but only between Wilverley and what is now Rhinefield Road, this right is usually associated with religious houses and was probably attached to the medieval estate which Christchurch Priory held at Brookley.
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