Holmer Green History
Celebrating its 800th Anniversary in 2008 historically Holmer Green was a Hamlet within the Parish of Little Missenden. However, now a village in its own right it is the largest Ward within the Parish.
The name Holmer Green is derived from the Manor of Holmer that covered a significant area of the Parish during the Medieval period. The early history of the village is one of people moving from the village of Little Missenden over the centuries to settle on a large area of heath (now vanished) known as Wycombe Heath or Holmer Heath. ‘Holmer’ was first recorded as ‘Holeme’ in 1208 and is probably Anglo Saxon in origin. Commonly thought to derive from ‘mere hollow’ which would refer to Holmer Pond there are other factors which do not support this theory and ‘mere’ may also translate to a Saxon word meaning ‘boundary’. ‘Green’ would refer to a large ancient Green, probably dating from the 13th Century, reduced to 4 acres (16,000 sq.m) in 1854. This area is now known as The Common. The location of the original medieval Manor House is obscure although a suggestion is that it may be at a moated site near Colemans Wood where medieval pottery has been excavated.
Further reading can be found in a publication entitled ‘Once Upon a Heath’ published by local historians McLain-Smith and Riches. The BBC website ‘Domesday Reloaded’ also has more recent history of the village.
The poet Christina Rossetti (1830-1894) and her brother Dante Gabriel Rossetti (1828-1882) a poet, painter and one of the founders of the pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, used to visit their Grandfather Gaetano Polidori a writer and scholar, in the village in the C19th. You will therefore find Rossetti Place, Polidoris Lane and also Rossetti Hall (housing the Little Missenden Parish Council offices) in Holmer Green named in recognition of the family.
Mainly a farming area, local industry also included tambour beading and lace-making with seasonal work in the many surrounding cherry orchards and in the 1920’s Wm Dean had a factory in New Pond Road making tennis racquets.