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Wilford - Wikipedia

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This article is about the village in the UK. For the community in the United States, see Wilford, Idaho. For people named Wilford, see Wilford (surname).

Wilford is a village close to the centre of the city of Nottingham, UK. The village is bounded to the north and west by the River Trent and to the east by the embankment of the now closed Great Central Railway.


Early settlements[edit]

Remains of a paved Roman ford, bordered by oak posts, were found in the Trent at Wilford in 1900. The settlement is named as Willesforde in Domesday Book, owned by William Pevrel of Nottingham Castle, who also owned the lands of nearby Clifton. It had a fishery, a priest and 23 sokemen. The land passed to the Clifton family in the 13th Century.


Wilford retained its identity as a village until the later 19th century. Surrounded by woodlands and with riverside amenities such as the Wilford Ferry Inn, the village attracted many visitors from Nottingham. Spencer Hall, the Nottinghamshire poet, wrote in 1846 "Who ever saw Wilford without wishing to become an inmate of one of its peaceful woodbined homes."

In 1870 the Clifton Colliery opened on the north side of the Trent, and the area opposite Wilford became industrialised. By the end of the century the village had changed character, with modern brick-built houses replacing old thatched cottages.


The parish was divided into North Wilford and South Wilford in 1887. The population increased to four and a half thousand by 1901, almost a ten-fold increase since 1801. The now-demolished coal-fired Wilford Power Station was built in the early 1920s on the north bank of the River Trent. The civil parish of South Wilford became part of West Bridgford urban district in 1935 bounded by Fairham Brook to the West, the River Trent to the North, Loughborough Road (historically the King's Road, a Royal Highway) to the East and Landmere Lane to the South.

Wilford was subsumed into the City of Nottingham in 1952 as a land bridge between the city and the newly built Clifton Estate. This diminished the formal territory of Wilford, placing land east of the Great Central Railway in the county and the rest in the city.

Neighboring estates have subsequently been built on land previously comprising Wilford: Silverdale housing estate was built in the late 1950s on land from the former Wilwell Farm on the south-western edge of Wilford and Compton Acres built in 1986 on land from the former Brewill Farm as well as marshland and a former municipal waste tip on the eastern edge of Wilford, previously cut off by the Great Central Railway.


South Wilford Endowed CE VA Primary School

Within the area of Wilford, there are two Primary Schools

The Old School House at South Wilford houses St Wilfrid's Church Playgroup and Nursery.

There are also two Secondary Schools in Wilford

Wilford is also in the catchment area of

Located nearby is the Clifton Campus of Nottingham Trent University.

Wilford Church[edit]

The church of St Wilfrid serves a parish covering Wilford, Silverdale and a large part of the Compton Acres estate. The church dates from the late 14th century. It is considered to have been founded by Gervase de Wilford around 1361.

The church contains two memorials to the Nottingham poet Henry Kirke White who drew much of his inspiration from Wilford and Clifton. He is said to have spent much of his time writing poems sat in the churchyard under his favourite tree. The churchyard also contains the grave of Captain John Deane, an adventurer and mercenary who lived in the village.

The churchyard contains war graves of eight soldiers of World War I and an airman of World War II[1] - that of Albert Harvey Iremonger, son of Albert Iremonger - both local residents.

In the churchyard is a gazebo, built in 1757. In 1980 it was restored after a fire four years earlier. Located next to the River Trent the basement was at one time used as a mortuary.

Wilford sports clubs[edit]

Wilford has a number of sports clubs for football, rugby, basketball, bowls and archery.


Wilford Village Tram Stop

Wilford is served by two stops of the Nottingham Express Transit system. Both Wilford Village and Wilford Lane stops are on line 2, linking the city centre to Clifton, and opened in August 2015.[2][3]

Wilford is further served by numerous local bus services provided by Nottingham City Transport and Trent Barton.[4]

Local amenities[edit]

Wilford Toll Bridge c.2010

Wilford Toll Bridge was converted to a foot bridge in the early 1970s and in the late 2010s was expanded to accommodate Nottingham Express Transit second phase extension south of the city to Clifton

St Wilfrid's Church, Wilford features two community spaces: the Church Hall and the Benjamin Carter Hall, both adjoined, at the entrance to the Church Paddock. The Carter Hall was built using proceeds left by Benjamin Carter.

Across Wilford Toll Bridge is Victoria Embankment, which hosts the annual Riverside Festival, the War Memorial and park, and a children's play-area and large paddling pool.

Close by is the Gresham Sports Pavilion which includes an all-weather football pitch, and indoor changing facilities.

On Wilford Lane is a large "Roko" gym. A twenty million pound development on the neighbouring former site of The Château Public House currently underway will include a Lidl store in addition to a smaller gym and Starbucks coffee shop.[5]


Residents of Wilford are known as Wilfordians. The earliest written record of this can be found in Robert Mellors', 'Old Nottingham suburbs: then and now.[6]

Notable families[edit]


Smith Family Coat of Arms

Plaque on Smith's Bank in Nottingham

Smiths:[11] [12]


Henry Kirke White by Thomas Barber


Wilford has two Green Flag Award recognised open spaces, Ruddington Lane Park and Iremongers Pond.

Wilford is home to a number of nature reserves - two being Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) managed by the Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust

Wilford also has a number of Sites of Importance for Nature Conservation


The Co-Op at Wilford Green

Wilford has a Co-operative Local Store, the Tailor's Arms (formerly the Wilford Green), the Ferry Inn (a restaurant of the Chef and Brewer chain) and the Wilford Farm Harvester (a restaurant of the Harvester chain). At the southernmost point of Wilford is the Apple Tree Pub (a restaurant of the Ember Inns chain).

There are several independent businesses owned and run by local residents. The Wilford Village Allotments Association holds an annual plant sale going towards the upkeep of the community allotments plot.

Gleeds, an architects and surveyors company, until recently, had its headquarters in Wilford House. The listed building is currently undergoing a multi-million pound refurbishment to house multiple small companies.[26] A number of companies are based at Wilford Industrial Estate, including Seriff, a large supplies distribution company, and A. W. Consulting, a small marketing consultancy, owing to the area's proximity to the A52 and access to the M1.

The former Wilford Power Station, closed in 1981 and demolished shortly afterwards, is now the location of the Riverside Retail Park with stores including Boots UK, B&Q and Argos, as well as offices for Experian and the Office of the Public Guardian (England and Wales).

Local landmarks and historic features[edit]

The Ferry Inn, Main Road

Church Hall and Benjamin Carters Hall

Wilford Church, Nottingham from Beecham's Photo-Folio c.1900

Wilford Suspension Bridge

Main Road, Nottingham from Beecham's Photo-Folio c.1900

Dorothy Boots Homes

Village Green and The Limes

See also[edit]


  1. ^ [1] CWGC Cemetery Report. Breakdown obtained from casualty record.
  2. ^ "Extending your Tram Service" (PDF). Nottingham Express Transit. Archived from the original (PDF) on 7 August 2015. Retrieved 5 August 2015.
  3. ^ "Nottingham Express Transit Phase 2 opens". Railway Gazette. DVV Media UK Ltd. 25 August 2015. Archived from the original on 28 August 2015. Retrieved 25 August 2015.
  4. ^ "Local Transport". ThisIsWilford. Wilford Community Group. Retrieved 16 April 2021.
  5. ^ "New £20m retail park including Lidl supermarket has been approved". Nottinghamshire Live. Nottinghamshire Live. Retrieved 16 April 2021.
  6. ^ Mellors, R. (1914) Old Nottingham suburbs: then and now. Nottingham: J. & H. Bell Ltd
  7. ^ Nottingham Evening Post Bygones page 33 Friday 2 May 2008 edition
  8. ^ The Legends of Notts County, Dave Bracegirdle 2005 page 91 ISBN 1859834639
  9. ^ "Nottingham Forest at 150: Footballers called to arms for the war". Nottingham Post. Archived from the original on 21 September 2015. Retrieved 14 December 2015.
  10. ^ Roll of Honour - Lincolnshire - Gedney Hill and District Memorial Hall
  11. ^ Mellors, R. (1914) Old Nottingham suburbs: then and now. Nottingham: J. & H. Bell Ltd
  12. ^ Leighton-Boyce, J. (1958) Smiths the Bankers 1658-1958 London: privately published by National Provincial Bank
  13. ^ J. Leighton Boyce, Smith's the Bankers 1658-1958 (1958).
  14. ^ "Smith, Samuel, Brothers & Co | RBS Heritage Hub". Retrieved 16 July 2020.
  15. ^ "SMITH, Robert (1752-1838), of Bulcot, Notts". History of Parliament Online. Retrieved 1 November 2017.
  16. ^ "No. 13914". The London Gazette. 23 July 1796. p. 705.
  17. ^ "No. 14052". The London Gazette. 7 October 1797. p. 968.
  18. ^ Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs
  19. ^ Wilberforce, R. I. & S. (1839). The Life of William Wilberforce (PDF). London: John Murray. Retrieved 16 July 2020.
  20. ^ Barber, Jill. "Letters from anti-slavery campaigner William Wilberforce to Abel Smith". Herts Memories. Retrieved 16 July 2020.
  21. ^ Leibensperger, Summer D. (20 April 2009). Brandreth, Jeremiah (1790-1817) and the Pentrich Rising. In The International Encyclopedia of Revolution and Protest, I. Ness (Ed. Hoboken, New Jersey. USA.: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. doi:10.1002/9781405198073.wbierp0236. Retrieved 10 July 2020.
  22. ^ Jeremiah Brandreth at schoolnet Archived 30 June 2007 at the Wayback Machine accessed July 2007
  23. ^ Hanging, Drawing and Quartering accessed July 2007
  24. ^ [2] accessed June 2015
  25. ^ "Towns and Villages Around Nottingham | Wilford".
  26. ^ "Historic Nottingham office to undergo multimillion-pound transformation". West Bridgford Wire. West Bridgford Wire. Retrieved 16 April 2021.

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Wilford.