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Charminster, parish church of St. Mary - - 503842.jpg
Parish church of St Mary's
Charminster is located in Dorset
Charminster shown within Dorset
Population 2,940 [1]
OS grid reference SY680927
Shire county
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Postcode district DT
Police Dorset
Fire Dorset and Wiltshire
Ambulance South Western
EU Parliament South West England
UK Parliament
List of places
50°43′58″N 2°27′17″W / 50.7327°N 2.4546°W / 50.7327; -2.4546Coordinates: 50°43′58″N 2°27′17″W / 50.7327°N 2.4546°W / 50.7327; -2.4546

Charminster is a village and civil parish in west Dorset, England, situated on the River Cerne and A352 road 1 mile (1.6 km) north of the county town Dorchester. In the 2011 census the parish had a population of 2,940.[1]

The village name derives from the River Cerne and the small 'minster' church of St Mary, resulting in "Cerneminster" (recorded in 1223), which eventually evolved into Charminster.[2] The village, which includes Wolfeton House, was the place of origin of Richard Norman and family, one of the Planters of the Massachusetts Bay Colony in America, who arrived there in ca. 1626.[3] Scientist Margaret Bastock died in the village in 1982, aged 62.

Charminster is in the Charminster and Cerne Valley electoral ward, which stretches from the northern outskirts of Dorchester through Cerne Abbas to Minterne Magna. The total population of this ward at the 2011 census was 4,768.[4]


  1. ^ a b "Area: Charminster (Parish). Key Figures for 2011 Census: Key Statistics". Neighbourhood Statistic. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 18 January 2014. 
  2. ^ Mills, A.D., 1986. Dorset Place Names. Ensign, Southampton. ISBN 1-85455-065-9.
  3. ^ Leslie Mahler, "The English Origin of Richard Norman of Salem, Massachusetts." The American Genealogist, Vol. 77, No. 2 (April 2002).
  4. ^ "Charminster & Cerne Valley ward 2011". Retrieved 26 February 2015. 

External links[edit]

Media related to Charminster at Wikimedia Commons