Salisbury (locally /ˈsɔːzbəri/ SAWZ-bər-ee)[a] is a cathedral city in Wiltshire, England, with a population of 40,302,[1] at the confluence of the rivers Avon, Nadder, Ebble, Wylye and Bourne. The city is approximately 20 miles (32 km) from Southampton and 30 miles (48 km) from Bath.

Salisbury is in the southeast of Wiltshire, near the edge of Salisbury Plain. Salisbury Cathedral was formerly north of the city at Old Sarum. Following the cathedral's relocation, a settlement grew up around it which received a city charter in 1227 as New Sarum, which continued to be its official name until 2009 when Salisbury City Council was established. Salisbury railway station is an interchange between the West of England Main Line and the Wessex Main Line.

Stonehenge, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is 8 miles (13 km) northwest of Salisbury.

City of Salisbury
Salisbury Cathedral from Old George Mall

Salisbury Cathedral from the Old George Mall in July 2016
City of Salisbury is located in Wiltshire
City of Salisbury
City of Salisbury
Location within Wiltshire
Population40,302 (civil parish, 2011 Census)[1]
OS grid referenceSU145305
• London78 miles (126 km)
Civil parish
  • Salisbury
Unitary authority
Ceremonial county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Postcode districtSP1, SP2
Dialling code01722
FireDorset and Wiltshire
AmbulanceSouth Western
EU ParliamentSouth West England
UK Parliament


The name Salisbury, which is first recorded around the year 900 as Searoburg (dative Searobyrig), is a partial translation of the Roman Celtic name Sorviodūnum. The Brittonic suffix -dūnon, meaning "fortress" (in reference to the fort that stood at Old Sarum), was replaced by its Old English equivalent -burg. The first part of the name is of obscure origin. The form "Sarum" is a Latinization of Sar, a medieval abbreviation for Middle English Sarisberie.[3]

The two names for the city, Salisbury and Sarum, are humorously alluded to in a 1928 limerick from Punch:

There was an old Sultan of Salisbury
Who wanted some wives for his halisbury,
So he had them sent down
By a fast train from town,
For he thought that his motor would scalisbury.[4]

The ambiguous pronunciation was also used in the following limerick:[5]

There was a young curate of Salisbury,
Whose manners were quite Halisbury-Scalisbury.
He wandered round Hampshire,
Without any pampshire,
Till the Vicar compelled him to Walisbury.[5]

Salisbury appeared in the Welsh Chronicle of the Britons as Caer-Caradog, Caer-Gradawc and Caer-Wallawg.[6][7][8] Cair-Caratauc, one of the 28 British cities listed in the History of the Britons, has also been identified with Salisbury.[9][10]


Old Sarum

Old Sarum Model from West
A reconstruction of Old Sarum in the 12th century

The hilltop at Old Sarum lies near the Neolithic sites of Stonehenge and Avebury and shows some signs of early settlement.[11] It commanded a salient between the River Bourne and the Hampshire Avon, near a crossroads of several early trade-routes.[12] During the Iron Age, sometime between 600 and 300 BC, a hillfort (oppidum) was constructed around it.[12] The Romans may have occupied the site or left it in the hands of an allied tribe. At the time of the Saxon invasions, Old Sarum fell to King Cynric of Wessex in 552.[13] Preferring settlements in bottomland, such as nearby Wilton, the Saxons largely ignored Old Sarum until the Viking invasions led King Alfred (KIng of Wessex from 871 to 899) to restore its fortifications.[12] Along with Wilton, however, it was abandoned by its residents to be sacked and burned by the Dano-Norwegian king Sweyn Forkbeard in 1003.[14] It subsequently became the site of Wilton's mint.[12] Following the Norman invasion of 1066, a motte-and-bailey castle was constructed by 1070.[12] The castle was held directly by the Norman kings; its castellan was generally also the sheriff of Wiltshire.

In 1075 the Council of London established Herman as the first bishop of Salisbury,[15] uniting his former sees of Sherborne and Ramsbury into a single diocese which covered the counties of Dorset, Wiltshire, and Berkshire. In 1055, Herman had planned to move his seat to Malmesbury, but its monks and Earl Godwin objected.[16] Herman and his successor, Saint Osmund, began the construction of the first Salisbury cathedral, though neither lived to see its completion in 1092.[15] Osmund served as Lord Chancellor of England (in office c. 1070–1078); he was responsible for the codification of the Sarum Rite,[17] the compilation of the Domesday Book, which was probably presented to William at Old Sarum,[12] and, after centuries of advocacy from Salisbury's bishops, was finally canonised by Pope Callixtus III in 1457.[18] The cathedral was consecrated on 5 April 1092 but suffered extensive damage in a storm, traditionally said to have occurred only five days later.[19][20] Bishop Roger was a close ally of Henry I (reigned 1100–1135): he served as viceroy during the king's absence in Normandy[21] and directed, along with his extended family, the royal administration and exchequer.[22] He refurbished and expanded Old Sarum's cathedral in the 1110s and began work on a royal palace during the 1130s, prior to his arrest by Henry's successor, Stephen.[21] After this arrest, the castle at Old Sarum was allowed to fall into disrepair, but the sheriff and castellan continued to administer the area under the king's authority.[23]

New Sarum

Bishop Hubert Walter was instrumental in the negotiations with Saladin during the Third Crusade, but he spent little time in his diocese prior to his elevation to archbishop of Canterbury.[24] The brothers Herbert and Richard Poore succeeded him and began planning the relocation of the cathedral into the valley almost immediately. Their plans were approved by King Richard I but repeatedly delayed: Herbert was first forced into exile in Normandy in the 1190s by the hostility of his archbishop Walter and then again to Scotland in the 1210s owing to royal hostility following the papal interdiction against King John. The secular authorities were particularly incensed, according to tradition, owing to some of the clerics debauching the castellan's female relations.[23] In the end, the clerics were refused permission to reenter the city walls following their rogations and processions.[25] This caused Peter of Blois to describe the church as "a captive within the walls of the citadel like the ark of God in the profane house of Baal". He advocated

Let us descend into the plain! There are rich fields and fertile valleys abounding in the fruits of the earth and watered by the living stream. There is a seat for the Virgin Patroness of our church to which the world cannot produce a parallel.[26]

His successor and brother Richard Poore eventually moved the cathedral to a new town on his estate at Veteres Sarisberias ("Old Salisburies") in 1220. The site was at "Myrifield" ("Merryfield"),[27] a meadow near the confluence of the River Nadder and the Hampshire Avon. It was first known as "New Sarum"[26] or New Saresbyri.[25] The town was laid out on a grid.

Salisbury Cathedral West Front
The Great West Front of Salisbury Cathedral.

Work on the new cathedral building, the present Salisbury Cathedral, began in 1221. The site was supposedly established by shooting an arrow from Old Sarum, although this is certainly a legend: the distance is over 3 km (1.9 mi). The legend is sometimes amended to claim that the arrow struck a white deer, which continued to run and died on the spot where the cathedral now rests. The structure was built upon wooden faggots on a gravel bed with unusually shallow foundations of 18 inches (46 cm) and the main body was completed in only 38 years. The 123 m or 404 ft tall spire, the tallest in the UK, was built later. With royal approval, many of the stones for the new cathedral were taken from the old one; others came from Chilmark. They were probably transported by ox-cart, owing to the obstruction to boats on the River Nadder caused by its many weirs and watermills. The cathedral is considered a masterpiece of Early English architecture. The spire's large clock was installed in 1386, and is one of the oldest surviving mechanical clocks in the world.[28] The Cathedral also contains the best-preserved of the four surviving copies of the Magna Carta.

The 15th century Doom painting in St Thomas' church
The 15th century Doom painting in St Thomas' church

New Sarum was made a city by a charter from King Henry III in 1227[29] and, by the 14th century, was the largest settlement in Wiltshire. The city wall surrounds the Close and was built in the 14th century, again with stones removed from the former cathedral at Old Sarum. The wall now has five gates: the High Street Gate, St Ann's Gate, the Queen's Gate, and St Nicholas's Gate were original, while a fifth was constructed in the 19th century to allow access to Bishop Wordsworth's School in the Cathedral Close. During his time in the city, the composer Handel stayed in a room above St Ann's gate. The original site of the city at Old Sarum, meanwhile, fell into disuse. It continued as a rotten borough: at the time of its abolition during the reforms of 1832, its MP represented three households.

Louise Rayner Minster Street Salisbury
A picture of Minster Street, c. 1870

In May 1289, there was uncertainty about the future of Margaret, Maid of Norway, and her father sent ambassadors to Edward I. Edward met Robert the Bruce and others at Salisbury in October 1289, which resulted in the Treaty of Salisbury, under which Margaret would be sent to Scotland before 1 November 1290 and any agreement on her future marriage would be delayed until she was in Scotland.[30]

The Parliament of England met at New Sarum in the years 1324, 1328, and 1384.[31]

In 1450, a number of riots broke out in Salisbury at roughly the same time as Jack Cade led a famous rebellion through London. The riots occurred for related reasons, although the declining fortunes of Salisbury's cloth trade may also have been influential. The violence peaked with the murder of the bishop, William Ayscough, who been involved with the government. In 1483, a large-scale rebellion against Richard III broke out, led by his own 'kingmaker', Henry Stafford, 2nd Duke of Buckingham. After the revolt collapsed, Buckingham was executed at Salisbury, near the Bull's Head Inn. In 1664, an act for making the River Avon navigable from Christchurch to the city of New Sarum was passed[32] and the work completed, only for the project to be ruined shortly thereafter by a major flood.[33] Soon after, during the Great Plague of London, Charles II held court in Salisbury's cathedral close.

Salisbury was the site chosen to assemble James II's forces to resist the Glorious Revolution. He arrived to lead his approximately 19 000 men on 19 November 1688. His troops were not keen to fight Mary or her husband William, and the loyalty of many of James's commanders was in doubt. The first blood was shed at the Wincanton Skirmish, in Somerset. In Salisbury, James heard that some of his officers had deserted, such as Edward Hyde, and he broke out in a nosebleed, which he took as an omen that he should retreat. His commander in chief, the Earl of Feversham, advised retreat on 23 November, and the next day John Churchill defected to William. On 26 November, James's own daughter, Princess Anne, did the same, and James returned to London the same day, never again to be at the head of a serious military force in England.[34]

At the time of the 1948 Summer Olympics, held in London, a relay of runners carried the Olympic Flame from Wembley Stadium, where the Games were based, to the sailing centre at Torbay via Slough, Basingstoke, Salisbury, and Exeter.


The 1972 Local Government Act eliminated the administration of the City of New Sarum under its former charters, but its successor, Wiltshire County's Salisbury District, continued to be accorded its former city status. The name was finally formally amended from "New Sarum" to "Salisbury" during the 2009 changes occasioned by the 1992 Local Government Act, which established the Salisbury City Council.

On 4 March 2018, former Russian double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia Skripal were poisoned in Salisbury with a Novichok nerve agent.[35]


Salisbury falls under two authorities created in 2009: Salisbury City Council and Wiltshire Council. It was once at the heart of the now defunct Salisbury District, which oversaw most of south Wiltshire as well as the city. When Wiltshire's local government was reorganised under a unitary authority in April 2009, Salisbury City Council was formed, although with fewer responsibilities than the former district council as it is now merely a parish.

Three electoral wards – St Martin's and Cathedral, St Edmund and Milford and St Paul's – correspond roughly to the city centre, and the rest of the parish and city council area is covered by five further wards. Netherhampton is in the Fovant and Chalke Valley ward while Laverstock and Ford parish has the same boundary as the Laverstock, Ford and Old Sarum ward.[36] These two wards are not administered by the city council.

The Member of Parliament for the Salisbury constituency, which includes the city, Wilton, Amesbury and surrounding rural areas, is John Glen (Conservative), who was first elected in 2010.


Queen Elizabeth Gardens 2011
Queen Elizabeth Gardens showing part of the River Avon diverted through the gardens.

Salisbury lies in a valley. The geology of the area, as with much of South Wiltshire and Hampshire, is largely chalk. The rivers which flow through the city have been redirected, and along with landscaping, have been used to feed into public gardens. They are popular in the summer, particularly in Queen Elizabeth Gardens, as the water there is shallow and slow-flowing enough to enter safely. Close to Queen Elizabeth Gardens are water-meadows, where the water is controlled by weirs. Because of the low-lying land, the rivers are prone to flooding, particularly during the winter months. The Town Path, a walkway that links Harnham with the rest of the city, is at times impassable. Salisbury is approximately halfway between Exeter and London being 80 miles (128 km) east-northeast of Exeter, 78 miles (126 km) west-southwest of London and also 34 miles (55 km) south of Swindon, 20 miles (32 km) northwest of Southampton and 32 miles (51 km) southeast of Bath.

There are civil airfields at Old Sarum (where the experimental aircraft the Edgley Optica was developed and tested) and at Thruxton near Andover.

Areas and suburbs

Salisbury has many areas and suburbs, most of them being former villages that were absorbed by the growth of the city. The boundaries of these areas are for the most part unofficial and not fixed. All of these suburbs are within Salisbury's ONS Urban Area, which had a population of 44,748 in 2011.[37] However, not all of these suburbs are administered by the city council, and are therefore not within the eight wards that had a combined population of 40,302 in 2011. There are two parishes that are part of the urban area but outside Salisbury parish.

Surrounding parishes, villages and towns rely on Salisbury for some services. The following are within a 4-mile radius of the city centre (more or less clockwise):


Salisbury experiences an oceanic climate (Köppen climate classification Cfb) similar to almost all of the United Kingdom. The nearest Met Office weather station to Salisbury is Boscombe Down, about 6 miles to the north of the city centre. In terms of the local climate, Salisbury is among the sunniest of inland areas in the UK, averaging over 1650 hours of sunshine in a typical year. Temperature extremes since 1960 have ranged from −12.4 °C (9.7 °F) in January 1963[38] to 34.5 °C (94.1 °F) during July 2006.[39] The lowest temperature to be recorded in recent years was −10.1 °C (13.8 °F) during December 2010.[40]


The civil parish of Salisbury, which does not include some of the city's suburbs such as Laverstock, Ford, Britford and Netherhampton, had a population of 40,302 at the 2011 census.[1]

The urban zone, which contains the wards immediately surrounding the city, had a population of 62,216 at the 2011 Census.[43] The wards included in this figure are Laverstock, Britford, Downton, Alderbury, Odstock and the neighbouring town of Wilton, among others, however it does not include the towns of Amesbury or Romsey, as these support their own local populations and are further afield.

At the 2011 census the population of the civil parish was 95.73% white (91.00% White British), 2.48% Asian (0.74% Indian, 0.41% Bangladeshi, 0.40% Chinese), 0.45% black and 1.15% mixed race. Within the parish, the largest ethnic minority group was 'other white' comprising 3.6% of the population as of 2011.[44] There is not much contrast between areas when it comes to ethnic diversity. The ward of St Edmund and Milford is the most multiethnic, with 86.0% of the population being White British.[45] The least multiethnic is the ward of St Francis and Stratford, which contains suburbs in the north of the city, with 94.8% of the population being indigenous White British.[46] The city is represented by six other wards.

Ethnic Groups, 2011
Salisbury CP[1] Salisbury UA[47] Wiltshire
White British 91.0% 91.3% 93.4%
Asian 2.5% 2.4% 1.3%
Black 0.5% 0.4% 0.7%

Within the parish, the largest ethnic minority group was 'other white' comprising 3.6% of the population as of 2011.

86.43% of the civil parish's population were born in England, 3.94% were born elsewhere in the UK. 4.94% were born elsewhere in the EU (including the Republic of Ireland), while 4.70% of the population were born outside the EU.[48]

62.49% of the civil parish's population declared their religion to be Christianity, while 27.09% stated "no religion" and 8.02% declined to state their religion.[49] 0.79% of the population declared their religion to be Islam, 0.41% Buddhism, 0.40% Hinduism and 0.80% as another religion.[49]

95.89% of the civil parish's population considered their "main language" to be English, while 1.12% considered it to be Polish, 0.28% considered it to be Bengali and 0.24% considered it to be Tagalog.[50] 99.43% of the population claimed to be able to speak English well or very well.[51]

In 2001, 22.33% of Salisbury's population were aged between 30–44, 42.76% were over 45, and 13.3% were between 18–29.[52]


Salisbury Market 20040724
The 15th-century Poultry Cross originally marked the section of the market trading in poultry.

Salisbury holds a Charter[53] market on Tuesdays and Saturdays and has held markets regularly since 1227. In the 15th century the Market Place had four crosses: the Poultry Cross, whose name describes its market, the 'cheese and milk cross', which indicated that market and was in the triangle between the HSBC bank and the Salisbury Library, a third cross near the site of the present war memorial, which marked a woollen and yarn market and a fourth, called Barnwell or Barnards Cross, situated around the Culver Street / Barnard Street area, which marked a cattle and livestock market.[54] Today, only the Poultry Cross remains, to which flying buttresses were added in 1852.

In 1226, King Henry III granted the Bishop of Salisbury a charter to hold a fair lasting eight days from the Feast of the Assumption of Mary (15 August).[55] Over the centuries the dates for the fair have moved around, but in its modern guise, a funfair is now held in the Market Place for three days from the third Monday in October. However, there is still an ancient law stating that the fair can be held in the Cathedral Close.

From 1833 to its demolition in the mid-1980s, the Salisbury Gas Light & Coke Company, which ran the city's gasworks, were one of the major employers in the area. The company was formed in 1832 with a share capital of £8,000, and its first chairman was The 3rd Earl of Radnor. The company was incorporated by a private Act of Parliament in 1864, and the Gas Orders Confirmation Act 1882 empowered the company to raise capital of up to £40,000. At its peak, the gasworks were producing not only coal gas but also coke, which was sold off as the by-product of gas-making. Ammonical liquor, which came out as another by-product in the making of gas, was mixed with sulphuric acid, dried and ground to make a powder which was sold as an agricultural fertiliser. The clinker from the retort house was sold to a firm in London to be used as purifier beds in the construction of sewage works.[56]

Salisbury, Butchers Row
Butchers Row in the town centre

Shopping centres include The Old George Mall, The Maltings, Winchester Street and the Crosskeys precinct. Major employers include Salisbury District Hospital. Closure of the Friends Life office, the second largest employer, was announced in 2015.[57]


Salisbury High Street 20040724
Salisbury High Street
Salisbury - St Martin's Church - - 1184177
St Martin's Church (Church of England)

Salisbury was an important centre for music in the 18th century. The grammarian James Harris, a friend of Handel, directed concerts at the Assembly Rooms for almost 50 years up to his death in 1780, with many of the most famous musicians and singers of the day performing there.[58]

Salisbury holds an annual St George's Day pageant, the origins of which are claimed to go back to the 13th century.

Salisbury has a strong artistic community, with galleries situated in the city centre, including one in the public library. In the 18th century, John Constable made a number of celebrated landscape paintings featuring the cathedral's spire and the surrounding countryside. Salisbury's annual International Arts Festival, started in 1973, and held in late May to early June, provides a programme of theatre, live music, dance, public sculpture, street performance and art exhibitions. Salisbury also houses a producing theatre, Salisbury Playhouse, which produces between eight and ten plays a year, as well as welcoming touring productions.

Salisbury Museum

The Salisbury Museum is housed in the King's House, a Grade I listed building whose history dates back to the 13th century, opposite the west front of the cathedral.

The permanent Stonehenge exhibition gallery has interactive displays about Stonehenge and the archaeology of south Wiltshire, and its collections include the skeleton of the Amesbury Archer, which is on display.

The Pitt Rivers display holds a collection from General Augustus Pitt Rivers.

The costume gallery showcases costume and textiles from the area, with costumes for children to try on while imagining themselves as characters from Salisbury's past.

The former home of Sir Edward Heath is now open as a museum. The house, Arundells, is in the Cathedral Close.

Twin towns and sister cities

Salisbury has been twinned with Saintes, France, since 1990[59] and with Xanten, Germany, since 2005.[59] Salisbury is also a sister city of Salisbury, North Carolina and Salisbury, Maryland, both of which are in the United States.[59]


There are numerous schools in and around Salisbury. The city has the only grammar schools in Wiltshire: South Wilts Grammar School for Girls and Bishop Wordsworth's School, which is for boys and is located in the Cathedral Close. Also in the Close is Salisbury Cathedral School. Other schools in or near the city include the Chafyn Grove School, Leehurst Swan School, the Godolphin senior and prep school, St Edmund's Girls' School, Sarum Academy, St Joseph's Catholic School and South Wiltshire UTC.

Sixth form education is offered by Salisbury Sixth Form College, while the Salisbury campus of Wiltshire College offers a range of further education courses, as well as some higher education courses in association with Bournemouth University. Sarum College is a Christian theological college located within the Cathedral close in Salisbury.



The main transport links for the city are the roads. Salisbury lies on the intersection of the A30, the A36 and the A338 and is at the end of the A343, A345, A354 and A360. Car parks around the periphery of the city are linked to the city centre by a park and ride scheme (see details in the bus section below). The A36 forms an almost complete ring road around the city centre. The A3094 comprises the southwestern quadrant of the ring road, passing through the city's outer suburbs.

The lack of adequate roads is a cause of concern to the people of Salisbury: as there is no motorway to link the ports of Southampton and Bristol, traffic passes around the city's ring-road via the A36 to Bath.


There are bus links to Southampton, Bournemouth, Andover, Devizes and Swindon, with limited services on Sundays. Salisbury Reds, a brand of Go South Coast, is the main local operator. Wheelers Travel provide services to Shaftesbury and Andover, as well as intermediate-distance services.[60] Other operators include Stagecoach (Amesbury, Tidworth, Andover); Beeline (Warminster); and First (Warminster, Trowbridge, Bath).[61]

Salisbury has a Park and Ride bus scheme with five sites around the city. The scheme attempts to relieve pressure on the city centre, but as of 2010, ran at an annual loss of £1 million.[62] The sites, which are funded by Wiltshire Council and cost £2.50 for parking and bus transport for an individual or £3.50 for up to six passengers, are:[63] 501 Beehive – A345 Castle Road to the north, 502 Wilton – A36 Wilton Road to the west, 503 Britford – A338 Downton Road to the south, 504 London Road – A30 London Road to the northeast, 505 Petersfinger – A36 Southampton Road to the southeast.[62]

Salisbury Bus Station, which opened in 1939, closed in January 2014 due to high operating costs and the fact that only a third of Salisbury Reds services called there.[64] Situated in Endless Street, on the northeastern edge of the city centre, the site was later developed into retirement homes, which opened in February 2018.


Salisbury railway station is the crossing point of the West of England Main Line, from London Waterloo to Exeter St Davids, and the Wessex Main Line from Bristol Temple Meads to Southampton Central. The station is operated by South Western Railway. Great Western Railway hourly trains call from Cardiff Central, Bristol Temple Meads, Bath Spa to Southampton Central and Portsmouth Harbour.

Salisbury racecourse
Salisbury Racecourse with the cathedral in the distance

Sport and leisure

The city has a football team, Salisbury F.C., who play in the Southern League Division One South & West and are based at the Raymond McEnhill Stadium, on the northern edge of the city. Non-league clubs are Bemerton Heath Harlequins F.C. and Laverstock & Ford F.C..

Salisbury Rugby Club, which is based at Castle Road, play in National League 3 South West.

South Wilts Cricket Club is based at the Salisbury and South Wiltshire Sports Club and play in the Southern Premier Cricket League, which they have won five times in the past 25 years. They produce many juniors who represent both Hampshire and Wiltshire at county level.

Winterbourne Cricket Club is based in Winterbourne Gunner and Farley Cricket Club is based at Coronation Field, Farley.[65][66] Salisbury Hockey Club is also based at the Salisbury and South Wilts Sports Club.[67]

The Five Rivers Leisure Centre and Swimming Pool, which was opened in 2002, is located just outside the ring road. Salisbury Racecourse is a flat racing course to the south-west of the city. Five Rivers Indoor Bowls Club and Salisbury Snooker Club share a building on Tollgate Road, behind the College. The Bishop's Walk on the edge of the city provides a popular viewing point.

Old Sarum Airfield, north of the city centre, is home to a variety of aviation-based businesses, including flying schools and the APT Charitable Trust for disabled flyers.

The city's theatre is the Salisbury Playhouse. The City Hall is an entertainment venue and hosts comedy, musical performances (including those by the resident Musical Theatre Salisbury) as well as seminars and conventions. Salisbury Arts Centre, housed in a redundant church, has exhibitions and workshops.

Salisbury is well-supplied with pubs. The Haunch of Venison, overlooking the Poultry Cross, operates from a 14th-century building; one of its attractions is a cast of a mummified hand, supposedly severed during a game of cards.[68] The Rai d’Or has original deeds dating from 1292. It was the home of Agnes Bottenham, who used the profits of the tavern to found Trinity Hospital next door in circa 1380.

Some buildings in Salisbury are reputed to be haunted. Ghost tours are popular with locals and visitors. One such building is the local Odeon cinema, located in the Hall of John Halle, which is the oldest building in the UK to contain a cinema. The Debenhams department store is said to be haunted by Henry Stafford, 2nd Duke of Buckingham; the store is on the site where he was beheaded in 1483.

Notable people

Before 1900

Since 1900


Salisbury is served by two local radio stations: Spire FM is the city's Independent Local Radio station, and BBC Wiltshire is the BBC Local Radio public service station for the whole county. Regional television services are provided by BBC South and ITV Meridian, and a local television channel "That's Salisbury" is provided by That's TV.

The Salisbury Journal is the local paid-for weekly newspaper, which is available in shops every Thursday. The local free weekly newspaper from the same publisher is the Avon Advertiser, which is delivered to houses in Salisbury and the surrounding area.

In popular culture

See also


  1. ^ Other pronunciations include /ˈsɔːlzbəri/ SAWLZ-bər-ee[2] and /ˈsɒlzbəri/ SOLZ-bər-ee.
  1. ^ a b c d UK Census (2011). "Local Area Report – Salisbury Parish (1170219621)". Nomis. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 18 March 2018.
  2. ^ "Salisbury". Collins Dictionary. n.d. Retrieved 23 September 2014.
  3. ^ Mills, David. A Dictionary of British Place-Names. Oxford University Press, 2003.
  4. ^ Reed, Langford (1934). "Irreverent Radios". Mr. Punch's Limerick Book. London: R. Cobden–Sanderson Ltd. p. 65.
  5. ^ a b Salisbury limerick
  6. ^ Roberts 1811, p. 135.
  7. ^ Welsh Prose 1300–1425. "Oxford Jesus College MS. 111 (The Red Book of Hergest) – page 147r: Trioedd Ynys Prydain, Cas Bethau, Enwau ac Anrhyfeddodau Ynys Prydain", col. 600. University of Cardiff (Cardiff), 2014. (in Old Welsh)
  8. ^ Roberts, Peter (1811). The Chronicle of the Kings of Britain; Translated from the Welsh Copy Attributed to Tysilio; Collated with Several Other Copies, and Illustrated with Copious Notes; to Which Are Added, Original Dissertations. London: E. Williams. pp. 150–151.
  9. ^ Nennius, (Traditional attribution). Mommsen, Theodor, ed. Historia Brittonum  (in Latin). VI – via Wikisource.
  10. ^ Newman, John Henry; et al. (1844). "Chapter X: Britain in 429, A.D.". Lives of the English Saints: St. German, Bishop of Auxerre. London: James Toovey. p. 92.
  11. ^ English Heritage. Old Sarum, p. 22. (London), 2003.
  12. ^ a b c d e f "Salisbury: Thumbnail History". Wiltshire Community History. Wiltshire Council. Retrieved 14 October 2016.
  13. ^ Leeds, E.T. "The Growth of Wessex" in Oxoniensia, Vol. LIX, pp. 55–56. Oxford Architectural and Historical Society, 1954. Accessed 6 October 2011.
  14. ^ Hunt, William (1898). "Sweyn (d.1014)" . In Lee, Sidney. Dictionary of National Biography. 55. London: Smith, Elder & Co. p. 202.
  15. ^ a b British History Online. Fasti Ecclesiae Anglicanae 1066–1300, Vol. IV, "Salisbury: Bishops". Institute of Historical Research (London), 1991.
  16. ^ Wikisource-logo.svg Dolan, John Gilbert (1910). "Malmesbury" . In Herbermann, Charles. Catholic Encyclopedia. 9. New York: Robert Appleton Company.
  17. ^ Wikisource-logo.svg Bergh, Frederick T. (1912). "Sarum Rite" . In Herbermann, Charles. Catholic Encyclopedia. 13. New York: Robert Appleton Company.
  18. ^ Swanson, R.N. Religion and Devotion in Europe, c. 1215–c. 1515, pp. 148 & 315. Cambridge University Press (Cambridge), 1995. ISBN 0-521-37950-4.
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External links

Bishop of Salisbury

The Bishop of Salisbury is the ordinary of the Church of England's Diocese of Salisbury in the Province of Canterbury. The diocese covers much of the counties of Wiltshire and Dorset. The see is in the City of Salisbury where the bishop's seat is located at the Cathedral Church of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The current bishop is Nick Holtam, the 78th Bishop of Salisbury, who was consecrated at St Paul's Cathedral on 22 July 2011 and enthroned in Salisbury Cathedral on 15 October 2011.


Harare (; officially Salisbury until 1982) is the capital and most populous city of Zimbabwe. The city proper has an area of 960.6 km2 (371 mi2) and an estimated population of 1,606,000 in 2009, with 2,800,000 in its metropolitan area in 2006. Situated in north-eastern Zimbabwe in the country's Mashonaland region, Harare is a metropolitan province, which also incorporates the municipalities of Chitungwiza and Epworth. The city sits on a plateau at an elevation of 1,483 metres (4,865 feet) above sea level and its climate falls into the subtropical highland category.

The city was founded in 1890 by the Pioneer Column, a small military force of the British South Africa Company, and named Fort Salisbury after the British prime minister Lord Salisbury. Company administrators demarcated the city and ran it until Southern Rhodesia achieved responsible government in 1923. Salisbury was thereafter the seat of the Southern Rhodesian (later Rhodesian) government and, between 1953 and 1963, the capital of the Central African Federation. It retained the name Salisbury until 1982, when it was renamed Harare on the second anniversary of Zimbabwean independence.

Harare is Zimbabwe's leading political, financial, commercial, and communications centre, as well as a trade centre for tobacco, maize, cotton, and citrus fruits. Manufacturing, including textiles, steel, and chemicals, are also economically significant, as is local gold mining. The University of Zimbabwe, the country's oldest university, is located in Harare, as are several other colleges and universities. The city is home to Harare Sports Club, the country's main Test cricket ground, as well as Dynamos F.C., the country's most successful association football team. Harare's infrastructure and government services have worsened in recent years, and the city has been ranked as one of the least livable cities out of 140 assessed.

Margaret Pole, Countess of Salisbury

Margaret Pole, Countess of Salisbury (14 August 1473 – 27 May 1541), was an English peeress. She was the daughter of George, Duke of Clarence, the brother of kings Edward IV and Richard III. Margaret was one of two women in 16th century England to be a peeress in her own right with no titled husband. One of the few surviving members of the Plantagenet dynasty after the Wars of the Roses, she was executed in 1541 at the command of Henry VIII, who was the son of her first cousin Elizabeth of York. Pope Leo XIII beatified her as a martyr for the Catholic Church on 29 December 1886.

National Register of Historic Places listings in Rowan County, North Carolina

This list includes properties and districts listed on the National Register of Historic Places in Rowan County, North Carolina. Click the "Map of all coordinates" link to the right to view an online map of all properties and districts with latitude and longitude coordinates in the table below.

Robert Cecil, 1st Earl of Salisbury

Robert Cecil, 1st Earl of Salisbury, (1 June 1563 – 24 May 1612) was an English statesman noted for his skillful direction of the government during the Union of the Crowns, as Tudor England gave way to Stuart rule (1603). Salisbury served as the Secretary of State of England (1596–1612) and Lord High Treasurer (1608–1612), succeeding his father as Queen Elizabeth I's Lord Privy Seal and remaining in power during the first nine years of King James I's reign until his death.The principal discoverer of the Gunpowder Plot of 1605, Salisbury remains a controversial historic figure as it is still debated at what point he first learned of the plot and to what extent he acted as an agent provocateur.

Robert Gascoyne-Cecil, 3rd Marquess of Salisbury

Robert Arthur Talbot Gascoyne-Cecil, 3rd Marquess of Salisbury, (; 3 February 1830 – 22 August 1903), styled Lord Robert Cecil before 1865, Viscount Cranborne from June 1865 until April 1868, and Lord Salisbury until his death, was a British statesman, serving as Prime Minister three times for a total of over thirteen years. A member of the Conservative Party, he was the last Prime Minister to head his full administration from the House of Lords.

Lord Robert Cecil was first elected to the House of Commons in 1854 and served as Secretary of State for India in Lord Derby's Conservative government from 1866 until his resignation in 1867 over its introduction of Benjamin Disraeli's Reform Bill that extended the suffrage to working-class men. In 1868 upon the death of his father, Cecil was elevated to the House of Lords. In 1874, when Disraeli formed an administration, Salisbury returned as Secretary of State for India, and, in 1878, was appointed foreign secretary, and played a leading part in the Congress of Berlin, despite his doubts over Disraeli's pro-Ottoman policy.

After the Conservatives lost the 1880 general election and Disraeli's death the year after, Salisbury emerged as Conservative leader in the House of Lords, with Sir Stafford Northcote leading the party in the Commons. He became Prime Minister in June 1885 when the Liberal leader William Ewart Gladstone resigned, and held the office until January 1886. When Gladstone came out in favour of Home Rule for Ireland, Salisbury opposed him and formed an alliance with the breakaway Liberal Unionists, winning the subsequent general election. He remained as Prime Minister until Gladstone's Liberals formed a government with the support of the Irish Nationalists, despite the Unionists gaining the largest number of votes and seats at the 1892 general election. The Liberals, however, lost the 1895 general election, and Salisbury once again became Prime Minister, leading Britain to war against the Boers, and the Unionists to another electoral victory in 1900 before relinquishing the premiership to his nephew Arthur Balfour. He died a year later, in 1903.

Historians agree that Salisbury was a strong and effective leader in foreign affairs, with a strong grasp of the issues. Paul Smith characterises his personality as "deeply neurotic, depressive, agitated, introverted, fearful of change and loss of control, and self-effacing but capable of extraordinary competitiveness." A representative of the landed aristocracy, he held the reactionary credo, "Whatever happens will be for the worse, and therefore it is in our interest that as little should happen as possible." Searle says that instead of seeing his party's victory in 1886 as a harbinger of a new and more popular Conservatism, he longed to return to the stability of the past, when his party's main function was to restrain demagogic liberalism and democratic excess.

Robert Gascoyne-Cecil, 5th Marquess of Salisbury

Robert Arthur James Gascoyne-Cecil, 5th Marquess of Salisbury, (27 August 1893 – 23 February 1972), known as Viscount Cranborne from 1903 to 1947, was a British Conservative politician.

Robert Gascoyne-Cecil, 7th Marquess of Salisbury

Robert Michael James Gascoyne-Cecil, 7th Marquess of Salisbury, (born 30 September 1946) is a British Conservative politician. During the 1990s, he was Leader of the House of Lords under his courtesy title of Viscount Cranborne. Lord Salisbury lives in one of England's largest historic houses, Hatfield House, which was built by an ancestor in the early 17th century, and he currently serves as Chancellor of the University of Hertfordshire.

Rowan County, North Carolina

Rowan County is a county located in the U.S. state of North Carolina. As of the 2010 census, the population was 138,428. Its county seat is Salisbury. Located to the northeast of Charlotte, Rowan County is included in its metropolitan area.

Salisbury, Connecticut

Salisbury is a town in Litchfield County, Connecticut, United States of the New York metropolitan area. The town is the northwest-most in the State of Connecticut. The MA-NY-CT (Massachusetts-New York-Connecticut) Tri-State Marker is located just on the border of Salisbury. The population was 3,977 at the 2000 census.

Salisbury, Maryland

Salisbury () is a city in and the county seat of Wicomico County, Maryland, United States, and the largest city in the state's Eastern Shore region. The population was 30,343 at the 2010 census. Salisbury is the principal city of the Salisbury, Maryland-Delaware Metropolitan Statistical Area. The city is the commercial hub of the Delmarva Peninsula, which was long devoted to agriculture and had a southern culture. It calls itself "The Comfortable Side of Coastal".

Salisbury, Massachusetts

Salisbury is a small coastal beach town and summer tourist destination in Essex County, Massachusetts, United States. The community is a popular summer resort beach town situated on the Atlantic Ocean, north of Boston on the New Hampshire border. It is home to the new Salisbury Beach Boardwalk, full of souvenir shops, restaurants, cafes, arcades and panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean. The population was 8,283 at the 2010 census.

Parts of town comprise the census-designated place of Salisbury.

Salisbury, North Carolina

Salisbury ( SAWLZ-bər-ee) is a city in the Piedmont of North Carolina; it is the county seat of Rowan County. Located 44 miles northeast of Charlotte and within its metropolitan area, the town has attracted a growing population. This was 33,663 in the 2010 Census (growing 27.8% from the Census in 2000).

Founded in 1753, Salisbury is noted for its historic preservation, with five Local Historic Districts and ten National Register Historic Districts. Salisbury is the home to North Carolina soft drink, Cheerwine, regional supermarket, Food Lion and Rack Room Shoes. It is one of two cities in North Carolina to have gigabit capacity through its municipally owned broadband system.

In 2015 Salisbury's Fibrant system (later called Hotwire) became capable of 10 gigabit capacity town-wide; it is thought to be the only town-owned system in the world with such capacity.

Salisbury Cathedral

Salisbury Cathedral, formally known as the Cathedral Church of the Blessed Virgin Mary, is an Anglican cathedral in Salisbury, England. The cathedral is regarded as one of the leading examples of Early English architecture: its main body was completed in 38 years, from 1220 to 1258.

Since 1549, the cathedral has had the tallest church spire in the United Kingdom, at 404 feet (123 m). Visitors can take the "Tower Tour", in which the interior of the hollow spire, with its ancient wooden scaffolding, can be viewed. The cathedral has the largest cloister and the largest cathedral close in Britain at 80 acres (32 ha). It contains a clock which is among the oldest working examples in the world, and has the best surviving of the four original copies of Magna Carta. In 2008, the cathedral celebrated the 750th anniversary of its consecration.The cathedral is the mother church of the Diocese of Salisbury and is the seat of the Bishop of Salisbury, currently Nick Holtam.

Salisbury City F.C.

Salisbury City Football Club was an English football club based in Salisbury, Wiltshire. They were formed in 1947 and played at The Raymond McEnhill Stadium. Salisbury had gained back-to-back promotions in recent years, first to the Conference South in the 2005–06 season by finishing top of the Southern League Premier Division, followed by winning the play-off final in the 2006–07 season to participate in the Conference Premier in 2007–08. They played the 2010–11 season in the Southern League Premier Division after being relegated from the Conference Premier at the end of the 2009–10 season, but won promotion to the Conference South for the 2011–12 season in the first season following their relegation. The club spent two seasons in the Conference South before winning promotion to the Conference Premier via the play-offs in the 2012–13 season. In 2014, the club were removed from the Football Conference after failing to pay debts. The club has reformed as Salisbury F.C. for the 2015–16 season.

Salisbury Plain

Salisbury Plain is a chalk plateau in the south western part of central southern England covering 300 square miles (780 km2). It is part of a system of chalk downlands throughout eastern and southern England formed by the rocks of the Chalk Group and largely lies within the county of Wiltshire, but also stretching into Berkshire and Hampshire. The plain is famous for its rich archaeology, including Stonehenge, one of England's best known landmarks. Largely as a result of the establishment of the Defence Training Estate Salisbury Plain (DTE SP), the plain is sparsely populated and is the largest remaining area of calcareous grassland in north-west Europe. Additionally the plain has arable land, and a few small areas of beech trees and coniferous woodland. Its highest point is Easton Hill.

Salisbury University

Salisbury University (often referred to as 'SU' or the 'Bury') is a public university located in the city of Salisbury in Wicomico County, Maryland, roughly 30 miles west of Ocean City, Maryland, and approximately 115 miles southeast of Baltimore, Maryland and Washington, DC. Founded in 1925, Salisbury is a member of the University System of Maryland, with a Fall 2016 enrollment of 8,748.

Salisbury University offers 42 distinct undergraduate and 14 graduate degree programs across five academic schools: the Fulton School of Liberal Arts, Perdue School of Business, Henson School of Science and Technology, Seidel School of Education & Professional Studies, and the College of Health and Human Services. The Salisbury Sea Gulls compete in Division III athletics in the Capital Athletic Conference, while the football team competes in the New Jersey Athletic Conference.

Salisbury steak

Salisbury steak is a dish made from a blend of ground beef and other ingredients and is usually served with gravy or brown sauce. Hamburg steak is a similar product but differs in ingredients.


Wiltshire (; abbreviated Wilts) is a county in South West England with an area of 3,485 km2 (1,346 square miles). It is landlocked and borders the counties of Dorset, Somerset, Hampshire, Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire and Berkshire. The county town was originally Wilton, after which the county is named, but Wiltshire Council is now based in the county town of Trowbridge.

Wiltshire is characterised by its high downland and wide valleys. Salisbury Plain is noted for being the location of the Stonehenge and Avebury stone circles and other ancient landmarks, and as a training area for the British Army. The city of Salisbury is notable for its medieval cathedral. Important country houses open to the public include Longleat, near Warminster, and the National Trust's Stourhead, near Mere.

Settlements and geographic features near Salisbury
Climate data for Boscombe Down 126asl, 1971–2000, Extremes 1960–
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 13.6
Average high °C (°F) 6.9
Average low °C (°F) 1.1
Record low °C (°F) −12.4
Average precipitation mm (inches) 76.4
Mean monthly sunshine hours 58.0 75.4 115.3 169.2 206.8 207.3 223.5 208.3 151.2 113.8 78.3 53.9 1,661
Source #1: MetOffice[41]
Source #2: Royal Dutch Meteorological Institute/KNMI[42]
Neighbouring areas of Salisbury
Northern Ireland
Unitary authorities
Major settlements

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