Blackheath Village

located in the heart of Surrey's beautiful heathland

The Village

The village of Blackheath is situated in a large area of heathland and was mentioned in the Doomsday Book as one of the Southern Hundreds.

By 1833 the Rate Book shows that there were several families listed as having some sort of tenure on the "large waste called Blackheath consisting of heath, useful only for turf cut therefrom or fir or larch trees".

In the early days the dwelling places were described as "mud huts" until about 1845 when they began to be called cottages. By 1867 the number of habitations had increased from 12 to 26, and the rows of two-storied cottages known as Mitchell's Buildings had been erected. By 1873 there were recorded 39 cottages, one pub and one beer shop.

The oldest Gunpowder Mills were set up at Wotton in the early 16th century, and in 1570 the Albury and Chilworth Mills were established. By the late 17th century there were 18 Mills at Chilworth and others at Albury.

The village grew with the need to house workers, for The East India Company's famous Chilworth gunpowder factory, at a safe distance from the accidental explosions which had become more frequent. Gunpowder had been produced at the factory for over 300 years before its closure in 1920.

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