St. Peter's parish church
|Area||6.22 sq mi (16.1 km2)|
|o Density||2,052/sq mi (792/km2)|
|OS grid reference|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|Post town||GERRARDS CROSS|
|Dialling code||01753, 01494|
|Website||Chalfont St Peter|
Chalfont St Peter is a large village and civil parish in southeastern Buckinghamshire, England. It is in a group of villages called The Chalfonts which also includes Chalfont St Giles and Little Chalfont. The villages lie between High Wycombe and Rickmansworth. Chalfont St Peter is one of the largest villages, with nearly 13,000 residents. The urban population for Chalfont St Peter and Gerrards Cross is 19,622, the two villages being considered a single area by the Office for National Statistics.
Gerrards Cross was once a hamlet in the parish of Chalfont St Peter, but became a village and civil parish in its own right and is now a town.
Chalfont St Peter is 19.8 miles (31.9 km) west-north-west of Charing Cross, central London and is also in close proximity to Heathrow Airport, Pinewood and Elstree film studios, and the motorway network (M25, M40, M1 and M4).
At the time of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle in 949 there was no distinction made between the three separate villages: the whole area was known as Ceadeles funtan, meaning chalk springs. The villages were however separated by 1237 when in manorial rolls Chalfont St Peter was referred to as Chalfund Sancti Petri. The suffix St Peter is taken from the dedication of the church in the village. Chalfont St Peter was described in 1806 in Magna Britannia as follows:
Today, Chalfont St Peter is one of the largest villages in the United Kingdom partly due to the proximity to Gerrards Cross railway station which lies between London Marylebone and Birmingham Snow Hill on the Chiltern Main Line. Modern buildings and urbanisation now dominate the village centre and very little historic architecture remains. The first major development of the village were rows of Georgian shops (some of which still remain). Much larger developments came in the late 1920s and these shops that run up the main street towards Gold Hill common now comprise most of the village centre. Modernisation and urbanisation continued up until the 1960s when most of the Georgian shops were demolished in favour of a concrete development of flats, offices and shops fronts surrounding a central car park.
Since the building of Gerrards Cross railway station in the late 19th century, the population of Chalfont St Peter has risen dramatically. From 1801 to 1901, the populations of the village only saw a 700-person rise - giving a population of 1700. But from 1901 to the present, it has become one of the largest villages in the United Kingdom, with nearly 13,000 inhabitants.
Chalfont St Peter is often described as the Gateway to the Chiltern Hills. It is not a major tourist centre but has many places to stay, the most notable being The Greyhound (former local court house where hangings took place), which is situated at the foot of the village on the banks of the River Misbourne. Nearby there are several manor houses of note, as well as many museums, cottages and parks. Milton's Cottage in Chalfont St Giles, the Colne Valley regional park, Bekonscot Model Village, Chenies Manor House, the Chiltern Open Air Museum, Odds Farm Park, Cliveden, Dorney Court, Harrow Museum & Heritage Centre, Royal Windsor Racecourse and Hughenden Manor are the nearest attractions to the village itself. The Chiltern Open Air Museum is situated mainly within the village.
Hamlets in Chalfont St Peter include:
Chalfont St Peter occasionally appears in media, the most recent being in Channel 4's Derren Brown: Apocalypse on 26 October 2012. Several local landmarks featured in the programme including The Village Hall pub, since returned to its former name, the Jolly Farmer, on Goldhill Common and Mr. Crusty on the high street.
Bus routes 104, 105, 335 and 337 run through the main village and the more suburban areas. These bus routes include connections with Slough, Amersham, Chesham, High Wycombe and Uxbridge. It is served by Gerrards Cross railway station, 1.2 miles (1.9 km) south, which has links to London Marylebone and High Wycombe, Oxford and Birmingham.
The village lies 9.5 miles (15.3 km) north west of London's Heathrow Airport.
The Chalfont Centre, on Chesham Lane, is a 100-acre site established in 1894. It exists as both the headquarters for the Epilepsy Society and exists to provide residential care for 100 patients with high-level epilepsy. In 1972 the NHS established the Special Assessment Unit, specially designed to treat patients with severe and complicated epilepsy.
The British Forces Broadcasting Service, run by Services Sound and Vision Corporation, is based at Arqiva's Chalfont Grove Teleport in the west of the village on the border with Chalfont St Giles. The National Lottery Draws were filmed at Arqiva's facilities between 2006 and 2012.