Buckingham – the 28th burh to be cited in the Burghal Hidage
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By 911 Edward the Elder succeeded to the lands dependant on London and Oxford. It is thought that these lands included Buckinghamshire. 1
“The foundation of a double-burh at Buckingham by Edward in 914 can therefore be understood as part of a deliberate policy of political and military expansion by the resurgent Kingdom of Wessex into the weakened Mercian ‘buffer state’ between Wessex and the Danelaw.” 2
“The assessment for Buckingham stands at 1600 hides, indicating a population within the district large enough to sustain 1600 men for garrison duty as well as maintaining 320 soldiers for the Saxon army (Baines, 1984). This equates to a ‘wall’ of 400 poles or 2200 yards (2012 metres) length. Although BH is not explicit that this would account for both elements of the double-burh it seems common sense that both together formed the burh defensive works and that we should therefore be looking for a total defensive circuit of about 2000m with elements on both sides of the river.” 3
1 Blair, J. 1994. Anglo-Saxon Oxfordshire. Stroud: Sutton.
3 ibid p 37
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