Coat of arms
Aldershot is located in Hampshire
Location within Hampshire
Population37,131 (Rushmoor Borough Council data)
OS grid referenceSU865505
• London31.8 mi (51.2 km)
Shire county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Postcode districtGU11, GU12
Dialling code01252
PoliceHampshire and Isle of Wight
FireHampshire and Isle of Wight
AmbulanceSouth East Coast
UK Parliament
List of places
51°14′54″N 00°45′41″W / 51.24833°N 0.76139°W / 51.24833; -0.76139

Aldershot (/ˈɔːldərʃɒt/ AWL-dər-shot) is a town in the Rushmoor district, Hampshire, England. It lies on heathland in the extreme north-east corner of the county, 31 mi (50 km) south-west of London. The town has a population of 37,131,[1] while the Aldershot Urban Area – a loose conurbation, which also includes other towns such as Camberley, Farnborough and Farnham – has a population of 243,344; it the thirtieth-largest urban area in the UK.[2]

Aldershot is known as the Home of the British Army, a connection which led to its rapid growth from a small village to a Victorian town.[3]


Early history

Church of St Michael the Archangel in Aldershot

The name is likely to have derived from alder trees found in the area (from the Old English 'alor-sceat' meaning copse, or projecting piece of land, featuring alder trees).[4][5] Any settlement, though not mentioned by name, would have been included as part of the Hundred of Crondall referred to in the Domesday Book of 1086.[6] The Church of St Michael the Archangel is the parish church for the town and dates to the 12th century with later additions. There was almost certainly an earlier church on the site.[7] Cistercian monks from the nearby Waverley Abbey established granges or farms on their outlying estates, including one at Aldershot by 1175 for sheep grazing. We do not know when monks from the Abbey first came to Aldershot but the first documentary evidence is from 1287 when the Crondall Rental records that at 'Alreshate the Monks of Waverlye hold 31 acres of encroachment'. This area ran from the church of St Michael's down to the area around the present Brickfields Country Park while the grange itself was near the church.[8][9] John Norden's map of Hampshire, published in the 1607 edition of William Camden's Britannia, indicates that Aldershot was a market town.[10]

Prior to 1850, Aldershott was little known. The area was a vast stretch of common land, a lonely wasteland unsuitable for most forms of agriculture with scant population. As it existed at the time of the Domesday Survey in 1086, the extensive settlement of Crondall in the north-east corner of Hampshire was certainly Scandinavian, for among the customs of that great manor, which included Crondall, Yateley, Farnborough, and Aldershot, that of sole inheritance by the eldest daughter in default of sons prevailed, as over a large part of Cumberland, and this is a peculiarly Norse custom.[11]

Aldershot Manor, 2013

The first recorded mention of the manor of Aldershot is in 1573 in the will of Sir John White of Aldershot (c1512–1573), alderman of London and knighted when he became Lord Mayor of London (1563-4).[12][13] He left Aldershot Manor to his son Sir Robert White of Aldershot (died 1599). He in turn left the manor to be divided between his two daughters, Ellen the wife of Sir Richard Tichborne and Mary, the wife of Sir Walter Tichborne, brother of Richard.[14] The 18th-century jurist Charles Viner lived in the town and printed his A General Abridgment of Law and Equity on a press in his home. In the 18th century, the stretch of the London to Winchester turnpike that passed through Aldershot between Bagshot and Farnham (now known as the Farnborough Road) was the scene of highway robberies. At one time it had "almost as bad a reputation as Hounslow Heath".[15] Dick Turpin is said to have operated in the area having his headquarters nearby in Farnborough, and there were sightings of Spring-heeled Jack.[16][17][18]

Growth in the Victorian era

In 1854, at the time of the Crimean War, Aldershot Garrison was established as the first permanent training camp for the British Army.[3] This led to a rapid expansion of Aldershot's population, going from 875 in 1851 to in excess of 16,000 by 1861 (including about 9,000 from the military). Mrs Louisa Daniell arrived in the town at this time and set up her Soldiers' Home and Institute to cater for the spiritual needs of the soldiers and their families. During this period Holy Trinity church, the Presbyterian church, the Wesleyan church and Rotunda chapel were built in the town centre to cater for the spiritual needs of the increasing numbers of troops in the nearby camp and the growing civilian town. In August 1856, on her return from the Crimean War and "wishing to be with her sons in the Army", Mary Seacole with her business partner Thomas Day is said to have arrived in Aldershot where they attempted to open a canteen. In her autobiography, Seacole wrote: 'We set to bravely at Aldershott to retrieve our fallen fortunes, and stem off the ruin originated in the Crimea, but all in vain...'.[19] The venture is believed to have failed through lack of funds and the two being declared bankrupt.[20][21][22]

Aldershot Military Tattoo

The Aldershot Military Tattoo was an annual event dating back to 1894. In the 1920s and 1930s, the Aldershot Command Searchlight Tattoo held at the Rushmoor Arena presented displays from all branches of the services, including performances lit by flame torches. At one time the performances attracted crowds of up to 500,000 people. The Tattoo was organised to raise money for military charities. By the end of the 1930s, the event was raising around £40,000 annually.[23] The Tattoo's modern format, the Army Show, was cancelled in 2010 by the Ministry of Defence due to budget cuts.[24] It was briefly revived the following year and attracted 20,000 visitors. In 2012, it was styled as the Aldershot Garrison Show, a smaller free event held on Armed Forces Day.[25]

The Army Show was replaced in 2013 with a general Military Festival. Events were held across the town, including an art exhibition, live music, sports events and film screenings.[26]

During the World Wars

In 1914, Aldershot had the largest army camp in the country with 20% of the British Army being based in and around the town. Aldershot was home for two Infantry Divisions and a Cavalry Brigade in addition to large numbers of artillery, engineers, service corps and medical services. At the start of World War I, the units based at Aldershot became the 1st Corps of the British Expeditionary Force, and soon tens of thousands of new recruits came to the large training centre in the Camp. This had a great effect on the civilian town as there was a great shortage of accommodation for the troops and many were billeted in local houses and schools. Aldershot played a vital role in the formation of Kitchener's Army, providing the core of the Army from 1914 onwards as well as treating the wounded brought back from the trenches in France and Flanders. The Cambridge Military Hospital was the first base hospital to receive casualties directly from the Western Front and it was here that plastic surgery was first performed in the British Empire by Captain Gillies (later Sir Harold Gillies).[27][28]

From 1939 to 1945 during World War II,[29] about 330,000 Canadian troops of the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Canadian Infantry Brigades passed through Aldershot for training before being deployed for the defence of the United Kingdom while much of the British Army was overseas. Additional units of the Canadian Army followed later creating the largest force of British Commonwealth troops ever to be stationed in the UK at one time.[30] The Aldershot riot of July 1945 caused considerable damage to the town centre when disgruntled Canadian troops tired of waiting to be repatriated rioted in the streets for two evenings.[31] In a gesture of forgiveness and goodwill, the Freedom of the Borough of Aldershot was conferred on the Canadian Army on 26 September 1945 in a ceremony held at the town's recreation ground.[29][32] In the following year Aldershot's military prison the 'Glasshouse' was burned down in prison riots.[33]

Post War

Aldershot Town Hall

A substantial rebuilding of the barracks was carried out between 1961 and 1969 by the architecture and engineering firm Building Design Partnership. The work was sped up under government pressure, and various new building technologies were employed with mixed success.[3]

In 1974, Aldershot borough, which had been based at Aldershot Town Hall, merged with Farnborough urban district to form the Borough of Rushmoor under the provisions of the Local Government Act 1972.[34]

After a 2009 campaign, the British Government allowed veteran Gurkha soldiers who had served for more than four years, and their families, to settle in the UK.[35] The rise in the Nepalese population led Gerald Howarth, Conservative Member of Parliament for Aldershot, to request government assistance in expanding local public services to meet the needs of the growing population.[36]

1972 Aldershot bombing

Main article: 1972 Aldershot bombing

On 22 February 1972, Aldershot experienced the first in a series of mainland IRA attacks.[37] Seven people, six of whom were civilian support staff, including five catering staff and a gardener were killed in a car bomb attack on the 16th Parachute Brigade headquarters mess. A further 19 people were injured. The bombing was claimed by the Official IRA as revenge for the Bloody Sunday massacre.[38] The only army officer killed was Captain Gerry Weston a Catholic British Army chaplain. An area to be developed into a memorial garden was used to mark the 40th anniversary of the bombing in 2012.[39]

Aldershot Military Town

Main article: Aldershot Garrison

Sign for Aldershot Military Town

Aldershot Military Town is located between Aldershot and North Camp near Farnborough. It is a garrison town that serves as the location for the military presence in the area. It houses Aldershot Garrison's married quarters, barracks, Army playing fields and other sporting facilities. The military town includes some local landmarks, such as the Aldershot Observatory, Aldershot Military Cemetery, the Union Building, the Royal Garrison Church and other churches. Until 1993, the town served as headquarters for the Royal Corps of Transport and the Army Catering Corps, until they were merged into the Royal Logistic Corps and moved to Princess Royal Barracks, Deepcut.

Queen Victoria and Prince Albert showed a keen interest in the establishment and development of Aldershot as a garrison town in the 1850s, at the time of the Crimean War. They had a wooden Royal Pavilion built, where they would often stay when attending reviews of the army. In 1860, Albert established and endowed the Prince Consort's Library, which still exists today. To celebrate Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee in 1897, 25,000 British and Colonial soldiers marched from Laffan's Plain near Farnborough, reviewed by Queen Victoria. Beside the British soldiers, marched men from Canada, India, Africa, Australia and New Zealand.[40]

The Prince Consort's Library in the military town

Aldershot Military Town comes under its own military jurisdiction. It was home to the Parachute Regiment from its formation in 1940 until it moved to Colchester Garrison in 2003. Many famous people have been associated with the Military Town, including Charlie Chaplin, who made his first stage appearance in The Canteen theatre aged 5 in 1894,[41][42] and Winston Churchill, who was based there in the late 19th century during his time in the Army.[43]

The area also houses various military and regimental museums, including the Royal Army Physical Training Corps Museum and the Aldershot Military Museum, housed in a red-brick Victorian barracks.[44] Until December 2007, the Parachute Regiment and Airborne Forces Museum was in Aldershot. It has since moved to the Imperial War Museum Duxford. The RAMC Memorial to the 314 men of the Royal Army Medical Corps who lost their lives in the Boer War of 1899-1902 is located at the top of Gun Hill.

An outline planning application has been agreed for the redevelopment of some of the former Military Town. The Aldershot Urban Extension will bring some 3,850 new homes, two new primary schools, a children's day-care centre, additional secondary school places, community facilities, waste recycling and landscaping to an area of 150 hectares.

In 2013, the MoD announced a £100 million investment to expand Aldershot Garrison and bring 750 more service personnel and their families to settle in Aldershot.[45]


Wellington Statue

Equestrian statue of the Duke of Wellington on Round Hill

Main article: Wellington Statue Aldershot

A statue of the first Duke of Wellington mounted on his horse, Copenhagen, is situated on Round Hill behind the Royal Garrison Church. The statue is 30 ft (9.1 m) high, 26 ft (7.9 m) from nose to tail, over 22 ft (6.7 m) in girth, weighs 40 tons and is intricately detailed including musculature and veins. It was designed and built by Matthew Cotes Wyatt who used recycled bronze from cannons that were captured at the Battle of Waterloo. It took thirty men over three years to finish the project.

Originally, in 1846, the statue was erected at Hyde Park Corner, London on the Wellington Arch. However, Decimus Burton, architect of the arch, had tried to veto this plan for his preferred "figure in a four horse chariot". Many agreed with Decimus Burton that the statue looked ridiculous since it was out of proportion. It was nicknamed "The Archduke" and was a popular topic in the satirical magazine Punch.

Queen Victoria claimed that the statue ruined the view of the skyline from Buckingham Palace, and she privately proposed that the statue be moved. The Duke, who had only sat for the sculptor on two or three occasions, suddenly became very attached to the statue and would not consider its removal from its arch.

In 1885, the Prince of Wales handed over the monument to Lieutenant General Anderson, the commander of the Aldershot Garrison.

Aldershot Observatory

Main article: Aldershot Observatory

Aldershot Observatory

The observatory is a circular red-brick building with a domed roof, and it stands on Queen's Avenue. Inside is a telescope, 8-inch refractor, mounted on a German-type equatorial mount with a clockwork drive. The telescope and observatory building were a gift from aviation pioneer Patrick Young Alexander to the British Army, a fact which is recorded by a plaque near the observatory door. It reads: "Presented to the Aldershot Army Corps by Patrick Y Alexander Esq 1906".

The Wesleyan Church

Main article: Wesleyan Church, Aldershot

The former Wesleyan church on Grosvenor Road has a 100-foot tower that can be seen for miles around the town and which is described as " the only significant tower in the town".[46] Opened in 1877, the church served the Methodists of Aldershot for over 100 years and could seat 1,150 people until its closure in 1988. Today the original complex of church, Soldiers' Home and Hall has been converted into offices, a dental surgery, gymnasium and homes.[47][48]

Aldershot Buddhist Centre

Main article: Aldershot Buddhist Centre

Aldershot Buddhist Centre in 2018

Aldershot Buddhist Centre is a Buddhist temple and community centre catering for the Buddhists of Aldershot and surrounding area, which is billed as the United Kingdom's first Buddhist community centre.[49] With the influx of large numbers of Nepalis into the area in recent years giving Rushmoor the largest Buddhist community in the United Kingdom,[49][50][51] a temple and community centre to cater for their spiritual and secular needs was required. The centre was formally opened on the High Street by the 14th Dalai Lama in June 2015.[49][52]

Union Building

Main article: Union Building, Aldershot

The Union Building in 1870

When a small party of NCOs and men of the Royal Engineers arrived in November 1853 in the area that is today Princes Gardens, they were the first soldiers to arrive in Aldershot. At this time, the area was heathland with the only building in sight being the Union Poor House, built in 1629 as a sub-manor for the Tichborne family and later used as the local workhouse and a school. It was one of five permanent local buildings purchased by the War Department in 1854 as part of the development of the new Aldershot Camp, and was used by the Army from 1854 to 1879 as No 2 Station Hospital. In later years, it saw a variety of uses before being redeveloped as flats.


The exterior of the station in February 2009

Aldershot railway station is a stop on the Alton Line; South Western Railway runs services between London Waterloo, Alton, Guildford and Ascot.[53]

Aldershot is close to several major roads, including the M3 and the A3. Its nearest dual-carriageway roads are the A31 to the south, which heads east towards Guildford and the A3; to the east, the A331 which heads north towards Farnborough and the M3.

Bus services from Aldershot are provided by Stagecoach South. Since the closure of Aldershot bus station in May 2023 passengers now access the bus services at various on-street stops around the town centre. National Express coach services operate between London Victoria and Portsmouth twice a day.[54]

Farnborough Airport is located 5 miles (8.0 km) away, with Heathrow 29 miles (47 km) and Gatwick 43 miles (69 km) away.


Alderwood School is the town's only secondary school

There are various schools in Aldershot. These will be joined by two new primary schools being built as part of the Aldershot Urban extension development of 3,850 houses. This development will also be served by a further 675 secondary school places being created at the Alderwood and Wavell schools.

A mix of infants and juniors exists, including Park Primary School and St Michael's (C of E). The infant schools are Talavera, Wellington Primary, and Bell Vue Infant School.[55] Junior schools include: Newport County, Talavera, Wellington Secondary and St Joseph's Primary (Catholic).[56] Aldershot has only one secondary school, Alderwood School (formerly Heron Wood School and The Connaught School), though Ash Manor School, Farnham Heath End School, All Hallows Catholic School and The Wavell School are all local.[57] In the town's West End can be found Rowhill School, a special school for students of secondary age unable to attend mainstream schooling for a variety of reasons. There are also two private schools, Salesian College and Farnborough Hill School in nearby Farnborough.

Local newspapers

The local press is the Aldershot News & Mail,[58] a Surrey Advertiser Group broadsheet. At the end of November 2017, the Surrey-Hants Star Courier, a free tabloid, ceased publication.[59]

Leisure and recreation

The Princes Hall is Aldershot's main entertainment venue

Following the demolition of the Theatre Royal and Hippodrome theatres in 1959 and 1961, the local council opened its own Princes Hall in 1973 as an entertainment venue.[60] Another entertainment venue and arts centre is the West End Centre on Queens Road which is popular for small-scale theatre, music and comedy.[61][62]

Music and dance


The Palace (previously The Palace Cinema, The Rhythm Station, Cheeks, Vox), influenced the rapid growth of the hardcore scene from 1992 to 1995.[citation needed] Weekly events included Fusion (Hectic Records), Tazmania, Slammin' Vinyl and Future World. The club also groomed local talents such as DJ Sharkey, DJ Mystery, DJ Sy, DJ Unknown, Vinylgroover, DJ NS, Hixxy, MC Freestyle, MC Young, MC Smiley and Spyder MC. The location of Aldershot between Southampton and London meant the club became a mecca for Hardcore, and it was regularly sold out during this time.[citation needed] At the height of the club's popularity, a teenager's death from a suspected overdose of ecstasy[63] was the catalyst that saw dance music leaving the club and had a negative impact on the hardcore dance scene in the Aldershot area.[citation needed]

The Beatles in Aldershot

Poster for the appearance of The Beatles at Aldershot in 1961

Sam Leach, their then agent and wanting to become their manager, attempted to introduce the Beatles to London agents by promoting shows at The Palais Ballroom, on the corner of Perowne Street and Queens Road[64][65][66] in Aldershot on 9 December 1961. Leach wanted to organise a 'battle of the bands' between The Beatles and Ivor Jay and the Jaywalkers from London. The show was not advertised properly and, as a result, only 18 people attended. The local newspaper, The Aldershot News, failed to publish Leach's advertisement for the show. In addition, Ivor Jay and the Jaywalkers failed to appear. However, the band and friends had their own fun after the show, drinking ale, playing football with bingo balls and dancing the foxtrot. The noise became so loud that a neighbour called the police who shut the event down. When interviewed in 1983 about the Aldershot gig, Paul McCartney described it as "the night we couldn't get arrested, but it wasn't for the lack of trying".[67] After the gig, the band went on to London to join an after hours jam at the Blue Gardenia Club. Weeks after this Brian Epstein became the group's manager.[67]

Rock music

At the end of the 1990s and the start of the 2000s, an underground scene of rock bands cropped up around Aldershot. Notable bands include Reuben, Vex Red, Inter and Hundred Reasons.[citation needed]


West Gate Leisure Park

Union Street and Wellington Street at the centre of the town's shopping district were pedestrianised in the 1970s when the Wellington Centre, a covered shopping centre, was built over the site of the town's former open-air market. As of 2020, Union Street East is undergoing regeneration; the project has been referred to as Union Yard.[68]

During the 1980s and 1990s, the Victorian shopping arcade and various other period buildings in Wellington Street were demolished to allow for the building of an extension to the Wellington Centre known as The Galleries. The Galleries has remained almost vacant for many years now and is currently under consideration for proposed redevelopment into a mixed use retail and residential scheme, with potential commercial leisure space.[69] In 2003, a health check of the town centre concluded that, "Aldershot is experiencing promising signs of revitalisation, particularly in the shopping core".[70] This revitalisation failed to materialise, with prominent traders such as Marks and Spencer leaving the town centre.

In 2005, Rushmoor Borough Council documented the percentage of vacant shops at 10%, 8% and 7% respectively for Union Street, the Wellington Centre and Wellington Street.[71]

The Westgate Leisure Park, which opened in 2012–2013 and which fronts onto Barrack Road, includes a Cineworld cinema, a Morrisons supermarket, and several chain restaurants, including Nando's, Mimosa and Pizza Express.[72] There is also a Tesco superstore located at the rear of the development.

Parks and open spaces

The Cenotaph in Municipal Gardens

Aldershot has many parks, playgrounds and open spaces for sport, play and leisure, including Aldershot Park, Brickfields Country Park, the Municipal Gardens, Manor Park and the Princes Gardens, the latter three a short walk from the town centre.

The legacy of the Army has meant that the land for leisure use, as well as protected areas for flora and fauna, has been preserved over many years. On the Surrey border can be found Rowhill Nature Reserve which is popular with nature-lovers, dog owners, walkers and joggers.


Aldershot has many sports facilities including the Rushmoor Gymnastics Academy, Aldershot Tennis Centre, Aldershot Bowling, Aldershot Pools and Lido, Aldershot Garrison Sports Centre, Alderwood Leisure Centre (formerly Connaught Leisure Centre) and Alpine Snow Sports (Dry Ski Centre). Formerly the town also hosted short circuit motor racing including speedway and stock car racing. Greyhound racing took place at Aldershot Stadium, and point-to-point racing at Tweseldown. Famous running club AFD has produced top runners. Aldershot Park hosts a number of sports facilities and organisations.[73]


Aldershot is home to arguably the most successful athletics club in British and European history, Aldershot, Farnham & District A.C. The club has produced many Olympians including Roger Hackney, Zola Budd, Lily Partridge and Steph Twell and specialises in middlelong distance running. The home of AFD, as it is commonly known, is the Aldershot Military Stadium, Aldershot. Blackwater Valley Runners are a social running club and organise many local races.[74]


Opened in 1930, Aldershot Lido is a traditional outdoor leisure pool that contains 1.5 million gallons of water situated on a 10-acre (4.0 ha) site. The original land was a lake that had become overgrown with weeds. It was bought by the Borough Council in 1920 for £21,000 and was the focus of the council's improvement projects for the town. The Lido became an Olympic venue in 1948 when it was the site of the swimming event in the Modern Pentathlon of that year's London Olympic Games. The pool has extensive areas of shallow water for children to play including a large fountain at the centre. It also has a diving area and water slides. There is an adjoining 25 m indoor pool that allows all year round swimming.


Aldershot Town warming up at the Recreation Ground

The local professional football team is Aldershot Town who compete in the Football Conference. Before 1992 the local club was Aldershot, which folded on 25 March 1992, while playing in the Football League Fourth Division. The current club was formed shortly afterwards and achieved five promotions in its first 16 seasons to return to the Football League in 2008. The previous Aldershot club's biggest success arguably came in 1987, just five years before closure, when they became the first team to win the Football League Fourth Division promotion play-offs, at the expense of a far bigger club – Wolverhampton Wanderers.[75]

Since 1927, the main football ground in the town, and home of both teams, is the Recreation Ground, also known as "The Rec". It has a capacity for 7,100, of which 2,000 can be seated.

A number of successful current and former footballers are from the Aldershot area, including Johnny Berry, who was born in the town in 1926. He played for Birmingham City and Manchester United before his playing career was ended by injuries sustained in the Munich air disaster on 6 February 1958. He had won three league title medals with Manchester United. He later returned to Aldershot to run a sports shop with his brother Peter. He continued to live locally until he died in September 1994, at the age of 68.

Other footballers born in Aldershot include Craig Maskell (a striker for clubs including Southampton, Swindon Town and Reading) during the 1980s and 1990s, and Bruce Rioch. Rioch played for clubs including Luton Town, Aston Villa and Derby County before managing clubs including Middlesbrough and Arsenal, but played for the Scotland team during the 1970s due to his ancestry. Another player from the area is Joe Ralls who played youth football for Aldershot Town FC and currently plays for EFL Championship side Cardiff City FC. Another former notable player is current Burnley Goalkeeper Nick Pope. Pope was at Aldershot on loan from Charlton at the time.

On 25 October 2011 Aldershot Town played Manchester United at the Recreation Ground in the League Cup 4th round losing 3–0, their most successful run to date in the Carling Cup.[76]


Aldershot Cricket Club is based in Aldershot Park in the town[73] and plays in the Thames Valley Cricket League.[77] Army cricket matches have been played at the Officers Club Services Ground, which has also played host to home matches for Hampshire County Cricket Club. Many of these matches held first-class status.[78]


Aldershot Cricket Club shares facilities with the successful Aldershot & Farnham Hockey Club who, in 2022, were looking for a more permanent base.[79]

Rugby union

Formerly known as Fleet RUFC, the club started in 1991 as a pub side. The club was renamed Aldershot and Fleet RUFC (A&F or the Stags) after their move in 2003 from Farnborough to their current home, Aldershot Park.[73] With an ever-expanding juniors section, Aldershot & Fleet were successful in winning the coveted RFU "Seal of Approval" Club of the Year 2008 for the southern region. They now play in the Hampshire 2 league. The club also hosts a Rugby League Vet's team for over 35's.[citation needed]

Greyhound racing

Greyhound racing took place regularly at the now closed Aldershot Stadium in Tongham during the 1950s.

Stock car racing

This section does not cite any sources. Please help improve this section by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. (September 2022) (Learn how and when to remove this message)

Aldershot Stadium was located in Oxenden Road, Tongham, and staged Stock Car racing for the first time on 30 October 1954. Together with other short-circuit formulae (including Superstox, Hot Rods, Bangers and Midgets), racing was held regularly (every Thursday evening, every Boxing Day afternoon and later on Saturdays).

The racing took place initially on a loose shale track inside the greyhound track; after Motorcycle speedway racing at the venue ceased, the shale track was replaced with a hard tarmaced surface. The track was home to the Aldershot Knights for National League team racing in 1966 and again in 1971 and 1972.

The site was the headquarters for the promoter, Spedeworth International ltd. Major national events at the track were few and far between – the most notable title race contested there being the 1975 British Superstox Championship (27 Sep 1975, won by Steve Monk).

The final meeting at Oxenden Road took place on 21 November 1992. Immediately after this date, the site was cleared for construction of the A331 Blackwater Valley Road, which forms a by-pass for Aldershot and Farnborough.

Now, short-circuit motor sport takes place in Aldershot again, at the Aldershot Raceway, Pegasus Village, Rushmoor Arena. It was founded and named by a local man and ex short circuit racing driver Malcolm Roberts, his wife Gwen and their children, in memory of and following the death of their eldest son, also Malcolm, a short circuit motor racing enthusiast. The site is now operated by Spedeworth, whilst the Roberts family relocated to a new circuit in Aldermaston, West Berkshire.

Speedway racing

Circa 1929, a track operated at a stadium in Boxalls Lane. Speedway returned to Aldershot in 1950 at the local greyhound stadium. The Shots featured in the lower echelons of the sport up to 1960.


Aldershot hosted three of the five events in the modern pentathlon at the 1948 London Olympics. The swimming was held in Aldershot Lido, Maida Gymnasium hosted the fencing, and the cross-country equestrian event was held at Tweseldown. All of the Olympic equestrian events, excluding the Prix des Nations, were also held at Aldershot.[80] It was announced on 15 January 2008 that the Aldershot Military Town had been chosen as the official training camp for the British Olympic team ahead of the 2012 Olympic Games in London.[81] However, in April 2010, it was announced that Team GB would be training at Loughborough University.[82]


This section needs to be updated. Please help update this article to reflect recent events or newly available information. (September 2022)

Aldershot is divided into the following wards:[83][84]

Rushmoor Borough Council

Hampshire County Council

As of the May 2018 Rushmoor Borough Council Elections and the May 2017 Hampshire County Council Elections, of the 20 seats on Rushmoor Borough Council and Hampshire County Council covering Aldershot, the Conservatives hold 12 and Labour hold 8.

Member of Parliament

The town is represented in Parliament through the Aldershot constituency. The current MP is Leo Docherty, Conservative.

Notable people from Aldershot

See also: List of people from Aldershot

Ian McEwan

Location filming

The Cavalry Riding School building at Beaumont Barracks featured in The Charge of the Light Brigade (1968)

The barracks scenes in the 1968 film The Charge of the Light Brigade starring David Hemmings and Trevor Howard were filmed at the old West Cavalry Barracks[89] (now largely demolished). The gates of the South Cavalry Barracks stood in as the prison gates for the 1960 film Two-Way Stretch starring Peter Sellers, Wilfrid Hyde-White and Lionel Jeffries.

The area was used for location filming of the 1970 Doctor Who serial The Ambassadors of Death.[90]

Due to its architecture, Bruneval Barracks in Montgomery Lines was chosen as the location for snowy scenes in Kazan, Russia, at the end of the 2009 James Bond film Quantum of Solace.[91] Parts of Aldershot's military training area were also used for the opening sequence in the 2002 James Bond film Die Another Day.[92]

The Montgomery Lines were again used for Brad Pitt's film World War Z based on the novel by Max Brooks.[93]

The HBO series House of the Dragon filmed a number of scenes for the third episode on the Ceaser's Camp military training ground on the border of Farnham and Aldershot.

Twin towns – sister cities

See also: List of twin towns and sister cities in the United Kingdom

Rushmoor is twinned with:[94]

See also


  1. ^ "Population Data Sheet". Rushmoor Borough Council. June 2020. Archived from the original on 10 August 2018. Retrieved 24 May 2021.
  2. ^ "Great Britain and Northern Ireland". City Population. Retrieved 7 July 2012.
  3. ^ a b c "Development of 'the camp at Aldershott'". Archived from the original on 7 November 2009. Retrieved 12 March 2009.
  4. ^ Ekwall, Eilert (1960). The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Place-Names (Fourth ed.). OUP. p. 5.
  5. ^ Mills, AD (1998). Oxford Dictionary of English Place-Names. OUP. p. 5.
  6. ^ "Open Domesday: Crondall". Retrieved 25 September 2022.
  7. ^ Historic England. "Church of St Michael the Archangel (1339670)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 17 July 2014.
  8. ^ Childerhouse, Tim. Waverley Abbey Archived 24 January 2022 at the Wayback Machine, History of Brickfields Park
  9. ^ Baigent, Francis Joseph. On The Abbey Of The Blessed Mary Of Waverley, Wyman (1882)
  10. ^ Norgate, Jean; Norgate, Martin (2005). "Hampshire maps, Norden 1607, SU95". Geography Department, University of Portsmouth. Retrieved 2 April 2014.
  11. ^ 'Origin of the Anglo-Saxon race : a study of the settlement of England and the tribal origin of the Old English people' (1906)
  12. ^ Sir John White of Aldershot, MP: Lord Mayor of London, died 1573 Archived 7 February 2021 at the Wayback Machine, Heathland History website
  13. ^ WHITE, Sir John (d.1573), of London and Aldershot, Hants Archived 15 April 2021 at the Wayback Machine, Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1558-1603, ed. P.W. Hasler, 1981
  14. ^ 'Parishes: Aldershot', in A History of the County of Hampshire: Volume 4, ed. William Page (London, 1911), pp. 2-5. British History Online (accessed 3 February 2021) Archived 23 January 2021 at the Wayback Machine
  15. ^ Froude, James Anthony; Tulloch, John, eds. (August 1863). "A Chapter on Chalons and Aldershot". Fraser's Magazine for Town and Country. Vol. 68. London: J. Fraser. p. 191. Retrieved 2 April 2014.
  16. ^ Hamilton, Ernest (1922). Forty Years On. Hodder and Stoughton. pp. 163–164.
  17. ^ "Our Camp Letter" – Surrey and Hants News & Guildford Times – 14 December 1878, section Aldershot Gazette
  18. ^ Judge Advocate General's Office: General Courts Martial charge sheets: 1877–1880 – the National Archives, Kew
  19. ^ Seacole, Mary, Wonderful Adventures of Mrs. Seacole in Many Lands, James Blackwood (1857), pg. 169
  20. ^ Mary Jane Seacole Archived 2 January 2022 at the Wayback Machine - Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, 2006
  21. ^ Petition for adjudication of Bankruptcy against Mary Seacole and Thomas Day the younger Archived 12 April 2020 at the Wayback Machine - The London Gazette, 28 October 1856 Issue:21935 Page:3526
  22. ^ Alan Palmer, Seacole née Grant, Mary Jane (1805–1881) Archived 20 March 2020 at the Wayback Machine - Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (ODNB) Published online: 23 September 2004 This version: 25 May 2006
  23. ^ "The Aldershot Command Searchlight Tattoos". Aldershot Military Museum. Archived from the original on 8 April 2014. Retrieved 2 April 2014.
  24. ^ Pete Castle. "Aldershot army show 2010 to be axed". Get Hampshire. Archived from the original on 12 March 2012. Retrieved 2 April 2014.
  25. ^ "Aldershot Garrison Show 2012". Aldershot Garrison. Archived from the original on 13 February 2011. Retrieved 2 April 2014.
  26. ^ Pete Bryant (12 July 2013). "First military festival goes off with a bang". Get Hampshire. Archived from the original on 30 October 2013. Retrieved 3 April 2014.
  27. ^ Aldershot: The Home Of The British Army in WW1 Archived 1 May 2017 at the Wayback Machine - BBC 'World War I at Home'
  28. ^ "Cambridge Military Hospital CMH Aldershot". Archived from the original on 3 April 2019. Retrieved 14 June 2019.
  29. ^ a b "The Canadians leave Aldershot - Wartime Canada database". Archived from the original on 22 December 2018. Retrieved 14 June 2019.
  30. ^ "History of Canadians stationed in UK - Canadian Roots UK". Archived from the original on 5 January 2019. Retrieved 14 June 2019.
  31. ^ 'Aldershot Canadians Riot Again' Archived 20 December 2016 at the Wayback Machine Daily News - 5 July 1945
  32. ^ Freedom of the Borough of Aldershot conferred on the Canadian Army - The Aldershot News 28 September 1945
  33. ^ The Aldershot 'Glasshouse' Archived 13 April 2017 at the Wayback Machine - Aldershot Military Museum website
  34. ^ Local Government Act 1972. 1972 c.70. The Stationery Office Ltd. 1997. ISBN 0-10-547072-4.
  35. ^ "Gurkhas win right to settle in UK". BBC News. 21 May 2009. Retrieved 19 May 2012.
  36. ^ "Gerald Howarth's Nepalese immigration letter in full". Get Hampshire. 14 February 2011. Archived from the original on 7 November 2012. Retrieved 19 May 2012.
  37. ^ Woollacott, Martin (23 February 2009). "From the archives, 23 February 1972: IRA kills 7 in raid on Paras' English base". The Guardian. Retrieved 1 April 2021.
  38. ^ "On This Day – 1972: IRA bomb kills six at Aldershot barracks". BBC News. 22 February 1972. Retrieved 3 April 2014.
  39. ^ "Aldershot Barracks: IRA bombing 40th anniversary marked". BBC News. 22 February 2012. Retrieved 3 April 2014.
  40. ^ "The Canadian Army Comes To Aldershot". Aldershot Military Museum. Archived from the original on 20 November 2011. Retrieved 2 April 2014.
  41. ^ Chaplin, Charlie My Autobiography Published by Simon & Schuster (1964)
  42. ^ Robinson, David Chaplin: The Mirror of Opinion Martin Secker & Warburg Limited, London (1983) ISBN 0-436-42053-8
  43. ^ Beaumont Riding School and Beaumont Riding Stables Archived 27 September 2011 at the Wayback Machine on the Rushmoor Borough Council website
  44. ^ "Aldershot Military Museum. Hampshire Days Out". 29 April 2013. Archived from the original on 26 April 2015. Retrieved 29 May 2013.
  45. ^ "Aldershot receives £100m as part of Germany troop withdrawal". BBC News. 6 March 2013. Retrieved 15 August 2013.
  46. ^ The Wesleyan Methodist Church, Aldershot Archived 15 December 2018 at the Wayback Machine - the Historic England Listed Buildings database
  47. ^ "Bygone Aldershot Churches - Aldershot Civic Society website". Archived from the original on 24 October 2016. Retrieved 21 November 2018.
  48. ^ "The History of Methodism in Aldershot - Aldershot Methodist Church website". Archived from the original on 12 July 2015. Retrieved 21 November 2018.
  49. ^ a b c Dalai Lama defies protesters to open Aldershot Buddhist centre Archived 17 December 2018 at the Wayback Machine - BBC News Online 29 June 2015
  50. ^ "Where are the most Buddhists in England and Wales? - The Buddhist Centre - 16 June 2015". Archived from the original on 16 December 2018. Retrieved 16 December 2018.
  51. ^ Ana-Maria Pascal (ed), Multiculturalism and the Convergence of Faith and Practical Wisdom in Modern Society Archived 26 November 2022 at the Wayback Machine, IGI Global (2017) - Google Books pg 38
  52. ^ "About the Centre - Buddhist Community Centre UK website". Archived from the original on 22 November 2018. Retrieved 16 December 2018.
  53. ^ "Timetables". South Western Railway. May 2023. Retrieved 5 October 2023.
  54. ^ "Stops in Aldershot". Bus Times. 2023. Retrieved 5 October 2023.
  55. ^ "Aldershot infant schools". Archived from the original on 6 December 2007. Retrieved 7 February 2008.
  56. ^ "Junior schools". Archived from the original on 6 December 2007. Retrieved 7 February 2008.
  57. ^ Secondary Schools Archived 16 February 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  58. ^ "Aldershot News & Mail". Audit Bureau of Circulations. Retrieved 23 October 2022.
  59. ^
  60. ^ "History of the Princes Hall, Aldershot – the Princes Hall website". Archived from the original on 29 March 2014. Retrieved 23 June 2014.
  61. ^ West End Centre Archived 1 October 2016 at the Wayback Machine on the House Theatre (Farnham Maltings) website
  62. ^ "The West End Centre on Visit Hampshire". Archived from the original on 1 October 2016. Retrieved 30 September 2016.
  63. ^ "Ecstasy may have caused teenager's nightclub death". The Independent. 29 January 1996. Archived from the original on 7 April 2014. Retrieved 15 August 2013.
  64. ^ "The Beatles in Aldershot on The Mersey Beat website". Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 17 July 2015.
  65. ^ "The Beatles at the Palais Ballroom in Aldershot – The Beatles Bible website". 9 December 1961. Archived from the original on 21 July 2015. Retrieved 17 July 2015.
  66. ^ Howard N. Cole, The Story of Aldershot: a History of the Civil and Military Towns, Southern Books, Aldershot (1980) p. 300
  67. ^ a b The time The Beatles came to Aldershot to play for just 18 people Archived 2 July 2022 at the Wayback Machine, 'Hampshire Live', 26 June 2022
  68. ^ "Union Yard". Rushmoor Borough Council. Retrieved 15 December 2023.
  69. ^ "The Galleries, key information and delivery approach". Aldershot Town Centre Prospectus Supplementary Planning Document. Rushmoor Borough Council. January 2016. pp. 44–45. Archived from the original on 6 October 2018. Retrieved 6 October 2018.
  70. ^ "Town Centre Health Checks Cttee report PLN01/63" (PDF). Rushmoor Borough Council. 2003. Archived from the original (PDF) on 27 September 2007. Retrieved 4 September 2006.
  71. ^ "Technical Appendix: Percentage of Vacancies and Planning Applications affecting the town centre". Rushmoor Borough Council. 2005. Archived from the original on 15 March 2004. Retrieved 4 September 2006.
  72. ^ "Westgate Restaurants". 2013. Archived from the original on 13 September 2014. Retrieved 12 September 2014.
  73. ^ a b c "Rushmoor Council: Aldershot Park". Retrieved 26 September 2022.
  74. ^ "Blackwater Valley Runners". Retrieved 25 September 2022.
  75. ^ "Rise of the Phoenix". BBC Sport. 15 April 2008. Retrieved 15 April 2008.
  76. ^ Magowan, Alistair (25 October 2011). "Aldershot 0-3 Man Utd". BBC News Online. BBC. Retrieved 8 August 2014.
  77. ^ "Thames Valley Cricket League: Aldershot Cricket Club". Retrieved 25 September 2022.
  78. ^ "Ground profile: Officers Club Services Ground". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 9 February 2023.
  79. ^ "Aldershot & Farnham Hockey Club need new home". Haslemere Herald. 19 April 2022. Retrieved 25 September 2022.
  80. ^ LA84 Foundation 1948 Summer Olympics official report. Archived 27 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine pp. 44–47.
  81. ^ "Aldershot to host GB Olympic team". 15 January 2008. Retrieved 23 October 2022.
  82. ^ "Loughborough University chosen as HQ for Team GB's 2012 Olympic preparation". Loughborough University. 14 April 2010. Retrieved 23 October 2022.
  83. ^ Map for the wards of Aldershot Archived 27 May 2006 at the Wayback Machine
  84. ^ Aldershot wards with respect to the local election of May 2006 Archived 27 September 2006 at the Wayback Machine
  85. ^ "Rowhill ward - Rushmoor Borough Council".
  86. ^ "Birth records 1837–2006". öfindmypast. Retrieved 3 April 2014.
  87. ^ "Are You Being Served? actor Arthur English honoured with blue plaque". BBC. 15 July 2017. Retrieved 4 March 2018.
  88. ^ "Martin Freeman". BFI. Archived from the original on 30 May 2017. Retrieved 8 January 2022.
  89. ^ "David Watkin Cinematographer website". Archived from the original on 14 October 2016. Retrieved 14 May 2013.
  90. ^ Mulkern, Patrick (28 September 2009). "Doctor Who: The Ambassadors of Death". Radio Times. Retrieved 23 September 2012.
  91. ^ Barracks and Airport provide location for Bond film Archived 13 September 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  92. ^ "Die Another Day". Movie Locations. Retrieved 2 July 2020.
  93. ^ "Brad Pitt talks World War Z". Get Surrey. 20 June 2013. Retrieved 2 July 2020.
  94. ^ a b c d e f g "Rushmoor - Our international partner towns". Rushmoor Borough Council. Retrieved 27 October 2020.