The village one mile to the north-west of and, in practice part of, Woking.

Horsell was a poor village in 1800 and unusually never had a great house. The main industry was market-gardening with several nurseries established.

Horsell Common was very extensive and became famous when H G Wells set the landing of Martians here in his War of the Worlds.

Artist impression of a Bell Barrow  Image: Surrey County Archaeological Unit

Artist impression of a Bell Barrow
Image: Surrey County Archaeological Unit

There are two fine Bronze Age (2500 – 700 BC) bell barrows on Horsell Common. John Aubrey visited the site in 1718 and commented: “On the heath in this Parish are two round Hills or Barrows, supposed to have been the Burial-Place for Men slain in Battles“. Both show signs of damage from earlier archaeologists or treasure hunters.

The church of St. Mary the Virgin dates from the 14th century with much rebuilding. It lies at the summit of the village.

The village of Horsell remained rural until the 1880s but the coming of the railway to Woking made Horsell a desirable residential area so much building took place destroying Horsells rural character and gradually joining it with the new Woking.

The parish of Horsell was united with the Woking Urban District Council in 1907. Part of Horsell is a conservation area. This includes the church, the parish hall, the county first school and the Red Lion public house. This area was first set up in 1978 and has since been extended.

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