It was the Danes in the 9th century who first settled in the valley, discovering it as they travelled up the Thames. They are thought to have named the place from two words 'shire' and 'meeting place'. The hamlet of Skirmett today is a row of 55 houses and cottages along a stream at the bottom of a valley. There are a number of outlying farms on the hills and one in the village. The road runs along the length of the valley starting at Lane End and going down into the valley before joining the villages of Fingest, Frieth, Tur-ville, Skirmett and Hambleden. In former times the hamlet of Skirmett was an offshoot of Poynants Manor.

The houses are a mixture of old and new. Many of the buildings have changed their uses as the chapels have become houses, as have the bakery, shop and school. Only a third of the people work in the area. The village does not serve as a centre as it once did but still has two public houses and a village hall.

Article written by members of the Buckinghamshire Federation of Women's Institutes for the publication "The Buckinghamshire Village Book" (1987) and reproduced here with their permission

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