Holy Trinity, built in 1851
The name Bracknell is first recorded in a Winkfield Boundary Charter of AD 942 as Braccan heal, and may mean "Nook of land belonging to a man called Bracca", from the
Old English Braccan (genitive singular of a personal name) + heal, healh (a corner, nook or secret place).
 An early form of the town's name, Brakenhale, still survives as
the name of one of its schools. The town covers all of the old village of
Easthampstead (though not all of the old parish) and the hamlet of
There is a
round barrow at Bill Hill.
Easthampstead Park was a favoured royal hunting lodge in Windsor Forest and
Catherine of Aragon was banished there until her divorce was finalised.
 It was later the home of the
Trumbulls who were patrons of
Alexander Pope from Binfield.
To the north-east of the town is to be found the Quelm Stone, a
 and to the south-west, just over the border in
Caesar's Camp, an
One of the oldest buildings in the town is the 'Old Manor'
public house, a 17th-century brick
manor house featuring a number of
 Next door once stood the 'Hind's Head' coaching inn, where it is said
Dick Turpin used to drink.
 It is believed that there were once underground tunnels between the two, along which the famous
highwayman could escape from the authorities.
 Other surviving old pubs are the Red Lion and the Bull, all timber-framed and dating from before the 18th century.
The oldest place of worship in the town is the
parish church of
St Michael and St Mary Magdalene in
Easthampstead. There has been a church there since
Saxon times, although the present building dates from the mid 19th century, except for the lower portions of the Tudor tower.
 Holy Trinity Church near the town centre was built in 1851.
Bracknell was designated a
new town in 1949,
 in the aftermath of the
Second World War. The site was originally a village cum small town in the
civil parish of
Warfield in the
Easthampstead Rural District. Very little of the original Bracknell is left. The location was preferred to
White Waltham, which was also considered, because the Bracknell site avoided encroaching on good quality agricultural land. It also had the additional advantage of being on a railway line.
The new town was planned for 25,000 people; it was intended to occupy over 1,000 hectares (about 6 square miles) of land in and around 'Old Bracknell' in the area now occupied by Priestwood, Easthampstead, Bullbrook and Harmans Water. The existing town centre and industrial areas were to be retained with new industry brought in to provide jobs.
 However, the town has since expanded far beyond its intended size into farmland to the south, and major expansion is now, as of 2008, under way (
) to the west of the town at Peacock Farm and
The Parks on the site of the former RAF Staff College.
At the heart of most Bracknell neighbourhoods is a church, a small parade of shops, a primary school, a community centre and a pub. The neighbourhoods varied in population from 3,000 to 9,000. The plans included pedestrianisation, the construction of a ring road, and segregation of industrial areas from residential areas.
A slightly confusing feature of some of the estates is that streets only have names, not titles – in
Birch Hill, Crown Wood, Great Hollands and others there is no 'Road', '
Avenue', 'Street', just 'Frobisher', 'Jameston', 'Juniper', 'Jevington'. The residential streets are, however, named in alphabetical order in
Great Hollands and
Wildridings, with As, through Ds, such as Donnybrook, in
Hanworth, Js, such as 'Jameston', 'Juniper' and 'Jevington' in