The village lies five miles north east of the centre of Coventry, close to the village of Shilton. The hamlet of Woollcombe lies within the parish. The Oxford canal cuts through the village.
The village name derives from the Saxon anstig, meaning one-path, which is taken to mean a narrow or lonely path or a path linking other paths. The two footpaths are now major roads. The village was called Anestie in the Domesday Book of 1086. There is a joint Domesday entry for Ansty and Foleshill which may also include Exhall – Focheshelle and Ecleshelle.
Ansty lies near to the villages of Shilton, just a mile away, and Barnacle and the three villages have, and to a large extent still do, enjoy a combined relationship. There are churches at both Ansty and Shilton but it appears that in periods in the past, services would only be held at one or the other church, not both at the same time. The relationship would not be unusual except that the boundary between the City/County of Coventry and the County of Warwickshire fell somewhere between the village of Ansty and the village of Shilton and it seems that no-one was quite certain where that boundary was. Sometimes rates were collected by Coventry and at other times by Warwickshire. Today Ansty falls within Warwickshire but its local government administration remains confusing as, although it lies only 6 miles from either Coventry or Nuneaton, it falls into Rugby urban district which has its centre some 13 miles away.
The church dates from the 12th century although the spire was a much later addition which was erected to the memory of Major-General Adams, who fell at Inkerman during the Crimean War. The building of the imposing Ansty Hall, (now a hotel) which is on the edge of the village, was begun in 1678 by Richard Taylor, a former Roundhead, and completed by the Adams family in the 18th and 19th centuries. There was no earlier manor house on the site.Ansty remains a small village with 318 recorded residents in the 2001 census. Much of the old housing remains.
LINKS: © Copyright NNWFHS 1998/2009 Return to Towns Map
Victoria County History from British History Online
© Copyright NNWFHS 1998/2009
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