Bradpole is today joined up with the neighbouring town of Bridport with whom its fortune has long been linked. As early as the 1800's it was the site of the Bridport workhouse. Bradpole however retains its own identity, set prettily on the small hills, with many older cottages in the lower part.

In Lee Lane, where it meets the main road there is a plaque which commemorates Charles II's flight following the battle of Worcester and his failure to find a boat at Charmouth to carry him to France.

The church of Holy Trinity was completely rebuilt between 1845 and 1846 in Early English style. The very odd spire was added in 1863

Bradpoles most famous son is probably William Edward Forster, he was born in Bradpole in 1818 but is normally associated with the City of Bradford where he moved to become a wool stapler in 1841 He developed a successful business and nine years later married Jane Arnold, sister of Matthew Arnold, the poet. In 1861 he became one of Bradford's two MP's.

Forster was committed to universal education and his campaign to have education recognized as a public service gathered momentum after the General Election of 1865. In 1868 he was given the responsibility of developing an elementary education bill and for steering it through parliament. In February 1870 he announced his proposals :-

  1. Education to be funded by the government and by local rates

  2. Grants to be given to Church schools

  3. Boards would be created to establish new schools

What became known as Forster's Education Act became law on 9 August 1870, the first major step towards universal education in the UK. Forster died on 5 April 1886 and was buried in God's Acre cemetery, Burley. He is commemorated in Bradford by a statue, unveiled in 1890, which stands to this day in Forster Square.

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