Nowadays Burgess Road runs east to west from High Road Swaythling to the junction with Winchester Road 100 yards west of Hill Lane, although in early times it extended no further westwards than the Common's former eastern boundary. It marked the town's northern boundary and the present form of the name has been in use since the 15th century, with an implication of association with the burgesses of the town. However, it may be questioned whether the name may not have originated in the Anglo-Saxon byrgels, a burial place, found in nearby Burlstone Cross. The eastern (or original) stretch of the road appears to represent part of a Roman road, which probably linked up with the main Winchester road at Swaythling.

From 1756 the road was part of the Romsey-Swaythling-Botley turnpike with a toll house (shown on Brannon’s map of 1862) on the north side of the road near the junction with Portswood Road.


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