Harley lies just about three miles from Much Wenlock, just to the west of the A458 road to Shrewsbury.

photo: David Parker

The ancient village of Harley stands where the northern slopes of Wenlock Edge rise from the valley of Apedale. Now by-passed by the A458, it is a quiet rural hamlet of some 50 houses. There are spectacular views of the Edge to the south, and of the Wrekin to the north-east. There are remains of a Roman villa at Yarchester, less than a mile from the village church. The village lands are listed as "waste" in the Domesday Survey of 1086, possibly a consequence of the Saxon rising against the Norman invaders.

At the centre of Harley, at the top of the hill, is the parish church of St. Mary, The nave and chancel were largely rebuilt in the mid nineteenth century. The tower is the oldest remaining part, its origins dating back to the thirteenth century. A rather unique aspect of the building is the untouched Victorian box-pews, which lend a certain austere feeling to the church.

Inside the main door, on the wall to the left, is a brass plaque with this inscription:

Photo: David Parker

What more can be said? Harley must have been a most thankful village indeed.
                                                                                                 Dave Trenberth

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