a town in the ceremorial county of Berkshire, England. It is located 3 miles (5 km) east of Newbury and 15 miles (24 km) west
of Reading. It covers about 8.75 square miles (22.7 km2) and has a population of 23,000 people (2003).
It lies on the River Kennet, the Kennet and Avon Canal, the A4 road and the course of a Roman road.
The area has evidence of occupation dating from prehistoric times, and
it is claimed as being one of the oldest (if not the oldest) continuously inhabited place in Britain.
The well-preserved remains of a Mesolithic settlement dating from 7,700 BC have been found in its vicinity. There is also
evidence of Bronze and Iron Age settlements and of a Roman town.
The name may
have been derived from that of a Saxon chief called Tace (or perhaps Tac or Tec), who established
a village in around 500. The settlement was known as Taceham - ham meaning village in Saxon. It is also
possible that the name may have come from the Saxon thaec (thatch). Wherever it came from, the name Taceham
persisted until after the Norman Conquest in 1066 before going through several minor changes until the current one was adopted
in the 16th century.