Chestnut blight, caused by Cryphonectria parasitica, was identified in Devon, UK, in December 2016. Intensive surveys detected the disease at further sites in Devon (seven), Berkshire (one), Dorset (one), Derbyshire (four) and a cluster of eight sites in southeast London. Over 570 survey samples were tested, and 227 were positive for C. parasitica by isolation and real-time PCR. A total of 227 isolates were tested for mating type, and 197 screened for vegetative compatibility group (VCG) and compared with VCGs known from mainland Europe. The same isolates were also screened for the presence of Cryphonectria hypovirus 1 (CHV-1). Eleven VCGs were identified within the UK population. Five corresponded to already known European VCGs but six were unique. The European VCGs mainly came from the Devon, Dorset, Berkshire and Derbyshire disease outbreaks, whilst unique VCGs were almost exclusively from the southeast London cluster. Both mating types were detected, but only one mating type was present at each site, with the exception of a single Devon site. Perithecia of C. parasitica were never observed at any site. CHV-1 was found in seven isolates from three different locations and was always subtype-I, which has limited hypovirulence. Therefore, although CHV-1 is associated with C. parasitica at some outbreaks, it probably has limited impact on virulence. The diversity of VCGs and their distribution at outbreak sites, together with findings of CHV-1, suggests C. parasitica has been introduced to the UK multiple times over at least two decades through international plant trade.