Blakesley, a village and a parish in Northamptonshire.. The village stands 4½ miles W by N of Towcester station on the L. & N.W.R., and 6 S of Weedon; and has a post and money order office under Towcester, which is the telegraph office. The parish includes also the hamlet of Woodend, and part of the hamlet of Foxley. Acreage, 2391; population, 453. Blakesley Hall belonged anciently to the Knights of St John, and is a chief residence. The living is a vicarage in the diocese of Peterborough; net value, £280 with residence, in the gift of Hereford College, Oxford. The church, which contains a brass of 1416, is an ancient building of stone in. The Early English style. There are Baptist and Wesleyan chapels, and some valuable charities.
The following is a list of the administrative units in which this place was either wholly or partly included.
|Ecclesiastical parish||Blakesley St. Mary|
|Poor Law union||Towcester|
Any dates in this table should be used as a guide only.
The register, including Woodend, dates from the year 1538.
Ancestry.co.uk, in association with the Northamptonshire Record Office, have images of the Parish Registers and Bishop's Transcripts for Northamptonshire online.
Church of England
Blessed Virgin (parish church)
The church of the Blessed Virgin is an ancient edifice of stone in the Perpendicular style, consisting of chancel, clerestoried nave, aisles, south porch and an embattled western tower, containing a clock and 5 bells: on the west wall is a brass, with effigy in armour, with collar of SS. to Matthew Swetenham, bow-bearer to Henry IV. ob. 1416, and on the north chancel wall a curious monument, with mutilated effigies, to Willia1n Wattes, dated 16th June, 1614: the church, (with the exception of the chancel), was thoroughly restored in 1874, at a cost of nearly £1,400, and the chancel was rebuilt at the expense of the lord of the manor in 1897: there are 250 sittings. A burial ground of two roods, given by the Duke of Grafton K.G., C.B. was opened in 1884.
For general information about Civil Registration (births, marriages and deaths) see the Civil Registration page.
Directories & Gazetteers
We have transcribed the entry for Blakesley from the following:
- Samuel Lewis' A Topographical Dictionary of England, 1848 (Blakesley (St. Mary))
- Kelly's Directory of Bedfordshire, Huntingdonshire, and Northamptonshire, 1914
Land and Property
Blakesley Hall is an ancient and substantial building of stone, standing in grounds of about 25 acres; it formerly belonged to the Knights Hospitallers of the Order of St. John of Jerusalem; at the dissolution of the monasteries it was granted to the Princess Elizabeth, and in the time of Edward VI. was given to the Duke of Northumberland in exchange for Tonbridge, in Kent. In the reign of Queen Mary it was restored to the Knights Hospitallers, and in Queen Elizabeth's reign it was granted to Thomas Watts esq. The hall has been restored and an entirely new wing added, under the superintendence of Messrs. Law and Harris, of Northampton: in the grounds is a chalybeate spring, similar to that at Tunbridge Wells.
The Return of Owners of Land in 1873 for Northamptonshire is available to browse.
Online maps of Blakesley are available from a number of sites:
- Bing (Current Ordnance Survey maps).
- Google Streetview.
- National Library of Scotland. (Old maps)
- old-maps.co.uk (Old Ordnance Survey maps to buy).
- Streetmap.co.uk (Current Ordnance Survey maps).
- A Vision of Britain through Time. (Old maps)
Newspapers and Periodicals
The British Newspaper Archive have fully searchable digitised copies of the following Northamptonshire papers online: