Eaton Socon, Bedfordshire
Eaton Socon, a parish in Bedfordshire, at the verge of the county, on the river Ouse and the G.N.R., 2¼ miles SW of St Neots station on the G.N.R. It contains the St Neots workhouse, and has a post, money order, and telegraph office under St Neots. Acreage, 7602; population, 2192. A castle of the Beauchamps formerly stood here, and an Augustinian priory was founded by two of them in the time of Henry II. at Bushmead, 4¼ miles W of St Neots. The priory was given in 1537 to Sir William Gascoyne, and only the refectory of it now exists; but a mansion bears its name, and is the seat of the Morrison family. The living is a vicarage in the diocese of Ely; gross yearly value, £285 with residence. The church is a noble building in the Perpendicular style, and has a fine tower. Much of the land in this parish is laid out in market gardens.
The following is a list of the administrative units in which this place was either wholly or partly included.
|Ecclesiastical parish||Eaton-Socon St. Mary|
Any dates in this table should be used as a guide only.
The parish register dates from the year 1556.
The Bedfordshire and Luton Archives and Records Service (BLARS) hold the registers for Eaton Socon: Baptisms 1566-1995, Marriages 1572-1996, Burials 1566-1925, Banns 1956-1993. Transcripts in either book or microfiche form for registers prior to 1813 can be purchased from the BLARS (see website for details).
Church of England
St. Mary (parish church)
The church of St. Mary is a noble edifice of the Perpendicular period, consisting of chancel, clerestoried nave of five bays, aisles and a western embattled tower containing 6 bells and a clock with chimes: the church was restored in 1868, the parishioners and others having subscribed about £2,700 for the work, carried out under the direction of Messrs. Cory and Ferguson, architects, of Carlisle: the rood-loft stairs remain, and an ancient carved chancel screen with a modern cornice; there are also some fragments of old oak carving in the aisles and fragments of stained glass: the font is octagonal and coeval with the church: there are brasses to John Coesgrave and wife, c. 1400; and a female effigy, worn, c. 1450: the communion plate bears date 1609: the church affords 460 sittings.
For general information about Civil Registration (births, marriages and deaths) see the Civil Registration page.
Eaton Socon was in St. Neots Registration District from 1837 to 1935 and Bedford Registration District from 1935 to 1965
Directories & Gazetteers
We have transcribed the entry for Eaton Socon from the following:
- Samuel Lewis' A Topographical Dictionary of England, by Samuel Lewis, seventh edition, published 1858. (Eaton-Socon (St. Mary))
- Kelly's Directory of Bedfordshire, Huntingdonshire, and Northamptonshire, 1914
Land and Property
The Return of Owners of Land in 1873 for Bedfordshire is available to browse.
Online maps of Eaton Socon 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 Bedfordshire papers online:
- Bedfordshire Times and Independent
- Biggleswade Chronicle
- Luton Times and Advertiser
- Luton News and Bedfordshire Chronicle
Villages, Hamlets, &cHoneydon
Lower and Upper Staplehoe
A full transcript of the Visitations of Bedfordshire 1566, 1582, and 1634 is available online.