Stevington or Steventon, a parish, with a village, in Bedfordshire, on the river Ouse, 2 miles WNW of Oakley station on the M.R., and 5 NW of Bedford. It has a post office under Bedford; money order office, Pavenham; telegraph office, Turvey. Acreage, 1821; population, 601. There is a parish council consisting of seven members. The manor belongs to the Alston family. Pillow lace is made, and rush-plaiting is carried on. A remarkable spring, known as the Holy Well, issues from a circular-headed archway under the churchyard walls, and runs into the river. The living is a vicarage in the diocese of Ely; net value, £175 with residence. Patron, the Duke of Bedford. The church is an ancient building of stone in the Decorated and Perpendicular styles, consisting of chancel, nave, N and S porches, and a tower, part of which is Saxon. The chancel had formerly some lateral chapels, but these are now in ruins. There are Baptist and Primitive Methodist chapels, and almshouses. An ancient cross stands in the centre of the village.
The following is a list of the administrative units in which this place was either wholly or partly included.
|Ecclesiastical parish||Stevington St. Mary|
Any dates in this table should be used as a guide only.
The parish register dates from the year 1653.
The Bedfordshire and Luton Archives and Records Service (BLARS) hold the registers for Stevington: Baptisms 1654-1963, Marriages 1657-1991, Burials 1653-1983, Banns 1776-1978. 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 an ancient edifice of stone, chiefly in the Decorated and Perpendicular styles, consisting of chancel with lateral chapels, now ruinous, nave with clerestory, porch and a tower containing 5 bells, 3 of which were re-cast, and the whole re-hung in 1905, at a cost of £150: the lower part of the tower, as far as the inset of the aisles, is of Saxon work: in the pavement of the south aisle at the east end is a brass with the effigy of a knight in armour, dated 1422; the bench ends are carved with small figures representing men drinking, sleeping and reading, and figures of various animals; the chancel retains a piscina and hagioscope, and inside the porch is a stoup: on the north side of the church is a low side window; in 1904, an organ was placed in the church at a cost of £150: the church was restored in 1871-2, at a cost of about £2,000, chiefly defrayed by the Duke of Bedford.
For general information about Civil Registration (births, marriages and deaths) see the Civil Registration page.
Stevington was in Bedford Registration District from 1837 to 1974
Directories & Gazetteers
We have transcribed the entry for Stevington from the following:
- Samuel Lewis' A Topographical Dictionary of England, 1848 (Stevington (St. Mary))
Land and Property
The Return of Owners of Land in 1873 for Bedfordshire is available to browse.
Online maps of Stevington 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
Stevington was in Bedford Poor Law Union. For further detailed history of the Bedford Union see Peter Higginbotham's excellent resource: Bedford Poor Law Union and Workhouse.
Villages, Hamlets, &cWestend (Stevington)
A full transcript of the Visitations of Bedfordshire 1566, 1582, and 1634 is available online.