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Yelden, Bedfordshire

Historical Description

Yelden or Yielding, a parish in Bedfordshire, on the borders of Northamptonshire, 4½ miles ESE of Higham Ferrers station on the M.R. Post town and money order and telegraph office, Higham Ferrers. Acreage, 1950; population, 220. The manor belongs to the Crawley family. The living is a rectory in the diocese of Ely; net value, £264 with residence. The church is a building of stone in the Decorated style, of which it is a very fine example, consisting of chancel, nave, S aisle, with S porch, and an embattled tower with spire. It has a good stained window and some interesting tombs and memorials. There is a Wesleyan chapel.

Transcribed from The Comprehensive Gazetteer of England & Wales, 1894-5


The following is a list of the administrative units in which this place was either wholly or partly included.

Ancient CountyBedfordshire 
Ecclesiastical parishYielding St. Mary 

Any dates in this table should be used as a guide only.

Church Records

The parish register dates from the year 1653.

The Bedfordshire and Luton Archives and Records Service (BLARS) hold the registers for Yelden: Baptisms 1653-1997, Marriages 1653-1978, Burials 1653-2002, Banns 1823-1957. 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

The church of St. Mary, an almost perfect example of a Decorated church, is a building of stone, consisting of chancel, clerestoried nave of four bays, south aisle, south porch and a western tower with enriched cornice and low octagonal spire, containing a clock and 4 bells, restored in 1886 by Messrs. Taylor, of Loughborough: the chancel retains piscina and sedilia, and on the north side is a late Perpendicular vestry, between which and the chancel is a curious small recess in the wall: in the aisle is a large canopied recess with croeketed pinnacles and rich finials, and near a piscina and a bracket: on the north side of the church is a flat arched recess, with hood moulding and finial, inclosing an altar tomb with a recumbent figure supposed to represent the founder: the front of the tomb displays five quatrefoils inclosing shields; there are also three brasses, one of which has the effigy of a man in trunk hose, cloak and ruff, and is inscribed to Christopher Stickland, gent. 1628, a benefactor to the parish; another, of a priest richly vested, has an inscription in Latin to John Heyne, rector, 1433; the third is a kneeling effigy, with ruff, representing Thomas Barker, rector, 1617: on the south side of the chancel is a stained window to John Fernie M.A. rector, ob. 1870: the church was restored by the rector in 1892 and affords 220 sittings, 60 of which are free.

Civil Registration

For general information about Civil Registration (births, marriages and deaths) see the Civil Registration page.

Yelden was in Bedford Registration District from 1837 to 1934

Directories & Gazetteers

We have transcribed the entry for Yelden from the following:

Land and Property

The Return of Owners of Land in 1873 for Bedfordshire is available to browse.


Online maps of Yelden are available from a number of sites:

Newspapers and Periodicals

The British Newspaper Archive have fully searchable digitised copies of the following Bedfordshire papers online:

Poor Law

Yelden 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.

Visitations Heraldic

A full transcript of the Visitations of Bedfordshire 1566, 1582, and 1634 is available online.

Postal districtMK44
Post TownBedford