Speen, a village and a parish in Berks. The village stands on Icknield Street, 1½ mile NW of Newbury railway station, occupies the site of the Roman station Spinae, and has a post, money order, and telegraph office under Newbury. The parish includes the tithings of Bagnor, Stock Cross, Speenhamland, Church Speen, Marsh Benham, and Wood Speen. Acreage, 3862; population, 3540. Speen and Stock Cross conjointly have a parish council consisting of nine members. Speen Manor belongs to Earl Graven, and Bagnor Manor to the Best family. Benham Park is a mansion in the Italian style, very pleasantly situated in a park of 200 acres. It was formerly the residence of the late Margrave of Brandenburg-Anspach and Bayreuth, and is now the property of the Sutton family. The living is a vicarage in The diocese of Oxford; net value, £370 with residence. Patron, the Bishop of Oxford. The church, which was partially rebuilt in 1860, is a building of flint in the Decorated style, consisting of N aisle, N and S porches, and a western tower, which was rebuilt in 1871. The vicarages of Speenhamland and Stockeross are separate benefices.
The following is a list of the administrative units in which this place was either wholly or partly included.
|Ecclesiastical parish||Speen St. Mary|
|Poor Law union||Newbury|
Any dates in this table should be used as a guide only.
The register dates from the year 1629.
Church of England
St. Mary (parish church)
The mother church of St. Mary, situated in a valley, was, with the exception of the ancient north aisle and chancel, almost entirely rebuilt in 1860 at the expense of the Rev. H. W. Majendie M.A. vicar from 1819, and the tower was rebuilt in 1871 as a memorial to him: the present church is a structure of flint in the Decorated style, consisting of chancel, nave of five bays, aisles, north and south porches and a western tower containing 8 bells: there are several stained windows: in the north aisle is an altar tomb, with effigy in armour, to John Baptiste Castillion, a Piedmontese, who died in 1597, and a monument to Dame Elizabeth Castillion, wife of his son, Sir Francis Castillion kt. who died in 1603; she is represented habited in a farthingale and flowered gown and veil, almost covering the body; there are also monuments to the Craven family, including one by Canova to Elizabeth, Baroness Craven and Margravine of Anspach, who died in January, 1828: there are 350 sittings.
For general information about Civil Registration (births, marriages and deaths) see the Civil Registration page.
Speen was in Hungerford Registration District from 1837 to 1974
Directories & Gazetteers
We have transcribed the entry for Speen from the following:
- Samuel Lewis' A Topographical Dictionary of England, by Samuel Lewis, seventh edition, published 1858. (Speen (St. Mary))
- Kelly's Directory of Berkshire, 1915
Land and Property
The Return of Owners of Land in 1873 for Berkshire is available to browse.
Online maps of Speen 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 Berkshire papers online:
Villages, Hamlets, &cBenham Marsh
The Visitations of Berkshire 1532, 1566, and 1665-6 is available online.