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Bourton on the Water, Gloucestershire

Historical Description

Bourton-on-the-Water, a village and a parish in Gloucestershire. The village stands on the river Windrush, and on the Fosse Way, 4 miles SSW of Stow-on-the-Wold, and has a station on the G.W.R., and a post office (R.S.O.) The parish comprises 2470 acres; population of the civil parish, 1127; of the ecclesiastical, including Clapton and Lower Slaughter, 1492. Near the village is a large Roman encampment, in which swords, coins, pottery, and other Roman relics have been found. There are flour-mills, and malting is carried on. A cottage hospital was erected in 1870. The living is a rectory, united with the chapelries of Clapton and Lower Slaughter, in the diocese of Gloucester and Bristol; net value, £313 with residence. Patron, Wadham College, Oxford. The church was originally Decorated, but was partially rebuilt in 1784, when a tower with dome and pinnacles was added; it was restored in 1875. There are Baptist and Primitive Methodist chapels.

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 CountyGloucestershire 
Ecclesiastical parishBourton-on-the-Water St. Lawrence 
Poor Law unionStow-on-the-Wold 

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

Church Records

The Phillimore transcript of Marriages at Bourton-on-the-Water 1654-1837, Gloucestershire is available to browse online.

The register, including Clapton, dates from the year 1654, with some defects.

The Gloucestershire Parish Registers are available online at Ancestry, in association with Gloucestershire Archives.


Church of England

St. Lawrence (parish church)

The church of St. Lawrence is an edifice of stone, consisting of chancel, nave of five bays, north aisle and a western tower with a dome and pinnacles, containing a chiming clock, added in 1911, and 6 bells: the tower, built in 1785, is in the heavy Italian style peculiar to the Georgian era and does not harmonise with the rest of the church: the west window of the north aisle is a very fine specimen of Decorated work: in 1875 an organ chamber and a north aisle were added, in the Decorated style, at a total cost of over £3,500: a new window was inserted in 1905 in the south side of the chancel by the Moore family, in memory of their father and mother: in 1895 several stained windows were presented, two being memorials respectively to the Rev. John Croome M.A. a former rector, and to Miss Violet Louise Waller, d. February 20, 1894, aged 19: the chancel retains a piscina and sedilia: in 1891 the restoration of the church and chancel was completed: there are 400 sittings.


Baptist Chapel

The Baptist chapel, erected in 1876 at a cost of £2,900, raised by subscription, will seat 320 people.

Civil Registration

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

Directories & Gazetteers

We have transcribed the entry for Bourton on the Water from the following:

Land and Property

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


Online maps of Bourton on the Water are available from a number of sites:

Newspapers and Periodicals

The British Newspaper Archive have fully searchable digitised copies of the following newspapers covering Gloucestershire online:

Visitations Heraldic

The Visitation of the county of Gloucester, 1623 is available on the Heraldry page.