UK Genealogy Archives logo
DISCLOSURE: This page may contain affiliate links, meaning when you click the links and make a purchase, we may receive a commission.

Cricklade, Wiltshire

Historical Description

Cricklade, a town and two parishes in Wilts. The town stands on Ermine Street and the river Thames, adjacent to the North Wilts Canal, near its junction with the Thames and Severn Canal, about a mile from the boundary with Gloucestershire, with a station on the Midland and South-Western Junction railway, 85 miles from London, and 7½ NNW of Swindon. It dates from very early times, was known to the Saxons as Crocgelad, and was plundered in 905 by Ethelwald, and in 1016 by Canute. It had a preceptory of the Knights Templars, a small ancient hospital, and a ten-pillared town-hall of 1569, and it has now a head post office, two chief inns, two churches, four dissenting chapels, and some large charities. St Sampson's Church is a cruciform structure with a pinnacled tower, was built by the Earls of Warwick, and has an aisle belonging to the Radnors, armorial ' shields, and a curious clock. St Mary's Church is partly Norman, consists of nave, north and south aisles, chancel, and NE chapel, with low ivy-clad tower, and has a sculptured cross in the churchyard. There is a market for fat cattle on the third Tuesday in each month. The town was formerly a prescriptive borough, and from Edward I. exercised the elective franchise, with various interruptions, till the reign of Henry VI., from which time it regularly returned two members to Parliament till 1782, when the franchise was extended to the adjoining divisions of Highworth, Cricklade, and Staple, and it included fifty parishes, but by the Redistribution of Seats Act, 1885, it was merged in the county. The two parishes are Cricklade St Sampson and Cricklade St Mary, and the former includes the tithings of Braydon, Calcutt, Widhill, and Chelworth. Area of St Sampson, 6289 acres; population, 1249; area of St Mary, 122 acres; population, 427. Cricklade St Sampson is a vicarage, and Cricklade St Mary a rectory, in the diocese of Gloucester and Bristol; value of the former, £300 with residence; patron, the Dean and Chapter of Salisbury; gross value of the latter, £238; patron, the Bishop of Gloucester and Bristol.

Cricklade or Northern Parliamentary Division of Wiltshire was formed under the Redistribution of Seats Act of 1885, and returns one member to tne House of Commons. Population, 59,414. The division includes the following: - Cricklade -Ashton Keynes, Braydon, Castle Eaton, Coleshill (part, Lynt), Cricklade (St Mary), Cricklade (St Sampson), Eisey, Latton, Leigh, Marston Maisey, Purton, Shorncote, Somerford Keynes; Swindon -Bishopstone, Blunsden (St Andrew), Broad Hinton (part of), Chiseldon, Clyffe Pypard (part of), Draycot Foliatt, Hannington, Highworth, Hinton Parva, Inglesham, Liddiard Millicent, Liddiard Tregooze, Liddington, Lyneham, Rodborne Cheney, Stanton Fitzwarren, Stratton (St Margaret), Swindon, Tockenham, Wanborough, Wootton Bassett, Wroughton.

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 CountyWiltshire 
Poor Law unionCricklade and Wootton-Basset 

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

Church Records

The register of St. Sampson dates from the year 1672.

The register dates from the year 1684.


Church of England

St. Mary (parish church)

The church of St. Mary is a building of stone, consisting of chancel, nave of three bays, aisles, south porch and a low western tower containing 4 bells: there is a clock at the east end of the nave, above the chancel roof: the chancel is divided from the nave by a circular Norman arch of the 12th century, with the chevron ornament: the aisles are of the Perpendicular character of the 15th century, and the tower Early English: in 1906 a stained glass window was placed in the church in memory of the Rev. John McKaye B.A. rector 1885-1905: there are sittings for 220 persons.

St. Sampson (parish church)

The church of St. Sampson is a spacious cruciform building of stone, dating from about 1180, and consists of chancel, nave of three bays, aisles, north porch and an embattled tower with pinnacles, containing a striking clock and 5 bells: the present vestry was formerly a chapel, built by the Hungerford family: the stained west window is a memorial to the Rev. Francis Dyson M.A. vicar. 1849-87: there is a memorial window to Rose Billinghurst, 1870, and several ancient tablets to Edward Pleydell, 1675; John Nott, 1763; John Bristow, 1788, and others: the church was restored in 1864, and affords sittings for 500 persons.


Baptist Chapel

The Baptist chapel, erected in 1852, has 200 sittings


Congregational Chapel

The Congregational chapel, built in 1878, seats 300


Primitive Methodist Chapel

The Primitive Methodist chapel, built in 1855, will hold 250 persons

Wesleyan Chapel

The Wesleyan chapel, built in 1870, has 200 sittings.

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 Cricklade from the following:


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

Newspapers and Periodicals

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

RegionSouth West
Postal districtSN6
Post TownSwindon