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Stevington (St. Mary)

STEVINGTON (St. Mary), a parish, in the hundred of Willey, union and county of Bedford, 5½ miles (N. W. by W.) from Bedford; containing 602 inhabitants. Here are some remains of an ancient monastic institution; and in the neighbourhood of the church, extensive foundations may be traced indicative of large buildings, one of which was a castle overlooking the moors, inhabited by a part of the Plantagenet family. The parish is situated on the river Ouse, and west of the high road from Bedford to Higham-Ferrers. The living is a discharged vicarage, valued in the king's books at £12. 13. 4.; net income, £108: patron and impropriator, the Duke of Bedford. The tithes were commuted for land in 1805. William Barringer, by will dated 18th March 1631, left property in trust for building almshouses for five poor men and women, the residue being laid out in the purchase of 24a. 3r. of land, now producing £38 per annum. This charity was for many years in abeyance, but was recovered at the relation of the present vicar and some of the parishioners; and under a decree of the court of Chancery in 1836, trustees for its management were appointed.

Transcribed from A Topographical Dictionary of England, by Samuel Lewis, seventh edition, published 1858.