Cardington (St. Mary)
CARDINGTON (St. Mary), a parish, in the union of Bedford, hundred of Wixamtree, county of Bedford, 3 miles (E. S. E.) from Bedford; containing, with the township of Eastcotts, 1466 inhabitants. This parish is bounded on the north by the river Ouse, and comprises 5170 acres, of which 200 are common or waste. The manufacture of lace is carried on, affording employment to about 250 females, who work at their own houses. The river is navigable for barges to Bedford. The living is a discharged vicarage, valued in the king's books at £7. 17.; patrons and impropriators, the Master and Fellows of Trinity College, Cambridge. The great tithes have been commuted for £1350, and the vicarial for £250: the impropriate glebe consists of about 5 acres, and the vicarial of 2 acres; there is a good glebe-house. The church contains a tablet in memory of John Howard, the eminent philanthropist, who lived some years at this place, and served the office of sheriff for the county in 1773; and also a splendid monument by Bacon, the last of his works, erected in 1799, to the memory of Samuel Whitbread, Esq., whose family first settled here in 1650, at a house called the Barns. There are places of worship for Independents and Wesleyans, and at Cotton-End one for Particular Baptists. A parochial school is supported by subscription; and there are some almshouses, founded by John Howard and Mr. Whitbread, and endowed with about £30 per annum.
Transcribed from A Topographical Dictionary of England, by Samuel Lewis, seventh edition, published 1858.