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Helmdon Historical Documents



Helmdon is a large village and parish, with a station on the London and North Eastern and the London, Midland and Scottish railways, 7 miles southwest from Towcester, 4½ north from Brackley and about 63 from London, in the Daventry division of the county, hundred of King’s Sutton, petty sessional division and union of Brackley, county court district of Banbury, rural deanery of Brackley (second portion), archdeaconry of Northampton and diocese of Peterborough. The church of St Mary Magdalen is a building of stone in the Decorated style, consisting of chancel, clerestoriad nave, aisles, north and south porches and an embattled western tower with pinnacles, containing 6 bells: the chancel retains a piscina and sedilia, and in the north aisle is a piscina, found under the floor of the church during the restoration: the tower was rebuilt in 1825 and the church restored in 1875, at a cost of £1,600, under the direction of Mr Law, architect, of Northampton, when the nave and aisle were new roofed, the interior reseated with open beaches, new pulpit and other fittings introduced, organ chamber erected, western gallery removed and other works carried out: the communion table and reredos were presented in 1881 by James Fairbrother esq, there are also 280 sittings.

In the churchyard is a yew tree of remarkable proportions and beauty, measuring round the trunk nearly eight yards. The register dates from the year 1572. The living is a rectory, net yearly value £262, including 55 acres of glebe, with residence, in the gift of the President and Fellows of Corpus Christi College, Oxford, and held since 1919 by the Rev William Bartlett M.A of that college, who is also rector of Stutchbury. In the porch of the present rectory is a mantelpiece which originally belonged to the old rectory house; it bears the date 1533 the initials "W.R." and other carvings, and is in good preservation. There is a Baptist chapel here. In an enclosure surrounded by oak fencing, near the centre of the village, stands a stone cross, erected in memory of the men connected with the parish who lost their lives in the Great War, 1914-18. A reading room was erected in 1887 by C.Fairbrother esq in memory of his parents. There are several old quarries in this parish, which produce fine freestone, called after the name of the village, and formerly in great request, but the working of the quarries has been discontinued. Mrs Jane Leeson, of Abthorpe, left £1 to the poor of this parish, which is given in money at Christmas. The Provost and Fellows of Magdalen College, Oxford, who are the principal landowners. The soil is clay; subsoil, freestone. The chief crops are wheat and beans. The area is 1,799 acres; rateable value, £3,345; the population in 1911 was 5021 in the ecclesiastical, and in 1921 was 409 in the civil parish.

By a Local Government Board Order, March 25, 1885, a detached part of this parish, known as Stocken farm, was amalgamated with Astwell and Falcutt.

Sexton, John Dytam.

Post, M.O., T & T.E.D Office Frederick George Shrimplin, sub-postmaster. Letters through Brackely

Public Elementary School, built with master’s residence, in 1853 and enlarged in 1902, for 136 children; Miss Ethel Minnie Barnes, head mistress; Miss Anne Page, assistant mistress; an infants’ school has since been erected from funds supplied by subscription

School Attendance Officer for Brackley District, Henry Swann, Culworth Banbury

Police Station, Harry Samuel Stock, constable

Carrier to Banbury Thomas W Pitts, mon, thurs & sat; Brackley, wed.

Helmdon Railway Station (L & NE), Albert Edward Tomlinson, station master

Railway Station (L.M & S) Frederick Smart, station master





Barnes William

Berry James, boot polish manufacturer

Reading Room (James Jessett, sec)

Barrett Miss Annie, The Knoll

Bloxham Matthew, farmer

Robson Charles, surveyor to Brackley & Middleton Cheyney Rural District Council

Barrett Mrs Mary, Fountain House

Brown Charles, tailor

Rose George, beer retailer

Bartlett Rev William M.A (rector), Rectory

Carpenter Herbert, farmer

Salmon John, farmer

French Misses, Jessamine House

Gascoigne William John, blacksmith

Shrimplin Fredk. Geo, grocer, Post office

Perridge Mrs, South Villa

Gibbons Charles Russell, coal merchant

Smith Alfred, Chequers inn

Seckington William, Ivy House

Golby Wm Harper, farmer, Manor farm

Smith William Francis, grocer

Young Mrs

*Gulliver Albert Jesse, farmer

Taylor Arthur, carpenter


Gulliver Harry, farmer Grange Farm

Watson Frank, farmer


Hawkes Emily Jane (Miss), grocer

Watson Luke, farmer


Holton William, saddler

Watson Mark, builder


Humphrey Arthur, provision dealer

West Albert, cycle agent


Humphrey Benjamin, butcher

Wood James (execs. of), farmers

Marked thus * farm 150 acres or over

Humphrey Benj. Jun., cattle dealer

*Wrighton Edwin (Mrs), farmer

Adams Thomas Rigby, baker

Jessett Henry, farmer


Asplin Arthur, farmer

Pitts Thomas W, carrier


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