Brackley St Peter, Northamptonshire Family History Guide

Brackley St Peter is an Ancient Parish and a market town in the county of Northamptonshire. Brackley St James is a chapelry of Brackley St Peter.

Other places in the parish include: Halse and Brackley Hatch.

Alternative names: St Peter Brackley

Parish church:

Parish registers begin:

  • Parish registers: 1560
  • Bishop’s Transcripts: 1706

Nonconformists include: Independent/Congregational and Wesleyan Methodist.

Adjacent Parishes

  • Radstone
  • Biddlesden
  • Westbury
  • Whitfield
  • Syresham
  • Brackley St James
  • Evenley
  • Farthinghoe
  • Helmdon with Stuchbury
  • Luffield Abbey
  • Greatworth
  • Hinton in the Hedges with Steane

Historical Descriptions

The Imperial Gazetteer of England & Wales 1870

BRACKLEY, a small town, two parishes, a subdistrict, and a district, in Northampton. The town stands on a descent at the confluence of two head-streams of the river Ouse, adjacent to the Banbury and Bletchley railway, 9¾ miles ESE of Banbury. It was a place of note in the times of the Saxons; was nearly destroyed by the Danes; rose again to importance; and was walled and had a castle. Tournaments were held in its vicinity, at Bayard's Green, in 1249 and subsequent years; and the barons met at it, in 1264, to treat with King John. The town consists mainly of a single street, nearly a mile long; and contains some good houses, chiefly built of stone. An ancient cross, 28 feet high, ornate and curious, stood in its centre, and was taken down in 1706 The town hall, an edifice resting on arches, occupies the site of the cross; and was erected, in 1706, by the Duke of Bridgewater, at a cost of £2,000. St. John's hospital, now a ruin, was founded, in the time of Henry I., by Robert le Bossu, Earl of Leicester, for a master and six fellows; passed to Magdalene College, Oxford; and was a retreat of the members of that college during the conflicts between King John and his barons. The chapel of it still shows interesting architectural features, and once had tombs of several noblemen; and the hall has been rebuilt, and contains 105 blazoned shields of prelates and distinguished laymen. Another hospital, dedicated to St. Leonard, stood in the town, but has disappeared. St. Peter's church is chiefly early English; and has a lofty tower, and a Norman font. St. James church gave place, some years ago, to a cemetery-chapel in connexion with its burying-ground. There are three dissenting chapels, a free grammar school, alms-houses, and a workhouse the last erected at a cost of £6,000 The town has a head post office, a railway station with telegraph, two banking offices, and two chief inns. A weekly market is held on Wednesday; and fairs on the Wednesday after 25 Feb., 19 April, the Wednesday after 22 June, the Wednesday after 11 Oct., and 11 Dec. A great wool trade flourished in the reign of Edward III., and for some time before and after; but the chief trade now is in lace and shoes. The town claims to have been incorporated by Henry III.; it sent two members to parliament from the time of Edward VI. till disfranchised by the act of 1832; and it still has nominally a corporation, but is not regulated by the Corporation act. It is a polling-place; has a building of 1851 for police station and petty sessions; and it gives the title of Viscount to the Earl of Ellesmere. Samuel Clarke, the famous orientalist, a contributor to Walton's "Polyglot," was a native. Pop., 2,239. Houses, 497.

The two parishes are St. Peter and St. James; and they jointly include all the town. Acres of St. Peter, 3,717; of St. James, 420. Real property of St. Peter, £4,713; of St. James, £2,581. Pop. of St. Peter, 1,615. Houses, 354. Pop. of St. James, 768. Houses, 154. The property is subdivided. The livings are conjoint St. Peter a vicarage, St. James a p. curacy in the diocese of Peterborough. Value, £359. Patron, the Earl of Ellesmere. The subdistrict contains also the parishes of Kings-Sutton, Newbottle, Aynho, Croughton, Hinton-in-the-Hedges, Steen, Evenly, Whitfield, Mixbury, Finmere, Westbury, and Turweston, the two last electorally in Bucks, the previous two electorally in Oxford. Acres, 31,630. Pop., 7,656. Houses, 1,687. The district includes also the subdistrict of Sulgrave, containing the parishes of Sulgrave, Helmdon, Morton-Pinkney, Eydon, Culworth, Thorpe-Mandeville, Stutchbury, Greatworth, Marston-St. Lawrence, Thenford, Farthinghoe, Radstone, Syresham, and Biddlesdon, the last electorally in Bucks,-and part of Wappenham. Acres of the district, 58,769. Poor-rates in 1866, £9,908. Pop. in 1861, 13,471. Houses, 3,010. Marriages in 1866, 101; births, 435, of which 29 were illegitimate; deaths, 250, of which 90 were at ages under 5 years, and 12 at ages above 85. Marriages in the ten years 1851-60, 989; births, 4,435; deaths, 2,848. The places of worship in 1851 were 27 of the Church of England, with 6,600 sittings; 2 of Independents, with 432 s.; 5 of Baptists, with 1,116 s.; 1 of Quakers, with 107 s.; 6 of Primitive Methodists, with 1,192 s.; 1 of Wesleyan Reformers, with 100 s.; and 2 of Moravians, with 290 s. The schools were 24 public day schools, with 1,238 scholars; 19-private day schools, with 388 s.; and 32 Sunday schools, with 2,138 s.

Source: The Imperial Gazetteer of England & Wales [Wilson, John M]. A. Fullarton & Co. N. d. c. [1870-72].


Kelly Post Office Directory of Northamptonshire 1869 - Google Books

Kelly Post Office Directory of Northamptonshire 1885 -


County: Northamptonshire
Civil Registration District: Brackley
Probate Court: Court of the Archdeaconry of Northampton
Diocese: Peterborough
Rural Deanery: Brackley
Poor Law Union: Brackley
Hundred: King's Sutton
Province: Canterbury