Overstone is an Ancient Parish in the county of Northamptonshire.
Parish church: St Nicholas
Parish registers begin:
- Parish registers: 1680
- Bishop’s Transcripts: 1706
- Little Billing
- Great Billing
The Imperial Gazetteer of England & Wales 1870
OVERSTONE, a parish in Brixworth district, Northamptonshire; 3¾ miles N by W of Billing-Road r. station, and 4¾ NE of Northampton. Post-town, Northampton. Acres, 1,940. Real property, £2,721. Pop., 206. Houses, 46. The manor belonged formerly to the Brownlows; passed to J. Kipling, Esq.; belongs now to Lord Overstone; and gives him his title of Baron. O. House is Lord O.’s seat; is a handsome stone edifice, built after designs by W. M. Teulon; and stands in a fine park. The parish contains the headquarters and the armoury of the Overstone mounted rifles. The living is a rectory in the diocese of Peterborough. Value, £300. Patron, Lord Overstone. The church is a plain stone structure, in quasi-Gothic style. There is a charity school.
Source: The Imperial Gazetteer of England & Wales [Wilson, John M]. A. Fullarton & Co. N. d. c. [1870-72].
History, topography, and directory of Northamptonshire, by Francis Whellan and co. 1874
Overstone, or in early records Oveston and Ovyston, is bounded on the east by Mears Ashby, on the north and north-west by Holcot and Moulton, and on the south by Great Billing parishes. It contains 1719 acres, of the rateable value of £2670; the gross estimated rental is £2165. In 1801, its population was 173 ; in 1831, 203; in 1841, 187; in 1851, 226; in 1861, 206; and in 1871, 179 souls. The lordship, which was enclosed in 1727, occupies an elevated position. Morton mentions forty-five churches which might be seen on a clear day without the aid of a glass, from a hill between Great Billing and Overstone; but from the altered face of the country, many of them are not now visible. Mr Baker says “there was formerly a tree on the spot called Golden Ash, with steps up it, which being decayed, was destroyed a few years since by the wind.” The soil is various; a part of it is a red rich loam, particularly adapted for turnips. The lordship is famous for its growth of ash, it being considered amongst the best in the country. There are several quarries in the parish, one of which supplied stone for building the previous mansion.
Manor. — Overstone is not mentioned in the Domesday survey; the first mention of it is in the fourteenth of Henry II. (i 1 67), when Gilbert de Milers was certified to hold four hides of land here, which remained in the possession of his family until the fifth of Edward I. (1276), when we find it in the hands of the crown. In the tenth of Edward I. (1281), it was granted to hold at the will of the king, to Christiana de Mariscis, who in 1295 was found to hold it of the king in exchange for other lands. It was again in the possession of the crown in the twenty-sixth of Edward I. (1297), and was granted to Stephen le Chaundeler and Margaret his wife, Prince Edward’s nurse, to hold during the king’s pleasure ; in the seventh of Edward II. (1313) and within two years after, it was transferred on the same conditions to Martin de Ispanum. In the following year it was regranted to Christiana de Mariscis, who in the thirteenth year of this reign (1319) was certified to hold the manor of Oveston, at the annual rent of £50. Edward III. granted the manor to John Mantravers, junior, for life, but who soon after forfeited it ; it was then assigned to Richard Grey, for seven years, at the annual rent of £35, 12S. 11¾d., who dying before the expiration of the term, it was granted to Sir Walter Manny in fee, to hold by the accustomed services. This was after wards confirmed by a second grant, fixing its annual value at roo marks, and reserving for this and several other manors in Wales the nominal service of a rose annually in full satisfaction of £100. “Sir Walter,” says Mr Baker, “was born at Hainault, in the diocese of Cambray, and accompanying Queen Philippa into England, was appointed her carver; but forsaking the court for the camp, he became one of the most renowned warriors of the age. The monastery of the Carthusian order in London, now well known as the Charter House, was of his foundation ; and dying on the Thursday before St Wolstan, 1372, he was, pursuant to his will, interred there in the middle of the choir, with great pomp, the king and the princes, attended by a numerous retinue of prelates and barons, honouring the solemnity with their presence. His only son Thomas Manny, having been accidentally drowned in a well at Deptford in Kent, his barony and estates in no less than seventeen counties and the marches of Wales, exclusive of those which he held in right of his wife, became vested in Ann his daughter and heir, wife of John Hastings, Earl of Pembroke, from whom the manor descended to their son John, the last Earl, who was also accidentally killed in a tournament at Woodstock by Sir John St John ; and leaving no issue, it reverted again to the crown. In two years after, the king, for a fine of £20, made a grant of the manor to trustees, with license to settle it upon Sir John de Beaufort, eldest son of John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster, by Catherine Swinford, sister to the poet Chaucer, prior to her becoming his third wife, but whose children were legitimated by act of parliament in the twentieth of Richard II. (1397). This Sir John was created Earl of Somerset at the same time, and in the following year Marquis of Dorset. He was succeeded by his son and heir Henry, second Earl Somerset, a minor, who dying in his minority, the manor descended to his brother John, third Earl and first Duke of Somerset, who dying without male issue, his Northamptonshire estates descended to his daughter Margaret, successively by marriage, Countess of Richmond and Derby, the mother of King Henry VII., and ‘the brightest ornament of her sex in the fifteenth century.’” At her decease in 1509, the manor of Overstone once more fell into the hands of the crown. In the fourth of Edward VI. (1551), in consideration of £414, 10s. 4d, and of divers messuages, lands, &c., in the counties of Derby and Middlesex, the manor, advowson, lordship, &c., of Overstone, were granted, subject to a fee-farm rent of £8, 7s. 3d. annually, to Sir Thomas Smythe, one of the secretaries of state in this and the following reign of Elizabeth. Sir Thomas died in 1577, when the manor passed to his nephew, Sir John Wood, from whom it descended by co heiresses to Benjamin Mildmay, Esq., afterwards Lord Fitz- Walter, who sold it in 1672 to Edward Stratford, Esq., whose son, Henry Stratford, Esq., conveyed it in 1737 to Thomas Drury, Esq., created a baronet in 1738-9. Sir Thomas Drury purchased also the manor and advowson of Sywell, and the advowson of Little Billing, which, together with Overstone, descended to his two daughters and co-heiresses, in undivided moieties. Jacosa Catherina, the youngest daughter, in I770 purchased her late sister’s moiety, and married Sir Brownlow Cust, Bart, afterwards Lord Brownlow, who survived her, and upon the death of their only child, became possessed of the whole Drury estate in this county. Lord Brownlow sold his estate at Overstone to John Kipling, Esq., in 1791; and it was subsequently purchased in 1844 (except 130 acres belonging to the church) by the late Lewis Loyd, Esq., from whom it passed, in 1858, to his only son, Samuel Jones Loyd, the present Lord Overstone, who was born in 1791, married in 1829, Harriet, daughter of J. Wright, Esq., received his title in 1850, and is the present proprietor and lord of the manor.
Overstone Hall, the seat of Lord Overstone, was erected in 1862, on the site of the previous structure, which was built by Henry Strafford, Esq. The style of the present mansion is said to be that which prevailed in the time of Francis I. The external walls of the building are constructed of wrought ashler, and the window and door dressings, copings, cornices, carvings, and other parts exposed to the weather, are of Ketton stone. The walls throughout are built double, and quite independent of each other, the inside walls being of brick, tied to the outer walls by means of galvanised iron clamps. This fine mansion is situated a little east of the Kettering road, about five miles from Northampton, in a walled and well-timbered park of 800 acres. On the west side of the building terraces are constructed, overlooking the gentle slope down to the picturesque lake and rising grounds beyond. In the thirty-ninth of Henry III. (1254), a licence was granted to Gilbert de Millers to convert his wood here into a park, which was committed to the care of a keeper, whilst in possession of the crown. Edward I., on his way to Rockingham Castle in the year 1300, rested on the 22d of April at the “Old Manor House of Overstone.” The Village, which is small, is situated on rising ground, about four and a half miles north-east by north of Northampton. The Church, dedicated to St Nicholas, stands within the park, a short distance south of the village, and was erected in 1807 by John Kipling, Esq. ‘It is a small Gothic building, of Kingsthorpe freestone, and consists of a tower, containing two bells, a nave, and chancel. The interior is very neat, including a large parlour pew belonging to the lord of the manor. The east window of three lights is filled with German painted glass, representing our Saviour blessing the elements, above which figure there is a fine head of the prophet Isaiah ; St John preaching in the wilderness ; and the baptism of Christ with the descent of the Holy Ghost. The Old Church, of which no traces are left, “and its very site blended with the verdant lawn, ” stood in front of the manor house, and consisted of an embattled tower, nave, north aisle, and chancel. In the fifteenth century it contained no less than four altars dedicated to Sts Mary, Anne, Thomas, and John the Baptist. It was demolished in 1803, and its site, with that of the churchyard by which it was surrounded, are now joined to the park ; not a mound marks the spot where ” The rude forefathers of the hamlet sleep.” The benefice’is a rectory, in the deanery of Preston, rated in the king’s books at £12, 16s. 3d., and now worth £320 a year. Lord Overstone is patron ; and Rev. Edward Jonathan Birch, B.A., is the rector. The Rectory House is a neat building, pleasantly situated about one mile north of the village. There is a schoolhouse in the village, built in 1842, and a Sunday-school supported by Lord Overstone.
Post-Office. — Letters arrive through the Northampton office.
Orcrstone The Right Hon. Lord, Overflow Hall
Birch Rev. Edward Jon. B.A. rector
Britten George, farmer, Over-stone Farm
Cox Jn. farmer, Overstone Lodge
England Thomas, blacksmith
Palmer William, carpenter
Pell John, farmer, Overstone Farm
Wiggins Robert, farm-bailiff
Civil Registration District: Brixworth
Probate Court: Court of the Archdeaconry of Northampton
Rural Deanery: Haddon
Poor Law Union: Wellingborough