KEMPSTON, a parish in the hundred of Redbornestoke, county Bedford, 3 miles S.W. of Bedford, its post town. The village, which is large, is situated on the river Ouse. There is a meet at Kempston Wood for the Oakley hounds. It is mentioned in Domesday Survey as Camestone. Limestone is quarried for building purposes and for burning into lime.
The tithes were commuted for land and a money payment under an Enclosure Act in 1802. The living is a vicarage* in the diocese of Ely, value £252. The church, dedicated to All Saints, is situated near the bank of the river Ouse. It has a tower containing five bells, on three of which are inscriptions. The porch, on the south side, is supported by four pillars which have recently undergone repair, and open seats have been constructed in the aisles in lieu of the pews. It has a stone groined roof. An external staircase was added in the year 1837. During the repairs a curiously-formed cross was discovered, which was presented by the vicar to the Archaeological Society of Bedfordshire. The chancel, which has just been entirely renovated, has a timbered roof, a memorial stained-glass window to the Fitzpatrick family, and a monument to the family of William Carter, bearing date 1605. In the vestry are two panels of very ancient paintings representing the Fall in Paradise.
The parochial charities produce about £46 per annum. There is a National school for both sexes. The Wesleyans and Baptists have each a chapel.