Medmenham

"Medmenham is bounded, on the North and the East, by Great Marlow; on the South, by the Thames, which separates this parish from Berkshire; and on the West, by Hambleden; being about four miles long, and in the widest part two miles in breadth: containing 1700 acres of land, of which, 891 were computed to be arable, 277 meadow, and 592 woodland. In 1797, there were only about fifty-five houses, containing 270 inhabitants. It was then assessed to the land-tax, at 197l. 3s. 4d., being about 1l. 9s. per ann. on the rent." [The History and Antiquities of the County of Buckingham, by George Lipscomb, 1847]
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Bibliography

The following reference sources have been used in the construction of this page, and may be referred to for further detail. Most if not all of these volumes are available in the Reference section of the County Library in Aylesbury.

"Buckinghamshire Returns of the Census of Religious Worship 1851", Legg E. ed., 1991, ISBN 0 901198 27 7.
"Magna Britannia: Buckinghamshire", Lysons S. and Lysons D., 1806.
"The History and Antiquities of the County of Buckingham", Lipscomb G., 1847
"The Place-Names of Buckinghamshire", Mawer A. and Stenton F.M., 1925.
"The Victoria History of the Counties of England: Buckinghamshire", Page W. ed., 1905-1928
"War Memorials and War Graves: Marlow and area, Volume 12", Peter Quick.

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Cemeteries

The following Monumental Inscriptions are available as publications or as part of a Society library:

* = material held in a Society library is generally available for loan to all members either via post, or by collection at a meeting

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Census

In 1798 the Posse Comitatus listed 64 men between the ages of 16 and 60 in Medmenham.

In the earliest government census of 1801, there were 284 inhabitants in 69 families living in 58 houses recorded in Medmenham.

Census Year Population of Medmenham
1801* 284
1811* 323
1821* 369
1831* 384
1841 385
1851 401
1861 380
1871 310
1881 336
1891 320
1901 387

* = No names were recorded in census documents from 1801 to 1831.
** = Census documents from 1911 to 2001 are only available in summary form. Names are witheld under the 100 year rule.

Microfilm copies of all census enumerators' notebooks for 1841 to 1891 are held at the Local Studies Libraries at Aylesbury and Milton Keynes, as well as centrally at the PRO. A table of 19th century census headcount by parish is printed in the VCH of Bucks, Vol.2, pp 96-101.

Availability of census transcripts and indexes.

  • 1851 - Full transcripts and indexes for Buckinghamshire are available on CD-ROM, hard copy and microfiche from the Buckinghamshire Family History Society.
  • 1861 - Available on CD-ROM with advanced search and mapping capabilities etc. from the Buckinghamshire Genealogical Society.
  • 1881
    • Available on CD-ROM from the Church of the Latter Day Saints, as part of the National 1881 Census Index.
    • Available on CD-ROM for Buckinghamshire, with advanced search and mapping capabilities etc. from Drake Software.
  • 1891 - Available on CD-ROM with advanced search and mapping capabilities etc. from the Buckinghamshire Genealogical Society.

Churches

You can also perform a more selective search for churches in the Medmenham area or see them printed on a map.

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Church History

Details of the stained glass in the church can be found on the following web sites (the site includes many photos):

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Church Records

The original copies of the parish registers for St Peter, Medmenham have been deposited in the Buckinghamshire Record Office in Aylesbury, and they hold the following years:

Event Dates covered
Christenings 1654 - 1882
Marriages 1654 - 1839
Banns 1890 - 1939
Burials 1654 - 1964

Copies or indexes to the parish registers are available from societies as follows:

Event
Society Library*
Dates covered
Society
Christenings
1575 - 1930
Buckinghamshire Genealogical Society
Marriages
1575 - 1930
Buckinghamshire Genealogical Society
Burials
1575 - 1930
Buckinghamshire Genealogical Society

* = material held in a Society library is generally available for loan to all members either via post, or by collection at a meeting

An ecclesiastical census was carried out throughout England on 30 March 1851 to record the attendance at all places of worship. These returns are in the Buckinghamshire Record Office and have been published by the Buckinghamshire Record Society (vol 27). The returns for Medmenham showed the following numbers:

Church Attendance
Medmenham, St Peter 92 - Morning General Congregation
52 - Morning Sunday Scholars
144 - Morning Total

83 - Afternoon General Congregation
50 - Afternoon Sunday Scholars
133 - Afternoon Total

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Description and Travel

You can see pictures of Medmenham which are provided by:

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Gazetteers

Ask for a calculation of the distance from Medmenham to another place.

Click here for a list of nearby places.

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Historical Geography

You can see the administrative areas in which Medmenham has been placed at times in the past. Select one to see a link to a map of that particular area.

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History

Medmenham was described in 1806 in "Magna Britannia" as follows:

MEDMENHAM, in the hundred of Desborough and deanery of Wycombe, lies about three miles from Marlow, on the road to Henley. At this place was an abbey of Cistercian monks, founded by Hugh de Bolebec, as a cell to the larger monastery at Woburn, which was also of his foundation. The royal charter was not obtained till the year 1200, which was after the founder's death. Its revenues, which consisted chiefly of the manor and rectory of Medmenham, were valued in 1536, at 20 l. 6s. 2d per annum. The abbey, with its possessions, was then given to the abbot and convent of Bisham; the general dissolution of monasteries, taking place shortly afterwards, the manor of Medmenham, and the site of the abbey, were granted in 1547, to Thomas and Robert Moore; this estate was conveyed by the Moores in 1558 to the family of Duffield, who resided at the abbey, and continued in possession till 1778, when the site of the abbey was purchased by John Morton esq. chief justice of Chester, and was sold by his widow, in 1786, to the present proprietor, Robert Scott esq. Browne Willis speaks of part of the north aisle of the conventual church, as standing in his time; part of a single column only is now to be seen. Some buildings, in imitation of ruins, have been of late years erected on the site of the abbey, and are now almost overgrown with ivy.

Danesfield, the seat of Robert Scott esq. so called from an ancient circular entrenchment of that name near the house, was the property of John Morton esq. above-mentioned. It stands in a beautiful situation, on a bank which over-hangs the river.

The manor of Brock, or Medmenham, which was retained by the founder, passed by female heirs to the families of Vere, Warren, Fitz-alan and Beauchamp. It was afterwards in the Poles; and after having been several times forfeited and restored, was given, in 1553, to the Rices, of whom it was purchased, in 1560, by John Borlase esq. Having passed with Little-Marlow, to Sir John Borlase Warren K.B. it was sold, in 1781, to the guardians of William Lee Antonie esq. the present proprietor. The Borlases had a seat at Bockmer, in this parish, now a farm.

An estate in Medmenham, called Whittington farm, was forfeited to the crown in the reign of Charles I. and at the instance of Archbishop Laud given to the university of Oxford, for the maintenance of scholars from the islands of Guernsey and Jersey: it is now held on lease by Sir William Clayton, at a reserved rent of 20 l. per annum.

In the parish church are some memorials of the Duffields. The impropriation of the great tithes, and advowson of the vicarage, have passed with the abbey estate, and are now the property of Mr. Scott. The vicar has the great tithes of 500 acres of land. At Hallowick, near Wood-end, a hamlet of this parish, was formerly a chapel.

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Names, Geographical

The name of Medmenham derives from the old english words medeme + ham, and means 'moderate-sized homestead'.