[Transcribed from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland 1868]
by Colin Hinson ©2013
"LITTLE DOWNHAM, (or Downham) a parish in the hundred of Ely, in the county of Cambridge, 3 miles north of Ely, its post town. It is a station on the Great-Eastern railway. The village, which is considerable, is situated on the road to Wisbech. The living is a rectory* in the diocese of Ely, value £1,108, in the patronage of the bishop. The church, dedicated to St. Leonard, is an ancient stone and brick structure, with turret and four small spires, having a vane on each. The register commences in 1720. The Baptists and Wesleyans have each a chapel, and there is a free school. Downham was formerly the principal diocesan residence, but since the arrest of Bishop Wren, by order of parliament, in 1642, it has fallen into decay. The remains of the palace built by Bishop Cox are now used as barns and granaries.
[Transcribed and edited information from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland - 1868]