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Braunstone

Description in 1877:
"BRAUNSTONE, a pleasant and picturesque village, 2 miles S.W. of Leicester, gives name to a township and chapelry in Glenfield parish, and in 1871 had 215 inhabitants, living in 39 houses, on about 1783 acres of land, partly of strong clay, and partly light and sandy, crossed by the Roman Fosseway, and bounded on the east by the River Soar, and on the north by the borough of Leicester. Captain R G Pochin, the lord of the manor and owner of most of the soil, resides at the HALL, a neat, plain mansion, which was built about 1775, by the late C. Winstanley, Esq. It stands in a well wooded park of 100 acres, and commands interesting views of Leicester and the adjacent country."
Whites's "History, Gazetteer and Directory of the Counties of Leicester and Rutland. 3rd Edition, 1877"

Cemeteries

Census

  • The parish was in the Enderby sub-district of the Blaby Registration District.
  • The 1851 Census for Leicestershire has been indexed by the Leicestershire & Rutland Family History Society. The whole index is available on microfiche. The society has also published it in print.
  • The table below gives census piece numbers, where known:
Census
Year
Piece No.
1861 R.G. 9 / 2258
1871 R.G. 10 / 3234
1891 R.G. 12 / 2501

Churches

You can also perform a more selective search for churches in the Braunstone area that are recorded in the GENUKI church database. This will also help identify other churches in nearby townships and/or parishes. You also have the option to see the location of the churches marked on a map.

Church History

  • The Anglican parish church is dedicated to Saint John the Baptist.
  • The church was built in the 12th century.
  • The church tower was repaired in 1704.
  • The church was restored in 1876 and again in 1885.
  • The church seats 120.

Church Records

Civil Registration

  • Civil Registration began in July, 1837.
  • The parish was in the Enderby sub-district of the Blaby Registration District.

Description and Travel

Braunstone is a village, a township and a parish (and was a Chapelry) which lie about 2 miles southwest of Leicester. The parish covers about 1,013 acres and is bounded on the east by the Soar River and on the north by the Borough of Leicester.

If you are planning a visit:

  • By automobile, Braunstone lies just north of the M69 motorway about 7 miles outside of Leicester city.
  • Read about the Braunstone Wood at the Woodland Trust site.
  • Be sure to visit the Braunstone village website.
You can see pictures of Braunstone which are provided by:

Historical Geography

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

History

  • Braunstone was established in the late 8th or early 9th Century at the southern edge of Leicester Forest.
  • Braunstone was given William the Conquerer to Hugh de Grantemesnil. The village consisted of 8 households and was worth about 60 shillings.
  • In 1596 over 240 acres of land was converted to pasture.
  • The parish saw an incredible growth after World War One as much land was converted to housing.

Manors

  • Braunstone Manor was built in approximately 1480 and is thought to have stood south of Braunstone Lane, close to the site of Old Hall Farm that was demolished in 1967.
  • After World War One, the British government forced the sale of many manorial lands. By November/December 1925 Major Winstanley had agreed to sell the Mansion House and Parklands and Plantations known as Braunstone Hall, as well as farmhouses, messages tenements buildings and cottages together with closes or parcels of land, plantations and allotments. The purchase price was £116,500.
  • The land surrounding Braunstone Hall was opened as a public park in the early 1930s. In 1932 Braunstone Hall opened as a 'Senior School'. However as younger families moved into the new housing estate the need for a Junior School was more essential and in 1933 The Braunstone Hall Junior School was opened. It served the community as a school until it was closed in 1996.
  • Braunstone Hall was the seat of the WANSTANLEY family for many generations. It was held by the POCHIN family in 1881, but a WANSTANLEY hel the manor in 1912.

Maps

  • See our Maps page for additional resources.
You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SK550020 (Lat/Lon: 52.612970, -1.189144), Braunstone which are provided by:

Military History

  • The Local Home Guard was based in Braunstone Hall, the park keeper being amongst their detachment. Mr. D.C. HAMILTON remembers being on sentry duty when a land mine was dropped and exploded on the park. The park keeper was on duty at the time of the incident and was duly dispatched to locate the mine, which he did when he fell into the crater in the black of night!
  • Between 1943 and 1945 the 168 Battery of the Royal Artillery and the 52nd/53rd Field Regiment Royal Artillery were stationed on the park. The 53rd Regiment came home from active service in Italy in June 1945.
  • On 14 February 1944, the American 82nd Airborne Division arrived in Braunstone. Major General Mathew B. Ridgeway was their Divisional Commander. Victoria Park was the major camp in Leicester with the Divisional Headquarters on Braunstone Park. The War Room was set up and staffed twenty four hours a day. The Nissen huts, erected in advance of their arrival, were to be their home for the coming months.

Names, Geographical

  • The name "Brantestone" or "Brant's Tun" is found in the 1086 Domesday Book.

Politics and Government

  • This place was an ancient Chapelry in Leicestershire. In late 1866, as many areas were turned into civil parishes, Braunstone became a Civil Parish, also.
  • The parish is in the ancient Sparkenhoe Hundred in the southern division of the county.
  • In 1881, the parish covered 1,489 acres. After the two changes below, it shrank to 1,013 acres.
  • In April, 1935, the parish was reduced by 750 acres to enlarge Leicester Civil Parish.
  • On that same date, the parish was enlarged by 274 acres by gaining part of Lubbesthorpe Civil Parish.
  • You can contact the local Parish Council regarding civic or political issues, but they are NOT staffed to assist you with family history research.
  • District governance is provided by the Blaby District Council.

Poor Houses, Poor Law etc.

  • As a result of the 1834 Poor Law Amendment Act, this parish became part of the Blaby Poorlaw Union.

Population

Year Inhabitants
1841 195
1871 215
1881 193
1891 169
1901 143
1911 125
1921 238
1931 6,997
1951 8,986
1961 13,174

Schools

  • Captain Ralph G. POCHIN built a National School here in 1868.
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