Description in 1877:
"Melton Mowbray is in Framland Hundred, and gives name to a township, parish, poor law union, county court, petty sessional and local board district, and the celebrated Melton Hunt. It is a polling place for the northern division of the county, and has attained considerable celebrity for its manufacture of pork pies, and is a pleasant and well built market town, pleasantly seated on the banks of the small river Eye, in a fertile open vale, 15 miles N. E. of Leicester, 10 miles N.W. of Oakham, 16 miles S.W. of Grantham, and 105 miles N. N. W. of London. Melton Mowbray parish, which comprises the townships of Burton Lazars, Freeby, Melton Mowbray, Sysonby, and Welby, in 1871 contained 5,559 persons, living in 1,123 houses, on 10,266 acres of land; of these, 5,033 persons, 1,020 houses, and about 3,300 acres, were in Melton Mowbray township. The soil is generally a black sandy loam, inclining to clay, and having a plentiful substratum of gravel. It had only 1,766 inhabitants in 1801, but in 1831 they had increased to 3,327, in 1841 to 3,740, in 1851 to 4,434, and in 1861 to 4,436. The return for 1871, given above included a number of persons visiting the steeple-chases, and also 126 paupers in the union workhouse."
[WHITE's "History, Gazetteer and Directory of the Counties of Leicester and Rutland," 3rd Edition. 1877]