"Barnby in the Willows is a small village and parish, on the River Witham, which divides it from Lincolnshire, 4 miles east-south-east of Newark. It has 294 inhabitants, and 1,703 acres of land at the rateable value of £2,339 19s 11d. The principal land owners are Henry Gilbert Esq., J. Handley Esq., John Oliver, John Birlett, William Daybell, George Steele and the Rev. John Steele, besides several smaller freeholders, the former of whom built Barnby Manor in 1848, a large neat residence.
The church is a plain structure, with a tower, and dedicated to All Saints. It was repaired and partly new-pewed in 1843. The vicarage, valued in the King's books at £5 9s 9½d, is in the patronage of Southwell Collegiate Church, and the incumbency of the Rev. John Loxley M.A. The tithes were commuted in 1841, the great tithe for £140. Henry Gilbert Esq. has a one-sixth part, and Henry Nevile a one-fifth part. The small tithe was commuted for £219 to the vicar. A neat national school for boys and girls was erected in 1850, by subscription, aided by a grant from the National Society. A neat Methodist Chapel was built in 1825." [WHITE's "Directory of Nottinghamshire," 1853]