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Help and advice for Clifton

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"Clifton with Glapton Parish. Clifton is a small village on the south bank of the Trent, four miles south west of Nottingham, and contains a number of rural cottages, finely shaded with trees, and also a few villa-looking residences. Near it is Clifton Hall, the beautiful seat of Sir Juckes Granville Juckes Clifton, Bart, deeply embosomed in ancient groves of oak, fir and elm, and commanding most extensive prospects over the Trent, the town of Nottingham, and the adjacent counties of Derbyshire and Leicestershire. You are led to this delightful spot from Nottingham, through Clifton Grove, an avenue of trees a mile in length, upon the gentle swells of the earth covered with green sward, and broad enough for six carriages to drive abreast. Near the upper end of this avenue, the cliff overhangs the Trent, whose silver streams meanders most pleasingly around it. "Here", we are told by Throsby, "tradition says, the Clifton Beauty, who was debauched and murdered by her sweetheart, was hurled down the precipice into her watery grave". The place has long been held in great veneration by lovers, and the story is the subject of one of the earliest and longest poems of the late Henry Kirk White, who often visited the spot.." The Hall, which has been the seat of the Clifton family for many centuries, stands upon a rock of gypsum, suriously interspersed in many places by beautiful spar. The centre of the principal front is ornamented by ten handsome columns of the Doric order. The church, dedicated to St Mary, stands close to the mansion, and though ancient, is yet in good preservation. In 1846 it was restored and beautified at the sole expense of the patron, Sir J.G.J. Clifton, Bart. It is built in the form of a cross, with a lofty tower in which are four bells. Here is the family vault of the Cliftons, in which are deposited several generations, its entrance bearing the date of 1632. The Rectory is valued in the King's books at £21 6s 10½d, now at £405, and has about 150 acres of glebe." [WHITE's "Directory of Nottinghamshire," 1853]



  • The parish was in the Wilford sub-district of the Basford Registration District.
  • The table below gives census piece numbers, where known:
CensusYear Piece No.
1851 H.O. 107 / 2128
1861 R.G. 9 / 2446
1891 R.G. 12 / 2680


You can also perform a more selective search for churches in the Clifton 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 church is dedicated to Saint Mary.
  • The church was restored in 1884.
  • Alan MURRAY-RUST has a photograph of St Mary's Church on Geo-graph, taken in May, 2009.

Church Records

  • The Anglican parish registers date from 1538.
  • The parish was in the rural deanery of West Bingham.

Civil Registration

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

Description and Travel

Clifton with Clapton is a village and a parish on the south-east bank of the River Trent about 4 miles south-west of Nottingham and 16 miles north-east of Ashby-de-la-Zouch.

  • There is extensive bus service from Nottingham city centre.
  • Check the Village website for bus schedules and other information.
You can see pictures of Clifton which are provided by:


Historical Geography

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

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


  • This place is mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1086 as having a church and a mill
  • May Day festivities have a long tradition in Clifton. The Nottingham Daily Express reported this in 1913:
"One of the most charming survivals of the days that we recall as more picturesque than ours is the ancient May Day Festival in Clifton. And for a more appropriately beautiful setting than the old village green you could search the whole county in vain." That year, the May Queen was Dorothy Moss, who was led in a procession to the centre of the green, while the maypole itself was carried by "six stalwart scarlet and white-clad henchmen". The article continued: "Her Majesty then gave the signal for the start of the revels, which were participated in by 50 or 60 children." They performed the age-old maypole dances, the Spider's Web, the Water Wheel and the Gipsies' Tent, the Single Plait and Double Plait.
  • The Nottingham Journal reported this in 1929:
"Clifton is one of the few English villages in which the traditional ceremonies are carried out in their entirety."


  • In 1881, Clifton Hall was the seat of Sir Juckes Granville Juckes Clifton, Bart, commanding extensive views over the Trent, the town of Nottingham, and the adjacent counties of Derbyshire and Leicestershire.
  • The CLIFTON family held Clifton Hall for 700 years.
  • Karen Chantrey WOOD has a photograph of Clifton Hall on Geo-graph, taken in April, 2000.


  • See our Maps page for additional resources.
You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SK541348 (Lat/Lon: 52.907895, -1.197031), Clifton which are provided by:

Military History

  • In 1885 this parish was home to Sergt.-Major John WELLS, a drill instructor to the South Notts Yeomanry.

Politics and Government

  • This place was an ancient parish in county Nottingham.
  • The parish was in the ancient Rushcliffe Wapentake (Hundred) in the southern division of the county.
  • In April, 1935, this Civil Parish was enlarged by 119 acres incorporated after the abolition of Chilwell Civil Parish.
  • In April, 1952, this Civil Parish was abolished and all 379 acres were amalgamated into Barton in Fabis Civil Parish.
  • Currently, the village and parish are managed as part of the Nottingham City Council.

Poor Houses, Poor Law etc.

  • The Common Land was enclosed here in 1756.
  • Bastardy cases would be heard in the Nottingham petty session hearings.
  • After the Poor Law Amendment Act reforms of 1834, this parish became a part of the Basford Poor Law Union.
  • In 1709 George WELLS founded Almshouses for five aged women. These were still operating in 1885.


Year Inhabitants
1801 381
1811 399
1841 419
1851 401
1871 390
1881 391
1901 383
1911 350