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"Mattersey, or Mattersea, is a genteel and very retired village and parish, on the western bank of the Idle, 4 miles south-south-east from Bawtry, and 6 miles north by west from Retford. It stands on a pleasant elevation, and has several handsome mansions. It comprises Blaco Hill, one mile south of Mattersey; Mattersey Abbey, one mile east; Mattersey Grange, one mile west; which are large farms, and Mattersey Thorpe, a hamlet half a mile west of the village. The parish is about 1½ miles in length, and contains 493 inhabitants and 2,561 acres of land, which was enclosed by an Act passed in 1770. The Rev. Christopher Nevile is the principal owner, and lord of the manor. The Abbey Farm, 150 acres, belongs to John Wormald Esq., and Mr John Walker senior, and Mr John Walker junior have estates here. The church, dedicated to All Saints, is a handsome gothic edifice, in excellent preservation, and is a most pleasing object in the village. It has some curious carvings, which were discovered about 70 years ago, under the old pavement of the chancel, one of which represents the benevolent action of St Martin dividing his cloak. It had a chantry dedicated to St John the Baptist, and in the reign of Edward I was appropriated to Mattersey Abbey, to make amends for some losses the monks had sustained by fire." [WHITE's "Directory of Nottinghamshire," 1853]


  • A Cemetery was formed in the parish around 1900 and it covered half an acre. The Cemetery is north-west of the village on Thorpe Road.
  • The Cemetery is managed by the Burial Board of the local Mattersey Parish Council.


  • The parish was in the Gringley sub-district of the East Retford Registration District.
  • The table below gives census piece numbers, where known:
CensusYear Piece No.
1841 H.O. 107 / 851
1851 H.O. 107 / 2121
1861 R.G. 9 / 2412
1891 R.G. 12 / 2638


You can also perform a more selective search for churches in the Mattersey 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

  • A Priory was founded here by Roger de Mattersey, circa 1185. The Priory was destroyed by fire in 1279. Although largely rebuilt, it was destroyed again during the English Civil War by Parliamentary troops. The remains can be found about a mile west of the village.
  • English Heritage has a report and history of the priory.
  • The Anglican parish church is dedicated to All Saints. The church is on Abbey lane.
  • The church was built in the 14th century.
  • The church was restored in 1866.
  • The church seats 230.
  • Richard CROFT has a photograph of All Saints Church on Geo-graph, taken in June, 2011.
  • There are photographs of items inside the church at Flickr.

Church Records

  • The Anglican parish register dates from 1540.
  • The church was in the rural #1 deanery of Retford.
  • Richard CROFT has a photograph of the old Pentecostal chapel of 1792 on Geo-graph, taken in June, 2011.
  • The Wesleyan Methodists had a chapel here in 1881.

Civil Registration

  • The parish was in the Gringley sub-district of the East Retford Registration District.
  • Civil Registration started in July, 1837.

Description and Travel

This village and parish are about 145 miles north of London, 6 miles north of Retford and 4 miles south-east of Bawtry. The parish covers 2,344 acres and is bordered on the north and east by the River Idle. Mattersey Thorpe is a hamlet about one mile north-west of the village and Blaco Hill is a tiny hamlet one mile south-east.

The village name is often spelled as "Mattersea". If you are planning a visit:

  • By automobile, the village is just north off of the A52 trunk road, heading east out of Nottingham.
  • The local Mattersey Parish Council has an informative website. The newsletters on the site make for interesting reading. Please do NOT ask them to help with family history searches.
You can see pictures of Mattersey which are provided by:


Historical Geography

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


  • On January 21, 1999, four people died when a jet from RAF Cottesmore collided with a Cessna airplane over the village.


  • See our Maps page for additional resources.
You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SK689893 (Lat/Lon: 53.396032, -0.965291), Mattersey which are provided by:

Politics and Government

  • This place was an ancient parish in Nottinghamshire and became a modern Civil Parish when those were established.
  • The parish was in the Hatfield division of the ancient Bassetlaw Wapentake in the northern division of the county.

Poor Houses, Poor Law etc.

  • Bastardy cases would be heard at the Retford petty session hearings held in West Retford.
  • After the Poor Law Amendment Act reforms of 1834, this parish became a part of the East Retford Poor Law Union.


Year Population
1801 327
1811 351
1841 510
1851 493
1871 368
1881 342
1891 322
1901 371


  • There was a National School here by 1869.
  • The School had an endowment to allow 7 boys to be taught free.