"Gayhurst is bounded, on the North, by Stoke Goldington; on the East, by Tyringham; on the South, by Newport Pagnell and Lathbury; and on the West, by Hanslape and Little Linford. The river Ouse runs through this parish, separating it from Newport Pagnell; and, after a serpentine course of six miles, re-enters Gayhurst, dividing it likewise from the village of Tyringham." [The History and Antiquities of the County of Buckingham, by George Lipscomb, 1847]


The following reference sources have been used in the construction of this page, and may be referred to for further detail. Most if not all of these volumes are available in the Reference section of the County Library in Aylesbury.

"Buckinghamshire Contributions for Ireland 1642", Wilson J., 1983.
"Buckinghamshire Returns of the Census of Religious Worship 1851", Legg E. ed., 1991, ISBN 0 901198 27 7.
"Magna Britannia: Buckinghamshire", Lysons S. and Lysons D., 1806.
"The History and Antiquities of the County of Buckingham", Lipscomb G., 1847
"The Place-Names of Buckinghamshire", Mawer A. and Stenton F.M., 1925.
"The Victoria History of the Counties of England: Buckinghamshire", Page W. ed., 1905-1928
"War Memorials and War Graves: Newport Hundred, Volume 1", Peter Quick.



  • War memorials for Gayhurst (recorded on the Stoke Goldington memorial) have been transcribed by Peter Quick, and published in a booklet entitled "War Memorials and War Graves: Newport Hundred, Volume 1", available from the Buckinghamshire Genealogical Society.
  • War memorial details are also available online on the Roll of Honour web site.



In 1642 there were 35 people named in the tax returns for contributions for Ireland. Between them they were assessed at £4.18.6 of which sum The Lady Digbie contributed £3.0.0

In 1798 the Posse Comitatus listed 18 men between the ages of 16 and 60 in Gayhurst.

In the earliest government census of 1801, there were 89 inhabitants in 15 families living in 11 houses recorded in Gayhurst.

Census Year Population of Gayhurst
1801* 89
1811* 89
1821* 90
1831* 118
1841 116
1851 88
1861 109
1871 95
1881 91
1891 91
1901 104

* = No names were recorded in census documents from 1801 to 1831.
** = Census documents from 1911 to 2001 are only available in summary form. Names are witheld under the 100 year rule.

Microfilm copies of all census enumerators' notebooks for 1841 to 1891 are held at the Local Studies Libraries at Aylesbury and Milton Keynes, as well as centrally at the PRO. A table of 19th century census headcount by parish is printed in the VCH of Bucks, Vol.2, pp 96-101.

Availability of census transcripts and indexes.


Church Records

The original copies of the parish registers for St Peter, Gayhurst have been deposited in the Buckinghamshire Record Office in Aylesbury, and they hold the following years:

Event Dates covered
Christenings 1728 - 1812
Marriages 1728 - 1836
Burials 1728 - 1812

Copies or indexes to the parish registers are available from societies as follows:

Society Library*
Dates covered
1728 - 1837
Buckinghamshire Genealogical Society

* = material held in a Society library is generally available for loan to all members either via post, or by collection at a meeting

An ecclesiastical census was carried out throughout England on 30 March 1851 to record the attendance at all places of worship. These returns are in the Buckinghamshire Record Office and have been published by the Buckinghamshire Record Society (vol 27). The returns for Gayhurst showed the following numbers:

Church Attendance
Gayhurst, St Peter 60 - Afternoon General Congregation
8 - Afternoon Sunday Scholars
68 - Afternoon Total


Description & Travel

You can see pictures of Gayhurst which are provided by:




Historical Geography

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



Gayhurst was described in 1806 in "Magna Britannia" as follows:

GOTHURST, or as it is now called, GAYHURST, in the hundred and deanery of Newport, lies about three miles from Newport-Pagnell, near the road to Northampton. The manor, at the time of the Norman Survey, was held under the bishop of Baieux, by Robert de Noadariis, or Nowers, whose family not long afterwards became possessed of it in their own right. On the death of the last heir male in 1408, it passed by marriage to Sir Richard Neville, and from the Nevilles, by another female heir, to the family of Mulso, about the middle of the sixteenth century. The only daughter of William Mulso, who died in 1601, married Sir Everard Digby, who forfeited his life for being concerned in that diabolical conspiracy, the gunpowder plot. He guarded in some measure against the consequences of failure and detection, by making over his estates in trust for his infant son, by which means he secured them from confiscation: this son, the celebrated Sir Kenelm Digby, was born at Gothurst in 1603. John Digby, only surviving son of Sir Kenelm, left two daughters, married to John Conway and Richard Mostyn esq. who having procured an act of parliament for that purpose, sold Gothurst, in 1704, to the son of Lord Keeper Wrighte. It is now the property and seat of Miss Wrighte, only daughter and heir of the late George Wrighte esq. The manor-house was built in the reign of Queen Elizabeth, and has undergone little alteration as to its external appearance; the great part of the inside has been modernized. Some portraits of the Digby family still remain here; among which is that of Sir Everard, and one inscribed John Digby, which Mr. Pennant conjectures nevertheless to have been meant for Sir Kenelm in his younger days, but there seems no good reason for supposing why it should not have been his son John Digby. In the hall are two bronze busts of Venetia Lady Digby, wife of Sir Kenelm, much admired for their workmanship. There is a beautiful miniature of this lady, by Peter Oliver, at Strawberry-Hill, another of Sir Kenelm and his lady, in one piece, after Vandyke, and singularly fine one of Lady Lucy, her mother, by Isaac Oliver; which were purchased by the late Earl of Orford, of Mr. Watkin Williams, and had been found in the garret of an old house in Wales. At Gothurst are also several portraits of the present proprietors family, among which are Lord Keeper Wrighte and Sir Joseph Jekyl, Master of the Rolls. The parish church, in which was an ancient French inscription for one of the family of Nowers, was pulled down in 1725: the present building was completed in 1728, with a sum of money bequeathed for that purpose by Mr. Wrighte, who purchased the manor. In the church are whole length figures in white marble, of the Lord Keeper, in his robes, and his son, George Wrighte esq. clerk of the crown, in his official dress. An act of Parliament passed in the year 1712, for ascertaining the glebe, tithes, and profits of the rectory: in 1736 it was consolidated with Stoke-Goldington; Miss Wrighte is patroness.



You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SP850467 (Lat/Lon: 52.112102, -0.76017), Gayhurst which are provided by:


Names, Geographical

The name Gayhurst derives from the words gat, hyrst and means 'goats' wood'.