"The parish of Ravenston, Ravenstone, or Rowenstone, adjoins Olney on the west, and, like that parish, is bounded on the north by Northamptonshire, and on the south by the river Ouse. Its area is 2230 acres; population about 450; rateable value £2023. The soil is various - clay, gravel, and loam. Limestone is quarried here, and occasionally used for building purposes. There are about 200 acres of woodland. The Village is large and stands about 3 miles W. by S. from Olney, and 5 miles N.N.W. from Newport Pagnell. The surface in the northern portion of the parish is somewhat undulated, but is generally flat towards the Ouse on the south." [History and Topography of Buckinghamshire, by James Joseph Sheahan, 1862]



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.
"History and Topography of Buckinghamshire", Sheahan, James Joseph, 1862
"Magna Britannia: Buckinghamshire", Lysons S. and Lysons D., 1806.
"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, Bucks, Volume 1", Peter Quick.



The following Monumental Inscriptions are available as publications or as part of a Society library:

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



In 1642 there were 63 people named in the tax returns for contributions for Ireland. Between them they were assessed at £3.6.1 of which sum Nicholas Conney minister contributed £0.10.0

In 1798 the Posse Comitatus listed 82 men between the ages of 16 and 60 in Ravenstone.

In the earliest government census of 1801, there were 381 inhabitants in 81 families living in 73 houses recorded in Ravenstone.

Census YearPopulation of Ravenstone

* = 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 History

Details of the stained glass in the church can be found on the following web sites (the site includes many photos):


Church Records

The original copies of the parish registers for All Saints, Ravenstone have been deposited in the Buckinghamshire Record Office in Aylesbury, and they hold the following years:

EventDates covered
Christenings1568 - 1873
Marriages1568 - 1836
Banns1814 - 1973
Burials1568 - 1908

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

Society Library*
Dates covered
1568 - 1812
Buckinghamshire Genealogical Society
1568 - 1812
Buckinghamshire Genealogical Society
1568 - 1812
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 Ravenstone showed the following numbers:

All Saints
145 - Morning General Congregation
60 - Morning Sunday Scholars
205 - Morning Total

134 - Evening General Congregation
55 - Evening Sunday Scholars
189 - Evening Total

Independent and Baptist
100 - Morning General Congregation

Description & Travel

You can see pictures of Ravenstone which are provided by:




Historical Geography

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



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

RAVENSTON, in the hundred and deanery of Newport, lies on the borders of Northamptonshire, nearly six miles north of Newport-Pagnell, and about three miles west of Olney. A priory of Austin canons was founded at this place by King Henry III. in the year 1255. It was suppressed in 1525, and given to Cardinal Wolsey, but afterwards resumed by the crown, and by three successive grants passed to Sir Francis Bryan, Sir Robert Throckmorton, and Sir Moyle Finch: the last grant was in the reign of Queen Elizabeth, and bears the date 1591. It is now the property of George Earl of Winchelsea and Nottingham a descendant of the last-mentioned grantee. There are no remains of the conventual buildings. The manor was anciently in the Giffards and Wahuls; of the latter it was purchased by Peter de Chaceport, archdeacon of Wells and master of the wardrobe, whose son Henry gave it to King Henry III. That monarch granted it, with the advowson of the rectory to his newly founded convent at this place, and it has ever since been annexed to the priory estate. Ravenston was for some time a seat of the family of Finch. The great Lord Chancellor Nottingham was described as of this place when he was created a baronet in 1660; he attained the highest honors of his profession, and was advanced to an earldom. The late learned Mr. Justice Blackstone speaks in the highest terms of his abilities and integrity, and calls him a thorough master and zealous defender of the laws and constitution of his country: his eloquence was held in such esteem by his contemporaries, that it obtained him the appellation of the English Roscius and the English Cicero. Lord Chancellor Nottingham died in 1682, and was buried at Ravenston, where a most magnificent monument ws erected to his memory by his son, with his effigies finely executed in white marble, in his chancellor's robes, reclining under a canopy supported by four pillars of black marble of the Corinthian order. The epitaph is printed in Collin's Peerage.

The Earl of Winchelsea is impropriator of the great tithes which belonged to the priory, and patron of the vicarage. Lord Chancellor Nottingham having purchased the fee farm rent of the manor of Ravenston, amounting to 84 l. per ann. gave it as an endowment for the vicarage. He founded a hospital also at this place for six poor men and six poor women, who have a weekly allowance of 3s. 6d. each, and a gown every year. The chancellor also gave 10 l. per ann. towards ornamenting the church. Mr. Chapman, the late vicar, founded a charity school for all the poor children of this parish, for which he intended a large endowment, but it is disputed in chancery by his heirs; the master receives at present a salary of 12 l. per annum.

Further details on Ravenstone can be found on the www.ravenstone.org.uk web site



You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SP849507 (Lat/Lon: 52.148071, -0.760633), Ravenstone which are provided by:


Names, Geographical

The name Ravenstone derives from the persons name of Hræfn or Hrafn (Old Scandinavian name or possibly Old English) + the old english tun, and means "Hræfn's, or Hrafn's, farm".