(including the hamlets of Eythrope, Westcott, Wormstone and Woodham)


"This parish, including several hamlets, extends over an area of 6010 acres. Population, 1743; rateable value of Waddesdon township, £7313. The soil is a stiff clay, with various loams, and strata of limestone. There are about 100 acres of woodland. The Village is large and seated on rising ground, about 6 miles W.N.W. from Aylesbury, on one of the principal roads through the county, viz. that from London, through Aylesbury to Bicester, &c. The old Roman military road, the Akeman Street passed through the place, and in modern days, part of its course has been made the turnpike road from London just referred to. In the ancient division of the county, this parish was of greater extent than any other in the hundred of Ashendon, and it gave name to that portion of the latter, which, before the reign of King Edward II. was denominated Votesdon Hundred. It was then, and still is a rural Deanery. Petty Sessions for the Quainton Division of the Three Hundreds of Ashendon, are held here (at the Marlborough Arms Inn) and at Quainton once a month alternately. A branch of the Silk manufactory at Aylesbury and Tring, was established at Waddesdon in 1843. The building stands about the centre of the village, and about forty females are employed in it at hand-loom weaving. Many of the other female inhabitants find employment in pillow-lace making." [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.
"Dictionary of English Place-Names", A.D. Mills, Oxford University Press, 1997, ISBN 0 19 28131 3
"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: Ashendon Hundred, Volume 5", Peter Quick and Bertrand Shrimpton.



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 105 people named in the tax returns for contributions for Ireland. Between them they were assessed at £17.16.6 of which sum Mr Henry Wilkinson parson contributed £3.0.0

In 1798 the Posse Comitatus listed 217 men between the ages of 16 and 60 in Waddesdon.

In the earliest government census of 1801, there were the following statistics recorded:

  • Waddesdon - 1040 inhabitants in 205 families living in 132 houses
  • Westcott - 231 inhabitants in 49 families living in 35 houses
  • Woodham - 21 inhabitants in 5 families living in 4 houses
Census YearPopulation of
Population of
Population of
Population of

* = 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.

  • 1841 - Full transcription for Waddesdon is available free online - click here to see
  • 1851 - Full transcripts and indexes for Buckinghamshire are available on CD-ROM, hard copy and microfiche from the Buckinghamshire Family History Society.
  • 1861 - Available on CD-ROM with advanced search and mapping capabilities etc. from the Buckinghamshire Genealogical Society.
  • 1881
    • Available on CD-ROM from the Church of the Latter Day Saints, as part of the National 1881 Census Index.
    • Available on CD-ROM for Buckinghamshire, with advanced search and mapping capabilities etc. from Drake Software.
  • 1891 - Available on CD-ROM with advanced search and mapping capabilities etc. from the Buckinghamshire Genealogical Society.

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 St Michael & All Angels, Waddesdon have been deposited in the Buckinghamshire Record Office in Aylesbury, and they hold the following years:

EventDates covered
Christenings1541 - 1949
Marriages1538 - 1966
Burials1538 - 1974

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

Society Library*
Dates covered
Society Publications
Dates covered
Marriages - Waddesdon
1813 - 1837
Buckinghamshire Genealogical Society
Christenings - Westcott
1867 - 1901
Buckinghamshire Family History Society
Marriages - Westcott
1867 - 1901
Buckinghamshire Family History Society
Burials - Westcott
1867 - 1901
Buckinghamshire Family History 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 Waddesdon showed the following numbers:

St Michael & All Angels
200 - Morning General Congregation
93 - Morning Sunday Scholars
293 - Morning Total

295 - Afternoon General Congregation
98 - Afternoon Sunday Scholars
393 - Afternoon Total

Baptist Chapel
Waddeson Hill
95 - Morning General Congregation

100 - Afternoon General Congregation

Waddesdon (Westcott),
Particular Baptist Chapel
29 - Morning Sunday Scholars
29 - Morning Total

84 - Afternoon General Congregation
84 - Afternoon Total

Wesleyan Chapel
250 [about] - Afternoon Total

180 - Evening General Congregation


Description & Travel

You can see pictures of Waddesdon which are provided by:




Historical Geography

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



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

WADDESDON, in the hundred of Ashendon, gives name to the deanery in which it is situated. It lies about five miles and a half from Aylesbury, on the road to Bicester. The manor, which successively belonged to Robert Doyley and his sons-in-law, Milo Crispin and Brien Fitzcount, was seized by King Henry II. on the latter having assumed a religious order, and given to the Courtenays. In consequence of the attainder of one of that family, it was by two several grants in the possession of Archbishop Neville and Henry Bouchier, Earl of Essex. It was afterwards restored to the Courtenays, but being again forfeited, was granted by King Henry VIII. in 1540, to the Goodwins, from whom it passed by a female heir to the noble family of Wharton. It is now the property of his grace the Duke of Marlborough, whose father purchased it of the last Duke of Wharton or his representatives, together with the manors of Ham, Westcote, and Warmeston, in this parish, all of which had belonged to the Goodwins. The manor of Westcote was part of the estates of Thomas Duke of Gloucester, who was murdered in 1398.

Ethorp, in this parish, was the manor and seat of the ancient family of De Arcubus or Arches, as early as the year 1309. Richard de Arches, of Ethorp, was one of the knights of the shire in 1402; not long afterwards Ethorp became the seat of the Denhams: Sir John Denham died, seised of it in 1458. The same year Roger Denham, who it is probable was his son and heir, built and endowed a chantry chapel at this place. In the reign of Edward VI. Ethorp belonged to the Dormers, and was settled by Sir William Dormer, on his wife Dorothy, the daughter and coheir of Anthony Catesby esq; this lady, after the death of her first husband, married the brave Sir William Pelham, who distinguished himself during the wars in the Netherlands, and died at Flushing in 1587. Ethorp was his country seat, as appears by his last will, in which he leaves all his furniture there to his wife Dorothy, who survived him many years, and in 1610 built some additional rooms at the west end of the house, in one of which are to be seen her arms and initials, with the above date over the chimney piece. The armoury, which has a wooden sloping roof, ornamented with red and white roses, was built by Sir William Dormer; at the base of the rafters are angels bearing shields, with arms of the family of Dormer and their alliances; it is hung round with a variety of ancient armour and accoutrements. From the Dormers Ethorp passed by marriage to the Stanhopes, and was the country seat of Sir William Stanhope, who added the more modern part of the house, and erected several large buildings in the pleasure grounds and plantations, resembling the ruins of amphitheatres, castles, &c. In 1728, at the desire of his lady, he fitted up the chantry chapel at Ethorp, and divine service was performed in it for a few years; but in 1738, says Browne Willis, "he most wickedly, sacrilegiously. and impiously demolished the chapel, though warned against it by Dr. Carmichael," and made use of the stones to build a bridge, which he was then about to throw over the Thame, near the house. Before the abolition of chantries, the priest had his lodgings and maintenance at Sir Robert Dormer's house. Ethorp is now the property of the Earl of Chesterfield, but he seldom visits it, and the greater part of the furniture has been removed. Among the few pictures which remained there in 1801, was a good portrait of Charles the First, with his son and successor when a boy; Robert Dormer, Earl of Carnarvon, who fell at the battle of Newbury, and his countess; Lucy, Countess of Bedford, Sir William Stanhope, and Philip, Earl of Chesterfield. The gallery, 138 feet in length, appears to have been fitted up about the reign of Queen Elizabeth.

Blagrave, a manor farm in the parish of Waddesdon, has within the last century undergone several alienations: it is now the property of Charles Shaw Lefevre esq. M.P.

The manor, or manor farm, of Colwick, Collet or Collick, in this parish, belonged fopr several years to the Deacles, and is now by marriage the property of Mr. Griffith.

[Correction/Addition at the end of Magna Britannia states "The manor-farm of Collet was sold in the month of June, 1805, to Mr. Jones of West Smithfield."]

The manor, or manor farm of Cranwell, in this parish, is the property of Richard Bard Harcourt esq.

In the parish church of Waddesdon is the monument of Guy Carleton, a veteran soldier, who died June 1, 1608, aged 94. It is not improbable that he was an ancestor of his namesake Sir Guy Carleton Lord Dorchester, who has followed his steps in the field of valour, and attained more honourable distinction. On his monument is the following epitaph :


"Whilst I was young, in wars I shed my blood,
Both for my king and for my Country's good;
In elder years my care was chief to be
Soldier to him who shed his blood for me."

[Correction/Addition at the end of Magna Britannia states "It is somewhat remarkable that Guy Carleton, who was afterwards bishop of Chichester, being then vicar of Bucklebury, in Berkshire, (to which vicarage he was instituted in 1635), is said to have done good service in the calvary during the civil war on the King's side."]

The rectory of Waddesdon is divided into three portions; the portionists reside and officiate alternately; the Patronage of all three is vested in the Duke of Marlborough. Robert Parsons, one of the portionists of Waddesdon, preached the funeral sermon on the death of the celebrated Earl of Rochester, which is printed at the end of Bishop Burnet's memoirs of that nobleman.

Sir Francis Goodwin founded an alms-house at Waddesdon, for six poor persons, and endowed it with 30 l. per annum. Mr. Lewis Fetto founded a charity school at this place, in 1724.

Westcote and Woodham are hamlets or tithings belonging to this parish. Certain fields in the tithing of Westcote were inclosed by an act of parliament passed in 1765. The whole parish has been since inclosed by an act passed in 1774, when allotments of land were assigned in lieu of tithes, to the portionists, and a composition directed to be paid for the tithes of old inclosures.



You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SP744169 (Lat/Lon: 51.845752, -0.92138), Waddesdon which are provided by:


Names, Geographical

  • Waddesdon - this name derives from old english being a persons name + dun, and means 'Wott's hill'.
  • Eythrope - this name derives from the old english eg + thorp, and means 'island farm'.
  • Westcott - this name derives from the old english words west + cot, and means 'westerly cottage'.
  • Wormstone - this derives from old english, being a persons name + tun, and means either 'Wærmod's farm' or 'Wærmund's farm'.
  • Woodham - this name derives from the old english wudu + ham, and means 'farmstead or village in or by a wood'.