(including the hamlet of Woburn Sands)


"The parish of Wavendon includes the hamlet of Woburn Sands, and lies on the verge of the county adjoining Bedfordshire. Its area is 2665 acres, and the population in 1851 was 935 souls. There are about 500 acres of woodland. The soil generally is a strong clay or loam; towards the hills it is sandy. The Bedford Branch of the London and North Western Railway passes through a portion of the parish. The Village is on the road between Woburn and Newport Pagnell 3 3/4 miles N.W., and 5 miles S.S.E. from the former town. Many of the women and children are employed in making bone lace, and some in platting straw......
WOBURN SANDS HAMLET.- Woburn Sands, formerly called Hogsty End, lies about 2 miles N.W. from Woburn, and about a quarter of a mile from the Woburn Railway Station, on the before-named Bedford branch of the London and North Western Railway. The place is pleasantly situated, and contains some genteel residences, and many very neat cottages. Here is Hardwick Cottage, the seat of the Lord of the Manor of Wavendon, already mentioned..." [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: Milton Keynes & Wolverton area, Volume 6", Peter Quick.



  • War memorials in Wavendon and Woburn Sands have been transcribed by Peter Quick, and published in a booklet entitled "War Memorials and War Graves: Milton Keynes & Wolverton area, Volume 6", available from the Buckinghamshire Genealogical Society.
  • War memorial details are also available online on the Roll of Honour web site.


In 1642 there were 137 people named in the tax returns for contributions for Ireland. Between them they were assessed at £14.14.8 of which sum Mr William Norton contributed £2.0.0

In 1798 the Posse Comitatus listed 142 men between the ages of 16 and 60 in Wavendon.

In the earliest government census of 1801, there were 635 inhabitants in 138 families living in 133 houses recorded in Wavendon.

Census YearPopulation of Wavendon

* = 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.

  • 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 Mary the Virgin, Wavendon have been deposited in the Buckinghamshire Record Office in Aylesbury, and they hold the following years:

EventDates covered
Christenings1567 - 1920
Marriages1569 - 1959
Burials1582 - 1964

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 Wavendon showed the following numbers:

St Mary the Virgin 
200 - Morning General Congregation
120 - Morning Sunday Scholars
320 - Morning Total

250 - Afternoon General Congregation
100 - Afternoon Sunday Scholars
350 - Afternoon Total

Primitive Methodist Chapel
50 - Afternoon General Congregation
50 - Afternoon Total

90 - Evening General Congregation
90 - Evening Total

Wesleyan Methodist Chapel
35 - Morning Sunday Scholars

20 (about) - Afternoon General Congregation

40 - Evening General Congregation


Description & Travel

You can see pictures of Wavendon which are provided by:




Historical Geography

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



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

WAVENDON, in the hundred and deanery of Newport, lies on the borders of Bedforshire, in the great road to London, five miles from Newport-Pagnell, and four from Woburn. The principal manor was in the Passelews, from 1180 till 1313, and afterwards successively in the families of Peyvre, Green, Stafford, Fitzhugh, Cranwell, Beale, Cullen, and Isaacson. It is now the property of Mrs. Denison, widow of the late principal of Magdalen-Hall, in Oxford, who is descended from the Isaacsons.

Another manor passed from the Bolbecs, by female heirs, to the Veres and Courtenays. This manor, or reputed manor, which had been before demised to John Sheppard, was granted in fee to him and his heirs, in 1557, as having been then lately the property of the attainted Marquis of Exeter. Some pits of fullers earth are mentioned in the grant as being on this estate. It has since been in the family of Wells, and is now the property of Mr. Dixie.

A third manor, or reputed manor, which had been given by the Bolebecs or Veres, to Woburn Abbey, was granted in 1559, to Campion and Thompson. It has since been divided into severalties. The act of parliament which passed in 1788, for inclosing this parish, describes the several owners of these estates, as claiming the manor of Wavendon and a right to the heath. The claims were to be examined into, and the act allots land to the lord of the manor "if any." The commissioners, after examining into the several claims, determined that Mrs. Denison's was the only estate entitled to an allotment on account of manorial rights.

Mr. Serjeant Selby had an estate in this parish, on which he built a house for his own residence. Since the death of his son, the late Mr. Selby, it has passed through several hands, and is now the property and residence of Henry Hugh Hoare esq.

Mr. Selby was patron of the rectory, which is in the deanery of Newport-Pagnell. The advowson is now vested in Mr. Leonard Hampson of Luton. The act of parliament abovementioned did not exonerate this parish from tithes.

In the church are some memorials of the family of Saunders, of Battlesden, among which is that of Richard Saunders esq. who died in 1639, having had 27 children by four wives. Mr. George Wells, who died in 1714, and his niece, Mrs. Miller, gave the sum of 1000 l. with which a charity school was built, and endowed with lands, producing a rent of 40 l. per annum for instructing, clothing, and apprenticing 10 boys.



You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SP911371 (Lat/Lon: 52.024846, -0.673676), Wavendon which are provided by:


Names, Geographical

The name of Wavendon derives from old english, being a persons name + dun, and means 'Wafa's hill'.