MEASHAM, a parish in the hundred of Repton, county Derby, 3½ miles S. W. of Ashby-de-la-Zouch, its nearest money-order office, and 9½ N. of Atherstone. It is situated on the Ashby-de-la-Zouch canal and small river Mease, from which it derives its name. This latter rises at Ashby, and runs 16 miles S. and W. to the river Trent, below Croxall, bounding the parish of Measham. The parish includes, on the S. and E., the hamlets of Donisthorpe and Oakthorpe. The chief trade of the town is in the manufacture of silk, tape, and small ware.

There is also a steam boiler and chain manufactory, giving employment to a large number of hands. A brisk trade is carried on in malting and brewing. Coal is found, but not worked, and there are quarries of good building-stone. The living is a perpetual curacy in the diocese of Lichfield, value £97.

The church, dedicated to St. Lawrence, has a tower containing a clock and four bells. The parochial charities produce about £325 per annum, of which £268 goes to Monk's school. There are National, British, and infant schools. The Wesleyans and Baptists have each a chapel, and the latter have a Sunday-school in connection. Measham Hall is a brick-built mansion, situated in the midst of an extensive park.”

from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland - 1868


Archives & Libraries

The Measham Library is on Thorpe Road off High Street. It is a branch of the Leicester County Council Library System. It is open 4 days each week (verify by phone if you are visiting). The Library has sections for Local Studies and Family History research.

Phillip JEFFREY has a photograph of the Measham Library on Geo-graph, taken in January, 2014.



  • The cemetery of 2 acres opened in 1880.
  • The cemetery is administered by the Parish Council.


  • The parish was in the Measham subdistrict of the Ashby-de-la-Zouch Registration District.
  • The table below gives census piece numbers, where known:
Piece No.
1851 H.O. 107 / 2084
1861 R.G. 9 / 2267 & 2268
1871 R.G.10/3243
1891 R.G. 12 / 2508

Church History

  • The Anglican parish church for Measham is dedicated to Saint Lawrence.
  • The church building apparently dates from at least 1220.
  • This chancel was renovated in 1843.
  • The church seats just over 600.
  • Michael FAHERTY has a photograph of St. Lawrence's tower on Geo-graph, taken in October, 2012.

Church Records

  • The Anglican parish register dates from 1683 for baptisms and 1677 for burials.
  • The church was in the rural deanery of Akeley (western division).
  • The Wesleyan Methodists had a chapel here before 1871 and built a new one here in 1906.
  • Alan MURRAY-RUST has a photograph of the Methodist chapel on Geo-graph, taken in March, 2010.
  • The Primitive Methodists had a chapel built in 1859.
  • The Baptists had a chapel founded in 1811 and rebuilt in 1841.
  • The Roman Catholic Church of St. Charles Borremeo was built in 1881.

Civil Registration

  • Civil Registration started in July, 1837.
  • The parish was in the Measham subdistrict of the Ashby-de-la-Zouch Registration District.

Description & Travel

"MEASHAM is a village and parish, in the hundred of Repton and Gresley, county of Derby, though locally situate in the western division of the hundred of Goscote, county of Leicester, about three miles and a half S.S.W. from Ashby-de-la-Zouch, the canal of which name passes through the village; and the parish is bounded on the west, north, and south, by the river Mease. There are potteries in the neighbourhood, which give employment to some of the inhabitants, but the majority are employed in agriculture, and many farmers and graziers of great respectability are resident in the parish."[Description from Pigot and Co's Commercial Directory for Derbyshire, 1835]
"MEASHAM, a village, a township, a parish, and a sub-district, in the district of Ashby-de-le-Zouch, and county of Derby. The village stands on the Ashby-de-la-Zouch canal, near the river Mease and the boundary with Leicestershire, 3½ miles SW by S of Ashby-de-la-Zouch r. station; and has a post office under Atherstone. -The township comprises 1,490 acres. Real property, £6,301. Pop., 1,569. Houses, 337. The parish contains also parts of the hamlets of Donisthorpe and Oakthorpe. Real property, with the rest of Donisthorpe and Oakthorpe, £8,624. Pop., 1,639. Houses, 348. The property is divided among a few. Measham Hall is the seat of W. Abney, Esq.
The manufacture of silk fabrics and small ware is largely carried on; and there are a steam-boiler and chain manufactory, and a small brewery. The living is a vicarage in the diocese of Lichfield. Value, £97. Patron, the Marquis of Hastings.
The church is good; and there are chapels for Baptists and Wesleyans, a large national school, and charities £325. -The sub-district contains only the Measham township portion of the parish, but contains also three entire parishes and part of another electorally in Leicestershire, and another parish partly in Derby and partly in Leicester. Acres, 9,457. Pop. 4,109. Houses, 917."
[John Marius WILSON's "Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales", 1870-72]

Christine JOHNSTONE has a photograph of the Village Sign on Geo-graph, taken in March, 2011.

You can see pictures of Measham which are provided by:






Historical Geography

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



Alan MURRAY-RUST has a photograph of The White Swan Pub. on Geo-graph, taken in March, 2010.



Measham Hall stands about 1.5 miles east of the town of Measham. It was the seat of William W. ABNEY in 1857.



You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SK334121 (Lat/Lon: 52.705544, -1.507119), Measham which are provided by:



Jane TAYLOR in Redcar contributes this snippet from the Derby Mercury of 3 November 1803, MARRIED: "On Tuesday se'nnight, at Measham, in this county, Mr. STEVENSON of Snareston, to Miss JEWSBURY, of the former place."



Jane TAYLOR in Redcar has this announcement from the Derby Mercury of 6 September, 1804: "MISC: A few days since John SMITH, a labouring man, being employed to load some timber upon a drug at Measham, in this county, was unfortunately so much injured thereby as to occasion his death."


Politics & Government

  • This place was an ancient parish in Derbyshire and it became a modern Civil Parish when those were established.
  • This parish was in the ancient Repton and Greasley Hundred (or Wapentake).
  • In May, 1897, civil administration of this parish was passed to Leicestershire.
  • In March, 1884, this parish was reduced in size to enlarge Ravenstone parish with the hamlet of Snibstone.
  • In April, 1936, this parish was reduced by 487 acres to enlarge Ashby de la Zouch.
  • You may contact the Measham Parish Council regarding civic or political matters, but they are NOT funded to help you with family history research.
  • District governance is provided by the North West Leicestershire District Council.

Poor Houses, Poor Law

  • Bastardy cases would be heard in the Swadlincote petty session hearings.
  • As a result of the 1834 Poorlaw Amendment Act, this parish became a member of the Ashby-de-la-Zouch Poorlaw Union.


 Year Inhabitants
1851 1,294
1861 1,190
1871 1,226
1881 1,153
1891 489
1901 473
1911 443
1921 441
1931 508
1951 405
1961 433


  • A Public Elementary School (mixed) was built here in 1829 and was enlarged in 1837 and 1896 to hold 270 students.
  • A Council School (held at the Baptist Assembly Hall) was opened for 120 infants in 1844.  This is often called a British School.
  • A Catholic School (mixed and infants) was opened for 130 students prior to 1900.