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ELTON: Geographical and Historical information from the year 1932.

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[Description(s) transcribed by Martin Edwards and later edited by Colin Hinson ©2010]
[from The Victoria County History series - 1932]

"ELTON, in the district of Huntingdon, there is a certain township, to which far distant antiquity gave the name Athelintone; it lies in a most beautiful situation, well provided with streams of water, in a pleasant plain of meadows, abounding in grazing for cattle and rich in fertile field". Thus, in the 12th century, the chronicler of Ramsey Abbey described Elton, and the description remains to the present day.

The parish of Elton lies in the north-west corner of the old county of Huntingdonshire on the borders of Northamptonshire, into which the southern portion of Elton Park extends. The ancient parish was partly in the Polebrook Hundred of Northamptonshire and partly in the Norman Cross Hundred of Huntingdonshire. The River Nene forms the greater part of the western boundary and the Billing Brook the eastern boundary. The land is undulating and, in the places near the Nene, it is less than 50 ft. above sea-level. Near Stock Hill Lodge, however, it rises to 200 ft. The sub-soil is mainly clay and the land is used for agriculture.

The village lies close to the River Nene at the western boundary of the parish and is chiefly built along the High Street and a parallel road, both running east from the river to the junction of the roads from Peterborough and Stamford to Oundle. There was only a ford over the river until 1844 when a wooden bridge (called the Crown Bridge) was built. This was replaced by a stone bridge in 1875. The common fields of Elton were inclosed by an Act of Parliament in 1779, when the first Earl of Carysford (d. 1789)

was lord of the manor.

The village is divided into Nether End and River End, and Over End. These divisions can be traced back to 1331 when the Cross in 'Overtoun' is mentioned, and in 1386 the Manor House stood in Netherton, presumably on the same site as the present day. In 1675 separate searchers of balks and tellers of cattle were appointed for the two divisions, which in 1791 each contained 109 houses. In the early part of the 20th century, there were a village Green and the Mill at Nether End; the church stands in Over End. Further to the south are Elton Hall and Elton Park. At the Sheep Walk, a name still preserved by Sheep Walk Farm near Billing Brook, there is a rectangular moat mentioned in 1588 when it was leased with the site of the Manor.

Various Neolithic implements have been found in fair numbers scattered over the parish. Romano-British pottery, some being 3rd century Castor Ware, has been found in the village, whilst the remains of two Anglo-Saxon crosses of the christian period, dated to around the year 970, are standing in the churchyard.

Elton Hall was built by Sir Richard Sapcote (d. 1477) , and was subsequently extended by his successors. This house was originally surrounded by a moat, now long since filled up, but in 1894 indications were found that it was 13 ft. deep. Robert Sapcote, who died on 4th January 1600/1 was probably the last of his family to live here, for in 1617 the property was finally sold coming into the possession of Sir Thomas Proby. In 1665, because of its ruinous condition, it was pulled down and a new house built in its place. Subsequent alterations were undertaken by other owners of the property including the Earls of Carysford.

In 1851 the civil parish was considered to be entirely in Huntingdonshire. However, in 1965, the parish boundaries were altered with those of its neighbours. Parts were exchanged with Fotheringay civil parish of Northamptonshire; Elton also gained part of Warmington civil parish, and lost part to Nassington civil parish, both these latter two parishes being in Northamptonshire."

[Description(s) transcribed by Martin Edwards ©2003 and later edited by Colin Hinson ©2010]
[mainly from The Victoria County History series- 1932]