Orton Waterville



[Transcribed and edited information from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland - 1868]

"ORTON WATERVILLE, (or Orton, Cherry), a parish in the hundred of Norman Cross, county Huntingdon, 3 miles south-west of Peterborough, its post town, and within half a mile of the Overton station on the London and North Western railway. The village, which is of small extent, is situated near the Peterborough and Oundle road and the river Nen. The inhabitants are chiefly engaged in agriculture. A short time back many were employed in the stone-quarries and gravel pits, but these are now nearly exhausted. The soil is of various qualities, with a subsoil of clay and gravel. The tithes were commuted for land and a money payment under an Enclosure Act in 1805. The living is a rectory in the diocese of Ely, value £354, in the patronage of Pembroke College, Cambridge. The church, dedicated to St. Mary, is an ancient stone structure of large dimensions, with a square embattled tower containing four bells. The parochial charities produce about £30 per annum. There is a National school for both sexes. This manor in 1480 passed from Archbishop Booth to Pembroke College, of which the master and fellows are lords of the manor.

[Transcribed from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland 1868]
by Colin Hinson ©2013


  • Monumental inscriptions for this parish have not been recorded by the Cambridgeshire and Huntingdonshire FHS. However, Peterborough & District FHS have an interest in the parish.


  • Census information for this parish (1841 - 1891) is held in the Huntingdon Records Office.
  • The full 1841 Census of Orton Waterville Parish is available as fiche set C106 from the Cambridgeshire and Huntingdonshire FHS.
  • The full 1851 Census of Orton Waterville Parish is available as fiche set C56 from the Cambridgeshire and Huntingdonshire FHS.
  • An index of surnames in the 1851 Census of the Peterborough Registration District (HO107/1747) in which Orton Waterville was enumerated (Folios 171B-179), and which took place on 30th March 1851, has also been produced by the Peterborough & District FHS.
  • The Index is available in either microfiche or A5 booklet form from Mr G Harbron, 7 Newby Close, Peterborough PE3 6PU, England. Please state which version you want.
  • A full transcription of the 1891 Census of the Stilton sub-District of the Peterborough Registration District (RG12/1225) in which Orton Waterville was enumerated, and which took place on 5th April 1891, has also been produced by the Huntingdonshire FHS (as Fiche C-15). This is available from the Cambridgeshire and Huntingdonshire FHS.



Church History

  • The church of St. Mary consists of a chancel, nave, north aisle, south aisle, west tower and south porch. The walls are of rubble with stone dressings, and the roofs are covered with lead and slates.
  • The church is not mentioned in the Domesday survey of 1086, but it would appear that a stone church with a north aisle existed here in the 12th century. This church, with the possible exception of the chancel (about which there is no evidence), appears to have been rebuilt towards the end of the 13th century, commencing with the north arcade c.1300, which was rebuilt upon earlier 12th century bases. The west tower and south arcade were built some 10 years later. The chancel arch was rebuilt around 1300 - 1310, and this probably gives the date when the chancel assumed its present size. Probably the lower parts of the walls of this date remain. The two aisles and side walls of the porch were rebuilt c.1330. The clearstory was added in the 15th century, and the belfry seems to have been added (or rebuilt) on the west tower c.1500.
  • The chancel was evidently rebuilt in the 17th century, probably upon the old foundations and using much of the old materials. The nave roof was rebuilt in 1753. Some repairs were done to the church and tower in 1840-1843. The chancel roof was much restored in 1919, the roof of the south aisle in 1920, and that of the north aisle in 1924.
  • There are photographs and further information on St. Mary's Church on Rob's Churches website.

Church Records

  • The following are available in the Huntingdon Records Office.
    • Baptisms: 1538-1748, 1747-1812, 1813-1887.
    • Banns: 1754-1823, 1823-1944.
    • Marriages: 1540-1747, 1747-1752, 1754-1837 (indexed transcriptions), 1754-1812.
    • Burials: 1539-1748, 1747-1812.
    • Bishop's Transcripts: 1604-5, 1610, 1612, 1617-19, 1625, 1627, 1660-9/1680, 1682, 1684-8, 1690-1702, 1704-5, 1707-26, 1735, 1739-43, 1745-8, 1750-80, 1782-3, 1785-96, 1798-1813/1813-23/1825-35, 1837-59.
  • The Huntingdonshire Marriage Indexes include marriages from this parish. These are, at present, issued in alphabetical listings in series: 1601-1700, and 1701-1754, and are available from the Cambridgeshire and Huntingdonshire FHS.

Civil Registration

  • Orton Waterville was originally in the Peterborough Registration District of Northamptonshire from 1st July 1837. Subsequently it was transferred to the Stilton sub-District of Huntingdonshire. It was later transferred back to the Peterborough District where it remains.




You can see maps centred on OS grid reference TL155960 (Lat/Lon: 52.549603, -0.298044), Orton Waterville which are provided by:


Military History

  • The war memorial with detailed information about those who fell is available on the Roll of Honour site for Huntingdonshire.

Names, Geographical

  • Cherry Orton (xv cent.).

Poor Houses, Poor Law

  • The parish of Orton Waterville was in the Peterborough Union of Northamptonshire for Poor Law administration.


  • Population in 1801 - 270.
  • Population in 1851 - 302.
  • Population in 1901 - 276.
  • Population in 1951 - 334.
  • Population in 1971 - 819.
  • Population in 1991 - 9745.
  • Boundary changes moved some 450 people from Orton Longueville into Orton Waterville between 1981 and 1991.