Description in 1871:
"BARKBY, a township and a parish in Barrow-upon-Soar district, Leicester. The township lies on an affluent of the river Wreak, 1½ mile S by E of Syston r. station, and 4½ NE of Leicester; and it includes the hamlet of Hambleton. Real property, £3,739. Pop., 504. Houses, 117. The parish contains also the township of North Thurmaston and the hamlet of Barkby-Thorpe; and its Post Town is Syston, under Leicester. Acres, 2,290. Real property, exclusive of Thurmaston, £4,739. Pop., 791. Houses, 183. Barkby Hall is the seat of W. Pochin, Esq. The living is a vicarage in the diocese of Peterborough. Value, £250. Patron, W. Pochin, Esq. The church is good; and there are two Methodist chapels and a national school."
John Marius Wilson's "Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales," 1870-72,



  • Suella POSTLES did an MA entitled "Barkby: Anatomy of a Township 1535-1800" for the Department of English Local History at the University of Leicester in 1976. Copies will be in the University of Leicester Library and one has been deposited with the Local Studies Library in Syston. The Barkby Local History Group also has a copy. She is happy to do lookups for Barkby surnames of this period. Contact her at: Suella Postles.
  • There is also a chapter on early Barkby in the volume in memory of Richard McKINLEY titled "Names, Time and Place" written by Suella Postles and Dr. David Postles, published by the Leopards Head Press in 2003.


  • A cemertery of two acres was formed around 1905 and jointly controlled by Barkby and Barkby Thorpe parish officials.


  • The parish was in the Syston sub-district of the Barrow-upon-Soar Registration District.
  • The 1851 Census for Leicestershire has been indexed by the Leicestershire & Rutland Family History Society. The whole index is available on microfiche. The society has also published it in print and Volume 23 covers the Syston Sub-District of which Barkby is a part.
  • The table below gives census piece numbers, where known:
Piece No.
1861 R.G. 9 / 2282
1871 R.G. 10 / 3267
1891 R.G. 12 / 2523

Church History

  • The Anglican parish church is dedicated to Saint Mary.
  • The church was built in the middle of the 14th century.
  • The churchyard was enlarged in 1887.

Church Records

  • The Anglican parish register dates from 1539.
  • The Society of Genealogists holds copies of Barkby parish records including records of baptisms from 1586-1642 1660-61 1674-1920, marriages from 1586-1641 (on microfiche from 1586-1677) 1678-88 1691-1963 and burials from 1586-1641 1652 1662 1691-1886 which can be studied at their library in London.
  • The church was in the rural deanery of Goscote (first portion).
  • The Wesleyan Methodists had a chapel here by 1849.
  • The Primitive Methodists had a chapel here by 1881.

Civil Registration

  • Civil Registration began in July, 1837.
  • The parish was in the Syston sub-district of the Barrow-upon-Soar Registration District.

Description & Travel

Barkby is a village and a parish which lie about 109 miles north of London and 5 miles northeast of Leicester. The parish includes the hamlet of Hambleton and the townships of Barkby Thorpe and North Thurmaston and covers about 2,087 acres. Beeby parish lies to the east and Syston parish lies to the north.

If you are planning a visit:

  • By automobile, take the A46 north out of Leicester and take the turnoff into Syston. Bare right, then turn right to take the road into Barkby.
You can see pictures of Barkby which are provided by:




Historical Geography

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



  • Parish workers were largely framework knitters or small-plot farmers.


  • Barkby Hall was the residence of William Ann POCHIN, lord of the manor, in 1849.
  • Barkby Hall is a plain stone building on grounds near the church.


  • See our Maps page for additional resources.

You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SK636099 (Lat/Lon: 52.683071, -1.060635), Barkby which are provided by:


Military History

There is a grey granite war memorial inside the church of St. Mary.


Politics & Government

  • The parish is in the ancient East Goscote Hundred in the northern (or eastern) division of the county.
  • This place was an ancient parish of Leicestershire and became a Civil Parish when those were established.
  • In 1881 the parish covered 2,299 acres. This was reduced to 1,917 acres in April, 1897, in order to enlarge Barkby Thorpe, which had become a Civil Parish.
  • In October, 1914, the parish gained 10 acres from Thurmaston Civil Parish.
  • In April, 1935, the parish gave up 363 acres to Syston Civil Parish, but gained 534 acres from another part of Syston Civil Parish. This left 2,087 acres under the parish authorities.

Poor Houses, Poor Law

  • Bastardy cases would be heard in the Leicester petty session hearings.
  • As a result of the 1834 Poor Law Amendment Act, this parish became part of the Barrow-upon-Soar Poorlaw Union.


 Year Inhabitants
1841 849
1861 791
1871 440
1881 579
1891 631
1901 682
1911 670
1921 730
1931 955
1951 405
1961 363


  • A Public Elementary School (National School) was built in 1863 for 45 children.