John Marius WILSON's "Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales, 1870-72" tells us:

HOLT, or NEVILL-HOLT, a township-chapelry in Medbourne parish, Leicester; near the river Welland, and the boundaries with Northampton and Rutland, 2 miles NNE of Medbourne Bridge r. station, and 7½ NNE of Market-Harborough. Post town, Medbourne, under Market-Harborough. Acres, 1,300. Real property, £2,397. Pop., 33. Houses, 9. The manor belongs to Cosmo Nevill, Esq. Holt Hall, a large castellated mansion, on a bold eminence with fine views, is the seat of B. Thornton, Esq. Extensive blast furnaces were erected in 1864, for working recently discovered iron ore. There is a mineral spring, which, till a recent period, was in high repute for glandular complaints. The living is a p. curacy, annexed to the rectory of Medbourne, in the diocese of Peterborough. The church stands close to Holt Hall; consists of nave, transept, and chancel, with embattled tower and lofty spire; and contains some good monuments.




  • The parish was in the Great Easton subdistrict of the Uppingham 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.
  • The table below gives census piece numbers, where known:
Piece No.
1891 R.G. 12 / 2550

Church History

  • The Anglican parish church is dedicated to Saint Mary.
  • The church is of Norman origin, built in the late 13th century to replace an earlier church.
  • The church seats 100.

Church Records

  • The Anglican parish register is included in Medbourne.
  • The church was in the rural deanery of Gartree (third portion).
  • There was a Catholic chapel attached to the side of Holt Hall.

Civil Registration

  • Civil Registration began in July, 1837.
  • The parish was in the Great Easton subdistrict of the Uppingham Registration District.

Description & Travel

Holt is a township, a chapelry and a village in the old parish of Medbourne, 89 miles north of London, 17 miles south-east of Leicester city and 7 miles north-east of Market Harborough. The parish covers 1,178 acres.

If you are planning a visit:

  • Take the B664 arterial road northeast out of Market Harborough to Medbourne. Holt is east of Medbourne.
You can see pictures of Holt which are provided by:




Historical Geography

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



  • Iron and limestone were quarried in this parish.
  • The parish employed a large number of boot and shoe makers.


  • Holt Hall has some portions dated to the 15th century.
  • Tim HEATON has a photograph of Neville Holt Hall taken in September, 2006.


  • See our Maps page for additional resources.

You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SP815937 (Lat/Lon: 52.535076, -0.799893), Holt which are provided by:


Names, Geographical

  • Known as just "Holt" to the locals, its proper name is "Neville Holt".

Politics & Government

  • The parish was in the southern division of the county in the ancient Gartree Hundred (or Wapentake).
  • This place had been a chapelry and a township in Medbourne parish for centuries. Some time after 1846 the township became a Civil Parish of its own right. It is not clear if it still retains that status.

Poor Houses, Poor Law

  • After the Poor Law Amendment Act reforms of 1834, the parish became part of the Uppingham Poorlaw Union.
  • Bastardy cases would be heard in the East Norton petty session hearings.


 Year Inhabitants
1841 40
1871 28
1881 88
1891 41
1901 53
1911 76
1921 128
1931 66
1951 42
1961 33


  • The children of this place attended school in Medbourne.
  • In 1919, at the sale of the Nevill Holt estate, the hall was purchased by the Revd. C. A. C. Bowlker for use as a preparatory school. In 1960 there were about 90 boys.