Melton Mowbray


Description in 1877:
"Melton Mowbray is in Framland Hundred, and gives name to a township, parish, poor law union, county court, petty sessional and local board district, and the celebrated Melton Hunt. It is a polling place for the northern division of the county, and has attained considerable celebrity for its manufacture of pork pies, and is a pleasant and well built market town, pleasantly seated on the banks of the small river Eye, in a fertile open vale, 15 miles N. E. of Leicester, 10 miles N.W. of Oakham, 16 miles S.W. of Grantham, and 105 miles N. N. W. of London. Melton Mowbray parish, which comprises the townships of Burton Lazars, Freeby, Melton Mowbray, Sysonby, and Welby, in 1871 contained 5,559 persons, living in 1,123 houses, on 10,266 acres of land; of these, 5,033 persons, 1,020 houses, and about 3,300 acres, were in Melton Mowbray township. The soil is generally a black sandy loam, inclining to clay, and having a plentiful substratum of gravel. It had only 1,766 inhabitants in 1801, but in 1831 they had increased to 3,327, in 1841 to 3,740, in 1851 to 4,434, and in 1861 to 4,436. The return for 1871, given above included a number of persons visiting the steeple-chases, and also 126 paupers in the union workhouse."
[WHITE's "History, Gazetteer and Directory of the Counties of Leicester and Rutland," 3rd Edition. 1877]


Archives & Libraries

The Melton Mowbray Library on Wilton Road is a branch of the Leicester County Council Library System. It is open 5 days each week (verify by phone if you are visiting) and has staff trained in Family History research.



  • HUNT, P. E. (1957),"The Story of Melton Mowbray." Palmers Printing and Publishing Co. Ltd., Grantham LIN. ASIN: B0026VDUTE.


  • There is an old public cemetery in the town. The Kings Street cemetery was opened in 1846 as an extension to the Anglican churchyard. It closed in 1899.
  • A new cemetery of 8 acres was formed on Thorpe Road on the eastern edge of town and opened in June, 1893. It had a single mortuary chapel. The ground was still unconsecrated in 1925.
  • Kate JEWELL has a photograph of the Thorpe Road Cemetery on Geo-graph, taken in October, 2005.


  • The parish was in the Melton Mowbray subdistrict of the Melton Mowbray 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 24 covers the Melton sub-district.
  • The table below gives census piece numbers, where known:
Piece No.
1841 H.O. 107 / 588
1851 H.O. 107 / 2091
1861 R.G. 9 / 2299, 2300 & 2304
1871 R.G. 10 / 3294 & 3295
1891 R.G. 12 / 2544

Church History

  • In ancient times there was a priory here, closed by the Dissolution.
  • The Anglican parish church is dedicated to Saint Mary the Virgin.
  • Colin PARK has a photograph of the front of St Mary's Church on Geo-graph, taken in May, 2018.
  • The Parish Church of St. Mary (the Virgin) dates back to 1170.
  • During the reign of Elizabeth I, the church walls were raised higher and windows put up over the aisles.
  • The church has a central tower and a "dwarf" spire containing a clock.
  • The church was extensively restored in 1850.
  • The church seats 1,200.
  • John SALMON has a photograph of St Mary's Church on Geo-graph, taken in June, 2002.

Church Records

  • The Anglican parish register dates from 1547.
  • The church was in the rural deanery of Goscote (first portion). By 1925 this was the rural deanery of Framland (third portion).
  • The Congregational Church in Chapel Street was built in 1822.
  • The Roman Catholic Church, dedicated to Saint John the Baptist, was built in Thorpe End in 1840.
  • Andrew TATLOW has a photograph of St John the Baptist RC Church on Geo-graph, taken in August, 2006.
  • David HALLAM-JONES also has a photograph of St John the Baptist RC Church on Geo-graph, taken in December, 2017.
  • The Wesleyan Methodist Chapel in Sage Cross Street was rebuilt in 1870.
  • The Baptist Chapel in Nottingham Street was built in 1872.
  • Alan MURRAY-RUST has a photograph of the Former Baptist Chapel on Geo-graph, taken in February, 2017.
  • The Primitive Methodist Chapel in Sherrard Street was built in 1888.

Registers held at The Record Office for Leicestershire, Leicester & Rutland include:-

  • Baptisms 1546-1918
  • Marriages 1546 - 1932
  • Burials 1546 - 1914
  • Transcripts of Marriages 1546 -1812 (L929.3)

The Society of Genealogists holds copies of records from St. Mary's Parish Church and St. John's Roman Catholic Church which can be studied at their library in London.


Civil Registration

  • The parish was in the Melton Mowbray subdistrict of the Melton Mowbray Registration District.
  • Civil Registration started in July, 1837.
  • The Registrar's Office in Melton Mowbray closed in 1995. See Local Register Offices in England and Wales

Description & Travel

Melton Mowbray is a parish and a town 105 miles north of the city of London, 16 miles north-east of Leicester, 16 miles south-west of Grantham in Lincolnshire, and 10 miles north-west of Oakham. The parish included the Chapelries of Freeby and Welby and covered 5,610 acres in 1849. The River Eye joins the River Wreak near Melton. The Scalford Brook enters the town from the north before it joins the River Wreak.

The Leicestershire Tourist Information website has tourist information and history.

Melton Today website has a variety of information.

If you are planning a visit:

  • By automobile, the parish is at the intersection of the A606 and the A607 and the A6006 arterial road.
  • Jonathan THACKER has a photograph of the Market Place on Geo-graph, taken in July, 2019.
You can see pictures of Melton Mowbray which are provided by:




Historical Geography

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



  • During the civil wars, the parliamentary forces suffered a great slaughter here.
  • The town was long known for the "Melton Hunt" held here.
  • The town was lighted by gas in 1844.
  • The town had a good reputation for its Stilton Cheese and its Pork Pies. In the early 1900s, the town made up to twenty tons of Pork Pies per week, most shipped to London and other cities.
  • Stephen McKAY has a photograph of Ye Olde Pork Pie Shoppe on Geo-graph, taken in April, 2009.


You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SK757192 (Lat/Lon: 52.765105, -0.879541), Melton Mowbray which are provided by:


Medical Records

  • The Isolation Hospital was on Scalford Road. It had a scarlet fever ward, a diptheria ward and a typhoid ward. It could hold a total of 30 patients. It's initial name appears to be "Melton Mowbray and Belvoir Isolation Hospital."
  • Miss Clara SHIELDS was the matron in 1925.
  • Hospitals were not required to archive patient records.
  • In 1920, as a gift to the town, Col. Richard DALGLEISH purchased Wyndham House and 15 acres of land. It would become the Melton and District Hospital. In 1921, local authorities decided to dedicate this as Melton and District War Memorial Hospital in honour of the men who had fallen in the Great War.
  • The Melton Mowbray War Memorial Hospital was on Dalby Road.
  • Miss Emily GIBSON was the matron in 1925.
  • In 1948 this hospital was subsumed into the National Health Service.
  • The main building is now a Grade II listed structure with British Heritage.
  • Kate JEWELL has a photograph of the War Memorial Hospital on Geo-graph, taken in March, 2006.
  • At last report, the Melton Mowbray War Memorial Hospital was closed and may be sold to developers, although there is strong local interest in keeping the facility for the community.
  • David HALLAM-JONES has a photograph of St Mary's Hospital on Geo-graph, taken in December, 2017. This was once part of the old Union Workhouse.

Military History

  • Julian GUFFOGG has a photograph of the tomb of a Crusader from circa 1303, taken in October, 2018.
  • One of the stained glass windows in the church is in memory of Captain Gordon WOOD, who was killed in the South African War in 1902.
  • The church also contains a memorial window to the men of the parish who fell in World War I.
  • Basher EYRE has a photograph of the Boer War memorial on Geo-graph, taken in September, 2014.
  • Julian P. GUFFOGG has a photograph of the War Memorial Windows, taken in October, 2018.
  • Richard CROFT has a photograph of the War Memorial in St. Mary's Church on Geo-graph, taken in April, 2009.
  • There are 32 Commonwealth War Graves in the Thorpe Road Cemetery.
  • Melton Mowbray is home to the Defence Animal Training Regiment of the Royal Army. They have been in the parish, on the north-west side of the town, since 1946.

Politics & Government

  • This place was an ancient parish in Leicester county and it became a modern Civil Parish when those were established.
  • The parish was in the ancient Framland Hundred in the northern division of the county.
  • In 1894 the Civil Parish adopted an Urban District Council form of governance.
  • You may contact the Melton Borough Council regarding civic or political issues, but they can NOT assist you with family history searches.

Poor Houses, Poor Law

  • Bastardy cases would be heard in the Melton Mowbray petty session hearings held every Tuesday in the local court house.
  • As a result of the 1834 Poor Law Amendment Act, the parish became the heart of the Melton Mowbray Poorlaw Union.
  • Storer's Almshouses, built in 1827, stood on Rutland Street.


 Year Inhabitants
1801 2,240
1841 4,267
1871 5,033
1881 5,820
1901 6,449
1911 9,202
1921 9,187
1931 10,437


  • The first school was established here in 1347.
  • David HALLAM-JONES has a photograph of the old ,a href="https://www.geograph.org.uk/photo/5619479">King's Road Primary School for girls on Geo-graph, taken in December, 2017.
  • Alan MURRAY-RUST has a photograph of the Boys School built in 1839 on Geo-graph, taken in February, 2017.