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Owston

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Description in 1849:
"OWSTON, or Ouston, is a village and parish 6 miles west of Oakham, and 8 south of Melton Mowbray, in the Hundred of Framland, Union of Billesdon. The living is a rectory, value £200, held by the Rev. Charles Haycock, and in the gift of the Rev. Henry Palmer.

The church is a very old building of stone, of the 11th century, with a tower, steeple, and 2 bells; acreage 3,000, and population 213. The lord of the manor is Sir Frederick Fowke, Bart. Here was a small abbey, of which there are no remains."
"Post Office Directory, Leicestershire & Rutlandshire" 1849

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Census

  • The parish was in the Billesdon subdistrict of the Billesdon 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:
     
Census
Year
Piece No.
1861 R.G. 9 / 2253
1871 R.G. 10 / 3228
1891 R.G. 12 / 2494
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Church History

  • There was a priory of Austin canons here, founded before 1166 by Robert GRIMBALD and dedicated to St. Mary, St. Andrew and All Saints. There are now no remains of the priory.
     
  • There is speculation that the pond and earthworks just south-west of the village are the remnants of the fishponds of Owston Abbey.
     
  • There is an in-depth History of the Abbey, Priory and the church.
     
  • The Anglican parish church is dedicated to Saint Andrew.
     
  • The church was built in the 11th century and stands on the south-west side of the main street.
     
  • The church is a small building made of ironstone with limestone facings and an embattled tower. The tower appears to be a 15th century addition. The tower buttresses are a much later addition.
     
  • The church was partially rebuilt and extensively repaired in 1791-1793.
     
  • The church seats about 150.
     
  • Mat FASCIONE has a photograph of St Andrew's Church on Geo-graph, taken in April, 2013.
     
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Church Records

  • The Anglican parish register dates from 1701.
     
  • The church is in the rural Goscote deanery (first portion).
     
  • Churchwardens' accounts survive for 1796, 1803, 1804-09, and 1812-1902, and overseers' accounts for 1800-31.
     
  • Methodists met in the house of Anne COLLETT in 1817, but no chapel was ever built for them here.
     
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Civil Registration

  • Civil Registration began in July, 1837.
     
  • The parish was in the Billesdon subdistrict of the Billesdon Registration District.
     
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Description & Travel

Owston is a hamlet, a township and a parish in the uplands of east Leicestershire. It is about 102 miles north of London, 6 miles west of Oakham in Rutland, 8 miles south of Melton Mowbray and 2 miles west from Knossington village. The river Gwash rises in the eastern poart of the parish. To the west rises a tributary to the River Wreak. The parish, at its largest, covered 3,095 acres.

Most of the village lies along one street. Newbold Saucey is an abandoned hamlet or district north-west of the village. The hamlet of North Marefield has been almost completely abandoned. If you are planning a visit:

  • There are numerous footpaths, bridle-roads and tracks in the parish.
     
  • By automobile, take the A6 trunk road south-east out of Leicester city. After Wigston you will see Owston village on your right.
     
You can see pictures of Owston which are provided by:

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Gazetteers

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Historical Geography

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

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History

  • There was a recorded population of 22 in Owston and Newbold in 1086.
     
  • The former chapelry of Newbold was apparently once a substantial hamlet.
     
  • The land around the village has been mostly pasture for centuries.
     
  • The village hall opened in 1950,
     
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Manors

  • The Manor of Owston was at one time held by David, King of Scotland. The manorial rights lapsed in 1926.
     
  • The Manor House faces the village street to the south-east of the church. It is a two-story ironstone house with limestone dressings and dates from the early 18th century.
     
  • The Manor House was the residence of John George GILFORD, a farmer, in 1912.
     
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Maps

  • See our Maps page for additional resources.
     

You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SK776079 (Lat/Lon: 52.663274, -0.854052), Owston which are provided by:

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Names, Geographical

  • Owston was anciently called "Olveston, Osulveston, Wolneston and Ouston".
     
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Politics & Government

  • Owston was an ancient parish in Leicestershire and became a Civil Parish when those were established.
     
  • The parish was in the Framland Hundred (or Wapentake) in the 1849 "Post Office Directory, Leicester and Rutlandshire".
     
  • The parish lies in the Gartree Hundred (or Wapentake) in the southern (or Eastern) division of the county.
     
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Poor Houses, Poor Law

  • The parish apparently had its own poorhouse in 1803 and was paying for a poorhouse master to run the place.
     
  • As a result of the 1834 Poor Law Amendment Act, this parish became part of the Billesdon Poorlaw Union.
     
  • Bastardy cases would be heard in the Melton Mowbray petty session hearings.
     
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Population

 Year Inhabitants
1801 176
1811 216
1841 213
1871 181
1881 189
1891 136
1901 127
1911 121
1921 142
1931 125
1951 110
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Schools

  • A National School was built here in 1856 by Frederick PALMER of Withcote, but closed in 1906. This old school stood on the north-east side of the main street.
     
  • The Public Elementary School (formerly National School) was re-opened in 1913 for 40 children.
     
  • Prior to 1913 the children of this place attended the school first at Somerby then in 1908 at Knossington.
     
  • The Public Elementary School was converted to a junior school in 1920. This school was amalgamated with Knossington's in 1947. By 1961 the old ironstone building had been partly converted to a garage
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