Deeping St James


Archives & Libraries

The Library at Bourne will prove useful in your research.
The Library at Spalding may also assist you in your research.



Ruth SHARVILLE has a photograph of the Priory churchyard on Geo-graph, taken in August, 2015.

Basher EYRE also has a photograph of a portion of St. James Churchyard on Geo-graph, taken in June, 2016.



  • The parish was in the Deeping sub-district of the Bourne Registration District.
  • Check our Census Resource page for county-wide resources.
  • The table below gives census piece numbers, where known:
Piece No.
1841 H.O. 107 / 617
1851 H.O. 107 / 2095
1861 R.G. 9 / 2319
1871 R.G. 10 / 3317
1881 R.G. 11 / 3199

Church History

  • A Benedictine Priory was founded here in 1139 by Baldwin WAKE (of WAC). The priory was dissolved in 1540.
  • The Anglican parish church is dedicated to St. James the Apostle.
  • The church is seldom called "St. James". Locals and congregants refer to the church as "The Priory Church".
  • The church used to be much larger and portions are dated to Norman times. Reputedly it was built in Henry III's reign (1207-1252).
  • A tower (spire) was added in 1717.
  • The church seats 800.
  • There is a photograph of St. James's Church on the Wendy PARKINSON Church Photos web site.
  • Here is a photo of the church, taken by Ron COLE (who retains the copyright):

Church Records

  • Anglican parish registers exist from 1674, but I.G.I. entries go back to 1562.
  • We have a partial Parish Register Extract in a text file. Your additions and corrections are welcome.
  • Deeping St. James is in the Aveland and Ness Deanery. You may wish to purchase some of the Deanery marriage indexes.
  • There was a Wesleyan Methodist chapel built in the village in 1880 to replace an older chapel. The Primitive Methodists built a chapel in 1878, followed by a new one in 1896, and the Particular Baptists in 1839. The Catholic Church was converted to a chapel in 1880 and is dedicated to Our Lady of Lincoln and St. Guthlac..
  • Basher EYRE has a photograph of the new Methodist Church on Geo-graph, taken in June, 2016.
  • For information and assistance in researching these chapels, see our non-conformist religions page.
  • Check our Church Records page for county-wide resources.

Civil Registration

  • The parish was in the Deeping sub-district of the Bourne Registration District.
  • Check our Civil Registration page for sources and background on Civil Registration which began in July, 1837.

Correctional Institutions

  • The village still has its 18th century lockup, constructed on the site of a 15th century wayside cross.
  • Jo TURNER has a photograph of the Market Cross/Lockup on Geo-graph, taken in April, 2011.
  • The lockup would only be used for short-term prisoners. To see if any of your relatives were kept here, consult the local newspapers.

Description & Travel

Deeping St. James is both a village and parish a few miles north of Peterborough, 11 miles southwest of Spalding and 89 miles north of London. The River Welland is the parish's south boundary. Across the river lies Northamptonshire. Market Deeping lies to the north and west. The area is flat fenland, drained by many small canals, including the South Drove Drain. The parish covers about 4,300 acres and includes the hamlet of Frognall, about a half mile north of the church.

Deeping St. James is often refered to as a suburb of Market Deeping. Eastgate is a hamlet southeast of Deeping St. James village. If you are planning a visit:

  • By automobile, the A16 trunk road runs through the north side of the village.
  • Find bus, car hire and train service via our Transport page.
  • Paul BRYAN has a photograph of the River Welland at Eastgate on Geo-graph, taken in May, 2014.
  • Craig PUTTERILL has a photograph of the Old Packhorse Bridge over the Welland on Geo-graph, taken in October, 2019.
  • See our Touring page for additional resources.
You can see pictures of Deeping St James which are provided by:





The WATERTON family of this parish were primarily Catholics.


Historical Geography

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



  • The Prince of Wales Oak tree was planted in 1841 to commemorate the birth of the future Edward VII. It is in the car park next to the church. Robert HARVEY has a photograph of the Prince of Wales Oak on Geo-graph, taken in January, 2020.
  • Alex McGREGOR has a photograph of the Bell Inn on Geo-graph, taken in August, 2016. The Inn is by the River Welland on Bridge Street.
  • J. THOMAS has a photograph of the Waterton Arms P.H. on Geo-graph, taken in September, 2012. The Pub is located at 68 Church Street.
  • These are the proprietors mentioned in the old Directories for the Waterton Arms:
 Year People
1919 Mrs. Elizabeth MULLIGAN


  • The Manor House, near the church, is a large stone building. It was occupied by a farmer in 1841. It is said to be the remains of the Priory, but many buildings in the village were constructed from the stones and bricks from the Priory.
  • The Manor House was unoccupied in 1918.
  • The Crown holds the manorial rights to Deeping St. James.


  • See our Maps page for additional resources.

You can see maps centred on OS grid reference TF150097 (Lat/Lon: 52.672947, -0.30015), Deeping St James which are provided by:


Military Records

There is a list of the names on the Roll of Honour at the Roll of Honour website.


Names, Geographical

  • The name Deeping is from the Old English Deoping, for "deep or Low place".
    [A. D. Mills, "A Dictionary of English Place-Names," Oxford University Press, 1991]
  • The parish is also found listed in old records as East Deeping.
  • John BLAND tells us (2004) that the locals often refer to the place as "Jimmy Deeping".

Politics & Government

  • This place was an ancient parish in Lincolnshire and became a modern Civil Parish when those were established.
  • The parish was in the ancient Ness Wapentake in the South Kesteven district in the parts of Kesteven.
  • In April, 1931, the parish was reduced by 60 acres transfered to Langtoft Civil Parish, but the parish also gained 69 acres from Market Deeping Civil Parish.
  • The local Deeping St. James Parish Council can be contacted, but they are NOT staffed to answer family hsitory questions.
  • For today's district governance, contact the South Kesteven District Council.

Poor Houses, Poor Law

  • Bastardy cases were heard in the Bourne petty session hearings on Mondays.
  • In 1553, Robert TYGH left land and tenements for the poor of the parish, including schooling for their children, repair to the bridges and causeways and in such "deeds of alms" as the parish saw fit.
  • The Common Land was enclosed here in 1815.
  • This parish had its own Workhouse, erected in 1816. This building later became a school.
  • After the 1834 Poor Law Amendment Act reforms, this parish became part of the Bourne Poor Law Union.
  • Susanna BREWTON left £50 (undated) for 12 poor women of the parish. The money was used to purchase land in Northamptonshire and the rent from that was distributed to the women.


Year Inhabitants
1801 1,160
1831 1,587
1841 1,733
1851 1,849
1871 1,720
1881 1,648
1891 1,501
1901 1,513
1911 1,544

Probate Records

Ros DUNNING provides a transcript of the will of Abigail BULL of Deeping St. James.

Ros DUNNING provides a transcript of the will of John BURTON of Deeping St. James.

Ros DUNNING also provides a transcript of the will of Lawrence SHERMAN of Deeping St. James.



  • One of the schools was formerly the workhouse, erected in 1816 and rebuilt in 1890 to hold 241 children.
  • The Church Street School was formerly the Free School. It was an Infants school designed to house 113 students..
  • For more on researching school records, see our Schools Research page.


  • There is a local Deepings Heritage site. Or, contact:

    Deeping St James Family and Local History Group
    43 Eastgate
    Deeping St James, Lincs. PE6 8HH
    United Kingdom
    Tele: 01778 344-553