"TOWCESTER, a parish and market town in the hundred of the same name, county Northampton, 8½ miles S.W. of Northampton, 12 from Daventry, and 4 from the Blisworth station on the London and North-Western railway, with which it is connected by a short branch line, It is situated on the right bank of the river Tow or Tove, and on the line of the ancient Watling Street. The parish includes, besides the town of Towcester, the hamlets of Caldecote, Handley, and Wood Burcote. ... It is mentioned in Domesday book as Tovecestre, and was then a place of importance. The town consists chiefly of one long street and two smaller ones, which are well paved and lighted with gas, under the direction of the feoffees of the charities of Archdeacon Sponne. ... The population in 1851 was 2,478, and in 1861, 2,715. There is a townhall and police station, erected in 1852, a new bank, and a branch of the Northampton savings-bank. There are several maltings and one large brewery, but the principal industries are the manufacture of boots and shoes for exportation, and pillow lace. Petty sessions are held every alternate Tuesday, and a county court monthly. Towcester Poor-law Union comprises 23 parishes and townships. This living was held by Pope Boniface VIII. at the time of his election to the Papal throne in 1294. The living is a vicarage in the diocese of Peterborough, value £300, in the patronage of the Bishop of Lichfield. The church, dedicated to St. Laurence, is of the 11th century, ... The Baptists, Wesleyans, Independents, and Johnsonians have each a chapel. The grammar school, founded in 1552, has an income from endowment of £65, and occupies the chantry-house, erected by Archdeacon Sponne in 1449. There are 22 boys on the foundation, the school is now in abeyance for a short time. A National school-house was erected in 1850, at a cost of £1,350. The charities belonging to the town are numerous, including six almshouses founded by Thomas Bickerstaff in 1650, which have recently been rebuilt. There are a book-club, theological library, and reading society. The principal seats in the vicinity are Easton House, of Sir T. Hesketh, Bart., ... Wakefield Lawn, of the Duke of Grafton; Whittlebury Lodge, of Lord Southampton; Sholebrook Lodge, and Park View. Market-day is on Tuesday. Fairs are held on 12th May and 29th October."[From The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland (1868). Transcribed by Colin Hinson ©2003]
- Ask for a calculation of the distance from Towcester to another place.
Mary Taylor, of Towcester, has compiled some Towcester family trees and posted them on the Rootsweb WorldConnect site at http://worldconnect.rootsweb.com/cgi-bin/igm.cgi?db=towcester.
Mary Taylor has also kindly offered to provide a look-up facility for the following Towcester records. She can be contacted by e-mail at marytaylor[at]taylorbandm.plus[dot]com :
- Baptisms: 1706 - 1732, 1735 - 1867 (all indexed)
- Marriages: 1706 - 1868 (all indexed)
- Burials: 1706 - 1720, 1744 - 1872 (all indexed)
- Banns: 1823 - 1893
- Towcester Independant Chapel - Baptisms 1796 - 1836 (indexed)
- Birth records for Towcester Baptist Church 1781 - 1836 (indexed)
- Membership records for Towcester Baptist Church 1784 - 1945
- Membership records for North End Chapel, Towcester, from its foundation in 1815, at nearby Duncote, until its closure at Towcester in 1894
- Towcester Methodist Circuit Register 1806 - 1837, and Towcester entries only to 1869 (indexed)
- Monumental Inscriptions - Extracts from Churchyard and Cemetery
- 1841, 1851, 1861, 1881, 1891 and 1901 Censuses for Towcester
- Towcester strays from the 1881 Census
- List of Settlement Certificates 1698 - 1793
- Northampton Hospital Patients Journal (Towcester extracts) 1744 - 1825
- Towcester Militia 1777, 1781, 1796 and 1817
- List of those who served in the First World War (from St Lawrence Church)
- Hair Powder Tax 1796 - 1797
- Land Tax 1778, 1786, 1801 and 1826
- Window Tax 1778
- Towcester Wills held at Northampton Record Office, 1750 - 1857 - list with some extracts.
- Towcester people extracted from the Deaths register for Towcester Workhouse, 1837 - 1930.
- Towcester Vestry Minutes 1816 - 1825, small claims by the poor of the town (extracts only).
You can see the administrative areas in which Towcester has been placed at times in the past. Select one to see a link to a map of that particular area.
You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SP684490 (Lat/Lon: 52.134924, -1.002587), Towcester which are provided by:
- Google Maps
- StreetMap (Current Ordnance Survey maps)
- Bing (was Multimap)
- OldMaps (Old Ordnance Survey maps.)
- Old Maps Online (Other old maps.)
- National Library of Scotland (Old Ordnance Survey maps)
- Vision of Britain (Click "Historical units & statistics" for administrative areas.)
- English Jurisdictions in 1851 (Unfortunately the LDS have removed the facility to enable us to specify a starting location, you will need to search yourself on their map.)
- Magic (Geographic information) (Click + on map if it doesn't show)
- GeoHack (Links to on-line maps and location specific services.)