"Caunton is a large but indifferently built village and parish, upon a small rivulet, 5 miles north-east by north of Southwell, and 6 miles north-west of Newark. Its parish has 539 inhabitants and 2,961 acres of land, of which 1,600 acres are in Caunton, 800 acres in Beesthorpe, and 500 in Knapthorpe. These form three separate manors, containing about 176 acres of woods. Lord Middleton and Samuel Hole Esq. are the principal owners of Caunton, and the latter is lord of the manor, and resides in the Manor House, a handsome modern mansion. The church, dedicated to St Andrew, is a vicarage, valued in the King's books at £4 2s 1d, now £140, with Beesthorpe annexed. The Bishops of Ripon and Manchester are joint patrons of the living, the latter of which has the next presentation. The Rev. Samuel Reynolds Hole B.A. is the incumbent. The church is an ancient structure with nave, chancel, aisles and tower, in which are three bells. A stone coffin, dug up in the church-yard a few years ago, stands in the vestry. At the enclosure in 1793, 171 acres of land was awarded to the appropriator, and 124 to the vicar, in lieu of tithes."
[WHITE's "Directory of Nottinghamshire," 1853]


Archives & Libraries

The Library at Newark will prove useful in your research.



Andrew HILL provides a photograph of St. Andrew's Churchyard on Geo-graph, taken in September, 2012.



  • The parish was in the Kneesal sub-district of the Southwell Registration District.
  • There exists an 1846 "census" of 125 families done by Richard BRETT, the schoolmaster. Copies are in the Kew Archives. These may only be families with children, but the purpose of his list is not known.
  • The table below gives census piece numbers, where known:
Piece No.
1841 H.O. 107 / 865
1861 R.G. 9 / 2474
1871 R.G. 10 / 3536
1881 R.G. 11 / 3371
1891 R.G. 12 / 2709

Church History

  • The Anglican parish church is dedicated to Saint Andrew.
  • The church was originally constructed in the late 12th century, but has been extensively reworked since then.
  • This church was restored and repewed in 1869.
  • The church seats 307.
  • The church is a Grade I listed building with British Heritage.
  • Richard CROFT has a photograph of St. Andrew's Church on Geo-graph, taken in October, 2006.
  • Richard CROFT also has a photograph of the nave interior on Geo-graph, taken in September, 2016.

Church Records

  • The Anglican parish register dates from 1709 for all entries.
  • The Anglican parish register from 1564 to 1709 is missing.
  • The church was in the rural deanery of Southwell.
  • The Wesleyan Methodists had a chapel built here before 1858.
  • Alan MURRAY-RUST has a photograph of the former Wesleyan Methodist chapel on Geo-graph, taken in July, 2014.
  • The Primitive Methodists had a chapel here before 1858.
  • Alan MURRAY-RUST has another photograph of the former Primitive Methodist chapel on Geo-graph, taken in July, 2014.

Civil Registration

  • The parish was in the Kneesal sub-district of the Southwell Registration District.
  • Civil Registration began in July, 1837.

Description & Travel

Caunton is both a village and a parish about 129 miles north of London, 5 miles north-west of Newark and 7 miles south-east of Ollerton. The parish covers just over 3,100 acres. Beesthorpe and Knapthorpe are hamlets in the parish. Beesthorpe is a manor about a mile west of Caunton village.

Caunton village is on the road between Newark and Ollerton. If you are planning a visit:

  • By automobile, take the A616 arterial road north-west out of Newark. Caunton will be on your right.
  • Alan MURRAY-RUST has a photgraph of the inviting Bus Shelter on Main Street on geo-graph, taken in July, 2014.
You can see pictures of Caunton which are provided by:




Historical Geography

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



The village is mentioned in the 1086 Domesday Book, together with the five outlying manors that ring the southern half of the parish.

Graham HOGG has a photograph of the Plough Inn on Geo-graph, taken in August, 2016.

Graham HOGG also has a photograph of the Caunton Beck Inn on Caunton Beck on Geo-graph, taken in August, 2016. This pub used to be called the "Hole Arms".

Alan MURRAY-RUST has a photograph of The Caunton Beck Pub.r on Geo-graph, taken in July, 20146.



  • Beesthorpe Hall  was the residence of Captain Edwin John POLLARD, RN, in 1881, but the property of Samuel Boteler BRISTOWE.
  • Captain POLLARD was a midshipman on the HMS Victory at Trafalgor. He is credited with killing the French sniper who shot Admiral Nelson. Pollard married in 1822 and can be found in this parish in the 1881 census.
  • Graham HOGG has a photograph of the gateway to Caunton Manor on Geo-graph, taken in August, 2016.


  • See our Maps page for additional resources.

You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SK745600 (Lat/Lon: 53.131964, -0.887958), Caunton which are provided by:


Military History

  • Peter TURNER has a photograph of the War Memorial by the church entrance on Geo-graph, taken in August, 2012.
  • Alan MURRAY-RUST also has a photograph of the War Memorial built into the churchyard wall on Geo-graph, taken in July, 2014.
  • Inside the church on the south wall there are two framed illuminated Rolls of Honour listing all the men and women of the parish who served in the two World Wars.
  • In addition there is a brass tablet to a sailor lost in the Boer War.

Military Records

There are the 7 names listed on the War MemoriaI monument:

  1. Alexander ANTCLIFFE
  2. George William BARKER
  3. Sydney GIBSON
  4. George Samuel MOODY
  5. John Frederick POTTERTON
  6. George Henry SMITH
  7. Francis Arthur WOMBWELL

George Henry SMITH is listed on the memorial as George W. SMITH.

Details on these individuals can be found at the Nottingham War Memorials web site.


Names, Geographical

Spellings in mediaeval documents are variants of “Calneton”, reflecting the traditional pronunciation, approximately “cahnt’n”, which was regularly used until the second half of the 20th century. It is only in the last 40 or 50 years that the modern pronunciation of “cawnton” has become the norm.


Politics & Government

  • This place was an ancient parish in Nottingham county and became a modern Civil Parish when those were established.
  • The parish was in the northern division of the ancient Thurgaton Wapentake (Hundred) in the southern division of the county.
  • You may contact the local Parish Council regarding civic or political matters, but they are NOT funded to help you with family history searches.
  • District governance is provided by the Newark and Sherwood District Council.

Poor Houses, Poor Law

  • Bastardy cases would be heard in the Newark petty session hearings every other Wednesday.
  • The Common Lands were enclosed here in 1793.
  • As a result of the 1834 Poor Law Amendment Act reforms, this parish became part of the Southwell Poor Law Union.


 Year Population
1801 366
1841 539
1851 611
1861 596
1881 401
1901 345


  • A Parochial School was built here in 1840.