South Scarle


"South Scarle is a pleasant village, 7 miles north-north-east of Newark, including within its parish the township of Besthorpe. South Scarle contains 170 inhabitants and 1,540 acres of land, of the rateable value of £1,288 11s.
The church, dedicated to St Helen, is a discharge vicarage, valued in the King's books at £5 2s 6d, now £168, with Girton perpetual curacy annexed. The prebendary of South Scarle in Lincoln Cathedral is patron and appropriator, and the Rev. Francis Baron-de-Paravieloi the incumbent. The tithe was commuted in 1842, the large tithe for £214 12s 3d, and the small tithe for £80 2s 6d, and about 22 acres of glebe belongs to the vicarage, purchased with Queen Anne's Bounty. The vicarage house, a commodious residence, is in Besthorpe. A Methodist chapel was erected in 1829, and enlarged in 1839, and has a Sunday School.
The Duke of Newcastle is lord of the manor of Moreland, which is partly copyhold and comprises this parish and Girton, and is held by his Grace of the crown, for the annual rent of £23 4s 5¾d. The Hall is a neat residence, near the church, and is the property and seat of Miss Mary Edmonds. The poor have an annuity of 26s 8d out of Griffin Bridge Close, and the interest of £20, left in 1754 by Edward Ward."
[WHITE's "Directory of Nottinghamshire," 1853]


Archives & Libraries

The Library at Newark will prove useful in your research.



  • The parish has a "new" Cemetery on Church Road, just west of the village.
  • Richard CROFT has a photograph of the New Cemetery on Geo-graph, taken in July, 2007.


  • The parish was in the North Collingham sub-district of the Newark Registration District.
  • The table below gives census piece numbers, where known:
Piece No.
1841 H.O. 107 / 862
1861 R.G. 9 / 2476
1871 R.G. 10 / 3539
1881 R.G. 11 / 3373
1891 R.G. 12 / 2711

Church History

  • The Anglican parish church is dedicated to Saint Helen (or Helena).
  • Parts of the church fabric date from the 12th century and may include older portions.
  • The western tower was rebuilt or completed in the 14th century.
  • The church was partially restored in 1871.
  • The church tower and porch were repaired in 1898.
  • Richard CROFT has a photograph of St. Helena's Church on Geo-graph, taken in September, 2006.
  • David THOMPSON has a photograph of the Church tower on Geo-graph, taken in June, 2016.
  • Roger GEACH has a frontal view of the Church and churchyard on Geo-graph, taken in February, 2010.
  • Julian P. GUFFOGG has a photograph of the Church interior on Geo-graph, taken in November, 2015.
  • Holy Trinity Chapel was the church in Besthorpe township, erected in 1844.
  • Chris MORGAN has a photograph of Holy Trinity church on Geo-graph, taken in February, 2016.

Church Records

  • The Anglican parish register dates from 1680 for baptisms, 1684 for burials and 1685 for marriages. It is in good condition.
  • Also, you can search the East Trent Genealogy site for church records.
  • The church was in the rural deanery of Collingham.
  • There was a Methodist chapel in South Scarle in 1829.
  • There was a second Methodist chapel in Besthorpe before 1869.
  • The Independents had chapel in Besthorpe before 1869.

Civil Registration

  • The parish was in the North Collingham sub-district of the Newark Registration District.
  • Civil Registration began in July, 1837.

Description & Travel

South Scarle is a parish and two townships: South Scarle and Besthorpe. It lies 7 miles north-east of Newark-on-Trent and 132 miles north of the city of London. The parish is bordered on the north and east sides by Lincolnshire and covers almost 1,050 acres.

Besthorpe  is 1.5 miles west-north-west from Scarle. Graham HOGG has a photograph of the Besthorpe Village Sign on Geo-graph, taken in December, 2016.

If you are planning a visit:

  • By automobile, take the A46 trunk road north-east out of Newark-on-Trent toward Lincoln. Turn north at the signs for Collingham and pass through that village to reach South Scarle. Besthorpe would be to the left, near the River Fleet.
  • David THOMPSON has a photograph of the Village Sign on Geo-graph, taken in June, 2016. The village could clearly use your talent and artistry to enhance their signage.
You can see pictures of South Scarle which are provided by:






Historical Geography

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



  • Parish farms and buildings were damaged by a severe flood of the River Trent in February, 1795.
  • Besthorpe was inundated by a severe flood on 24 October, 1875.
  • The Lord Nelson Public House in Besthorpe was managed by Arthur HEATHERSHAW in 1911.
  • Graham HOGG has a photograph of The Lord Nelson Inn on Geo-graph, taken in September, 2016.

The Newark Great War Bulletin for November 22nd, 1915 tells us that gamekeeper William LIDGETT of this parish won a silver challenge cup at the Newark and District Cage Birds Society 6th Annual Show for his Australian Cockatoo.



  • Richard CROFT has a photograph of the gates to South Scarle Hall on Geo-graph, taken in July, 2007.
  • South Scarle Hall was restored around 1860 by its owner, Michael COTTON.
  • Besthorpe Villa had been converted to a Boarding School for young gentlemen before 1869 by its owner, Richard PIGOTT.


  • See our Maps page for additional resources.

You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SK848640 (Lat/Lon: 53.166375, -0.732993), South Scarle which are provided by:


Military History

In 1911, Captain William Coape OATES, J.P. resided in the parish. He would reach the rank of Lt.-Colonel and obtain a D.S.O. There is a portrait online. He would die in Newark in 1942.

The Newark Great War Bulletin for December 7, 1914 tells us that two men of Besthorpe township, G. H. ARNOLD and R. SANDERS, had been appointed as "Special Constables" to assist the police force in the event of a German invasion.

There is a brass Great War Memorial plaque mounted on the wall of St. Helen's Church, which you can view at the Nottinghamshire War Memorials site.


Military Records

The Newark Great War Bulletin for January 1st, 1915 tells us who volunteered from Besthorpe to fight in the Great War (not all may have been accepted).

These are the men from the parish who fell in World War One:

  1. private Michael Herbert Edmonds COLTON, Sherwood Rangers
  2. 2nd Lt. Stanley Edmonds COLTON, 1st Bn Northumberland Fusiliers
  3. private John Henry HARNESS, 2nd Bn. Lincs Regt.
  4. private Ernest Wright THROPE, 2/8th Bn Sherwood Foresters

The Newark Great War Bulletin for June 14th, 1915 tells us that lieutenant John Sherbrooke Coape OATES was "slightly wounded" in the shoulder. The article also mentions private Joseph NICHOLSON.

The Beeston War Memorial Book is in a box in Besthorpe Holy Trinity Church. These are the names recorded in the book:

  1. Collinson, Edwin
  2. Cordy, Charles
  3. Hill, Alfred
  4. Hopkinson, David
  5. Hopkinson, Frank
  6. Hopkinson, Fred
  7. Hopkinson, Harry
  8. Hopkinson, John
  9. North, Harry Johnson
  10. Oates, John Sherbrooke Coape
  11. Oates, William Coape
  12. Wilkinson, William

Politics & Government

  • This place was an ancient parish in county Nottingham and became a modern Civil Parish when those were established.
  • The parish was in the northern division of the ancient Newark Wapentake (Hundred) in the southern division of the county.
  • Besthorpe township was split off as a separate Civil Parish in December, 1866.
  • Jonathan THACKER has a photograph of the Besthorpe Village Hall on Geograph, taken in February, 2011. You should drop in when it is open and ask for a copy of the schedule of forth-coming events.
  • District governance is provided by the Newark and Sherwood District Council.

Poor Houses, Poor Law

  • Griffin's Bridge Dole paid £1 6s. 8p. to the poor in two equal payments on Good Friday and St. Thomas' Day.
  • Edward WARD's Charity, established in 1754, was the interest in £20, which was paid to the poor annually.
  • Bastardy cases would be heard in the Newark petty session hearings every other Wednesday.
  • The Common Land was enclosed here in 1842.
  • After the Poor Law Amendment Act reforms of 1834, the parish became part of the Newark Poor Law Union.


 Year South Scarle Besthorpe
1801 119 216
1851 170 340
1861 175 338
1881 156 192
1891 150 178
1901 130 159


  • In 1869 a National School is reported in South Scarle.
  • A School Board was formed in Beesthorpe in 1875 to embrace the area of South Scarle, Besthorpe, Girton and Meering.
  • A Board School was built in the centre of the village in 1879.
  • Richard CROFT has a photograph of the Old School at Besthorpe on Geograph, taken in March, 2012. That school has been converted to residential use.