Baston is a village and parish on the edge of The Fens and in the administrative district of South Kesteven in Lincolnshire, England. The 2011 UK census reported the parish had 1,469 people in 555 households.
Like most fen-edge parishes, it was laid out more than a thousand years ago, in an elongated form, to afford the produce from a variety of habitats for the villagers. The village itself lies along the road between King Street, a road built in the second century, and Baston Fen which is on the margin of the much bigger Deeping Fen. Until the nineteenth century, the heart of Deeping Fen was a common fen on which all the surrounding villages had rights of turbary, fowling and pasture.
A significant Roman feature of Baston is the Roman road leading across the fen towards Spalding. Part of the modern fen road follows it.
At the end of the village, near King Street, was an Anglian cemetery which was in use up to about the year 500. This coincides approximately with the date of the beginning of King Arthur's exploits, as reported by the Historia Brittonum, when Arthur fought his first battle at the mouth of the River Glen and stopped the spread of Anglo-Saxon settlement for fifty years. The Anglo-Saxon cemetery, of funerary urns, was found by Rev. Edward Trollope in 1851. He found around 10 burials in 1863 and traces of another 16 were found in 1963
Like most places in Europe, Baston suffered from the plague. Some Baston plague victims are shown in burial lists. A possible plague burial was uncovered during the building of a corn dryer.
Lincolnshire is very low-lying and land had to be drained for agriculture to be successful. The larger drainage channels, many of which are parallel to each other, became boundaries between parishes. Many parishes are long and thin for this reason.
There is much fenland in Lincolnshire, particularly in the Boston and Horncastle areas. Fenlands tended to be extraparochial before the mid 1850s, and although many sections were identified with names and given the title "civil parish", little information has been found about them. Many appear to be abolished in 1906, but the parish which adopts them is not given in A Vision of Britain through Time. Note the WR category Lincolnshire Fenland Settlements which is an attempt to organize them into one list.
From 1889 until 1974 Lincolnshire was divided into three administrative counties: Parts of Holland, Parts of Kesteven and Parts of Lindsey. These formal names do not fit with modern grammatical usage, but that is what they were, nonetheless. In 1974 the northern section of Lindsey, along with the East Riding of Yorkshire, became the short-lived county of Humberside. In 1996 Humberside was abolished and the area previously in Lincolnshire was made into the two "unitary authorities" of North Lincolnshire and North East Lincolnshire. The remainder of Lincolnshire was divided into "non-metropolitan districts" or "district municipalities" in 1974. Towns, villages and parishes are all listed under Lincolnshire, but the present-day districts are also given so that places in this large county can more easily be located and linked to their wider neighbourhoods. See the WR placepage Lincolnshire, England and the smaller divisions for further explanation.