Kettlethorpe is a village and civil parish in the West Lindsey District of Lincolnshire, England. It is situated 10 miles (16 km) west from the city of Lincoln. The hamlet of Hardwick (a separate civil parish until at least 1974) and the village of Laughterton lie within Kettlethorpe parish. (See Hardwick for a discussion of the geographical position of the parishes in this area.)
Kettlethorpe parish church is dedicated to St. Peter and St. Paul and is a Grade II listed building dating from the 15th century with alterations in 1809 and the late 19th century, built of yellow brick and limestone. In the north wall of the sanctuary is a square stone wall plaque to John Reeke, rector (died 1597). Also in the sanctuary on the south wall is an oval marble wall plaque to Rev. Hugh Palmer (died 1799). On the north wall is a larger marble wall plaque to Charles Hall (died 1743). In the north aisle is a plaque to the Cole family, dated late 18th-century. At the west end of the nave are painted royal arms and round the side walls of the nave are 19th-century texts in red lettering. In the churchyard are the remains of a cross, dating from the 14th century with 19th-century restoration.
The ecclesiastical parish is Kettlethorpe with Fenton, part of the Saxilby Group of the Deanery of Corringham. The parish church is in Kettlethorpe.
The moat surrounding Kettlethorpe Hall survives in part on all four sides of a rectangle and presumably is the remnant of the manor later held by the Swynford family in the 14th and 15th centuries. The family included Katherine Swynford, subsequent third wife of John of Gaunt, and Duchess of Lancaster.
Today the Hall is a small country house, dating from the early 18th century built by the [Member of Parliament] Charles Hall who succeeded to the house in 1713. It then passed to the Amcotts family. It was altered and extended in the 19th century. It is Grade II listed. A gateway to the Hall, dating from the 14th century with 18th-century additions and alterations, is Grade II* listed.
There are earthwork remains of a medieval deer park, enclosed about 1383 and dis-parked around 1830. In 1383 Katherine Swynford received a licence from King Richard II to enclose land and establish a park of 300 acres (1.2 km2) within her manor of Kettlethorpe.
The settlement of Laughterton looks like a planned village, with properties of approximately equal depth on either side of a straight north-south street. Laughterton is always recorded with Kettlethorpe in tax returns.
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.