Place:Stamford, Lincolnshire, England

Alt namesStanfordsource: Domesday Book (1985) p 174; Oxford: English Place Names (1960) p 436
Steanfordsource: Oxford: English Place Names (1960) p 436
TypeTown, Borough (municipal)
Coordinates52.65°N 0.483°W
Located inLincolnshire, England     (300 - )
Also located inKesteven, England     (1889 - 1974)
See alsoSouth Kesteven District, Lincolnshire, Englanddistrict municipality covering the area since 1974
Contained Places
St Martin Churchyard
Stamford Baron ( 1930 - present )
source: Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names
source: Family History Library Catalog

the following text is based on an article in Wikipedia

Stamford is a town on the River Welland in Lincolnshire, England, 92 miles (148 km) north of London on the A1. The population at the 2001 census was 21,800 including the adjacent parish of St. Martin's Without (or Stamford Baron). The figure given for the 2011 census was 19,700, but this may not include St. Martin's.

In terms of local government, since April 1974, Stamford has been within the areas of Lincolnshire County (upper tier) and South Kesteven District Council (lower tier); previous to that it had been a municipal borough in the Parts of Kesteven section of Lincolnshire.

It is situated on the north bank of the River Welland, in a southwesterly protrusion of Lincolnshire, between Rutland to the north and west, and Peterborough to the south. It borders Northamptonshire to the southwest.

The town has 17th and 18th-century stone buildings, older timber-framed buildings and five medieval parish churches (see note under Research Tips below). Tourism is an important "industry".



the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

Roman and Medieval Stamford

The Romans built Ermine Street across what is now Burghley Park and forded the River Welland to the west of Stamford, eventually reaching Lincoln. They also built a town to the north at Great Casterton on the River Gwash. In 61 CE Boudica followed the Roman legion Legio IX Hispana across the river. The Anglo-Saxons later chose Stamford as the main town, being on a larger river than the Gwash.

The place-name Stamford is first attested in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, where it appears as Steanford in 922 and Stanford in 942. It appears as Stanford in the Domesday Book of 1086. The name means "stony ford".

In 972 King Edgar made Stamford a borough. The Anglo-Saxons and Danes faced each other across the river. The town had grown as a Danish settlement at the lowest point that the Welland could be crossed by ford or bridge. Stamford was the only one of the Five Boroughs of the Danelaw not to become a county town. Initially a pottery centre making Stamford Ware, it had gained fame by the Middle Ages for its production of the woollen cloth known as Stamford cloth or haberget, which "In Henry III's reign... was well known in Venice."

Stamford was a walled town,[1] but only a small portion of the walls remains. Stamford became an inland port on the Great North Road, the latter superseding Ermine Street in importance. Notable buildings in the town include the medieval Browne's Hospital, several churches and the buildings of Stamford School, a public school founded in 1532.[1]

A Norman castle was built about 1075 and apparently demolished in 1484.[1]Cite error 4; Invalid call; no input specified The site stood derelict until the late 20th century, when it was built over and now includes a bus station and a modern housing development. A small part of the curtain wall survives at the junction of Castle Dyke and Bath Row.

In 1333–1334, a group of students and tutors from Merton and Brasenose colleges, dissatisfied with conditions at the university, left Oxford to found a rival college at Stamford. Oxford and Cambridge universities petitioned Edward III, and the King ordered the closure of the college and the return of the students to Oxford. MA students at Oxford were obliged to take an oath: "You shall also swear that you will not read lectures, or hear them read, at Stamford, as in a University study, or college general." This remained in force until 1827. The site and limited remains of the former Brazenose College, Stamford, where Oxford secessionists lived and studied, now form part of Stamford School.

Stamford has been hosting an annual fair since the Middle Ages. It is mentioned in Shakespeare's Henry IV, Part 2 (Act 3, Scene 2). Held in mid-Lent, it is now the largest street fair in Lincolnshire and among the largest in the country. On 7 March 1190, crusaders at the fair led a pogrom, in which many Stamford Jews were massacred.

Tudor and Stuart Stamford

By the early 1500s the wool and broadcloth industry in England, on which Stamford depended, had declined significantly. Stamford was sufficiently poor, financially and demographically, that in 1548 it had to amalgamate its eleven parishes into six and its population had reduced to 800.

However, by the second half of the 17th century, after almost 150 years of stagnation, the population started to increase. As Stamford emerged into the 17th century, leather and fibre working (in the widest sense; weavers, ropers and tailors) were the main activities along with wood and stone working.

In the 1660s the various efforts to make the River Welland navigable again were finally successful. Stamford then became a centre for the malting trade as the barley from nearby fenlands to the east and heathlands to the north and west could make its way more easily and cheaper to the town.

The Great North Road passed through Stamford. It had always been a halting town for travellers; Henry VIII, Queen Elizabeth, James I and Charles I all passed through and it had been a post station for the postal service journey in Elizabeth’s reign. By the later 17th century roads start to be used more for longer distance travelling. In 1663 an Act of Parliament was passed to set up turnpikes on the Great North Road, and this was to make a notable difference to Stamford’s fortunes in the following century.

During the English Civil War local loyalties were split. Thomas Hatcher MP was a Parliamentarian. Royalists used Wothorpe and Burghley as defensive positions. In the summer of 1643 the Royalists were besieged at Burghley on 24 July after a defeat at Peterborough on 19 July. The army of Viscount Campden was heavily outnumbered and surrendered the following day.

Bull Run

For over 600 years Stamford was the site of the Stamford bull run, held annually on 13 November, St Brice's day, until 1839.[1] Local tradition says it began after William de Warenne, 5th Earl of Surrey had seen two bulls fighting in the meadow beneath his castle. Some butchers came to part the combatants and one bull ran into the town. The earl mounted his horse and rode after the animal; he enjoyed the sport so much that he gave the meadow where the fight began to the butchers of Stamford, on condition that they continue to provide a bull to be run in the town every 13 November.[1]

Victorian period to 21st century

The East Coast Main Line would have gone through Stamford, as an important postal town at the time, but resistance led to routing it instead through Peterborough, whose importance and size increased at Stamford's expense.

During the Second World War, the area round Stamford contained several military sites, including RAF station, airborne encampments and a prisoner-of-war camp. Within the town, Rock House held the headquarters of Stanisław Sosabowski and the staff of the Polish 1st Independent Parachute Brigade. A memorial plaque was unveiled there in 2004.

Stamford Museum occupied a Victorian building in Broad Street from 1980 until June 2011, when it succumbed to Lincolnshire County Council budget cuts. Some exhibits have been moved to a "Discover Stamford" space at the town library and to Stamford Town Hall.

Research Tips

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.

  • Maps provided online by A Vision of Britain through Time show all the parishes and many villages and hamlets. (Small local reorganization of parishes took place in the 1930s led to differences between the latter two maps.):
  • FindMyPast now has a large collection of Lincolnshire baptisms, banns, marriages and burials now available to search by name, year, place and parent's names. This is a pay website. (blog dated 16 Sep 2016)
  • GENUKI's page on Lincolnshire's Archive Service gives addresses, phone numbers, webpages for all archive offices, museums and libraries in Lincolnshire which may store old records and also presents a list entitled "Hints for the new researcher" which may include details of which you are not aware. These suggestions are becoming more and more outdated, but there's no telling what may be expected in a small library.
  • GENUKI also has pages of information on individual parishes, particularly ecclesiastical parishes. The author may just come up with morsels not supplied in other internet-available sources.
  • Deceased Online now has records for 11 cemeteries and two crematoria in Lincolnshire. This includes Grimsby's Scartho Road cemetery, Scartho Road crematorium, and Cleethorpes cemetery, council records for the City of Lincoln and Gainsborough, and older church records from The National Archives for St Michael's in Stamford, and St Mark's in Lincoln, dating back to 1707. This is a pay website.
  • A Vision of Britain through Time gives a long list of local parishes of the Church of England within Stamford, each of which would have had its own records of baptisms, marriages and burials. GENUKI has more details about the largest of these.
This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original content was at Stamford, Lincolnshire. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with WeRelate, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.