Broughton, Northamptonshire

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Broughton spire, Northants.JPG
The broach spire of St Andrew’s, Broughton
Grid reference: SP834755
Location: 52°22’16"N, 0°46’30"W
Population: 2,208  (2011)
Post town: Kettering
Postcode: NN14
Dialling code: 01536
Local Government
Council: Kettering

Broughton is a large village in Northamptonshire, with a population at the 2011 census of 2,208.

The village is to be found around two miles south-west of Kettering, next to the A43 road, a raod which has bypassed Broughton itself since 1984.

Broughton is recorded as "Burtone" in the Domesday Book of 1086.

About the village

The parish church is St Andrew’s, in the heart of the village. It is a mostly early 14th century church though the chancel was rebuilt during a Victorian restoration in 1828. The current church incorporates part of a 12th century Norman aisleless church at the south-west angle, including the reset south doorway with colonettes, scallop capitals and zigzags.[1]

The village has some notable Jacobean houses.[2]

Broughton currently has one pub, The Red Lion; it used to also have The Sun but that closed. A protest to keep the pub running was fought for by driving a tank to the council offices, but no appeal has been won. The village also has three shops. It used to have a separate post office; that is now part of one of the shops. Many years ago, it had a cinema, five bakers, 7 pubs, 6 shops, a petrol station, and a butcher.

Tin Can Band

An ancient custom of the village, is that of the "Tin Can Band". It is held annually in mid-December, when, at midnight, a group of people walk around the village making as much noise as possible by banging on tin cans (anything from cans to pots, pans and metal dustbins).[3] Various reasons have been suggested for the custom, including scaring away evil spirits just before Christmas, or (less charitably) that was a kind of "rough music" to drive out gypsies.[4] Nowadays it is quite good-natured, but in the past there have been riotous scenes, especially in years when the authorities tried to prevent it happening.[5]

Outside links

("Wikimedia Commons" has material
about Broughton, Northamptonshire)


  1. CRSBI – The Corpus of Romanesque Sculpture in Britain & Ireland – St Andrew, Broughton, Northamptonshire
  2. Nikolaus Pevsner: The Buildings of England: Northamptonshire, 1961; 1973 Penguin Books ISBN 978-0-300-09632-3page 128-29
  3. John Kirpatrick, Sleeve notes for Wassail! A Traditional Celebration of an English Midwinter, John Kirpatrick et al., Fellside Records, FECD125 (1997).
  4. Information Britain: Broughton Tin Can Band, Northamptonshire
  5. Dorothy A. Grimes, Like Dew Before the Sun – Life and Language in Northamptonshire (Privately published, Stanley L Hunt (printers), Rushden, 1991), pp. 6–8. ISBN 0-9518496-0-3/