Houghton, Huntingdonshire

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Houghton Mill 2.jpg
Houghton Mill
Grid reference: TL281724
Location: 52°20’6"N, 0°7’8"W
Population: 2,559  (2001)
Post town: Huntingdon
Postcode: PE28
Dialling code: 01480
Local Government
Council: Huntingdonshire

Houghton is a village in Huntingdonshire, standing on the north bank of the River Great Ouse between Huntingdon and St Ives on the A1123 road, and not far south of RAF Wyton. On the river stands the village's best known feature; Houghton Mill.

The village

There are a number of old houses of interest, particularly in the village green and near the playing field. The village centre is a picturesque area, known as "the green" (although no grass has grown there for very many years). A thatched clock tower stands here. On the green there is a statue to Potto Brown, and a traditional old water pump and red phone box.

It is possible to walk from Houghton to Hemingford Abbots across the flood meadows and to St Ives along the Thicket Path. There is a nature reserve along the Thicket Path known as Houghton Meadows ("Far Close") that shows markings of traditional ridge and furrow farming.

In the village centre there is a War Memorial hall. On Houghton Hill there is a cemetery.

The playing field is used for football, tennis and cricket. The field was donated to the village by Mr Anderson, whose family used to farm in the village. On the field there is a bowling club, cricket pavilion, tennis courts, football pitch and a scout hut.

The old home of artist Charles Whymper stands on the green. He was a relative of Edward Whymper who led the first successful ascent of the Matterhorn, a victory which turned to tragedy when a rope snapped on the descent, sending some members of the team plunging to their deaths. A model of the mountain is in the garden and just visible from the green.

The village has two pubs: Three Horseshoes and Three Jolly Butchers.

Punts and rowing boats can be hired at the riverside across the watermill footbridge.

A disused railway line runs through Houghton near the river.

Houghton Mill in the 1960s
Village sign


Houghton is mentioned in the Domesday Book and described as "Hoctune".

It has had a number of serious floods.

The first RAF sortie of the Second World War was flown out of nearby RAF Wyton.

Houghton Mill

Houghton has a beautiful old watermill owned by the National Trust that is still used for demonstrating flour milling.

Parish church

The parish church, St Mary's, is a fine Norman church.

Nearby also is a former chapel which has been converted into a retreat centre.

Feast week

Every summer (normally the first fortnight of July) there is a week of community events, entitled "feast week". This has included a fun run, fayre and other sporting and fancy dress events.

Outside links