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Luddington is a village and ancient parish on the Isle of Axholme in Lincolnshire, adjacent to the border with the West Riding of Yorkshire. It is six miles north-west from Scunthorpe, six miles south-east from Goole and 18 miles north-east from Doncaster.
After the last Ice Age Luddington was covered by Lake Humber, until about 9,000 BC. When the melt water lake finally disappeared the Luddington area became dry, surrounded by wetlands, on a branch of the River Don. Luddington was amongst the last of a chain of islands in the marshlands of the Isle of Axholme, stretching from Epworth northwards. The site of St Oswald's pre-conquest church sits on an island separated from the rest of the village and River Don, in a circular enclosure, suggesting it might have been a ritual site well into the first millennium.
At the time of the Domesday survey in 1086, Luddington was the most northerly of the parishes on the Isle of Axholme, and was a river island. The River Trent was to the east, the River Don to the west and north, and the Meredyke drain to the south.
The origin of the name Luddington is pure Old English suggesting that it was an Anglo-Saxon settlement or estate belonging to "Luda"; however the area was populated before the English settlement of the 5th century. Nearby Crowle developed as a market town, leaving Luddington, like Haldenby (a nearby deserted mediæval village) as way stops on the river. The River Don was an important transport link between the Humber and the Yorkshire hinterland. The Northern Isle of Axholme has two other deserted mediæval settlements, Haldenby and Waterton, both close to Luddington.
Late mediæval decline
The Isle of Axholme as a whole went into decline in the late mediæval period. Climate change during the Little Ice Age saw the advance of marshlands, the dying of woodlands (which became bog oak) and the reduction of pasture. The river trade went into decline, partly because it silted, and party because of the development of Hull, which took trade away from inland settlements. The Black Death also had an effect. When Vermuyden drained the Isle he removed productive marshland and the River Don.
Controlled flooding of the Isle improved the fertility of the soil. Steam pumps made the drainage of the Northern Isle effective. This led to a growth in farming in the area and an increase in population. Luddington farmers developed crops, particularly potatoes, to feed the urban market. The need for labour was partly met by the migration of Irish workers to Luddington, following the Irish Famine of the 1840s. Providence Row, a collection of earth floor cottages, housed Irish labourers into the 1930s.
Post Second World War
Two public houses that existed in Luddington, closed: The Friendship in 1974, and The Blue Bell in 1994. The village post office closed at the turn of the 21st century, and the remaining public house, The Lincolnshire Arms, closed recently. In 2006 the village hosted the Luddstock music festival.
Luddington is situated at the northern edge of the county, on low-lying land which abuts the River Trent to the east. The B1392 road passes through the village centre, heading east to the bank of the Trent, and then turning south along the bank, and in the other direction, heading south-west and then west to reach Eastoft. A minor road heads north and then north-east to reach Garthorpe and Fockerby, once on opposite banks of the River Don, but since the diversion of the river as part of the drainage of Hatfield Chase, effectively one community. Just to the north of the village, a track leaves the road, providing a route to Haldenby Grange, near to which there was a railway station until 1965. The parish church is situated in fields to the north-east of the village centre.
The parish church is a Grade II listed structure, built in 1855 in Gothic Revival style. The nave has four bays, with aisles to the north and south, and a porch adjoining the south aisle. The chancel has two bays, to which is attached a vestry, and at the western end there is a three-stage tower with an octagonal broach spire. Construction is of sandstone and limestone ashlar masonry, with the roofs clad in Welsh slate. Internally, there are several church monuments which predate the construction, including a white marble Roccoco tablet to the Worsop family dating from 1758, a wall tablet to Elizabeth Lister dating from 1729, and a tablet commemorating Captain Augustus Webb, who died from wounds during the Charge of the Light Brigade at Balaclava in 1854. The building replaced an earlier mediæval church, details of which are provided by an illustration made by C Nattes in 1794, and now in the collection of Lincoln City Library. It was cruciform in shape, with a wooden steeple.
Haldenby Grange is a Grade II listed farmhouse, dating from the middle to late eighteenth century. It is built of red-brown brick, with later alterations in a lighter-coloured brick, and has a pantiled roof. It was once close to the banks of the River Don, and formed part of the deserted mediæval village of Haldenby. The village continued to the north-east, as far as Haldenby Hall, another listed building which dates from the late seventeenth century, altered in the mid-nineteenth century. It is "T"-shaped in plan, built from bricks in different colours, and with pantiles and Welsh slate roofs. It replaced the mediæval Haldenby Hall, once the residence of the Haldenby family, who are commemorated by monuments in the church at Adlingfleet. Close to Haldenby Grange is a listed barn and horse mill.
Luddington's Catholic church is dedicated to St Joseph and St Dymphna. Previously, there were two Methodist chapels, one erected by Welseyans in 1837, the other by Primitive Methodists in 1841, both now gone.
- Cory, Vernon (1985). Hatfield and Axholme – An Historical Review. Providence Press. ISBN 0-903803-15-1.
- "Luddington". Axholme Family History Society. http://www.axholme-fhs.org.uk/luddington.html. Retrieved 9 June 2012.
- Cory 1985, p. 24
- Ordnance Survey, 1:25,000 map, 2006
- National Heritage List 1083179: Church of St Oswald, Church Lane, Haldenby
- National Heritage List 1083142: Haldenby Grange Farmhouse
- National Heritage List 1309899: Haldenby Hall, Garthorpe Road
- National Heritage List 1083143: Barn and Horse Mill, Haldenby Grange
| ("Wikimedia Commons" has material
about Luddington, Lincolnshire)
- "Luddington", Genuki.org.uk. Retrieved 18 November 2011
- The Isle of Axholme, Isleofaxholme.net. Retrieved 18 November 2011
|Isle of Axholme