St Mary's, Northill
|North East Bedfordshire|
Northill is a village in Bedfordshire, within the Wixamtree Hundred. In 2001, it had a population of about 900 people. The parish of Northill includes the hamlets of Budna, Lower and Upper Caldecote, Hatch, Ickwell and Thorncote Green.
The village is about four miles to the west-north-west of Biggleswade and is centred around a T-junction, which sees the Ickwell Road meet the Bedford Road.
The village stands on a slightly elevated ridge that run from north to south, and the surrounding terrain comprises parkland and woodland. It has a school, pub and church.
St Mary the Virgin is the parish church, a large church for such a small village. It was built in the 14th century, and has the additions of later centuries. It is built of local ironstone.
The font dedicated to Francis Potts, the hymn writer. It has 17th-century painted glass windows.
Northill was the baptismal place, and possibly the birthplace, of the famous clockmaker Thomas Tompion, who built the famous Pump Room Clock in 1709 that has since seen active service in the city of Bath. Thomas Tompion's father was the village blacksmith, whose forge can still be seen on the Green at Ickwell. Sir Humphrey Winch, Lord Chief Justice of Ireland, was born in the village and baptisted here in 1555.
Northill appears in the Domesday Book of 1086 which reads: Nortigble/Nortgiue(le): Pirot and Ralph from Eudo FitzHubert, Walter from Hugh de Beauchamp; William Speke. 1 1/2 mills.
The name appears as "North Yevell" in a 1440s legal record.
The core of the village's buildings date back to the 14th century, and today's village has many examples of thatched roofing.
Aside from residential homes, Northill has a church and next door to it a public house, The Crown. There are no shops in the village nor prominent commercial entities other than its farms.
The village of Northill is known locally for being the starting place of the popular Ickwell May Day celebration that sees local floats and residents travel the mile or so down the Ickwell Road to the neighbouring village of Ickwell. There the celebrations conclude on the village green. The Northill/Ickwell May Day celebration has been in operation since at least circa 1565.
| ("Wikimedia Commons" has material|
- Northill Tourist Information – AboutBritain.com
- Plea Roll, Court of Common Pleas; Term 1. CP 40 / 717 - National Archives
- Northill - YourTotalEvent.com]