The Victoria History of the County of Northampton
V. The Hundred of Cleley
Cleley comprises a dozen parishes in the south on either side of Watling Street, and includes the royal estate, the honor of Grafton.
This new volume, the first to be published for Northamptonshire since 1937, deals with a group of a dozen parishes in the south of the county, on either side of Watling Street between Towcester and Stony Stratford. Essentially a group of typical Midland open-field parishes, the main interest of the area lies in the creation of a great royal estate, the honor of Grafton, in 1542, which occupied about half the hundred. In 1706 the honor passed to the secondDuke of Grafton under a grant made by his grandfather, Charles II. The dukes remained the principal owners in the district until a series of sales just after the First World War.Researched with the thoroughness for which the Victoria County History has long been well known, and illustrated with numerous maps and plates, this volume will be of great interest to local residents who wish to know about the past history of their community, and also to a widerange of academic readers, especially historians interested in landed estates between the sixteenth and the twenty-first century.
"Drawing upon an impressive range of sources, [it] achieves exhaustive coverage of individual parishes including manorial and ecclesiastical aspects, agricultural and ecomic history, local government, landscape and settlement, trades and crafts, and much more besides. ...high quality of the line drawings and maps, excellence of photographs. AGRICULTURAL HISTORY REVIEW A magnificient piece of detailed scholarship. LANDSCAPE HISTORY The detailed story that emerges in these pages is fascinating." ENGLISH HISTORICAL REVIEW