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Monday, 06 February 2012 10:19

Market Lavington - OPC Vacancy

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Market Lavington - St Mary Market Lavington - St Mary

Market Lavington Photo Gallery

Contiguous Parishes (our neighbours)

Charlton - Easterton - Orcheston St. George - Orcheston St. Mary - Potterne - Rushall - Tilshead - Urchfont - West Lavington - Wilsford


Websites of Interest

GenUKI - For information relating to Wiltshire and Market Lavington.
Wiltshire & Swindon History Centre - The Wiltshire County Archives for all historical documents and the place to obtain original copies.
Wiltshire Community History - Historical information for parishes within the Wiltshire County jurisdiction.


The Parish Church of St. Mary

St. Mary's was built mainly in 13th century replacing an earlier Norman one. While there are traces of earlier Norman work in the church, it is thought there could have been a Saxon church on this raised site.  Stones with Norman carving have been used in the medieval walling of the aisles and in the later porch. 

The church we see to today is built of ashlar and sarsen rubble and consists of a chancel with north and south vestries and a south organ chamber, an aisled and cloistered nave with a south porch and a west tower.  The east and west windows are late 13th Centrury ndicating the period of rebuilding of the Norman church.  It is likely that the nave was its present length and width at that time.  The chancel circa 1300, the north vestry about 1340 and the rest of the nave 14th century.  There is a 14th century piscina in the north aisle indicating the position of an altar, possibly for the chantry dedicated to St. Mary The Virgin.  The west tower was mainly built in the 15th century but could have been commenced towards the end of the 14th century.

St. Mary's served both Market Lavington and Easterton until a church was built for the latter village in 1875.  In the latter part of the 17th century up until about 1718 the vicar was Thomas Tanner whose son, also Thomas, became the Bishop of St. Asaph.  In 1676 there were estimated to be 476 parishioners worshipping at the church from the combined villages.  The younger Thomas Tanner made a bequeath to provide a sermon each year on the 25th January to celebrate St. Paul's Day; this annual sermon first took place in 1735 and is still part of the church calendar today.

Large congregations still took part in church services well into 19th century and when the church took its census in 1851, 300 people were at morning service and 250 in the evening.  The first major restoration of the church took place in 1864 under the watchful eye of Ewan Christian, the architect in charge of the works.  The nave and part of the aisle walls were rebuilt, buttresses were added to the south aisle and those of the chancel were rebuilt. The window tracery was renewed at this time and the chancel arch rebuilt.  In 1910 the organ chamber and choir vestry were added to the south of the chancel whilst the chancel itself went under restoration which included the rebuilding of the east wall.  There were 6 bells by 1783, recast in 1876.

Interesting Entries in the Parish Registers 1714-1782

Parish Register Transcripts



Parish Registers held at WSHC

Baptisms 1673-1975
Marriages 1673-1988
Burials 1673-2001


Parish History

The parish has been inhabited for at least 4000 years. The various types of soil in the area, chalk downland, clay and sand, together with an abundant water supply - made it an ideal  place for settlement. The parish is about five miles long and a mile wide; much of this area is on Salisbury Plain, a military training area.

Market Lavington was referred to as "Laventone" in the Doomsday Book.  The name of the parish has changed several times over the years - Chepyng Lavington, Steeple Lavington and East Lavington amongst them.

In 1254 Richard Rochelle was granted a charter to hold a market in Lavington. No regular markets have been held for more than 100 years now.

Civil Registration

1837 - Present Devizes Registration District


Buildings and Land

Read about the Market Lavington Museum here

Notice of Intended Construction of the Wilts & Berks Canal 1793 Lunatic Asylum 1818 Abolition of Turnpike Gates Celebrations 1825
Owners of Land 1873    


Public Houses

Sale of the George & Kings Arms Inns 1765


Crime and Legal Matters

Alcohol Related Crime

The Drink Again 1874


Bastardy Examinations 1839-1879

Capital Punishment

Execution of Richard Potter 1789 


Wilts Quarter Sessions Business Meeting 1884

Crime Reports

1700-1799          1800-1849

Employment Crime

Leaving Service 1874

Prisons and Prisoners

Convicts sent to Prison Hulks 1823-1842


Manslaughter Charge 1869

Uncategorised Crime Items

Elopement of the British Lion Queen 1847



Gillmans 1913               Gillmans 1914               Kellys 1915




Emigration and Migration

Strays Index          Brothers & Draper Connection to Pennsylvania 1681          Emigration Home Contact Requested 1800 - Present


Employment and Business


Agriculture Report 1847


Apprentice records published here may not necessarily mean that the apprentice was from the parish but was apprenticed to a master within the parish.

William Bell 1721

Wiltshire Society Apprentices

Lawrence S. Plank 1922           George Smith 1886-1889


British Postal Service Appointments 1737-1969     

Markets and Fairs              

St. Anne's Hill Fair 1823                


General Medical Council Registration 1859-1959


Miscellaneous Documents


Non Conformity and Other Places of Worship


People and Parish Notables

People Gallery


Mrs. Hay's Accidet 1855          Accidental Shooting 1859

Census Returns Transcripts

1851          1861          1871          1881

Elections, Polls and Voters Lists

Council Eections

County Council Election Notice 1925

Parliamentary Elections

Poll of Freeholders 1772          Poll Book 1818          Voters List 1832           Voters Lists Revisions 1843

MP Nominations

MP Nominations 2015

Family Notices

1700-1799                 1800-1849                 1850-1899                 1900-1949

Funeral Reports

Joseph & Mary Topp Funeral Report 1938


Inquest Reports 1800-1899

Personal Research Items

Topp Research

If anyone has any information about the Topp family of Market Lavington would they please contact Teresa Lewis (Administrator).  The main subject of this query is Sydney Thomas Topp born about 1914.  Various sources name different mothers and fathers.  We know about his marriage at Worton in 1939 and his death if 1945.  We can find no trace of him prior to his marriage apart from the mention of him in the Funeral report above of Mary and Joseph Topp.

Tuck Research

Tuck Family Research Burial Extracts - This item was donated by Ken Tuck and contains entries that may or may not relate to the Tuck family however they have been published as such.  Many refer to Quaker burials found across the county


Poor Law, Charity and the Workhouse       

Poor Law Union Bread & Flour Contract 1838



Probate Notices 1850-1899               National Probate Index 1858-1966               Estate Values 1900-1949

Inquisitions Post Mortem of Land Held

John Walraund 1309                Joan Noyes 1623

Parishioners Wills

Jane Legg Proved 1817


War, Conflict and Military Matters

Servicemen and Women

Chelsea Pensioners 1808-1828                 Casualties Reported at the Battle of Sobraon 1846                    Servicemen & Families with the 1st Wilts. Regt. in South Africa 1911

Shooting Competitions

Rifle Competiition 1866               


Casualty Biographies of WWII

War Memorials

Diocese of Salisbury Memorial Book 1914-1918               



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