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Middle Claydon

"This parish has an area of nearly 2640 acres, of which more than half is arable land, the remainder being divided between meadow and woodland. The height of the land above the ordnance datum varies from 287 ft. to a maximum height of about 410 ft. at Runt's Wood in the south-east of the parish. The ancient Three Points Lane, running north-west to north of Runt's Wood, is part of the eastern boundary of the parish, and Claydon Brook bounds it on the north-west. The soil is clay loam with beds of sand and gravel; the subsoil is clay. The chief feature of this parish is Claydon Park. Centrally situated, it covers over 300 acres, including three fine pieces of water. In it stands Claydon House, the seat of Sir Harry Calvert Williams Verney, bart., who owns the whole of the parish except the Glebe and a small portion belonging to the railway."
[© copyright of the editors of The Victoria Histories of the Counties of England]

Map showing the location of the parish


Bibliography Church History Names, Geographical
Cemeteries Church Records Photographs
Census History & Descriptions

Bibliography

The following reference sources have been used in the construction of this page, and may be referred to for further detail. Most if not all of these volumes are available in the Reference section of the County Library in Aylesbury.

"Buckinghamshire Contributions for Ireland 1642", Wilson J., 1983.
"Buckinghamshire Returns of the Census of Religious Worship 1851", Legg E. ed., 1991, ISBN 0 901198 27 7.
"Dictionary of English Place-Names", A.D. Mills, Oxford University Press, 1997, ISBN 0 19 28131 3
"Magna Britannia: Buckinghamshire", Lysons S. and Lysons D., 1806.
"The Place-Names of Buckinghamshire", Mawer A. and Stenton F.M., 1925.
"The Victoria History of the Counties of England: Buckinghamshire", Page W. ed., 1905-1928
"War Memorials and War Graves: North Central Bucks, Volume 4", Peter Quick.

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Cemeteries

The following Monumental Inscriptions are available as publications or as part of a Society library:

* = material held in a Society library is generally available for loan to all members either via post, or by collection at a meeting

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Census

In 1642 there were 51 people named in the tax returns for contributions for Ireland. Between them they were assessed at £3.9.3 of which sum John Aris contributed £1.0.0

In 1798 the Posse Comitatus listed 33 men between the ages of 16 and 60 in Middle Claydon.

In the earliest government census of 1801, there were 93 [see note *** below] inhabitants in 24 families living in 24 houses recorded in Middle Claydon.

Census Year Population of Middle Claydon
1801* 103
1811* 129
1821* 160
1831* 136
1841 127
1851 165
1861 146
1871 139
1881 225
1891 227
1901 231

* = No names were recorded in census documents from 1801 to 1831.
** = Census documents from 1911 to 2001 are only available in summary form. Names are witheld under the 100 year rule.
***= The value from Magna Britannia (93) differs from that in the Victoria County History (103)

Microfilm copies of all census enumerators' notebooks for 1841 to 1891 are held at the Local Studies Libraries at Aylesbury and Milton Keynes, as well as centrally at the PRO. A table of 19th century census headcount by parish is printed in the VCH of Bucks, Vol.2, pp 96-101.

Availability of census transcripts and indexes.

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Church History

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Church Records

The original copies of the parish registers for All Saints, Middle Claydon have been deposited in the Buckinghamshire Record Office in Aylesbury, and they hold the following years:

Event Dates covered
Christenings 1539 - 1812
Marriages 1538 - 1835
Burials 1539 - 1812

Copies or indexes to the parish registers are available from societies as follows:

Event
Society Library*
Dates covered
Society
Marriages
1538 - 1837
Buckinghamshire Genealogical Society

* = material held in a Society library is generally available for loan to all members either via post, or by collection at a meeting

An ecclesiastical census was carried out throughout England on 30 March 1851 to record the attendance at all places of worship. These returns are in the Buckinghamshire Record Office and have been published by the Buckinghamshire Record Society (vol 27). The returns for Middle Claydon showed the following numbers:

Church Attendance
Middle Claydon, All Saints 59 - Afternoon General Congregation
59 - Afternoon Total

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History & Descriptions

Middle Claydon was described in 1806 in "Magna Britannia" as follows:

MIDDLE-CLAYDON, in the hundred of Ashendon and deanery of Waddesdon, lies nearly two miles from East-Claydon, and about four miles south-west of Winslow. The manor was held under the Peverells, soon after the Norman conquest, by the family of Gresley, from whom it passed by female heirs to the Cantilupes and Zouches. Sir John Brockley, who was Lord Mayor of London in 1433, bought it of the Zouches: in 1458 it was sold by him or his representatives to Sir Ralph Verney, whose descendant of the same name was created a baronet in 1661. Sir Ralph's son was, in 1703, created an Irish viscount, by the title of Fermanagh, and, in 1742, his grandson was created Earl Verney. These titles became extinct in 1791, by the death of the second earl, whose niece, Mary Verney, was the next year created Basoness Fermanagh, and is the present proprietor of this manor.

Either Sir Ralph Verney who purchased Middle-Claydon, or his son Sir John, built a capital mansion there in the reign of Henry VII. which has ever since been the chief seat of the family, but having undergone many alterations, retains no vestige of its ancient form. The more modern part was fitted up in a very magnificent manner, and furnished, with great expence, by the late Earl Verney. The furniture was sold after his death, the state rooms not being made use of by the present owner, who resides during the greater part of the year at a villa in Kent. The saloon is forty-eight feet eight inches by thirty-two feet eight inches, and twenty-four feet three inches in height. The dining-room and drawing room are of the same length and height, but in width only twenty-seven feet six inches; these rooms still contain a few portraits, among which is a fine picture of Sir Edmund Verney, by Vandyke. The grand stair-case is inlaid with various wood, and the iron railing is very richly wrought.

In the parish church are several memorials of the Verney family, the most remarkable is the monument of Sir Edmund Verney above-mentioned, who was standard-bearer to King Charles I. and fell at the battle of Edgehill in 1642: it is ornamented with busts of himself, his son, Sir Ralph Verney, and their wives.. In the chancel, which was built by the Gyfford family in 1519, is a tomb, with brasses , of Richard Gyfford, who died in 1542, and his wife ------. Lady fermanagh is patroness of the rectory.

Sir Ralph Verney, the first baronet, who died in 1696, built an alms-house for six poor persons: it has no endowment.

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Names, Geographical

The name Claydon derives from the old english clægig + dun and means 'clayey hill'. The affix of 'Middle' is descriptive of its position between East, Botolph and Steeple Claydon.

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Photographs

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