14th Century: The present Church dates from the early part of the 14th century, the south porch being a slightly later addition and the upper part of the tower being early 15th century work. There was a former church on the site by the mid 12th century and the list of incumbents goes back to 1258 when the vicar was John of Dunstable.
1604: Although the plague was not mentioned, there was probably a visitation as 48 people died during the year; four times the average.
1623: Such was the reputation of Wootton bricks that the Rector of Houghton Conquest instructed that his grave be made with them.
1655: An early reference to brick making at Wootton refers to a tithe kiln at Wood End.
1674:The Hearth Tax returns show Wootton House was taxed at 9 hearths, a relatively modest sum although the property was by far the largest in the village; the small workhouse situated in Church Road was listed as having six hearths.
1685:Floor slab memorial placed in the church to Lieutenant Philip Monoux who was killed in the service of James 11 fighting in the Monmouth Rebellion.
1715: From 1715 until his death in 1743 Thomas Russell cast bells at his Wootton bell foundry. After his death the foundry closed for a number of years.
1768: The bell foundry was re-opened by Willam Emmerton who cast his first bell in 1768 and continued to cast bells until his death in 1790, although clock making was his main means of livelihood.
1830: The Black Horse public house first licensed.
1836: Baptist Church built at a cost of 400, Wootton Enclosure Act passed, The Fox and Duck Public House built.
1860: Wootton's first school opened.
1863: Methodist Church opened.
1877: Wootton Board School opened, the cost of the building was 1,442.
1880: Albert John Foster appointed as Vicar of Wootton 1880-1918, writer of local historical romances including "Ampthill Towers" (1894) and "The Robber Baron of Bedford Castle" (1893).
1880: First reference to a cricket match, a friendly against a team from Kempston.
1890: Wootton Blue Cross Football Club formed, in the early days matches were played behind The Cock Inn.
1897: The church organ was rebuilt and enlarged to commemorate Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee.
1899: Brickworks of B.J. Forder & Sons opened, covering an area of 5 acres.
1890: Forder formed his firm into a limited liability company with Halley Stewart as Chairman. Stewart would later be knighted and have the village of Stewartby named after him.
1919: Wootton's Women's Institute formed in August.
1933: Henry Timmings opened his manufacture and repair of tennis racquets, the business closed in 1960.
1937: The village of Stewartby, originally part of the parish of Wootton Pillinge, became a separate civil parish.
1955: Old Tithe Barn demolished.
1962:The present Lower School opened.
1966: Wootton Post Office closes.
1967: Wootton Church Hall opened.
1971:The parish lock-up, which stood to the right of the main church gate, was demolished.
1975: Wootton Upper School opened.
1976: New Group Headquarters of the Woburn Group of Scouts, Cubs, Guides and Brownies officially opened on the 14th May.
1977: Wootton Old School closed down.
1983: New Village Hall completed at a cost of 60,000 to replace the old Memorial Hall.
- Newspaper Cuttings Collection at Bedford Central Library
- A History of Wootton by A. Brittain and others, (2002)
- Brickmaking : a history and gazeteer by A. Cox, (1979)
- Bedfordshire Churches in the 19th Century Part 3 by C. Pickford (BHRS, Vol.79, 2000)
Page last updated: 4th February 2014