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Places > Melchbourne

13th Century: The church was partially rebuilt and remodelled in the classical style in 1779 but the shell of the 13th century chancel survives largely intact and the outer wall of the north aisle is also of medieval date.

1264: License granted to hold a fair on the Feast of St. Mary Magdalen to the Knights Hospitallers, a military and religious order formed to care and protect pilgrims visiting The Holy Land, who held land in Melchbourne and established a Preceptory there.

c1610: Melchbourne Park built for Lord St.John as a replacement for the out-of-date Bletsoe Castle. The house was substantial having 33 hearths in 1671. The present house was built on the remains of the first one in 1741.

1857: Melchbourne School built.

1915: Methodist Chapel built.

1919: Cross of Portland Stone erected in churchyard as a First World War Memorial.

1933: By The South Bedfordshire Order part of the parish was transferred to the parish of Shefford.

1944: During the war Melchbourne Park was an Eighth Air Force Ordnance Depot. On Friday afternoon, 21st July 1944, Glenn Miller and the American Band of the Supreme Allied Command played a concert for 750 officers and enlisted men. The house is now divided into separate dwellings.

1962: Village shop closed and the new village hall opened replacing the old one which was destroyed by fire in 1960.

Page last updated: 3rd February 2014