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The Turvey Website The history and families of Turvey in Bedfordshire, England

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Turvey is a village, parish and a station on the Bedford and Northampton branch of the Midland railway, 7 miles north-west from Bedford, 4 east from Olney, and 9 north-east from Newport Pagnell, on the borders of Buckinghamshire, from which it is separated by the river Ouse, in the hundred of Willey, union and county court district of Bedford, rural deanery of Clapham, archdeaconry of Bedford, and diocese of Ely. The streets and principal dwellings are lighted with gas. The church of All Saints is a handsome stone structure, consisting of chancel, nave and aisles with tower and has been much enlarged and beautified; it contains a very fine organ, which cost £1,600, the expense of which, as well as of the enlargement of the church, was entirely borne by Charles Longuet Higgins, esq.; the chancel windows are stained; there are several fine monuments to members of the Mordaunt family, afterwards Earls of Peterborough. The register dates from the year 1629. The living is a rectory, in the gift of William Francis Higgins, esq., yearly value £383, with residence, and is held by the Rev. George Frederick Woodhouse Munby, M.A., of Trinity College, Cambridge. Here are National and Infant schools, with residences, and a reading room, a working men’s room, and museum. The house and cottages are nearly all built of native stone, and a re unusually capacious and neat. The Three Fishes inn is one of the old inns, with projecting gables, and is dated 1624. A great flood, on September 26th. 1797, rose about four feet above the roadway, near the “Three Fishes.” There are Wesleyan and Independent chapels; also charities, value £75 yearly, for distribution. There is also the Bedfordshire Reformatory, under Government inspection, at which about fifty boys can be maintained and instructed in agricultural pursuits. Large quantities of pillow thread lace are made here, and shoe making is carried on. The approach to Turvey from Bedford is by an avenue of trees, nearly a mile in length; at the further extremity of the village is a bridge over the Ouse, with eight arches, facing which, in the water, is a statue, representing Jonah and the fish; the other entrances to the village are also picturesquely interesting. Turvey House and Turvey Cottage are the property of W. F. Higgins, esq., J.P., the latter at present the residence of Robert Gillespie, esq. Turvey Abbey is the seat of C. L. Higgins, esq., J.P.; it is situated in an extensively and finely wooded park. Piets Hill, a mile and a half east of Turvey, the seat of Lieut.-Col. W. B. Higgins, J.P., is in a park. Turvey House, occupied by William Francis Higgins, esq., J.P., is situated in a pleasant park, which has been recently much enlarged and extends to the Ouse. The principal landowners are W. F. Higgins, esq., C. L. Higgins, esq., who is lord of the manor, and Lieut.-Col. W. B. Higgins. The soil is mixed gravel and strong clay; subsoil, clay, gravel, and rock. The land is chiefly arable. The area is 3,944 acres; rateable value. £6,000; the population in 1871 was 1,117, which includes 96 persons temporarily in the parish.

Parish Clerk, Richard Wooding.


Savings Bank & Government Annuity & Insurance Office - Gillaway Harley, postmaster.

Letters received from Bedford at 8 am & 12 pm; dispatched at 4.45 pm; Sundays at 3.25 pm

INSURANCE AGENT - Whittington Life, G. Taylor

Reading Room, George Taylor, Librarian


National, George Taylor, master; James Gardner, pupil teacher

Infant, Miss A. Hulatt, mistress; Mary Elizabeth Foskett, pupil teacher

Reformatory, John Jones, superintendent


Midland railway, to all parts; (vacant), station master

Thomas Bailey, to & from Bedford, Monday, Wednesday & Saturday; to & from Olney, Thursday

Field passes through from Olney to Bedford, Thursday

This is a transcription of the listing of the 1877 Post Office Directory entry for Turvey.  Many thanks to Mr Brian Comley for kindly sending me this information.

1877 Post Office Directory

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