Aston Flamville in Leicestershire

Aston Flamville in Leicestershire is a place that has not been sacrificed to 'progress', and still remains a pleasantly small community.

St.Peter's Church Aston Flamville
St.Peter's Church at Aston Flamville

Aston Flamville is a village in Leicestershire, England. It is situated near Hinckley, and has a population of 150 and consequently has a parish meeting rather than a parish council.

The village name derives from two words, firstly an old English word, Aston which means Eastern farmstead or settlement and Flamville is the family name of a Norman nobleman called Robert de Flamville.

1043 The estate belonged to Leofric who was the Lord of Mercia. Leofric and his famous wife Godiva founded a monastery at Coventry and as part of an endowment gave Aston, Burbage and Sketchley to help support the monks.

1100 Robert de Flamville (one of William the Conquerer's noblemen) had ownership of the manor of Aston, the village now became known as Aston Flamville.

The Church of St. Peters was built.

1430 Richard Turville married the heiress of Sir William Flamville and thus obtained Aston Flamville. For the next 350 years the powerful Turville family lived in the village, two of them holding the post of High Sheriff of Leicester.

1500s The Manor House was built, which is a pleasant two-storeyed building. Many of the manor's rooms are panelled and one room still has priest holes behind the wood, the cellar door has bolts on the inside as well as a peep-hole. Although it has not been located there is thought to be a tunnel leading to the church from the cellar.

1646 During the Civil War, Aston Flamville was occasionally visited by troops from the parliamentary garrisons in north Warwickshire. Among a list of claims for losses submitted to the county committee were:

1746 Aston Flamville, the seat of the younger branch was alienated by Carrington Turvile who had lost his only son some years before. Carrington desired to be buried by his side in the old church of the English nuns at Brussels, when he himself died in 1749.

Aston Flamville has been called the "cradle of the renascence of the Dominican English Province" as, from 1746, Father Clarkson made monthly visits to Aston and it was from here that the Roman Catholic Church gained a foothold in Leicestershire.

1759 Father Matthew Thomas Norton was a Dominican priest who travelled in secret from an English seminary in France and went on to serve the Roman Catholic community of Hinckley, Leicester and Coventry. Father Norton was encouraged to come by the Turville family in Aston Flamville, who had secretly harboured a priest for a number of years and had Holy Mass in the cellar of the Manor House.

When Father Norton died his will could not be found, the decision was taken to bury him in the Anglican church of St Peter’s, at Aston Flamville.

The estate and manor was sold to the Cradocks, and it was Joseph Cradock who was responsible for the planting of the many fine old trees still to be seen around the area.

1873 The nave and tower of St. Peters Church were entirely rebuilt, to the designs of William Smith at the charge of Sir J.W.C. Hartopp.

1911 The rector of St. Peters Church placed a clock in the tower to the memory of King Edward VII.

9th October 1959 Hinckley Catholics were seeking Home Office permission to have the remains of Father Norton transferred from Aston Flamville Churchyard to the new Roman Catholic Church that was nearing completion in Leicester Road, Hinckley. Father Norton held his first religious service in Hinckley in 1765

16th September 1971 The Right Reverend Ronald Raph ‘the Bishop of Leicester’ made the order of substituting the church of St. Catherine at Burbage as the parish church of the parish of Aston Flamville, with Burbage in the diocese of Leicester and for altering the name of that benefice and parish. St. Peters Church became a chapel of ease to Burbage.

1976 The former peace of the village is disturbed by the new M69 motorway which cuts across the nearby fields. According to some residents, when the wind is blowing in the wrong direction the noise can be terrible.

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