7,904 (2011 Census. Ward) (for Limbury ward, which also includes part of Runfold, and does not include parts of Limbury in Saints ward
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Limbury is a suburb of Luton, and was formerly a village in Bedfordshire before Luton expanded around it. The area is roughly bounded by Bramingham Road to the north, Marsh Road to the south, Bramingham Road to the west, and Catsbrook Road, Runfold Avenue, Grosvenor Road, Bancroft Road and Blundell Road to the east.
A place called Lygeanburgh near Waulud’s Bank (which is in nearby Leagrave) was one of four settlements mentioned in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle captured by Cuthwulf, (Prince of Wessex) in 571. Lygeanburgh and Limbury were almost certainly the same place, but so far there has been no excavated evidence to link them directly. Lygeanburgh meant a fortified place on the river Lea.
The Icknield Way, a Roman road passes through Limbury. Local road names give away its location, the road is called as 'Icknield Road' as it enters Limbury from Leagrave, then eventually the road continues on as Icknield Way.
The villages of Limbury and Leagrave were formed into the ecclesiastical parish of Holy Trinity, Biscot, in 1866. Then in 1896, under the provisions of the Local Government Act 1894, they became separate civil parishes, Limbury and Biscot becoming the parish of Limbury-cum-Biscot.
At the end of the nineteenth century, Limbury was a small hamlet approximately two miles from Luton, near Leagrave village, at that time it consisted of just a few cottages and just two farms.
Moated houses still existed in around Limbury at the beginning of the 20th century, the Moat House (which was originally just outside Limbury, and is now part of the neighbouring suburb of Saints) is the only one remaining (now a pub/restaurant), the building is reputed to be the oldest secular building in South Bedfordshire. During 2007 the Moat House had the roof rethatched.
In the early part of the 20th century, Luton was rapidly changing from a hat manufacturing town to one relying mainly on engineering. New factories were being built in the town as well as the existing ones expanding, mainly in the motor industry (Vauxhall moved to Luton in 1905). This meant more workers were needed, many of whom were housed in Limbury. Hedges and the rural landscape fast disappeared in Limbury as new housing developments replaced them.
With the increased number of workers a new Baptist Church was built in 1906. The church was built by Mr Arthur Cole who had signed a contract the previous August 1905 with the church that included the line, 'I...... agree to build a chapel (at Limbury)......and (it) shall be finished in every particular so that the opening services may be held on Good Friday, 1906.'
Further expansion of Limbury came in the 1950s when it expanded north of the River Lea, building on fields known as “Limbury Mead”, a term which is still used locally to refer to north Limbury.
At the centre of the original village of Limbury is Limbury Baptist Church, and a small parade of shops on Neville Road, and The Black Swan pub on Black Swan Lane. On Gardenia Avenue is St. Joseph’s Roman Catholic Church, built in the 20th century to serve Limbury’s growing Irish Catholic population, as well as the neighbouring St. Joseph’s R.C. Primary School (until 2014 two separate schools, an infants and a juniors school). There are two other schools in the area, Norton Road Primary School and The Meads Primary School.
The main shopping area is now centred on Limbury Mead Square at the junction of Watermead Road and Calverton Road.
There are large open spaces in Limbury following the path of the River Lea.
Limbury is in the north of Luton, roughly 3 miles from the town centre. Neighbouring areas are Marsh Farm and Bramingham to the north, Saints to the south, Leagrave to the west, and Runfold to the east.
The River Lea runs west to east through the middle of the area. Limbury is fairly flat apart from a small gradient from the river up to the central Limbury.
Limbury is part of the larger Limbury ward, which also includes part of Runfold, as well as the south eastern tip over spilling into the Saints ward. The ward is represented by Cllr Amy Nicholls (Labour) and Cllr Robert Roche (Labour).
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Two weekly newspapers cover Limbury, although they are not specific to the area.
They are the:
- Luton Borough Council, Population Estimates and Forecasts Archived 21 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine, estimate for Limbury ward in 2007. The count in the 2001 Census was 7,675.
- "Luton Ward population 2011". Naeighbourhood Statistics. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 10 November 2016. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
- "Limbury in Saxon Chronicles". 1722.
- Moat House, Limbury
- 23 August edition of the Herald & Post Newspaper (Luton)
- Baptist Church history[permanent dead link]
- "List of Luton Parks".