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Northill church.jpg
Church of St Mary the Virgin
Northill is located in Bedfordshire
Location within Bedfordshire
Population2,288 (2001)
2,270 (2011 Census)[1]
OS grid referenceTL149465
Civil parish
  • Northill
Unitary authority
Ceremonial county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Postcode districtSG18
Dialling code01767
FireBedfordshire and Luton
AmbulanceEast of England
EU ParliamentEast of England
UK Parliament
List of places
52°06′20″N 0°19′23″W / 52.10569°N 0.32302°W / 52.10569; -0.32302Coordinates: 52°06′20″N 0°19′23″W / 52.10569°N 0.32302°W / 52.10569; -0.32302

Northill is a village and civil parish in the county of Bedfordshire, England. It falls under the Northill and Blunham ward in the Central Bedfordshire local authority. In 2001 Northill had a population of about 900 people.[citation needed] The village is also the administrative centre of the civil parish of Northill, which in 2001 had a population of 2,288,[2] reducing to 2,270 at the 2011 Census.[1] The parish includes the hamlets of Budna, Lower and Upper Caldecote, Hatch, Ickwell and Thorncote Green.

The village is located about 4 miles to the west north west of Biggleswade[3] and is centred on a T-junction, which sees the Ickwell Road meet the Bedford Road.


Topographically, Northill is situated on a slightly elevated ridge that run from north to south, and the surrounding terrain comprises parkland and woodland. It has a school, pub and church.


Part of the ancient hundred of Wixamtree, the village was originally known as North Givell,[4] meaning the northern part of territory of the River Ivel.

A similar version of this place-name is first evidenced in the Domesday Book of 1086 which reads: Nortigble/Nortgiue(le): Pirot and Ralph from Eudo FitzHubert, Walter from Hugh de Beauchamp; William Speke. 1 1/2 mills.

A variation of this spelling is "North Yevell" as seen in a 1440s legal record.[5]

The core of the village's buildings date back to the 14th century.[6] To this day many examples of thatched roofing exist around Northill.

Among the buildings stemming from the 14th century is the village's Anglican Church of St Mary, which is built of ironstone and has been extensively restored over the subsequent centuries. The church itself contains fine examples of 17th-century painted glass.

Sir Humphrey Winch, Lord Chief Justice of Ireland, was born here in 1555.

Northill was the baptismal place, and possibly the birthplace, of the famous clockmaker Thomas Tompion, who built the famous Pump Room Clock in 1709 that has since seen active service in the city of Bath. Thomas Tompion's father was the village blacksmith, whose forge can still be seen on the Green at Ickwell.

Events and amenities[edit]

Aside from residential homes, Northill features an Anglican church, and a public house called The Crown located next door to the church. The village features no stores or shops, and no prominent commercial entities.

The village of Northill is known locally for being the starting place of the popular Ickwell May Day celebration that sees local floats and residents travel the mile or so down the Ickwell Road to the neighbouring village of Ickwell. There the celebrations conclude on the village green. The Northill/Ickwell May Day celebration has been in operation since at least circa 1565.


  1. ^ a b "Civil Parish population 2011". Neighbourhood Statistics. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 6 November 2016.
  2. ^ "Census 2001: Parish Headcounts: Mid Bedfordshire". Office for National Statistics. Archived from the original on 26 May 2013. Retrieved 29 October 2010.
  3. ^ "Map of Northill, Bedfordshire, United Kingdom". Retrieved 23 September 2006.
  4. ^ "Northill Tourist Information". Retrieved 23 September 2006.
  5. ^ Plea Roll, Court of Common Pleas; Term 1. CP 40 / 717, National Archives;
  6. ^ "Northill". Retrieved 23 September 2006.

External links[edit]

Media related to Northill at Wikimedia Commons