St Martin's Church, Preston
|Population||420 (2011 Census)|
|OS grid reference|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|Ambulance||East of England|
The village grew up around the Templar holdings at Temple Dinsley. The first church was mentioned in 1252, when six acres (24,000 m2) of land was given to nuns from Elstow, Bedfordshire. Temple Dinsley passed on to the Knights Hospitaller after the dissolution of the Templars. When the Hospitallers were in turn dissolved in 1542, the manor went to Sir Ralph Sadleir. The current house at Temple Dinsley dates from 1714, and became Princess Helena College in 1935. The college closed in 2021.
Prior to 1894, Preston and neighbouring Langley were part of the parish of Hitchin, together forming a long salient to the south of the town itself. Preston and Langley became separate civil parishes as a result of the Local Government Act 1894, with effect from the first parish meeting on 4 December 1894. Preston civil parish was then included in the Hitchin Rural District between 1894 and 1974, when it became part of North Hertfordshire. The parish of Preston was enlarged in 1955 with the addition of territory from the neighbouring parishes of St Ippolyts and King's Walden.
- "Preston Parish". NOMIS. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 2 November 2021.
- Historic England. "Princess Helena College, Temple Dinsley (1307766)". National Heritage List for England.
- "Historic School to close at end of academic year". The Comet. Archant. Retrieved 16 February 2022.
- Ordnance Survey Sheet 221, revised 1893
- Local Government Act 1894 (56 & 57 Vict. c. 73)
- "Preston Hamlet / Civil Parish". A Vision of Britain through Time. GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth. Retrieved 2 November 2021.
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