Hauxton History

Historic Hauxton

Hauxton, listed in the Domesday Book as ‘Hauochestun’ in 1086 with 27 households, shows evidence of Beaker, Bronze Age, Iron Age, and Roman presence. Small communities settled near the River Cam ford and erected a mill. Discoveries of swords, daggers, and human and horse bones imply a battle. A brooch dating to around 570 AD was found, coinciding with the murder of King Edmund of East Anglia by the Danes.

A small wooden church, dedicated to King Edmund, was built in the 10th century. In 1109, it was replaced by the church still standing today, one of the oldest in East Anglia. The font dates back to the 13th century. In the 15th century, the nave was lengthened, the tower was erected, and pews and a pulpit were added.

Pilgrims traveling to Walsingham would stop at Hauxton to rest and pray before crossing the river by the mill. Two side chapels, built around that time, were demolished in the 16th century. During the construction of a rood screen, a fresco of Thomas á Beckett was covered over, inadvertently saving it from destruction by Cromwell’s troops years later. After restoration in 1666, three bells were installed in the tower, where they remain today. The church fell into neglect in the early 19th century but was rediscovered during major renovations in 1860.

Presently, the Benefice of Harston, Hauxton, and Newton connects the churches in these neighbouring villages. A mill has likely existed on the current site since Roman times. Its peak was in the late 18th century when it also processed rapeseed for oil, and it traded in various goods at what was then called Mill End.

London to Cambridge coaches used to pass through Hauxton, where travellers could find two ale houses, The Ship and The Chequers. As late as 1800, it remained a toll road, with the turnpike and keeper’s cottage located near the bridge. An old milestone from 1729, bearing the Trinity Hall arms, still stands in the area. In 1851, a new mill was constructed after a fire, operating until 1974 under Turner & Son, making it the sole 19th-century watermill in Cambridgeshire. The village had a school dating back to the 1580s, with a small Dame school established in 1846, funded by local farmers and landowners. In 1870, the vicar opened a school for village children, with older students attending school in Harston after 1928 and later in Melbourn from 1959.

Pest Control Ltd. was established in 1939 by entomologists Sir Guy Marshall and Dr. Walter Ripper, operating from a disused garage near Hauxton mill. By 1945, the company chose Hauxton as its manufacturing center, experiencing significant growth from 1950. In 1954, Fisons took over the struggling firm, investing in new facilities and expanding its workforce. The site saw further development, but by 2004, Bayer CropScience closed it, leading to land remediation for housing and office development.

St. Edmund’s church houses the war memorial, recognized for its historic and architectural significance. Hauxton has undergone changes, including the closure of its general store, once owned by Peggy and Meyrick Arnold, commemorated with road names in the Hauxton Meadows development. Notable residents include author Michael Morpurgo, who lived in the village from 1969 to 1970.

Modern Hauxton

Today Hauxton has increased in size due to the completion of Hauxton Meadows, a residential development, and  Mill View – independent living apartments for the over 55s with access to care and support services.

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Hauxton Meadows