The history of Clophill, Bedfordshire, UK
Including historical descriptions, maps and statistical analysis.

107 Years Ago

To give an impression of what life was like in Clophill 107 years ago sources from the year 1911 have been transcribed and interpreted.


Who lived where a 107 years ago?

If your house is over one hundred years old it might be possible to discover who lived there and what they did.

The Reading Room

This was a gathering place for the young men of the village where they could play billiards. Whilst its use by the 'lads' was supported by the current rector and Lord Lucas (of Wrest Park), a previous rector, Gustavus Bosanquet, said that the 'lads' shouldn't be there as it was church property and was a school.

The Parish Rooms

The 'Parish Rooms' was a thatched building opposite the church and the social centre of the village.

The Church Path


Mr Edward Crouch

Mr Crouch was 88 years old and had spent his whole life actively serving the Church and the village.

Rev Meyer

Horace Rollo Meyer was rector from 1900 to 1910.

Rev Matthews

Cecil Lloyd Matthews was rector from 1911 to 1919 and, judging by the size of his congregations, was very popular.

Parish Council

The minutes show that 130 men and women (out of a total population of 916) received 4s (20p), clothing tickets and coal from the charities.

The state of footpaths and the path to the old church was discussed many times as was the cleaning out of the main stream of the river.

The Council were split on the desirability of requesting a Sunday postal delivery.



Two 'pretty' weddings are reported along with the rector's wedding. At another wedding the cleryman did not turn up!

St Mary's Church

A new rector is found and instituted. He proves very popular and encourages the menfolk to attend church.


Church Mission Society

The Church Mission Society, also known as the Church Missionary Society, was (and still is) a group of evangelistic societies working with the Anglican Communion and Protestant Christians around the world.

British and Foreign Bible Society

The British and Foreign Bible Society, often known in England and Wales as simply Bible Society, was (and still is) a non-denominational Christian Bible society with charity status whose purpose is to make the Bible available throughout the world.

Girl's Friendly Society

Established by a group of Anglicans in England in 1875 to address, through Christian values, the problems of working-class out-of-wedlock pregnancies, as well as other problems of working class girls, it soon grew into a support organization for unmarried girls and young women who wished to better themselves.


Primitive Methodist Chapel

They managed to pick a rainy day for their annual camp meeting in one of the hottest, driest years on record!

Wesleyan Chapel

A festival was held in a meadow and sports and games were indulged in until after dark.


The gardening prizes were awarded. Twelve boys each received a Cox's Orange Pippin apple tree. A tooth-cleaning competition was started with prizes for the children who took the greatest care of their teeth.


George Dunham was summoned for using obscene language to the annoyance of certain persons a Clophill.


Miss Florence Gudgin went to hospital for an X-ray after a bicycling accident but young Henry Upton was sent home after crushing his toes in a chaff-cutting machine.



The club plan to have a busy season of matches against neighbouring villages.


The Rector scores a goal.


A concert shows that there was a lot of talent in the village.


The Coronation

The Coronation of King George V & Queen Mary took place on 22 June 1911 and was celebrated by the village.

Empire Day

The first 'Empire Day' took place on 24th May 1902, the Queen Victoria's birthday (though she had died the previous year.) In 1958 Empire Day was renamed Commonwealth Day.


The previous year (1910) had been very wet but 1911 was a drought year with very high temperatures.


The agricultural depression continued, reflected here in low land prices.