The history of Clophill, Bedfordshire, UK
Including historical descriptions, maps and statistical analysis.
The Domesday Book is a great land survey from 1086, commissioned by William the Conqueror to assess the extent of the land and resources being owned in England at the time, and the extent of the taxes he could raise.
Royal commissioners were sent out around England to collect and record the information from thousands of settlements.
Nigel himself holds Clophill. It is assessed at 5 hides. There is land for 3 ploughs. In demesne [are] 3 hides, and there are 2 ploughs; and 5 villans have 6 ploughs. There are 5 bordars and 1 slaves, meadow for 4 ploughs, [and] woodland for 200 pigs and [rendering] 12d.
It is worth 60s; when received. 30s; TRE £8. 2 thegns, men of Earl Tosti, held this manor. Of these 5 hides Nigel himself claims 1 virgates which his predecessor held TRE. Nigel himself was seised of it after he came into [possession of] the honour, but Ralph Taillebois disseised him.
If your house is over one hundred years old it might be possible to discover who lived there and what they did.
Another interactive map of the village.
A selection of old maps of Bedfordshire showing Clophill
For centuries bricks and tiles were made to the north of Clophill.
The Bedford Gaol Register records the offences and punishments of its inmates over the period 1801-1901. The punishments seem very severe by today's standards.