Origin: Forest frequented by fallow deer

Domesday: The King held it. Inland for 4 ploughs, outside the demesne 4 ploughs. Total people 6 bordars, 6 villans with a reeve.

A lost village. In 1377 there were 90 villagers over 14. By 1524 only 7 taxpayers remained (including 2 Knightleys who owned the land and had been active in depopulating it). The lost inhabitants had been replaced by 2500 sheep.

Today there is no great evidence of the original village but the sheep (or their descendants!) are still in evidence. The present “village” consists of the Hall (Knightley’s home), which is now a hotel, a ruined Dower House, a rather imposing but run down building adjacent to the Hall and the church.


The church stands impressively in what appears to be a deer park looking out over the estate and the wood carving inside on the pews is superb.


The Dower House is, I believe, the Lodge referred to by William Montgomery in his 1747 will. The Montgomeries were mainly active in the parish from 1725 to 1790, and, as graziers, almost certainly benefited from the depopulation of the village.


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If you have any information on Fawsley or the Montgomery family I would be pleased to hear from you.



For a description of the village in the late 1800s a Whelans Directory of 1874 is attached.