Preston Capes
Preston Capes

Origin: The tun of the priests held by Hugh de Capes in 1255

Domesday: Alvred held 1 ˝ virgates of land. Land for one plough. It was waste. Nigel held 1 hide and ˝ virgate. Land for 3 ploughs. In demesne 2 ploughs, 2 slaves, a priest with 3 villans and a plough. 1 acre of woodland.


Little Preston stands on the road from Maidford to Preston Capes. The houses are almost entirely modern(ised) and I was unable to sort out which was the one occupied by William Montgomery in the early 1800s.


Further along the road from Maidford, and just off it, is Preston Capes. The village descends down a hill with grassy banks (with spring flowers when I was there) on either side and has a real picture postcard feel.


The church is at the edge of the village from where the land again falls sharply away with a lovely view over the valley. Well kept, the church somehow feels rather misproportioned with a tower too tall for the rest.


Inside the paint around the altar is startling (the sort of salmon pink/orange you might see in “Changing Rooms”), but this does not distract from the rest of the interior. The stained glass is a mixture of conventional “pictures”, a sort of harlequin chequer board in blue, red and yellow which may sound peculiar but I thought most attractive and a really wonderful window over the altar. This was not stained glass but rather clear glass etched with pictures. Saints, peacocks, trees, birds, sheep and St George are all there. The only place I think I have seen anything similar is the glass entrance at Coventry Cathedral (and I preferred the Preston Capes version!). All in all Preston Capes (and it’s church) is one of the most attractive places I have visited.



My interest centres on:

Samuel Bird who brought up his family in Everdon but died in Preston Capes in1730. He was referred to as a “gentleman” leaving several hundred pounds in his will so presumably lived in one of the larger houses.


William Wait who was born in Preston Capes in1820 and although referred to as a farmer at his marriage in 1842 was subsequently referred to as an agricultural labourer and moved to Whilton.


William Montgomery, who was christened in Fawsley in 1765, lived in Preston Capes around 1805 and ended up farming at White Hall at Heyford where he died in 1830.

Any information on these families would be appreciated:



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