Gazetteers

A NOTE ON ADMINISTRATIVE BOUNDARIES

From 1837 to 1935, Wing fell into the Wing sub-district of the Leighton Buzzard registration district in the Bedfordshire registration county. In 1935 it transferred to the Aylesbury registration district in the Buckinghamshire registration county. These registration districts formed the groupings for civil registration of births, deaths and marriages, and the decennial census. The Wing sub-district also included Mentmore and Soulbury. Wing also gives its name to the Wing rural district at local government level. For more information including statistical analyses at sub-district, district or rural-district level, see A Vision of Britain Through Time.

GAZETTEER OF MARKETS AND FAIRS IN ENGLAND & WALES TO 1516

(available online)

WING 4881 2226 [OS National Grid reference]. Assessed value in the 1334 Lay Subsidy £122.63.

Market (granted by Letter Close) Fri; mercatum, granted 12 Aug 1218, by King Henry III to Henry son of Gerold. To be held at the manor. Mandate to the sheriff of Buckinghamshire to cause him to have it.

Market (granted by Charter) Thurs; granted 7 Sept 1255, by King Henry III to John de Warrenna. To be held at the manor.

Fair (Charter) vfm [vigil feast morrow], Michael (29 Sept); granted 7 Sept 1255, by King Henry III to John de Warrenna. To be held at the manor.

1738 MAGNA BRITANNIA

Wing in Cotslow Hundred, most remarkable for being the Barony of the Rt Hon. Charles, late E. of Caernarvon, Viscount Ascot, and Baron Dormer of Wing, who had a seat here. That Earldom became extinct in him, but the barony of Dormer of Wing yet subsists. Robert Dormer Esq. was first created Baron of it Anno 13 Jme I and his grandson and heir Robert was made Earl of Caernarvon, of which in its place. This family flourishes also in Oxfordshire and of them have been many men of note in this Kingdom, of whom those two brave gentlemen, Philip Dormer and his brother, who were killed at the Battels of Blenheim in Germany and Almanza in Spain were descended, as was Jane Dormer, married to Don Lorenzo de Figuroa, Duke of Feria in Spain, who was eldest daughter of Sir William Dormer Kt, father of the first Lord Dormer. Near this place is Ascot, which gives the Title of Viscount to the above-mentioned Earl.

1746 THE ENGLISH TRAVELLER

Wing in Cotslow Hundred, most remarkable for being the Barony of the Right Hon. Charles, late Earl of Caernarvon, Viscount Ascot, and Baron Dormer of Wing, who had a seat here.
Ascot, which gave the same Lord the Title of Viscount, is near it.

1751 ENGLAND’S GAZETTEER

Ascot Bucks, near Wing and Winslow, gives title of Visc. to the E. of Carnarvan. Seat of Sir W. Stanhope.

1769 A DESCRIPTION OF ENGLAND AND WALES

WING, or WENGE, is a village six miles north east of Aylesbury. At Ascot in this parish, there was a cell of Benedictine monks, which Maud the Empress, gave to the Abbey of St Nicholas, at Angiers, in France, but when Henry VII. dissolved the alien priories it was given to the monastery of St Albans in Hertfordshire. Wing gave the title of baron to the Dormers, earls of Caernarvon, and now to the lords Dormer. And Ascot gave the title of viscount to the same earls.

1789 BRITANNIA by William Camden

Here falls into the Ouse a little river which rises near Weng, the seat of the Dormers. Robert Dormer, esq., was first created baron Wing 13 James I. and his grandson and heir Robert was created viscount Ascot and earl of Caernarvon, and slain at the battle of Newbury 1643. Charles Dormer, earl of Caernarvon, his son, died in 1709, whereby the title of viscount and earl became extinct, but that of baron Dormer of Wing descended to a younger branch of the same family who now enjoy it; and the estate to the Stanhopes earls of Chesterfield.
Near Whitchurch, but in Wing parish, is Ascot, the principal mansion of the Dormers, from whence descended the duchess of Feria in Spain, and others of noble note. It belonged since to the Stanhopes, and gave title of viscount to the earl of Caernarvon’s family, but is now in ruins. Here was a Benedictine cell, founded by the Empress Maud.

1813 MAGNA BRITANNIA

Wing, in the hundred of Cotslow and deanery of Muresley, lies about eight miles north-east of Aylesbury, and about three miles and a half from Leighton-Busard, in Bedfordshire. The manor was given by the Empress Maud, to the abbot and convent of St Nicholas at Angiers, who established a cell of Benedictine monks at Ascot, in this parish. This priory and the manor of Wing having been seized as the property of an alien monastery, were granted in 1416 to the nuns of St Mary de Pré, near St Alban’s. On the suppression of the smaller monasteries, the manor of Wing was given to Cardinal Wolsey : having been resumed by the king on his attainder, it was granted in 1532 to John Penn esq and in 1544, (the king it is probable having repossessed it by an exchange) to Sir Robert Dormer, who entertained the Princess Elizabeth at Ascot-House, in 1554, when on her road to London as a prisoner, soon after her sister’s accession to the throne : his Grandson, Sir Robert, was in 1615 created Baron Dormer of Wing. The eldest son of the first Lord Dormer, who was in 1628 created Viscount Ascot and Earl of Carnarvon, lost his life fighting bravely for his king at the battle of Newbury, in 1643. The titles of Earl of Carnarvon and Viscount Ascot became extinct on the death of Charles Earl of Carnarvon, without male issue, in 1709 : the title of Baron Dormer of Wing devolved to the descendants of a younger son of the first Lord Dormer, who settled in Peterley, in this county. The manor of Wing, and most of the Buckinghamshire estates, passed in marriage with his elder daughter and coheir, to Philip Earl of Chesterfield, and were by him given to his second son, Sir William Stanhope, who leaving no male issue, they descended to the present Earl of Chesterfield. Ascot-house, the seat of the Dormers, which was situated in Wing Park, is described by Browne Willis as having a noble apartment built by Inigo Jones. He says that it was suffered to go to decay after the year 1720, and that Sir William Stanhope, about the year 1727, sold the deer out of the park, and cut down the timber, which was very fine. Mr Willis mentions that he himself bought some of it at one shilling and sixpence a foot, for building the chapel at Fenny-Stratford : he adds, that in his remembrance, the last Earl of Carnarvon kept up great hospitality at Ascot-house, and had a fine bowling green, which was constantly open for the amusement of the neighbouring gentry. Wing Park remains inclosed, but the house has been many years pulled down.

King Edward II in the year 1308, confirmed a manor in Wing, together with the advowson of the priory, to John Warren, Early of Surrey. The earl gave it to his brother-in-law, Edmund Earl of Arundel, to whom it was confirmed by the king in 1315. From the Earl of Arundel it descended by female heirs to the Mowbrays and Berkeleys. The Marquis of Berkeley gave it with other estates to Sir Reginald Bray : it is probable that it was purchased of his representatives by the Dormer family.

The parish church is supposed to have been built soon after the manor was given to the nunnery of St Mary de Pré. In the north aisle is the tomb of Sir Robert Dormer, grantee of the manor, who died in 1552 : in the burial place of the Dormers are handsome monuments of Sir William Dormer, who died in 1575, (with his effigies in gilt armour) and Robert the first Lord Dormer, who died in 1617 : there are some monuments also for the family of Fines.

The great tithes of this parish were appropriated to the abbey of St Nicholas, at Angiers, and afterwards to the nunnery of St Mary de Pré. The rectorial estate is now the property of the Earl of Carnarvon, who is patron of the vicarage. The parish has been inclosed by an act of parliament, passed in 1797, when allotments of land were given to the impropriator and the vicar, in lieu of tithes, and an allotment to the poor for fuel. Dorothy Lady Pelham, sometime wife of Sir William Dormer, founded an alms-house at Wing, in the year 1596, for eight poor persons, and endowed it was 30l per annum.

Ascot, Burcot, and Crofton, are hamlets in this parish ; Cotslow, a depopulated hamlet, of which only one house remains, gives name to the hundred. The manor of Ascot was given by Richard Grenville esq to Sir Robert Dormer, in exchange for an estate in Wotton, and has since passed with Wing.

1831 A TOPOGRAPHICAL DICTIONARY OF ENGLAND, VOL 4

WING, a parish in the hundred of COTTESLOE, county of BUCKINGHAM, 3 miles (S.W. by W.) from Leighton-Buzzard, containing 1086 inhabitants. The living is a vicarage, in the archdeaconry of Buckingham, and diocese of Lincoln, rated in the king’s books at £18. 16. 3., and in the patronage of the Earl of Chesterfield. The church, dedicated to All Saints, is a remarkably fine structure. There is a place of worship for Wesleyan Methodists. An almshouse for eight poor persons was founded, in 1596, by Lady Pelham, with an endowment of £30 per annum, to which Sir William Stanhope, in 1772, bequeathed an annuity of £6. 10. A Benedictine priory, a cell to the monastery of St. Nicholas at Angiers in France, was founded at Ascot, in this parish, by the Empress Maud, which, after the suppression, came into the possession of Cardinal Wolsey.

1832 A GEOGRAPHICAL DICTIONARY OF ENGLAND AND WALES

WING 4 miles N.W. of Ivinghoe. At this place there was a Priory of Aliens, bestowed by Maud, the Empress, to the Monastery of St. Nicholas; but granted, by Hen. VIII., to Sir William Dormer. Popula. 1,086.

1848 A TOPOGRAPHICAL DICTIONARY OF ENGLAND

(available online)

WING (All Saints), a parish, in the union of Leighton-Buzzard, hundred of Cottesloe, county of Buckingham, 2½ miles (S. W. by W.) from LeightonBuzzard; containing, with the hamlets of Ascott, Burcott, Crafton, Littleworth, and Wingberry, 1274 inhabitants, of whom 808 are in Wing township. The parish is situated near a branch of the river Ouse, and comprises 5600 acres, of which 4000 are pasture, 1520 arable, and 80 woodland. The Grand Junction canal, and the London and Birmingham railway, run along the eastern boundary of the parish, and the road from Oxford to Cambridge through the village. The living is a vicarage, valued in the king’s books at £18. 16. 3.; net income, £338; patron and impropriator, Samuel Jones Loyd, Esq. The church is a remarkably fine structure, containing about 400 sittings. There is a place of worship for Wesleyans; also an hospital founded in 1596 by Lady Pelham, widow of Sir William Dormer, for eight persons, and endowed by her with property producing, with a bequest from Sir William Stanhope in 1772, an income of £72. A fund of about £20 arising from bequests, with £10. 15. under the charity of Thomas Pratt, of Wingrave, is annually distributed in great-coats and other clothing. A Benedictine priory, a cell to the monastery of St. Nicholas, at Angiers, in France, was founded at Ascott by the Empress Maud, and after the suppression came to Cardinal Wolsey.

1868 THE NATIONAL GAZETTEER: A TOPOGRAPHICAL DICTIONARY OF THE BRITISH ISLANDS, VOL 3

Wing, a par. in the hund. of Cottesloe, co. Bucks, 3 miles S.W. of Leighton-Buzzard. The village is situated near a branch of the River Ouse and the Grand Junction canal. The line of the London and North-Western railway runs along the eastern boundary of the parish, and the road from Oxford to Cambridge passes through the village. The par. includes the hmlts. of Ascott, where was once a Benedictine priory founded by the Empress Maud; Burcott, Crafton, Littleworth and Wingberry; also Wing Park, which is still enclosed, but its mansion, Ascott House, the ancient seat of the Dormers, and afterwards of the Earls of Chesterfield, has been pulled down. The living is a vic. in the dioc. of Oxford, value £340. The church, dedicated to All Saints, contains an antique font and tombs of the Dormers. The edifice has recently been restored. There are National schools for both sexes, built in 1850 by Lord Overstone, and almshouses, called Dormer’s Hospital, founded in 1562 by Lady Dorothy Pelham, with an income from endowment of £60 per annum. The other charities produce about £35 per annum.

1872 IMPERIAL GAZETTEER OF ENGLAND AND WALES, VOL 2

WING, a village, a parish, and a sub-district, in Leighton Buzzard district, Bucks. The village stands 2 1/2 miles SW of Leighton-Buzzard r. station, and has a post-office under Leighton-Buzzard. The parish includes 4 hamlets, and comprises 5,310 acres. Real property £9,391. Pop. in 1851, 1,376; in 1861, 1,504. Houses, 306. The property is subdivided. W. park belonged to the Dormers, passed to the Earl of Chesterfield, and was bought by Lord Overstone; but the mansion of it has been taken down. The living is a vicarage in the diocese of Oxford. Value, £400. Patron, Lord Overstone. The church is of different periods, from Saxon or early Norman onwards; and was restored in 1850. An alien priory was at Ascott. There are parochial schools, almshouses for 8 persons, and other charities £18. The subdistrict contains 3 parishes. Acres 11,010. Pop., 2,492. Houses 500.

1894 CASSELL’s GAZETTEER OF GREAT BRITAIN AND IRELAND, VOL 6

Wing, pa. and vil., Mid Bucks., 3 s.w. of Leighton Buzzard; ac. 5,310; soil various, overlying clay. W. was formerly a place of some importance. In 1255 a charter was granted by Henry III. for a market every Thursday and a fair for three days at Michaelmas. The church of All Saints (restored) is of various periods, and includes some Saxon work. There are monuments to the family of Fynes from 1686 to 1758, and several monuments to the Dormers, with others, ranging from 1542 to 1729. There are also brasses with effigies dating from the 15th cent. The Wesleyans and Primitive Methodists have chapels. Dormer’s Hospital was founded 1562 for eight men and women, and there are several charities. Charlotte Cottage, built 1886, is a hospital for the sick poor of the vil. W. Lodge is a seat.

1914 BUCKINGHAMSHIRE by E.S. ROSCOE

Wing (Leighton Buzzard, 2 3/4m.) is a large village on the western front of one of those long hills which are formed by the oolitic outcrop, and are so characteristic of the Vale of Aylesbury. On its southern side runs the road to Aylesbury ; on its northern the road to Stewkley and Cublington. A charming little bicycle ride or walk is from Cheddington Station, through Mentmore, and to approach the village through the immense meadow known as Wing Park. Here and there may be seen an old and picturesque cottage, but Wing has nothing like the charm of many less important villages in the county. The almshouses (1562), near the Aylesbury road, among small gardens, are noticeable.

The church is important, but it has not the same beauty as Milton Keynes or Maids Moreton. It is a large church with W. tower, aisles and a curious chancel, with polygonal apse raised above the level of the nave, and having beneath it a crypt of rough flint, which, as well as the apse, is usually considered as Saxon work. The three western arches of the nave are massive but ugly, and are Saxon, while the eastern arches are E.E. There are, however, several good early Dec. windows and a P. east window. The rood screen and the screen in S. aisle (the top of the rood screen is modern) are interesting examples of early 16th century work. The old reading desk, now at W. end of N. aisle, is also noticeable. Externally the S. porch is a fine specimen of P., though the influence of the previous period is visible, not only in the pinnacles, but in the central niche and the singular animals who crouch above the drip-stone. The tower is also P.

Wing is rich in monuments. On the N. side of chancel is a fine and reposeful monument to Sir W. Dormer (died 1575) and Dorothy, his wife. They lie side by side, but Sir William somewhat higher than his wife — two life-sized figures in the dress of the period, marked by a breadth of treatment which prevents the realism from being disagreeable. Below are their children — among them some babes at rest. Opposite to them is the monument to Sir Robert Dormer and Dame Elizabeth, his wife, two kneeling figures. The Dormer Monument in N. aisle (1552) is an excellent piece of work of Itchan design. Of the monumental brasses the most interesting is that to Thomas Cotes in S. aisle, porter at Ascott Hall, 1648. He is represented kneeling, with a porter’s staff under his feet, a high-crowned hat and a large key lying behind him, beneath is this quaint rhyme — “Honest old Thomas Cotes, That sometime was Porter at Ascott Hall, hath now (alas) Left his Key, Lodg, Fyre, Friends and all to have A Roome in Heaven. This is that good man’s grave. Reader prepare for thine, For none can tell But that you Two may meete to-night. Farewell.” Set up at the apoyntment and charges of his Frend, Geo. Houghton. In the same aisle are two more effigies, rather worn, commemorating Harry Blacknall (1460) and his wife, Agnes (1489) ; and in the N. aisle the brass effigies of a civilian and his wife, without inscription.

At Ascott, a short distance to the E. of Wing, is a picturesque modern house, built and owned by Mr Leopold de Rothschild. It is on the site of the house once owned by the Dormers, whose monuments in the church have been mentioned.

A short distance from the house are the kennels of the stag hounds, established by Baron Meyer de Rothschild in 1847, and which, known among hunting men as the Barons, have offered sport and amusement to many generations, not only of purely sporting men, but to others, such as Anthony Trollope, who have found health and pleasure in gallops over the wide pastures of the Vale of Aylesbury.