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A small group of us met up at the delightful Dovecote Buttery at Newton Nr Geddington for refreshments and a chat, before our tour with Kam, our guide was there to greet us.  Some of us had met Kam before on his tour of Geddington and the Queen Eleanor Cross.  

We began our tour of Newton, (also known as Newton in the Willows) which is now a pretty little hamlet, with Kam informing us of its historic past, including a visit to the haunted house where the ghost of a young lady has been seen several times walking across from her home to the long vanished church, which had been destroyed by Cromwell.

Kam, who is very knowledgeable and passionate about the local area, continued to inform us of the history and the connections with the Duke of Buccleuch (owner of Boughton House,Geddington} as we strolled along the pathway leading down from the village approximately ¼ mile to the deconsecrated church of St Faiths, now standing quite alone, but was originally the family chapel of the Tresham family whose residence once stood in the adjoining field. Here we learnt about the Newton Rebellion.  

On the 8th June 1607 over 1,000 protesters including women and children gathered in front of the Tresham residence to protest against the enclosures by pulling out hedgerows and filling ditches.  King James 1st had ordered his deputy Lieutenants in Northamptonshire to put down the riots.  The Treshams at Newton had been enclosing common land which had been part of Rockingham Forest but they had the backing of the King.

The Royal Proclamation was read twice to the rioters as a warning but they refused to stop so they were charged at by the gentry and their forces on horse back opening fire on the rioters.  It is believed approximately 50 protesters were either killed or injured in the battle and were taken to the Church of St Faiths as prisoners.

The captured leaders of the rebellion were charged with high treason and were hanged, drawn and quartered with their body parts dispersed round the Country as a warning to others.  

A memorial to the rebels stands outside St Faiths church wall.

Also, to the rear of the field where the Tresham residence once stood and the battle took place, stands an exceptionally large dovecote, the largest still standing dovecote in Europe.  It has around 2,000 nesting boxes and is the only remaining building of the house that once stood there and witnessed the battle of the Newton Rebels.

A fascinating piece of local history in our area that is unknown by many.  Kam bought it back to life for us with his story telling and knowledge.

We slowly strolled back to the Dovecote Buttery, where Kam joined us for a lunch.  A very enjoyable day.

photos available here