Aims of Chrishall Archive Group:


  • To collect, record and preserve documents, photographs and artefacts relating to the history of Chrishall and the surrounding area.
  • To publish and foster an interest in and appreciation of the history of Chrishall and the surrounding area by display or lecture, in print or on the web.
  • To welcome and inform residents of the history of the village and surrounding area.
  • To provide regular opportunities to meet and discuss the history of the village.


On this page you will find details of some of the projects that the history group have undertaken over the years. Some are actively being worked on while others are essentially “finished”. However a history project is never really finished of course as there are always new finds that can be added. If any of the projects here are of interest and you think you might be able to contribute something, large or small, then do please let us know. 


The Old School

chrishall school

Chrishall School was built in 1862 and became a centre for the village, not only for providing education but also for providing a social space which was used for numerous village meetings, concerts, parties and plays over the years. But the construction of the school in the first place caused a lot of debate, even being recorded in speeches in parliament! So what was the cause of all the discussion? This project would like to pull together a full history of the old school and its development, maybe leading to a booklet. We have plenty of information sources. If you would like to be the one to pull them together let us know.

Who Lived Where

Faerie Cottage previous home of Irene CranwellWho Lived Where logoWho Lived Where (WLW) is our project to record the history of the houses of Chrishall.  Read about the start of the project here. We are making good progress. Keep an eye out for the WLW logo around the website and when you visit the Archive. And if you have information or deeds you could lend us for copying please get in touch.

Bulls Hearne to Maplestile

history group field name project
Goodwins, Lemons Dale, Simons Mead, Maplestile… these are all field names connected with Chrishall, but where were they? In this project we are hoping to map the field names of the village and perhaps even find their source. Once we have researched the names we need some way of displaying them. It is relatively easy to create an online image but it would be great to have a large roll out map we could have in the Archive too. If anyone knows how we might do that – or if you want to research some of the names, do speak up!


Lettice Martin and the Tudor village

In the 1560s Lettice Martin left money in her will to the poor of 26 surrounding villages including Chrishall. 500 years later many of these villages are still benefitting from Lettice’s bequest. This enigmatic lady is careful about giving up her secrets and I hesitate to put this project in the ‘finished’ section, as there is more to learn. However, some detailed research has led to an article about Lettice and also a village trail for you to enjoy. And if you are interested in digging further into this  part of Chrishall’s history then please contact us.

POW Camps

POW camp image
In August 2020, in the middle of the Covid-19 pandemic but keeping to the rules in place at that time, Rachel Radford and the Chrishall archivist, Rosemarie Gant, were shown around the remains of the POW Camp in the grounds of Ickleton Grange by Charles Frankau and Jane Frankau. In September 2020, they were shown round the camp at Chrishall Grange by Robert Law. Subsequent research revealed information about both camps and can be seen on the Ickleton site here (opens in a new tab)

Australian Connections

Australia 1850
Times were tough in the 1850s, particularly for agricultural workers. There were schemes to encourage people to emigrate to places such as America and Australia, and many took up these offers even though it would mean many months by ship in crowded and often unsanitary conditions. This project is looking at the families who left the village at this time and how they fared in their new locations.

Update: you can now read all about our research in the “Exodus” pages. Click here for the link.

Interested? Find out more.

If any of our projects have sparked your imagination do get in touch to find out if you can help. There’s always room for more researchers but also people who have ideas on how to present our research in interesting ways. Happy to discuss any ideas you might have.

error: Content is protected !!