Market Square

The Market Square c.1905

Click on the links on the map below:
Clickable map 27 Market Square 15 Market Square The George The George Cattle Market Keach's Meeting House Rogers Free School Bell Hotel Royal Oak Church Houses The Bank Punch House 14 Market Square

There are numerous references to the Moot Hall or Motehall in documents down to 1699, but it isn't clear exactly where in the Market Square it was or what happened to it. It wasn't the "ugly old timber and plaster Market House standing upon pillars" (Clear 1894, 117) which survived until 1840, according to the following reports:

1840: Bucks Advertiser and Aylesbury News, 29 Aug
  Some fourteen years ago the inhabitants of Winslow, inspired by commercial enterprise, and desirous of elevating their town to the same position, as a mart of agricultural produce, which it is said to have enjoyed about half a century back, united in their exertions in the erection of a market-house, for the better accommodation of business.  Their sanguine anticipations were, however, never realized; and the building being now considered of no utility, as it respects the object had in view at the time referred to, directions have been issued for its disposal by public sale.

1840: Bucks Advertiser and Aylesbury News, 12 Sep
  Winslow market-house has, we understand, been sold this week for the sum of ten guineas, and is to be pulled down in the course of next week.  The market will, however, be held as usual.

Some timbers may survive in nearby buildings, including two pillars in the doorway of 7 Market Square and one under the plaster of The George. The name of Market House was revived in the 1880s for 27 Market Square.

Black and white photo of the shop front decorated with flags  
Colour photo of the shop front
Midgleys' Ironmongers in 1935/6
The same shop in the early 1980s
A near-fatal accident took place outside the shop above in 1879:
Bicester Herald, 28 Nov
  A TERRIBLE DISASTER AT WINSLOW occurred on Saturday last, November 22, when Thos. Atkins, a groom in the employ of H. R. Lambton, Esq., was, it is feared, fatally injured.  When the extensive stud of spirited hunters, the property of Mr. Lambton, was returning from its usual morning exercise, one of the horses, which had been restive through the street, started at a terrific pace in the middle of the High-street, till it reached Mr. W. H. French’s ironmongery establishment, where its head collided against the plated glass front, smashing the window pane, and a few articles in the shop to atoms.  Atkins, who led the van of the troop of horses, had two under his care, the one he was riding having no saddle.  When he found the animal had the mastery of him, he relinquished his hold of the other, and used his endeavour to guide the one he was on into Horn street, but the horse dashing against the window, threw Atkins with terrible violence against the massive pillars of the doorway, his head receiving the force of the blow, which instantly stunned him.  He was picked up and carried in a chair to his home, blood flowing freely from his ears.  Dr. Newham immediately attended, and did all that medical skill could prescribe, but Atkins remained unconscious, and it is feared will not survive from the effects of an accident of such an alarming nature.  The horse, having done such execution, wrenched its head from the glass, cutting an ugly gash in its neck, and proceeded down “the Walk” till it was brought to a standstill at a stile.  The animal was taken home and placed under the care of a veterinary surgeon.  No fault can be found with the conduct of the groom, who bravely did all in his power to pull the animal the best road, and displayed great forethought in the emergency.  It is noticeable that several accidents have occurred to equestrians proceeding through the street in the same direction as the present case.  Should the runaway clear the Square safely, the turn to Sheep-street cannot be effected without mishap from the sharpness of the corner, and if the many turns into Horn-street are accomplished in safety, there is the imminent risk in the narrow exit from exit from the town at Tinker’s End Lane.  In the present calamitous instance a warm feeling of sympathy is expressed throughout the town with the sufferer, who, in thirty seconds, was precipitated from health and strength to agony and helplessness.
[In fact Thomas Atkins survived as he was recorded as a groom living in the High Street in the 1881 Census.]

Colour photo of Fulks's with a policeman walking past

Fulks & Son (1960s)

Bucks Advertiser and Aylesbury News, 21 Sep 1850
  On Wednesday evening week, a large assembly of all classes of persons was convened in the Market-place, Winslow.  They listened with great attention to the energetic addresses of the Rev. Edward Adey and Mr. Jabez Inwards, who exposed the evils of, and proclaimed the remedy for, intemperance.  The latter gentleman was occasionally interrupted by a sharp landlord [Richard Sharp of the Old Crown] whose craft was in danger, and who publicly and repeatedly declared that the sale of beer was required to increase the taxes and support the revenue of the crown.  The enquiries and objections of the opponent were readily met by Mr. Inwards with good humour and great ability.

Bicester Herald, 17 Oct 1879
  WINSLOW MICHAELMAS PLEASURE FAIR: was held on Wednesday, October 15.  The Market-square presented a lively appearance, and its tenants drew a large number of servants and others, who are the usual visitors on such occasions, to patronize their wares and amusements.  The noise and clamour of these Market-square gatherings has called forth the ire of some of the inhabitants of that locality, who have memorialized for their demolition; but, we understand, without effect.

Buckingham Advertiser, 16 July 1881
A handsome new three-light gas lamp has just been erected in the centre of the Market-square and no doubt will be found to be a great improvement when the dark evenings come on. [This was reported in all the local newspapers, but some said it had four lights. All photos show it with three.]

Bicester Herald, 19 Oct 1883
  WINSLOW PLEASURE FAIR was held on Wednesday last, October 17, and though somewhat larger than that of the last few years, was but a shadow of the times of which one of the local poets sings: “How jolly were the Winslow fairs when dancing ruled the night, when fiddlers played their favourite airs and chaps and girls got tight.”  The only noticeable feature was that in one of the larger shows when the performers were about to commence the entertainment the high wind took the top of the booth off, and alarmed the visitors.

Buckingham Advertiser, 30 Oct 1886
THE ANNUAL SHOW OF FAT STOCK will be held on the MARKET SQUARE, WINSLOW, on FRIDAY, December 10th, 1886, when the following PRIZES will be offered for competition subject to the Conditions, which may be had of the Hon. Secretary.
[There were classes for the owners and tenant farmers of the following:
CATTLE: Fat ox, fat cow or heifer, fat ox under 4 years, fat maiden heifer.
SHEEP: Fat wether sheep, fat shearling sheep, fat ewes.
PIGS: Fat pig under 12 months, fat pigs under 6 months.]
                                    GEO. WIGLEY, HON. SECRETARY.
Winslow, Oct. 28, 1886.

Buckingham Advertiser, 8 Oct 1887
  THE MARKET SQUARE.- The restrictions on the use of the Square for holding pleasure fairs, circuses, &c., are now removed  Messrs Hillier and Dunkley having canvassed the inhabitants of the Square, got twenty signatures in favour of its being thrown open and only one objection (which was against the use of steam organs), whereupon Mr Wigley gave consent on behalf of the Lord of the Manor.

Bucks Herald, 17 Dec 1887
  The annual Christmas Fat Stock Show and Sale took place here on Friday, Dec 9th, in weather which was fairly favourable.  The quantity of stock sent in to compete for the prizes offered was very good indeed, and the quality was excellent.  There was a splendid lot of cattle and sheep on view, though the supply of pigs was somewhat limited.  The show was held in the Market Square, the arrangements being well devised and admirably carried out by the Committee and Mr. G. Wigley, the hon. sec., who, as in previous years, was most assiduous in his efforts to promote the success of the fair and sale.

Buckingham Advertiser, 14 Oct 1893
  The public well in Winslow Market Square has been repaired, the water pumped out, clay puddled in between the well and the sewer, and samples taken of the water.  These were sent, one to Mr. W. W. Fisher, of Oxford, and the other to Dr. Du Pre, of London, and both analysts condemn the water as unfit for drinking or domestic purposes, and yet the public are to be allowed to use the water, the Board of Guardians sheltering themselves under the aegis that a printed notice has been placed on the pump stating that the water in condemned as above.
  It would have been far better if the Board had decided to close the well.  It is the tardiness to grapple with the subject of necessary improvements which is earning censure of the Local Government Board.  What the ultimate result will be is not far to seek.

Buckingham Advertiser, 30 Nov 1895: Winslow RDC
  WINSLOW, MARKET SQUARE.- A letter from Messrs. E. and E. H. Small, of Buckingham, solicitors to Mr. W. Selby Lowndes, was read stating they had advised Mr. Lowndes to sell his rights to the Market Square, for a fair amount of compensation.- Mr. Willis said he had sent a copy of this letter to the Winslow Parish Council for their consideration, and he now read a letter from the Chairman, Mr. Bullock stating the Council approved of the proposal to purchase the Lord of the Manor rights, and trusted that this Council would be able to arrange satisfactory terms.  He had written to Messrs. Small to ask what the exact terms were, but had not at present received any answer.  Councillor W. Hedges said the Lord of the Manor’s rights were not worth a farthing as it would take all the tolls to keep the Square in repair.  He thought the Lord of the Manor ought to hand over his rights if the Council undertook to keep it in repair.- Councillor Neal thought that was hardly fair as the Squire gave up his toll in the past, and made a good market of it, and saved every man who had stock to sell a good sum, so that they should not be nice to a penny in buying his rights.  As the tolls on the Market Square they were more to keep the stall holders in order than anything else, and they cost about £1 to collect.  He thought if they were offered the Square at a reasonable sum they should accept it.- It was agreed to adjourn the matter to the next meeting.

Bucks Herald, 14 Dec 1895
  Your Winslow readers will, no doubt, watch with some interest the negotiations which have been going on between the Winslow Rural District Council and Messrs. E. and H. Small with regard to the Lord of the Manor’s rights over Winslow Market-square.  The facts of the matter are briefly these: Whilst the Lord of the Manor lets the square to whom he thinks fit, and takes the tolls, amounting to about £5 a year, the surveyors of the parish have been in the habit of keeping it in repair. Their successors, however, the District Council, apparently live in a more utilitarian age.  At any rate, they argue, “If we keep the square in repair we ought to have the tolls.”  Nevertheless they were willing to give “a reasonable sum” for the Lord of the Manor’s rights.  But the mention of £100 has decidedly staggered them, and the matter has gone back to its former stage.

An inspector from the Board of Agriculture decided that the Market Square was not suitable for the fortnightly cattle market, which required a fenced-in area with a cleansable surface. Read more. In March 1896 Winslow Parish Council started consulting with the other councils and the Local Government Board, and a sub-committee produced a detailed report. Winslow RDC was told that it had no legal powers to run a market, which led to the suggestion that it should become an Urban District. Improving the Market Square was left to voluntary contributions.

Buckingham Advertiser, 23 Jan 1897
  Respecting the paving of Winslow market, we are glad to be able to announce that there is every prospect of the requirements of the Board of Agriculture being speedily complied with.  The efforts of the Committee and the hon.sec. (Mr. W. S. Neal) to raise the required sum by voluntary subscriptions have met with a most gratifying response.  The subscribers already include Lord Cottesloe, £10; Lord Addington, £10; Hon. T. F. Fremantle, £10; Mr. W. S. Lowndes (Lord of the Manor), £10; Mr. G. R. Greaves, £10; Mr. W. H. Lambton, £10; Mr. T. P. Willis, £10; Mr. G. D. E. Wigley, £10; Bucks and Oxon Union Bank, £10; and many smaller amounts.

Buckingham Advertiser, 3 April 1897
  THE MARKET.- The curbing and concreting of the space for the Market, preliminary to the asphalting, is being done by Mr. John Keys, of Winslow, and is making very satisfactory progress.

Buckingham Advertiser, 1st May, 1897
  We understand that through the substantial help of a gentleman of the town, the Winslow Market Committee will be able to asphalte the Square as well as the other portions of the street.

In 1897 an enquiry found that Winslow RDC was responsible for maintaining the footpaths around the Market Square. Read more.

Leighton Buzzard Observer, 16 Aug 1898
  “Winslow main street and Market Square,” writes a contemporary “are now looking their best.  The Market Square is very nicely asphalted, and the committee are to be congratulated on the success of their efforts for its improvement.  The High Street, from Mr. Willis's corner to the Bell corner, is paved with Victoria stone, the work of the County Council, and the only complaint now is that the remaining portion of the street wants treating in the same way.” On one market day in 1898 "the Market-square was full of cattle and calves, and there were no sheep pens" and lambs were blocking Horn Street. Read more.

1904: dispute about washing the Market Square after the Sheep Fair

Buckingham Advertiser, 19 Nov
  “The tyranny of the Board of Agriculture.”  This is the heading of a large poster printed in black ink on a blood-red ground, which has been issued by Mr. W. S. Neal of the Bell Hotel, Winslow, stating “Farmers are requested to attend in a body on the Market Square, Winslow, at 10.30 a.m. on Wednesday, November 23, to protest against the action of the Board of Agriculture in trying to close Winslow Market by vexatious prosecution.”
  Some time back an order was received from the Board of Agriculture with regard to the proper cleansing and disinfection of markets whereby, in the absence of waterworks, the Board made it necessary to limewash the paving, etc.  The Winslow District Council have been in the habit of effectively washing down the Market Square and other places by the aid of the water-cart, but it appears that this has scarcely been sufficient, and it has naturally brought them into conflict with the higher authorities, and it is surmised that summonses will be issued.  We believe, however, that every reasonable-minded person will admit that when precautions have been taken in the thorough washing-down of the square after the market as has been done under the directions of the Council, such an order of the Board of Agriculture becomes, as Mr. Neal says in his poster, not only vexatious, but tyrannical.
  It is to be hoped there will be a large attendance at the meeting Mr. Neal has called, and that a strong and unanimous protest will be sent to the Board of Agriculture.  It is only one more instance of the continual squeezing out of the very existence of the markets and business of our rural towns in favour of the larger centres, or what has become known as the centralisation principle.

Buckingham Advertiser, 3 Dec
  The summonses issued against the Winslow Rural District Council and Mr. W. S. Neal, proprietor of the Bell Hotel, came before a special sessions at Winslow on Wednesday.  The great interest taken in this case in the town and district was to be seen by the large attendance at the Court of farmers and dealers.  On another page we publish, somewhat fully, the proceedings.  Briefly stated they are that the Council has given its surveyor instructions to thoroughly cleanse the market sites and to distribute carbolic acid, but the other requirement as to the lime-washing has not been done.  At the onset Mr. Wilkins who appeared for the prosecution suggested the case should be adjourned in order to give the Council the opportunity of re-considering its decision as to the lime-washing.  Mr. Walsh, who appeared for the defence, objected to this, and the evidence of the prosecution was given.
  Mr. Walsh then submitted that the summons was bad owing to its combining two charges, viz., cleansing and disinfecting.  He contended that these were two separate summonses, and in confirmation of this he referred to a case quoted in the “Justice of the Peace,” where it was held by the judges that the conviction was bad for duplicity in a motor-car case.  Mr. Wilkins, on the other hand, argued that in the motor-car case the question was that of driving at a speed or in a manner which was dangerous to the public.  He therefore laid stress on the word “or,” stating that in the present instance the charge was that of cleansing and washing, therefore they had in one instance the word “or” and in the other “and,” or, as he put it, the junctive and disjunctive sense.  The Bench, however, decided that the information contained two distinct offences, and therefore they considered the summons bad, and dismissed it, adding that the same remark applied to the case against Mr. Neal.  Mr. Wilkins asked for a case to be stated, and this was readily granted.

[Sergeant Bunker]   …Witness (continuing): On the 19th of October I saw a number of cattle exhibited for sale on the Market Place, and also on the place under the Church Yard wall.  I was there again on the 2nd of November, and I again saw a number of cattle exhibited there for sale.  Cattle were standing on both places, and were exhibited for sale.  Between these two dates the places were not disinfected, and I spoke to the surveyor (Mr. Wise) about it.  He said that he could do nothing on his own authority, and that he should have to consult his Council.  I also called at the Clerk’s (Mr. Willis) office, but he was away from home.  After the sales of the 19th of October and the 2nd of November the surveyor had the places thoroughly washed down with 300 gallons of water.  The droppings were carted away to a field outside the town called Van Dieman’s Land, by the man who contracts for the scavenging with the Council.  The market is held about fortnightly, some times once in three weeks.  I believe there are 23 markets in the year.  Market Place is surrounded by houses.

[Mr Wise] … I have never received any instructions from the District Council to collect toll.  I know that tolls have been collected for other things standing on the Market Place, but not for the cattle.  The tolls are collected by the agent to the Lord of the Manor, I believe.  Mr. Lundy, I believe, collects the tolls from the Lord of the Manor.
  Mr. Small said he took it that these tolls and fairs had nothing to do with the markets for cattle and sheep.
  Mr. Walsh said it appeared that the Lord of the Manor generously allowed the cattle and sheep fairs to be held in the Market Place without collecting toll.

1907: Buckingham Advertiser, 19 October: Winslow RDC
  Mr. Wise reported that the well in the Market Square at Winslow had been opened.  It was a deep well of 72 feet, and he found that the timber was in a bad state and he had had some new timber inserted, as it was absolutely necessary.
  Mr. Illing said the old timber was in a very bad condition, and there did not appear to be much water in the well.
  Mr. Wise said there was only ten feet of water in the well.  It used to be 15 to 20 feet from the top of the well, and at one time the pump was raised because of the depth of the water.  But it had been very dry of late years and all the wells had suffered.
  Mr. Colgrove thought that perhaps the sewerage of the town had had something to do with it.

1914: Assessment (TNA, IR 58/2347)
Assessment no.183
Situation              Market Square
Description         Tolls
Gross Value: Buildings   £1/10/0
Rateable Value: Buildings             £1
Occupier & Owner  W.S. Lowndes Whaddon Hall
[stamp] SEP 30 1914
Particulars, description and note made on inspection     
Market Square Well & Pump             Fenced             4 Posts & Iron Rail                               
32 poles
Charges, Easements and Restrictions affecting Market Value of Fee Simple
Rights of way over the whole
Valuation – Market Value of Fee Simple in possession of whole property in its present condition
Right to charge Tolls g(ross) a(nnual) v(alue)       £1 - 10                                                                                  
Collection [illegible]                                                       10
£1 [illegible]           £  10
Site see below      £300
Right of Ways    £  10
Deduct Market Value of Site under similar circumstances, but if divested of structures, timber, fruit trees, and other things growing on the land
Available site 60 x 200 ft 1333 yds @ 4/6                 £300
Market Value of Fee Simple of Whole in in its present condition (as before)                           £10

Buckingham Advertiser, 29 Dec 1923
  For the past two or three years it has been the custom for the Whaddon Chase Hunt to meet at Winslow Market Square on Boxing Day, and every year there seems to be a bigger gathering.  Doubtless, the rumour, which proved to be unfounded, that the Prince of Wales would hunt with the pack attracted a large number of people, but the fixture is always a popular one, and this year proved no exception to the rule.
  The Market Square was filled with motor cars, traps and cycles, with the hounds in the centre, and the pavement closely packed with pedestrians, and the Square presented a very animated appearance.  The hunters themselves filled up the roadway, among those being: Sir Herbert Leon, Mr. James de Rothschild, Mr. Antony de Rothschild, Col. Smith Bingham, Capt. Lambton, Mr. R. Lambton, Mrs. Erskine, Mr. and Mrs. N. McCorquodale, Mr. E. L. Gosling, Mr. L. Cobham, Mr. P. C. E. Lovett, and a large gathering of farmers.
  Lord Dalmeny’s young daughter, Hon. Helen Primrose, was a picturesque little figure, being dressed in a scarlet coat and velvet cap.  When the Master (Lord Dalmeny) gave the word, the company made their way up the Buckingham Road, through Addington, across to Tuckey, where the covers were drawn.

The premises below have not yet been identified - suggestions welcome

Northampton Mercury, 23 Feb 1793
A small HOUSE and SHOP, at an easy Rent, with a neat Assortment of fresh GOODS, to be DISPOSED OF immediately, near the MARKET-PLACE, in Winslow, Bucks — Any Person, with a Capital of 100 l. may purchase the Stock, or Part of the Purchase-Money remain on the Premises, if required — The Stock may be taken at Prime Cost, without any Premium.
For Particulars, enquire (Post-paid) of Mr. Robert Osborn, Ironmonger and Seedsman, Banbury, Oxon.
NB The above was the property of Miss Cox, of Winslow, lately married, and for which reason it is to be disposed of.

Bucks Herald, 26 Oct 1811 (this could be no.15)
To Drapers, &c,
By W.Berry,
On Thursday the 31st Day of October, 1811, at the Bell Inn, Winslow Bucks, (punctually at Six o’Clock in the Evening), under such Conditions as shall then be produced, viz.
A Substantial well-built Brick and Tiled MESSUAGE, or TENEMENT, advantageously situated for Trade, in the MARKET-SQUARE, WINSLOW aforesaid; comprising an Entrance-passage in front, on the Right a Neat Parlour, on the Left a good Shop, with Bow-window, three Bed-Chambers, two Garrets, excellent Kitchen, in which is a good Pump, and plenty of Water, back Kitchen or Scullery, Beer and Coal Cellars, and suitable Offices, now in the Occupation of the Proprietor.
The above Estate is in complete Repair (Copyhold of Inheritance, held of the Manor of Winslow aforesaid, subject to Quit Rent, 3d. Herriot when it happens, Fine 6s. Land-Tax 3s 6d) and a desirable situation for a small genteel Family, or a person wishing immediately to enter into Business, as an early Possession may be had.
For further Particulars, enquire of Messrs. WYATT & WILLIS, Solicitors, Winslow, Bucks, who will send a Person to shew the Premises.
Particulars also may be known of the Auctioneer, Aylesbury, Bucks.


Copyright 31 January, 2024