Ecton Village

Rectory Farm House

Rectory Farm House was built as the Glebe Farm in 1741 by the Reverend Eyre Whalley who was then the current rector of Ecton and married to Barbara Palmer, grandaughter of John Palmer

Eyre Whalley was instituted rector in 1738 following the resignation of the last incumbent. In 1743 he also became rector of Cogenhoe, holding both posts until his death in 1762.

Perhaps the most notable member of the Whalley family was Peter Whalley who, besides being rector of Ecton for just one year between March 1762 and February 1763, was vicar of St Sepulchre's, Northampton, headmaster of a number of schools, including Courteenhall Grammar School between 1752 to 1760 and editor of Bridges’ History of Northamptonshire. In addition he was a noted literalist publishing a number of papers including An inquiry into the learning of Shakespeare and A vindication of the evidences and authenticity of the Gospel. Palmer Whalley, eldest son of Eyre Whalley was instituted as rector in 1763 and held the living together with that of Wilby, becoming rector of Wilby in 1782, until his death in 1803. During his ministry of forty years he was confined to his room for long periods due to illness, during which time he composed and circulated among his parishioners the poem The Sick Minster's short but affectionate address to his people.

S: The farm was called Glebe Farm and the house was called (ask margaret) The Church paid the Rector’s fees. Old Canon Jephson used to grumble about them he was very poor you see. He used to preach sermons about it. About selling his watch or something. When he died the Church sold the farm back back to the estate. Broadfields we call it, not this one, or the one beyond me, but the one that goes down to the brook, that used to belong to Rectory farm, but the estate bought that back. During 1872, Northampton Corporation compulsorily purchased 114 acres of Glebe land from the Church and 117 acres of land from the Hall Estate for the new sewage farm at Great Billing. Because the old road from Gt Billing to Ecton passed through this land, a new road had to be constructed along the new northern boundary, which is the present Lower Ecton Lane. The Corporation had originally obtained powers to acquire a massive 570 acres, but having taken the 117 acres in 1872, the option to take the rest lapsed in 1876.

It would have been after the loss of land in 1872 that the tenant of the Glebe land, Samuel Sharman, decided to build a substantial brick barn with a large cattle yard that had big hovels on two sides. This used to be to the north side of Lower Ecton Lane and was equipped with its own well so that water could be pumped for the animals. Cattle were wintered here right up to 1979 and it was always known as Sharman’s Barn.

Suie Rands remembers that in Rectory Farm House lived old Mr. Timms which was owned by the Church, and Tom Dicks bought the Farm off the Church.The farm was called Glebe Farm . The Church paid the Rector’s fees. Old Canon Jephson used to grumble about them he was very poor you see. He used to preach sermons about it. About selling his watch or something. When he died the Church sold the farm back back to the estate. Broadfields we call it, not this one, or the one beyond me, but the one that goes down to the brook, that used to belong to Rectory farm.

The current residents of Rectory Farm House, Colin and Margaret Tinston, bought the house from Maud Dicks, the wife of Tom Dicks in 1981. They still live there with their sons Joseph and Liam Tinston. The barn was later sold by Maud Dicks for conversion and is now called the 'Old Barn'.