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Caldecote Vicarages

The Old Vicarage from Hitchin Road March 2010
The Old Vicarage from Hitchin Road March 2010

The Vicarage in Upper Caldecote was built as a house for the curate in 1873, following the completion of a new chapel of ease for the village (now the church) in 1867. The site for the curate’s house, next to the church, was given by John Harvey of Ickwell Bury to The Grocer’s Company, which owned the advowson of Northill and thus of Upper Caldecote, specifically for the house in 1872 [P142/2/5/1]. Early in 1874 the Company conveyed the site to The Rector of Northill, Francis Pott as well as John Harvey and Joseph Henry Warner, Master of the Grocers’ Company to act as trustees [P142/2/5/1].

The Rating and Valuation Act 1925 specified that every building and piece of land in the country was to be valued to determine its rateable value. Caldecote was assessed in 1927 and the valuer visited the Church House [DV1/C4/62], it would not become The Vicarage until the following year when Caldecote became a separate ecclesiastical parish. He found that the house stood in just under an acre of land and noted that the curate’s stipend was £150 per annum.

The brick and tiled premises (“Built 1873”) comprised a small hall, a store room or cloakroom, a w. c., a study (“not used”), a drawing room used as a bedroom to the west, a lounge to the south and south-west (“very nice”), a kitchen, scullery, store and larder downstairs. Upstairs lay five bedrooms, including one over the lounge and one with a linen cupboard, a boxroom and a “very bad” bathroom. The valuer noted that the upstairs rooms were “not used at all. House occupied by two people Much too big”.

Another valuer ten years later, on 21st July 1937 wrote: “Saw Mr. Kays, Vicar out. Bathroom enlarged, w. c. added, living now £400. Not attractive place, not very lettable”.

The Old Vicarage March 2010
The Old Vicarage March 2010

In 1931 the Grocers’ Company contributed £33/9/9 to cover the cost of installing electric light in the Vicarage [P142/2/5/3] and four years later’ repairs totalling £9/4/- were carried out [P142/2/5/4]. In 1938 the surviving trustees, who were William Henry Pott, Charles Stanley Pott and Arthur Henry Potton, conveyed the Vicarage to the Church Commissioners [P142/2/5/6].

In 1973 the Vicarage was sold, becoming a private house, and a new temporary vicarage acquired at 1 Wordsworth Close [P142/2/5/7]. This continued in use until 1975 when it was sold and the Vicar moved into a new house at 2a Biggleswade Road, in between the Old Vicarage and the church. This remains the house for the incumbent of the three parishes of Northill, Old Warden and Upper Caldecote at the time of writing [2010].

 The Vicarage March 2010
The Vicarage March 2010