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16 Market Square Leighton Buzzard

16 Market Square June 2008
16 Market Square June 2008

The Manor of Leighton Buzzard alias Grovebury was the principal landowner in the town before the 19th century. Bedfordshire & Luton Archives & Records Service has a full run of court rolls from 1393 to 1727 [KK619-715] and another full run from 1704 to 1867 [X288/1-23]. The service also has court rolls for other manor to own land in the town, the Prebendal Manor, from 1448 to 1459, 1588 to 1591, 1611 to 1622, 1627 and 1631 [KK792-1798]. A fair number of buildings in the Market Square were originally copyhold and a detailed study of these court rolls would probably produce quite detailed histories for a number of properties and the sites on which they stand, though it would take many years of study.

16 Market Square was listed by the former Department of Environment in 1975 as Grade II, of special interest. It dates from the 19th century and has a stucco front with a Welsh slated roof behind a parapet. The building has three storeys and a 19th century shop front.

Under the terms of the Rating and Valuation Act 1925 every piece of land and building in the country was assessed to determine the rates to be paid on them. Leighton Buzzard was assessed in 1927 and the valuer visiting 16 Market Square [DV1/R74/62] discovered that it was owned and occupied by Horace Edward Herington, chemist. He had two basement store rooms respectively measuring 14 feet by 13 feet and 12 feet by 13 feet.

The shop measured 17 feet 6 inches by 16 feet 6 inches and a back shop 12 feet by 11 feet. A lean-to store with a glass roof measured 12 feet by 10 feet. A sink completed the ground floor features. Upstairs were two rooms measuring 17 feet by 12 feet and 10 feet by 15 feet, whilst on the second floor were three store rooms measuring 10 feet by 15 feet, 9 feet 6 inches by 9 feet and 9 feet by 12 feet. A W. C. stood in the yard outside. The valuer commented: "Very nice front".

Rear of 16 Market Square in 1982
Rear of 16 Market Square in 1982 [Z50/72/108]