Monthly Archives: December 2017

The Fascinating History of the Waterton Family of Deeping St James

On Thursday, 14th December, Keith Simpson will give an illustrated talk about the ancestors of Edmund Waterton (1830-1887) who settled in Deeping St James in 1879, naming his property “Waterton Hall”.   Edmund was an only child, whose 18 year old mother died soon after his birth, and his family tree included Sir Thomas More and Arawak Indians from South America.  His father, Charles Waterton of Walton Hall in Yorkshire was a remarkable character, described in one biography as “so artless, with a career so grotesque, and an eccentric so unique as to form an irresistible combination”.

This illustration of Charles Waterton sitting on the back of a live crocodile is typical of his reckless disregard for his own safety.  Even in old age he was still climbing trees with bare feet, in the nature conservation park he created in Yorkshire.        

Keith has an enthralling story to tell.  We hope you will join him at 7.30pm in the Conference Centre, Deepings School.  Mulled wine and soft drinks will be served.  Everyone is welcome. There is a charge of £2 for non-members.


As we approach the end of 2017, its interesting to recall that 20 years ago, construction of the Deepings bypass was in progress.  Work started in March 1997 – exactly 100 years after a motor car first entered Market Deeping.  It arrived on Tuesday afternoon, 29th July 1897 when “several ladies and gentlemen took advantage of a ride during its visit”.  That same year, the Rural District Council declared that no pigs were allowed to be driven on the James Deeping and Market Deeping roads due to the damage they caused.

By the 1930s, the increasing number of motor vehicles passing through the Deepings was causing annoyance and local people were already discussing the need for a bypass.  In 1957 a resident of Church Street applied for a reduction in his Rates, saying traffic there had doubled in the last five years, and vehicles jolting over the irregular road surface had caused part of his roof to be dislodged.

By the 1990s it was calculated that about 15,000 vehicles a day were using the A15 through Deeping, with 18,000 a day using the A16 Spalding to Stamford Road.  Derek Earis, the rector of St Guthlac’s said the church building was being damaged by vibrations from heavy traffic travelling past.  He also commented it was dangerous for people trying to dodge vehicles, when crossing the road to come to church.

In July 1998 the bypass was completed and open for traffic.   The official Opening Ceremony took place on 5th August.

We wish everyone a peaceful 2018!