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POPULATION MAKE-UP OF DAVENTRY AND THE DISTRICT

At the 2011 Census, the district had a population of 77,843, a little under a third of whom (25,026) lived in the town of Daventry. Other significant settlements include Brixworth, Long Buckby and Weedon Bec. The rest of the district is predominantly rural.

Daventry District MapRegion: East Midlands
County: Northamptonshire
Radius: 255.8 sq mi (662.6 km2)

SETTLEMENTS
• Althorp, Arthingworth, Ashby St Ledgers
• Badby, Barby, Boughton, Braunston, Brington, Brixworth, Brockhall, Byfield
• Canons Ashby, Chapel Brampton, Charwelton, Church Brampton, Church Stowe, Clay Coton Clipston, Cold Ashby, Coton, Cottesbrooke, Creaton, Crick
• Daventry, Dodford, Draughton
• East Farndon, East Haddon, Elkington, Everdon
• Farthingstone, Fawsley, Flore
• Great Brington, Great Oxendon, Guilsborough
• Hanging Houghton, Hannington, Harlestone, Haselbech, Hellidon, Holcot, Holdenby, Hollowell
• Kelmarsh, Kilsby
• Lamport, Lilbourne, Little Brington, Long Buckby, Lower Catesby
• Maidwell, Marston Trussell, Moulton
• Naseby, Newnham, Norton
• Old, Overstone
• Pitsford, Preston Capes
• Ravensthorpe
• Scaldwell, Sibbertoft, Spratton, Stanford­on­Avon, Staverton, Sulby
• Teeton, Thornby
• Upper Catesby, Upper Stowe
• Walgrave, Watford, Weedon Bec, Welford, Welton, West Haddon, Whilton, Whilton Locks, Winwick, Woodford Halse
• Yelvertoft

DEMOGRAPHICS

Age Profile

Age Profile

In 2011, the largest 5‐year cohort was aged 45‐49 with a population of 6,590. This reflects the baby boom of the early 1960s. The fastest growing cohort since 2001 is the 60‐64 age group which has increased by 64.4%. This reflects the post war baby boom. The other fastest growing cohort (albeit from a small baseline number) was those aged over 90 years of age. This reflects increasing life expectancy. The population aged over 65 has increased 36.6% since 2001. This age group makes up 16.9% of the population, up from 13.4% in 2001. The 2013 Mid‐Year Population Estimates for Daventry District was 78,556.

Ethnic Profile

At the time of the 2011 Census, 93.1% of Daventry District residents were from a White British background compared to 95.8% of the population in 2001. In 2011, 3.4% are from an ethnic minority an increase from 2.4% in 2001. The groups showing the biggest increase were Bangladeshi, African Other Black and Other Asian. Those who stated their ethnicity was White Other has increased by 1,073 (103.3%).

HISTORY, written by local historian, Liam Howley

The market town of Daventry is situated in Northamptonshire, well connected with two other nearby market towns – Northampton and Rugby. Part of the larger Daventry District (formed in 1974) the town of Daventry has a population of over 25,000 people. The history of Daventry however dates back much further than the 1970’s, with signs of Iron Age settlement discovered on the towns Borough Hill.

Viking settlement plays a key role in the history of Daventry, as it does in the wider history of settlement in Britain. Danish Viking settlers established the settlement of Danetre, the previous name for Daventry that is still locally well known. It has been said that the Danish settlers planted an Oak tree on Borough Hill, symbolising their belief that the settlement was the centre of England. This history is symbolised in the badge of Daventry Town F.C, while the name Danetre is used around the town to this day.

Over time Daventry gained a number of charters, which granted certain rights. A key charter came in 1576, under the reign of Elizabeth I. This gave Daventry borough status, making the town a charter town and its people ‘freemen’ or ‘burghers’. When, in 1974, the borough of Daventry was merged with the surrounding rural district to form the current Daventry District, the town of Daventry required Charter Trustees to maintain the historic charters. The Trustees remained in their position until 2003, when Daventry Town Council was formed. The charters can be found in the Daventry Museum.

In June 1645, Charles I and his army camped upon Borough Hill. The intention was to relieve the Siege of Oxford, however the New Model Army, led by Sir Thomas Fairfax, had been instructed to engage the Royalist forces and subsequently clashed near Daventry. Despite the legend that the king was visited by a ghost at the Wheatsheaf Inn, warning him he must continue north, the decision was made to fight. The decisive Battle of Naseby followed, turning the favour of the war toward the Parliamentarians.

Another notable figure is Joseph Priestley, a dissenting clergyman and chemist. Priestley has been credited with the independent discovery of Oxygen and studied at a Dissenting academy in Daventry.

While Daventry residents may now travel to Long Buckby to catch the train, this was not always the case. Until the late 1950’s Daventry had its own railway station, situated on a line between Weedon and Leamington Spa. Villages such as Weedon and Braunston also had stations. Declining passenger numbers was cited for the lines eventual closure.

Borough Hill was for many years home to a more permanent resident of note – The BBC. The Daventry transmitting station was a major feature of Daventry, as well as an important employer of local people. The site opened in 1925, notably broadcasting its longwave signals under the call sign 5XX.

A notable broadcast from Daventry was the BBC Empire Service (now World Service) from 1932. The announcement ‘Daventry Calling’ would have been familiar to many both at home and around the world.

Daventry had been chosen for the fact that the greatest amount of land mass could be covered by radio from there. However, on Sunday 29th March 1992 the station fell silent. Only a single mast remains.

In 1944, the transmitting station was involved in a tragic accident. Two American B-17 aircraft were returning after a bombing raid on Kassel, Germany. They were headed for RAF Chelveston, however their vision was restricted by low cloud. One plane flew through the wires of the transmitting station and returned to base. The other struck the wires and crashed on the hill. The names of those who died in the crash are as follows:

Finis Harris

John Griffin

R.L. Mason

Herschel McCoy

Cliff Melton

Robert L. Burry

Willie Barnes

Charles Nordland

Laverne Ridge

In 2015, a plaque was added to the Daventry War Memorial in remembrance of the men who died in the crash.

In 2016, on the day the transmitting station closed, the first podcast of Daventry Radio was released. Daventry Radio does not aim to be the BBC. We aim to be a local radio station that keeps residents of Daventry town and district informed and entertained. Daventry has a rich history, but there is plenty going on in the present. Stay tuned.

LINKS

If you want to find out more about the community of Daventry and the district, check out the following websites:

www.daventryfirst.co.uk

www.lovedaventry.com

www.daventrymuseum.org.uk

www.daventrytowncouncil.gov.uk

www.daventrydc.gov.uk