Taken from the Chronicle and Echo June 16th 1994

GRASS ROOTS

BUILDING started in Far Cotton in the 1850s and the area took its name from being "far" from nearby Cotton End! People from the centre of Northampton called the district, which belonged to the parish of Hardingstone, Frog's Island. It did not become part of Northampton County Borough until 1900. In the 1960s and 1970s much of old Far Cotton was demolished and a number of residents moved to Briar Hill, but they have retained their links with their former community. Some of the families who stayed in Far Cotton are now in their fifth generation. The district's population now stands at about 4,000.

The Clubs

Football - Delapre Old Boys (the pub is appealing for more players), Far Cotton Colts - an under 10 and under 12 league which will be set up in September (players are also wanted). Senior Boys Angling Club.

Far Cotton Boys Club: Youth club for boys and girls; Far Cotton Boxing Club (sponsored by the Golden Horse), plus others.

Super Sausage II: Northampton Custom and Rod Car Club and Northampton American Car Club meet every other Thursday from 7.30pm. A cruise is planned for July 3 at 10.30am from the diner to Hollowell Show.

St Mary's church rooms: Northampton 22nd and 23rd Rainbows; Brownies and Guides; Mustard Seeds; ladies' keep fit; badminton; mums and tots; St Mary's Mother's Union; Good Companions; youth club; Far Cotton Coop Ladies' Guild.

Methodist Church: Boys' and Girls' Brigade; Ladies' Club

Scout headquarters: St Mary's 13th Scout Group (Beavers to Venture Scouts).

Golden Horse: Darts, skittles and pool teams.

Far Cotton Working Men's Club.

Railway Social Club.

White Hart Social Club.



Cherished - Customised and American cars outside their owners' meeting place in Far Cotton

So Near, but once so far ...





The Abbey

ON the site of Delapre Abbey Simon de Senlis, second Earl of Northampton, founded a Cluniac convent in 1145.

In 1290 the body of Queen Eleanor rested in an adjoining church on way to Westminster Abbey for burial. King Edward I decreed that wherever it rested a memorial be erected. Only three of 11 remain - one at the top of London Road.

In 1460 Henry VI clashed with Lancastrian forces in Delapre meadows and was taken prisoner.

The convent was dissolved in 1538 by Henry VIII, passed into private hands and was later bought by the Bouverie family.

In 1946 the abbey and its 586 acres were bought by Northampton Corporation and became a public park. Northamptonshire Record Office and Society later moved in from Lamport, before moved to nearby Wootton Park.

The County Council leases the abbey nowadays for storage.

The Life Long Resident


Herbert Brinklow 77, of Delapre Crescent Road, Far Cotton has lived in the district all his life. "I remember when there were no houses up to Queen Eleanor Cross.

"Far Cotton was a village near enough. I can remember my father telling me it wasn't even in Northampton," he said.

"At that time all of the houses were terraced and only those in St Leonard's Road had front gardens.

"The houses were ever so small and you could leave your front door open then."

His wife Doreen, 67, moved to Far Cotton when she was nine. "About 40 years ago you could walk into the countryside within 10 minutes," she said.

"It's a close-knit community in Far Cotton and I think people are proud to come from here - I am."

The Landlord

FAR COTTON born and bred Graham Walker, 46, never dreamed he would become landlord of the Golden Horse, in Southampton Road, where he was a regular for 28 years.

He and his wife Jeannette have enjoyed working there during the last 19 months.

Years ago there were five pubs - The Golden Hind, The Rose and Crown, The Eagle, The Engineer and The Clinton Arms, but theirs is the only one that remains.

Cotton End still has The Pomfret Arms, The Railway Tavern, The Railway Social Club and The White Hart Social Club.

Graham and Jeannette organised last year's first Far Cotton carnival, which raised 2,219 for charity.

That, plus 1,281 raised by the pub's regulars from events which included a pool and fishing match and head shaving was given to the McManus Tavern appeal to buy Northampton General Hospital a machine that detects babies' hearing problems.

A committee headed by Graham is organising this year's carnival, on August 21. Floats and walkers plus Northamptonshire Police Band will parade round the district from Delapre Abbey.

There will also be side stalls, a funfair, a bouncy castle, and a car show put on by Northampton Custom and Rod Car Club and Northampton American Car Club who meet at the Super Sausage II diner, Far Cotton. In the evening Corby band Fifth Avenue will be playing at the Golden Horse.

Organisers are appealing for Northampton companies to donate competition prizes and sponsor the event.

Girls are also needed to compete for the title of Far Cotton Princess. Entrants, aged between eight and 12, do not have to come from Far Cotton. For details contact The Golden Horse on Northampton 767040.