A recently published book
Felmersham - The History of a Riverside Parish
by Kenneth Shrimpton

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Bygone Felmersham and Radwell


"A very readable and
well produced book.”

"a work of commendable scholarship written in plain English
with appropriate brevity"

"Thank you - I have greatly enjoyed it"

"If I were an inhabitant or lived in the area I would want to own this book
 and use it well."
Robin Stains, British Association for Local History

A Bellarmine witch bottle
found in the parish


From ring ditches in Radwell to a witch bottle in Felmersham; from a 13C Italian mathematician to a medieval chapel in Radwell; medieval wall paintings, a ceremonial bucket and murder most foul;  this book is a comprehensive account of the history of Felmersham parish.

Contains over a hundred illustrations
with 28 in colour.
 Includes original research and fieldwork.
Hardback cover –  212 pages 

Available from:  
Milton Ernest Garden Centre,
  Milton Ernest, Bedford
Sharnbrook Post Office,
  Sharnbrook, Bedford.
Sun Inn, Felmersham.
and locally from the author.

Orders by post,
The book may be purchased by post at a cost of £12.30 including postage.
Payment may be made by cheque or purchased Online by credit or debit card using PayPal. Please email:

for details. (Note: replace the
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In order to avoid your email being deleted as spam please type in the subject line (using upper case):  FELMERSHAM HISTORY BOOK

Page from Arpin's Bible

Felmersham - The History of a Riverside Parish.

Edward Arpin’s Felmersham, 1756 to 1836

We all perhaps wish we had kept a diary but in reality very few of us do. Yes, we record appointments and dates but most people tend not to do a “Samuel Pepys”. Very few of us actually record the everyday events happening around us year after year. One such person who did was Edward Arpin, and he kept his diary over an eighteen year period from 1813 to 1831, together with previously made notes and recollections dating back to 1780.

For us the Edward Arpin story begins circa 1929 when Mrs Marshall, of Sherington, was dusting an old book and some yellow papers, covered in faded writing, fell out. Fortunately Mrs Marshall brought this discovery to the notice of Mr Robertson Scott, Editor of The Countryman, who realised the importance of the documents and published them in The Countryman under the heading “A Grave-Digger’s Diary: 1814-1831”.

In fact Edward Arpin was not a gravedigger per se but an agricultural worker who also happened to dig graves when necessary. However, a more interesting and important feature of his life was that he was asstant [parish] Clark 14 years to Richard Wills and in 1823 he became parish clerk until 1834(?). This puts Arpin into a unique social class because not only was he literate, which was unusual for a farm worker of that time but he was also a public servant. It is this wider experience of life combined with his ability to read and write, which make his diaries so interesting. His writings are not diaries in the accepted sense as they are simply dated notes on scraps of paper. Again this adds to the interest, because here was

A second book by Kenneth Shrimpton:  Bygone Felmersham and Radwell
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