History of the Shelfords

The information presented here is taken from the publication Domesday to Dormitory - a History of the Landscape of Great Shelford

This booklet was published in the late 1970s and was the result of the work of 10 keen members of a Local History Class organized jointly by the Cambridge University Extra-Mural Board and the Workers Education Association. The class itself was originally run as a series of lectures and tutorials on the history of the Cambridge landscape and the booklet arose out of a desire by some members to carry out their own research on landscape history.

Every effort has been made to contact those involved in this work to obtain their permission to reproduce it on these web pages as copies of the book are no longer avaialable. It seems a great pity that this interesting work should be lost to future generations who have an interest in the history of the village.

The class was under the tutorage of C.C. Taylor and comprised the following members:

G.C. Baldry, K. P. Medcalf, A. G. Croft, F.A. Mitchell, J. R. Foreman, Mrs. J. Mitchell, H. Hepher, A. H. Robson, J. E. Jennings, Mrs. D. C. Robson

If any members of the class would like to get in contact, the Webmaster would be happy to hear from them.

The booklet is divided into the following chapters:


The Physical Background

The First Village

The Village in 1086 AD

The Village, 1100 to 1500 AD

The Village, 1500 to 1800 AD

The Medieval Fields

Parliamentary Enclosure and the end of The Medieval Fields

The Aftermath of Enclosure

The Last Years of the Old Village 1800-1835 AD

The Village and The Enclosure

The Coming of the Railways

The "Respectable Years" 1850 - 1900 AD

The Beginnings of a Modern Suburb

The Present Village

The Future

The Population of Great Shelford

The Buildings of Great Shelford

References and Sources