The Fleckney Village Sign
The Village Sign is based on the Fleckney Emblem which was created by Cllr. John Middleton in 1987 for the Village. It incorporates the arms of five families who owned the manor of Fleckney from the 11th century until the beginning of the 20th century and the Lovelace motto, “Labor Ipse Voluptas” which translated means labour is its own reward. The ribbon has the medieval spelling of Fleckney.
The crest incorporates the Earl of Lovelace’s helm and coronet and two black mastiffs with red collars standing rampant as supports, these signify faithfullness, guardianship and courage.
The tripartite central boss incorporates the ermined cinquefoil of Leicestershire, a bush on a field which signifies its ruralness and a sheep’s head which signifies farming.
Very little is known about the history of Fleckney prior to the Norman Conquest. The name “Fleckney” with its alternative spelling of “Fleckenie” seems to be Saxon but it may well be Scandinavian.
During the reign of Edward the Confessor (1041-1066) land at Fleckney was held by Edwin Alfred. After the battle of Hastings land was distributed to friends of William the Conqueror with Robert Dispensator, steward to the King, being granted land in Fleckney, and at the time of the Domesday survey held the manor of Fleckney with rights over four carucates of land.
An Anglo-Norman baron that fought at the battle of Hastings and was Lord of Fontenay le Marmion in Normandy. Rose to prominence in the reign of Henry 1 when Roger Marmion held the fief of Tamworth in 1129. In norman french Marmion translates to cheeky kid and Roger is possibly the nephew of Robert Despensator, first Lord of Fleckney.
Ann Isabella Milbanke was 11th Baroness of Wentworth and only daughter of Judith Noel (10th baroness) and Sir Ralph Milbanke. She married Lord George Byron, the poet, in 1815. She inherited the manorial rights and her cousin was rector of Fleckney church. Lady Anne Isabella took an active interest in the village where Charles Noel was her land agent, providing money for a school and the church restoration.
Earl of Lovelace
Although we don’t know exactly when the brick works first started, Daniel Putt, a large landowner in Fleckney, is registered as a brickyard owner in 1830 and in 1841 Thomas Wakelin employed Joseph Peberdy as a “brickmakers labourer”. Brick yards appeared to be exempt from employment legislation and many children as young as five were employed but unregistered. The 1862 Children’s Employment Commission states that generally a brickmaker had three children helping him, often working twelve hours a day. Jack Badcock writes of Abraham Deacon, born in 1828, and says “As was usual he went to work in the brickyards at the age of five or six and within a few years his wages had risen to three shillings a week”.
The clay pit became a pond and has been called various names – Bateman’s, Peberdy’s, Gillies’s and Scrase’s. The introduction of machinery stopped the making of hand made bricks and the trade in Fleckney ceased completely in 1902.
The Village Green and Pond is now a protected green space in the centre of the Village and is used for special events and is there for everyone to enjoy.
For more information on the history of Fleckney visit Fleckney Library or the Fleckney History Group website at: https://history.fleckney.online