Eatons Community Association

Working to enhance the community and keep alive the identity of Eaton Socon & Eaton Ford

Photo: St Mary's Church

ESCA Books

We publish a comprehensive set of books covering all aspects of life in the Eatons. They are available to buy at May Day and our history exhibitions, or contact us and we can get a copy to you. Please make cheques payable to ESCA, and enquire about postage rates if outside a 5 mile radius of the Eatons. Prices are correct as of May 2019.

To mark the centenary of World War 1, Sue has re-documented all the military graves in Eaton Socon. You can download free copies here for both the church and churchyard and the cemetery

Recent Books

  • Bushmead School

    Bushmead School (2019)

    Bushmead Secondary School opened in 1958 and closed in 1969 - lasting just 11 years but an important school for Eaton Socon and the nearby Bedfordshire parishes. Written for a school reunion in 2019 it gives information and lots of photographs on the school building, its teachers and pupils. At the back is a list of pupils who are known to have attended. £5.00

  • Eaton Socon in the Great War

    Eaton Socon in the Great War (2014)

    This book reveals information about life in the parish when many men had gone off to serve in the Great War. Learn about the Eaton Socon Red Cross Hospital, the effect of hundreds of Scottish soldiers that spent the first winter in St Neots, and where the Belgian refugees lived. Discover what the children and the ladies of the village did to help the men and how collections of eggs, blackberries, conkers and bones helped the war cause. Read about the Volunteer Regiments, the tribunals, the condition of the returning prisoners of war and lots more.

    This book provides a snapshot of life in a rural parish in the Great War, which would have been similar to many villages and towns in the country. Full of information about local children, men and women this book is a must for anyone who would like to find out what happneed to the ordinary person in the Great War. £6.00

  • Mediaeval Mishaps and Mayhem

    Mediaeval Mishaps And Mayhem in Eaton Socon Parish (2013)

    A unique booklet with real stories and real people researched from mediaeval documents. Read about Eaton Socon’s Norman castle, Bushmead Priory, murder on the Kings Highway, the drowning of Robert Fisher, the Leper Hospital and lots more. Illustrated by wonderful drawings by primary school children from Bushmead school, this booklet is a must for life in mediaeval Eaton Socon parish. £2.50

  • The Eatons Then And Now

    The Eatons Then And Now, vol 1 (2012)

    Recent and historic photographs show how the area has changed and detailed descriptions explain each photograph. These books are designed for past and present residents to discover how the Eatons have evolved.

    Volume 1 includes views from the church tower, views near the White Horse, the Old Sun, Thornton’s shop, the George and Dragon, the Health Centre Corner (Bradshaws Corner), Duloe Windmill, the Union Workhouse, the Rose and Crown, the Eaton Socon Methodist Chapel, and the development of various bungalows and houses in Eaton Socon and Eaton Ford. £5.00

  • The Eatons Then And Now 2

    The Eatons Then And Now, vol 2 (2013)

    Recent and historic photographs show how the area has changed and detailed descriptions explain each photograph. These books are designed for past and present residents to discover how the Eatons have evolved.

    Volume 2 includes photographs of several village signs, Brewery Cottages and Eaton Socon Brewery, the Texaco Garage, White Horse Yard, The Wheatsheaf Public House, Townsends bakery, shops on Eaton Socon Village Green and views of Ackerman Street, May Day celebrations, Andersons Butchers, the Scout Hut in Eaton Ford and the development of various houses and bungalows throughout the Eatons. £5.00

  • The Eatons Then And Now 2

    The Eatons Then And Now, vol 3 (2017)

    Recent and historic photographs show how the area has changed and detailed descriptions explain each photograph. These books are designed for past and present residents to discover how the Eatons have evolved.

    Volume 3 in the series includes photographs of the area where the new shops have been built and of the archaeological finds, the Old Plough, School Lane, Chapel Cottages, the Great North Road near the Black Horse and the White Lion, the Health Centre corner, Duloe Road, Crosshall Road and the development of various houses and bungalows throughout the Eatons. £5.00


  • Trails around the Eatons (revised in 1998)

    A very popular book with four trails around the two villages. Find out more about various buildings and people while taking a stroll in the summer sun, or dashing between the showers! Snippets of history in the accompanying book reveal more about the history of our villages. Read about the union workhouse, the schools, the farms and many more buildings of interest. £3.00

Eatons Life

  • To the Glorious Memory (2010)

    Ever wanted to know more about the men listed on the Eaton Socon War Memorial, then this book is for you. This book contains information on more than 120 soldiers, and what happened to their families before and after the two World Wars. £9.95

  • Eaton Socon at Work

    First printed in the 1980's this booklet describes the life and times of several characters who worked in the Eatons in the 1930's. Read about the wheelwright, the headmaster, the nurse, the miller, the blacksmith and other characters fondly remembered by the older residents. £2.50

  • Eaton Socon in Character

    First printed in the 1980's this booklet provides more information on village people in the 1930's. £2.50

  • Recalling The Great Fire of 1930

    In June 2007 the Church celebrated 75 years of its rebuilding and rededication in June 1932 after the disastrous fire that destroyed the church in February 1930. For the celebration the fire booklet was revised with new pictures and more information. £3.00

  • The Eatons At War (1995)

    This book has proved useful to primary age children, secondary age students and adults interested in the past. Brief descriptions are given of wars that affected the Eatons before the twentieth century eg. the Civil War and the Castle Hills area. Maps show how the Eatons were in the First and Second World Wars and local residents memories help to bring the Eatons alive during these periods. £2.50

  • The River in the Eatons

    The river has played an important role in the life of Eatons throughout history. Find out about navigation, the River Mill, skating, boating, fishing, swimming and the flooding. New sections include the Lock Keeper, bridges, the 1998 floods and lots of new diagrams and maps. £3.00

  • Inns and Outs of the Eatons

    Inns and Outs of the Eatons (2015)

    Now in its third edition and completely revised to reflect a period of very rapid change, this book includes more than 20 past and present pubs of Eaton Ford and Eaton Socon. There are descriptions of the pubs, lists of tenants and owners, and all kinds of interesting snippets of information. It also includes the change of some buildings into pubs, eg. the River Mill and the farmhouse at Crosshall. £6.00

  • The Ways and Wherefores of the Eatons

    This book charts the development of the villages of Eaton Ford and Eaton Socon, and the smaller hamlets of Crosshall Ford, Crosshall, Maltmans Green and Little End. Maps show the steady growth of the settlements in the last two hundred years and the rapid expansion in the last thirty years. The origins of road names, both old and new, are given along with the changes in road names. £3.00

  • A Year in the Life of the Eatons 1992

    A snapshot year in the life of the Eatons. Find out about events that shaped the life of the residents in Eaton Ford and Eaton Socon. Read about peoples lives in the villages in 1992. £2.50

Complete Streets and Hamlets

  • Great North Rd Pt 1 - Texaco Garage to Nelson Road (Howard and Wrights Mill to Bunny Lane)

    Find out about The White Horse, The Eagle, The Plough, Eaton Socon Brewery, Howard and Wrights Mill and Whiteheads Toy Factory. Learn more about the Hobson family, a staunch church going family who once owned nearly all the property on the west side of the Great North Rd and who built York Cottages to hide the Chapel. Learn also about Bedlow, a police sergeant in Biggleswade who bought up property in Eaton Socon and whose family owned them for over 100 years. £7.50

  • Great North Rd Pt 2 - Nelson Road (Bunny Lane) to Andersons Butchers.

    This area was the centre of the village and had the village shops such as general stores, drapers, sweet shops, butchers, blacksmiths, a taxi service and hairdressers. Find out about The Wheatsheaf, The Old Sun, Drakes Post Office, Cotton and Bamfords and the Telephone Exchange. Learn about the influence that William Law had during the nineteenth century, and about the vicars who lived in the new vicarage and enlarged their garden. Find out about Charles Dickens' stay in Eaton Socon when he found the Cock Pub full one night and so slept in the house opposite. £7.50

  • Great North Rd Pt 3, Waggon & Horses - Bushmead Rd

    Find out about the Waggon and Horses, Black Horse, White Lion, Hillyard's Grocers, Ushers Shop, Ingle's Coachbuilders, Eaton Socon Co-op. Learn more about the Wilkinson family, Col. Pank, Ratts Close, Livett's Ladies School, the sweet shops and the police houses. £7.50

  • Great North Rd Pt 4, Bushmead Rd - George & Dragon

    Find out about The George and Dragon, the blacksmith's families, Wall's Butchers shop, Field Cottage, Rose Cottage and the Sunny Smile factory. Learn more about Bushmead School, the pre-fabs in Beauchamp Close and the renumbering of houses in Queens Gardens. £7.50

  • Little End: The Life of a Hamlet in Eaton Socon Parish (2002)

    Ever wanted to know exactly where your ancestors lived? If they lived at Little End after 1800 then you could find a description of the house and where the house stood. This booklet charts the development of the Little End hamlet from 1800 and records some of the highlights of its life. £3.50

  • Cross Hall Ford Hamlet: The Osborne Empire (2003)

    The second booklet based on a hamlet as part of a large historical project in the Eatons. This booklet charts the development of Cross Hall Hamlet, based around the Barley Mow public house in Eaton Ford. Find out what effect the Osborne family had on the area. Did your family live nearby? £4.00

  • Maltmans Gardens: Home of the Basket Weavers (2004)

    The third booklet in this series charts the development of Maltmans Gardens - a hamlet based around the Health Centre corner. Find out about the Union Workhouse, Maltmans Villa and Maltmans Cottages, the Rod yard and the local beerhouses. This booklet includes all the older houses from 2 - 110 and 5 - 71 St Neots Rd, and from 273 - 287 and 254 - 288 Great North Rd. £7.50

  • Eaton Ford: The Millers and the Masons (2005)

    The fourth booklet in this series charts the development of the hamlet of Eaton Ford based around Eaton Ford Green. Find out about Ford House, Weir Head Cottages, the farms, the stonemasons business and the millers up Windmill Hill. This booklet includes all the older houses from 116 - 174 and 73 - 111 St Neots Rd, Eaton Ford Green, Mill Hill Rd, 323- 401 and 370 - 378 Great North Rd and Duloe Rd. £7.50

  • Cross Hall ; Farmers, Lemonade and Golf (2006)

    The fifth booklet in this series charts the development of Cross Hall, a hamlet based around the 'Eaton Oak' and Cross Hall Manor. Find out about Sharpes Barns, the lemonade factory, St Neots Golf Club and the Trimmings island in the river. This booklet includes all the top part of Cross Hall Rd, the Crosshall Schools to Dirt House on the Great North Rd and Sharpes Barns. £6.00

  • Eaton Socon - The Village Lanes (2007)

    The sixth booklet in this series charts the developement of the lanes in the centre of Eaton Socon - Ackerman Street, School Lane and Peppercorn Lane as well as The Falcon, The Cock and the Manor House. The booklet also includes the Cage, the Shool. the River Mill and the Glove Factory. £8.00

Censuses and Registers

  • Eaton Socon School Admission Registers 1910-1965

    This book lists over four thousand names of children who are listed in the admission registers for Eaton Socon School. £3.50

  • St Mary's Churchyard Inscriptions c1400-1999

    This book gives details of over 600 inscriptions on gravestones and inside the church, including some that were destroyed in the church fire of 1930. Read all about the famous admiral's brother, the children who were hit by lightning and a certain gentleman who was obviously well liked for his parties. £7.50

  • St Mary's Burial Registers 1813-2002

    The register of all burials carried out at the church. Download (physical copies sold out)

  • Eaton Socon Cemetery c1930-2019

    A list of over 1300 people buried in the cemetery together with maps and memorial inscriptions. Download (physical copies sold out)

  • Censuses 1841-1901

    All the censuses carried out in Eaton Socon where individuals were recorded. £4.00 per volume

  • Electoral Registers 1925-1965

    Electoral registers from 1925, 1930, 1095, 1938, 1945, 1947, 1950, 1955, 1960 and 1965. £3.00 per volume