Part 1: The Parish

King's Sutton rec 1870King’s Sutton is a pretty town,
And lies all in a Valley.
There is a pretty ring of bells,
Besides a bowling alley.
Wine and liquor in good store,
Pretty maidens plenty.
Can a man desire more?
There ain’t such a town in twenty!

This is how a nursery rhyme published by Halliwell in 1760 described the village. Though many changes have taken place over the centuries it is as true today as it was over two hundred years ago.

King’s Sutton is the only village in the parish and has expanded over the years to include the hamlet of Astrop to the East. Other hamlets, such as Purston and Walton, have shrunk in size to little more than farms surrounded by a few houses. The name is given as “Svdtone” in the Domesday Book of 1086 when most of the village was recorded as belonging to the King. It is, however, another two hundred years before the royal connection appears, with the names “Suttun Regis” in 1252 and “Kinges Sutton” in 1294. Sutton means “South Farm”, possibly with reference to Purston in the North of the parish, though there are other suggestions relating to the village’s location in the South of the county.