Brief History

Gamlingay is one of the largest villages in Cambridgeshire. It is also one of the best recorded. Before the conquest the village is thought to have been centred on the Station road area as Saxon bones from the burial ground were found in the 1980’s.

In 1260 Merton college in Oxford was founded by Walton de Merton who gave the college land in and around Gamlingay, much of which it still owns today.

The village was divided into three manors, Merton, Avenalls and Woodbury to the west. The mediaeval village was situated mostly alone the Cambridge to Bedford road. In 1600 there was a great fire which destroyed the vicarage and many other buildings in the village. In late Stuart times the Sir John Jacobs Almshouses were built for “the poor widows of good character resident in the village of Gamlingay”. These remain in use today. In the 1840’s the First school was built and further terraces in Church St.

In the last 25 years further considerable expansion has taken place with the development of modern housing estates.

Author Jim Brown has written a facinating book, telling the story of the village


  • Gamlingay History Society
  • Gamlingay Photos - A pictorial History of an English Village
  • Gamarch
  • Since 1992, Gamlingay has a very active history society. It exists to celebrate the history of the village, to collect and preserve an archive of relevant historical material and to promote history in general.  The society meets on the second Monday of each month, 7.30pm in Gamlingay Eco Hub, Kier Suite.  Open to all, whether resident in the village or not and everyone will be made most welcome.  For more information visit the very informative website

  • Gamlingay is a village with a very long history and is probably one of the best documented in the country. There’s been a settlement on the site since at least the Bronze Age and there are written records going back to the Saxon period

    There are also hundreds of photographs in existence from the 1890s onwards. The purpose of Gamlingay Photos is to collect & restore as many of these as possible and thus preserve a valuable part of the village history for future generations to enjoy.
    This is an ongoing project and there are lots more photos to come. I’ve separated them into various categories as shown above & to the left. If you have any similar photographs of old Gamlingay that you’d like to contribute to the site, please contact me below. To upload your photos here, all I need to do is scan them into the computer. Scanning will not damage the original photo in any way and takes only a short while, after which they will be returned to you.

    If you can help identify any individuals or have spotted any errors please contact me. If you have any comments, suggestions, questions or complaints contact me by email at or by telephone on 01767 651472 (evenings).


    David Allen (Gamlingay History Society)


  • We are a group of amateurs with a strong interest in Gamlingay’s history and particularly archaeology.   We do, however, have members from other local villages and our interests will extend there.

    Contact and other information about us and what we do can be found on our Membership page.

    For latest news about our group, local archaeology and related events please check out the News page of our website.

    We will add to the website under the various headings at the top of the page,to keep you up to date with our activities including reports and images. Hover over the headings to see list of projects.

    As you can see from our logo above we are affiliated to JIGSAW CAMBRIDGESHIRE who assist local history and archaeological societies in historical research, excavation, artefact identification, recording, and much more.  They provide training, equipment and professional advice and are willing to come out on site with us.

    In 2014 we became members of the Cambridge Antiquarian Society founded in 1840 and now the repository of over 170 years of the local history and archaeology of Cambridgeshire. They are currently digitising their records and are a valuable resource. See Gamlingay Neolithic Site under Articles of Interest above to see a report of the Society’s proceedings in 1911.

    Any comments about the website or anything you would like to see added? – email Webmaster    We reserve the right to refuse any items considered inappropriate for the website.