A window on our Victorian past

The Stratford Herard


The 1861 census gives us a window onto the mid-Victorian age. The Industrial Revolution had transformed Britain, and yet much of the country was still rural with a high dependency on agriculture for employment.


 You may be surprised to learn that this was also the case in Bidford even though it was situated right on the edge of the Industrial Revolution heartlands.


How astonished the Bidford inhabitants of 1861 would be if they saw the way of life of today’s villagers!








Their world was essentially local – they were all employed in or around the village, mainly in agricultural occupations, and they rarely left Bidford as the railway had yet to reach the area.

Travel back with us to the Bidford of 1861 through the census of that year which captures an era long gone……..

 Bidford in 1861

Turning hay in Marriage      Meadows          

PH21/61, img:8236 (3/7490)

Bridge over the Avon, with the White Lion pub 

PH 21/6, img:8210 (3/7465)            

Old Icknield Street   

PH350/11, img:523 (3/522)            

Photographs used courtesy of Warwickshire County Record Office