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Conservation Area History

Barrow Conservation Area

The village has a substantial conservation area including a large number of significant buildings, many of which are described in the Village Trails.

The following description of the village comes from a publication (c1990) from Glanford Borough Council (precursor to the North Lincolnshire Unitary Authority).


Conservation Areas are designated for those parts of towns or villages which are considered as having a special character or appearance that it would be desirable to keep and improve.

In Barrow-upon-Humber, a conservation area was first designated in 1974. This was extended in 1986.

One of the largest parishes in North Lincolnshire, covering 5,000 acres and including within its boundaries visible evidence of its medieval importance – the imposing site of a Norman motte and bailey castle and the remains of a market cross – and of its phenomenal population growth in the 19th century in the separate township of New Holland, first coming to notice with the ferry to Hull and growing markedly with the building of the dock and railway in 1847-48.

The network of the present pattern of fields and roads within the parish was laid down at and by enclosure in the years 1797-1803. The pattern deserves attention as a journey from New Holland right through the parish to its tip at Black Moulds will reveal history on the ground both in the typical straight enclosure roads and in the rectangular fields with quickset (hawthorn) hedges, created 1797-1803.

The central areas of the village provide evidence of past prosperity, of noted population growth and of the religious and secular activities and enterprises of the population. The High Street provides visible history of the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries. See the finely restored Papist Hall for the 17th century; look at the gable ends of many dwellings to appreciate single-storey 18th century cottages raised to become newly-fashionable two-storey 19th century houses. Here are the former Primitive Methodist Chapel of 1834, the present Methodist chapel of 1868 and the (former) Foresters’ Hall of 1864.

The former vicarage of 1805 stands west of the prominently sited medieval church of Holy Trinity. Past the ‘island’ lies the reputed site of St Chad’s Anglo-Saxon monastery and before entering Cherry Lane can be noted Down Hall, once the residence of a basket manufacturer. The growing of osiers and the making of baskets and other basketry articles (perambulators, for example) was important in Barrow from about 1840 to 1914. The labour of women and children was considered essential. Mt James Barrick told a Royal Commission in 1866: “I employ 100 children in osier peeling. Probably 250 are so employed in Barrow. It begins on 10th April and lasts five or six weeks. The parents break the peel, the children take it off. They are paid 6d a bundle. A woman and with a child will do from four to six bundles a day.”

(Original information from A G Robson, at that time the Planning Officer, with historical detail from local historian, Rex Russell)

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