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December, 2017

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We were recently in Barrow-upon-Soar when visiting relatives.

It is a fairly large village between Leicester and Loughborough with a population of 5,856 in the 2011 census. In the Domesday Book it shows the name ‘Barhoo’ derived from ‘Barrow, meaning a burial place. It has had various spellings over time.

The village is famous for a plesiosaur excavated there in 1851 …..the species Rhomaleosaurus megacephalus, nicknamed the “Barrow Kipper”. It was found in a lime pit outside the village and a roundabout with a sign representing its skeleton lies at the centre of the village.

Lying on the east bank of the River Soar, the village is on the Midland Main Line.
It is a very interesting place where you can delve back in history. For example, a Mrs Dilks made ice cream along with her son in the cottages at 5 Cotes Road. They used fresh full milk from Sanders Farm and it was sold from a tricycle.
At one time a sweet shop could be found in the front room of some cottages opposite the boathouse – now the Riverside Inn.

In 1867 and 1874 remains of a Roman Cemetery was found, adjacent to Sileby Road, Skeletons, urns, glass vessels etc., were found when digging for limestone.
In the late 19th century, two large factories were processing raw limestone.

We visited the Holy Trinity Church Christmas Tree Festival which was a great experience. 86 Christmas Trees were on display, all individually decorated by local tradesmen and communities. It was wonderful to see local people come together and create such a community spirit. There was an entrance fee of £2 for adults, with a raffle, tea and cakes also available.
A short distance outside the church stands the Barrow Roundhouse – built in 1827 for the purpose of a ‘lock-up.’

Must go back and delve into some more history – great visit!

Caroline Hutchings

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