Weedon

Weedon lies about half a mile to the east of the road from Aylesbury to Buckingham, about three miles north of Aylesbury. Some 350 people live in the village, in 140 houses, the oldest probably being the Manor farmhouse, which carries several dates in the 1640s on its walls. Several families have lived in Weedon for many generations; the Fleets for 200 or so years, the Finchers for upwards of a hundred.
By the main crossroads is the tiny village green, and Five Elms Inn, which is thatched like several of its neighbours. Beside the Five Elms a lane called Stockaway leads to the village pond.

Although the name Weedon means 'A place of heathen worship' the village has the distinction of having been the location of the first place in Buckinghamshire licensed for Methodist services, and John Wesley himself is said to have preached from a mound near the crossroads. Now there is a Methodist church, and a dedicated sanctuary in part of the Old Schoolroom, where Anglican services are regularly held. There are some traces of monastic ruins in the grounds of the Lilies to the north west of the village, but there is no material evidence to support the legend that there was once a convent called the Roses at the south east end, in the grounds of Weedon Lodge.

In the mid-19th century Lord Nugent, younger brother of the Duke of Buckingham lived in the Lilies, and it is rumoured that in his time the local militia used to march from a row of cottages still locally known as the Barracks, to be drilled on the Lilies lawn. Although the house was rebuilt in 1870, the fleur-de-lys has been retained in the porch as a reminder that Louis Philippe was expected to spend his years of exile from France there, but he went to another house near Aylesbury.

In the 19th century the village was almost self-supporting. Most of the men worked on the farms or at the Lilies, and the women and girls worked as domestics or as lace makers and straw plaiters for hats. There was a baker, a butcher, a blacksmith, bricklayers and carpenters, and a tailor, and there were several small shops. Nowadays apart from farmers and farm workers, most people travel to Aylesbury or further afield to work.

Article written by members of the Buckinghamshire Federation of Women's Institutes for the publication "The Buckinghamshire Village Book" (1987) and reproduced here with their permission