Sunday, July 24 2016

Welcome to the Great Bowden Village Website

Sutton Road Great Bowden

The beautiful village of Great Bowden lies on the edge of the Welland Valley and has a past history dating back to Anglo Saxon times.

Great Bowden still enjoys a village way of life and to this day has retained itself by largely remaining within its ancient boundaries. Surrounded by attractive countryside and separation of settlements land, Great Bowden has a unique relationship with its larger neighbour, Market Harborough.

The village’s picturesque centre consists of beautiful greens, shops, pubs, the village hall and our historic church.

Dingley Road Great Bowden

Great Bowden has an active Parish Council, a variety of services, a host of clubs/groups, a pre-school and a primary school.

If you would like to know more about the history of Great Bowden and its Heritage, please visit the Groups page. The Historical Society or Archaeological & Heritage Group can provide a wealth of information.

Please view the current Newsletter-2016-SUMMER   which includes articles and news items from local residents.

Great Bowden Events Calendar

Select event for venue & further information. If you'd like an event added please tell us about it here.


News & Information


Dedicated Gardening tips page


Great Bowden Village Questionnaire


If you are a resident or a stakeholder (business or landowner) please do help us with the Village Neighbourhood Plan by completing the following questionnaire.

Either print our or complete it online at

please do complete the questionnaire asap.

Thank you


Theme Groups

Thank you to those who came to the open meeting to launch the Theme Groups for the Neighbourhood Plan at the Community Pavilion.

The Theme groups will be:

We would like volunteers to attend between 3 and 5 meetings in total, These meetings will be held in September and October. There will be experienced mentors in each group and a member of the GBPN committee. We will then prepare the draft document at the end of the year.

Your information, support and input could help shape planning policy for Great Bowdens' future.

If you wish to help, please call Natalie on 01858 432658.

















Bowden Ridge Research


This is a new project for Great Bowden Heritage & Archaeology and is the story of the long hill that runs from Leicester Road and the canal in the west and north to the railway line in the east, and is still mainly open land. 

A lot is already known and pre development survey work, and our own excavations have yielded evidence that this hillside was occupied by the Iron Age people and then extensively during the Roman period.  Did you know there was a settlement, possibly a little township on the top of the ridge around the east end of The Ridgeway?  Hundreds of sherds of Roman pottery and some coins have been found over the years.

And then during the Medieval period and up to the Enclosure of the fields in 1776 these were Bowden’s Fields farmed under the open field system forming individual ridges and furrows much of which is still visible in this area of pasture.

The canal and the railway made huge changes in the 19th century and much of the area filled up with housing during the 20th century.  Although most of the buildings old or new are around the perimeter of the area of study.  

The largest building by far was the Market Harborough Workhouse, most of which was demolished in 1975.   This filled the grassed area in front of St Lukes Hospital and served 41 parishes.  After the workhouse system finished in 1930 the building became a geriatric hospital and even as late as the 1980s part of it still remained and was used as a base for Market Harborough Opportunities Programme, a scheme to help unemployed people get back to work.    We would love to hear from anyone who has memories of the workhouse or the later use of the building.  Please get in touch through our website:

And, do you remember a beacon on the hill at the top of Burnmill Road, near the reservoir.  The symbol for a lighthouse appears on the 1954 OS map but it was probably a beacon guiding aircraft to the airfield near to Gartree prison.  Has anyone got a photo?  Or some personal memories?  Were there any other beacons on the hill?

Put together these small historical memories create a picture of the past that we can leave for future generations and the Heritage Group will make sure that everything is archived and also made available to everyone.

Please help

Great Bowden Heritage & Archaeology








Keep up to date with local groups and contacts via Facebook


Great Bowden Parish Council


Great Bowden Village Festival

Bowden Cricket Club

Great Bowden Heritage & Archaeology

Great Bowden Visual Arts

Oakley School of Dancing

Louise Humphrey Pilates

Great Bowden Pre-school

Weltons   and  Nicky at Weltons

Boxercise at the village hall

Shoulder of Mutton

Red Lion

St Peter & St Paul Church

Great Bowden Music Festival




Great Bowden Arts Club

We are a friendly club whose objects are ‘The enjoyment and support of the arts’. 

We have monthly visits to plays, operas, ballets, concerts and other events. 

The annual subscription is £3.00 per person, for this members receive 3 to 4 newsletters with details of the up and coming outings.

Could anyone interested in receiving the next newsletter contact me, Muriel Bibby on 01858 465793.

Our next outings are:

Saturday 4th June 14:40 (matinee) - “Flowers for Mrs Harris”, Crucible, Sheffield; we will leave The Green at 09:00 to give time for a look around Sheffield and lunch before the performance.  Book by 4th June

Wednesday 13th July, 19:00 - “Falstaff”, CBSO, Symphony Hall; we will leave The Green at 16:45.  Book by 10th May

Tuesday 29th November, 19.30 - “Professor Brian Cox Live”, Milton Keynes Theatre; we will leave The Green at 17:00.  Book by 20th April.





50 Homes plan is passed by Harborough District Council planning committee.

on Fields along Welham Lane


Dear Resident,

You may have heard that Harborough District Council's Planning Committee approved this application last Tuesday at the planning meeting held at the council offices much to the dismay of the Great Bowden residents who attended the meeting!

Seven residents presented objections at the meeting:
Sarah Sutton who spoke about the adverse effects to the rural and historical character of Great Bowden.
Anne French who spoke about the adverse effects to the environment.
Peter Mitchell who spoke about the development being outside the limits of development for Great Bowden
Peter Brewin who spoke about the traffic problems in the village that would be caused by the development
David Wall who spoke about the fact that Welham Lane is not suitable for a significant increase in traffic.
Michelle Daniels, who courageously spoke at very short notice, on behalf of Natalie Holmes, who had lost her voice, on the fact that Great Bowden school can't take any more pupils
Michael Jack who spoke about the fact that the development was against local and national planning policies
The Parish Council was represented by Paul Claxton who presented the Council's objections and our local councillors, Sarah Hill and Barry Champion who also presented objections.

Despite these representations the  approval was given even with the valid 157 objections that were sent to HDC and the 213 residents who signed the petition against this proposed development.

It brings into even sharper focus that the only way to preserve our village is to press ahead at full speed with the neighbourhood plan!







LRWT  Great Bowden Local Group


Spring/Summer Events

Tues 7th June - a mini coach trip to Wicken Fen, the N.T.'s first nature reserve. A N.T. guide will show us around on arrival. The rest of the time is yours. Boat trips may be available, there is a visitor centre to look around, an old fen cottage to explore and walks of many different lengths. There is a café and toilets on site. The cost of the coach and guided tour is £20 payable to Tim Banks.

Tues 14th June - an afternoon visit to Lyveden New Bield. A guided walk with a warden through the meadows, some not normally open to the general public, to view the summer flowers, butterflies, dragonflies, etc. Cost £2 per person payable on the day. N.B. if you're NOT a N.T. member there will also be a £6.50 entrance fee. There is a café and toilets there. If a nice day you could lunch there or take a picnic prior to the guided walk. To book please contact Anne French on 01858 432203 or email her on

Weds 22nd June  - a 7 o'clock evening visit to Julia Hawley's dairy farm at Brentingby, near Melton Mowbray, to witness first hand their practices of farming for wildlife. Note there are no refreshments available here.


Bruce White, Chairman, tel: 01858 467976 email:

Gerald Mitchell, Village Recorder, tel: 01858 462393 email:

7.30 pm in the Village Hall
Entrance fees (include refreshments) £2 for Wildlife Trust members £3 non-members


Senior Fitcamp with Invictus Training

Fitness and Flexibility for over 55’s

Come and join us for an hour of Fitness, Flexibility and Fun!

Senior Fitcamp is a great way for over 55’s to improve or maintain their fitness and flexibility and is suitable for all abilities and fitness levels, including beginners.

Fitcamp is a circuit training class. Participants complete a series of exercises in a sequence, designed to give the whole body a work out. By combining Cardio Vascular and Resistance training, the circuit will improve your fitness, and strengthen and tone your muscles.

After the circuit there is a flexibility training session, where a series of maintenance and development stretches are performed to help keep your muscles and joints supple and flexible.

A programme of regular exercise can potentially improve your health in so many ways.

The benefits include:-

Senior Fitcamp is much more than a Keep fit class. It is also a great way to meet friends and enjoy a post workout tea or coffee. Your REPS accredited instructor will be on hand to talk about any Health, Nutrition and Fitness related matters and offer advice and guidance.

 If you have concerns about exercising, please speak to your Doctor first.

Senior Fitcamp every Tuesday 11:15am – 12:15 in Great Bowden Village Hall

Only £5 per session, price includes complimentary tea and coffee.

For more information, please contact-

Or visit our website - or phone 07850 468234






New Opportunities to Keep Fit in Great Bowden

Boxercise - Circuit Training - Bootcamps

I started classes at the village hall in Great Bowden in February this year after running successful evening classes in market Harborough since July 2014. 

Monday mornings it is Strength & Tone Circuits class which is an all over body workout using body weight exercises, weights, resistance and cardio. During the 45 minute class there is also a HIIT (high intensity interval training) section which is great for burning maximum calories and also a core workout and stretches.

Friday mornings it's time to beat away the stress of the week at Boxercise! This is a workout like no other, you're using the techniques boxers use to train without any of the sparring. A typical session will include learning the punches and defence moves with instruction of combinations of these, fitness drills, games and tabatta training. The 45 minute long class is aimed at all levels of fitness, all ages and abilities, male or female, it's really for everyone! There's no need to bring a partner or even boxing gloves or pads as these are all provided. 

Also, hot off the press, is my new Summer Body 8 Week Challenge, an all-in package running from now until the end of July which includes classes, boot camps at Great Bowden recreation ground, 1-on-1 session and a home workout plan all for £45, saving over £20!

Juliet Sterland   07917 291072








New group in Great Bowden

The Sunflower Relaxation Classes
Are you stressed? Feeling anxious? Struggling to sleep?
The Sunflower relaxation classes will help you calm your mind, release the stresses of the day and aid your well-being. Relax with gentle movement, breathing techniques and guided visualisations.     

Classes now booking for ~
Wednesdays  - 2nd & 4th of each month at 7.00 till 8.30 pm
Thursdays at 12.15 till 1.15 pm
Places are limited so to book your place, or enquire about the classes, please call Simon on 01858 414 269 or email






Attention all dog owners


It is apparent that dog fouling is becoming an increasing issue in several areas of the village, particularly the Recreation Ground.  Several dog owners have even reported it to the Parish Council on the basis that it reflects badly on all of them. This cannot be allowed to continue unchecked, especially in areas frequented by children. 

You should be aware that Harborough District Council is now aware of the issue; the Dog Warden and Environmental Health Officers will be patrolling the village.

Although people mainly accept that they should clear up after their dog there are a few that don't. Everyone who doesn't clear up after their dog is allowing the streets and parks of Bowden to look unsightly.  There are potentially serious health issues too, particularly for children.

The Dogs (Fouling of Land) Act 1996

If you fail to clear up after your dog in one of the designated areas you will have committed an offence under the Dogs (Fouling of Land) Act 1996.  If a Council Officer witnesses you failing to clean up after your dog, you should be aware that a Magistrate's Court may impose a fine of up to £1,000.

Further details are available on the HDC website

Great Bowden Parish Council






Great Bowden Historical Society

Web Site



Great Bowden Heritage & Archaeology
Web site



Garden Society - Show Information Page









Great Bowden - Looking out for all - Neighbourhood Watch

If you see anyone who you think is acting suspicious or vehicles in the village that seem unusual please do call, Crime prevention on 0116 222 2222 or by visiting the Force
website at

If the sighting is of an innocent nature it can be validated. Being vigilant can stop crime.




Read all about it!

Since 2003, Great Bowden Heritage and Archaeology Group has been collecting evidence to illustrate the life
and times of the village before the Norman Conquest. We have built a picture from digs, field walking,
metal detection, local records and wider history, compiling three booklets to give you a flavour of the
village in those times.

Free copies have been donated to local schools, but there is a charge to the public to contribute towards printing costs.

£2.50 per booklet or a set of three for £5 

Contact Liz Thomas on 01858 466003







A History of Great Bowden School

A very interesting history of our school from 1839-2009 with archive material and photographs leading through to live memories and the present day.

To order a copy please click on the image below to view application form.

Books cost £6 (Book £5.00 + £1.00 P&P)

Great Bowden School - A History 1839 to 2009

All proceeds go to the School and the Great Bowden Historical Society.



Lorries Using Village Centre

It is noticeable that heavy lorries are continuing to use the village as a through-route and in particular ignoring the lorry restriction on Dingley Road. The only way for the village to make an impact on this problem is to complain and the more people that do so the better the effect.

All that is required is to provide in written form to the Police Inspector, MH Police Station is a short note providing:
Date/time of incident
Description of lorry: type / colour of vehicle, owners name and if possible the registration number.
Direction of Travel: from or to Corby
Road being used: particularly Dingley Road




Station Road Great Bowden

View up Station Road

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* Great Bowden Village Festival 2012 - PAGE includes Gallery of events



Electoral Division

The electoral division of Market Harborough East is made up of the following district wards. Market Harborough Great Bowden and Arden ward and Little Bowden ward.

Leicestershire Census 2011 - Key Statistics

(pdf format) Download key statistics for the electoral division. Market Harborough East electoral division  








Documents available to download on this site are saved in PDF format. You will need Adobe Reader to view them. Click the link below to download the software.

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