Wadenho (xi cent.); Wadenhowe (xii cent.); Waddenhoo, Wandenhœ (xiii–xvii cent.).
The parish of Wadenhoe is bounded on the southeast by the River Nene, near to which the land is lowlying, being only some 80 ft. above the ordnance datum. The ground rises, however, to the north-west, where it reaches 258 ft. near Wadenhoe Great Wood. The surface soil is clay and the subsoil is Oxford clay, cornbrash and Great Oolite. The parish comprises 1,199 acres. It was inclosed by Act of Parliament in 1793. (fn. 1)
The village stands on rising ground near to the River Nene, a little way off the high road from Islip and Aldwinkle to Oundle. The church is in an isolated position to the south-west of the village on high ground overlooking the river. On the opposite side of the village is the Old Rectory, sold to G. Ward Hunt and occupied by Capt. W. Ward Hunt, R.N., D.S.O., as the rector resides at Pilton, the living of which he holds with that of Wadenhoe. Wadenhoe House, the property of G. Ward Hunt, is a 17th century building with modern additions standing in extensive grounds. At a farm-house in the village is a circular stone dovecote with conical roof and louvred turret. A reservoir adjoins the Oundle Road and there were formerly some quarries in the parish, which are now no longer worked. No railway crosses the parish, the nearest railway station being at Thorpe on the London Midland and Scottish Railway.
John Palsgrave, tutor to Henry Fitzroy, natural son of Henry VIII, was rector here from 1545 to 1554. (fn. 2)Samuel Parr, the educationist and political writer, became rector in 1789 by exchange with Dr. Bridges, but apparently never resided in the parish.
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