The Villages of Ulceby and Fordington

The Village Of Ulceby These two villages form the parish known as Ulceby cum Fordington (sometimes "Ulceby near Alford"). This is to distinguish it from another Ulceby in the north of the county.

The village of Ulceby lies on the old Roman Road from Burgh le Marsh to Louth (A1028) and once boasted a Carpenters workshop, a Blacksmith, a Post Office, school and a Methodist Chapel. Now the Chapel is a joiners workshop and the School closed in the 1960's to become a private house.

There is still a brick built Anglican church which stands by the side of a country lane. This was built in 1832 on the site of an earlier thatched church which burnt down. Some restoration was carried out in 1885.

The hamlet of Fordington is the site of an old Roman camp and there are two possible Bronze Age round barrows in the village. Positive identification is difficult as they are surrounded by the remains of the deserted medieval village whose banks, ditches and building foundation mounds can still be clearly seen.

The suspected barrows are identified in James Dyer's book 'Discovering Prehistoric England' and he also speculates that they may have been reused during the medieval period as bases for windmills.

Although Ulceby and Fordington are now united as one parish, this has not always been the case. Like its neighbour Dexthorpe, (now a single farm forming part of the adjoining parish of Dalby), Fordington was badly affected by the Black Death plague of 1349 and its population was greatly reduced. Prior to the coming of the plague, Fordington had been an independent parish complete with its own church, the village having stood in the fields now lying immediately to the South of Fordington House Farm. Clearly the population never recovered from the devastation of the plague for the parish of Fordington was finally merged with that of Ulceby on the 22nd May 1450. According to ecclesiastical records the reason for the merger was "propter raritatem parochianorum pestilenciae causa" - which loosely translated from the Latin means "on account of the shortage of parishioners, due to the plague."

The Round Barrows at Fordington The picture on the left shows an overview of the site of the deserted Fordington village looking east from a minor road that runs close by. The bump to the right of the tree in the centre is one of the possible barrows - the other is somewhere to the left.