Stoke Bruerne is well known as a Canal Centre with a Waterways Museum and other facilities within the village including Primary School, Public Houses and Restaurants. Secondary education is provided at the nearby village of Roade. Leisure facilities in the area include racing at Towcester, motor racing at Silverstone and golf at Collingtree, Silverstone, and West Park, Whittlebury. www.stokebruerne.org.uk
Stoke Bruerne is mentioned in the Domesday Book in 1086 as "Stoche" meaning "an outlying farmstead or hamlet". The form "Stokbruer" is used in 1254 being a suffix by the "Briwere" family of the Manor House. The village is fairly typical for this area of south Northamptonshire containing many traditional stone and thatched cottages. The village's main claim to fame is its situation on the Grand Union Canal making it a favourite destination for tourists. The population is split 196 male and 199 female in 169 households (2001 census). The parish is part of Tove Ward, named after the River Tove, of the district council of South Northamptonshire. The nearby country estate of Stoke Park along Shutlanger Road is occasionally open to the public in August, but all that remains of the main house are the two east and west wings known as Stoke Park Pavilions. In December 2008, the conservation project won the East Midlands' Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) Award, alongside Foxton Locks, another major canal restoration project in Leicestershire, near Market Harborough.
The village is home to The Waterways Trust's canal museum (part of the National Waterways Museum), housed in a restored corn mill at the top of a flight of canal locks. The museum vividly tells the story of Britain's inland waterways and the people who worked on them. It provides a fascinating insight into the transport system which was fundamental to the industrial revolution in Britain. There are working models and 3-D displays including a model of the short-lived inclined-plane mechanical lift at Foxton in Leicestershire. About half a mile north of the village is the south portal of Blisworth tunnel - accessible by a walk along the old towpath (on the eastern side of the canal - north of the village, the western side is either private property or inaccessible.) The tunnel is 3,056 yards (2,794 m) long and is one of the longest in the UK.
There are two canalside public houses, 'The Boat Inn', http://www.boatinn.co.uk and 'The Navigation', http://www.marstonstaverns.co.uk/tavern-home both serving a variety of meals and drinks. There is a restaurant/takeaway, 'The Spice of Bruerne' http://spiceofbruerne.com various bed and breakfast facilities and tearooms. The village attracts many visitors all year round and especially during the summer months. A variety of boat trips may be booked from the canalside. Most of the time there is plenty of activity on the canal with boats going through the locks regularly and plenty going in and out of the tunnel.
The village has a cricket club. Its ground is named after the late George Edward Tarry who donated the field to the village in the late 20th century. The pavilion is dedicated to his wife Elizabeth Fay Tarry, who died in the late 1960s.
Conservation area consultation
In November 2007 the area of the village and surroundings, including Stoke Park, were the subject of an extensive conservation consultation by South Northants Council. Extensive additional documentation, including maps, pictures and historical documentation, is available from the South Northants Council's Planning website.
Many public footpaths cross the area around Stoke Bruerne. One such walk, taking in Grafton Regis, was the subject of a Daily Telegraph article. Other walks in and around Northampton are mentioned in the County Council Right of way site.
Stoke Bruerne had its own railway station, part of the Stratford-upon-Avon and Midland Junction Railway (SMJR) and misnamed Stoke Bruern. This ran close to the village over Blisworth tunnel near the south portal. The former railway station has been converted to a private house and is along the road to Blisworth just outside the village. The line of the railway is still visible and the Blisworth road has a railway bridge still in position near the former station. The railway ran east to join the West Coast Main Line and then into Bedfordshire.
The village appears, with Blisworth, in the Ealing Studios film Painted Boats (1945), filmed at the end of World War II and directed by Charles Crichton whose notable sucessess include The Lavender Hill Mob (1951) and A Fish Called Wanda (1988).
For more than 60 years Silverstone has carved its mark as one of the leading motorsport venues, creating a powerful heritage around the world. Internationally renowned as the host of world class events, Silverstone is also famed for its exhilarating driving experiences, sumptuous corporate entertainment and prestigious conference facilities.
With a recent investment of over £7.5million into the course and its facilities, Towcester Racecourse and Conference Centre, set in beautiful parkland overlooking the rolling Northamptonshire countryside, is truly one of the most picturesque racing venues in the country. Towcester Racecourse, one of Northampton shire’s most scenic venues offers beautiful parkland views and award winning stands that offer both style and elegance.
Towcester Leisure Centre
Towcester Centre for Leisure where you can swim, ride the flumes, surf the waves and work out all under one roof. The wide range of activities available ensures there is something for you - whatever your age or ability. Choose to train in the Competition Pool, learn to swim with a course of Swim Life swimming lessons, or simply make a splash in the Leisure Pool.
Whittlebury Golf Course
The prestigious Clubhouse of the Year Award 2007 was presented to Whittlebury Park Golf & Country Club at the annual awards ceremony held by the Mirror Publishing Group at The Warwickshire Golf Club in September 2007.
Stoke Bruerne C of E Primary School
Northants. NN12 7SD
Headteacher: Mr J Zakis
Stoke Bruerne C. of E. Primary School
The Elisabeth Woodville School, Roade
People and relationships are at the heart of all that they do. Experiences outcomes and preparation for a life well lived at the heart of all the discussions, planning and actions. They aim to create an environment where the students are happy and secure, grow in self-confidence, thrive academically. They want the students to leave us well-prepared for future study, successful employment and able to play a full and confident part in society both locally and globally.