Our History

A timeline of Snaith and Cowick

Official Calendar



The form and character of Snaith & Cowick has been shaped over the centuries through its main role as a market and trade centre for the surrounding countryside from the mediaeval period until the twentieth century.

The most dominating landmark is the Priory Church of St. Lawrence. Snaith is also famous for the Old Mill Brewery and its narrow York-like streets. The Rivers Don and Aire run close to the town, and Snaith was a busy and important port in mediaeval times with a harbour and a ferry.


The Ice Age ends leaving Lake Humber covering the area of North Lincolnshire to Selby covered with water. This slowly drains away.

8,000 – 4,000BC
Climate improvement allows trees to colonise the area. Man begins cultivating the area.

Roman maps show that no roads crossed our area because of the boggy conditions.

The Doomsday Book was produced indicating that Cowick was a royal possession, with a hunting lodge on the edge of Hatfield Chase and was not taxable.

Building work commences on Snaith Priory Church.

1200 – 1300AD
Cowick used for hunting by the Kings of England.

Snaith was granted a charter to hold markets and fairs. The Charter was read annually over the church wall until 1934.

Edward II held parliament at Cowick.

John of Gaunt spent his honeymoon at Cowick.

The Old Grammar School built, the first school building in Snaith.

Cornelius Vermuyden starts to drain Hatfield Chase with the permission of Charles I. He was later knighted by the king.

1660 – 1690AD
Viscount Downe leases Cowick from the crown and builds the present Cowick Hall.

An Act of Parliament was passed to allow the construction of the Aire and Calder Navigation System, to carry heavy goods including coal to the river, before Goole became a Town.

An Act of Parliament was passed to allow Thomas Stapleton of Carlton to build the Carlton Toll Bridge over the River Aire at a cost of £1,850.

The Snaith Enclosure Award was made, allowing landowners to enclose large areas of what had been common and open land for their own agricultural use.

First census of Snaith took place.

The building of Cowick Church and School were completed by the Lord Downe.

Snaith Agricultural Show started. It was held in Snaith Park.

Snaith Methodist Church is completed.

Snaith Commando started to celebrate the end of the Boer War. This was a carnival and parade, usually mounted often on bicycles, with people dressed up. It ran until the First World War and the parade went out as far as Rawcliffe.

The new bridge over the River Aire was built to replace the Toll Bridge at a cost of £65,000.

Cowick Hall was purchased by Croda International and restored to as we see it today.

M62 Motorway built.



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