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Local History

Extract from "The Community & Parish Plan".

The name "Kirby" comes from the name of a Dane, Caeri, who established the community here in the late ninth or early tenth century. The settlement was known as Carbi, and then later Kirby. The village was recorded in the Domesday Book as 'Carbi'. (Caeri's settlement) with a working population of 8. At the time the land in Kirby Muxloe was owned by Hugh de Grandesmaynel and by William Peverel.

In 1461, William Hastings, the 1st Baron Hastings of Hungerford, became the Steward of the Honor of Leicester and Ranger of Leicester Forest. His father, Sir Leonard Hastings, had owned a modest estate in Leicestershire and Gloucestershire, where the family had long been established. On April 14, 1474 Hastings acquired the manorial right to Kirby from the Pakeman family, although he had rented it for some years previous to this. In 1480 he began to build the moated Kirby Muxloe Castle during the period of the Wars of the Roses. However, work on the castle stopped soon after Lord Hastings was executed on June 13, 1483 on the orders of King Richard III at the Tower of London for conspiracy. William was caught up in the rivalry for the throne after the death of Edward IV.

In 1582 the name of village becomes Kirby Muckelby, with variants Mullox, Muckle. About 50 years later in 1628 disafforestation of Leicester Forest occurred, effectively dividing the land near Kirby Muxloe into forest and pasture. The results are visible today. In 1636, the Hastings families sold castle and estates in Kirby and Braunstone to the Winstanley family. The first official use of Kirby Muxloe was used in 1703 in the Oxford Dictionary of Placenames, which states that 'Muxloe' is a family name. There was such a family but they lived three miles away, in the village of Desford.

The railway came to Kirby Muxloe in 1848 when the Midland Railway built a line through Kirby, and on July 1, 1859 Kirby Muxloe railway station opened at Kirby fields. In 1882, the fields known as Far and Near Townsend Close went on to be bought by Kirby Muxloe Land Society. Barwell Road, Castle Road, and Church Road are laid out for the village and building would go on for the next 30 years.

In 1911, Kirby Muxloe Castle was handed over to Ministry of Works, and later English Heritage. Amidst World War II in 1941 the village was heavily bombed.  A German bomber on its way back after attacking Coventry emptied its load on two streets with destruction of a church and several houses. Gaps left in the houses can still be seen to this day. On September 7, 1964 the Kirby Muxloe railway station closed in the Beeching Axe.

Further information on the history of Kirby Muxloe can be found here www.kirbymuxloelocalhistorygroup.org