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Extracted by Kay & John Collins 2007
Bastardy - Irchester

When a child was born out of wedlock the mother was expected to name the father so that maintenance could be claimed from him. She was often unable to work and reliant on the parish for relief and no parish wanted to pay, if it need not, to maintain the girl and her baby.
A court could issue a Filiation Order for money to be paid weekly until such child was able to support itself, refuse to set an order or dismiss the case for want of evidence. Some cases were abandoned because the two parties did not appear at court or the father had run away and occasionally the parties would make their own agreement out of court. Some entries are written twice and it is likely that the mother had twins and the reputed father was ordered to pay for each child.
The Quarter Sessions Bastardy papers give the name of the mother and her parish, the birth date and gender of the baby, the reputed father who was brought to the court and the result. If the mother was in the workhouse the Board of Guardians would take the case to court.

year Mother parish
Reputed Father occupation parish outcome/notes
1839 Mary ALLIBONE Irchester F 01 May 1839 John WILMER labourer Wymington BDF oder made

NRO Ref: Misc. QS 211 + 218
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