The villages of Grimston, Saxelbye and
Shoby, lying about five miles to the north-west of Melton Mowbray, are situated on the southern slope of the ridge that makes up the southern
of the Vale of Belvoir. The parish is roughly within the triangle of
roads made up by the A6006 to the south and west, the A606 to the east and the 'Salt'
road to the north. (see map) The 'Salt' road has Roman origins meeting the Fosse
Way at the Six Hills encampment three miles to the west. It is undesignated by
the 'A' and 'B' system but is heavily used by traffic from the Vale cutting
across to Loughborough and the A46.
The industry of the parish is
predominately farming which lends to the rural charm to the area but
it is well known for its 'horsey' connections and many casual riders
along with their racing cousins can be found hacking around the lanes of
the settlements. The Parish is Quorn Monday country and meetings provide a splash of colour to the
parish is ideally situated for travel to Nottingham, Grantham, Leicester
and Loughborough and the A46 passing to the West of the parish connects
with the M1 near the M1 - M69 junction. Five miles to the South West,
Melton Mowbray has rail connections to Birmingham via Leicester and to
Peterborough and Stanstead Airport.
The mid year 2000 parish population
record estimates 329 people resident in the parish, of those Grimston 263, Saxelbye 27 and
Shoby is the most significant of the three villages in the parish.
Gregory Brokesby, resident of Shoby, became the Sheriff of Leicestershire in 1632 and held
court over the Lordship of Shoby and the Manors of Saxelbye, Grimston
and Much Ashby and several other manors, farms and lands in Leicestershire and other counties.
examination of the Brokesby family history makes references to the great
house at Shoby. It is often referred to as Shoby Priory, which it never
was. In its day it would have been a fine house, in 1664 hearth tax was
paid on the house for 21 chimneys. The great hall had an oriel window
and the house also had a fine staircase but there is little or nothing left
of the house today.
Until the mid 20th century Grimston boasted a general shop, Post Office and
school but all these have now become private dwellings. Once
the Nottingham - London expresses steamed through the parish on the
Midland route to the south, and Saxelbye Station, named Grimston (picture)
to the confusion with the Saxby Station to the East of Melton, hosted
local trains for Nottingham and Melton and sidings for the local milk
and dairy industry. Now the line is terminated at Edwalton near
Nottingham and it forms the test track which is leased to Alstrom for
the testing of the Pendelino trains purchased by Virgin for the West
Coast route to Scotland.
The parish is a delightful
jewel in the crown of High Leicestershire and to drive through its quiet
lanes down to Melton Mowbray's Tuesday market must draw many a contented
sigh from home coming travelers.