Ancestry UK

Town Gaol, Brackley, Northamptonshire

Brackley had a Town Gaol in its town hall. The building, located on the High Street, was opened in 1707.

In 1780, John Howard wrote:

A room called the Dungeon, four feet square, under the stair-case of the town-hall. An oval aperture in the door eight inches by six. The constable is gaoler. No court : no water.

1779, Oct. 13, No prisoners.

The prison served as a short-term lock-up, but appears to have fallen out of use by the early nineteenth century.

The town hall building, having had several refurbishments over the centuries, is now used as venue for events such as wedding, receptions etc.


Note: many repositories impose a closure period of up to 100 years for records identifying individuals. Before travelling a long distance, always check that the records you want to consult will be available.

  • No individual records identified for this establishment — any information welcome.
  • The National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, TW9 4DU. Has a wide variety of crime and prison records going back to the 1770s, including calendars of prisoners, prison registers and criminal registers.
  • Find My Past has digitized many of the National Archives' prison records, including prisoner-of-war records, plus a variety of local records including Manchester, York and Plymouth. More information.
  • Prison-related records on Ancestry UK include Prison Commission Records, 1770-1951, and local records from London, Swansea, Gloucesterhire and West Yorkshire. More information.
  • The Genealogist also has a number of National Archives' prison records. More information.


  • Prison Oracle - resources those involved in present-day UK prisons.
  • GOV.UK - UK Government's information on sentencing, probation and support for families.