Northampton Waits

5th November 1742

“… being the Anniversary of the double happy Deliverance of these Kingdoms from Popery and Slavery, the Morning was usher’d in here by Ringing of Bells at all the Churches: The Mayor of this Corporation, attended by the Aldermen Baliffs, etc. and preceded by the Town Musick and Flags, went to All-Saints Church, where a sermon suitable to the Occasion was preached by the Vicar of that Church.”
(Popular recreations in English Society, R W Malcolmson, Warwick PhD Thesis, 1970.)


“Being the anniversary meeting at Northampton, of the governors and subscribers to the county infirmary, they went in procession, attended by the mayor, aldermen, baliffs, &c. preceded by the town musick and flags to the Church of All-Saints, where a sermon was preach’d by the Rev. Mr Henry Layng, rector of Paulersbury, and a collection of 32l.17s.6d. made at the church doors: ….”
(Northampton: The Gentleman’s Magazine, Vol 16, p 494, Monday 22nd September 1746.)


The Corporation of Northampton, within the remembrance of my informant, had a band of musicians called the corporation waits, who used to meet the judges at the entrance into the town at the time of the assizes. They were four in number, attired in long black gowns, two playing on violins, one on the hautboy, and the other on a whip and dub, or tabor and pipe.
(Northampton: “Glossary of Northamptonshire Words and Phrases” by Anne Elizabeth Baker (1854).)