Dominated by its church, St Peter ad Vincula (St Peter in chains), the small village of Threekingham lies 7 miles south of Sleaford, just off the modern A52 linking Nottingham to Boston. Folklore suggests that the village was originally called Laundon, but this was changed after the bloody battle fought near Threekingham, in either 869 or 870, between the Saxons (led by the earls Algar, Morcar and Leofric) and the invading Danes (during which 3 Danish kings and many of their followers were slain). What is more likely, however, is that the original settlement or 'ham' was created more than 1300 years ago when the Saxon 'Trincinghas' tribe came to the area near to the crossroads of the Roman road (Mareham Lane) which was built as an offshoot of the Ermine Street to help defend the Carr Dyke (6 km to the east of the village), and the more ancient Salters Way that joined the salt mines at Droitwich in the West Midlands to the Wash.
It is possible that the original church of St Peter was one of those built on the sites of battles involving Danes by King Canute, after he became a Christian in 1025. The Domesday Book of 1085 records 2 churches in Threekingham: St Peter's and St Mary's (which may have been at Stow). It also records an annual Fair (which was confirmed in 1329 in a Charter by Edward III), and a Thursday market. The rebuild that produced the present St Peter's started in about 1180 during Henry II's reign, and was completed in 1334 (Edward III). The relatively large size of the church reflects the fact that during this period Threekingham was a prosperous market town of just under 1000 people. The Black Death, which struck England in 1349, reduced Threekingham to a permanently small village with a population of about 150.
Most of the village's old cottages, such as those illustrated in 'The Row', have been demolished and replaced with more modern detached dwellings. However, throughout Threekingham there are houses still to be found that reflect their antiquity through the limestone 1st storeys which have been extended to two-
For most of its existence, Threekingham has been an agrarian society that relied on the farmers and other local landowners to provide work for the villagers. Since the Second World War, however, the wide scale introduction of machines into farming has had as profound an effect on the industry as the enclosure of fields did several centuries before. Today there is but 1 working farm left in Threekingham, and it is now a dormitory community with most of the villagers commuting daily to their places of work.
Made from the jaw bone of a whale, it was erected to commemorate a 19th Century whaling expedition by a member of the Cragg family.