The Website is regularly updated, so please visit again.
Oakley Vale is a 436-acre (1.76 km2) housing development situated in the south west of Corby, England. The development was begun in 2001 by Cofton, and over 3000 houses have now been built. The adjacent area of Snatchill, developed from around the mid-1990s, is often regarded as being within the Oakley Vale development boundary.
Oakley Vale contains a mix of housing types ranging from small apartments to large 5 or six bedroomed family homes. The cost of housing at levels lower than the UK average and the proximity to the East Midlands main line have attracted homebuyers from more expensive surrounding areas and even as far afield as London.
Local services in Oakley Vale include Morrisons and a parade of shops at Charter Court on Butland Road. This parade includes a Tesco, a number of fast food outlets, an estate agency as well as a Dentist and a Pharmacy. Oakley Vale Primary school was opened in 2008 and Brooke Weston College, one of the UK's best state schools, is located in the Oakley Vale development. The second Primary School is currently under construction and is due to open later this year.
Located in the south west of Corby, Oakley vale is within a few minutes of the A14 road (England) and just 23 miles (38 km) of the UK motorway network via the M1 motorway (Great Britain) and the M6 motorway The development is 2 miles (3 km) from Corby railway station providing fast links to London St Pancras station.
Just over 80 years ago, Corby was an unobtrusive stone-built village with a population of only 1,500 - and a main street of cottages and shops, intermingled with several old-fashioned pubs. Rising above this peaceful setting was the beautiful old church of St. John the Baptist which was soon to witness the most startling transformation in its history - the emergence of Corby as the boom town of the 30's and a symbol of the age of steel. Very few of its inhabitants would have envisaged the vast changes which were soon to take place, but in order to appreciate its impact on the surrounding countryside, we must first look at its earlier history.
Corby, or Corbei as it was known in ancient times, has a long ancestry but very little history compared with its illustrious neighbours at Deene Park, Kirby Hall and Rockingham Castle. nevertheless, one of the earliest human relics ever to be unearthed in Northamptonshire, was found in the parish - a skeleton together with a knife or dagger, which both dated to the Bronze Age. The skeleton was subsequently re-interred in the local churchyard, and the weapon taken to the museum at Northampton. The name of the village dates back to the 8th century when a group of Danish invaders, with their leader, Kori, settled there. It thus became known as 'Kori's by' - Kori's settlement. The Viking settlers also established a unique tradition, which would survive the years as part of a later custom, the 'Pole Fair', during which 'riding the stang' would take place.
The area around Corby has always been rich in iron-ore which was excavated and worked before the coming of the Romans, who it is believed, from various finds, had an ironworks there during their occupation of the country. These rich deposits were to be continually used throughout history. Royal furnaces, or 'ferraria' as they were known, were also set up at nearby Geddington and Gretton from the time of Edward the Confessor's reign to that of Henry III, and the Doomsday Book names the 'Manor of Corbei' as an iron producing centre.
The extent of the ironstone deposits in the Corby area became apparent with the coming of the railways in the 19th century when further excavations revealed large ironstone beds. Corby had its own ironstone works in 1910, the plant being taken over by Stewarts and Lloyds in 1920, but it was not until 1933 that construction began to tap the vast reserves under the surface of the surrounding countryside to produce steel, and to manufacture tubes for the world's markets.
The large integrated works soon began to take shape as hundreds of labourers poured into the district to join the construction gangs, with Corby taking on the appearance of a Gold Rush shanty town, rather than a sleepy old English Village. Workers came from all over Britain, and early in 1934 the first contingent of Scottish folk arrived to form a large proportion of the new population. During those eventful days, men had walked from all corners of the country to obtain work, the local public houses being unable to cope with the supply and demand for beer. It was quite a common sight to see Irish labourers washing themselves in the brook after sleeping rough all night under hedges or in old barns.
The first of the new streets to be completed was Bessemer Grove, and about the same time the rebuilt blast furnace was officially lit by Miss Elspeth MacDiarmid, youngest daughter of the company's chairman. Neville chamberlain, the Prime Minister, was taken on a tour of the plant in October of the same year, when it was nearly completed, and in October 1935 , the first steel was tapped from the Bessemer converters. Eventually, the social life of the town began to settle down with new housing and sufficient facilities being provided for the growing population.
During World War II, the skills of Corby workers made a significant contribution to the invasion of Europe, by developing the pipeline under the ocean (PLUTO), a cross-channel link, carrying essential fuel to the Allied forces, as they advanced.