The village of Herlavestune was mentioned in the Domesday Book, which listed 60 acres holding 10 villagers, two smallholders, and 58 freemen. Smallholdings were farm plots that supported one family through cash crops and subsistence farming and freemen were villagers who owned their own land.
Edmund de Swynford built the ‘old’ Harlaxton Manor house. During this period John of Gaunt, the Duke of Lancaster, used the manor as a hunting lodge. Though the validity of this attribution is sometimes questioned, there is a “John of Gaunt” house located in Harlaxton Village that provides support for this claim.