A Topographical Dictionary of England. Originally published by S Lewis, London, 1848.
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BIELBY, a chapelry, in the parish of Hayton, union of Pocklington, Holme-Beacon division of the wapentake of Harthill, E. riding of York, 3½ miles (S. by W.) from Pocklington; containing 273 inhabitants. It comprises about 1220 acres of land, of which a great part, together with the manor, belongs to Merton College, Oxford: the village, which is of neat appearance, is in the vicinity of the Pocklington canal. The tithes were commuted in 1814 for an allotment of land: the chapel is an ancient building, dedicated to St. Giles, and is served by the vicar. There is a place of worship for Wesleyans.
BIERLEY, NORTH, a township, in the parish and union of Bradford, wapentake of Morley, W. riding of York, 2 miles (S.) from Bradford; containing 9512 inhabitants. This township comprises by computation 3264 acres, of which 2250 are pasture, 276 arable, 238 woodland, and about 500 waste. The old Hall has been rebuilt in a handsome modern style; it is beautifully situated in grounds tastefully embellished, and in front of the house is a noble cedar of Lebanon, presented when a seedling to Dr. Richardson of Bierley by Sir Hans Sloane, more than a century since, and which has attained a stately and majestic growth. Royds Hall, which has been for many years the residence of the Dawson family, was originally built by the Rookes, who held the manor from the time of Henry VIII., till the close of the last century; it is in the ancient English style. The manor of Royds Hall, together with the minerals underneath the estate, was purchased from the last proprietor in 1788, by the ancestors of Messrs. Hird, Dawson, and Hardy, who originally established the celebrated Low Moor iron-works, now the most important in the north of England, both for extent, and for the superior quality of their produce. The works comprise furnaces, forges, tilts, and mills, on a very extensive scale, both for the manufacture of pig and bar iron, and for rolling and slitting it into sheets, bars, and rods, with foundries for the casting of cannon and ordnance of all kinds. Boilers for steam-engines, sugar-pans for the East and West Indies, water-pipes of large calibre, and a great variety of other articles, are manufactured here. The Bierley iron-works were commenced in 1810 by Henry Leah and James Marshall, Esqrs., and their partners, who hold on lease from Miss Currer all the minerals under the east end of Bierley, together with those under her estates in the townships of Bowling and Okenshaw. These works are confined to the manufacture of pig-iron, which, being the produce of ore from the same mine, is equal in quality with that of the Low Moor and Bowling works; they are conducted on an extensive scale. A worsted-mill has been built near the Low Moor. Bierley chapel was erected in 1766, in the township of Bowling, though immediately bordering on the north-east of North Bierley, by Richard Richardson, Esq., son of Dr. Richardson, but was not consecrated till 1824; it was enlarged by Miss Currer in 1828, and 1831, principally for the accommodation of the poor, and is a beautiful structure in the Grecian style. The living is a perpetual curacy, with a good house, and is in the patronage of Miss Currer, whose liberal addition of £40 per annum augments the income to £200.—See Wibsey.
Bierton (St. James)
BIERTON (St. James), a parish, in the union and hundred of Aylesbury, county of Buckingham, 1½ mile (N. E. by E.) from Aylesbury; containing, with the hamlet of Broughton, 605 inhabitants. The living is a vicarage, with the livings of Buckland, Quarrendon, and Stoke-Mandeville annexed, valued in the king's books at £20. 10.; net income, £272; patrons and appropriators, the Dean and Chapter of Lincoln. A Sunday school on the national plan is endowed with £10 per annum. Mr. Hill, in 1723, gave property, directing the proceeds to be applied in clothing poor men, and in educating and apprenticing children.
Bigbury (St. Lawrence)
BIGBURY (St. Lawrence), a parish, in the union of Kingsbridge, hundred of Ermington, Ermington and Plympton, and S. divisions of Devon, 4 miles (S.) from Modbury; containing 652 inhabitants. The parish comprises by computation 2500 acres, whereof 2100 are arable, 150 meadow, 200 wood and brake, and 50 garden and orchard. It is bounded on the east by the river Avon, which falls into Bigbury bay, an inlet of the English Channel, the navigation of which is somewhat dangerous. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £28. 7. 11., and in the patronage of the Livingston family; net income, £658.
Bigby (All Saints)
BIGBY (All Saints), a parish, in the union of Caistor, S. division of the wapentake of Yarborough, parts of Lindsey, county of Lincoln, 4½ miles (E.) from Glandford-Brigg; containing, with the hamlets of Kettleby and Kettleby-Thorp, 245 inhabitants. It comprises 2784 acres, of which 1484 are meadow and pasture, and 1300 arable land. The village was formerly of considerable celebrity, from containing Kettleby Hall, the residence of the Roman Catholic family of Tyrwhitt, from whom the De Ros family claim their title; but of this once splendid mansion there are now no remains. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £31. 10. 10., and in the gift of Robert C. Elwes, Esq.: the tithes have been commuted for £726, and there are 28 acres of glebe. The church contains monuments of great beauty and considerable antiquity.
BIGGE'S QUARTER, a township, in the parish of Long Horsley, union of Morpeth, W. division of Morpeth ward, N. division of Northumberland, 8 miles (N. N. W.) from Morpeth; containing 252 inhabitants. The lands of this place, which was once called Linden Quarter, and Carlisle's Quarter, continued in fee in the family of Merlay and their descendants, from the time of Henry I. till the last century, when the Earl of Carlisle sold them. The township is situated on the river Coquet, and on the road to Edinburgh through Wooler; and comprises 2666 acres of pasture and meadow, and 193 of wood. The soil is for the most part clay; much of the land lying on each side of the road between the village of Long Horsley and Linden, is of excellent quality, and the whole is more or less fertile: improvements have been made during the present century by draining and planting. Quarries of coarse freestone are worked for building purposes.
BIGGIN, a township, in the parish of Wirksworth, hundred of Appletree, S. division of the county of Derby, 5½ miles (E. by N.) from Ashbourn; containing 149 inhabitants. Here was formerly a church or chapel, not even the site of which is now known. The township was once considered to be in the parish of Kniveton, but it has been deemed for nearly four centuries part of Wirksworth.
Biggin, with Newton.—See Newton.
BIGGIN, a township, in the parish of Kirk-Fenton, Upper division of the wapentake of Barkstone-Ash, W. riding of York, 6¾ miles (W. N. W.) from Selby; containing 126 inhabitants. It comprises by computation, including the area of Little Fenton, 2250 acres: the village, which is small, is situated north of the road from Sherburn to Cawood. Allotments of land and money payments were assigned in lieu of all tithes and moduses for the township, under an inclosure act, in 1770. The plant teasel (Dipsacus Fullonum), used in dressing woollen-cloth, is said to have been first cultivated here on its introduction into England.
Biggins, Higher and Lower
BIGGINS, HIGHER and LOWER, hamlets, in the township and parish of Kirkby-Lonsdale, union of Kendal, Lonsdale ward, county of Westmorland, the former ¾, the latter ¼, of a mile (S. W.) from KirkbyLonsdale; containing 150 inhabitants. These hamlets lie on the borders of Lancashire. There is a limestonequarry.
Biggleswade (St. Andrew)
BIGGLESWADE (St. Andrew), a market-town and parish, and the head of a union, in the hundred of Biggleswade, county of Bedford, 10½ miles (E. S. E.) from Bedford, and 45 (N. N. W.) from London, on the road to York; containing, with the hamlets of Holme and Stratton, 3807 inhabitants, and comprising 4200 acres, of which 200 are common or waste. The town is pleasantly situated on the river Ivel, which is crossed by two stone bridges, and which, by act of parliament, has been made navigable to its junction with the Ouse, whereby the neighbourhood is supplied with coal, timber, and various articles of merchandise. A large portion of the town was destroyed by fire in 1785, to which circumstance its handsome appearance may partly be attributed. It is lighted with gas, and has been lately much improved by the erection of new buildings; the houses are uniformly of brick, the air is pure and salubrious, and the inhabitants are supplied with excellent water from numerous springs. The environs, abounding with elegant villas and picturesque scenery, present a pleasing appearance. The making of white thread-lace and edging, and straw-plat, affords employment to a considerable part of the female population; much of the traffic of the town arises from its situation on the great north road, and the railway from London to York will pass by. The market, which is on Wednesday, is much resorted to for grain, and fairs are held on Feb. 13th, the Saturday in Easter-week, Whit-Monday, and Nov. 8th, for horses and live stock of every kind; a fair on August 2nd has been discontinued. The county magistrates hold a petty-session for the hundreds of Biggleswade, Clifton, and Wixamtree: the powers of the county debt-court of Biggleswade, established in 1847, extend over the registration-district of Biggleswade.
The living is a discharged vicarage, valued in the king's books at £10; patron, the Prebendary of Biggleswade: the rectorial tithes have been commuted for £937. 10., and the vicarial for £312. 10.; the glebe consists of a small piece of land. The church, formerly collegiate, is a venerable structure in the early English style: the chancel was rebuilt in 1467, by John Reeding, Archdeacon of Bedford, whose arms are carved on some wooden stalls in the north aisle; and the entire building has recently undergone considerable repair. A chantry belonging to the guild of the Holy Trinity anciently existed in the church; the revenue, at the Dissolution, was £7. There are places of worship for Baptists and Wesleyans. Sir John Cotton, in 1726, bequeathed for charitable uses £1800 to be laid out in the purchase of land, two-ninths of the rental to be given as a salary to a schoolmaster, and one-ninth to the vicar: the proceeds are about £36 per annum. There is also an endowment of £13 a year, from lands at Holme, given by Edward Peake, in 1755, for the instruction of more children. The poor law union of Biggleswade comprises 26 parishes and places, and contains a population of 20,694. In 1770 a yellow earthen pot, containing 300 gold coins of the reign of Henry VI., was discovered by a ploughman, in a field near the manor-house.
Bighton (All Saints)
BIGHTON (All Saints), a parish, in the union of Alresford, hundred of Bishop's-Sutton, Alton and N. divisions of the county of Southampton, 2½ miles (N. E. by E.) from Alresford; containing 284 inhabitants. The parish comprises 2040 acres, and is pleasantly situated; numerous springs afford an abundant supply of pure water, and one of the tributaries of the river Itchen has its source here. The soil is a light loam, resting on chalk, in which flints are imbedded, and of which great quantities are collected and sent to Alresford and other places in the neighbourhood for repairing roads. The woods, of which there are about 350 acres, contain some fine specimens of beech, oak, and other timber. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £19. 8. 1½., and in the gift of J. T. Maine, Esq.: the tithes have been commuted for £400, and the glebe comprises 25 acres, with a residence. The church, a venerable and handsome structure in the early English style, having become dilapidated, has been restored and repewed at an expense of £500.
Biglands, with Gamblesby
BIGLANDS, with Gamblesby, a township, in the parish of Aikton, union of Wigton, Cumberland ward, and E. division of Cumberland, 4 miles (N.) from Wigton; containing 187 inhabitants. At Gamblesby is a place of worship for Wesleyans. A sulphureous spring was discovered about 1775, the water of which is much used for cutaneous complaints.
BIGNALL-END, a township, in the parish of Audley, union of Newcastle-under-Lyme, N. division of the hundred of Pirehill and of the county of Stafford, 1 mile (E.) from Audley; containing 432 inhabitants. Here are a number of scattered houses and cottages; and several collieries.
Bignor (Holy Cross)
BIGNOR (Holy Cross), a parish, in the union of Sutton (under Gilbert's act), hundred of Bury, rape of Arundel, W. division of Sussex, 5½ miles (S. by E.) from Petworth; containing 210 inhabitants. Bignor Park is a spacious and handsome mansion, erected in 1826, on the site of an edifice built in 1632; it occupies an eminence commanding richly diversified views of the surrounding country. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £8. 3. 6½.; net income, £143; patron, Col. Wyndham. The church is a handsome structure, chiefly in the early English style. Between the years 1811 and 1817, the site of a magnificent Roman villa consisting of numerous apartments, was discovered in a field called the Berry, about a quarter of a mile from the village, and explored under the superintendence of Samuel Lysons, Esq., the antiquary and topographer; near it a Roman road was very distinctly marked, leading from Chichester, by Pulborough, to Dorking. Charlotte Smith, the novelist, wrote many of her works at this place, where her father, N. Turner, Esq., was resident.
Bilborough (St. Martin)
BILBOROUGH (St. Martin), a parish, in the union of Basford, S. division of the wapentake of Broxtow, N. division of the county of Nottingham, 4 miles (W. N. W.) from Nottingham; containing 267 inhabitants. The hamlet of Broxtow, in the parish, was once a place of considerable importance, and gave name to the wapentake. There are some coal-works. The living is a discharged rectory, valued in the king's books at £3. 12. 6.; net income, £273; patron, T. Webb Edge, Esq.: land was assigned to the rector in 1808, in lieu of tithes. Some interesting remains exist of an ancient manor-house.
BILBROUGH, a parish, in the Ainsty wapentake, W. riding of York, 4¼ miles (N. E.) from Tadcaster; containing 216 inhabitants. It is situated on the road between Tadcaster and York, and comprises by computation 1410 acres of generally fertile land: the village, which is small but pleasant, is seated on an eminence at a short distance from the road. A chantry was founded here in 1492, by John Norton, lord of the place, who ordained that £4. 6. 8., in land and inclosure, should be paid to Sir William Dryver, priest, and his successors, to pray for the souls of the founder, his wife, and children. The living is a perpetual curacy, in the gift of T. L. Fairfax, Esq.: the tithes have been commuted for £270. There is a place of worship for Wesleyans. Thomas, Lord Fairfax, the celebrated parliamentary general, who died in 1671, was interred in the church.
Bilby, with Barnby-Moor.—See Barnby-Moor.
Bildeston, or Bilson (St. Mary)
BILDESTON, or BILSON (St. Mary), a parish, and formerly a market-town, in the union and hundred of Cosford, county of Suffolk, 5 miles (N. N. W.) from Hadleigh, 14½ miles (W. N. W.) from Ipswich, and 66 (N. E. by N.) from London; containing 857 inhabitants. It comprises 1289a. 2r. 28p. of land, the soil of which is a strong productive clay. The manufacture of blankets and woollen-cloth was formerly carried on, and subsequently the chief employment of the inhabitants consisted in spinning yarn; but this also has much declined. The market was held on Wednesday; there are fairs on Ash-Wednesday and Holy-Thursday. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £12. 16. 10½.; patron and incumbent, the Rev. Charles Johnson: the tithes have been commuted for £412. 4. 6., and there are 50 acres of glebe. The church is a handsome spacious structure. There is a place of worship for Baptists. A chapel existed here, dedicated to St. Leonard, in which divine service was performed long after the Reformation.
BILHAM, a township, in the parish of HootonPagnell, union of Doncaster, N. division of the wapentake of Strafforth and Tickhill, W. riding of York, 7 miles (W. N. W.) from Doncaster; containing 75 inhabitants. It comprises about 600 acres, and contains strata of coal and limestone; excellent sandstone, also, used in the foundries at Rotherham and Sheffield, is procured. Bilham House is a handsome mansion, built, or greatly improved, in the last century by Thomas Selwood, Esq., who made it his principal seat. Subsequently a beautiful prospect-house was erected on the highest adjacent ground, by the late Mr. Hewet, at a cost of £1500; it consists of three stories, and from the summit may be seen in clear weather the cathedrals of York, Lincoln, and Southwell, together with a hundred churches.
BILLERICAY, a market-town and chapelry district, and the head of a union, in the parish of Great Burstead, hundred of Barstable, S. division of Essex, 9½ miles (S. S. W.) from Chelmsford, and 24 (E. N. E.) from London; containing 1284 inhabitants. The name, anciently written Beleuca, is of uncertain derivation, and of the history of the town few particulars of importance are recorded: by some it has been called Villa Ericæ, the "Village of Heath." From the discovery of Roman urns containing bones, glass vessels, and other relics, and from the traces of a Roman vallum and ditch formerly visible at Blunt's Walls, nearly a mile distant, the place appears to have been known to the Romans, who probably had a station here, though the exact site has not been ascertained. The town is pleasantly situated on the road from London to Southend, on an eminence overlooking an extensive and richly cultivated vale, and commanding a fine prospect of the surrounding country, which abounds with beautiful scenery, and a distant view of the shipping on the Thames: it has of late been much improved by the erection of several large and well-built houses. The only branches of manufacture are those of silk braid, laces, and wire ribbon, which are at present declining. The Eastern Counties railway passes a few miles to the north-west. Here were barracks, which have been converted into the workhouse for the union, which comprises 26 parishes and places, and contains a population of 14,934. The market is on Tuesday; and fairs, granted in 1476 by Edward IV., are held on Aug. 2nd and Oct. 7th; the former chiefly a pleasure-fair, and the latter a cattle-fair. Courts leet and baron are held on the Thursday in Whitsun-week, when constables and other officers for the internal regulation of the town are appointed. The living is a perpetual curacy, in the patronage of the Bishop of London; net income, £120. The chapel, dedicated to St. Mary Magdalene, is a brick building in the centre of the town, erected probably in the 14th century. There are places of worship for Baptists, the Society of Friends, and Independents. The Rev. Mr. Bayley, rector of Benfleet, in 1654 bequeathed an estate at Laindon, producing £45 per annum, for the education of 15 children; and 5 more are taught in one school, and 10 in another, from the interest of an endowment of £500 consols.
Billesdon (St. John the Baptist)
BILLESDON (St. John the Baptist), a parish, and the head of a union, in the hundred of Gartree, S. division of the county of Leicester, 9 miles (E. by S.) from Leicester, on the road to Uppingham; containing, with the chapelries of Goadby and Rolleston, 878 inhabitants. An annual fair, chiefly for pleasure, is held in April, but is not much attended: there are a few stocking-frames employed in the parish. The living is a vicarage, valued in the king's books at £14. 10.; net income, £279, arising from 156 acres of land; patron, H. Greene, Esq.; impropriators, R. Linney, Esq., and others. The church has been lately repewed. There are chapels of ease at Goadby and Rolleston; and a place of worship for Baptists. A school built in 1650, by William Sharp, has since been endowed with property producing about £23 per annum. The poor law union of Billesdon comprises 36 parishes and places, and contains a population of 6810. Here are some traces of a Roman camp, fortified with a deep ditch and a high rampart.
Billesley (All Saints)
BILLESLEY (All Saints), a parish, in the union of Stratford-upon-Avon, Stratford division of the hundred of Barlichway, S. division of the county of Warwick, 4 miles (W. N. W.) from Stratford; containing 31 inhabitants. This was at one period a considerable place, but became depopulated during the civil wars between the houses of York and Lancaster. It was formerly the property of the Whalley family, who resided in a large handsome Elizabethan house situated in a finely-wooded park, and of which one wing forms the present mansion. The estate was afterwards possessed by Bishop Sherlock, through whose sister, who married Sir Thomas Gooch, Bishop of Ely, it passed into the Gooch family, by whom it was sold to Mr. Miles, father of the late Matthew Miles, Esq. The parish comprises by measurement 793 acres, of which 579 are arable, 201 meadow and pasture, and 13 woodland; the surface is undulated, and there are some good views. The road from Stratford to Alcester passes through. The living is a discharged rectory, valued in the king's books at £5. 4. 7.; net income, £100; patrons, the family of Miles, and the Rev. T. Higgins. The church, which is in the Grecian style, was built about 1712, by Mr. Whalley. In 1844 was found, without the walls of the present churchyard, a stone coffin, containing a head, supposed to be that of a member of the Trussell family (anciently connected with the parish) who was slain at the battle of Evesham. Traces of streets and buildings are discernible here; and skeletons have been found.
Billing, Great (St. Andrew)
BILLING, GREAT (St. Andrew), a parish, in the union of Northampton, hundred of Spelhoe, S. division of the county of Northampton, 4 miles (E. N. E.) from Northampton; containing 401 inhabitants. This parish comprises 1334 acres, whereof two-thirds are arable, and the remainder pasture; it is bordered on the south by the river Nene, and intersected by the road from Northampton to Wellingborough. The manufacture of shoes by men, and of lace by women, is carried on; and stone is quarried for the repair of roads. At Billing Bridge is a station on the Peterborough railway. Billing Lings, an area of wood nearly a mile in circumference, is famous for ling or fern. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £19, and in the patronage of Brasenose College, Oxford. In 1778, 291 acres of land, now valued at £436 per annum, and a money payment, were assigned in lieu of tithes; and there is a good glebe-house. The church is an ancient building with a square tower; it contains a north chancel, built by the Thomonds, who resided in the parish for several years, and beneath it is a sepulchre in which many members of that family are interred. There is a place of worship for Wesleyans. Sir Isaac Wake, a distinguished scholar and diplomatist, was born here in 1575.
Billing, Little (All Saints)
BILLING, LITTLE (All Saints), a parish, in the union of Northampton, hundred of Spelhoe, S. division of the county of Northampton, 3¼ miles (E. by N.) from Northampton; containing 101 inhabitants. The parish comprises 856a. 3r. 4p., and is intersected by the river Nene; its soil is of a highly rich and productive quality, and the surface moderately undulated. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £10. 2. 11., and in the patronage of Earl Brownlow: the tithes have been commuted for £349, and there are 8 acres of glebe, with a house. In the church is a curious Norman font.
Billingborough (St. Andrew)
BILLINGBOROUGH (St. Andrew), a parish, in the union of Bourne, wapentake of Aveland, parts of Kesteven, county of Lincoln, 3 miles (E.) from Folkingham; containing 999 inhabitants. This parish, which is situated on the borders of the Fens, comprises 2239a. 6p. of land in nearly equal portions of arable and pasture; stone of inferior quality is quarried for repairing the roads. A fair, chiefly for wooden-ware, is held on the 2nd and 3rd of July at Stow Green, about a mile and a half distant; and also a horse-fair. The living is a discharged vicarage, valued in the king's books at £6. 1. 8.; net income, £237, arising from 137a. 3r. of land; patron and impropriator, Earl Fortescue. The church has a fine tower and spire, and displays chiefly the decorated style of English architecture. There are places of worship for Calvinists and Wesleyans. Mary Toller, in 1671, gave land producing about £34 per annum, for the endowment of a free school, which is conducted on the national plan. The Roman Cor Dyke passes within a mile to the east of the village. There are some chalybeate springs.
BILLINGE, CHAPEL-END, a township and chapelry, in the parish and union of Wigan, hundred of West Derby, S. division of the county of Lancaster, 5½ miles (S. W.) from Wigan, on the road to St. Helen's; containing 1550 inhabitants. Billinge anciently gave name to a family the chief line of which terminated about the reign of Edward I., in a female heir, who married into the Heyton family. The estate was afterwards possessed by the Bisphams, Owens, and Leighs. The whole district comprehended in the name was formerly one township divided into two hamlets, which are now separate townships called respectively Billinge Chapel-End and Billinge Higher-End; the affix to this, the southern portion, being given to it because it contained the chapel. The township of Chapel-End comprises 1044 acres, of which 830 are arable, 174 pasture, 27 wood, and 13 common. The population are engaged in agriculture, hand-loom weaving, in quarrying stone, and in collieries, of which last the produce is abundant and of excellent quality. The living is a perpetual curacy, in the patronage of the Rector of Wigan; net income, £156: the tithes have been commuted for £189. 7. 6. The chapel was built in 1650, and rebuilt in 1718, and is in the early English style, with a campanile tower. At Birchley is a Roman Catholic chapel. A school is endowed with £40 per annum.
BILLINGE, HIGHER-END, a township, in the chapelry of Up Holland, parish and union of Wigan, hundred of West Derby, S. division of the county of Lancaster, 5 miles (W. S. W.) from Wigan; containing 712 inhabitants. It comprises 1302 acres, whereof 492 are arable, 682 pasture, 40 wood, and 88 common: the surface is elevated, presenting very extensive prospects from Billinge Beacon; the soil is of various quality. A coal-mine and three stone-quarries are in operation. The tithes have been commuted for a yearly rent-charge of £216. 13. The Wesleyan Methodists have a place of worship; and a school is endowed with £20 per annum.
Billingford (St. Leonard)
BILLINGFORD (St. Leonard), a parish, in the union of Depwade, hundred of Earsham, E. division of Norfolk, 1½ mile (E.) from Scole; containing 219 inhabitants. This parish, anciently called Pryleston, is intersected by the road from Bury to Yarmouth, and bounded on the south by the river Waveney, which separates it from Suffolk. It comprises 1037 acres, whereof 20 are common or waste. The living is a discharged rectory, with that of Little Thorpe annexed, valued in the king's books at £9; net income, £264; patron, G. St. Vincent Wilson, Esq.: there are about 20 acres of glebe. The church consists of a nave and chancel, separated by the remains of a carved screen, and has a low square tower.
BILLINGFORD, a parish, in the union of Mitford and Launditch, hundred of Eynsford, E. division of Norfolk, 6 miles (N. N. E.) from East Dereham; containing 353 inhabitants. This parish is bounded on the south and west by the river Wensum, and comprises by computation 1800 acres, of which 1470 are arable, 320 pasture, and 10 woodland. The living is a discharged rectory, valued in the king's books at £7. 10., and in the patronage of the Rt. Hon. E. Ellice: the tithes have been commuted for £360, and there are 27 acres of glebe. The church is an ancient structure in the early English style, with an octangular tower; the font is of Norman character, and on the south side of the chancel is a piscina. There is a place of worship for Primitive Methodists. At Beck Hall, in the parish, the birthplace of Chancellor Bacon, and the ancient seat of the Coke family, an hospital, with a chapel dedicated to St. Thomas a Becket, was founded in the beginning of the reign of Henry III.