A Topographical Dictionary of England. Originally published by S Lewis, London, 1848.
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Weobley (St. Peter and St. Paul)
WEOBLEY (St. Peter and St. Paul), a markettown and parish, the head of a union, and formerly an incorporated borough, in the hundred of Stretford, county of Hereford, 12 miles (N. W.) from Hereford, and 145 (W. N. W.) from London; containing 907 inhabitants, of whom 548 are in the borough, and 359 in Weobley Foreign. This ancient town consists of one street on the main road from Hereford to Knighton. The market is on Thursday; and fairs are held on the 9th of May and Oct. 18th, for cattle and hardware. The elective franchise was granted in the reign of Edward I. and renewed by Charles I.; suppressed by Cromwell; restored by Charles II., and withdrawn in the 2nd of William IV. A manorial court is held in October, the jurisdiction of which extends to the recovery of debts under 40s.; and the petty-sessions for the hundred take place here. The parish comprises 3309a. 2r. 30p.: there are quarries of good building-stone, and of stone fit for the roads. The living is a discharged vicarage, valued in the king's books at £9. 1., and in the gift of the Bishop of Hereford: the great tithes have been commuted for £358, and the vicarial tithes for £250, with a glebe-house, and 11 acres of land. The church is a spacious structure in the later English style, with an embattled tower surmounted by a lofty, spire, and contains many handsome monuments, among which is one to Col. Birch, who distinguished himself in the parliamentary war. There is a small Roman Catholic chapel. A free grammar school was founded in 1655, by William Crowther, citizen of London, and endowed with £20 per annum 3 he likewise bequeathed £100 to build a schoolhouse. The poor-law union of Weobley comprises 26 parishes or places, and has a population of 8478. On the south side of the town are the remains of an ancient castle which was taken by Stephen in the war between him and the Empress Matilda, for whom it had been kept by William Talbot.
WEONARD'S, ST., a parish, in the union of Ross, Lower division of the hundred of Wormelow, county of Hereford, 7¼ miles (W.by N.) from Ross; containing 644 inhabitants. This place was plundered by the Scottish troopers during the siege of Hereford, in the time of the parliamentary war; and a spot is still called Scot's Brook, where a Scottish soldier, who was taking some bread out of an oven, was killed by the woman of the cottage. The parish comprises 4536a. 3r. lp., of which the greater portion is arable land: there are some quarries of building and flag stone. The living is annexed, with the livings of Little Dewchurch, Hentland, and Llangarran, to the vicarage of Lugwardine: the great tithes have been commuted for £456, and the vicarial for £209. The church is a handsome structure in the later English style, with a square embattled tower. Here are places of worship for Primitive and Wesleyan Methodists. Treago, an estate in the parish, has belonged to the family of Mynors ever since the Conquest; the mansion is of high antiquity, and of very singular architecture.
Wereham (St. Margaret)
WEREHAM (St. Margaret), a parish, in the union of Downham, hundred of Clackclose, W. division of Norfolk, 1¾ mile (N. W.) from Stoke-Ferry; containing 625 inhabitants. A Benedictine priory in honour of St. Winwaloe, or St. Guenolo, was founded here about the beginning of the reign of John, by the Earl of Clare, as a cell to the abbey of Mounstroll, in France; it was given in 1321 to the abbey of West Dereham, and at the Dissolution had a revenue of £7. 2. 8. The parish comprises 2104a. 27p., of which 893 acres are arable, 877 pasture and meadow, 29 wood, and 297 fenland. The village is on the road from Lynn to Bury St, Edmund's. The living is a perpetual curacy, with that of Wretton annexed; net income, £109; patron, Edward R. Pratt, Esq., who with the Trustees of G. R. Eyres, Esq., is impropriator. The great tithes have been commuted for £253. 12., and the small for £290. 10.: the tithes of about 200 acres belonging to John Houchen, Esq., of Wereham Hall, and others have merged in the land. The church is chiefly in the early and later styles, with a square embattled tower, and has some neat memorials to the Adamson, Heaton, Mason, and other families. There is a place of worship for Wesleyans. At the inclosure, about 25 acres of land were allotted to the poor for fuel; and the interest of £500 left by Miss Sarah Adamson in 1791, of £300 by Richard Adamson, Esq., in 1800, and £100 by John Whayte, Esq., in 1826, is appropriated to charitable uses. St. Winwaloe's Well still exists in the parish.
WERNETH, a township, in the parish and union of Stockport, hundred of Macclesfield, N. division of the county of Chester, 5 miles (N. E. by E.) from Stockport; containing 3904 inhabitants. This township, noticed in the Norman survey as Warnet, is situated on the right bank of the river Etherow, upon the edge of Derbyshire; and is bounded on the north-west by the river Tame. It is about 3½ miles in extreme length, by 2½ in breadth; of irregular form; chiefly pasture, and of a stiff clayey soil. Werneth Loe or Low, which is of considerable height, and inclosed and cultivated to its summit, divides the township into two equal parts: the view to the south and east is quite into a hill country, peak rising behind peak, and range behind range, as far as the eye can reach; and turning to the north and west, the view extends over the plains of Lancashire, and would be very extensive but for the forests of chimneys and the clouds of smoke. In the township are the hamlets of Gee-Cross and Compstall-Bridge, the former of which takes its name from the ancient family of Gee, who erected a stone cross here, that has disappeared; it consists of one wide street, half a mile in length, on the road from Stockport to Mottram-in-Longdendale. The cotton manufacture, calico-printing, and the making of hats, are extensively carried on; and some stone-quarries are in operation. Fairs for cattle take place on April 28th and November 20th, at Gee-Cross. The PeakForest canal passes through the township. A church, dedicated to St. Paul, a plain but neat structure, was erected in 1841, at a cost of about £2000: the living is a perpetual curacy, with an endowment of £45, together with the pew-rents; patron, G. Andrew, Esq. At Compstall is a place of worship for Methodists, and at GeeCross one for Unitarians.
WERNETH, an ecclesiastical district, in the parochial chapelryand poor-law union of Oldham, parish of Prestwich, hundred of Salford, S. division of Lancashire, adjoining the town of Oldham. This place, anciently Fernet, was held in the reign of Henry III. by Alwardus de Aldholme, founder of the family of Oldham. His daughter and co-heiress conveyed the manor to the Cudworths, a branch of a Yorkshire family; and from them the estate passed by sale to Sir Ralph Assheton, of Middleton. It afterwards passed to the Listers; was purchased by Messrs. Parker and Sidebottom, of London, for £25,000; and by them was sold, in 1794, to the Lees family, of Oldham, for £30,000. John Frederick Lees, Esq., is the present lord. Werneth consists of about 100 acres; it abounds in the very best coal, and there are several good stone-quarries. The ecclesiastical district, which comprehends part of the town of Oldham, and part of the adjacent open country, was constituted in 1845, under the act 6th and 7th Victoria, cap. 37. The living is a perpetual curacy, in the patronage of the Crown and the Bishop of Manchester, alternately; income, £130. Divine service is for the present performed in a room licensed by the bishop. The Baptists have a place of worship.
Werrington (St. Martin and St. Giles)
WERRINGTON (St. Martin and St. Giles), a parish, in the union of Launceston, hundred of Black Torrington, Lifton and N. divisions of Devon, 2½ miles (N. by W.) from Launceston; containing 685 inhabitants. The living is a donative curacy, in the gift of the Duke of Northumberland, with an income of £229: the tithes have been commuted for £290.
WERRINGTON, a chapelry, in the parish of Paston, union and soke of Peterborough, N. division of the county of Northampton, 3½ miles (N. N. W.) from Peterborough; containing 629 inhabitants. The interest of £100, bequeathed by John Goodwin in 1755, is distributed among widows.
WERVIN, a township, in the parish of St. Oswald, city of Chester, union of Great Boughton, Lower division of the hundred of Broxton, S. division of the county of Chester, 4¼ miles (N. by E.) from Chester; containing 65 inhabitants. It comprises 697 acres, of which the soil is clay. The Ellesmere, or Wirrall, canal bounds it on the west.
Wesham, with Medlar.—See Medlar.
West Acomb, county of Northumberland.—See Acomb, West.
West-Acre (All Saints)
WEST-ACRE (All Saints), a parish, in the union and hundred of Freebridge-Lynn, W. division of Norfolk, 5¼ miles (N. W. by N.) from Swaffham; containing 490 inhabitants. It is the property of A. Hamond, Esq., whose seat here, High House, is a handsome mansion in the Italian style, finely situated in a well-wooded park. The river Nar intersects the parish. The living is a donative; net income, £31; patron and impropriator, Mr. Hamond. The church is partly in the early and partly in the later English style, with a square embattled tower, and contains the mausoleum of the Hamond family, and many beautiful monuments to several of its members. A priory of Black canons, in honour of St. Mary and All Saints, was founded at WestAcre in the time of William Rufus, by Ralph de Toney, and at the Dissolution had a revenue of £308. 19. 11.: the remains of this once celebrated house exhibit specimens of the early and later English styles.
Westbeer (All Saints)
WESTBEER (All Saints), a parish, in the union of Blean, hundred of Bleangate, lathe of St. Augustine, E. division of Kent, 3½ miles (N..E. by E.) from Canterbury; containing 234 inhabitants. It comprises 1158a. 3r. 26p., of which 400 acres are marsh, 200 meadow and pasture, 20 woodland, and the remainder arable. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £7, and in the patronage of the Crown: the incumbent's tithes have been commuted for £274, and the glebe comprises two acres. The Archbishop of Canterbury receives the great tithes of a district called Rushbourne, which have been exchanged for £90. A piece of land, comprisiug nearly two acres, was left to the parish by an unknown benefactor, for supplying every resident person with a roll of bread, a piece of cheese, and part of 28 gallons of beer annually, which the tenant paid in lieu of rent; on the demise of the last occupier, the parish took possession, and let the land out in allotments to the poor at a trifling rent, which has been productive of great benefit.
Westborough (All Saints)
WESTBOROUGH (All Saints), a parish, in the union of Newark, wapentake of Loveden, parts of Kesteven, county of Lincoln, 7 miles (N. W. by N.) from Grantham; containing 250 inhabitants. The living is a rectory, in medieties, in the patronage and incumbency of the Rev. Robert Hall. The first mediety, with the vicarage of Dry Doddington annexed, is valued in the king's books at £20; net income, £76: the second is valued at £6. 13. 4.; net income, £477. The tithes were commuted for land in 1770.
West Bromwich.—See Bromwich, West.
Westbury (St. Augustine)
WESTBURY (St. Augustine), a parish, in the union of Brackley, hundred and county of Buckingham, 3 miles (E. S. E.) from Brackley; containing 471 inhabitants. It comprises 2500 acres, of which 1000 are arable, 700 meadow and pasture, and 800 woodland. The living is a vicarage, valued in the king's books at £9. 17. 1.; net income, £106; patron and impropriator, Benjamin Price, Esq. The church has been enlarged. The rent of an allotment awarded under an inclosure act in 1764, amounting to about £11 per annum, is distributed among the poor, who have also the right of cutting furze for fuel on the land.
Westbury (St. Mary)
WESTBURY (St. Mary), a parish, in the union of Atcham, hundred of Ford, S. division of Salop; containing, with the chapelry of Minsterley, 2435 inhabitants, of whom 1521 are in the township of Westbury with Westley and Yockleton, 8¾ miles (W. by S.) from Shrewsbury. The parish comprises about 10,000 acres, of which the soil is chiefly heavy, and well adapted for wheat, with portions of good barley and turnip land; the surface is generally flat, in some parts hilly. The substratum abounds with coal, of which extensive mines are in operation; and lead-ore appears to have been wrought at a very early period. At Snailbeach, where a large mine is now at work, a pig of lead has been found, marked with the name of the Emperor Aurelian. On the adjoining hill called the Stiperstones, a labourer, a few years since when digging a ditch, struck his spade against a large mass of rock containing lead-ore, within a few feet of the surface; a mine was immediately sunk on the spot, and many labourers were employed for several months in cutting away this single block. Pettysessions for the division arc held here during the winter months. The living is a rectory in two portions; Westbury in Dextra Parte, valued in the king's books at £13. 9. 4½., and having a net income of £643; and Westbury in Sinistra Parte, valued at £11. 12. 8½., and having a net income of £556. They are both in the patronage of E. W. S. Owen, Esq.: the tithes have been commuted for £1055, of which £281. 8. are payable to an impropriator; and the glebe comprises 33 acres. At Minsterley is a separate incumbency. The Rev. John Earl, in 1716, gave land now producing about £30 per annum, for teaching children.
Westbury (St. Lawrence)
WESTBURY (St. Lawrence), a parish, in the union of Wells, hundred of Wells-Forum, E. division of Somerset, 4 miles (N. W. by W.) from Wells; containing 647 inhabitants. It comprises 2968a. 2r. 26p., lying for the most part at the base of the Mendip hills; the substratum contains limestone of good quality, which is quarried for building and for burning into lime. The living is a discharged vicarage, with that of Priddy annexed, valued in the king's books at £11. 4. 9½., and in the gift of the Bishop of Bath and Wells: the great tithes have been commuted for £150, and the vicarial for £183; the glebe comprises 12 acres. The church is a plain structure, built partly in the reign of Stephen, and partly in that of Edward IV. A good glebe-house was lately erected.
WESTBURY, a hamlet, in the parish of East Meon, poor-law union of Petersfield, hundred of MeonStoke, Petersfield and N. divisions of the county of Southampton, 6¼ miles (W.) from Petersfield; containing 12 inhabitants.
Westbury (All Saints)
WESTBURY (All Saints), a borough and pa- rish, forming the hundred of Westbury, and the head of the union of Westbury and Whorwelsdown, in the Westbury and S. divisions, and Trowbridge and Bradford subdivisions, of Wilts; containing, with the chaperies of Bratton and Dilton, and the township of Leigh, 7588 inhabitants, of whom 3631 are in the town, 24 miles (N. W.by W.) from Salisbury, and 98 (W. by S.) from London. This place is of very great antiquity, aud is generally supposed to have been a British settlement, and to occupy the site of the Roman station Verlucio. Roman coins have been found in abundance. The name is of Saxon origin, being intended to designate the importance, or relative position, of the town: here, according to tradition, was a palace belonging to the West Saxon kings. The town is situated under Salisbury Plain, and has three principal streets, irregularly built, branching off towards Frome, Bradford, and East Lavington; the inhabitants are supplied with water from springs, and a small stream which falls into the Avon. The clothing-trade formerly flourished here, one house alone employing 1000 persons: the principal manufactures are broad-cloth and kerseymere, there being in and near the town eight factories, and several others within the parish. A considerable quantity of malt, also, is made. The market, now merely nominal, is on Tuesday, and for pigs only: fairs are held on the first Friday in Lent and Whit-Monday, for pedlery; and on Easter-Monday and September 24th, for cattle, horses, and cheese.
A charter of incorporation was granted by Henry IV., and the municipal body consists of a mayor, recorder, twelve aldermen, and the burgesses, with subordinate officers, none of them, however, exercising magisterial authority. Courts leet are held by the mayor in November, and by the steward of the manor in May; two high constables are appointed at the manorial court. The powers of the county debt-court of Westbury, established in 1847, extend over the registration-district of Westbury and Whorwelsdown. The borough constantly returned two members to parliament from the 27th of Henry VI. to the 2nd of William IV., when it was deprived of one, and the right of election was extended to the £10 householders of the entire parish: the mayor is returning officer. A handsome town-hall was erected in 1815, at the expense of the late Sir Manasseh Masseh Lopes, Bart. The parish comprises about 11,530 acres, of which 1700 are down, 600 woodland, and the remainder arable, pasture, and orchard.
The living is a discharged vicarage, in the patronage of the Bishop of Salisbury, valued in the king's books at £44. 16. 0½.; net income, £385. The great tithes have been commuted for £2424, and the small for £230: the vicar has a glebe of 31 acres. The church is a spacious structure, with a central tower, supposed to have been built about 900 years since; in the interior are several handsome monuments. Besides the chapels at Bratton and Dilton, there is a church at Dilton-Marsh, completed in September 1844, and dedicated to the Holy Trinity; it is of Norman design, and has some windows of stained glass. In the town are places of worship for Independents, Baptists, and Wesleyans. John Matravers, an opulent clothier of the place, and a member of the Society of Friends, in 1814 gave £1000 to found a free school, and £1000 for clothing women at Christmas. The sum of £17, being the dividend on a bequest of £500 by John Gibbs in 1772, is appropriated to supplying clothing to six men; and Westbury is entitled every fourth year to about £30, the rent of an estate bequeathed in 1615, by Thomas Ray, for the relief of clothiers. The poor-law union comprises 10 parishes or places, and contains a population of 13,395. William de Westbury, a puisne judge of the court of common pleas; and James Ley, Earl of Marlborough, are interred within the church. Bryan Edwards, historian of the British colonies in the West Indies; and Dr. Philip Withers, a writer of some eminence about the close of the last century, were natives of the town.
Westbury-upon-Severn (St. Peter and St. Paul)
WESTBURY-upon-Severn (St. Peter and St. Paul), a parish, and the head of a union, in the hundred of Westbury, W. division of the county of Gloucester, 2½ miles (N. E. by E.) from Newnham; containing 2225 inhabitants. This place is bounded on the east and south by the river Severn, which is here crossed by a ferry to Framilode. It was the scene of some military transactions during the civil war of the 17th century. The parish comprises 8025a. 2r. 5p., of which 290 acres are woodland, and the remainder arable and pasture in nearly equal portions, with a considerable quantity of orchard and garden ground. The living is a vicarage, valued in the kings books at £20. 2. 8½., and in the patronage of the Custos of the College of VicarsChoral in Hereford Cathedral: the great tithes have been commuted for £628, and the vicarial for £291. 11. The church is partly in the decorated and partly in the later English style, with a square embattled tower; over the west door is a crucifix, with the figures of St. Mary and St. John sculptured in stone. There is a place of worship for Wesleyans; and a school is endowed with £10 per annum. The poor-law union of Westbury comprises 13 parishes or places, containing a population of 14,619.
Westbury-upon-Trym (Holy Trinity)
WESTBURY-upon-Trym (Holy Trinity), a parish, in the union of Clifton, partly in the Lower division of the hundred of Henbury, W. division of the county of Gloucester, and partly in the county of the city of Bristol, 3 miles (N. N. W.) from Bristol; containing, with the chapelry of Shirehampton, and the tything of Bishop-Stoke, 5029 inhabitants, of whom 1707 are in Westbury township. A monastery existed here early in the ninth century, which was refounded near the close of the eleventh; it was dedicated to the Blessed Virgin, and made a cell to the priory of Worcester, but was dissolved in the reign of Henry I. About 1288, it became a college for a dean and canons, in honour of the Holy Trinity; in 1443, it was rebuilt, and its possessions augmented by William Canning, a merchant, and Dr. Carpenter, who held the see of Worcester, and styled himself Bishop of Worcester and Westbury. Its revenue at the Dissolution was estimated at £232. 14.; and the house, which remained till the reign of Charles I., was burned by Prince Rupert, to prevent its falling into the power of the parliament. Some traces of it are still visible in a mansion erected on its site. The parish is bounded on the south-west by the river Avon, and comprises by survey 5100 acres of land. The substratum abounds with limestone, which is quarried for building and for burning into lime; the celebrated stone called Cotham stone is obtained, and some lead-mines were formerly in operation. About a mile and a half northeast of the village, is a prodigious cavern called Pen-Park Hole. The living is a perpetual curacy; net income, £630; patron and impropriator, the Rev. Charles Vivian, whose tithes have been commuted for £472, and whose glebe comprises 24 acres. The church, which was formerly collegiate, is an ancient structure, partly in the early and partly in the later English style, with a square embattled tower; the chancel was built by Bishop Carpenter. There are chapels at Redland and Shirehampton. The Wesleyans have a place of worship; and a national school is supported. Wickliffe, prebendary of Aust, and Bishop Carpenter, were natives of the parish, and were interred here.
Westby, with Basingthorpe
WESTBY, with Basingthorpe, a parish, in the union of Grantham, wapentake of Beltisloe, parts of Kesteven, county of Lincoln, 3¾ miles (N. W.) from Corby; containing 137 inhabitants, of whom 96 are in Westby. There is a Roman Catholic chapel.
Westby, with Plumptons
WESTBY, with Plumptons, a township, in the new ecclesiastical parish of Ribby with Wrea, parish of Kirkham, union of the Fylde, hundred of Amounderness, N. division of Lancashire, 2½ miles (W.) from Kirkham; containing 643 inhabitants. Westbi and Plunton are mentioned in the Domesday survey, and as early as Edward I.'s reign were held by the family of Clifton, of whom William de Clifton had a charter for free warren in Clifton and Westby from Edward II. The township comprises 3419 acres, equally divided between arable and pasture, and of a flat surface, and various soil; the whole the property of Thomas Clifton, Esq., of Lytham Hall. About 400 acres are leased to William Stavert, Esq., of The Hill, who has essentially improved the property, and built a new house, from which are extensive and beautiful views on the river Ribble. Fox Lane Ends House, with 125 acres attached, is the residence of Henry Fisher, Esq. Westby Hall, the property of the Cliftons, is now a farmhouse. The road from Lytham to Kirkham intersects the township; the Preston and Wyre railway runs through it for one mile, 17 chains, and 20 yards, and the Lytham branch runs through for about three miles. The tithes have been commuted for £590. 10. payable to the Dean and Chapter of ChristChurch, Oxford, and £71. 6. 8. payable to the vicar of the parish.
Westcote (St. Mary)
WESTCOTE (St. Mary), a parish, in the union of Stow-on-the-Wold, Upper division of the hundred of Slaughter, E. division of the county of Gloucester, 4 miles (S. E. by S.) from Stow; containing 240 inhabitants. The parish comprises 1503 acres, of which 450 are arable, 100 wood, and the remainder meadow and pasture; the soil on the hills is a stone brash, and in the lower lands a strong clay. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £9. 7. 3½.; net income, £209; patron and incumbent, the Rev. T. P. Pantin, who is also lord of the manor. The church is an ancient structure, partly in the Norman style. In the register is recorded the marriage of Sir Thomas Littleton, Knt. and Bart., treasurer of the navy in 1682.