A Topographical Dictionary of England. Originally published by S Lewis, London, 1848.
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ROWLAND'S-MARSH, an extra-parochial liberty, in the union of Boston, W. division of the soke of Bolingbroke, parts of Lindsey, county of Lincoln; containing 78 inhabitants, and about 100 acres of land.
Rowley (St. Peter)
ROWLEY (St. Peter), a parish, in the union of Beverley, Hunsley-Beacon division of the wapentake of Harthill, E. riding of York, 4 miles (E. N. E.) from South Cave; containing, with the hamlets of Bentley, Risby, Hunsley, Riplingham, and Little Weighton, 503 inhabitants. The parish comprises about 5760 acres, and forms a fertile district extending between South Cave and Beverley, along the southern dales and acclivities of the Wolds. The hamlet of Rowley, in which are the church and rectory-house, is situated a short distance north of the road between Kirk-Ella and Riplingham. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £20. 1. 8., and in the patronage of Mrs. Hildyard; net income, £1465: the tithes were commuted for land and a corn-rent in 1801. The church is a small neat edifice.
Rowley-Regis (St. Giles)
ROWLEY-REGIS (St. Giles), a parish, in the union of Dudley, N. division of the hundred of Seisdon, S. division of the county of Stafford, 3 miles (S. E.) from Dudley, and 7 (W.) from Birmingham; containing 11,111 inhabitants. This parish is situated in a district abounding with clay, coal, and ironstone. It is bounded on the south and south-west by the river Stour, which divides it from the parish of Hales-Owen and the county of Worcester; and on the north and north-west by a rill which rises among the hills, and separates it from the parish of Dudley, in the county of Worcester, and from King's-Swinford, in the county of Stafford. Another rill, which has its source to the north, near the summit of the hills, after passing under the Birmingham canal at Tividale, falls into a nameless river which separates the parish on the north-east from Tipton and West Bromwich, and from the manor of Oldbury, in the parish of Hales-Owen. The surface, comprising nearly 3550 acres, is very uneven, and divided into numerous small inclosures, of which scarcely any two contiguous portions form one common level. The soil in the hilly parts is light and open, but in the lower grounds stiff, cold, and generally unproductive. At the extremity of the parish towards Hales-Owen, rise the Rowley hills, which extend in a northern direction to the opposite border of the parish, and consist of a peculiarly hard basaltic rock, commonly called Rowley Rag. These hills, which supplied materials for paving the town of Birmingham, and other towns in the vicinity, are said to have an elevation of 900 feet above the sea, into which the waters issuing from the eastern side are conveyed by the Trent, and those on the western by the Severn, at opposite extremities of the kingdom. J. Edwards Piercy, Esq., high sheriff of the county in 1843, has an estate here.
The parish comprises a considerable number of hamlets, with various clusters of houses, principally inhabited by persons engaged in the collieries and different works. The river Stour rises within two miles of the place, and, within a distance of four miles from its source, gives motion to no less than nine mills and forges, several of which have overshot water-wheels of large diameter. The iron-trade appears to have been carried on here at a very early period; and previously to the introduction of steam, all the mill power employed in it throughout the district was derived from the Stour and one or two tributary streams, to which, says Yarrington in his England's Improvements published in 1677, all the iron from the Forest of Dean was brought for the purpose of being manufactured. The stratum of coal lies at from 80 to 200 yards below the surface, varying from ten to thirteen in thickness; and there are numerous collieries in full operation. The Sutherland colliery, leased from the Duke of Sutherland, was opened by Messrs. Wagstaff and Skidmore, in 1842; the coal is ten yards thick, and the depth 200 yards. The Brades Iron and Steel Works were erected about fifty years since, by Mr. William Hunt, and are continued under the firm of William Hunt and Sons. The Windmill-End Works, the property of Sir Horace St. Paul, were erected about 30 years since, for making pig-iron from the ironstone, which is calcined in large heaps, and smelted in powerful furnaces. The Corngreaves Works, for converting bar-iron into steel, are among the oldest in the neighbourhood, and contain powerful furnaces, and several forges driven by the water of the river Stour. The Cradley forges are now chiefly for converting pig-iron into bars and rods: in these works the experiment was first made of manufacturing iron with pit-coal instead of charcoal, which had been previously used for that purpose; and in the 19th of James I., Mr. Dudley, then proprietor, obtained a patent for that mode of operation. Of these forges, one is situated on the river Stour, within the county of Worcester, and the other on the Rowley side of the river. Near Corngreaves, some very extensive iron and steel works were erected in 1818 by Mr. John Attwood, consisting of forges and rolling-mills, capable of manufacturing 300 tons of bar and rod iron, and 20 tons of various sorts of steel, per week. They are worked by four large steam-engines, and, with the collieries connected with them, afford employment to about 500 persons. In 1825, these and some other works, together with the Corngreaves estate, comprising about 250 acres, of which 205 are in the parish of Rowley-Regis, and the remainder in the county of Worcester, were, with the exception of the mines under seventy-five acres in this parish (reserved by the inclosure act to the lord of the manor), purchased by the British Iron Company for £550,000. After paying a part of this sum, proceedings were instituted in the court of exchequer by the company, to set aside the contract, which, after a trial of twenty-one days, was annulled by Lord Chief Baron Lyndhurst in favour of the company; but on an appeal to the house of lords this judgment was reversed. The present proprietors are the New British Iron Company. The manufacture of nails employs nearly all the women and girls in the parish; the making of chains of various kinds, and of gun-barrels, occupies a considerable number of persons, and the manufacture of Jews' harps is also a source of employment to many. The Birmingham canal enters the parish at the Brades, and passes through Tividale for about a mile; the Dudley canal is conveyed through Gosty Hill by a tunnel nearly 500 yards in length.
The living was annexed by Robert de Somery, in the 1st of Edward I., to the vicarage of Clent, and both belonged to the abbey of Hales-Owen: it has recently been made a distinct perpetual curacy, in the gift of the Crown. The body of the church was rebuilt in 1840, at an expense of £4763, raised by subscription, aided by a grant of £400 from the Diocesan, and £500 from the Incorporated, Society; the tower, which is exceedingly old, was in part cased with new stone, and raised forty feet higher. This appears to be the second time that the main edifice has been rebuilt: it now contains 1800 sittings, of which 1000 are free. At Reddal-Hill and Cradley-Heath are other churches, consecrated in 1847: see Reddal-Hill. There are 27 places of worship for dissenters in the parish. A school in the town, on a site given by Mr. Macmillan, who endowed it with £20 per annum, was erected after his decease by his brother, Mr. John Macmillan; and the endowment was augmented with an annuity of £10 left by Lady Monnins. In 1651, Elizabeth Mansell, whose maiden name was White, bequeathed two closes and two dwelling-houses at Gosty Hill for charitable uses. Sir Stephen Littleton, of Holbech House, in the parish of King's-Swinford, and one of the conspirators in the Gunpowder plot, was for some time concealed in the residence of a family of the name of White, of which Elizabeth Mansell is supposed to have been a member.
ROWLSTON, a hamlet, in the parish of Mappleton, union of Skirlaugh, N. division of the wapentake of Holderness, E. riding of York, 14 miles (E. N. E.) from Beverley; containing 41 inhabitants. This place, in Domesday book called Roolfestone, belonged in the 15th century to a family of the local name, and, after passing through several other families, came to that of Brough, with whom it continued till the death of William Brough, Esq., marshal of the high court of admiralty, who, in the discharge of his official duties, superintended the execution of Admiral Byng. Rowlston Hall is an old building about half a mile from the sea, surrounded, except on the south, by woods and plantations.
Rowlstone (St. Peter)
ROWLSTONE (St. Peter), a parish, in the union of Dore, hundred of Ewyaslacy, county of Hereford, 13 miles (S. W. by W.) from Hereford; containing 133 inhabitants. The parish comprises 1676 acres, and is situated near the junction of the Dore with the river Munnow, which latter separates it from the county of Monmouth. The soil is generally well adapted for the cultivation of apples, of which cider is made. Limestone is obtained in the neighbourhood. The living is a perpetual curacy; net income, £95; patron, incumbent, and impropriator, the Rev. John Morris.
ROWNER, a parish, in the union of Fareham, hundred of Titchfield, Fareham and S. divisions of the county of Southampton, 3 miles (N. W.) from Gosport; containing 134 inhabitants. It is bounded on the east and north by the parish of Alverstoke, and comprises by measurement 1144 acres, of which 876 are arable, 91 meadow and pasture, 71 woodland, and 95 common. The Gosport branch of the South-Western railway passes through the parish. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £6. 0. 2½., and in the gift of C. P. P. Brune, Esq.: the tithes have been commuted for £400, and the glebe comprises 7 acres. The church is an ancient structure, and contains a monument to the Brune family. Here are some ruins of a religious house.
ROWSHAM, a hamlet, in the parish of Wingrave, union of Aylesbury, hundred of Cottesloe, county of Buckingham, 3¾ (N. E. by N.) from the town of Aylesbury; containing 146 inhabitants. Here was formerly a chapel dedicated to St. Lawrence.
ROWSLEY, GREAT, a township, in the parish and union of Bakewell, hundred of High Peak, N. division of the county of Derby, 3½ miles (S. E. by E.) from Bakewell; containing, with part of the township of Alport, 243 inhabitants. The village is situated near the confluence of the rivers Derwent and Wye. A handsome chapel of ease, to which a school-house is attached, was erected by the Duke of Rutland, in 1841.
ROWTON, a township, in the parish of Christleton, union of Great Boughton, Lower division of the hundred of Broxton, S. division of the county of Chester, 3¼ miles (E. S. E.) from Chester; containing 110 inhabitants. The township comprises 840 acres, of which the soil is partly loam and partly clay. It lies near the Chester canal. On Rowton Heath was fought the important battle between the forces of the parliament and those of King Charles, which proved so fatal to the brave Earl of Lichfield, and so disastrous to his royal master; here, also, the Cheshire gentry assembled and declared for a free parliament, on the attempt of Sir George Booth to restore Charles II., in 1659.
ROWTON, a chapelry, in the parish of Abberbury, union of Atcham, hundred of Ford, S. division of Salop, 7 miles (W.) from Shrewsbury. The living is a perpetual curacy; net income, £88; patron, the Duke of Cleveland. A tithe rent-charge of £160 is paid to All Souls' College, Oxford, one of £40 to the Dean and Chapter of Hereford, and of £16 to the vicar of Abberbury. Richard Baxter, the eminent divine, was born here November 12th, 1615.
Rowton, with North Skirlaugh, county of York.—See Skirlaugh, North.
Roxby (St. Mary)
ROXBY (St. Mary), with Risby, a parish, in the union of Glandford-Brigg, N. division of the wapentake of Manley, parts of Lindsey, county of Lincoln, 9 miles (W. S. W.) from Barton-upon-Humber; containing 339 inhabitants. It is bounded on the east by the river Ancholme, and comprises about 4000 acres; the substratum abounds with stone of good quality, which is found near the surface in the higher grounds, and quarried for building, and for making drains. The living is a vicarage, valued in the king's books at £6. 3. 4.; patron, R. C. Elwes, Esq.: the vicarial tithes have been commuted for £420, and there is a glebe of 123 acres. The church is an ancient structure. Some years since, a tessellated pavement was found, about seven yards square; also some fragments of red and yellow plaster, bones of oxen, &c. On a farm near the church is a thermal spring.
Roxby, with Pickhill.—See Pickhill.
ROXBY, a chapelry, in the parish of Hinderwell, union of Whitby, E. division of the liberty of Langbaurgh, N. riding of York, 11½ miles (W. N. W.) from Whitby; containing 183 inhabitants. This place, in the Domesday survey called Rozebi, was formerly the property of the Boynton family, who had a considerable mansion here, and in the reign of Henry V. founded a chapel of ease to the rectory of Hinderwell, of which they were patrons. The chapelry is situated in the western part of the parish, and comprises an area of 2410 acres of good arable, meadow, and pasture; the scenery is finely varied, and enriched with woodlands and plantations. The village consists chiefly of detached houses built on a gentle acclivity, and having an open northern aspect. The chapel was rebuilt by the parishioners in 1817, and is a neat structure with a tower.
ROXHAM, a parish, in the union of Downham, hundred of Clackclose, W. division of Norfolk, 3¼ miles (S. E. by S.) from Downham; with 45 inhabitants. The living is a perpetual curacy, annexed to that of Ryston. There are no remains of the church.
Roxton (St. Mary)
ROXTON (St. Mary), a parish, in the hundred of Barford, union and county of Bedford, 4¾ miles (S. W. by S.) from St. Neot's; containing, with Chawson hamlet, 594 inhabitants, of whom 399 are in the township of Roxton. The parish is bounded on the east by the river Ouse. The living is a discharged vicarage, with that of Great Barford united, valued in the king's books at £10; net income, £288; patrons and impropriators, the Master and Fellows of Trinity College, Cambridge. The tithes were commuted for land and a money payment in 1810. There is a place of worship for Independents.
Roxwell (St. Michael)
ROXWELL (St. Michael), a parish, in the union and hundred of Chelmsford, S. division of Essex, 4½ miles (W. N. W.) from Chelmsford; containing 827 inhabitants. The soil is cold and wet, but, under good management, productive; there are numerous springs near the surface, and in the vicinity of Boyton Cross is a stream of water which after rain acquires the force of a torrent. A pleasure-fair is annually held. Here are two flour-mills. The living is a donative, annexed to the perpetual curacy of Writtle: the tithes have been commuted for £1020 payable to New College, Oxford, and £43 payable to an impropriator. The church is a neat edifice of stone, with a belfry turret of wood; the interior is handsome, and contains some interesting monuments, among which is one of marble to Chief Justice Bramston in the reign of Charles II. John Blencowe, in 1774, bequeathed £1200, now producing £82 per annum, for teaching children.