Middlesmoor - Middleton-Hall

Pages 306-310

A Topographical Dictionary of England. Originally published by S Lewis, London, 1848.

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MIDDLESMOOR, a chapelry, in the parish of Kirkby-Malzeard, union of Pateley-Bridge, Lower division of the wapentake of Claro, W. riding of York, 15 miles (W. by N.) from Ripon; containing 1237 inhabitants. The chapelry consists of the townships of Fountains-Earth, Upper Stonebeck, and Down Stonebeck; and extends over a district about twelve miles in length, and computed at 35,705 acres. The hamlet of Middlesmoor is situated upon an eminence; and from the chapelyard is a delightful view of Nidderdale. The surrounding hills are of considerable magnitude and height; the vale is well wooded; the water-springs, which are numerous on the hills, are soft in their quality, and the air is remarkably salubrious and pure. In the different townships are quarries of stone and slate. The living is a perpetual curacy, in the patronage of the Vicar of Kirkby-Malzeard, with a net income of £134: the chapel was consecrated in 1484.


MIDDLESTONE, a township, in the parish of Merrington, union of Auckland, S. E. division of Darlington ward, S. division of the county of Durham, 3½ miles (E. by N.) from Bishop-Auckland; containing 113 inhabitants. It comprises about 870 acres: the Dean and Chapter of Durham have several farms here, which are let out on their tenures.


MIDDLETHORPE, a township, in the parish of St. Mary, Bishophill, Senior, E. division of Ainsty wapentake, union and W. riding of York, 2 miles (S. by W.) from York; containing 126 inhabitants. This township, which is bounded on the east by the navigable river Ouse, comprises about 600 acres of rich land, mostly pasture and meadow: excellent gravel is obtained for the roads. Middlethorpe Hall is a noble mansion; Middlethorpe Lodge stands on elevated ground, from which is a fine view of the city of York and the line of the York and North-Midland railway. The village is pleasantly situated on the bank of the Ouse. Leaden bullets and a steel breast-plate were dug up in 1812.

Middleton, with Smerrill

MIDDLETON, with Smerrill, a chapelry, in the parish of Youlgrave, union of Bakewell, hundred of Wirksworth, S. division of the county of Derby, 3¾ miles (S. S. W.) from Bakewell; containing 323 inhabitants. The manor belonged to the Herthills, and passed with their heiress to the Cockaines; in 1771 it was the joint property of Viscount Howe, and M. Roper, Esq.: its present possessor purchased it from the coheiress of that nobleman. The township comprises 2300 acres of fertile land. Extensive lead-mines are in operation near the village, which is situated on a hill abounding with limestone. Smerrill, a grange, one mile southward, consists only of one farm. The vicarial tithes have been commuted for £21. 13. 4. There are places of worship for Independents and Wesleyans; and a school.

Middleton (St. George)

MIDDLETON (St. George), a parish, in the union of Darlington, S. W. division of Stockton ward, S. division of the county of Durham, 6 miles (E. S. E.) from Darlington; containing 433 inhabitants. This parish, which is bounded on the south by the river Tees, comprises about 3100 acres, and includes the village of Middleton-One-Row and the hamlet of Oak-Tree; the surface is undulated, the soil clay. The scenery is pleasing, more especially by the river side, where the walks are beautiful; and there are fine views of the Cleveland hills. In Middleton-One-Row are a good hotel and some lodging-houses for the accommodation of visiters frequenting Dinsdale spa, in the adjoining parish of Low Dinsdale. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £4; net income, £91; patron, H. A. W. Cox, Esq.: certain impropriate tithes have been commuted for £73. 12. 7., and the incumbent's tithes for £78. 5. 11.; there are 15 acres of glebe. The church is a small structure, consisting of a nave and chancel, and stands on high ground to the south-east of the village of Middleton. The foundations of Pountey's bridge here, thought to have been the first built across the Tees, are still visible: on or near it stood a chapel; within a short distance was a hermitage; and on the brow of the hill immediately above it, is an artificial mound encompassed by a fosse.


MIDDLETON, a parish, in the union of Sudbury, hundred of Hinckford, N. division of Essex, 1 mile (S. by W.) from Sudbury; containing 127 inhabitants. It is bounded on the east by the navigable river Stour, and comprises by measurement 896 acres; the surface is diversified with gently sloping eminences, and the soil, which is of superior quality, is a mixture of light and strong wheat land. There are extensive chalk-pits. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £8; net income, £557; patron and incumbent, the Rev. Oliver Raymond: there are about 40 acres of glebe in the parish. The church is a very ancient structure, with a belfry turret of wood, and has painted-glass windows and two beautiful arches; a new spire was built in 1832, by the rector, who also beautified the interior.


MIDDLETON, a township, in the parish and union of Lancaster, hundred of Lonsdale south of the Sands, N. division of Lancashire, 5¼ miles (W. S. W.) from Lancaster; containing 200 inhabitants. In the reign of Henry III., Hubert de Burgh, Earl of Kent, lord chief justice of England, had a grant of the whole of Wyresdale, with remainder to his heirs: he left two sons, from one of whom descended the Burghs or Borroughs, of Gainsborough; and it is probable that William de Burgh, of Middleton, who died about 1323, was descended also from the chief justice. Sir Edward Neville, of the family of Hornby Castle, held a third of the manor in the reign of Edward III.; having bestowed part of it on Cockersand Abbey, he subsequently held only a sixth part. In the 16th of Henry VII., the manor had passed to the knightly family of Laurence. The township is beautifully situated upon Morecambe bay, and embraces fine views of the Black Combe range of hills, the town of Fleetwood, the coast towards Liverpool, Peel Castle, &c.; it comprises 1574 acres, of which two-thirds are arable, and the remainder meadow and pasture. Middleton Tower, originally erected in 1616 as a landmark, was rebuilt in 1840 in the Elizabethan style, by the proprietor, Edward Dodson Salisbury, Esq. George Marton, Esq., of Capernwray, is lord of the manor, and owner of the great tithes.

Middleton (St. Leonard)

MIDDLETON (St. Leonard), a market-town and parish, in the hundred of Salford, S. division of Lancashire; containing, with the chapelries of Ainsworth and Ashworth, and the townships of Birtle cum Bamford, Hopwood, Great Lever, Pilsworth, and Thornham, 15,488 inhabitants, of whom 7740 are in the town, 6 miles (N. N. E.) from Manchester, 55 (S. E. by S.) from Lancaster, and 192 (N. N. W.) from London. The manor of Middleton belonged at a very remote period to the powerful family of de Lacy, earls of Lincoln, and afterwards passed by marriage to Thomas Plantagenet, Earl of Lancaster; to both of these great families, the local family of Middleton were for a long time feodary. It would appear that the manor subsequently passed to the Kydales and the Bartons; and by the marriage of Sir Ralph Assheton, commonly called the "Black Knight of Ashton," with the last heiress of the Bartons, it was conveyed to the Assheton family. Sir Ralph was successively knight-marshal, and vice-constable of England, the latter office having been conferred upon him for his gallant services under Richard, Duke of Gloucester, afterwards Richard III.; and his devoted attachment to the house of York was rewarded by that sovereign with the grant of divers manors confiscated from the adherents of the house of Lancaster. His grandson, Sir Richard Assheton, was one of the heroes of Flodden-Field, and led to the attack in that memorable battle a body of Middleton bowmen, which formed part of the left wing under the command of Sir Edward Stanley; for his valour on the occasion, he received the honour of knighthood from Henry VIII., and various important privileges were conferred upon his manor of Middleton.

In the 17th century, Ralph Assheton, of Middleton, represented the county of Lancaster in the Long parliament; and commanded, first as colonel and afterwards as general, in the Lancashire forces under the Commonwealth. He led the Middleton club-men against the royalists in the engagement at Bolton-le-Moors; and after the defeat of Charles II. and the Earl of Derby at the battle of Worcester in 1651, the king's troops under Leslie and Middleton, returning into Lancashire, were defeated by Lilburne and Harrison at Middleton, where the royalist generals were taken prisoners. General Assheton, who died in 1650, was succeeded by his son, Ralph Assheton, Esq., who, adopting the course taken by his relative, Sir George Booth, Bart., espoused the cause of Charles II., and was created a baronet after the Restoration. He was succeeded in his title and estates by his son, Ralph, whose nephew, of the same name, succeeded in 1716, and was the last of the male line of this remarkable family. Of his two coheiresses, Mary and Eleanor, the former married Harbord Harbord, Esq., afterwards first lord Suffield; and the manor now belongs to his lordship's grandson, the present peer.

The town is supposed to have derived its name, Middle-town, from its situation midway between Manchester and Rochdale. It is agreeably situated on the road between those places, and is well watered by two confluent streams which have their rise in the immediate neighbourhood. The cotton manufacture, of which this is one of the principal seats, is carried on in its various branches of spinning, weaving, bleaching, and printing; and since the erection of the first cotton-mill, by Mr. John Mercer, about fifty years ago, the importance of the town and the number of its population have rapidly increased. The manufacture of nankeens, ginghams, and check handkerchiefs, is also considerable; and there are manufactories of silk, chiefly for plain sarsnets; and extensive dye-works. Middleton Hall, the ancient seat of the Asshetons, was pulled down in 1845, and on its site large cotton-mills have been erected. In 1846 an act was obtained for lighting the town and vicinity with gas. The Rochdale canal passes about a mile and a half east of Middleton, and the Manchester and Leeds railway runs in the same direction, but nearer to the town; a branch line from the latter, about half a mile in length, extends into the market-place. A royal grant for holding a market on Friday was obtained in 1791, by Lord Suffield, who built a handsome market-house, with commodious shambles for general market purposes and the sale of merchandise. Courts leet are regularly held twice a year, in April and October. In 1812, Middleton, like many other manufacturing towns, suffered much from the spirit of Luddism that then prevailed in Lancashire and the neighbouring counties; serious riots occurred in the town, and the frame-breakers committed many outrages upon the property of the mill-owners. The greatest sufferers by these lawless acts were Messrs. Burton and Sons, whose house was set on fire, and whose mill was very near sharing the same fate. For one whole day, the rioters held the mill in a state of absolute blockade, the ammunition of the soldiery (a company of the Royal Cumberland militia) intrenched within its walls, having been entirely expended; and there was every probability of its soon falling a prey to the fury of the assailants, when by the timely arrival of a troop of the Scots Greys, the premises were saved, and the mob was dispersed in all directions.

The parish comprises about 8000 acres, of which upwards of 2000 are in the township of Middleton, where the surface of the land is undulated. The soil is various, being in some parts a strong clay, and in others a light sandy loam; but whether for corn or pasture, it is considered in every respect excellent: the proportion of arable land to pasture is about four acres to twenty; the crops mostly grown are oats and potatoes. There is an abundance of coal, of which the principal mines are in Thornham and Hopwood. The rivers connected with the parish are, the Irk, anciently written "Yrke," the Roch, the Nadin, the Bradshaw, and the Sudden. Several gentlemen's seats are interspersed through the townships; among those in Middleton township is Langley Hall, once of stone, now a brick pile, to the west of the town. Rhodes Green was the seat of a younger branch of the Hopwoods; the house is a low plain building, at present divided into cottages. Parkfield is the residence of Thomas Ashton, Esq., one of the magistrates of the county.

The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £36. 3. 11½.; net income, about £1000 per annum; patron, Lord Suffield. The church is of great antiquity, but there is no record of the period of its erection; the aisles bear the date 1554: it stands on a gently rising hill, with a fine plantation of trees adjoining. The tower, which is low, is surmounted with an awkward addition of wood. The windows are richly adorned with painted glass, and in the north window are figures representing persons formerly of note in the neighbourhood: the east window was renewed by the rector in 1846. Of the several monuments, the most prominent are those of the Assheton family. At Ainsworth, Ashworth, Birch, and Birtle are separate incumbencies. There are places of worship for Independents, Primitive Methodists, Wesleyans, the Countess of Huntingdon's Connexion, and Swedenborgians. One of the earliest and most important charitable institutions of Middleton, is Queen Elizabeth's free grammar school, founded and endowed by Alexander Nowell, D.D., Dean of St. Paul's, in 1572. Dr. Nowell also founded thirteen small scholarships in Brasenose College, Oxford, for the benefit of this and other schools in the county; these scholarships have lately been reduced to two good ones. The school is also entitled to share in two scholarships founded in the same college by Samuel Radcliffe, D.D., in 1648. President Bradshaw, who sat in judgment on Charles I., received a part of his education in Middleton school, to which he bequeathed £500, to be laid out in the purchase of an annuity for increasing the salaries of the master and usher. In the town and parish are numerous day and Sunday schools for all denominations. For the relief of the poor are, Guest's, Stock's, Catherine Hopwood's, Buckley's, Cook's, Richardson's, and other charities. Dr. William Assheton, prebendary of York and rector of Beckenham, was born at Middleton in 1641: he was the author of several works of great merit, chiefly of a religious and controversial character; and his learning recommended him for an Irish bishopric, and the mastership of Brasenose College, Oxford, both which he refused. Samuel Bamford, the "Lancashire Poet," is also a native of this place.

Middleton, with Houghton and Arbury, in the county of Lancaster.—See Houghton.

MIDDLETON, with Houghton and Arbury, in the county of Lancaster.—See Houghton.

Middleton (St. Mary)

MIDDLETON (St. Mary), a parish, in the union and hundred of Freebridge-Lynn, W. division of Norfolk, 3½ miles (S. E.) from Lynn; containing 867 inhabitants. It is on the road from Lynn to Norwich, and comprises by measurement 3034 acres, of which 1860 are arable, 1070 pasture and meadow, and 70 woodland. The surface is hilly, the soil chiefly clay and marl, and there are quarries of fine carrstone for building. The Lynn and Dereham railway has a station near the village. The living is a discharged vicarage, valued in the king's books at £7; patron, incumbent, and impropriator, the Rev. P. S. Wood, LL.D. The impropriate tithes have been commuted for £432, the vicarial for £313, and £99. 18. are paid to the rector of North Runcton; the glebe contains nearly 12 acres. The church is in the decorated English style, with a lofty embattled tower. There is a place of worship for Wesleyans. In the village is a high mount, probably the site of an ancient castle. In the neighbourhood is Middleton Tower, a mansion of the lords Scales, built in the reign of Henry VII.; and higher up are the remains of Blackborough Priory, in the ruins of which were found, in 1834, three stone and two wooden coffins containing perfect skeletons, some tessellated pavements, a gold seal-ring, &c.


MIDDLETON, a township, in the parish of Cottingham, union of Kettering, hundred of Corby, N. division of the county of Northampton, 2 miles (S. W. by W.) from Rockingham; containing 411 inhabitants. The township is situated on the right bank of the river Welland, and on the Rockingham and Harborough road; it consists of 1774a. 3r. 23p.


MIDDLETON, a township, in the parish and union of Belford, N. division of Bambrough ward and of Northumberland, 1¼ mile (N. N. W.) from Belford; containing 70 inhabitants. It is on the road to Tweedmouth; and a stream here, passes at the distance of about two miles and a half into Waren bay.


MIDDLETON, a tything, in the parish of Longparish, union of Andover, hundred of Wherwell, Andover and N. divisions of the county of Southampton; containing 251 inhabitants.

Middleton (Holy Trinity)

MIDDLETON (Holy Trinity), a parish, in the union and hundred of Blything, E. division of Suffolk, 2¼ miles (E. S. E.) from Yoxford; containing, with the merged parish of Fordley, 599 inhabitants, and comprising 2015a. 2r. 26p. The living is a discharged rectory, with the vicarage of Westleton and rectory of Fordley, and valued in the king's books at £5; patron, H. Packard, Esq. The tithes of Middleton, which were wholly appropriated to Leiston Abbey, and none of which are paid to the incumbent, have been commuted for £373. 17. 6., and the glebe comprises 13 acres; the tithes of Fordley produce £161. The church is of the Norman period. There is a place of worship for Wesleyans.


MIDDLETON, a parish, in the union of West Hampnett, hundred of Avisford, rape of Arundel, W. division of Sussex, 3 miles (E.) from Bognor; containing 100 inhabitants. It is bounded on the south by the English Channel, and has suffered greatly by encroachment of the sea, which has swept away the church, with the greater portion of the village, which at the time of the Domesday survey was situated in the centre of the parish. The living is a discharged rectory, valued in the king's books at £5. 10. 10., and in the patronage of the Crown; net income, £130.

Middleton (St. John the Baptist)

MIDDLETON (St. John the Baptist), a parish, in the union of Tamworth, Tamworth division of the county of Warwick, 4½ miles (S. S. W.) from Tamworth; containing 505 inhabitants. The parish is bounded on the north by a portion of the county of Stafford, and comprises by measurement 3901 acres, the whole of which, with the exception of about 100 acres belonging to the Moxhall estate, is the property of Lord Middleton. The surface is undulated, and the scenery pleasingly varied, and embellished with wood; the soil is light and gravelly, and the greater portion of it arable. Middleton Hall, a seat of Lord Middleton's, is an ancient moated mansion, finely situated, and surrounded by an extensive park. The Birmingham and Fazeley canal passes in the vicinity. The living is a donative; net income, £100; patron and impropriator, Lord Middleton. The church is partly Norman, and partly in the early English style, with a square tower; and contains monuments to Willoughby, the naturalist, and Ridgway, Earl of Londonderry, and also two ancient brasses. The parish gives the title of Baron to the Willoughbys, of Wollaton Hall, near Nottingham.


MIDDLETON, a chapelry, in the parish of KirkbyLonsdale, union of Kendal, Lonsdale ward, county of Westmorland, 3½ miles (N. by E.) from KirkbyLonsdale; containing 275 inhabitants. It comprises 7503 acres, of which about 4000 are common or waste. The living is a perpetual curacy; net income, £100; patron, the Vicar of Kirkby-Lonsdale. The impropriate tithes have been commuted for £300, payable to Trinity College, Cambridge, and the vicarial for £55. The chapel, dedicated to the Holy Ghost, was built at the expense of the inhabitants, in the year 1634, on ground given by Dr. Christopher Bainbridge, a native of the place. A battle is said to have been fought here between the English and the Scots: many human bones have been discovered near the old bridge. A Roman millstone was ploughed up in the township a few years since, on what may be a Roman road between Overborough and Borrow Bridge.

Middleton (St. Andrew)

MIDDLETON (St. Andrew), a parish, in the union of Driffield, Bainton-Beacon division of the wapentake of Harthill, E. riding of York, 8½ miles (N. W.) from Beverley; containing 659 inhabitants. The parish is on the Beverley and Pocklington, and the Market-Weighton and Driffield roads. It comprises by measurement 3600 acres, of which about 80 are pasture, 20 woodland, and the remainder arable; the surface, though not marked with any bold features, is agreeably diversified by swells and plains. There are quarries of chalkstone, which is burnt into lime, and used for building and agricultural purposes; and bricks are made, but not in great quantity. Races are held on a course about four miles in circumference, which extends into some of the adjoining parishes. The village is situated on the acclivity of a valley on the eastern side of the Wolds. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £15. 13. 4.; net income, £917; patron and incumbent, the Rev. John Blanchard: the tithes were commuted at the inclosure, in 1795, for 950 acres of land. The church, which is very ancient, is a neat and commodious edifice: the interior was repewed and beautified by subscription in 1821, and a tower, which superseded a bell turret, was built in 1830. There are places of worship for Primitive Methodists and Wesleyans, and a good parochial school.


MIDDLETON, a parish, in the union and lythe of Pickering, N. riding of York; containing, with the chapelries of Cropton, Lockton, and Rosedale East Side, the townships of Aislaby, Cawthorn, Hartoft, and Wrelton, and the extra-parochial place of Turnhill, 1874 inhabitants, of whom 261 are in the township of Middleton, 1 mile (W. N. W.) from Pickering, on the road to Helmsley. The surface of the parish is undulated, and the scenery beautiful; the soil is various: good stone is obtained for burning into lime. The Whitby and Pickering railway passes through the township of Lockton. The living is a discharged vicarage, valued in the king's books at £10. 11. 8.; net income, £100; patrons and impropriators, the family of Wrangham, and T. Smith, Esq. The church is an ancient edifice with a square tower. There are chapels of ease at Cropton and Lockton, and a separate incumbency at Rosedale.


MIDDLETON, a township, in the parish of Rothwell, Lower division of the wapentake of Agbrigg, W. riding of York, 4 miles (S.) from Leeds; containing 1077 inhabitants. The township comprises about 1700 acres, of which 450 are indigenous wood; it is elevated land commanding extensive views of the surrounding country, and the scenery is richly diversified. Middleton Lodge forms an interesting object in the landscape. The district abounds with coal, and three collieries are in full operation, the most extensive of which has a tramroad to the Brandling wharf at Leeds. There are also quarries of excellent building-stone. A church, for which the site, and the stone and brick for its erection, were given by the Brandling family, was consecrated in September, 1846; it is a handsome structure with a tower and spire, and contains 550 sittings, all open, and of oak. The living is in the Vicar's gift.

Middleton, with Stockhill

MIDDLETON, with Stockhill, a township, in the parish of Ilkley, Upper division of the wapentake of Claro, W. riding of York, 6½ miles (W. N. W.) from Otley; containing 186 inhabitants. This township, including a large portion of Middleton Moor, comprises by computation 2280 acres. Middleton Lodge, the seat of William Middleton, Esq., was for many generations the residence of his ancestors; attached to it is a Roman Catholic chapel.


MIDDLETON-by-Wirksworth, a hamlet, in the parish and hundred of Wirksworth, union of Bakewell, S. division of the county of Derby, 1¼ mile (N. N. W.) from Wirksworth; containing 1031 inhabitants. The township comprises about 1000 acres of land, and has a considerable village, but in a bleak situation, and principally inhabited by miners. There are several quarries of excellent marble, of which great quantities are sent by the High-Peak railway to Cromford, and thence by canal to the celebrated marble-works at Buckland Hollow. A chapel of ease was built in 1844, having 400 sittings, 360 of which are free.

Middleton-Cheney (All Saints)

MIDDLETON-CHENEY (All Saints), a parish, in the union of Banbury, hundred of King's-Sutton, S. division of the county of Northampton, 3 miles (E. by N.) from Banbury; containing 1410 inhabitants, a few of whom are employed in frame-work knitting. In the civil war of the seventeenth century a battle was fought here, in which the army of the parliament was defeated. The parish is situated on the road from Banbury to Brackley, and comprises 1584a. 1r. 17p., of which two-thirds are arable, and the remainder pasture. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £31. 11. 3.; net income, £423, with a house; patrons, the Principal and Fellows of Brasenose College, Oxford: the tithes were commuted for land in 1769. The church has a fine tower and spire, and a rich porch: the spire has been three times struck by lightning, in 1720, 1794, and 1797. There are places of worship for Baptists and Wesleyans; also a national school with a small endowment.


MIDDLETON-GRANGE, an extra-parochial place, in the parish and union of Runcorn, hundred of Bucklow, N. division of the county of Chester, 3½ miles (E. by N.) from Frodsham; comprising 387 acres.


MIDDLETON-HALL, a township, in the parish of Ilderton, union of Glendale, N. division of Coquetdale ward and of Northumberland, 1¾ mile (S.) from Wooler; containing 64 inhabitants. Colonel Hughes, the first of the name who settled at MiddletonHall, was from Wales, and in the time of Cromwell commanded a regiment which is mentioned in the life of General Monk, to whose army the regiment was at one time attached. On quitting the military service, he came to reside at Middleton-Hall, then belonging to the Ratcliffe family, whose estates were forfeited in 1715, and granted by the crown to the Commissioners of Greenwich Hospital, by whom this place was sold some years since to the great grandson of Colonel Hughes, whose family had never ceased to be tenants of it. The township is bounded on the south by the Caldgate water, a small trouting-stream having its rise on the chief of the Cheviot hills. It comprises about 400 acres of arable land, 600 of pasture, and 50 of wood; the soil is a gravelly loam with a whinstone substratum, and the surface varies from undulated ground to mountainous, the latter abounding in black and red grouse. In a peat bog here is a fine seam of shell marl, in working which, a few years since, several red-deer horns were discovered in a perfect state. There are two circular camps upon slight eminences, in view of each other.