Parishes: Stanwick St. John

A History of the County of York North Riding: Volume 1. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1914.

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, 'Parishes: Stanwick St. John', in A History of the County of York North Riding: Volume 1, (London, 1914) pp. 127-134. British History Online [accessed 26 May 2024].

. "Parishes: Stanwick St. John", in A History of the County of York North Riding: Volume 1, (London, 1914) 127-134. British History Online, accessed May 26, 2024,

. "Parishes: Stanwick St. John", A History of the County of York North Riding: Volume 1, (London, 1914). 127-134. British History Online. Web. 26 May 2024,

In this section


Stenuueghe, Stenwege, Steinueges (xi cent.) ; Stanwegg, Steinewegges (xiii cent.) ; Staynwigges (xv cent.) ; Stanwigge (xvii cent.).

Stanwick St. John parish was composed in 1831 of the townships of Stanwick St. John and Aldbrough, together with Caldwell, East Layton and Carkin, which lie to the east separated from the rest of the parish by the parish of Forcett, but Carkin has now been joined to the township of Forcett. The area of the present parish is 5,856 acres of land, of which rather more than half is arable and a large amount pasture. (fn. 1) The subsoil is Yoredale Rocks, the soil loamy and the chief crops raised are wheat, oats, barley and turnips.

The Roman road that runs north from Scotch corner to the Roman station at Piercebridge skirts Aldbrough and forms part of the eastern boundary of the parish. At Lucy Cross a lane starts from 'the Street' and, passing through Aldbrough and between the parks of Carlton and Stanwick, goes to Forcett and on to Caldwell, where it divides, one branch going to Wycliffe, another north-west across the Tees to Winston. The ground gradually rises from 300 ft. above ordnance datum at the Roman road to 440 ft. at Caldwell to the east.

Leland gave the following account of the locality when he visited it:—

There appere great ruines in a valley of a howse or a litle castel at Albruch village, and thereby rennith a bekke. It standith a ii miles south from Perse Bridg on Tese. There appere ruines of like buildinges at Cawdewelle village a ii miles west from Alburcge. Cawdewel is so caullid of a litle font, or spring, by the ruines of the olde place, and so rennith into a bekke half a quarter of a mile of. This bekke rennith thens to Alburcg and a v. miles of into Tese, ripa citer. This bek risith in a marish about a ii. myle southe west above Caldwell. And betwixt thes two villages appere diverse hillettes cast up by hand, and many diches, wherof sum be fillid with water, and some of these dikes appere abowt S. John's, that is paroch chirch to both the aforsaid villages. The dikes and hilles were a campe of men of warre, except menne mighte think they were of ruines of sum olde towne. The more likelihood is that it was a campe of men of warre. (fn. 2)

Camden wrote 'From Cataractonium' [Catterick] 'the military way divides into two branches, the northernmost leading by Caldwell and Aldburgh which last in our language signifies Old-town. What was its antient name I cannot easily guess: it seems by its ruins to have been a large city, and near it is to be seen a ditch running through the little village of Stanwig, for almost eight miles between the Tees and Swale.' (fn. 3) This ditch was already known as Jack Dike in 1580, (fn. 4) and the entrenchments bordering Stanwick Park are called the Jack Dike Arches. The earthworks are, however, probably only the mediaeval inclosure of the park. (fn. 5) There was a small camp by Scots' Dike at Sow Hill near Caldwell. (fn. 6) Objects of the early Iron Age have been found at Stanwick and Langdale.

Aldbrough Green, Stanwick

The church lies on the north side of Stanwick Park. Opposite to it is the manor-house, within which is a plain oak stair of the 16th century and some later panelling. On the first floor is some roughly executed Jacobean plaster work surrounding a fireplace. There is a circular stone dovecote in the garden. Leland wrote 'Mr. Keterick dwellith at Stanewiche having a preaty place.' (fn. 7) Stanwick Park, the seat of the late dowager Duchess of Northumberland, stands in a well-wooded park of about 60 acres in extent, in which is an elaborate system of earthworks. The hall is a classical building, consisting of a central block with an open court to which an east wing was added in 1842. Rain-water pipes in the court bear the dates 1662 and 1842. There are two large gardens, one adjoining the east wing, and the other, with a shrubbery and garden, to the west of the house. It is probably to this house that Lady Oxford refers in her journey to Scotland in 1745 'as a very pretty house, the staircase fitted up with painting, stucco and gilding in a very pretty taste. The best apartments are all up one pair of stairs.' (fn. 8)

About 2 miles to the north-west of Stanwick Church is an isolated portion of the parish with the village of Caldwell. Close to the chapel is a circular stone dovecote. A mile and a quarter south-east of Stanwick is the village of Aldbrough, picturesquely grouped round a large green. The Aldbrough Beck runs through the green and is crossed by a modern carriage road and an earlier narrow bridge of three stone spans 100 yards to the north-east. The village has a modern chapel of ease. At Carlton there is another green and to the north-east of the village is Carlton Park, traversed by the beck. The house has been rebuilt on the site of the previous hall. East Layton had its 'Towne Green,' which was inclosed by the lord of the manor in the 16th century when the Laytons inhabited 'Lonyng House.' (fn. 9) Layton Hall is the residence of Mrs. Maynard Proud.

Of the mill in Aldbrough mentioned at the time of the Domesday Survey (fn. 10) there is record until 1619. (fn. 11) A mill was standing in Caldwell in 1421, (fn. 12) one in Carlton in 1558 (fn. 13) and one in East Layton in 1668 (fn. 14); these are now represented by a mill in Caldwell only.

The following ancient field-names, &c., occur in this parish: Naman's Leazes, Ucker flat, Foxberry, Greystone, Saw Hill, Cote Hill.

There are Wesleyan and United Methodist chapels at Aldbrough and public elementary schools at Aldbrough, Caldwell and East Layton.


STANWICK.—There were two Stanwicks at the time of the Domesday Survey, both soke of Count Alan's 'manor' of Gilling (fn. 15) (q.v.); the overlordship descended to the lords of Richmond. (fn. 16) Of these vills the southernmost, assessed at 1 carucate, must have been absorbed in Gilling by the end of the 13th century, (fn. 17) and was possibly identical with Nether Sedbury in that parish (q.v.). The other vill, composed of 3 carucates, was held before the Conquest by Tor and afterwards by Enisan in demesne under the count. (fn. 18) The manor very shortly passed to the Rollos family, by whom it was held until King Stephen disseised Richard de Rollos for serving the empress and gave his lands to Roald the Constable. Henry II made an arrangement between the two by which Roald was to hold the manor for life with reversion to Richard de Rollos and his heirs. (fn. 19) The Rollos returned to Normandy in the reign of John and their English lands were forfeited and confirmed by the king to Roald the Constable. (fn. 20) The fee of the Cleasbys extended into Stanwick, but in 1314 John de Cleasby granted whatever services he had there to Henry le Scrope, (fn. 21) and the mesne lordship of Stanwick descended to the subsequent lords of Constable Burton (fn. 22) (q.v.).

After the departure of the Rollos Maud de Morville (fn. 23) held part at least of Stanwick in demesne, and in 1222 granted 10 oxgangs to the knights of the Temple, (fn. 24) the gift being confirmed by her granddaughter and successor Avis Marmion (fn. 25) in 1254. (fn. 26) John Marmion was returned in 1316 (fn. 27) as joint lord of the vill with the descendant of Roald, but his right by this time was a mesne lordship, which is not mentioned again and had ceased to exist in 1347–9. (fn. 28)

By 1275–6 the Templars had acquired 2 carucates of land in Stanwick and the remaining carucate was held by the Abbot of Egglestone, who had it of the gift of the mesne lord Roald son of Roald. (fn. 29) These two religious bodies held these lands in 1286–7, (fn. 30) and Egglestone Abbey still had lands in Stanwick in 1307, (fn. 31) but in 1347–9 the Hospitallers, the successors of the knights of the Temple, held the whole 3 carucates of Stanwick (fn. 32) and continued to have some rights there until their dissolution. (fn. 33)

The manor was held under them by the family of Catterick from at least the 15th century. The servant of William Catterick of Aldbrough is mentioned in 1441, (fn. 34) and in 1478 John Catterick died seised of a messuage and 1 carucate which he held of the Knights Hospitallers. He left a son and heir John, (fn. 35) who held them when he died in 1508 or 1509, leaving a son and heir William, (fn. 36) who died in possession of the manor or capital messuage. In 1556 Anthony son and heir of William, (fn. 37) having an idiot son Thomas, (fn. 38) settled the property on such sons as should be born to him subsequently in tail-male, with successive remainders to his brothers George and Francis and their male issue. Anthony held the whole 3 carucates of Stanwick, one of Henry Lord Scrope as of his fee of Roald, a second of the queen as of her castle of Richmond, and a third of the heirs of Matthew de Carkin, (fn. 39) who held under the Templars in 1286–7. Anthony had no issue after the above settlement, and on his death in 1585 (fn. 40) his property went to his brother George. The Cattericks held Stanwick till 1638, when Anthony Catterick conveyed it to Hugh Smithson, (fn. 41) son of Eleanor daughter and heir of George Catterick of Stanwick and ancestor of the Smithsons, Dukes and Earls of Northumberland. Hugh Smithson was created a baronet in 1660 and was succeeded in 1670 by his son Jerome, who died in 1684, leaving a son and heir Hugh. Sir Hugh, the third baronet, left a grandson and heir Hugh, who married Elizabeth, descendant of the ancient family of Percy and daughter and heir of Algernon Duke of Somerset and Earl of Northumberland. (fn. 42) Hugh succeeded his father-in-law as Earl of Northumberland in 1749–50 and changed the name of Smithson for that of Percy. After many other honours George III made him Earl Percy and Duke of Northumberland in 1766. He was succeeded in 1786 by his son Hugh, (fn. 43) who died in 1818, leaving a son and heir Hugh. Hugh's brother Algernon became duke in 1847 and died without issue in 1865, when his cousin George, son of Algernon first Earl of Beverley, succeeded him. (fn. 44) His son Algernon George became duke two years later, (fn. 45) and dying in 1899 was succeeded by his son Henry George, (fn. 46) the present owner of Stanwick.

Smithson, baronet.Or a battled chief azure with three golden suns therein.

Percy, Duke of Northumberland. Azure a fesse indented or.

ALDBROUGH (Aldeburne, xi cent.; Odeberne, Haudeburg, Aldeburgh, xiii cent.), where Tor had held a 'manor' and 8 carucates before the Conquest, was in the hands of Count Alan at the time of the Domesday Survey, (fn. 47) and was still held of Richmond Castle in 1630. (fn. 48) Enisan was the under-tenant in 1086. (fn. 49) In 1392 the Archbishop of York confirmed to St. Mary's Abbey, York, their possessions in Aldbrough and Caldwell, among other places, and one third of the tithe of sheaves from the demesne lands of 'Nisard' Musard, then deceased. (fn. 50) Aldbrough, like Stanwick (q.v.), passed from Enisan partly to the constables of Richmond and the Scropes (fn. 51) and partly to the Rollos. (fn. 52) The constables held 4 of the 8 carucates in Aldbrough in demesne as one manor, which Roald son of Alan the younger granted to the king, who in 1247 gave it to Peter of Savoy, with free warren in its demesne lands, saving to his family their mesne lordship of the other 4 carucates. (fn. 53) Peter of Savoy died in 1269, and Henry III then gave the manor to the Earl of Richmond in exchange for the manor of Wissett (co. Suffolk). (fn. 54) From this time the manor follows the descent of the manor of Catterick (fn. 55) (q.v.) until 1619, when Sir Francis Barrington sold it to Humphrey Wharton and his heirs. (fn. 56) The Whartons, as lords of the manor, appointed gamekeepers for Aldbrough in 1726–7 (fn. 57) and 1753 (fn. 58) and still possessed it in 1796. (fn. 59) Like Stanwick, it is now in the possession of the Duke of Northumberland. In 1538 Ralph Carr, merchant of Newcastle-on-Tyne, was said to have died seised of the 'manor'—no doubt the capital messuage. (fn. 60)

In 1281 the Earl of Richmond and his heirs had a grant of a weekly market on Tuesday at Aldbrough and a yearly fair there on the vigil, feast and morrow of St. Michael, (fn. 61) but there is no further mention of this market or fair. Peter of Savoy granted Aldbrough to Harsculph de Cleasby for life, (fn. 62) and Harsculph seems to have been called locally 'de Aldbrough.' Ivo son of Harsculph de Aldbrough is mentioned in 1286 (fn. 63); Ivo de Aldbrough was Constable of Barnard Castle in 1326, (fn. 64) and John son of Ivo de Aldbrough and Sybil his wife held lands here in 1375. (fn. 65)

CALDWELL (pronounced and often spelled Cawdwell until the 19th century) belonged to the fee of Count Alan at the time of the Domesday Survey, (fn. 66) and continued to be held of the lords of Richmond. (fn. 67) Tor held a 'manor' and 6 carucates in Caldwell before the Conquest, afterwards Enisan was tenant under the count. (fn. 68) Enisan's fee passed to the constables of Richmond and ultimately to the Scropes of Bolton, who held Caldwell in demesne. (fn. 69) When Emanuel Scrope Earl of Sunderland died in 1630 his estates were divided among his illegitimate children, (fn. 70) and the manor of Caldwell came to Earl Rivers and his wife. (fn. 71) Afterwards, however, it passed to the descendants of Mary eldest daughter of Emanuel Lord Scrope, who was married to Charles Duke of Bolton. Jane, the eldest daughter of the Duke of Bolton and Mary, was married to John (Egerton) Earl of Bridgewater. (fn. 72) On the death of Francis third Duke of Bridgewater the earldom and the entailed Bridgewater estates, among which were the Yorkshire manors, descended to General John William Egerton, son of John Egerton, Bishop of Durham, and grandson of the third earl. (fn. 73) The earldom of Bridgewater is now extinct and the entailed estates have descended to the Earls Brownlow. John first Earl Brownlow married in 1810 Sophia second daughter and coheir of Sir Abraham Hume, bart., by Amelia sister of Francis last Earl of Bridgewater. Their son becoming heir to the Bridgewater estates, by royal licence assumed in 1849 the surname of Egerton. (fn. 74) He died in 1851, leaving a son John William Spencer Brownlow, who in 1853 succeeded his grandfather as Earl Brownlow and died in 1867, leaving a brother and heir Adelbert Wellington Brownlow, the present lord of the manor of Caldwell.

In CARLTON (Cartun, 1086; North Carleton, xvi cent.) at the time of the Domesday Survey there were 2 carucates at geld 'inland' to Aldbrough. It belonged to Count Alan, (fn. 75) and continued to be held of the lords of Richmond. (fn. 76)

Geoffrey Scales held half a knight's fee in Carlton and Barforth (fn. 77) in 1211–12, and Roald was said to be mesne lord in 1286–7, (fn. 78) probably as lord of Aldbrough. (fn. 79)

Geoffrey Pigot held 2 carucates of the vill in 1286–7, the remaining carucate being held, half by John de Layton of Hanlath de Halnaby, half by Hanlath of Roald. (fn. 80) In 1316 his son (fn. 81) Ranulph held the vill, (fn. 82) and in 1334 Edward III granted free warren in Carlton to him and his heirs. (fn. 83) The Pigots of Clotherham held Carlton till 1503, when Ranulph Pigot died, leaving co-heirs Margaret, Joan and Elizabeth, daughters of his brother Thomas. (fn. 84) Margaret wife of Sir James Metcalfe, kt., of Nappa, (fn. 85) died in possession of the manor 3 February 1530–1, her heir being her son Christopher, aged sixteen. (fn. 86) Sir Christopher Metcalfe conveyed the manor in 1564 to George Catterick, (fn. 87) whose grandson (fn. 88) John Catterick sold it in 1667 to George Witham (fn. 89) of Cliffe in Manfield (q.v.). Thomas Pulleine, Master of the Stud to William III and Sheriff of Yorkshire in 1696 and 1703, purchased Carlton Hall from the Withams. (fn. 90) Wingate Pulleine held the manor in 1728 and 1734, (fn. 91) and Henry Pulleine had four men-servants here in 1780. (fn. 92) It is now in the possession of the Duke of Northumberland.

PULLEINE of Carlton. Azure a bend cotised argent with three scallops gules thereon and a chief or with three martlets sable therein.

Three carucates in EAST LAYTON (Latone, Laton, xi–xvcent.) were soke of Count Alan's manor of Gilling at the time of the Domesday Survey, (fn. 93) and the overlordship continued to belong to the lords of Richmond. (fn. 94)

Layton of East Layton. Argent a fesse between six crosslets fitchy sable.

Before the Conquest Torphin held Layton; afterwards Bodin held 3 carucates there of the count. Bodin's land descended to the Fitz Hughs, (fn. 95) and part of East Layton was afterwards always held by the family of Layton of the lords of Ravensworth. (fn. 96)

There were 3 more carucates of land in Layton which at some time became part of the fee of the family of Rye, lords of Brignall (q.v.), whose heiress Margery brought it to the family of Charles in 1226–7. (fn. 97) The latter were returned as mesne lords in 1286–7, and in 1386 Richard le Scrope, probably as lord of Brignall, claimed wardship in East Layton, (fn. 98) though in 1375 both the Laytons, East and West, were returned among knights' fees belonging to the manor of Crakehall, (fn. 99) a possession of the Nevills of Raby, from whom it descended to Ralph Earl of Westmorland. (fn. 100)

A branch of the family of Layton are the first recorded under-tenants. There was a Thomas son of Michael de Layton, marshal, in the 13th century. (fn. 101) In 1259–60 lived Alan de East Layton, dead in 1273, whose son John (fn. 102) held 3 carucates in East Layton in 1286–7. (fn. 103) Thomas son of John (fn. 104) was returned in 1316 with three others as joint lord of East and West Layton. (fn. 105) In 1332 Thomas de Layton paid the subsidy in East Layton, (fn. 106) and in the following year obtained a grant of free warren in Layton to himself and his heirs. (fn. 107) In 1347–9 John de Layton of Barforth held East Layton (fn. 108); his daughter Maud married John Cleburn, and their son John was heir in 1386 (fn. 109); shortly afterwards Nicholas de Layton and his parcenaries held East and West Layton (fn. 110) perhaps as lessees during the minority of the heir.

In 1428 John de Layton was lord, (fn. 111) and as John Layton of Sproxton died seised in 1461, leaving a son and heir John, a chaplain. (fn. 112) Elizabeth, married to Henry Pudsey, (fn. 113) was daughter and heir of John Layton, but East Layton must have been settled on the Laytons of Sproxton in tail-male, for they retained it until the 16th century. They settled at Sexhow in Cleveland at the close of the 14th century, (fn. 114) and became possessed later of estates at Skutterskelfe (fn. 115) in Hutton Rudby parish.

In 1527–8 John Layton of Sproxton conveyed the manor of East Layton to Sir Thomas Wentworth of West Bretton, his heirs and assigns, (fn. 116) evidently as trustee, and he in 1530 granted it to William Layton (of Sproxton) and his brother Robert Layton (of Skutterskelfe), their heirs and assigns. Robert died, and William thereupon settled it on himself for life, with remainder to Robert son of the said Robert and his heirs. In 1567, however, Robert son of William Layton of Sproxton claimed the manor, evidently by virtue of the previous settlement, against Thomas Layton (of Skutterskelfe), who seems to represent the interest of Robert Layton; arbitrators decided that £400 should be given by the one to the other claimant. But 'both the said parties were very desirous to pay, but not to depart with the land,' whereupon the following equitable arbitration was made, confirming the previous alienation by William: Robert Layton of Sproxton came to the land as heir to his father, but Thomas was to have it to himself and his heirs and pay Robert £4,000. (fn. 117) This Thomas seems to have been head of the family of Layton of Sexhow and Skutterskelfe, the estates of Skutterskelfe having come into the family by the marriage of his father with the heiress of the Linleys. He died in 1584, leaving a son and heir Charles, (fn. 118) but East Layton again became the possession of a younger member of the family. In 1589 a John Layton of Sexhow was lord, and granted the manor to Robert Meynell on condition that for eight years he should pay £50 yearly. Since Robert did not fulfil the condition, John by indenture 19 January 1600–1 and by his will 26 March 1601 granted the manor to his relative, the above Charles Layton. He died the same year, (fn. 119) and Charles Layton died seised in 1617, leaving a son and heir Thomas, aged twentythree, who had been knighted three years previously. (fn. 120) In 1646–7 Sir Thomas and his son Thomas Layton (fn. 121) and in 1652 Thomas Layton and Robert and Brian Layton made settlements of the manor. (fn. 122) Mary daughter and heiress of Sir Thomas married Sir Henry Foulis of Ingleby in Cleveland, (fn. 123) and in 1668 Robert Layton conveyed East Layton to their son David. (fn. 124) Robert made another conveyance in 1672, (fn. 125) but David Foulis was again a party to a deed concerning the manor in 1677. (fn. 126) In 1703 Robert Layton of Norwich brought a suit against Sir James Brookes, bart., whose father Sir John Brookes had obtained possession of East Layton by virtue of a mortgage made to him by the Laytons, and had conveyed his title to Sir James Brookes of Skelton, his eldest son. (fn. 127) The result of this suit is not recorded, but the main branch of the Yorkshire family of Layton had become extinct at the close of the 17th century. (fn. 128) Bridget, daughter of Sir Thomas Layton and co-heiress of her brother Charles, married in 1671 Thomas Frewen, and to them and their descendants the Yorkshire estates of the Laytons came. (fn. 129) Among these, however, East Layton does not seem to have been included, for in 1770 John Jenkins and Honora his wife conveyed Skelton, East Layton, &c., to Samuel Manley. (fn. 130) By a deed of 1784 Henry Brewster Darley and Edward Tomkinson conveyed the manor of East Layton to the Rev. William Dade and Peter Robinson, (fn. 131) son of George Robinson. Peter Robinson divided the estate by his will between Thomas Barker and William son of John Colling of Walworth, and died in 1799. William Colling left the estate to John Colling for life, and afterwards to Thomas Allison. (fn. 132) Thomas Barker and Elizabeth his wife conveyed the manor in 1830 to George Allison, (fn. 133) and in 1842 it was purchased by Edward Rounthwaite Kemp from Thomas Allison. (fn. 134) Mrs. Maynard Proud, the heiress of Edward Rounthwaite Kemp, married first Charles Septimus Maynard, and secondly John Proud, (fn. 135) and now holds the manor.


The church of ST. JOHN BAPTIST, almost entirely rebuilt in 1868, consists of a chancel 14 ft. 3 in. by 34 ft. 3 in. with north vestry, nave 58 ft. 4 in. by 19 ft. with a south aisle 11 ft. 4 in. wide, and a porch and tower 12 ft. 8 in. by 13 ft. 6 in., inside measurements.

The pointed chancel arch of two chamfered orders rests on semicircular shafts having octagonal moulded capitals, one of which appears to be original but re-worked and of the 13th century. The chancel roof is of modern deal, and in the north wall of the chancel are a modern vestry door, a three-light early 16th-century square-headed window, two modern aumbries and a modern recess containing a much-worn female figure in sandstone. The modern east window is two-centred, of three trefoiled lights with flowing tracery. The south wall has a lancet window with a rear drop arch under which is a modern piscina of 13th-century style, three modern sedilia in the same style divided by shafts, another similar lancet and a three-light square-headed window of domestic character. The priest's door has a segmental arch and a modern square-headed low-side window to the west of it.

The nave roof is higher than the chancel, but of similar low pitch and design. On the south is an arcade of four bays with pointed arches of two chamfered orders and hood resting on octagonal piers with capitals and bases which appear to be late 13thcentury material re-tooled. The tower arch is of early 13th-century style. In the north wall are three modern two-light cinquefoiled tracery windows of different designs in the style of the 14th century.

The aisle has a pointed three-light window of the late 13th century in the east wall, and in the south are a very late 13th-century trefoiled piscina re-tooled, a modern aumbry, a window blocked up behind the organ, and two three-light trefoiled modern decorated windows with two-centred segmental heads. The doorway, of late 13th-century date, has a two-centred arch entirely re-tooled. In the west wall is a modern lancet window.

The tower has a large lancet window at the west end, partly old.

The exterior of the chancel has a projecting parapet and a small chamfered plinth. On the south wall is a plain string under the windows stopping on each side of the single buttress which is between the two lancet windows; there are no labels. The east wall has one square buttress at each angle, a low chamfered plinth, a gable cross, and a hood mould, chamfered above and hollow-chamfered below, running round the window. On the north side is a buttress in five stages and there is a label to the three-light 16th-century window.

The vestry, entered by a doorway on the east side, has no angle buttresses.

The north wall of the nave has a projecting parapet and low chamfered plinth; there is one square buttress at each angle and two similar buttresses divide the wall into three bays.

The tower is in three stages with an embattled parapet and clasping angle buttresses of four stages extending only the height of the first stage. There is a modern external semi-octagonal turret on the north side containing the stairs, and the top stage is lighted on all sides by windows of two lights with octagonal dividing shafts. The west side has a lancet in the lowest stage and there is a shoulder-headed window in the west and south walls of the middle stage.

The aisle has projecting parapets. In the porch are some coffin-slabs and 12th-century architectural details, placed there at the rebuilding; it has diagonal buttresses at the angles and a moulded plinth. The external doorway is of two hollow-chamfered orders without capitals, and the inner doorway is of the 12th century, re-tooled and rebuilt, consisting of two chamfered orders, the inner continuous and the outer resting on the moulded capitals of shafts with bases. In the south wall of the aisle are also fragments of early carvings and one buttress of five stages east of the easternmost window. The window in the east wall has two chamfered orders and a label with 13th-century masked stops.

Amongst the monuments in the church are four recumbent effigies. One of these on the ledge of the east window in the south aisle is that of a lady with joined hands, the features being badly mutilated. There are two effigies much alike on the sills of windows in the south aisle, apparently of civilians. There is another of a woman in a recess in the north wall of the chancel. At the east end of the south aisle is the large tomb of Sir Hugh Smithson of Stanwick, who died in 1670, and his wife Dorothy Rawsthorne of Plaistow in Essex, who died in 1691. The alabaster figure of Sir Hugh leans on his left elbow on a pillow. He wears a wig and is clad in armour, holding his sword in the left hand; a helmet is standing by his head. The feet rest against his crest, a demi-lion gules coming out of a crown or and holding a sun. At the feet of the marble figure of his wife is a demi-lion coming out of a crown holding the Rawsthorne castle. The base of the tomb is of white marble, and above it is black marble representing hangings under a slab of the same colour. At the foot is a shield with the arms: Smithson, quartered with 2, on a fesse engrailed three quatrefoils, for Catterick, 3, checky in a border; impaling three roses gules. There are two shields partly coloured at the west side; the first has the arms of Anthony Smithson impaling Barkham. The other is quarterly of six, the first three quarters as in the shield at the foot, the fourth a bend ermine cotised between six martlets, the fifth a fesse between three pears and the sixth Gules a bull passant, impaling Sable a cheveron between three stars. Above the tomb is a later inscription to these two persons, with a shield above it of Smithson impaling Rawsthorne.

South of the chancel is a mural monument to Anthony Smithson, the son of the above, who died in 1688, and his wife Susanna, daughter of Sir Edward Barkham of South Acre in Norfolk, who died in 1674, with a shield of the arms of Smithson differenced with a molet impaling Argent three pales gules with a cheveron or over all, for Barkham. Opposite is one to Hugh Smithson, who died in 1729. On the north wall of the nave is a brass plate to Elizabeth widow of Anthony Catterick, 1591. She was daughter of Roland Tempest of Hornsett, Durham. At the end, cut in Roman letters, is 'cuius animae deus misereatur.'

There are three bells, all by Samuel Smith of York: no. 1 inscribed 'Venite exultemus Domino 1677, SS. Ebor'; no. 2 'Gloria in altissimis deo 1677, SS. Ebor'; and no. 3 'Glora in excelsis deo 1685, ih, pw churchwardens SS. Ebor.'

The plate consists of an old chalice with only the lower part of the maker's mark tm legible—it is chased with a band and thistle ornament, a paten of the same date without any mark, a large pewter flagon, a modern plated flagon and flat paten.

The registers begin in 1667.


The church in Aldbrough mentioned in 1086 (fn. 136) must have been the church of St. John's Stanwick, as no other church is mentioned in any ancient records. Probably Aldbrough was the head of the Saxon parish, and lost its prestige in its decay. Alan son of Roald the Constable granted all his right in the church of St. John to the abbey of St. Agatha, (fn. 137) and this grant was confirmed by Henry II. (fn. 138) Pope Honorius III (1216–27) also granted that the abbey should have the church to their own uses save the provision of 12 marks to the vicar for the time being. The Archdeacon of Richmond confirmed the nomination by the abbey of Geoffrey a clerk as vicar; but the official of the Archbishop of York came to the church with armed men, ejected the priest and instituted Master Lawrence de Topcliffe. Lawrence being inside held the church like a fortress, and did not allow access to the parishioners, it was pleaded; but the canons had to confess that, they and certain laymen having approached the church, one of their number let fly an arrow at the crossbow-man in the bell-tower of the church, who, stunned with the blow, fell from the tower, broke his neck and expired. They said, however, that their abbot was away when they did it and they placed themselves under the protection of the pope, appealing from the archbishop's excommunication. (fn. 139) Walter Archbishop of York in 1228 passed sentence; for homicide, arson and sacrilege he deprived them of all right in the church of Stanwick, but wishing to act mercifully towards them he granted them instead the tithes of sheaves of Barton, Brettanby, Layton, Cleasby and Barforth, reserving to himself the advowson. (fn. 140) The abbot finally acquiesced, (fn. 141) and in 1230 the archbishop recited that the abbot and convent had granted him the patronage and that he granted the church—as a prebend of Ripon—to Master Lawrence de Topcliffe. (fn. 142) In 1365 the vicar, Henry Greathead, petitioned the pope, saying that 'the value of the rectory containing as the parish does seven scattered and well-peopled townships exceeds 100 marks, out of which a small portion is assigned to the vicar, who is in such fear of the said canon that he cannot safely meet him in the city or diocese of York.' The archdeacon was ordered by the pope to inform himself and make order for assignment of a fit portion for the vicar. (fn. 143)

The rectory or prebend (fn. 144) came to the Crown when the collegiate church of Ripon was dissolved. The mansion-house in Ripon was sold by Edward VI, (fn. 145) and the prebend was granted to the Dean and Chapter of Ripon in 1604, (fn. 146) and in 1608 to Francis Philips and Richard Moore, their heirs and assigns. (fn. 147) The 'hundred of the prebend' was said in 1609 to be within the whole parish of Stanwick and chapelry of Cleasby. (fn. 148)

In 1622 the advowson was conveyed by Anthony Calcott and Margaret his wife to Humphrey Wharton, (fn. 149) and has ever since been held by his descendants. The living is now a vicarage with Caldwell annexed in the gift of Henry Anthony Wharton of Skelton Castle (q.v.).

Chapels were built at Aldbrough and Caldwell in the late 12th or early 13th century, and Geoffrey Abbot of St. Agatha's granted Roald son of Alan the Constable and his men a perpetual chantry there. Roald and his heirs were to maintain the chaplains and on seven days every year (Christmas Day, Purification of the Virgin, Palm Sunday, Easter Day, Whit Sunday, Nativity of St. John the Baptist and Ascension Day) the men of these chapelries and the chaplains were to attend at the mother-church, the chapels being closed; in Lent the parishioners were to go to the mother-church for confession and all sacraments were to be administered at Stanwick. (fn. 150)

The present church of ST. PAUL at Aldbrough was erected in 1890 as a chapel of ease to the parish church, and in 1844 a chapel of ease was built at Caldwell by the dowager Countess of Bridgewater. East Layton chapelry is mentioned in 1619, (fn. 151) but the present chapel of ease to Stanwick was erected in 1895 by Mrs. Maynard Proud. There was a chantry to the Virgin in the parish church in 1542. (fn. 152) The 'Beggar Tithe' in Caldwell belonged to St. Martin's Priory at Richmond. (fn. 153) The chapter of Stanwick is mentioned in the early 13th century. (fn. 154)


By deed dated 22 March 1844 the Right Hon. Charlotte Catherine Anne Countess of Bridgewater above mentioned gave a sum of £304 11s. 4d. consols as a stipend for the master of the school established at Caldwell. The stock is held by the official trustees, producing an annual income of £7 12s.

An annual sum of £2 is received for the use of the poor of the township of Aldbrough, under the title of Towry's Charity, out of a farm in Aldbrough, which is understood to have been originally made as a consideration for carrying a small stream of water through the farm.

An annual payment of £1 10s. is made by Miss Charlotte Starkey in respect of a house and shop in Petergate, York, in accordance with a gift by Ann Cass in 1696, and a sum of £1 a year is paid by Miss Easton of West Layton out of a close in the township known as Mary Close in respect of a gift by Robert Leach in 1712. These sums are distributed in money to the poor of East Layton in the parishes of Forcett and Stanwick St. John.


  • 1. Statistics from Bd. of Agric. (1905).
  • 2. Itin. (ed. Lucy Toulmin Smith), iv, 27.
  • 3. Britannia (ed. Gough), iii, 25.
  • 4. Exch. Dep. Trin. 22 Eliz. no. 3, 'Jacke Diche.'
  • 5. V.C.H. Yorks. ii, 55.
  • 6. Ibid.
  • 7. Itin. (ed. L. T. Smith), iii, 31.
  • 8. Portland MSS. (Hist. MSS. Com.), vi (4), 184.
  • 9. Exch. Spec. Com. 21 Eliz. no. 2629.
  • 10. Dom. Bk. Fac. 24.
  • 11. Feet of F. Yorks. Trin. 17 Jas. I.
  • 12. Chan. Inq. p.m. 9 Hen. V, no. 27.
  • 13. Yorks. Fines (Yorks. Arch. Soc.), i, 220.
  • 14. Feet of F. Yorks. Mich. 20 Chas. II.
  • 15. Dom. Bk. Fac. 23, 23b.
  • 16. Kirkby's Inq. (Surt. Soc.), 170, 334; Rentals and Surv. (P.R.O.), R. 754.
  • 17. Kirkby's Inq. (Surt. Soc.), 170. There was then but one Stanwick, composed of only 3 carucates.
  • 18. Dom. Bk. Fac. 23b.
  • 19. See Skeeby in Easby par.
  • 20. Cur. Reg. R. 46, m. 13.
  • 21. Feet of F. Yorks. Mich. 8 Edw. II, no. 12.
  • 22. Lay Subs. R. bdle. 211, no. 68.
  • 23. See Manfield.
  • 24. Feet of F. Yorks. Hil. 6 Hen. III, no. 21.
  • 25. See Manfield.
  • 26. Feet of F. Yorks. Hil. 38 Hen. III, no. 30.
  • 27. Kirkby's Inq. (Surt. Soc.), 334.
  • 28. When the Scropes were mesne lords of the whole 3 carucates (Lay Subs. R. bdle. 211, no. 23).
  • 29. Hund. R. (Rec. Com.), i, 122.
  • 30. Kirkby's Inq. (Surt. Soc.), 170.
  • 31. Feet of F. Yorks. East. 31 Edw. I, no. 30.
  • 32. Lay Subs. R. bdle. 211, no. 23.
  • 33. See below.
  • 34. Harl. Roll G. 23.
  • 35. Rentals and Surv. (P.R.O.), R. 754.
  • 36. Chan. Inq. p.m. 24 Hen. VII, no. 5.
  • 37. Ibid. (Ser. 2), xciii, 44.
  • 38. Yorks. Arch. Journ. xix (1), 73.
  • 39. Chan. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), ccxi, 169.
  • 40. Ibid.
  • 41. Feet of F. Yorks. East. 14 Chas. I.
  • 42. G.E.C. Baronetage, iii, 101–2.
  • 43. G.E.C. Peerage, vi, 95.
  • 44. Ibid. 96.
  • 45. Ibid. 97.
  • 46. Lodge, Peerage.
  • 47. Dom. Bk. Fac. 24.
  • 48. Chan. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), cccclxiii, 18.
  • 49. Dom. Bk. Fac. 24.
  • 50. Cal. of Papal Letters, v, 3. For Enisan see Constable Burton, Fingall par.
  • 51. Kirkby's Inq. (Surt. Soc.), 169; Chan. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), ccxxxiv, 64.
  • 52. Cur. Reg. R. 46, m. 13.
  • 53. Cal. Chart. R. 1226–57, p. 327. For early charters dealing with Aldbrough and its tenants see doc. in custody of D. and C. of Westm. nos. 1373, 1390, 1421, 1424, 1434.
  • 54. Assize R. 1057, m. 33 d.
  • 55. Chan. Inq. p.m. 15 Edw. III (1st nos.), no. 43; Feet of F. Yorks. East. 32 Hen. VI, no. 48; Pat. 1 Mary, pt. v, m. 31; 13 Jas. I, pt. xiii, no. 8.
  • 56. Feet of F. Yorks. Trin. 17 Jas. I.
  • 57. Quarter Sess. Rec. (N. R. Rec. Soc.), viii, 176.
  • 58. Ibid. ix, 224.
  • 59. Feet of F. Yorks. East. 36 Geo. III.
  • 60. Chan. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), lx, 98. The Wawnes of Aldbrough held the capital messuage in 1613 (ibid, dxiv, 17; see Eppleby, Gilling par.).
  • 61. Cal. Chart. R. 1257–1300, p. 256.
  • 62. Yorks. Inq. (Yorks. Arch. Soc.), i, 224.
  • 63. De Banco R. East. 14 Edw. I, no. 62, m. 31. He was defendant in a plea of land in Aldbrough, and as he is not mentioned in the list of tenants in Kirkby's inquest was probably son of the lessee.
  • 64. Cal. Pat. 1323–7, p. 622.
  • 65. Feet of F. Yorks. Mich. 49 Edw. III, no. 8.
  • 66. Dom. Bk. Fac. 24.
  • 67. Chan. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), xiii, 116.
  • 68. Dom. Bk. Fac. 24.
  • 69. See Constable Burton Manor; Feet of F. Div. Co. Hen. III, no. 62; Kirkby's Inq. (Surt. Soc.), 168; Feet of F. Yorks. East. 5 Edw. III, no. 19; Chan. Inq. p.m. 10 Edw. III (1st nos.), no. 47; Close, 20 Edw. III, pt. i, m. 1; Chan. Inq. p.m. 5 Hen. IV, no. 25; 9 Hen. V, no. 27; 37 Hen. VI, no. 31; (Ser. 2), lxxxviii, 30; Yorks. Fines (Yorks. Arch. Soc.), i, 190; ii, 192; iii, 156; Feet of F. Div. Co. Trin. 4 Chas. I.
  • 70. See Castle Bolton.
  • 71. Feet of F. Yorks. Mich. 28 Chas. II; see Castle Bolton.
  • 72. G.E.C. Peerage, ii, 21.
  • 73. Ibid. 23.
  • 74. Ibid. 40.
  • 75. Dom. Bk. Fac. 24.
  • 76. Chan. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), lii, 37.
  • 77. q.v. Forcett par.
  • 78. Kirkby's Inq. (Surt. Soc.), 169.
  • 79. Ibid. 334.
  • 80. Ibid. 169. The lords of Halnaby still had services in Carlton in 1410 (Feet of F. Yorks. Trin. 11 Hen. IV, no. 22).
  • 81. Foster, Visit. of Yorks. 234.
  • 82. Kirkby's Inq. (Surt. Soc.), 334.
  • 83. Chart. R. 8 Edw. III, no. 1.
  • 84. See Foster, Visit. of Yorks. 234, 302; Chan. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), lvi, 53.
  • 85. Chan. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), lvi, 53.
  • 86. Ibid. lii, 37. Her husband retained the manor for life by courtesy.
  • 87. Yorks. Fines (Yorks. Arch. Soc.), i, 289.
  • 88. Chan. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), ccxxxiv, 64; Recov. R. East. 14 Chas. I, rot. 23. George Catterick had a son Anthony, whose son John left Mary his daughter and heir.
  • 89. Feet of F. Yorks. East. 19 Chas. II.
  • 90. Burke, Landed Gentry (1906).
  • 91. Quarter Sess. Rec. (N. R. Rec. Soc.), viii, 182, 204.
  • 92. Yorks. Arch. Journ. xiv, 65.
  • 93. Dom. Bk. Fac. 23b.
  • 94. Chan. Inq. p.m. 1 Edw. IV, no. 38.
  • 95. Kirkby's Inq. (Surt. Soc.), 168; see Kirkby Ravensworth Manor.
  • 96. De Banco R. 501, m. 360.
  • 97. Feet of F. Yorks. Hil. 11 Hen. III, no. 2.
  • 98. De Banco R. 501, m. 360.
  • 99. Chan. Inq. p.m. 49 Edw. III, pt. ii, no. I, 20.
  • 100. See Middleham.
  • 101. Egerton MS. 2827, fol. 71 d.
  • 102. Cur. Reg. R. 200a, m. 27.
  • 103. Kirkby's Inq. (Surt. Soc.), 168.
  • 104. Chan. Inq. p.m. 10 Edw. II, no. 64.
  • 105. Kirkby's Inq. (Surt. Soc.), 333.
  • 106. Lay Subs. R. bdle. 211, no. 7 A.
  • 107. Chart. R. 7 Edw. III, no. 20.
  • 108. Lay Subs. R. bdle. 211, no. 23; De Banco R. 501, m. 360.
  • 109. De Banco R. 501, m. 360.
  • 110. Chan. Inq. p.m. 12 Ric. II, no. 40.
  • 111. Lay Subs. R. bdle. 211, no. 73.
  • 112. Chan. Inq. p.m. I Edw. IV, no. 38. For descent see Sproxton in Helmsley.
  • 113. See Barforth, Forcett parish.
  • 114. Test. Ebor. (Surt. Soc.), ii, 284 n.
  • 115. See below.
  • 116. Close, 21 Hen. VIII, m. 7.
  • 117. Exch. Dep. Mich. 32 & 33 Eliz. no. 21.
  • 118. Ord, Cleveland, 474.
  • 119. Chan. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), cclxviii, 119.
  • 120. Ibid. ccclxvii, 93.
  • 121. Feet of F. Yorks, Hil. 22 Chas. I.
  • 122. Ibid. Mich. 1652.
  • 123. G.E.C. Baronetage, i, 135.
  • 124. Feet of F. Yorks. Mich. 20 Chas. II.
  • 125. Ibid. 24 Chas. II.
  • 126. Recov. R. Hil. 29 & 30 Chas. II, rot. 22.
  • 127. Chan. Proc. Hamilton (P.R.O.), bdle. 209, no. 46; Bills and Answers before 1714.
  • 128. Test. Ebor. (Surt. Soc.), ii, 284.
  • 129. Burke, Landed Gentry (1838), 660.
  • 130. Feet of F. Yorks. Trin. 10 Geo. III.
  • 131. Com. Pleas D. Enr. Hil. 24 Geo. III, m. 132.
  • 132. Information kindly given by Mrs. Maynard Proud.
  • 133. Feet of F. Yorks. Trin. 1 Will. IV.
  • 134. Information as above.
  • 135. Burke, Landed Gentry (1906).
  • 136. Dom. Bk. Fac. 24.
  • 137. Egerton MS. 2827, fol. 289. In a will of 1542 the full invocation of St. John the Baptist is given (ibid. fol. 151).
  • 138. Ibid. fol. 322.
  • 139. Ibid. fol. 291 d.
  • 140. Ibid. fol. 290 d.
  • 141. Ibid. fol. 291 d.
  • 142. Mem. of Ripon (Surt. Soc.), i, 249.
  • 143. Cal. of Papal Letters, iv, 51.
  • 144. Bacon, Liber Reg. 1250.
  • 145. Mem. of Ripon (Surt. Soc.), iii, 334–5.
  • 146. Pat. 2 Jas. I, pt. xxiv.
  • 147. Ibid. 6 Jas. I, pt. xx, no. 12.
  • 148. Mem. of Ripon (Surt. Soc.), i, 151.
  • 149. Feet of F. Yorks. Mich. 20 Jas. I.
  • 150. Egerton MS. 2827, fol. 168.
  • 151. Quarter Sess. Rec. (N. R. Rec. Soc.), ii, 212.
  • 152. Wills and Invent. in Archd. of Richmond (Surt. Soc.), 26.
  • 153. Chan. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), cclxxx, 73.
  • 154. Coll. Topog. et Gen. v, 106; cf. Gilling.