[Transcription copyright © Pat Newby]
CAWSTON is a considerable village and parish, 2 miles E. of Reepham, and 4 miles W.S.W. of Aylsham, on the East Norfolk extension of the Great Eastern Railway (which was opened in 1881). The parish, which includes the scattered hamlets of Eastgate, Southgate, and Woodrow, is in Aylsham union and county court district, South Erpingham petty sessional division, South Erpingham hundred, Norwich bankruptcy district, Aylsham polling district of North Norfolk, Ingworth rural deanery, and Norwich archdeaconry. It had 1093 inhabitants in 1881, living on 4296 acres, and has a rateable value of £5359.
Three fairs are held here annually, on February 1, and the last Wednesdays in April and August, the latter of which is a large sheep fair. Colonel W.E.G.L. Bulwer owns a great part of the soil, and is lord of the manor, which he holds in free socage of the Duchy of Lancaster, in token of which he has carried before him (or his steward) on the court days, a brazen hand holding a ploughshare and a mace surmounted by a bearded arrow. The custom of the manor is gavelkind, with dower and arbitrary fines. In 1263, John de Burgh obtained a charter for a market here every Wednesday, and a fair on October 1 and 2, but these have long been obsolete.
The CHURCH (St. Agnes) is a noble cruciform structure of freestone, with a fine square tower containing six bells; the whole built by Michael de la Pole (Earl of Suffolk) and Catherine his wife, except the north aisle. In the windows are some fragments of ancient stained glass, and on the east wall of the south transept a painting of Saint Agnes was discovered some years ago. The ancient screen still remains, and its twenty lower panels have finely-coloured paintings of the Apostles and other saints, including a remarkable one of John Schorn holding a boot, into which he has just 'conjured the devil.' The doors of the screen have figures of the four doctors of the church - St. Ambrose, St. Jerome, St. Gregory, and St. Augustine.
The rectory, valued in the King's Book at £15 13s. 11d., is in the gift of Pembroke Hall, Cambridge, and incumbency of the Rev. Theodore Henry Marsh, M.A., who has a spacious residence and a yearly rent-charge of £1023, awarded in 1845 in lieu of tithes, with a glebe of 13 acres. The Church Land is 1A. 3R.
In a small planting near Woodrow Inn, is a monument in memory of Sir Henry Hobart, who was killed here in a duel with Oliver Neve, in 1698. On the north side of the parish is Docking farm, where, it is said, there was anciently a large village called Alvington.
The poor ought to have the interest of £120, left by Robert Mott, in 1760, Edward Dewing, in 1764, and Edward Lombe, in 1740, but it has long been lost. In 1818, Dr. Baker, the late rector, left the interest of £100 for the support of a Sunday School. At the enclosure of the Heath, in 1802, an allotment of 106A. was awarded to the parishioners for fuel.
Here are two chapels belonging to the Wesleyans and the Primitive Methodists, the former built in 1829 and the latter in 1861. A National School was erected in 1869, by W.E.L. Bulwer, Esq., and is attended by 180 children. A Reading Room and Library were established here in 1863, and have about 30 members.
POST, MONEY ORDER OFFICE, and SAVINGS BANK at S. Mears's. Letters arrive at 8.30 a.m., and are despatched at 3.0 p.m., viâ Norwich. The nearest Telegraph Office is at Reepham.
Austin Mrs Mary Ann butcher and victualler, Lamb Inn Barber Alfred watchmaker Bird Edward John school attendance officer, sanitary inspector, manure, corn & seed mercht. & insurance agt Bird Mrs Eliza farmer Blogg John parish clerk Brett Edward Charles shopkeeper Brown Rev. Thomas Medlicott, B.A. vicar of Haveringland Coller & Sons coal merchs.; & Norwich Cork Mrs Davidson Samuel bootmaker & beerhouse, Southgate Dunn Major Richd. plumber, glazier, and victualler, Prince of Wales Easton Isaac farmer, Eastgate Easton James farmer, Wood farm Easton John Wm. farmer, Southgate Easton Joseph farmer, Eastgate Easton Robert farmer, Eastgate Easton Robert carrier Farrow W. vict. Woodrow Inn Fuller William C. clerk Gaff Richard shopkeeper, Eastgate Galley William vict. Rat Catcher Garrod William Wells day school George Mrs Sarah Green Saml. Kerridge butcher & frmr Hickling John Shepheard land agent, auctioneer, valuer and farmer; and at Brandiston, Sall, & Haveringland Howard Christopher farmer Howard Frederick Chas. grcr. & drpr Howard Horace travelling draper Jeary Robert tailor Kiddell Jas. John farmer, Beerhs. fm Knapp Hy. & Mrs Chrlte. schl. teachers Laxton William carrier Manthorpe Robert shopkeeper and victualler, Ship, Eastgate Marsh Rev. Theodore Henry, M.A. rector, The Rectory Massingham William cooper Meachen Edgar Abhm. G.E. statnmstr Mears Stephen postmaster Mears William blacksmith Neale William vict. White Horse Newstead Edmund grocer & draper Nichols Mrs Mary Eastgate Olley Thomas tailor Ottway Thomas blacksmith Parnell Henry bootmaker Phillipo Edwd. farmer, Docking farm Pye James baker and farmer Russell Edwd. watchmkr.; & Foulsham Russell John baker Seaton - saddler & harness maker Seely Alfred farmer, Eastgate Shreeve Thos. coal mert.; & Aylsham Tuddenham John farmer, Eastgate Wakeford William & Son wine and spirit merchants, grocers & drapers Wakeford Mrs Elizabeth Watts & Co. coal and coke merchants Watts William builder, contractor, brickmaker, well sinker, &c. Watts William shopkeeper & sexton
CARRIERS. - W. Laxton, to Norwich, Mon. Wed. and Sat.;
R. Easton, Wed. and Sat.
RAILWAY. - G.E. station. E.A. Meachen, stationmaster
See also the Cawston parish page.
Copyright © Pat Newby.