[Transcription copyright © Pat Newby]
DENVER is a small village 1 mile S. of Downham, and its parish is in Downham union, Clackclose hundred and petty sessional division, Downham county court district, Lynn bankruptcy district, Downham polling district of West Norfolk, Fincham rural deanery, and Norfolk archdeaconry. The parish, which had 836 inhabitants in 1881, living on 3149 acres, has a rateable value of £5633.
It includes the hamlets of Denver Sluice and Salter's Lode, distant about 2 miles W. of Denver on the river Ouse; the former at the mouth of the New Bedford river, or 100 feet drain, and the latter at the confluence of the Old Bedford river. Both the rivers are navigable for small craft, and have sluice gates and locks. Denver Sluice is crossed by a bridge of four arches, and was built at immense expense when the Bedford level was drained, but was destroyed by the violence of the tides in 1713, and soon afterwards rebuilt. In 1834-5, it was again rebuilt and widened at a cost of £30,000. At Salter's Lode are two sluices or locks, one opening into the Well Creek, and the other into the old Bedford river, the former rebuilt in 1827, and the latter in 1828.
The parish is in two manors, called East and West Hall, of which E.R.M. Pratt, Esq., J.P., is lord; but Captain Bulwer, Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, and others have estates here.
The CHURCH (St. Mary) is a neat edifice of car-stone, comprising nave, north aisle, chancel, south porch, vestry, and tower with small spire and five bells. It was restored in 1877, when the north aisle was added, the tower arch opened, and the church reroofed, refloored, and reseated. In the chancel are a double piscina, and sedilia for three priests. The rector gave a rood of land in 1870 for the enlargement of the churchyard.
The rectory, valued in the King's Book at £10 13s. 4d., and now at £911, is in two medieties, called St. Peter's, East Hall, and St. Michael's, West Hall. It is in the patronage of Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, and incumbency of the Rev. William Houghton Stokes, M.A., who has a good residence and 94A. 1R. 13P. of glebe.
In the chancel a black marble slab covers the remains and records the worth of Dr. Robert Brady, a native of this parish, who was physician in ordinary to Charles II. and James II., and for forty years master of Gonville and Caius College, to which he bequeathed all his estate in Denver. He wrote several excellent works, one of which was 'A complete History of England, from the first entrance of the Romans to the end of Richard II.' He died in 1700.
The Church Land, 28A. 2R., is let at an annual rent. The Poor's Land, 51A. 2R. 7P., was partly allotted at the enclosure, and is let for £55 7s. 6d. The poor have also £2 a year from 1A. 1R. 8P., given by Alexander Dillingham; £4 a year as the rent of 'Patch-brigs,' purchased with £100 left by Mrs. Stafford; and £4 a year left by the Rev. S.C. Smith.
The Primitive Methodists have a small chapel in the parish. A Wesleyan Chapel was erected in 1864, by Mr. Robert Boyce, at a cost of £100, which will seat 100 persons. A handsome School, recently erected by the rector, is attended by 120 children. Here is a station on the Lynn and Ely branch of the Great Eastern Railway.
The late Captain G.W. Manby, author of an ingenious apparatus for saving the lives of shipwrecked mariners, was born in this parish, in 1765, at East Hall, an ancient manor house, which has been much modernised, but still exhibits a fine gable end with some good chimneys and ornaments of Tudor domestic architecture.
POST OFFICE at Mr. Ollett Ambrose's Letters arrive at 7 a.m., and are despatched at 6.35 p.m. week days, and 11.55 a.m. Sundays, viâ Downham, which is the nearest Money Order and Telegraph Office.
Ambrose Ollett assistant overseer, and of Fordham, Roxham, and Ryston, and postmaster Ambrose Robert tailor Banham John bootmaker Barber Benjamin crpntr. & whlwright Barley Thomas beerhouse & shopkpr Bateman Jonathan vict. Crown Inn, Denver Sluice Beart William farmer Beasley James sluice keeper Bennett Chas. vict. Carpenters' Arms, and farmer Bowker Geo. sluice kpr. Salter's Lode Boyden William coal dealer Butcher Clare farmer, Salter's Lode Cork Reuben beerhouse and cattle dlr Corston George farmer & boat owner Dawson Henry farmer Dungay Robert estate carpenter Dungay William carpenter, wheelwright and parish clerk Dunnett John beerhouse Elworthy Chas. farmer, Salter's Lode Gates Mrs Jane Gleaves James corn miller Gleaves Mr John Green Matthew farmer Harpley Joseph farmer, The Hollies Hodgson George blacksmith Holliday Charles bricklayer Holliday William bricklayer Hopkin Mr Francis Horne James blacksmith, and dealer in ropes and nails How Henry John corn & coal mercht. The Hall Johnson Henry farmer Kent William grocer and draper Lambert Mrs Mary Ann vict. Bell Inn, and farmer Lancaster Mrs Mary gardener Monk Geo. grocer, draper and butcher Morgan Henry beerhse. & bootmaker Mumford Mrs Jane Nash Fredk. plumber, glazier & painter Paul Jacob cowkeeper Perry - stationmaster Reed Thomas L. solicitor (R. & Wayman), Downham Crow hall Reeson Mr Joseph Reid William vict. Ship Inn, Denver Sluice Robinson Edward bootmaker Robinson Henry bootmaker Robinson William bootmaker Rodwell Mrs Sarah gardener Sayer Thomas furniture broker Sharpe James farmer and carrier Sherringham Frederick Gay farmer, Lower farm Shingles John farmer, Salter's Lode Stokes Rev. Wm. Houghton M.A. J.P. rector, The Rectory Sutleff John farmer and land owner Tebbutt Wm. farm bailiff, Salter's Lode Thorpe John farmer, Denver Sluice Tingay William frmr. Ten Mile bank Towler Robert cowkeeper Tuck Reuben farmer and landowner, Salter's Lode Turner Henry Wm. farmer, Hill house Upcraft Robert farmer Upshaw Edward beerhouse & farmer, Salter's Lode Watson Mrs Ann coal dealer Watson Geo. farm bailiff, Denver Sluice Williams Alfred schoolmaster Wing Isaac boat builder, Denver Sluice Wootton Joseph farmer, College farm
CARRIER. - Jas. Sharpe, to Lynn, Tues. and Sat
Downham and Stoke Ferry Railway, Station for goods only; - Perry, stationmaster
Downham is the nearest passenger station
See also the Denver parish page.
Copyright © Pat Newby.