The parish is mostly the property of Captain Walter Fitzgerald Kerrich, who resides at Jock's lodge in this parish. The Hall is a modern white brick mansion, in a pleasant and well-wooded park. Geldeston is included in the manor of Stockton-with-the-Soke, of which Captain Walter F. Kerrich is lord. It was granted by King Stephen to Hugh Bigot, on being created Earl of Norfolk, and a piece of land opposite the Hall is still known as 'Bigot's Hill.' Here are several malthouses, a staithe with a navigable cut to the Waveney, and a station on the Waveney Valley Railway.
The Romans had a station here, on an elevation called Dunbury hill, which commanded the bend of the river; and some years ago a beautiful Roman glass vase, part of a child's bulla, and some earthen vessels were dug up on this spot. In digging the foundations of the Hall, in 1802, two bands or fillets of pure gold were found, and although broken, all the parts of one and the greater part of the other have been preserved. The length of one band is nearly twelve inches and the breadth one and a quarter; the other was probably of the same dimensions when perfect. They are bent at either extremity, so as to overlap and form a sort of clasp; and a waving cable-like ornament is observable upon both, though slightly different in detail. These remarkable and precious ornaments were probably used as torques and worn round the neck, or perhaps as fillets for the head, and appear to be of the Celtic period. They are still in the possession of Captain Walter F. Kerrich, as are likewise a Roman diota dug up here, a magnificent pair of red-deer antlers found at Haddiscoe, and a small horn dredged from the river. During the restoration of the chancel a Romano-British sacrificial vessel, now in the British Museum, was found under the foundation.
The CHURCH (St. Michael) is a slated fabric of Perpendicular architecture, and comprises nave, chancel, south porch, and round embattled tower with one bell. It was restored in 1865 at a cost of £1200 by subscription. The living is a discharged rectory, valued in the King's Book at £6, in the patronage of the Lord Chancellor, and incumbency of the Rev. Daniel Gillett, M.A., who has 36 acres of glebe, a yearly rent charge of £170 6s., awarded in 1837 in lieu of of tithes, and a small rectory house, built in 1832.
The poor's allotment, 7A. 20P., was awarded at the enclosure, and the rent, amounting to £12 a year, is distributed in coals.
The SCHOOL, conducted on the British system, was built by the late H.G. Dowson, Esq., in 1825, and is still chiefly supported by his family, and is attended by about 68 children.
POST OFFICE at Mr. Stephen Thompson's. Letters, viâ Beccles, arrive at 8.55 a.m., and depart at 5.30 p.m. This is also a Money Order Office and Savings Bank.
Algar John shoemaker Anguish William shopkeeper Banham John farmer & seed merchant, Dunburgh cottage Bellwood John market gardener Bird George stationmaster Boggis Joseph, jun. farmer and overseer, Fir Tree farm Brundall John Thompson farmer, Manor house Chaplin Charles carpenter, parish clerk and sexton Clarke Philip farmer and surveyor, Cradock farm Crisp Jno. & Son maltsters, & Beccles Darby Mrs Elizabeth beerhouse Dashwood Robert, J.P. (for Suffolk) Dunburgh house Dowson Edward Theodore maltster & coal merchant, Green bank Dowson Mr Septimus Sunnyside Gillett Rev. Daniel, M.A. rector, The Rectory Head Robert shoemaker Hobbles John farmer Hobbles Robt. frmr. Kells Heath frm Kerrich Captain Walter Fitzgerald Jock's lodge Morris Frederick farmer, Hall farm Mower Joseph farmer Piper Miss Annie Eliz. schoolmistress Read Charles farmer Thompson Stephen grocer, draper, assistant overseer, assessor and collector of taxes, and postmaster Thornhill Mrs Charlotte Geldeston ldg Webb Joseph vict. Wherry Inn
RAILWAY (G.E.R., Waveney Valley) - Trains to Ispwich and Norwich for all parts several times a day; Geo. Bird, stationmaster
"The rector (Rev. D. Gillett) died on June 23, 1883."
See also the Geldeston parish page.
Copyright © Pat Newby.