MENDHAM is a pleasant village and parish, on the river Waveney, in Hoxne union and rural deanery, partly in Hoxne hundred and partly in the hundred of Earsham in the county of Norfolk, Suffolk archdeaconry, and Norwich diocese, East Suffolk, Harleston county court district, 2 miles south-east from Harleston railway station, 7 south from Bungay, 10 north-east from Diss station, and 10 north-west from Halesworth.
The church of All Saints is in the Perpendicular style, consisting of nave, chancel, and aisles, with square tower and 6 bells: in the interior are several mural monuments and tablets, also three excellent brasses to the memory of the Frestone family. The parish register dates from the year 1678. The living is a vicarage, valued in 1835 at £104, with modern residence (and glebe consisting of 25 acres) in the gift of the Rev. E.W. Whitaker, of Stanton by Bridge, and held by the Rev. A.H. Brereton, B.A., of Queen's College, Cambridge. The rectorial tithes of a large portion of the parish have been purchased by the landowners, and Sir Robert Shafto Adair, Bart., is impropriator of the rest, which were, in 1841, commuted for £270, and the vicarial for £52 8s.
Near the church, on the Suffolk side of the river, was a priory, dedicated to the Virgin Mary, founded by William, son of Roger de Huntingfield, during the reign of King Stephen; a portion of its ruins is still visible. The parish lies in three manors, viz., Walsham Hall, Mendham King's Hall, and Priory: W.S. Holmes, Esq., is lord of the first, and Sir Robert Shafto Adair, Bart., is lord of the two latter. T. Thornhill, Esq., Thomas Rant, Esq., and several others are landowners.
Here is a Parochial school, supported by subscription.
The Independents and Wesleyans have chapels here.
The Priory is the residence of Captain Thomas Wood. The population in 1861 was 779; the area of the parish is 3,144 acres, of which 800 are on the north bank of the Waveney, in the hundred of Earsham, Norfolk, and form a part of the town of Harleston. The gross value is £5,671 10s. 6d., and the rateable value £4,907.
Parish Clerk, Samuel Buckingham.
Letters through Harleston, which is the nearest money order office. Letter box at J.H. Wood's, cleared at 6 p.m. daily
Parochial School, Miss Caroline Louisa Eglington, mistress
Brereton Rev. Arthur Henry, B.A. [vicar], Vicarage Chastone Charles Benjamin, esq Gedney Mr. George Gedney Mrs Wood Capt. Thomas The Priory COMMERCIAL. Beaumont James farmer Beaumont John farmer Broughton William farmer Brown George farmer Buckingham John farmer Buckingham Samuel blacksmith Chase George miller & farmer Chastone Charles Benjamin landowner & farmer Denny Thomas Meeke farmer Flatman Eastgate carpenter Godbold Robert wheelwright & carpentr Goodwin Frederick Red Lion, & farmer Jeffs Palmer farmer Lusher George farmer Mark James farmer Mobbs Samuel musician Rant Frederick farmer Riches William farmer Ringer William Beverley farmer Saunders William farmer Savage Edgar collector of poor rates Scotchmer John shoe maker Shearing Damaris farmer Snowling Edward farmer Thurkettle James farmer Woods John Hazel grocer, provision dealer & draper
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