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Norfolk: East Ruston

William White's History, Gazetteer, and Directory of Norfolk 1883

[Transcription copyright © Peter Green]

RUSTON (EAST), or Riston, a large scattered village and parish, 6 miles E. by S. of North Walsham, and 3 miles N. from Stalham, which is the nearest railway station, is in Smallburgh union, Happing hundred and Happing and Tunstead petty sessional division, North Walsham county court district, Norwich bankruptcy district, Stalham polling district of North Norfolk, Happing division of Waxham rural deanery, and Norfolk archdeaconry.

It had 667 inhabitants in 1881, living on 2494 acres of land, and has a rateable value of £4808. In 1810, about 303 acres were allotted to the poor, who pasture their cattle upon it and cut fuel. The rest belongs to a number of free- and copy-holders, of whom the principal are Ash Rudd, Esq., Mrs. Atthill, Charles Le Neave, Esq., and H.M. Taylor, Esq. The soil is for the most part fine rich loam, subsoil sand, gravel and clay. Major F.A. Cubitt is lord of the manors of East Ruston and Burnells, and the Ecclesiastical Commissioners are the lords of the manor of Kerdiston Netherall. Here is also a rectorial manor, leased with the tithes.

The CHURCH (St. Mary) consists of nave, chancel, south aisle, south porch, and square tower with one bell. The panels of the chancel screen are embellished with paintings of the four evangelists, and St. Gregory, St. Augustine, St. Ambrose, and St. Jerome. The font is octagonal, and is enriched with carvings representing the symbols of the evangelists, &c. In the chancel is a piscina. The Register dates from 1558.

The benefice is a discharged vicarage, valued in the King's Book at £11.11s.10d., and was annexed in 1757 to the rectory of Ridlington, in the alternate patronage of the Earl of Kimberley and the Dean and Canons of Windsor. The Rev. William M. Hobson is the incumbent, who is also rector of the adjoining parish of Ridlington.

The Dean and Canons of Windsor, who are next in turn of presentation, are appropriators of the tithes, which are subject to the payment of only £13.6s.8d. to the vicar, and were commuted in 1841 for £941.10s. per annum. They are held on lease, with the rectory manor, by Messrs. Ash Rudd, H. Taylor, J. Wilkinson, J. Neave, Mrs. Shepheard, Mrs. Thirst, and Miss A. Silcock. This lease expires in 1886, when the tithes will fall to the Ecclesiastical Commissioners, who will probably augment the benefice.

The Wesleyans have a small chapel and Sunday school here.

A SCHOOL BOARD, for the united parishes of East Ruston and Ridlington, was established in 1875, and consists of the following members, viz:- Ash Rudd, Esq., (chairman), Charles Le Neave (vice-chairman), William Durrell, William Grimes, and Rev. William M. Hobson. Mr. Thomas W. Durrell is clerk to the Board. The Schools, which are situated here, were erected in 1879, at a cost of £1200, for 150 scholars; there is an average attendance of 90.

In the parish is a small wharf for landing coals, &c.

Richard Porson, M.A., the eminent Greek scholar, was born here in 1759, and was first initiated in letters by his father, then clerk of the parish. He was sent to Eton by the liberality of his patron, Mr. Norris, and afterwards to Trinity College, Cambridge, where he was elected Fellow in 1781, and proceeded to a master's degree in 1785. His acquisitions in Greek literature were uncommonly extensive, as his criticisms and emendations of authors in that language clearly evince. In 1803 he was unanimously chosen Greek Professor of the University. A short time before his death, which happened in 1808, he was appointed principal librarian to the London Institution, and was buried in the chapel of Trinity College, Cambridge, and this fact is commemorated on the tombstone of his father (late clerk of the parish), who is buried here.

Anthony John Atthill, Esq., of East Ruston, by his will, dated February 29, 1877, left the interest of £100 three per cent. Consols to be divided amongst ten poor aged people (five men and five women), on New Year's Day, by the vicar and churchwardens.

POST from Norwich via Stalham.

	Allen     Thos. Howard     frmr. and owner
	Atthill   Mrs.
	Barber    Robert           pork butcher
	Bristow   Alfred           miller and farmer; h Stalham
	Bristow   George           farmer
	Durrell   John Youngman    farmer
	Durrell   Thomas Wilson    farmer, overseer, and clerk to
	                             School Board
	Durrell   Wm.              farmer, owner, assistant overseer,
	                             rate and tax collector
	Dyball    Francis          farmer
	Gaze      Edward           shoemaker
	Grimes    Jas.             shoemaker and pig killer
	Grimes    William          farmer
	Hammond   James Augustine  plumber and painter
	Hobson    Rev. William     vicar, and rector of Ridlington;
	            Muskett          h North Walsham
	Le Neave  Charles          farmer, owner, and surveyor,
	                             Grove house
	Mason     Thomas           farmer
	Montague  Miss Mary        schoolmistress
	Plummer   Charles          wheelwright
	Plummer   Charles, jun.    farmer
	Plummer   John             blacksmith
	Plummer   Mrs. Mary        farmer, Common
	Pye       Robert           pork butcher and vict.
	                             Butchers' Arms Inn
	Riches    Isaac            farmer
	Riches    Thomas           blacksmith
	Rudd      Ash              farmer & owner, The Hall
	Rudd      Mrs. Harriet     The Hall
	Southgate William          shoemaker
	Spanton   John             vict. Chequers Inn
	Thirst    Mrs. Sarah       farmer
	Turner    Robt. Geo.
	            & Horace       corn mllrs.
	Youngman  Miss Anna        grocr. & drapr. 


The font in the church has lately been restored by Mrs. Atthill, in memory of her husband, Anthony John Atthill, Esq., who was for many years one of the churchwardens of this parish.

See also the East Ruston parish page.

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Copyright © Pat Newby.
November 1999