WALTON (WEST) is a village on the river Nene, near the Roman Bank, 3 miles N.N.E. of Wisbech and 12 miles S.W. by W. of Lynn. It is in Wisbech union and county court district, Lynn bankruptcy district, Lynn Marshland rural deanery, Norwich archdeaconry, Freebridge Marshland hundred and petty sessional division, and Walsoken polling district of West Norfolk. It has a rateable value of £10,356.
Its extensive parish, which is about eleven miles long and from half a mile to one mile broad, increased its population during the eighty years 1801-81 from 513 to 860, and comprises many scattered houses, and 5516A. 3R. 30P. of land, including a large portion of the Smeeth and Fen, from four to five miles S.E. of the village (see page 21 [which is the description of the Smeeth and Fen]), and 600 acres on the west side of the Nene, in the Isle of Ely. Messrs. Francis and Edward Hugh Jackson are lords of the manor of West-Walton-cum-Membris, Newton Colville manor, and Coleraine manor. The chief landowners are Messrs. William and Edward William Trafford Lubbock, Joseph Johnson, and the representatives of the late Miss Trafford Southwell.
The CHURCH (St. Mary) is a beautiful freestone structure, comprising nave with aisles and clerestory, south porch and chancel. It has a massive but elegant tower with five bells, standing detached at a distance of 22 yards to the south, and forming an entrance gateway to the churchyard. This tower is of four stages, with turrets at the angles, and is mostly of the Early English period, but its immense belfry windows are in the early Geometrical style. Four arches form the basement, and the upper stages are richly ornamented with elaborately-wrought arcades. The fine west front of the church settled to such an extent that two enormous buttresses had to be erected about 400 years since to keep the structure from falling. By the removal of the late porch - used formerly as a school - the superb double doorway has been disclosed.
The interior of the nave is perhaps as harmonious and beautiful a specimen of Early English work as can be found in any parish church in England. It consists of six bays, and the pillars have detached and banded shafts of Purbeck marble, the capitals being floriated and united under one round abacus. A string-course runs along on the top of the arches, and the clerestory consists within and without of a continuous arcade, the central arch in each bay being pierced for a window. The chancel aisles have been destroyed, but the pillars and arches are still visible in the walls. Most of the windows of the church are Perpendicular insertions, and in the south aisle is an elaborate two-light window of Early Geometrical work. In the north aisle is the broken effigy of a priest, holding a pastoral staff in his right hand; he was undoubtedly the founder of the church, and a prior of Ely.
A tablet in the church is inscribed - 'To the immortal praise of God, that saveth His people: Be it kept in perpetual memory, that on the 1st November, 1613, the sea broke and overflowed all Marshland, to the great danger of men's lives and loss of goods. On March 23rd, 1614, this country was again overflowed with the fresh; and on the 12th and 13th of September, 1617, all Marshland was again overflowed by the violence of the sea.'
The rectory was formerly in two medieties - viz., Walton Eliensis, valued in the King's Book at £16, and now at £572; and Walton Lewes, valued in the King's Book at £16 13s. 4d., and now at £802, has been consolidated and is now in the patronage of the Lord Chancellor and incumbency of the Rev. Walter E. Browne, M.A. A neat rectory-house was erected about forty years ago. The tithes of the whole parish were commuted in 1830 for £1374 6s. per annum.
In the parish is a Primitive Methodist chapel, built in 1833.
The NATIONAL SCHOOL, near the church, is attended by about 90 children, and was built about forty years ago, at a cost of £430, on glebe land. In 1850 another school was built, which is now attended by 56 children, and in which divine service is performed twice every Sunday, at Fen End, about 1½ mile from the church. This is called 'St Paul's', and is a neat slated building, with a small spire.
There is an endowment from the dividends of £753 16s. 8d. Three per Cent Consols, left by Mrs Mary Dales, in 1703, for the education of poor children. The Poor's Estate, given at an early period by unknown donors, consists of the Ferry House, and 19A. 2R. 24P. of land in this parish, and 10A. 2R. in Walpole St. Peter, let at rents amounting to about £100 per annum, which is distributed amongst those poor parishioners who have not received parochial aid during the preceding twelve months.
POST OFFICE at Mr. Z. Handley's, Fen End. Letters despatched to Wisbech at 6.30 p.m. There is also a Wall Letter-Box near the church.
Those marked 1 should be addressed Emneth, Wisbech; and those marked 2 are in the Isle of Ely, Cambridgeshire.
1 Baker Walter vict. Jolly Farmers, and straw dealer, Smeeth Barrows Fredk. farmer & landowner Barrows John farmer Batch Robert farmer and landowner Batch Miss Susannah grocer Batterham Joseph farmer 1 Bradley Richard farmer, Smeeth Brashier John farmer Browne Rev. Walter Elliot, M.A. rector Buck Jno. steam thrashing mach. propr Buttery Joseph vict. King of Hearts Cook Joseph farmer Dawborn Robert, Esq. J.P. [see note below] 1 Drew Miss Mary Jemima dressmaker, Smeeth Edgoose James market gardener Edgoose Mrs Patience farmer Edgoose Stanton beerhouse & farmer, Dam house 1 Fisher Benjamin farmer, Fen end Frost John beerhouse, Fen end Gathergood Robert beerhouse, farmer, and landowner, Fen end Goodale Martin gardener Grimmer Thomas carpenter, wheelwright, bldr. & blacksmith, Fen end Hale James farmer Hall Mark farmer and landowner Handley Thomas farmer, Fen end Handley Zachariah butcher and postmaster, Fen end Harold Samuel blacksmith Herbert Joseph farmer, Fen end Herring Joseph shopkeeper & blacksmith, Fen end 1 Hill William farm bailiff, Smeeth 1 Hopkins Fras. stationmstr, Smeeth rd Houlden Henry farmer & landowner Howes Mr John Hubbard Wm. Hy. farmer, Fen end Hudson Augustine butcher Hudson James Vessey farm bailiff 1 Humphrey John farmer, Smeeth Humphrey Joseph farmer and landowner, Fen end Jarvis Miss Agnes schoolmstrs., Fen end Judd William corn miller, baker, farmer and landowner King George farmer Leach Jno. farmer & landownr, Fen end 2 Moules Smith farmer Murfitt Robert farmer & landowner, Fen end Oakley Levi baker & flour dlr: Fen end 2 Oldham John farmer Porter Mrs Harriet farmer, Fen end Porter Mr Johnson Fen end Porter Peter frmr & lndownr, Fen end Pratt Robert, jun. farmer Pratt Walter farm bailiff 2 Shipley John farmer Smith James farmer, Fen end Smith John farmer, Fen end Smithee William bootmaker, Fen end Stockdale Samuel Offley farmer and landowner Sutterby Daniel corn miller & farmer, Fen end Taylor George farmer, Fen end Taylor --- farmer Tombleson Robt. farm bailiff, Fen end Vincent Edward farmer Walker Miss A. schoolmistress Wiles Robert butcher, Fen end Willis Peter victualler, Queen of Trumps, and hardware dealer Wright Benj. carpenter & wheelwright Young William farmer, Fen endCARRIERS pass through to Wisbech on Wednesday, Thursday, & Saturday.
Transcription note: This name is probably "Dawbarn".
Copyright © Pat Newby.