Bishopstone, Herefordshire

Extract from Littlebury's Directory and Gazetteer of Herefordshire, 1876-7
with Private and Commercial Residents

Transcribed by Rosemary Lockie, © Copyright 2002

BISHOPSTONE is a small parish, situated to the W. of the road from. Hereford to Hay and Brecon, about 7 miles N.W. of Hereford, 13 E. of Hay, and 13 S.E. of Kington; in Grimsworth hundred, Weobley union and petty sessional division, Hereford county court district, and Yazor polling district. The population in 1861 was 288; in 1871, 231; inhabited houses, 57; families or separate occupiers, 62; area of parish, 776 acres; rateable value, £1,404. The Rev. George Horatio Davenport, of Foxley, who is lord of the manor, and Sir Henry Geers Cotterell, Bart., of Garnons, are the chief landowners. The soil is loamy, and produces much wheat, barley, fruit, and roots; the subsoil is clay. Offa's Dyke skirts the parish, and Bishopstone Hill is distinguished for its beautiful scenery. A tesselated Roman pavement was dug up here in 1812, but has since been destroyed. Bishopstone is in the diocese and archdeaconry of Hereford and rural deanery of Weobley; living, a rectory; value, £190, with residence and 50 acres of glebe; patron, Rev. G.H. Davenport; rector, Rev. Montague Earle Welby, M.A., late fellow of Magdalen College, Oxford, who was instituted in 1876.

The church of St. Lawrence is one of the most ornate and beautiful fabrics in the archdeaconry, chiefly in the Early English style, but abounding with proofs of the late Archdeacon Freer's liberality and good taste. It is in excellent repair; has a good vestry and warming apparatus, a fine organ (formerly at Eton College), built by the celebrated Father Smith. There are two bells in the western gable, also an effigy of the patron saint. The porch is an ancient oak structure removed from Yazor old church. The floors are laid throughout with Godwin's encaustic tiles, and were the first laid in this county; those in the chancel being very rich. The timber roof is decorated with scrolls bearing the names of prophets and apostles, with several texts expressing prayer and praise. There are several ancient monuments to the Berrington family, and a marble one (with figure by P. Hollins) to the late Sarah Freer, the late archdeacon's mother. The eastern window is by Warrington, of London; and all the other windows are filled with stained or quarry glass, by Powell. The adornments of the altar-table are all most beautiful and costly.

On the south side of the chancel is a brass plate, by Hardman of Birmingham, to record the name of Archdeacon Richard Lane Freer, the restorer and beautifier of this interesting church, to whom a magnificent memorial window is erected in the northern transept of the cathedral at Hereford, by Hardman, at a cost of £1,300, defrayed by public subscription. He died August 11th, 1863, and is buried in Bishopstone churchyard. The parish registers begin with the year 1727. There is a national school for boys and girls for this and the adjoining parish of Bridge Solers. It is under a certificated mistress, and there are about 50 scholars. A small orphanage was opened in 1873, and is supported by the rector. There are at present seven inmates, who are maintained, clothed, and educated. About half a mile from the church on the hill near the wood are six almshouses, founded and endowed by Anne Berrington, spinster, A.D. 1723, for six poor aged persons of this parish. The trustees of the hospital are the Rector for the time being, Sir Henry Geers Cotterell, Bart., the Rev. George H. Davenport, and the Rev. B.L. Seudamore-Stanhope, rector of Byford. Bishopstone Court, now a farmhouse in the occupation of Mr. Joseph Plant, was once the seat of the Berringtons. It is surrounded by a moat.

POSTAL REGULATIONS.- William Abberley, Sub-Postmaster. Letters arrive by messenger from Hereford at 8.30 a.m.; despatched thereto at 6 p.m. Letters can be registered here. Hereford is the nearest money order and telegraph office and post town.
Parish Church (St. Lawrence's).- Rev. Montague Earle Welby, M.A., Rector, Mr. Joseph Plant, Churchwarden; James Davis, Parish Clerk.
National School (boys and girls).- Miss Leonora Drane, Mistress. Almshouses (for six poor persons).
Orphanage.- Mrs. Cottrell, Matron.
Lloyd Mrs., The Cottage
Welby Rev. Montague Earle, M.A. (rector), The Rectory
Abberley William, shopkeeper and subpostmaster
Apperley John, wheelwright
Barnett Thomas, farmer, Bishon farm
Boucher Richard, blacksmith
Davis James, shopkeeper & parish clerk
Drane Miss Leonora, schoolmistress
Higgins William, boot and shoe maker
James Miss A., Nelson Inn, and farmer
Nice George, land agent and surveyor; steward to Sir Henry Geers Cotterell, Bart.; agent for the Sun fire insurance office, Downshill house
Plant Joseph, farmer, Bishopstone court

OCR/Transcription by Rosemary Lockie in June 2002.

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