Pembridge, Herefordshire

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

Transcribed by Marion B. Wilkinson, © Copyright 2001


PEMBRIDGE (anciently Penebruge) is an extensive parish and village, situated in a very picturesque and fertile district, on the river Arrow, and on the main road between Leominster and Kington. It has a railway station on the Great Western railway (Leominster and Kington branch), and is distant 7½ miles W. of Leominster, 7 E. of Kington, 7 S.E. of Presteigne, 5 N. of Weobley, and 15 N.N.W. of Hereford; is in Stretford hundred, Kington union, petty sessional division, and county court district, and is a polling place for county elections. The population in 1861 was 1,500; in 1871, 1,535; inhabited houses, 318; families or separate occupiers, 356; area of parish, 7,077a. 2r. 5p.; annual rateable value, £10,939. Courts leet and baron are held here. There are two manors, under different lords - viz., Pembridge Borough and Pembridge Foreign; John Bowles Evans, Esq., being lord of the former, and Tho. de Calthrop, Esq., of the latter.

The principal landowners are the Right Hon, Lord Bateman, Major Richard Snead Cox, Rev. James Davies, John Bowles Evans, Esq., Mrs. Bannister, Edward Coates, Esq., James King King, Esq., Charles Williams Greenly, Esq., C.J. Bengough, Esq., J. Rathbone, Esq., Thomas de Calthrop, Esq., William Langston, Esq., Edward Edwards, Esq., and the trustees of the Evelyn estates. The soil is clayey; subsoil, chiefly old red sandstone; products, wheat, barley, hops, fruit, roots, and excellent pasture. This parish has long been famed for its superior breed of Herefordshire cattle. A fair is held here on May 13th yearly, which is also a hiring fair. The river Arrow affords some trout and grayling fishing. Pembridge gave name to the ancient and honourable family of Pembruge, Pembridge, or Brydges, ancestors of the Lords Chandos, of whom Henry de Pembruge was High Shereff of Herefordshire in the 42nd and 43rd of Henry III., and Sir Richard de Pembruge, who lies buried in Hereford cathedral, was made Knight of the Garter by Edward III. This was part of the estate of the Mortimers, who procured the privilege of a market for this place, and Henry I. granted a charter of liberties: the market has long been disused.

In the early part of the 15th century, a terrible battle (Mortimer's Cross) was fought in this neighbourhood between the royal forces and those of Owen Glendower. The following very interesting discoveries were made not many years since by the late Mr. T.N. Alford, in one of his fields, called the Lower Field, or "Church Gobbetts", a quarter of a mile east from Pembridge, where there are the remains of a camp of an oval shape, surrounded by trenches which are 6 feet deep and 7 feet wide. In the trenches (the soil of which is quite black) he found the bones of men and horses in large quantities, within about 20 inches of the surface. He also found several "steen graves", formed of stones and mortar, and containing large human bones, some of which were quite perfect. The graves contained the bodies of the chieftains. Horses' teeth are here in great quantities. In the trenches were also discovered some fluted brick tiles, a very strong and curious brass spur, and other relics.

Pembridge is in the diocese and archdeaconry of Hereford and rural deanery of Leominster; living, a rectory; value, £983, with residence and 36 acres of glebe; patrons, the President and Fellows of Corpus Christi College, Oxford; rector, Rev. James Frederick Crouch, B.D., formerly fellow of that college, who was instituted in 1849, and is also a prebendary of Hereford, and a rural dean. The Rev. Frederick Mellor, B.A., of Christ's College, Cambridge, is the curate. The church, dedicated to St. Mary, is a large stone edifice, and is an excellent specimen of 14th century work. It consists of nave, chancel, aisles, and transepts, and has accommodation for 900 persons. It underwent repair in 1842 at a cost of £685, in 1858 at a cost of £180, and in 1871 at a cost of £500. Detached about 25 yards from the church, on an octagon stone basement, is the curious-shaped old wooden belfry, containing a clock and five bells. The parish registers go back to the year 1564.

About ten years ago the Rev. James Davies, M.A. (Lincoln College, Oxford), of Moorcourt, erected an iron church upon his estate, which is used as a chapel of ease to the parish church. There is a national school for boys and girls, endowed by William Carpenter in 1650. The new school was erected in 1865 (of brick) at considerable cost, from the designs of Henry Curzon, Esq., architect, of London. It affords instruction to about 150 children. A branch national school was erected in 1872 at Broxwood; average attendance, about 60. There are almshouses for six poor aged women, founded by the Rev. Thomas Trafford, D.D. (rector of this parish), finished and endowed according to his design by Alice, his relict, in 1686. Bryan Duppa, Bishop of Winchester, also founded and endowed six almshouses for poor women in 1661. The charities belonging to the parish, including the school and almshouses, produce upwards of £180 yearly.

The Home Missionary chapel, erected in 1822, is used by the Congregationalists, who have also a chapel at Broxwood. There is a Wesleyan chapel at Marston, erected in 1836. Broxwood Court, the seat of Major Richard Snead Cox, J.P., D.L., was rebuilt in 1867, in a modern style, under the superintendence of Charles Hansom, Esq., F.I.B.A., of Clifton. It stands in a conspicuous position, being on an eminence, and commands extensive views of a gently undulating country. Adjacent to the mansion is a Roman Catholic chapel, also schools, with residence for the mistress, which have been erected by Major Cox, and are supported by him. The Right Rev. Abbot Gregory, D.D., is the resident chaplain. Richard Snead Cox, Esq., is a major of the Herefordshire militia, a J.P. and D.L. for the county, and served the office of high sheriff in 1858.

On the western side of the village is The Byletts, the seat of John Bowles Evans, Esq., J.P., D.L., who is lord of the manor of Pembridge borough. The mansion has been recently rebuilt. It was once the residence of the Lockards, ten brothers of which family were engaged at the same time in the civil wars of Charles I., and three of them were slain in endeavouring to support the drooping cause of royalty, in the defeat at Richards castle. The other principal residences in the parish are - Moorcourt, the seat of the Rev. James Davies, M.A., J.P.; Weston House, the residence of Mrs and Miss Bannister; Westonbury, William Child, Esq.; and The Rectory, Rev. James Frederick Crouch, B.D., J.P., &c. Marston is a hamlet, distant 1½ miles W.S.W.; Weston hamlet is distant 2 miles S.W.; Broxwood hamlet is distant about 3 miles S.W. of Pembridge and 5 N. of Kinnersley railway stations.

POSTAL REGULATIONS.- Post and Telegraph Office, Pembridge; Joseph Strange, Sub-Postmaster. Letters arrive by rail at 6.30 a.m.; despatched at 7.30 p.m. Money order and savings bank business is transacted from 8 a.m. till 6 p.m., and telegraph business from 8 a.m. till 8 p.m. Four messengers leave this office daily at 7.50 a.m. for Weobley and Norton Canon, Eardisland and Cholstrey, Bearwood, Luntley, and Newton, and Hardwick, returning at 6.35 p.m. Pembridge being what is termed a Railway Sub-Office, letters, &c., should be addressed-Pembridge, R.S.O. (Herefordshire.)
Post Office, Broxwood; Thomas Powles, Sub-Postmaster. Letters are received through Leominster and arrive about 9.15 a.m.; despatched thereto at 5.30 p.m. Pembridge is the nearest money order and telegraph office. Post town, Leominster.
Parish Church (St. Mary's).- Rev. James Frederick Crouch, B.D., Rector; Rev. Frederick Mellor, B.A., Curate; Mr Philip Turner and J. Bowles Evans, Esq., Churchwardens; James Higginson, Parish Clerk.
Moorcourt Chapel of Ease.- Rev. James Davies, M.A., Officiating Minister.
National Schools, Pembridge.- Mr. George Whyham, Master; Miss Alice C. Tudor, Mistress.
National School, Broxwood.- Mr. William Stead, Master; Mrs. Emma Stead, Mistress.
Roman Catholic Chapel, Broxwood.- Right Rev. H.G. Abbot Gregory, D.D., Priest.
Roman Catholic Schools, Broxwood.- Miss F. Addis, Mistress.
Congregational Chapel, Broxwood.- Ministers various.
Home Missionary Chapel (Congregational).- Ministers various.
Primitive Methodist Chapel, (Nokelanehead).- Ministers various.
Wesleyan Chapel, Marston.- Ministers various.
Railway Station (Leominster and Kington branch of G.W.R.)- Mr. Edward Harris, Station Master.
Assistant Overseer.- Mr. William Jones, Butt's Ash, Marston.
Pembridge and Eardisland Ploughing Society.- Mr. H. Yeld, Secretary.


Abell Mr. John, West End villa
Bannister Mrs. and Miss, Weston house
Child Mr. George, The Court of Noke
Child William, Esq., Westonbury
Cox Major Richard Snead, J.P. and D.L. (Major of the Herefordshire militia), Broxwood court
Crouch Rev. James Frederick, B.D., J.P. (rector of Pembridge, rural dean of Leominster
deanery, and prebendary of Cubblington in Hereford cathedral), The Rectory
Davies Rev. James, M.A., J.P. (prebendary of Moreton et Whaddon in Hereford cathedral), Moorcourt
Evans John Bowles, Esq., J.P., D.L., The Byletts
Fountaine Captain George, Bearwood
Gregory Right Rev. H.G. Abbot, D.D. (Roman Catholic), Broxwood court
Hentig Mrs., Bridge street
Langston Wm., Esq., M.R.C.S., Marston
Mellor Rev. Frederick, B.A. (curate)
Abell John, farmer, Blunt's house
Addis Miss F., schoolmistress, Broxwood
Andrews James, farmer, Weston court
Bassett Miss Emma, dressmaker, Market place
Bedford Geo., frmr. & hop gr., Milton ho.
Bishop William, beer retailer, West street
Bright Mrs. and Son, butchers and farmers, West street
Boulter John, beer retailer (Lion Inn)
Bounds John, farmer, Lowe farm
Carwardine Geo., New Inn, and carpenter
Child George, farmer, The Court of Noke
Child William, farmer, Westonbury
Cross George, mason
Davies Aaron, farmer and horse dealer
Davies Charles, wheelwright, West street
Davies Charles, beer retailer and cottage farmer, East street
Davies George, boot and shoemaker
Davies John, farmer, Croome's house
Davies Richard, Queen's Head, and farmer
Davies Thomas, blacksmith, &c., Marston
Davies William, blacksmith, Weston
Davies Wm., farmer, Upper Wheaten, Broxwood
Edwards Benjamin, wheelwright, carpenter, shopkeeper, and beer retailer (Carpenters'
), Marston common
Evans T.F., farmer, Hardwick farm
Exton John, head gamekeeper to Major R.S. Cox, J.P., D.L., Broxwood court
Field's Mercantile Company, Limited, coal and lime merchants, depôt at Railway station; head offices, Shrewsbury
Fletcher William, blacksmith, Broxwood
Fountaine Thomas George, farmer, Bearwood
Freeman Henry Thos., maltster, West st.
Hall William, cottage farmer and sawyer
Hamar Aaron, farmer, Marston court
Harris Mrs. Ann, cottage farmer, Little Sherrington
Harris Edward, station master, Railway station
Haywood James, farmer and hop grower, Lower green, Broxwood
Higginson James, parish clerk
Higginson Thomas, Greyhound Inn, East street
Holloway Joseph, farmer, Upper Marston
James Thomas, cottage farmer, Brook house
Jones George Joseph, assistant overseer for Kingsland and Byton parishes, Marston
Jones John, blacksmith, East street
Jones Wm., cot. farmer, and assistant overseer for Pembridge and Stanton-on-Arrow, Butt's Ash, Marston
Jones William, farmer and dealer
Lane David, farmer, Bolton
Langston William, M.R.C.S., L.S.A., surgeon; medical officer to Pembridge district of
Kington union, Marston
Lewis Mrs., cooper and beer retailer, Gorsty common
Lloyd John, farmer, Wheaten, Broxwood
Lloyd Thomas, cooper, East street
Mainwaring William, farmer, Upper Broxwood
Mainwaring William, tailor, West street
Matthews Wm., wheelwright, Weston
Monnington W.D., farmer, Moorcot farm
Owens Edward, farmer, Sherrington farm
Paine John Henry, agent, Railway sta.
Parker Francis & Co., drapers, grocer, and provision dealers, The Steps; and at Kington
(see Kington advts. page 3)
Phillips W.M., butcher, butter, cheese, and bacon factor, grocer, and agent for W. & A.
Gilbey's wines and spirits, East street
Poole William, coal, coke, and lime merchant, dep"t at Railway station (J.H. Paine, Agent); head offices, 22 Widemarsh street, Hereford (see Hereford advertisements page 53)
Powles Thomas, carpenter, shopkeeper, & sub-postmaster, Post office Broxwood
Preece James, baker and shopkeeper
Price John, farmer, Clearbrook, Middlebrook, and Court house farms
Roberts Richard, builder, &c., Lower green
Rogers Benjamin, farmer, The Grove
Rowlands George, saddler and harness maker
Rowlands G.H., grocer and provision dealer
SAUNDERS ARTHUR RICHD., boot and shoe manufacturer, leather seller, &c.; agent for the
United Kingodm temperance and general provident institution; also, for the Scottish fire
insurance company, and the British and Irish mutual trust building society, Bridge
street (see Kington advertisements page 16)
Sheers James, farmer, Colliers farm
Sirrell William, miller, Westonbury mill
Smith Robert, head gardener to Major R.S. Cox, Broxwood court
Stead William, master of National school, Broxwood
Stephens Francis, maltster, Arrow cot.
Stephens Miss, grocer and provision dlr.
Strange Joseph, sub-postmaster, Post and Telegraph office, East street
Taylor James, cottage farmer, Moseley
Tristram William, shoemaker, West st.
Tudor Miss Alice C., schoolmistress
Turner Philip, farmer, hop grower, stock breeder, and miller, The Leen; and at
Strangwood farms
Vale Richard, carpenter & cottage farmer
Wadams Samuel, miller, New mill
Wall James, wheelwright, &c., East st.
Watkins Zachariah, farmer & hop grower, Court house, Broxwood
Whyham Geo., master of National school
Williams Mrs. Ann, farmer and hop grower, Pitfield farm
Wood Thomas, beer retailer (Nag's Head Inn) and provision dealer

Transcription by Marion Wilkinson in May 2001.

This is a Genealogy Website
URL of this page:
Logo by courtesy of the Open Clip Art Library