Thornbury, Herefordshire

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

Transcribed by Rosemary Lockie, © Copyright 2001

THORNBURY is a parish situated nearly 2 miles W. of the main road from Bromyard to Tenbury, and extending to the borders of Worcestershire; is distant 4 miles N.W. of Bromyard, 8½ E. of Leominster, 7 S.S.E. of Tenbury, and 18 N.N.E. of Hereford; is in Broxash hundred, Bromyard union, county court district, polling district, and petty sessional division. The population of Thornbury with Netherwood in 1861 was 224; in 1871, 241; inhabited houses, 49; families or separate occupiers, 49; area of parish, 2,130 acres; annual rateable value, £2,378. William Lacon Childe, Esq., of Kinlet hall, near Bewdley, who is lord of the manor, Martin Curtler, Esq., of Worcester, and Edward Morris, Esq., M.D., of Elm grove, Thornbury, are the principal landowners. The soil is clayey and loamy; subsoil, red marl; and gives rise by several heads and powerful springs to the river Froome, sometimes called Froomy, which, passing by Bromyard, empties into the Lugg at Mordiford. The chief products are wheat, beans, hops, fruit, &c. On the summit of the Wall hills, in this parish, are vestiges of a British encampment, which is supposed to have been constructed by the great Caractacus. Its area is about 20 acres. Coins and weapons have been discovered in this locality.

Thornbury is in the diocese and archdeaconry of Hereford and rural deanery of North Froome; living, a rectory; value, £185, with residence and 25 acres of glebe; patron, W.L. Childe, Esq.; rector, Rev. John Williams, of St. Bees College, who was instituted in 1843. The church of St. Ann was restored in 1865-66, at a cost of £939, of which £300 was borrowed on the rates, and the remainder raised by subscription. It consists of nave, chancel, south porch, and west tower. There are many interesting architectural features in the church, and much care has been taken to preserve them. On the north side there is a Norman arch and window, and on the south side an arcade of Early English character. The chancel has been entirely rebuilt, with the addition of a vestry, as well as the whole of the north wall of the nave and part of the south wall. A new stone porch has been added on the south side, the tower has been scraped and pointed, and a new spire erected, covered with oak shingle.

A west window has been inserted in the tower, which now opens into the church, and a handsome stone arch has been erected at the entrance to the chancel. The tiled floors, which are remarkably beautiful, were supplied by Mr. Godwin, of Lugwardine, from a design by F.R. Kempson, Esq., F.I.B.A., of Hereford, who superintended the restoration. The pulpit is of stone, and springs from a small screen of the same material. The seats, desks, &c., are of old oak, varnished. The church is heated by one of Messrs. Rimington's stoves. It was reopened for divine service on July 15th, 1866. The parish register dates from 1538, and is in excellent preservation. A new stained glass window has been recently presented by Martin Curtler, Esq.; subject, from Exodus xxxiii. The charities belonging to the church amount to £4 yearly.

A school-room, with residence for the mistress, was built in 1871 at a cost of £735, and opened in January 1872, for the accommodation of the children of Thornbury, and the adjoining parishes of Edvin Ralph and Collington (part of). It is under the management of a committee; average attendance of boys and girls, 40. Church House is a large brick residence, the property of Martin Curtler, Esq., who occasionally resides there. Thornbury Court, occupied by John Lycett, Esq., is a modern residence built of rubbed and gauged stone, beautifully situated in the midst of ornamental timber on rising ground with south aspect, and commands magnificent views of Herefordshire, having the Malvern hills in the eastern distance, and, with other lands and Elm Grove, his residence, is the property of Edward Morris, Esq., M.D.

About 1 mile N.E. of Thornbury is Netherwood, a farm containing about 600 acres. It was part of the estate of the Mortimers, of whom Roger Mortimer, Earl of March, was a native of this place. After the battle of Bosworth Field, William Baskerville, of the house of Eardisley, who had accompanied the army of the Earl of Richmond, afterwards King Henry VII., from Leominster, and fought valiantly in his cause, received a grant of it from that sovereign. In the following century it was sold by Thomas Baskerville, Esq., and, having passed through several families, was purchased, about the time of Charles I., by Edward Pytts, Esq., whose descendant, Jonathan Pytts, Esq., of Kyre house, the late owner, willed it to William Lacon Childe, Esq., of Kinlet hall, co. Salop, the present proprietor. The mansion is recorded to have been a noble structure, and was surrounded by a park of nearly one hundred acres. In the former was born the great but unfortunate Robert Devereux, Earl of Essex, Queen Elizabeth's favourite and victim. Queen Elizabeth visited here.

POSTAL REGULATIONS.- Letters are received through Worcester via Bromyard, and arrive by messenger from the latter place about 10.30 a.m. There is no delivery on Sundays. Bromyard is the nearest money order and telegraph office. Post town, Worcester.
Parish Church (St. Ann's).- Rev. John Williams, Rector; Messrs. William Hanson and Thomas Grubb, Churchwardens; Thomas Knight, Sexton.
District School (boys and girls).- Miss Clara A. Grove, Mistress.
Curtler Martin, Esq., Church house; and at Lansdowne house, Worcester
Lycett John, Esq., Thornbury court
Morris Edward, Esq., M.D., Elm grove
Williams Rev. John (rector of Thornbury and surrogate for the diocese of Hereford), The Rectory
Allard John, farmer, Wall hills
Cooke Philip, farmer, Hubbage
Evans Thomas, farmer, The Cottage and Roxpole farms
Grove Miss, schoolmistress, School house
Grubb Thomas, farmer and hop grower, Stone house
Grubb Thomas, farmer and hop grower, The Hubbage
Hanson William, farmer, Kyrebatch
Hardwick Charles, farmer and hop grower, Church house
Hill Joseph, cider retailer (The Plough) and farmer, The Yeld
Horsnett William, shoemaker
Jackson William, mason, Drabbington
Knight Thomas, jobbing gardener and parish sexton
Lane Francis, farmer and hop grower, Upper house
Mason Edward, blacksmith
Mason Mrs. Mary, shopkeeper
Moore Joseph, miller, Thornbury mill
Morris William, farmer, Freeth
Moseley Daniel, farmer and hop grower, The Wooding farm (& in Wacton par.)
Mytton John Smith, farmer and hop grower, Netherwood
Newman Francis, frmr., Westwood & Park
Payne William, farmer, Pool house
Smith John, carpenter, Drabbington
Watkins William, farmer, Underwood
Whittall Richard, farmer and land steward for Martin Curtler, Esq. (Worcester), Rose villa

OCR/Transcription by Rosemary Lockie in November 2001.

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