Coquetdale Ward - North Division
alnham is a small parish bounded on the north by Ingram, on the west by Kidland, on the south by Alnwinton, and on the east by Whittingham. It comprises the townships of Alnham, Prendwick, Screnwood, and Unthank, whose united area is 12,389 acres. Population in 1801, 233; in 1811, 211; in 1821, 269; in 1831, 278; in 1841, 256; and in 1851, 291 souls.
the township of Alnham contains 9,535 acres; and its rateable value is £2,411 10s. The number of its inhabitants, in 1801, was 124; in 1811, 136; in 1821, 143; in 1831, 146; in 1841, 141; and in 1851, 132 souls.
the village of Alnham is situated near the source of the Aln, nine miles N. N. W. of Rothbury, and has evidently been a place of some importance in ancient times. To the south of the village is Black or Blake Chesters, which was occupied as a station by the Romans, and on the summit of a hill, a mile west of Alnham, is a semi-circular encampment, defended by two outward ramparts and a deep fosse, with an inner circle of uncemented stones. In the vicinity of the vicarage there are the vestiges of an old border castle, which seems to have been, at one time, a place of great strength, and about four years ago, there was discovered in the glebe field, on the north side of the tower just mentioned, a portion of a paved road, supposed by many to have been constructed by the ancient Britons. the church, dedicated to St. Michael, is a very ancient structure in the style of architecture which prevailed during the early part of the reign of Edward III, though some of the windows are of more modern construction. The parish register commences in 1688. The living, a vicarage in the archdeaconry of Lindisfarne and deanery of Rothbury, is valued in the Liber Regis at £3 17s. 1d. ; gross income £130. Patron, the Duke of Northumberland; vicar, the Rev. George Selby Thompson, M.A. the vicarage is a square embattled tower of the same date as the church, and having become very much dilapidated, subsequent to the great rebellion, it was restored by the patron of the living, in 1844. Probably this tower was the property of the Umfravilles of Harbottle Castle, as well as Rothbury and Elsdon Towers, which still bear their arms. The river Aln rises in the hills west of the village, and pursues an easterly direction towards Whittingham.
prendwick township, the property of Ralph Carr, Esq., is situated one mile north of Alnham, contains 1,612 acres, and its rateable value is £897. The population in 1801, was 61; in 1811, 32; in 1821, 68; in 1831, 61; in 1841, 53; and in 1851, 55 souls. This township was for many generations, the property of the Alders, from whom it was purchased, early in the 18th century, by the Bynes and Collingwoods, who, in their turn, sold it to the late John Carr, Esq., of Dunstan, in the County of Durham. Here is a school which receives £3 per annum from Ralph Carr, Esq. This township is farmed by Mr. Henry George Chrisp.
screnwood township is situated one mile south of Alnham, and comprises 1,070 acres, the rateable value of which is £601. The population in 1801, was 24; in 1811, 20; in 1821, 37; in 1831, 27; in 1841, 40; and in 1851, 60 souls. Thomas Riddell, Esq. is the landowner, and the entire township is in the occupancy of Mr. Thomas Forster, farmer and yeoman.
unthank township, the property of the Hon. H. T. Liddell, M.P., is situated one mile west of Alnham, and was possessed by a family which bore local name till 1568; it was afterwards the property of John Collingwood Tarleton, Esq., from whom it has passed to the present proprietor. The township contains 172 acres, and its rateable value is £223 17s. 6d. The number of its inhabitants in 1801, was 24; in 1811, 23; in 1821, 21; in 1831, 34; in 1841, 22; and in 1851, 44 souls. Unthank consists of one farm, which is occupied by Mr. George Anburn.
William Whellan & Co., History of Northumberland, 1855
1. The "-" is in the original text.
24 October 2008
© Steve Bulman