Castle Ward - West Division
Stannington parish is divided into three divisions, Called respectively Stannington North-East Quarter, Stannington North-West Quarter, and Stannington South Quarter, which comprise the townships of Bellasis-with-Boghall, Blagdon-with-Milkhope, Clifton-with-Coldwell, Duddoes-with-Whinney Hill, Plessy-with-Shotton, Saltwick, Stannington, and Stannington Vale, whose united area is 10,093 acres. The population in 1801, was 1,252; in 1811, 1,270; in 1821, 963; in 1831, 1,252; in 1841, 1,121; and in 1851, 1,000 souls. This decrease of population is attributed to the disuse of a colliery, and a spinning mill. The soil of this district is generally rich and well cultivated. The principal landowners are the Earl of Carlisle and Sir Matthew White Ridley, Bart. Stannington parish is bounded on the north by Morpeth, on the west by Whalton and Ponteland, on the south by Ponteland, and on the east by Bedlingtonshire, and the chapelries of Cramlington and Horton.
bellasis-wtih-boghall is a township consisting of three farms on the north-side of the river Blyth, five and half miles west by south of Morpeth. The population, acreage, &c., are returned with the parish.
blagdon-with-milkhope township is situated eight and a quarter miles north by west of Newcastle, and two miles south of Stannington. The population, acreage, &c., are included in the parish returns. The manor of Blagdon was held under the barony of Morpeth, in the reign of Henry III, by John de Plessis, but in 1567, it was the property of the Fenwick's, by whom it was sold to the Whites, merchants, of Newcastle, who became united with the ancient and opulent family of Ridley, by the marriage of Matthew Ridley, Esq., with Elizabeth, eldest daughter and heiress of Matthew White, Esq., in 1742. The ancient family seat of the Ridley's was at Hardriding, near Haltwhistle. Sir Matthew White, who was created a baronet in 1756, died in 1763, and was succeeded by his nephew Sir Matthew White Ridley, Bart., who died universally lamented in 1813, having represented the town and county of Newcastle for thirty-eight years, to the great satisfaction of his constituents. There is a beautiful monument to his memory in the church of St. Nicholas, Newcastle. Upon his decease, at the period above mentioned, the family honours and estates devolved upon his son, Sir Matthew White Ridley, who represented Newcastle in parliament for a period of twenty-four years. He died at Richmond, Surrey, on July 15th, 1836, in the fifty-eighth year of his age, and was succeeded by his son, the present worthy baronet, who married, in 1841, Cecilia Anne, eldest daughter of the Right Hon. Sir James Parke.
blagdon hall, the seat of Sir Matthew White Ridley, Bart., is a handsome structure, containing many highly finished apartments. The extensive gardens and pleasure grounds are ornamented by some fine sheets of water, two neat lodges, and the Kale Cross, the latter of which formerly stood at the Foot of the Side in Newcastle. It was removed in 1807, and presented by the corporation to its donor, Sir Matthew White Ridley, Bart., who caused it to be set up here. milkhope is that part of Blagdon estate that was formerly called Stumpy Riggs.
clifton-with-coldwell is a township in the parish of Stannington, with which the acreage, population, &c., are returned. It is situated two and a half miles south of Morpeth, and is the property of the Earl of Carlisle, who possesses the whole of the northern part of this parish. Clifton is a small village, but Coldwell is merely a single field.
duddoes-with-whinney hill is a township in the above parish, situated four miles S.S.W. of Morpeth. It consists of four farms called East, Middle, and West Duddoes, and Whinney Hill Farms. The acreage and population are included in the parish returns.
Plessy-with-shotton township comprises the hamlets of Plessy, Plessy Checks, Shotton, and Shotton Edge, and is situated six miles south by east of Morpeth. This place gave name to the ancient family of Plessis, and was possessed by John de Plessis in the reign of Edward I, at which period it was held by the service of one knight's fee. It is now the property of Sir Matthew White Ridley, Bart., who is also the proprietor of the Shotton estate, which is situated upon a rocky eminence overlooking the great North Road. Corn milling is carried on here by Ralph and John Venus, who have a mill on the banks of the Blyth.
saltwick township is situated north of the river Blyth, four and a half miles S.S.W. of Morpeth. Its acreage, population, &c., are returned with the parish. The tithes were commuted in 1839; aggregate amount £116 10s. 11d. due to the impropriator, and £3 3s. 6d. to the vicar of Stannington. The principal resident is Mr. John Chrisp, land agent.
stannington is a township and village, giving name to the parish in which it is situated. Its population, acreage, &c., are included in the parish returns. It was anciently held under the barony of Morpeth, by the Greystock family, from whom it passed to the Somervilles, and we find that the famous Roger Thornton, of Newcastle, died possessed of one half of this manor in 1439.
the village of Stannington is situated on the North Road, about ten miles north by west of Newcastle, and five miles south of Morpeth. the church, dedicated to St. Mary, is a very ancient structure, erected at different periods, and exhibiting various styles of architecture, The prevailing character, however, is Norman, and it possesses a very ornate porch in that style. The south wall and chancel are of a somewhat later date, and it is stated that while some repairs were being made within the east window, the remains of the original circular ended chancel were discovered. The north-west aisle has either never been built, as is not unusual, or it has been destroyed at some unascertained period, for the spaces between the aisles are built up and furnished with windows. The tower is lofty and curious, having several tiers of obtusely arched stone flooring, to which access is gained by traps broken through the floor, and by ladders placed one above the other. In the chancel are some fine specimens of old stained glass, which were placed there, in 1772, at the expense of Sir Matthew White Ridley, Bart. The church contains a mural tablet to the memory of the Rev. Timothy Myers, who died in 1815, having been vicar of this parish for a period of 29 years. It is much to be regretted that this ancient structure is in so ruinous a state, and it is to be hoped that some steps will soon be taken to preserve so interesting a relic of antiquity. The parish register commences in 1658. The living, a vicarage in the archdeaconry of Northumberland and deanery of Newcastle, is valued in the Liber Regis at £5 13s. 4d., gross income £400. Patron, the Bishop of Durham; vicar, the Rev. H.K. Collinson, M.A. the vicarage, erected in 1745, is situated at a short distance east of the church.
There are two Day and Sunday schools here, one for boys and the other for girls. The. latter was established by the late Lady Ridley. The Boys' School has an endowment of £11 per annum, £9 of which were bequeathed by Mr. John Moore of Well Hill, and the remaining £2 by Mrs. Grey. The average number, in attendance at these schools, amounts to 100 children of both sexes. Mr. Christopher Carrick is teacher, and also librarian to a circulating library of 200 volumes which has been established in the village.
The York, Berwick, and Newcastle Railway Company have a station a short distance east of the village, Robert Potts, station master.
stannington vale township extends from the village of Stannington to the river Blyth, which is here crossed by a handsome stone bridge on the oblique principle. It is a beautiful and romantic district, the banks of the river being finely wooded, and the scenery for some distance eastward of Stannington is greatly admired. It is distant from Morpeth about four miles. The population, acreage, &c., are returned with the parish. Here is a good corn-mill worked by Mr. Robert Anmer.1
William Whellan & Co., History of Northumberland, 1855
1. The surname is unclear owing to a print defect. Anmer is my best guess, but Armer is also possible.
04 March 2008
© Steve Bulman