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Ancroft Chapelry, 1855

Extract from: History, Topography, and Directory of Northumberland...Whellan, William, & Co, 1855.



ANCROFT is a parochial chapelry, comprising the townships of Ancroft, Cheswick, Haggerston, and Scremerston, whose united area is 10,210 acres. Population in 1801, 1,144; in 1811, 1,236; in 1821, 1,378; in 1831, 1,384; in 1841, 1,670; and in 1851, 1,883 souls. 


ANCROFT. The township of Ancroft is the property of Earl Grey and Edward Sibbitt, Esq., the former of whom owns Ancroft, and the latter the village of Greenses. The township was anciently possessed by the Colvil family, but during the 14th century it lay waste, in consequence of the incursions of the Scots. It afterwards became the property of the Greys, by whom it was forfeited, in 1416, on the rebellion of Sir Thomas Grey, but was subsequently restored to the family, with whom it has since remained. Lady Stanley, of Haggerston, is lady of the manor. The acreage, etc., of this township are returned with those of the chapelry. Coal and lime abound here, and brick and tile making are carried on to a great extent. 

THE VILLAGE of Ancroft is situated six miles south of Berwick, and ten miles north of Belford. It appears to have been at one time a place of some importance, but "the days of its glories are o'er," and it is now a small village. THE CHURCH is a very ancient structure, erected previous to the year 1145, for we find that in that year it was confirmed to the mother church of Holy Island, by Pope Eugenius III. The edifice was enlarged and thoroughly repaired in 1836, by which means 170 additional sittings were obtained, and in consequence of a grant from the Incorporated Society for building and repairing churches, etc., 111 of that number are declared free and unappropriated for ever, in addition to 130 formerly provided, 70 of which were free. It was formerly subordinate to the vicarage of Holy Island, but now enjoys all the privileges of a distinct parish. The register commences in 1742. The living, a perpetual curacy in the archdeaconry of Lindisfarne, and deanery of Norham, is valued at £17; gross income, £133. Patrons, the Dean and Chapter of Durham; incumbent, the Rev. William Hewitt. The Bishop and Dean and Chapter of Durham, and the late Archdeacon of Northumberland, erected at their joint expense a public school here, which is now attended by about eighty pupils; Joseph Graham, teacher. The Presbyterians have a neat chapel and school at Ancroft Moor. Rev. William Ryder, minister. 

GREENSES is a village in this township, the property of Edward Sibbit, Esq., of Greenses House. It is situated one mile and a half north-west of Ancroft, and four miles south of Berwick. 

POST 0FFICE, ANCROFT, Joseph Graham, postmaster. Letters arrive, from Berwick, at 1p.m., and are despatched thereto at 7-30 p.m. 


Atkinson Robert, corn-miller and farmer, Ancroft Mil 

Bell Adam, farmer; ho. Ord

Dods Ann, vict. Board, Camp Houses 

Graham Joseph H. teacher & parish clerk

Grey George A. farmer, Ancroft Moor; ho. Whitfield Hill

Hewitt Rev. Wm. incumbent, Parsonage

Hogg Thomas, cartwright

Kerr Thomas, vict. and farmer, Lamb Inn

Lisle William, farmer, North Farm

Pinkerton Thomas, farmer, lime burner, and brick and tile manufacturer, Stead

Oswald Thomas, lime- burner, Greenses

Ray Edward, manager of works, West Allerdean

Sibbit Edward, Esq., Greenses House

Sibbit John, corn-miller, Allerdean Mill 

Smith George, farmer, Town Farm, and Loan End

Tait Henry, blacksmith

Tait Henry, schoolmaster, North Moor

Tait William, farmer, South Moor 

Thompson George, farmer, Oxford

Wood George, farmer and coal proprietor, Allerdene


CHESWICK is a township and village , the property of Robert Crossman, Esq., John Hemsworth, Esq., and Richard Taylor, Esq. The manor of Cheswick was formerly possessed. by a family which bore the local name, but through the failure of the male line it was transferred by marriage to several families. Lady Stanley of Haggerston is the present possessor of the manorial rights. THE VILLAGE of Cheswick is situated about five miles S.S.E. of Berwick LADYTHORN HOUSE. is pleasantly situated on an eminence from which a beautiful prospect, embracing Holy Island, the Farn Islands, and the coast from Bambrough Castle to Berwick, may be obtained. 


Anderson Jno. registrar of births, deaths, & marriages, relieving officer, and assistant overseer for Islandshire, Cheswick West Hall 

Watson Edward, cartwright

Watson Harriet and Mary J., dressmakers and shopkeepers 


Chisholme Gcorge, Cheswick-buildings; ho. Fenwick Granary

Knox John, Cheswick Cottage

Me. Gregor George, Windmill Rill

Rutherford Edward, and vict. New Inn 

Thompson Richard, Cheswick East House 


HAGGERSTON, a township and hamlet in this chapelry, is the property of Lady Massey Stanley, who is also lady of the manor. This township has been the property of the Haggerston family from time immemorial. Sir Thomas Haggerston, the first baronet, was colonel of the Northumberland regiment, which was so distinguished for its attachment to the monarch during the parliamentary wars. His eldest son John being killed at Ormskirk fight, the second son Thomas succeeded to the estates, and his eldest son having attached himself to the cause of his monarch, James II., was killed in Ireland, when the family honours devolved upon his grandson Sir Carnaby, and on his demise, in 1756, they were inherited by his son Sir Thomas Haggerston. He was succeeded, in 1777, by his eldest son Sir Carnaby, who married Frances, daughter of William Smythe, Esq., by whom he had issue one daughter. She was married in January, 1805, to Sir Thomas Massey Stanley, Bart., of Hooton, in Cheshire, who died in August, 1841. Lady Massey Stanley resides at Haggerston Castle, a fine mansion situated in a spacious park. The old castle of Haggerston was destroyed by fire, in 1618, with the exception of one of the towers which still remains, and is memorable as being the place where Edward II. received the homage of Thomas, Earl of Lancaster, for the earldom of Lincoln, in 1311. Attached to the house is a Catholic Church dedicated to Our Lady and St. Cuthbert. The Very Rev. Monsignor Charles Eyre, is chaplain. THE HAMLET of Haggerston is situated six and a half miles S.S.E. of Berwick. 

POST OFFICE, HAGGERSTON.- Isaac Reed, postmaster. Letters arrive at 12 noon, and are despatched at 8 a.m. 


Boyd John, gamekeeper

Eyre Very Rev. Monsignor Charles, chaplain

Main lgnatius, farmer, Brockmill

Main Thomas, steward, Haggerston Mead

Murray Thomas, blacksmith 

Me. Gregor John, farmer and cornmiller, Bridge Mill 

Rutherford Dorothy, farmer, New Haggerston 

Stanley Lady Massey, Haggerston Castle

Simmons Mr. Thomas, The Barns 


SCREMERSTON is a township and village, the property of Greenwich Hospital. The manorial rights are in dispute between the Hospital Commissioners and Lady Stanley. This estate was formerly the property of the Radcliffe W:nily, but on the attainder of the Earl of Derwentwater, it was given to Greenwich Hospital. The Scremerston Colliery is worked by Messrs. Carr & Co., and gives employment to 120 persons. The manufacture of lime, bricks, tiles, and sanitary piping, is extensively carried on here by Messrs. Carr & Co., and R. Hall & Co., of Alnwick. T H E VILLAGE of Scremerston is situated Dear the sea shore, three and a half miles S.S E. of Berwick. It was destroyed by the Scots in the year 1386, but was subsequently rebuilt. THE CHURCH, dedicated to St. Peter, is a good stone building, with tower and spire, in the early English style of architecture, and was erected in 1843, at a cost of about £1,000. The living, a perpetual curacy valued at £130 per annum, h in the archdeaconry of Lindisfarne and deanery of Norharr1. Pa~ trons, the Dean and Chapter of Durham; incumbent, the Rev. Hugh Evans, M.A. THE NATIONAL SCHOOL is a neat stone building, erected in l842, at a. cost, inclusive of teacher's house, of £400, and is capable of accommodating about 130 scholars, average attendance 116. The Commissioners of Greenwich Hospital pay £10 per annum towards the support of the school. 

POST OFFICE, RICHARDSON'S STEAD, SCREMERSTPN.-William Lewens, postmaster. Letters arrive at 11-30 a.m., and are despatched at 8-45 a.m. 


Blackett William, blacksmith and agricultural implement maker

Carr & Co. brick, tile, and sanitary pipe manufacturers, Scremerston Tile Works, coal owners, Scremerston Colliery and lime burners, Sea Side Lime Works

Carr Thomas, manager for R. Hall & Co.

Evans Rev. Hugh, incumbent, Parsonage

Hall R. & Co. brick and tile manufacturers

Hall William, station master

Hogarth Robert, farmer, Inland Pasture

Johnson Mrs. Major, Sea Side Houses 

Lewens William, grocer, and provision dealer

Morallee Henry, viewer

Pringle Edward, farmer, Borewell

Renton David, manager for Carr & Co. Scremerston Tile Works

Richardson Ralph, manager for Carr & Co. Sea Side Lime Works

Thompson Alexander, farmer Town Farm, 

Winter John, manager, Sea Side Brick and Tile Works 

Young William, shopkeeper 


Ancroft Civil Parish Haggerston Ancroft Cheswick Islandshire, 1855 Scremerston Northumberland Parishes and Townships - 1855


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