Annesley parish contains the two townships of Annesley and Felley, comprising 239 inhabitants and 3360 acres of land, and forming a romantic and richly wooded district. The trustees of the late John Musters Esq. are the principal owners and lords of the manor, but the Duke of Portland has an estate here of 289 acres.
Annesley is a small picturesque village, six and a half miles S.S.W. of Mansfield. At the conquest it was of the fee of Ralph Fitz-Hubert, and afterwards was possessed by the Annesleys for many generations, when their heiress carried it in marriage to the Chaworths of Wiverton, with whose late heiress it passed to the late John Musters Esq.
Annesley Hall. the seat of Captain Phillip Hammond, is a large ancient mansion, surrounded by a fine park, well stocked with deer, and extensive woods. The church, dedicated to All Saints, stands on a gentle eminence near the Hall, and has a tower with five bells. The living is a perpetual curacy, certified at £52. The trustees of the late John Musters Esq. are the impropriators and patrons, and the Rev. Richard Howard Frizell is the incumbent. A feast is held on the nearest Sunday to Old All Saints Day.
Annesley Woodhouse. 1 mile north of Annesley, is a hamlet and grange of 289 acres, belonging to the Duke of Portland and the trustees of the late John Musters Esq. A small Wesleyan chapel was erected in 1815, and a new Wesleyan chapel belonging to the Reformers, erected by Thomas and Henry Gelsthorp, in 1832, seating about 250. Here is a neat school, consisting of two rooms, with a house in the centre for the master and mistress, erected and founded by the late John Musters Esq. of Colwick Park and Annesley Hall, in 1847, for the education of 25 boys and the same number of girls, opened May the 8th 1848, and is supported by the trustees of the late John Musters Esq; the free scholars each pay one penny per week for which books &c. are found; Thomas and Charlotte Kirby, master and mistress.
Felley is a hamlet and extra parochial liberty of 300 acres, partly upon a lofty eminence, one and a half miles west by south of Annesley. Here anciently stood a priory, which was founded soon after the Conquest by Raddulph Britto. It was dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary, and was subordinate to the priory of Worksop. In 1260 Jeffrey de Langley gave to the priory and canons here his whole land in Knover on condition that his and his wife's name should be daily mentioned in the mass, and every year one mass should be celebrated with Placebo and Derige on the day of his death, and thirteen poor people should be fed and have a white loaf, a good mess, and a flagon of ale. At its dissolution it was valued at £40 19s 1d. Nothing now remains of the monastic building, except what is incorporated into the large house which is partly occupied by a farmer, whose garden occupies the site of the chapel. The priory farm was purchased by the late John Musters Esq., of a Mr Hodgkinson, who had bought it of the Holdens.
Charities. Mr William Booth, of Annesley Woodhouse, bequeathed in 1825 his house and garden for use of a chapel, and the interest of £325 (at five percent) to be distributed a follows, viz:- £20 to his trustees, £5 to the poor of Annesley Woodhouse, £2 10s for a preaching room, and £5 to the Particular Baptist Minister of Kirkby Woodhouse. About 60 years ago, this donor was surprised by the return of two of his sheep, which had been buried in the forest twenty-nine days, under thirteen feet of snow.
Hammond Captain Phillip, the Hall
Beecroft Thos., coachman, the Hall
Beecroft William, butler, the Hall
Binkley John, framesmith, Annesley Woodhouse
Cromwell Robert, corn miller, Felley
Davis Jno., shoemaker & parish clerk
Flint John, shoemaker
Gelsthorp James & William, corn miller, Blake steam mill, Annesley Woodhouse
Gelsthorp Thos. & Hy., maltsters, Annesley Woodhouse
Gelsthorp William, Wheelwright & blacksmith, Annesley Woodhouse
Horabin William, shopkeeper, Annesley Woodhouse
Kirby Thomas and Charlotte, free school, Annesley Woodhouse
Potter John, gardener, the Hall
Rowe Gaza, vict., Blue Bell, Annesley Woodhouse
Turner Richard, shoemaker
Bland William Felley
Bramley John Felley
Gelsthorp Thos., Annesley Woodhouse
Gelsthorp Wm., Annesley Woodhouse
Goodacre Edmnd G., Toad Hall
Hicton James Annesley Woodhouse
Hodgkinson S. Annesley Woodhouse
Hooton Jph. Park
Rowe Gaza Annesley Woodhouse
Simms J., Lodge
Slater J., Closes
Slaney Rt., Forest
Stafford J., Middle Brook
Taylor James Annesley Woodhouse
Trickett John Annesley Woodhouse
Whiteman Sarah Annesley Woodhouse
White's Directory of Nottinghamshire 1853