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"CHEDDAR, a parish in the hundred of Winterstoke, in the county of Somerset, 2 miles S.E. of Axbridge station of the Great Western railway. It is situated under the Mendip hills, on the Cheddar river (from which it takes its name, ced dwr, or "hill stream "),which joins the river Axe. This village, noted for its cheese, was formerly a considerable market town, and the old market cross is still standing. Alfred the Great had a hunting-seat here. The living is a vicarage* in the diocese of Bath and Wells, value £203, in the patronage of the Dean and Chapter of Wells. The church, dedicated to St. Andrew, is a spacious building with a Gothic tower, and contains brasses to the Cheddar family. The register commences in 1687. Here are chapels belonging to the Baptists, Wesleyans, and Primitive. Methodists, also National schools. The annual value of the charities is about £180. Owing to the declivity of the Mendip hills, the scenery is most beautiful. In the Cheddar cliffs one of the many chasms extends almost a mile in length, the walls of which rise more than 400 feet perpendicularly. About 1840, a beautiful stalactite cave was discovered." From The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland (1868) Transcribed by Colin Hinson © 2003
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