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"SHAPWICK, a parish in the hundred of Whitley, county Somerset, 4½ miles from Street, its post town, and 6½ S.W. of Glastonbury. It has a station on the Somerset and Dorset railway. The village, which is of small extent, and chiefly agricultural, is situated on the road from Bath to Exeter. The soil is of a clayey nature upon a subsoil of blue lias stone, which is quarried for building purposes. A canal from the Bristol Channel at Highbridge passes through the parish. There is a mineral spring called the Holy Well, the waters of which resemble in their properties those of Harrogate. The living is a vicarage with the perpetual curacy of Ashcroft annexed, in the diocese of Bath and Wells, value £215. The church, dedicated to St. Mary, is an ancient structure, with a tower containing five bells. The interior of the church contains tablets of the Strangeway family. The church has recently undergone thorough restoration. The parochial charities produce about £8 per annum. There is a National school for both sexes. Shapwick House is the principal residence." From The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland (1868) Transcribed by Colin Hinson © 2003

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