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Hamstall Ridware

"Hamstall Ridware is a small village lying north of Mavesyn and Pipe Ridwares, in the vale of the Blythe rivulet, eight miles N of Lichfield and four miles E by N of Rugeley. Its parish contains 391 inhabitants, and 2959 acres of land, of which 435 acres is an allotment made at the enclosure of Needwood Forest, in which is included Hoarcross Park and The Rough, belonging to HCM Ingram, Esq, and distant nearly three miles N of the village. In the parish are also the hamlets of Netherton and Sandborough, within one mile of the village, and a number of scattered houses. Lord Leigh is owner of most of the land, and lord of the manor, which, before the Norman conquest, was held under the Earl of Mercia, and in the reign of Henry I by William de Ridware. In the beginning of the 17th century, it passed to the Leigh family, of Stoneleigh Abbey, Warwickshire.
The ancient manor house, now occupied by a farmer, is an extensive edifice of brick and stone, formerly fitted up in a style of great magnificance. Near it stands a tower gateway and a watch tower. The latter is 50 feet high, and open at the top, which commands a fine prospect of the surrounding country. "
[From History, Gazetteer and Directory of Staffordshire, William White, Sheffield, 1851]

Cemeteries

A transcript of the Monumental Inscriptions of the church of Hamstall Ridware, St Michael, (together with Pipe Ridware, St James) has been published by the Birmingham & Midland SGH.

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Census

The population of Hamstall Ridware parish was as follows:
1831 -- 443
1841 -- 391

A full transcript of the 1851 census for Hamstall Ridware parish is included in the Lichfield, Part 2, Volume II, census transcript published by the Birmingham & Midland SGH.

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Church History

"The Parish Church, near the manor house, is a small ancient structure dedicated to St Michael, and having in its windows some painted glass. It has several monuments, one of which is to the memory of the Rev Thomas Allastree, MA, who was a minister of the Church of England for 54 years, composed 500 sermons and preached 5000 times. The rectory is in the patronage of Lord Leigh, and incumbency of the Hon & Rev HP Cholmondeley, MA."
[From History, Gazetteer and Directory of Staffordshire, William White, Sheffield, 1851]

A view of St Michael's Church, Hamstall Ridware (1).
A view of St Michael's Church, Hamstall Ridware (2).
A view of St Michael's Church, Hamstall Ridware (3).

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Church Records

Church of England Registers
The parish register of the church of St Michael commences in 1598. The original registers for the period 1598-1879 (Bapts), 1598-1988 (Mar) & 1598-1967 (Bur) are deposited at Staffordshire Record Office.
Bishops Transcripts, 1662-1883 (with gaps 1668-70, 1751-59, 1773-76 & 1858-65) are deposited at Lichfield Record Office.
A printed transcript of the register for 1598-1812 was published in two parts by the Staffordshire Parish Register Society in 1904 & 1906, and has been reprinted by the Birmingham & Midland SGH.

Description and Travel

A transcription of the section on Hamstall Ridware from A Topographical History of Staffordshire by William Pitt (1817)

Poorhouses, Poor Law etc

Hamstall Ridware parish became part of Lichfield Union following the Poor Law Amendment Act of 1834.

Societies

The Ridware History Society site includes many useful resources on the parish of Hamstall Ridware.

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