"GREAT DRIFFIELD, a parish partly within the liberty of ST-PETER-OF-YORK, but chiefly in the Bainton- Beacon division of the wapentake of HARTHILL, East riding of the county of YORK, comprising the market-town of Great Driffield, the chapelry of Little Driffield, and the township of Emswell with Kelleythorpe, and containing 2471 inhabitants, of which number, 2303 are in the town of Great Driffield, 29 miles N.E. from York, and 193 N. from London. The town is agreeably situated at the foot of the Wolds, near the source of one of the streams which being united form the river Hull. It consists principally of a long street, extending from north to south, parallel to which runs the brook, which at the southern extremity of the town is enlarged into a navigable canal, joining the Hull below Frodingham bridge, after a course of three miles. The soil is particularly adapted to the production of corn, the trade in which has greatly increased within the last fifty years, owing partly to the facility for water carriage afforded by th canal. The market is on Thursday, when the quantity of grain brought for sale is often very considerable. The living is a discharged vicarage, rated in the king's books at £7. 10. 2., endowed with £100 private benefaction, and £200 royal bounty, and in the peculiar jurisdiction and patronage of the Precentor in the Cathedral Church of York, as Prebendary of Driffield. The church, dedicated to All Saints, is an ancient structure, with a steeple in the later English style, built by one of the Hotham family. Here are places of worship for Baptists, Independents, and Primitive and Wesleyan Methodists. A dispensary is supported by. voluntary contributions; also a National school for one hundred children, established in 1816. At Danes Hill, a hamlet in this parish, is a great number of tumuli, called "Danes Graves," supposed to be the monu-- ments of Danish chiefs who fell in some engagement in the vicinity."
"EMSWELL, a township, joint with Kelleythorpe, in that part of the parish of GREAT DRIFFIELD, which is in the Bainton-Beacori division of the wapentake of HARTHILL, East riding of- the county of YORK, 2 miles W. from Great Driffield, containing 93 inhabitants."
"KELLEYTHORPE, a township in the parish of Great Driffield, joint with Emswell, in the Bainton-Beacon division of the wapentake of HARTHILL, East riding of the county of YORK, 2 miles S.W. from Great Driffield, containing 93 inhabitants."
"LITTLE DRIFFIELD, a chapelry in the parish of GREAT-DRIFFIELD, partly within the liberty of ST-PETER-of-YORK, and partly in the Bainton-Beacon division of the wapentake of HARTHILL, East riding of the county of YORK, 1 mile W. from Great Driffield, containing 75 inhabitants. The living is a perpetual curacy, rated in the king's books at £5. 3. 4., endowed with- £100 private benefaction, and £700 parliamentary grant, and in the peculiar jurisdiction and patronage of the Precentor in the Cathedral Church of York, as Prebendary of Driffield. The church, dedicated to St. Peter, was taken down and rebuilt in 1807; the ancient structure was celebrated as the burial-place of Alfred, King of Northumberland, who died in 705, to whose memory an inscription is still preserved against the. south wall of the chancel. There is a place of worship for Wesleyan Methodists. Fairs are held on Easter-- Monday, Whit-Monday, August 26th, and September 19th, for horses, cattle, and sheep."
[Transcribed by Mel Lockie © from
Lewis's Topographical Dictionary of England 1835]