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EAST WITTON:
Geographical and Historical information from the year 1868.

"EAST WITTON, a parish in the wapentake of West Hang, North Riding county York, 2 miles S.E. of Middleham, 4 S.E. of Leyburn, and 10 S.W. of Bedale. The village is situated near the confluence of the rivers Cover and Ure. The parish comprises the townships of Witton Within and Witton Without, including the hamlets of Colsterdale, Cover Bridge, where is an extensive brewery, Newstead, Jervaulx Abbey, and Kilgram Bridge. The soil is generally light, consisting of sand and gravel. At Braithwaite is a lead mine, and in the neighbourhood are quarries of excellent freestone well adapted for grindstones. About a mile E. of the village are the ruins of Jervaulx Abbey, founded in 1141, in honour of the Virgin Mary, which at the Dissolution had a revenue of 455 10s. 5d. These remains, having been cleared from rubbish at the commencement of the present century-when a tesselated pavement was uncovered, but which has since perished by exposure to the air-are now surrounded by a wall and sunk fence. The living is a vicarage* in the diocese of Ripon, value 100. The church, dedicated to St. John the Evangelist or to St. Ella, was built in 1812, at the expense of the late Earl of Aylesbury, in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the accession of George III. Divine service is also performed at the schoolhouse in Colsterdale. There are schools for boys and girls, erected and partially endowed by the Marquis of Aylesbury, in 1817. The charities produce about 20 per annum. Fairs are held on the 3rd May and 20th November for cattle and sheep. The Marquis of Aylesbury is lord of the manor."


"BIRKS, a hamlet in the parish of East Witton, wapentake of Hang, in the North Riding of the county of York, 3 miles from Middleham."


"COVER BRIDGE, a hamlet in the parish of East Witton, wapentake of West Hang, in the North Riding of the county of York, 2 miles S.E. of Middleham. It is situated on the river Cover, a branch of the Ure."


"JERVAULX, (or Joreval Abbey), a hamlet in the parish of East Witton, wapentake of West Hang, North Riding county York, 3 miles S.E. of Middleham. It is situated on the river Ure or Yore, and in the reign of Edward I. sent members to parliament. It is now an inconsiderable place, chiefly known as the seat of the Marquis of Ailesbury. The gateway and some minor ruins still remain of the Cistercian abbey, originally founded in 1145, but rebuilt twelve years later."


"KILGRIM BRIDGE, a hamlet in the parish of East Witton, and wapentake of West Hang, North Riding county York, 2 miles S.E. of Middleham. It is situated on the river Ure."


"NEWSTEAD, a hamlet in the parish of East Witton, wapentake of West Hang, North Riding county York, 4 miles N.W. of Masham, and 3 S.E. of Middleham. It is situated on the river Ure."


"ULSHAW BRIDGE, a hamlet in the parish of East Witton, wapentake of West Hang, North Riding county York, 2 miles S.E. of Middleham."

[Transcribed from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland 1868]
by Colin Hinson 2003


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