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Wapentake of Langbaurgh (West Division) - Poor Law Union and County Court District of Stokesley - Petty Sessional and Electoral Divisions of Yarm - Rural Deanery of Stokesley - Archdeaconry of Cleveland - Diocese of York.
This parish, comprising 1,391 acres, extends about two miles along the east bank of the Leven, opposite Kirk Levington. It is a purely agricultural district with a fertile soil, which is chiefly a strong gravelly clay. The inhabitants numbered at the last census 135, an increase of eight since 1861. Rateable value, £1,653.
The earliest recorded owners of Hilton were the Meynills, one of whom, Roger de Hilton, some time in the 12th century, granted to his brother, Walter de Mainill, lands in Snotterdon, and in 1203, William, grandson of the above Roger, granted the manor of Hilton to his brother, Hugo de Menil. Robert Meynill, of Hilton, his descendant, was appointed sergeant-at-law in 1547. From this family Hilton passed to the Morleys, of Normanby, who, in the time of Charles II., sold it to the Lowthers, of Marske. From this family it was purchased by the Cavendishes, who sold it, in 1856 or 1857, to John Hay, Esq., of Cresswell House, Co. Durham, and it is now the property of his son, Col. Hay, of Hyde Park, London, The estate, which is co-extensive with the parish, is now offered for sale, and is described in the catalogues as comprised within a ring fence, freehold, and subject to a vicarial tithe rent-charge of £12 12s., which is paid by the tenants. The mansion, called Hilton Manor, is a large brick building, recently erected in the village, and surrounded by shrubberies, plantations, and park lands, and approached by a winding avenue.
The village of Hilton is small and stands on a bold eminence four miles E.S.E. of Yarm, and the same distance N.W. by W. of Stokesley. The church (St. Peter) is a small edifice, believed to date from the 11th century, and still retains two of its ancient Norman doorways. It was restored in 1873. A small stone reredos of neat design, with a marble cross in the centre, was erected, in 1887, to the memory of Douglas Errol Hay, son of Richard Henry Hay. Hilton was anciently a chapel-of-ease to Rudby; subsequently it was made a perpetual curacy, and in recent years has been constituted a vicarage. The living, annual value of £140, is in the gift of the lord of the manor, and held by the Rev. A. F. Faithfull.
The school is a neat building, erected about 10 years ago for the benefit of Hilton and Middleton. It is well attended, and is nearly self-supporting, any deficiency being made up by the landowners of the two places.
[Description(s) from Bulmer's History and Directory of North Yorkshire (1890)]
Scan, OCR and html by Colin Hinson. Checking and correction by Peter Nelson.