"BLYTHE, a parish comprising the chapelry of Austerfield in the northern, and the chapelry of Bawtry in the southern, division of the wapentake of STRAFFORTH and TICKHILL, West riding of the county of YORK, the township of Ranskill, within the liberty of SOUTHWELL-and-SCROOBY, the market-town of Blyth, the townships of Barnby-Moor with Bilby, Styrrup, and Torworth, and the lordship of Hodsock, in the Hatfield division of the wapentake of BASSETLAW, county of NOTTINGHAM, 31 miles N.E. from Nottingham, and 151 N.N.W. from London, on the old road to York, and containing 3456 inhabitants. This place, anciently called Blia and Blida, was chiefly noted in former times for its religious and charitable establishments. In 1088, a priory was founded in honour of the Blessed Virgin, by Roger de Builly and his wife Muriel, for monks of the Benedictine order, which, though considered as an Alien priory, being in some respects subordinate to the abbey of the Holy Trinity, near Rouen in Normandy, was spared at the suppression of Alien priories, and subsisted till the general dissolution, when its revenue was estimated at £ 126.8. 2. An hospital for lepers, dedicated to St. John the Evangelist, was founded by Hugh de Cressy, lord of Hodsock, in the reign of John, for a warden, three chaplains, and brethren, the revenue of which, at the dissolution, was £8. 14.: of these buildings, as well as of a strong castle which is said to have been anciently erected here, there are not any remains. The town-is clean, well built, pleasantly situated, and amply supplied with water. The market is on Wednesday; and the fairs are on Holy Thursday and October 20th. The living is a discharged vicarage, in the archdeaconry of Nottingham, and diocese of York, rated in the king's books at £ 14. 9.4., endowed with £220 private benefaction, and £200 royal bounty, and in the patronage of the Master and Fellows of Trinity College, Cambridge. The church, dedicated to St. Martin, is a lofty structure in the Norman style, and once formed the ante-choir of the splendid cruciform church of the priory; it has a handsome tower, in the later style of English architecture, with crocketed pinnacles. There are places of worship for the Society of Friends and Wesleyan Methodists. A school for ten poor children of the town, and for two from each of the adjoining townships, is endowed with land producing £18 per annum, to which £5 from the parish funds is annually added as a salary to the master, who is appointed by the vicar of the parish, Almshouses for six aged people, who have a small allowance of money and coal, have been lately rebuilt, and are supposed to have been originally an appendage to the hospital foxinded by Hugh de Cressy. There are also almshouses for two aged women, endowed with £10 per annum, under the management of seven trustees, chosen from the Society of Friends, besides other charitable bequests for the relief of the poor."
"AUSTERFIELD, a chapelry in that part of the parish of BLYTHE, which is in the northern division of the wapentake of STRAFFORTH and TICKHILL, West riding of the county of YORK, 1J mile N.N.E. from Bawtry, containing 242 inhabitants."
"BAWTRY, a market-town and chapelry in that part of the parish of BLYTHE, which is in the southern division of the wapentake of STRAFFORTH and TICKHILL, West riding of the county of YORK, 411%miles S.E. from York, and 153 N.W. from London, on the great north road, containing 1027 inhabitants. This town is situated on the river Idle, which separates the counties of York and Nottingham, and near the Roman road leading from Agelocum, Littleborough, to Danum, Doncaster. It consists of three streets, the principal of which is very spacious, and contains many handsome and well-built houses j it is partly paved, and amply supplied with water from springs and from the river, over which a neat substantial stone bridge was erected in 1811, at an expense of £4000. The trade, which has greatly declined since the construction of the Chesterfield canal, and the erection of a bridge over the Trent at Gainsborough, arises chiefly from the inland navigation, and consists in supplying London, Hull, and other places, with corn, oak timber, and stone, of which last, that called the Roche Abbey stone is much esteemed by statuaries and architects. The river is navigable for craft of from twelve to twenty-four tons burden, by which means the town is supplied with coal, grocery, &c. The market is on Thursday: fairs for horses, horned cattle, and sheep are on the Thursday in Whitsun-week, and Old Martinmas-day. The magistrates for the West riding hold petty sessions here for the district, and constables and other oflicers are appointed at the court leet of the lord of the manor. The chapel, dedicated to St. Nicholas, was erected in the reign of Henry II., and rebuilt in 1686: the tower, which is strengthened by buttresses, and crowned with pinnacles, was added in 1712. There are places of worship for Independents and Wesleyan Methodists. A small school-room has been built by subscription on the waste land adjoining the town, in which eight boys are taught reading, writing, and arithmetic. At Serooby, one mile from the town, was a palace belonging to the Archbishops of York, in which Cardinal Wolsey resided, and afterwards Archbishop Sandys, whose daughter is interred in the chancel of the chapel: the remains have been converted into a farm-house."
[Transcribed by Mel Lockie © from
Lewis's Topographical Dictionary of England 1835]