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Help and advice for Wolborough 1868

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[Description(s) from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland (1868)]

"WOLBOROUGH, (or Wolborough), a parish in the hundred of Haytor, county Devon, containing Newton-Abbot.

"NEWTON ABBOT, (or Newton), a market town comprising the twin towns of Newton Abbot and Newton Bushell, the former in the parish of Wolborough, and hundred of Haytor, and the latter in the parish of Highweek, and hundred of Teignbridge, county Devon, 5 miles W. by N. of Teignmouth, and 16 S. by W. of Exeter. It is a station on the South Devon railway. It is connected with the seaport of Teignmouth by the river Teign, which is here joined by the Lemon, a small river separating Newton Abbot from Newton Bushell, the former being on the right, and the latter on the left bank of the stream. In the neighbourhood are several high and steep hills, and from All Saints churchyard, about a mile from the town, a view is commanded of the valley of the Teign, with the sea at Teignmouth in the distance bounding the horizon.

The town, which consists of several irregularly-arranged streets, has been much improved within the last few years. The principal streets are paved and lighted with gas, and the town is well supplied with water, but the drainage is still imperfect. The principal buildings are, the townhall, or courthouse, a commodious modern structure; the market-house, erected in 1826; the union workhouse, built at the cost of £13,000, and situated in East-street; two commercial banks; the Globe Hotel, with entrance portico, containing spacious ball and assembly rooms. This last building is situated in Courtenay-street, and was built by the Earl of Devon, at a cost of £6,000. At the top of Wolborough-street, near the ancient tower of the chapel, is a stone pedestal with an inscription commemorative of the reading of the declaration of William Prince of Orange, afterwards William III., on his first landing at Torbay. There are several hotels and inns, a large tannery, iron-foundries, breweries, malting establishments, and flour-mills.

Along the river bank are several convenient wharves, principally used for the loading and unloading of corn, coal, culm, timber, slate, and potters' and pipe clay, of which last above 6,000 tons are annually exported to the Staffordshire and other potteries. The Newfoundland trade, which was formerly carried on with so much success, has entirely ceased, but an active business is done in cattle, corn, and agricultural produce, this being one of the largest markets in the county.

The town is governed by the county magistrates, the portreeves, and other officers, who are chosen annually at the courts leet and baron for the separate manors of Newton Abbot and Newton Bushell, exercising only a nominal jurisdiction. Petty sessions are held on the last Tuesday of each month at the townhall, where also county courts sit monthly. The poor's guardians meet every Wednesday. The Newton Poor-law Union comprises 40 parishes. It is also the seat of a superintendent registry. A short canal of 2½ miles has been cut from the river Teign to join the tram rail-road, which conveys the produce of the Haytor granite quarries from the Dartmoor.

About half a mile to the E. of the town is Ford House, an old Elizabethan mansion, where Charles I. slept on two several occasions, and where William Prince of Orange, was entertained on his first landing. It was formerly the seat of the Reynell family, but is now the property of the Duke of Devonshire, who has leased it to H. Cartwright, Esq. Another old seat is Bradley House, about the same distance to the W. of the town.

There are two chapels-of-ease situated in the town; the one in Wolborough-street is within the parish of the same name, and that of St. Mary, in Newton Bushell, is in the parish of Highweek. Many of the inhabitants, however, attend Divine service at either of the parish churches, that of Wolborough being an ancient structure with a tower, situated near three-quarters of a mile to the S. of the town; while Highweek parish church is a little above the same distance to the N.W. There are places of worship for Wesleyans, Reformed Wesleyans, Baptists, and Independents. The local charities include Lady Reynell's almshouses for aged widows, with an income from endowment of £80. There are a free school and a National school. Near Hacknield Ford, on the old Roman road Icknield Street, is a treble-ditched camp called Milberdown. The Teignbridge races take place near the town in July.

Market days are Wednesday and Saturday, most business being done on the former day. Fairs are held on the last Wednesday in February for cattle, on the first Wednesday after the 24th June, Wednesday after the 11th September, and Wednesday after the 6th November, for horses, cattle, cheese, and general merchandise.

Transcribed by Colin Hinson ©2003