"MEREWORTH, a parish in the hundred of Littlefield, lathe of Aylesford, county Kent, 7 miles W. of Maidstone, its post town, and 2½ from Wateringbury railway station on the North Kent line. It is a small agricultural village situated on the high road from Tonbridge to Maidstone. The parish includes the hamlet of Old Hay, and is bounded on the N. by the Hurst woods. Mereworth came from a crusader of the same name to the Fitzalans, Beauchamps, Nevilles, and Fanes. The land is partly in orchards and hop-grounds, and there are some tracts of grazing land. The surface is boldly undulating, and the soil a light-coloured mould resting on a substratum of Kentish ragstone. The tithes have been commuted for a rent-charge of £822 10s. The living is a rectory in the diocese of Canterbury, value £634. The church, dedicated to St. Lawrence, was rebuilt by John Earl of Westmoreland, in 1744. It has a spired tower containing six bells, and an E. window and monuments of the Fanes, with three canopied brasses of Sir John de Mereworth bearing date 1365. The register dates from 1661. The parochial charities produce about £60 per annum. There is a National school for both sexes erected at the expense of Viscount Falmouth, who resides at Mereworth Castle. The castle is situated in an extensive park with an avenue 3 miles in length. The interior of the castle has a gallery of choice pictures. The castle was built after Palladio's "Villa Capra" by Campbell, the editor of "Vitruvius Britannicus." The Viscountess Falmouth is lady of the manor."
[Transcribed from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland 1868 by Colin Hinson ©2010]