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National Gazetteer (1868) - Ovingham

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The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland - 1868

"OVINGHAM, a parish in the E. division of Tynedale ward, county Northumberland, N.W. of Newcastle, 10 miles E. of Hexham, its post town, and a quarter of a mile N. of the Prudhoe railway station. The village, which is of small extent, is situated on the northern bank of the river Tyne, over which is a ferry. The parish, which is extensive, comprises the townships of Wylam, Welton, Spittle, Mickley, Prudhoe, Ovington, and 12 others. Ovingham was formerly a market town, and is still a place of considerable importance, containing an iron foundry, dyeworks, bleach-grounds, and a brewery. There are remains of a priory of Black Canons, founded as a cell to Hexham Abbey by one of the Umfravilles. Its revenue at the Dissolution was returned at £13 4s. 8d. The inhabitants are chiefly engaged in agriculture and in the coal mines. The living is a perpetual curacy* in the diocese of Durham, value £161. The church, dedicated to St. Mary, is a cruciform structure, with an ancient tower, containing three bells. The church was thoroughly restored in 1857. The register dates from 1679. There is also a district church at Mickley, the living of which is a perpetual curacy, value £76. The parochial charities produce about £14 per annum. There is a National school for both sexes, in which a Sunday-school is also held. The Duke of Northumberland is lord of the manor."

"DUKERS HAGG, a township in the parish of Ovingham, eastern division of Tynedale ward, in the county of Northumberland, 2½ miles S.E. of the Prudhoe station on the Newcastle and Carlisle railway. The Duke of Northumberland is lord of the manor and sole proprietor."

"ELTRINGHAM, a township in the parish of Ovingham, E. division of Tynedale ward, county Northumberland, 1 mile N. W. of Prudhoe, and 12 miles W. of Newcastle. Gateshead is its post town. It is situated on the S. bank of the Tyne, across which there is a ferry. The extra-parochial place of Masters Close joins this township, and the Newcastle and Carlisle railway intersects it. Coal is abundant, and fire-bricks are manufactured."

"FFERTON, a township in the parish of Ovingham, E. division of Tynedale ward, county Northumberland, 2 miles N. of the Prudhoe railway station, and 8 E. of Hexham. The township, which is of small extent, is situated on the road from Corbridge to Newcastle-on-Tyne, and is about 2 miles N.W. of the river Tyne. There are vestiges of an old monastic building, said to have been occupied by banditti in the reign of Henry VI. In this township is a colliery giving employment to many of the inhabitants. It is a meet for the Tynedale hounds."

"HARLOW HILL, a township in the parish of Ovingham, E. division of Tynedale ward, county Northumberland, 3 miles N. of Prudhoe railway station, and 10 W. of Newcastle-on-Tyne. It is situated near the Roman wall on the line of the great military road. The soil is clayey. The Duke of Northumberland is sole landowner."

"HEDLEY WOODSIDE, a township in the parish of Ovingham, E. division of Tynedale ward, county Northumberland, 10 miles S.E. of Hexham, and 3½ from the Stocksfield station on the Newcastle and Carlisle railway. The Duke of Northumberland is lord of the manor and chief landowner."

"HEDLEY-ON-THE-HILL, a township in the parish of Ovingham, E. division of Tynedale ward, county Northumberland, 10½ miles from Hexham, and 3½ S.E. of Stocksfield station on the Newcastle and Carlisle railway. There is a coal mine in the neighbourhood. The Wesleyans have a small chapel. The soil and subsoil are principally clay. The Duke of Northumberland is lord of the manor and principal landowner."

"HORSLEY, a township in the parish of Ovingham, county Northumberland, 2½ miles N.W. of Wylam, 1 mile N. of Ovingham, and 2 miles from the Prudhoe railway station. It is a small township, situated on the N. side of the river Tyne, and on the road from Newcastle to Hexham. The Independents and Wesleyans have each a chapel."

"MASTERS-CLOSE, an an extra-parochial place in the ward of Tynedale, county Northumberland, 9 miles E. of Hexham."

"MICKLEY, a township and chapelry in the parish of Ovingham, E. division of Tynedale ward, county Northumberland, 2 miles S.E. of Stocksfield, and 10 S.E. of Hexham. It is a station on the Newcastle and Carlisle section of the North-Eastern railway. It is situated near Mickley Grange, and on the turnpike road leading from Hexham to Newcastle. A portion of the inhabitants are engaged in the collieries. The soil consists of clay and loam. The living is a perpetual curacy in the diocese of Durham, value £62. The church was erected in 1824. There is an endowed school with accommodation for two hundred children, erected at the expense of the owner of Mickley colliery, and is under government inspection. W. B. Wrightson is lord of the manor and chief landowner."

"OVINGTON, a township in the parish of Ovingham, E. division of Tynedale ward, county Northumberland, 2 miles N.E. of Stocksfield, 9 E. of Hexham, and 12 W. of Newcastle-upon-Tyne. The village, which is of small extent, is situated on the northern bank of the river Tyne. Malting and brewing are extensively carried on. There is a parochial school for both sexes. Ovington Hall and Ovington Cottage are the principal residences."

"PRUDHOE and PRUDHOE CASTLE, townships in the parish of Ovingham, E. division of Tynedale ward, county Northumberland, 1 mile S. of the Prudhoe station on the Newcastle and Carlisle railway, and 10½ miles E. of Hexham. The village, which is of small extent, is situated on the river Tyne. A portion of the inhabitants are engaged in the collieries, and some in the tile and brick kilns. On a rocky eminence, 60 feet above the river Tyne, are the ruined keep and ivy-mantled towers of the castle given to the Umfranvilles by William the Conqueror. This fortress was ably defended in 1174 against William of Scotland, and subsequently came through the first Earl of Northumberland to the Percys. There is a place of worship for the Wesleyans. The Duke of Northumberland is lord of the manor."

"ROUCHESTER, (or Rudchester), a township in the parish of Ovingham, E. division of Tynedale ward, county Northumberland, 8 miles N.W. of Newcastle. It is situated near the river Tyne, and is supposed to be the site of Vindobala, or Hunnum on the Wall, mentioned by Antonine, where the first cohort of the Frixagi were stationed. In 1766 coins of Othe and other emperors were discovered here, also a Hercules. The Elcho hounds meet in this neighbourhood.

"SPITTLE, a township in the parish of Ovingham, E. division of Tynedale ward, county Northumberland, 9 miles N.E. of Hexham."

"WELTON, a township in the parish of Ovingham, county Northumberland, 9 miles N.E. of Hexham. It has an ancient tower near the line of the Roman wall, and was once the residence of King Oswy, and the place where the Kings Penda and Sigebert received the rites of baptism from Finan, Bishop of Lindisfarne."

"WHITTLE, a township in the parish of Ovingham, E. division of Tynedale ward, county Northumberland, 9 miles W. of Newcastle."

"WYLAM, a township in the parish of Ovingham, E. division of Tynedale ward, county Northumberland, 9 miles W. of Newcastle-on-Tyne, and 2 E. of Ovingham. It has stations on the Newcastle and Carlisle section of the North-Eastern and on the Border Counties branch of the North British railways. It is situated chiefly on the N. bank of the Tyne, over which is a bridge leading to the railway station, and to Wylam Wood, a detached portion of the township on the S. side of the river, where is a rich vein of ironstone. There are extensive collieries, stone quarries, a shot factory, and a blast furnace for the manufacture of pig-iron. At the W. end of the village is Wylam Hall, anciently a peel, or border stronghold, with its stone arch of 60 feet in length. It originally was an appurtenance to the monastery of Tynemouth, but at the Dissolution was granted to the Fenwicks, of Fenwick Tower, from whom it passed to the Blacketts, who have held the manor since the reign of Charles II. George Stephenson, the celebrated engineer, was born here in 1780. The Wesleyans and Primitive Methodists have chapels. There is a National school, supported by E. Algernon Blackett, Esq."

[Description(s) from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland (1868)
Transcribed by Colin Hinson ©2003]