Norfolk: Frenze


William White's History, Gazetteer, and Directory of Norfolk 1883

[Transcription copyright © Pat Newby]

FRENZE, 1 mile E. of Diss, is ecclesiastically a separate parish, but is united with Scole and Thorpe Parva for the maintenance of the poor. It is in Depwade union, Diss county court district, Ipswich bankruptcy district, Diss petty sessional division and hundred, Diss polling district of South Norfolk, Redenhall rural deanery, and Norfolk archdeaconry.

It had 59 inhabitants in 1881, living on 389 acres, and its rateable value is included with Scole. The parish is mostly the property and manor of William Betts, Esq.

The CHURCH (St. Andrew) is a small antique fabric, comprising only a nave with wooden turret, the chancel having been taken down about sixty years ago. It was long the burial place, and still retains many interesting memorials, of the knightly family of Blenerhaysett, so named from Blenerseta, in Cumberland, where the elder branch long resided.

To the secluded situation, and unpretending simplicity of the church at Frenze, Blomefield ascribed the safety of those brasses which it contained, while more stately edifices in the neighbourhood had been unsparingly stripped. The publicity given to its treasures by the valuable work of Cotman, was the signal for commencing the work of spoliation, and the fine effigy of Sir Thomas Blenerhaysett (represented as clad in armorial tabard), and some others, have since disappeared.

There still remain several fine brasses worthy of note, although now nearly obliterated by age. Near the south door is the effigy of Jane Blenerhaysett, 1522, with the pedimental head-dress of the period, furred cuffs, and a rich girdle, from which hang a chain and pendant. On the north side of the nave, near the font, is a small brass figure of Thomas Bobson, in a shroud, with the hands raised in prayer. Towards the centre of the church is a large stone, with a brass, in good preservation, of Johanna Braham, 1519, clad in a long mantle with a veil and barbe, in a religious dress. In front of the Communion Table is the effigy of Sir John Blenerhaysett, 1510, having a skirt of chain-mail, under plate-armour, with taces and tuilles. The hands are raised in prayer; and the sword is suspended by a baldric, and hangs down straight in front of the figure. In the north-eastern corner of the church is a brass of Sir Ralph Blenerhaysett, 1475. He is represented in plate armour, the right arm covered by a succession of plates to give greater freedom to its movements: on the right side hangs a dagger, on the left a sword suspended by a baldric, and at the feet a lion couchant. There are also some brass plates of the Blenerhaysetts on the east wall.

Just below these, and partly under the Communion Table, is a large stone from which a small figure of George Duke, Esq., 1551, has been removed; but the figure of his wife, Anne Duke, still remains. She is represented with the pedimental head-dress; a long-waisted dress with tight sleeves terminating in cuffs which cover the hands; and a rich girdle supporting an aulmoniere and a rosary. Here are several other tablets and inscriptions, and near the centre of the floor is an old altar-tomb, marked with five crosses.

William Betts, Esq., Court House, Diss, is patron of the rectory, valued in the King's Book at £2 13s., and now in the incumbency of the Rev. John Rule Tucker, M.A., who resides at Scole. The tithes were commuted in 1840 for £106 per annum, and glebe, cottage, and 3 acres of glebe, and 4A. 3R. 25P. of Queen Anne's Bounty land situated in Denton parish. It is united with Scole for school purposes by voluntary rate.

POST from Scole, which is the nearest Money Order and Telegraph Office.

         Lines    Mrs Emily     Frenze hall
         Royle    John Bale     farmer, Frenze house
         Reeve    Mrs.          sexton; h Diss

In the printed directory, this entry for Frenze is with that for Scole.

See also the Frenze parish page.

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Copyright © Pat Newby
May 2003