Norfolk: Langley


White's History, Gazetteer, and Directory of Norfolk 1845

[Transcription copyright © Mike Bristow]

LANGLEY is a parish of dispersed dwellings, extending from the river Yare, southward, to within a mile of Loddon, and about 10 miles S.E. of Norwich. It has 323 inhabitants, and 2,700A. of land, of which 1,000A. are in low marshes.

The CHURCH (St. Michael,) is a small but interesting building, with a square tower. It was thoroughly repaired by the Beauchamp family, about 1803, and its windows filled with ancient and modern stained glass, at the cost of the Dowager Lady Beauchamp.

The curacy, certified at £20, and valued in 1831 at £45, was augmented, from 1772 to 1824, with £600 of Q.A.B. It is in the incumbency of the Rev. Thos. Wm. Henry Beauchamp, of Chedgrave, and patronage of Sir Wm. Beauchamp Proctor, Bart., the impropriator, owner of the soil, and lord of the manor, who resides at Langley Hall, a large and elegant mansion, in a beautiful park of 800A., chiefly erected about the year 1740, by Mr. Recorder Berney, of Norwich, and finished by George Proctor, Esq. It was afterwards enlarged by Sir W. B. Proctor, who was created a baronet in 1744. Additions were made to its wings some years ago. The centre is in five divisions, and has a handsome Doric portico, and the wings are connected with it by a semicircular sweep, and at each end of them are statues from the antique, placed in niches. The apartments contain a large collection of paintings, statues, busts, &c.

The first baronet Sir Wm. Beauchamp, was a son of the heiress of the Proctor family, and added their name and arms to his own. Near the park is a stone cross, ornamented with four statues in niches, and at a short distance are the ruins of Langley Abbey, founded in 1198, by Roger Fitz-Roger, for an abbot and 16 canons of the Praemonstratensian order. The ample endowment of the founder was confirmed by King John, who granted the parish a market and fair, with sac, soc, and other privileges. The abbey received continual additions from the prosperity of the founder, who took the name of De Clavering. It had many other benefactors, and its revenues were valued at £128 19s. 9d. per annum, at the dissolution, and were granted, with the site of the abbey, to John Berney, Esq.

The abbey farm house was burnt down in 1800, and afterwards rebuilt. About a mile from the church is Langley Staith, with a small navigable stream, crossing the marshes to the Yare. At the enclosure, 40A. were allotted to the poor for fuel. The Church Land is 2A. 1R. 18P.; and here is a parish gravel pit of one acre.


 Proctor   Rear Admiral
         Sir Wm.B., Bart.  Hall
 Proctor   T.W.B.B., Esq.  Hall
 Comby     Chas.           blacksmith
 Dains     Isaac           wheelwright
 Hardyman  Wm.             coal mert.,Staith
 Hall      John            vict., Wherry
 Harvey    Wm.             shoemaker
 Hubbard   Esther          grocer


 Barton    Thomas
 Cossey    John
 Hargrave  Thomas
 Read      John
 Spence    Peter
 Whaites   Edward

See also the Langley parish page.

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Copyright © Mike Bristow.
July 1999