CHURCH STOKE: Geographical and Historical information from the year 1831.

"CHURCH STOKE, a parish partly in the lower division of the hundred of CAWRSE, and partly in that of the hundred of MONTGOMERY, county of MONTGOMERY, NORTH WALES, and comprising the township of Brompton with Riston (which supports its poor separately from the rest of the parish), in the hundred of CHIRBURY, county of SALOP, ENGLAND, 4 miles (E. S. E.) from Montgomery, on the road from Welshpool, through Chirbury, to Bishop's Castle, and containing 1453 inhabitants. The village is situated near the confluence of the rivers Camlet and Ceibutrach, the former of which, after passing through the romantic dingle of Marrington, falls into the Severn near Forden. From the flatness of the ground above it, and the contracted channel of the Camlet, the adjacent meadows are subject to inundation, and during the winter have been frequently entirely covered with water. From some of the high grounds are fine views, extending over the vales of Churchstoke and Montgomery, with the surrounding hills, and comprehending a rich variety of pleasingly diversified scenery. Considerable quantities of lead-ore have been found in the parish, and on the Churchstoke hills are evident traces of mines, which are supposed to have been worked by the Romans. The living is a perpetual curacy, in the archdeaconry of Salop, and diocese of Hereford, endowed with a rent-charge of £20 per annum and £600 private benefaction, £1000 royal bounty, and £600 parliamentary grant, and in the patronage of the Warden of Clun Hospital. The church, dedicated to St. Nicholas, and formerly dependent on the priory of Chirbury, is a plain neat edifice, with a square embattled tower surmounted by a spire: the body was taken down and rebuilt, at an expense of £2500, in 1815, previously to which the porch and other parts of the ancient structure exhibited indications of the damage it sustained from an attack during the parliamentary war, by the men of Montgomery castle, in order to seize a party of royalists, commanded by Sir John Watts, which had taken refuge in the church, and which, after an obstinate resistance, was obliged to surrender. A parochial and Sunday school, in which about eighty children are instructed, is supported partly by subscription, and partly by endowment arising from some small bequests. On the summit of a prominent rock, in the vale of Church-stoke, are the remains of Symond's Castle, an ancient fortification; and on Llanvawr hill, a craggy and precipitous eminence, are the remains of an ancient encampment, the origin of which has not been ascertained. On Churchstoke hill are vestiges of a Roman camp, and on the declivity called Todleth are the remains of old walls, and a piece of water called the Church pool, probably belonging to some religious house, near the site of which, according to an absurd popular tradition, the church was originally to have been erected. There are remains of British encampments on the Aldres farm, and at Galet y din, or Calton, in this parish, in which also is included a part of Corndon hill. Near Offa's Dyke, which passes through the parish, are several tumuli, one of which was opened within the last few years: the bottom, which was sunk about a foot below the level of the surrounding land, was paved, and the sides were formed with flag-stones, on one of which was an inscription, very much obliterated; within was only some black dust, among which was discovered a small coin, with a legend quite unintelligible. At a place on Offa's Dyke, called the Three Jacks, a coin of Agricola was found, about twelve years since. Churchstoke is one of those parishes incorporated for the support of their poor in the house of industry at Forden: the average annual expenditure amounts to £481. 14., exclusively of Brompton with Riston, for which the average assessment is £82 annually."

" BROMPTON (or BROMPTON RALPH), a township in the hundred of BROMPTON, joint with Riston, in that part of the parish of CHURCH STOKE, which is in the hundred of CHIRBURY, county of SALOP, 6 miles (N.W. by W.) from Bishop's Castle, containing, with Riston, 197 inhabitants."

" RISTON, a township, joint with Brompton, in that part of the parish of CHURCH STOKE, which is in the hundred of CHIRBURY, county of SALOP, 7 miles (N. W.) from Bishop's Castle. The population is returned with Brompton."

[Transcribed information from A Topographical Dictionary of England - Samuel Lewis - 1831](unless otherwise stated)

[Description(s) transcribed by Mel Lockie ©2015]