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GREAT MALVERN - Extract from National Gazetteer, 1868

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The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland - 1868

"GREAT MALVERN, a parish and post town in the lower division of the hundred of Pershore, county Worcester, 5 miles N. of Upton-on- Severn, and 8 W. of Worcester. It is a station on the Worcester and Hereford line of railway, and the junction station of the Tewkesbury and Malvern branch line. It is a watering-place, situated on the eastern declivity of the Malvern hills, which here separate the counties of Worcester and Hereford. The parish contains the hamlets of Barnard's Green and Newland, besides the town of Malvern, which has recently become a place of considerable importance.

Here was anciently an hermitage, founded in the reign of Edward the Confessor, which was made a Benedictine cell to Westminster Abbey by Aldewine, the hermit, in 1083. Of the conventual buildings, the ancient Tudor gateway, Abbey barn, and church, are all that now remain.

The Malvern hills consist of about twenty distinct summits, the whole forming a circle extending 9 miles in length from N. to S., and 2 broad. The highest points are the Herefordshire Beacon Camp, which is 1,444 feet above sea level, and the Worcestershire Beacon, 1,300 feet, affording excellent pasturage for sheep. The views obtained from these hills are very extensive, including several counties, with the cathedrals of Worcester, Gloucester, and Hereford.

The modern town of Malvern is well built, and contains many terraces, with good shops, hotels, baths, two banks, and several boardinghouses; but the more ancient portion is irregular, consisting of houses scattered, on the declivity of the, mountain. The public library is a building of the Doric order. In the vicinity are flower gardens, which are open to subscribers, and where flower shows frequently take place. Malvern has numerous hydropathic establishments, which have added much to its increasing prosperity.

There are a chalybeate and a bituminous spring, the water of which is remarkable for its purity, and for its gently aperient and diuretic properties. The former is in the eastern part of the village, near the church; the latter, called Holy Well, is situated 2 miles to the S. of it. Every accommodation has been provided for drinking these waters, and for hot and gold bathing. The water of the Holy Well has been found on analysis to contain per gallon 1.6 grains of carbonate of lime, 5.33 carbonate of soda, 2.896 sulphate of soda, 1.553 muriate of soda, 0.625 carbonate or iron, and 1.687 of residuum. The water of St. Anne's Well contains per gallon, 3.55 carbonate of soda, 1.48 sulphate of soda, 0.955 muriate of soda, 0.352 carbonate of lime, 0.328 carbonate of iron, and 0.470 of residuum.

The living is a vicarage* [the asterisk denotes that there is a parsonage and glebe belonging to the living] in the diocese of Worcester, value £350. The parish church, dedicated to St. Mary, was formerly the church of the Benedictine Abbey. It is a cruciform structure with a lofty embattled tower rising from the centre. The interior of the church contains a remarkably beautiful E. window, carved seats, and several monuments, among which is one to the wife of R. Thompson, Esq., of Malvern Priory. The whole of this edifice has recently been restored at great expense.

There are also two district churches -

viz: Trinity Church, at North Malvern, and St. Mary's, at Barnard's Green, the livings of which are both perpetual cure. The parochial charities produce about £20 per annum. There are National, industrial, and endowed schools. There are two chapels of the Countess of Huntingdon's Connexion, and one for the Independents. Lady Emily Foley is lady of the manor.

"BARNARD'S GREEN, a village in the parish of Great Malvern, hundred of Lower Pershore, in the county of Worcester, near Great Malvern. Upton-on-Severn is its post town. The living is a perpetual curacy* [the asterisk denotes that there is a parsonage and glebe belonging to the living] in the diocese of Worcester, in the patronage of Lady Emily Foley, and is at present held by the Vicar of Great Malvern. The church is dedicated to St. Mary."
"WOODSFIELD, a hamlet in the chapelry of Newland and parish of Great Malvern, county Worcester, 2 miles N.E. of Malvern, and 5 S.E. of Worcester."

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