TADCASTER: Geographical and Historical information from the year 1835.
"TADCASTER, a parish in the East riding, of the county of YORK, comprising the market town of Tadcaster, and the township of Stutton with Hazlewood (the latter being extra-parochial), in the upper division of the wapentake of BARKSTONE-ASH, West riding, and the townships of Catterton and Oxton, in the ainsty of the city of YORK, East riding, of the county of YORK, and containing 2811 inhabitants, of which number, 2426 are in the town of Tadcaster, 10 miles S.W. from York, and 189 N.N.W. from London. This place was the Roman station Calcaria, so named from the nature of the soil,. which abounds in calx, or Limestone, and one of the outports, or gates, on the Consular way, to their chief military station, Eboracum, the city of York. Under the name Calca-cester, Bede relates that Heina, the first female who assumed the habit of a nun in this country, retired to it, where she built a residence. In all the great civil wars of England, it was regarded as a post of considerable importance, and the possession of it has been repeatedly contested. During the commotions, on the appointment of the Earl of Newcastle to the command of the royal army, in 1642, he advanced from York towards this town, with four thousand men and seven pieces of cannon, and commenced his attack on the enemy's works, which lasted without intermission from eleven in the morning to five in the afternoon; his ammunition being exhausted, the lord general desisted from the assault, in expectation of a fresh supply from York before the following morning} but during the night, Sir Thomas Fairfax, who was posted here with seven hundred men, drew them oif to Cawood and Selby, and left the royalists in possession. The town, which is a great thoroughfare, is situated on the river Wharf, over which is a very handsome stone bridge, considered the finest in the county, erected in the beginning of the last century; its centre marks the divisions of the jurisdictions of the West riding and the ainsty of the city of York. On the banks of the river, which is navigable up to the town, are several flour-mills. The streets are arranged on each side, and the houses are neat and modern. The walks on the banks of the river are highly interesting, and have of late been greatly improved. In the immediate neighbourhood are stone quarries, one of which, called Jack-daw-Cragg, (singularly interesting and romantic, and in the possession of the ancient family of Vavasour,) supplied stone for the erection of the magnificent cathedral at York, and is now furnishing maT terials for its repair, in consequence of the partial conflagration in 1829. The market is on Wednesday; and fairs are held on the last Wednesdays in the months of May and October, for cattle and sheep; and in November, for-hiring servants. The living is a discharged vicarage, in the archdeaconry and diocese of York, rated in the king's books at £8. 4. 9., endowed with £200 private benefaction, and £200 royal bounty, and in the patronage of the Earl of Egremont. The church, which is dedicated to St. Mary, is a handsome structure in the later style of English architecture, with a fine tower. There are places of worship for Independents, Inghamites, and Primitive andWesleyan Methodists, the last having a school-room attached, capable of containing three hundred children. The grammar school, and an hospital for four poor men, were founded and endowed with lands and the sum of £600, by Dr. Oglethorpe, Bishop of Carlisle, and confirmed by license in the 5th of Philip and Mary; the number of scholars is twenty, and the annual income is £145. Forty boys and girls are also instructed by four poor women, ahnshouse pensioners, on the foundation of Mrs. Henrietta Dawson, who, about thirty years ago, bequeathed £15 per annum to ten widows, and £10 per annum to ten spinsters, with an additional £5 per annum to each of the four women for teaching the,children. A Sunday school, in connexion with the established church, was built by subscription in 1788, on a plot of ground given by the late William Hill, Esq., whose daughter, the present Miss Hill, has ever since contributed materially towards its support, and has assigned to it a permanent endowment of £20 per annum. Several Roman coins have been found here at different times, and there are some vestiges of a trench, surrounding part of the town, which is supposed to have been thrown up at the time of the civil war in the reign of Charles I."
"CATTERTON, a township in the parish of TADCASTER, (that part which is in the ainsty of the city), and East riding of the county of YORK, 2 miles N.N.E. from Tadcaster, containing 63 inhabitants."
"OXTON, a township in the parish of TADCASTER, (that part which is in the ainsty of the city), and East riding of the county of YORK, 1 mile E. from Tadcaster, containing 66 inhabitants."
[Transcribed by Mel Lockie © from
Lewis's Topographical Dictionary of England 1835]