ELLERTON: Geographical and Historical information from the year 1892.


Wapentake of Harthill (Holme Beacon Division) - County Council Electoral Division of Bubwith - Petty Sessional Division of Holme Beacon - Poor Law Union and County Court District of Howden - Rural Deanery of Weighton - Archdeaconry of the East Riding - Diocese of York.

Ellerton Priory, or simply Ellerton, is a parish and township lying on the east bank of the river Derwent. It extends over an area of 2,552 acres, and had in 1891 a population of 263 - a decrease of 20 since the previous census. There are 2,472 acres under assessment, of which the rateable value is £2,684. The soil is of a mixed nature, part sand and part clay, and the chief crops are wheat, potatoes, turnips, and clover. The Ings are laid down in meadow. The land belongs to several proprietors, of whom the most extensive are James Lund, Esq., J.P., D.L., of Malsis Hall, Cross Hills, Keighley; J. J. Dunnington-Jefferson, Esq., Thicket Priory; Captain George Henry Bridges, Northcote House, Clifton Park; George Wake, Ellerton; Francis Stephenson, Esq., Pontefract; Robert Watson and John Watson, Ellerton; and Alfred Jackson, of Acomb, York.

The first mention of this place occurs in Domesday Book, wherein it is spelt Alreton and Elreton, and was probably so named from the abundance of eller or alder trees in the neighbourhood. A priory was founded here by William Fitz Peter, in the early part of the 13th century, for religious of the Order of St. Gilbert, of Sempringham, and dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary and St. Lawrence. The convent was not only a home for a certain number of monks, but also for 13 poor people, whom the canons were obliged to maintain. At the dissolution there were a prior and nine religious in the house, and their revenues amounted to £62 8s. 10d. The monastery was surrendered in 1537, the monks turned adrift, and the poor left to starve by the wayside - robbed of the inheritance left them by the piety of their ancestors. The site of the priory was granted to Sir John Aske, in 1542, on very indulgent terms. The last prior was John Golding, who had a pension of £13 6s. 8d. allowed him, as a solatium for the loss of his dignity. There are no remains of the conventual buildings, and the parish church, which had been the nave of the priory church, was rebuilt about 50 years ago. It is dedicated to St. Mary, and consists of chancel, nave, porch, and bell turret, containing two bells. The style is Norman. In the windows are fragments of ancient stained glass, representing shields of arms, but it is impossible now to assign the arms to their respective bearers. There are two old oak stalls in the chancel, which are supposed to have belonged to the old priory. The oldest register extant bears the date 1678; part of them appears to have been destroyed. In the register of burials, the entries from 1688 to 1698 usually certify that the deceased were buried in nothing but woollen. The living is a vicarage, gross value £190, including 90 acres of glebe, in the gift of J. J. Dunnington-Jefferson, Esq., and held by the Rev. George Robinson, B.A.

The village is pleasantly situated about nine miles west of Howden, and three miles north of Bubwith station, on the Selby and Market Weighton branch of the North-Eastern railway. There are chapels belonging to the Wesleyans and Primitive Methodists, and a National school, built in 1874. There are almhouses for three poor women, founded and endowed by Sir Hugh Bethell, in 1610, and further endowed at the enclosure with an allotment of nine acres. Each inmate receives 6s. per week. The poor's land consists of 22 acres, let for £8 per annum, one half of which is applied in the reduction of school fees and awarding prizes, and the other is given to the poor; and 11 acres let for £20 8s. yearly. William Bethell Esq., in 1696, left about 15 acres, the rent of which is distributed in bread every Sunday in the church. The poor have also two rentcharges amounting to £16 a year.

[Description(s) from Bulmer's History and Directory of East Yorkshire (1892)]


  • Transcript of the entry for the Post Office, professions and trades in Bulmer's Directory of 1892.

Scan, OCR and html by Colin Hinson. Checking and correction by Peter Nelson.