GREAT DRIFFIELD: Geographical and Historical information from the year 1834.


"GREAT DRIFFIELD, is a market-town and township in the parish of its name, which is partly within the liberty of St. Peter, of York, and partly in the Bainton Beacon division of Harthill wapentake, East Riding; 193 miles from London, 96 n. e. from Manchester, 30 e. by n. from York, 13 n. from Beverley, and 12 s. e. from Bridlington; situated in a fine sporting country, and near the source of the river Hull (navigable a short distance from the town) and upon which is shipped large quantities of corn; for the growth of which the soil about here is particularly adapted. A court for the recovery of small debts is held in the town; and the chief municipal officer is a constable, appointed annually. Great Driffield is one of the stations named in the new Boundary Act, for taking votes at the election of members to represent the East Riding of the county. The buildings for divine worship are, the parish church, dedicated to All Saints, and a chapel each, for baptists, independents, and Wesleyan and primitive methodists. The Rev. George Allen is incumbent of All Saints; and the living is a curacy, in the gift of the precentor of York. A dispensary is supported by voluntary contributions; and a national school, established in 1816, affords instruction to about one hundred children. The country around Driffield is agricultural, flat in its immediate vicinity, but undulating at a little distance. The market day is on Thursday; in addition to which, a fortnight cattle market, which was commenced at Easter in 1833, is well attended. The population of the whole parish, in 1821, amounted to 2,471, and in 1831, to 2,854, of which last number 2,660 were returned for the township."

"LITTLE DRIFFIELD, is a chapelry, in the parish of Great Driffield, about 1 mile w. from that town. The church here, dedicated to St. Peter, was taken down and rebuilt in 1807: the ancient structure was celebrated as the burial place of Alfred the Great, King of Northumberland, to whose memory an inscription is still preserved against the south wall of the chancel. Other authorities, however, dispute this evidence, and Winchester lays claim to the honour of possessing the remains of this celebrated monarch. Fairs are, Easter Monday, Whit-Monday, September 9th, and August 26th, for horses, cattle, and sheep. The chapelry contained, at the last census, 92 inhabitants.
Please see Great Driffield parish for the 1834 trades directory for this Chapelry."

[Transcribed by Steve Garton ©2000 from
Pigot's directory (Yorkshire section) 1834]