MAPPLETON: Geographical and Historical information from the year 1892.


Wapentake of Holderness (North Division - County Council Electoral Division and Poor Law Union of Skirlaugh - Petty Sessional Division of North Holderness - County Court District of Beverley - Rural Deanery of Hornsea - Archdeaconry of the East Riding - Diocese of York.

This parish, very generally though incorrectly spelt with two P's (The 1998 spelling is with 2 P's, and these pages are modified to agree with this), is situated on the coast hetween Hornsea and Aldbrough. It comprises the township of Mappleton and Rowlston, the hamlet of Great Cowden and a small part of the township of Great Hatfield, containing in all 3,454 acres, and 254 inhabitants. The soil varies from loam to strong clay; the subsoil is clay - red in some places, and blue in others; and the principal crops are wheat, oats, barley, beans, peas, turnips, and clover. This parish, in common with others on the coast of Holderness, is gradually diminishing in extent, from the incursions of the sea. The soft perishable material that forms the coast, yields to the force of the waves and falls into the sea. The rate of destruction has been accurately measured, and found to be about seven feet per annum. In 1786 the distance between the parish church and the sea, measured in a direct line, was 28 chains, 76 links; in 1836, 25 chains, 17 links; in 1858,21 chains, 62 links; and in 1871, 19 chains, 50 links. According to the observations of the Ordnance Survey, completed in 1889, the average rate of destruction on the coast of Holderness is five feet ten inches per annum.

The area of the township of Mappleton and Rowlston is 1,908 acres; the rateable value £1,760, and the population in 1891 was 179. The principal landowners are the representatives of the late Mrs. Florence Whyte, to whom belong the manorial rights of Mappleton; Col. Haworth-Booth, who is lord of the manor of Rowlston; and W. 0. Jarratt, Esq., Hilderthorpe Lodge.

In the reign of Edward the Confessor, the manor of Mappletone belonged to Earl Morcar. It was of considerable extent, including within its soke several places, and was rated at £56, but so great were the devastation and ravages committed by the Norman soldiers, that at the time of the survey, as we learn from Domesday Book, it had fallen in value to six pounds. Soon after the Conquest the manor was held by Peter le Brus; it afterwards belonged to the St. Quintins, from whom it passed by the marriage of an heiress to the Fiennes, afterwards Barons Dacre. In the early part of the 18th century it was in the possession of the Gee family, of Beverley, from whom it descended to Robert Moiser, Esq., and now belongs, as before stated, to the representatives of the late Mrs. Florence Whyte.

The village of Mappleton is situated two-and-a-half miles south-by-east from Hornsea Bridge station, three miles east from Sigglesthorne station, both on the Hull and Hornsea branch of the North-Eastern railway, and 13 miles east-by-north from Beverley. The church of All Saints' is an ancient edifice of cobblestone, with cut-stone dressings in the Early English and Decorated Gothic styles. It comprises chancel, nave, north aisle, south porch, vestry, and western tower, with spire, containing one large bell. The church underwent a thorough restoration in 1855-6, when the spire was added to the tower. The stone formed part of the cargo of a vessel that was wrecked near the place. The total cost of the restoration was about £1,500, which was raised by subscription. The lower part of the tower is supposed to be Norman, and there are indications of Norman work in some other parts of the building. The aisle is divided from the nave by three pointed arches, springing from octagonal columns. One portion of it was long the mortuary chapel of the Broughs, of Rowlstone, and contains a large and beautiful table monument of white marble to the memory of various members of that ancient family. In the south wall of the nave, close to the door, is a small semicircular arched recess, probably once the holy water basin. The font is octagonal in shape, and ancient. Each face is ornamented with a quatrefoil, within which is a shield of arms. Some of them are defaced, but two exhibit very plainly the arms of St. Quintin and Fitzhugh. The east window is a memorial to the three children of the Rev. Chr. Forge (a former vicar), to whom there is a tablet affixed to the wall of the chancel. There is a memorial window in the nave to Thomas and Jane Duke, of Hornsea, and Hannah, their daughter; and the west window also is filled with stained glass. A brass lectern was presented in 1890 by J. Jackson Wheeler, Esq., London. A new heating apparatus was added about four years ago, at a cost of £70. There are 220 sittings. The register dates from 1778. The living is a new vicarage, in the patronage of the Archdeacon of the East Riding, and held since 1870 by the Rev. Thomas Winter Kelly, M.A., of Trinity College, Dublin, who is also Brigade Acting Chaplain to the 1st East Riding of Yorkshire Artillery Volunteers. It is valued in the Liber Regis at £4 3s. 4d., and is now worth £210 net, including 11 acres of glebe, with residence. The tithe, amounting to £444, belongs to the Ecclesiastical Commissioners.

The Wesleyan Chapel was erected in 1828, and rebuilt in 1890 at a cost of £144. The church school, with master's house adjoining, built in 1873 at an expense of £700, has accommodation for 90 children, and an average attendance of 40.

CHARITIES. - Robert Brown, of Great Cowden, by will, dated 1790, left £100, and Wm. Ake, of Mappleton, left a similar sum in 1848; the interest is expended in the purchase of two shillings worth of bread, weekly, which is distributed amongst the poor attending divine service, and the remainder is given to the poor at Christmas. Mrs. Hannah Duke, of Hornsea, who died in 1882 left £100, the interest of which is to be given to the poor at Christmas, and another £100 towards the maintenance of the church.

ROLSTON, is a hamlet containing 796 acres, lying one mile north-west of Mappleton. It is united with Mappleton for the relief of the poor, but maintains its own roads. In Domesday Book it appears as Roolfestone, and in later documents the name is variously written Rolston, Rolleston, and Rowlston. At the time of the Norman Survey it belonged to the soke of Mappleton, but it has long been a distinct manor. The St. Quintins were in possession at an early period, and from them it passed with Mappleton, by marriage, to the Dacres of the South. Its next owners were the Maynes of Beverley, and an heiress of this family conveyed it in marriage to the Trusloves. In 1696, Mary Truslove married John Brough, of Hedon, and it remained with this family till the death of the widow of William Brough, Esq., Marshall of the High Court of Admiralty, when it descended to Theresa, wife of Benjamin Haworth, Esq., of Hull Bank House. Mr. Haworth died in 1868, and was succeeded by his eldest son, Benj. Blaydes Haworth-Booth, Esq., BA., J.P., D.L., Barrister, Inner Temple, who in 1869 assumed the additional surname and arms of Booth. He is a Captain of the Yorkshire Artillery, W.D., R.A., and manager of the West End, London, branch of the Mutual Life Insurance Co., the largest Insurance Co. in the world.

The Hall is an old building, and was formerly moated. There is preserved a cannon ball which is said to have been fired at the house by the notorious Paul Jones, the pirate. Marshal Brough was entrusted with the suppression of the piracy, and the freebooter, it is said, never sailed along this part of the coast without showing his contempt of the worthy marshal by firing a shot at his house. The Rowlston estate has descended by inheritance for at least 600 years.


GREAT COWDEN, in this parish and Little Cowden in Aldbrough parish form a joint township called Cowdens Ambo, but each maintains its own roads. The total area is 1,750 acres; the rateable value £1,140; and the population 112. The township is in the Petty Sessional division of Middle Holderness and in the County Court district of Hedon. The land belongs to many proprietors, of whom the principal are the trustees of Mr. Wm. Whiting, who are also lords of the manor; Mr. Robt. Holtby, Elmswell, near Driffield; Mr. J. R. Brown, Aldbrough and Mr. A. Brown, Sunk Island; Mr. Wm. Shaw Wright, North Ferriby; Mrs. England, Miss Fox, and Mrs. Bishop.

The manor was held in early times under the Archbishop of York; it afterwards belonged to the Gees, from whom it has passed to the present owners. The hamlet of Great Cowden is situated about one mile south-east of Mappleton. The population of the place has decreased since the Board of Trade prohibited the removal of gravel from the beach, many families previously obtaining their living by gathering cobbles for the repair of the roads. There is a small chapel here belonging to the Primitive Methodists, and a rocket life-saving apparatus station under the Board of Trade.

Little Cowden or Colden Parva was anciently a parochial chapelry, but the chapel which was dedicated to St. John the Evangelist, with part of the village, was swallowed up by the sea about the end of the 17th or beginning of the 18th century. The living was a rectory in the gift of the Crown, and is now united with Aldbrough. Mr. Poulson has given a list of the rectors from A.D. 1313. The last presentation was the Rev. Rd. Legard, M.A., in 1639. The whole hamlet is in two farms.

GREAT HATFIELD township, which is partly in this parish, is given under Sigglesthorne.

[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.