Northallerton, Yorkshire, England. Geographical and Historical information from 1835.


Geographical and Historical information from the year 1835.

"NORTHALLERTON, a parish in the wapentake of ALLERTONSHIRE, North riding of the county of YORK, comprising the borough and market-town of North Allerton, the chapelries of Brompton, Deighton, and High Worsall, and the township of Romanby, and containing 4431 inhabitants, of which number, 2626 are in the town of North Allerton, 32 miles N.N.W. from York, and 224 N.N.W. from London. This place, supposed to have been a Roman station, and subsequently a Saxon borough, is in Domesday-book called Alvestune and Alreton, the prefix having been applied to distinguish it from Allerton-Mauleverer. It was greatly injured, if not destroyed, by Beornredus, or Earnredus, who, in 769, having invaded the kingdom of Northumberland, with a view to usurp the throne, burnt the town of Catterick, about eight miles distant. William Rufus gave the town, with the lands adjacent, to the see of Durham, and, under the patronage of the bishops, it grew into importance, and became an episcopal residence. At Cowton Moor, about three miles from the town, and within the parish, the celebrated battle of the Standard was fought, in 1138, between the English and the Scots, in which the latter were defeated, with the loss of eleven thousand men: the spot on which the standard was erected is still called Standard Hill, and the holes into which the dead were thrown, the Scots' Pits. About 1174, Henry II. ordered the demolition of the episcopal palace, supposed to have been built by Geoffrey, Bishop of Durham, and which had been strongly fortified by Bishop Pudsey; traces of the foundation are still visible on the western side of the town. In 1318, the Scots plundered and burnt the town. During the civil war, Charles I., in one of his journies to Scotland, lodged here in an old mansion, called the Porch-house; and in the rebellion of 1745, the English army, under the Duke of Cumberland, encamped on the Castle hills. The town is pleasantly situated in a valley, and consists chiefly of one spacious street, half a mile in length, partially paved, and containing some good houses. It has long given name to a district called Allertonshire, now constituting the wapentake. The principal branches of manufacture are those of linen and leather: the market is on Wednesday, and fairs are held on February 14th, September 5th and 6th, October 3rd and 4th, and the second Wednesday in the latter month. The borough first exercised the elective franchise in the 26th of Edward I., but made no subsequent return till 1640, since which time it has regularly sent two members to parliament: the right of election is vested in the proprietors of ancient burgage houses, about two hundred in number. The bailiff, who is appointed by letters patent from the Bishop of Durham, is the returning officer. The general quarter sessions for the North riding are held here, in the weeks after Christmas and Easter, and on the llth of July and the 18th of October; and there is a weekly meeting of the county magistrates. The sessions-house is an elegant building, erected about 1790, annexed to which is a house of correction, on the plan of Mr. Howard, containing thirty cells. Westward from the sessions-house is the registrar's office for the North riding, where the Bishop of Durham holds his courts. The living is a vicarage, in the peculiar jurisdiction and patronage of the Dean and Chapter of Durham, rated in the king's books at £17. The church, dedicated to All Saints, is supposed to have been built soon after the destruction of the town by the Scots, in 1318: it is a spacious cruciform structure, in the decorated style of English architecture, with a square tower rising from the centre, and adorned with pinnacles at the angles. There are places of worship for Independents and Wesleyan Methodists. The free grammar (now the parochial) school is of royal foundation, but the date thereof is uncertain: it has a small endowment, and an interest in five scholarships, founded by Bishop Cosins, at Peter House, Cambridge, in failure of applicants from the school at Durham; it has also a contingent interest in twelve exhibitions to Lincoln College, Oxford, founded by Lord Crewe: the school-house was rebuilt in 1777. Dr. William Palliser, Archbishop of Cashel; Dr. George Hickes, Dean of Worcester, and author of a Dictionary of the Northern Languages; Dr. Thomas Burnet, master of the Charter-house, London; Mr. Rymer, editor of the Foedera; Dr. Radcliffe; and the Rev. John Kettlewell, were educated here. A National school for boys and girls, and a Sunday school, established in 1787) are supported by subscription. An hospital, or Maison de Dieu, was founded in 1476, by Richard de Moore, a draper in this town, for thirteen poor people; it has been rebuilt at the expense of the inhabitants, but the number of inmates is reduced to six. The Rev. John Kettlewell, of St. Andrew's, Holborn, London, bequeathed, in 1694, an estate in the township of Brompton, called Low Moor Farm, the proceeds of which are divided among the poor of North Allerton and Brompton. There are some remains of a monastery of Carmelites, founded by Thomas Hatfield, Bishop of Durham; and the site of St. James' hospital, about a mile from the town, is still visible. There are also vestiges of a military road leading from Aldby, the Derticittio of the Romans, through this town to Catterick. North Allerton, in the reign of Anne, gave the title of viscount to the Elector of Hanover, afterwards George I. Edmund Guest, Bishop of Salisbury, almoner to Queen Elizabeth, was born in this town."

"BROMPTON, a chapelry in the parish of NORTHALLERTON, wapentake of ALLERTONSHIRE, North riding of the county of YORK, half a mile N.N.E. from North Allerton, containing 1223 inhabitants. There are places of worship for Primitive -and Wesleyan Methodists. Here is an extensive linen-manufactory; and in the chapelry is Standard Hill, where the memorable battle of the Standard was fought, being thus named from a large banner having been placed on a lofty pole, with a silver crucifix on the, summit, which was fixed on a wagon and carried with the troops."

"DEIGHTON, a chapelry in the parish of NORTHALLERTON, wapentake of ALLERTONSHIRE, North riding of the county of YORK, 6 miles N.E. from North Allerton, containing 134 inhabitants."

"HIGH WORSALL, a chapelry in the parish of NORTHALLERTON, wapentake of ALLERTONSHIRE, North riding of the county of YORK, 4 miles S.S.W. from Yarm, containing 154 inhabitants. The living is a perpetual curacy, in the jurisdiction of the peculiar court of the Dean and Chapter of Durham for Allerton and Allertonshire, endowed with £200 private benefaction, £800 royal bounty, and £200 parliamentary grant, and in the patronage of the Vicar of North Allerton."

"ROMANBY, a township in the parish of NORTHALLERTON, wapentake of ALLERTONSHIRE, North riding of the county of YORK, half of a mile S.W. from North Allerton, containing 294 inhabitants. It derived its name from the Roman road passing by it."

[Transcribed by Mel Lockie © from
Lewis's Topographical Dictionary of England 1835]