WHIXLEY, a parish-town, in the upper-division of Claro; 6 miles SE. of Boroughbridge, 7½ from Wetherby, 8 from Knaresborough, 11 from York. Pop. 467. The Church (see Churches for photograph) is a perpetual curacy, in the deanry of Boroughbridge, diocese of Chester, value, £7. 17s. 1d. p.r. !£41. Patron, the Heirs of the Tancreds.
This was formerly a seat of the ancient family of Tancred, the last of whom, Christopher Tancred, Esq. died in August, 1754, and by his will, left his house and estate here, for the maintenance of 12 decayed Gentlemen, four in each of the three learned professions; who must be 50 years of age or upwards, and unmarried, each of whom received, in 1814, about £50. per ann. and 1s. 6d. per day for providing victuals, &c. besides the use of two large gardens; a separate apartment is assigned to each, but, if in health, are required to dine together in the dining room every day. The Hall is 27 feet square. The Chapel is 27 feet by 21, in it a pulpit and reading desk; the former of which appears as if it had never been used; having no entrance. In a vault underneath this Chapel, it is said, the noble founder lays. £20. per ann. is allowed to a Clergyman for officiating here at stated times. The inmates of this Hospital are not allowed to be absent a night without leave, and the longest time of absence allowed, is five days. In the Staircase is a Pedigree of the Tancreds, commencing with Richard Tancred, Esq. who married Adeliza, daughter of Jordan de Bussey, and ending with the founder of this Hospital. At the end is an account of the several places where the family had estates. Annual value in 1786, was about £1300. The trust of this Hospital is vested in seven Governors, viz. The Governors of Greenwich and Chelsea Hospitals; the Master of the Charter House; the President of the College of Physicians; the Treasurer of Lincoln's Inn, London; the Masters of Caius College; and Christ's College, Cambridge.
The Church formerly belonged to the Priory of Knaresborough. Mr. Drake supposes that it was built with stones, brought from the ruins of Aldburgh; as the marks of fire are very apparent in some parts of the building: it is, nevertheless, very probable, that it was burnt, with many other Churches in this neighbourhood, by the Scots, in the year 1319. The Park wall, and most of the houses, in this village, are built with pebbles, said to have been taken from the remains of the Roman road.
[Description(s) edited from various 19th century sources by Colin Hinson © 2013]