COCKLEY-CLEY is a scattered village and parish, 4 miles S.S.W. of Swaffham, which comprises 263 inhabitants, 46 houses, and 4,160a. of land, of which 600a. are sandy heath. T. R. Buckworth, Esq., is the principal landowner and lord of the manor, and resides at the Hall, a handsome residence, with pleasant grounds. The Church, dedicated to All Saints, is an ancient edifice, with a round tower; and near it formerly stood a small chapel, dedicated to St. Mary, which was for many years occupied as the rectory house, but what remains of it is now a cottage. There was also another Church, at the east end of the village, dedicated to St. Peter, which is said to have been burnt down in the reign of Elizabeth. The rectory of All Saints, and the vicarage of St. Peter, valued in the King's book at £8 17s. 1d., and in 1831 at £170, are consolidated, in the gift of T. R. Buckworth, Esq., and enjoyed by the Rev. S.C. Campbell, M.A., for whom a neat rectory house was built in 1853. Sir Cloudesley Shovel, the celebrated admiral and commander in chief of Queen Anne's fleet, is said to have been the son of a poor man of this parish, and the run-away apprentice of a poor shoemaker. He was lost on the coast of Scilly, in 1705, together with several distinguished officers and 900 men. The Rev. Thos. Yorker, in 1621, left 10a. of land in Oxborough, and directed the rents to be applied, for five years, to the poor of Cockley-Cley, and every sixth year to the poor of Oxborough. This land is now let for £18 a year, and under direction of the Court of Chancery, is divided each year in the above proportions. This parish has 10a. of land in Swaffham, given by an unknown donor, and let for £30 a year, of which one sixth belongs to the church, and five sixths to the poor, who have also £3 a year out of New Close, left by John Bagge. T. R. Buckworth, Esq., supports a school which has recently been built at his expense. DIRECTORYTheophilus Russell Buckworth, Esq., Hall; John Abel, gamekeepr.; Rev. Straton Chas. Campbell, M.A., Rectory; Isaac Denny, vict. Cock; Jno. Fuller, parish clk; Jno. License, farm steward; Jane Matthews, blacksmith; Eliza Nickels, schoolmistress; and Daniel Sewell, farmer.
Transcription Copyright © the late A.J. Carter, April 2000; links updated January 2010.
1891 Census Names Index
South Greenhoe hundred
White's 1845, 1864 and 1883 [GENUKI-NFK]
Saint Mary's Chapel
Cockley Cley early postmill [Jonathan Neville]
Cockley Cley later postmill [Jonathan Neville]
Cockley Cley watermill [Jonathan Neville]
More on Cockley Cley [GENUKI-NFK]
Return to villages index
Paddy's home page