PENTNEY is a village and parish, 6½ miles north-west-by-north from Swaffham, 8½ south-east-by-east from Lynn. The Narborough station (Lynn and Norwich line) stands in the parish, which is very scattered. Pentney is situated on the navigable river Nar, in the Western division of the county, hundred and union of Freebridge Lynn, county court district of Lynn, rural deanery of Lynn, and archdeaconry and diocese of Norwich. The church of St. Mary Magdalen is an ancient structure, mostly of flint, with later additions of stone in various styles, enlarged from a small Norman chapel with an apse; it now has chancel, nave, square tower, containing 1 bell and south porch, with sedilia, piscina and aumbry: it was dependent on the Abbey of Pentney. The register dates from the year 1730. The living is a vicarage, yearly value £60, with residence, in the gift of the Rev. Edward F. E. Hankinson M.A. and held since 1875 by the Rev. John Samuel Broad M.A. of St. Edmund Hall, Oxford, who is also vicar of West Bilney. The Wesleyans have a handsome chapel here, and the General Baptists have a small chapel. The Town estate, of 50 acres (including the Fuel Allotment, adjoining the station), and other charities, about £75 yearly, are under the management of the vicar and churchwardens and two trustees appointed by the Charity Commissioners. About 2 miles west of the church was a priory of canons, of the order of St. Augustine, the fine gateway of which is still standing: between it and the church is the shaft of an elegant wayside cross. The Ketlam brook rises in Walton wood, runs through Pentney, and falls into the Nar. Captain Thackeray is lord of the manor of Ashwood, and owner of about one-fourth of the land; there are no other large properties, but the estates of Anthony Hamond esq. and Mr. Household run into this parish: many of the smaller properties are copyhold, fine certain: nearly all the land is tithe free. The soil is chiefly sand and gravel, but there is some heavy land; the four-course system of farming prevails; the drainage and water supply are good. Area, 2,293 acres; rateable value, £2,830; the population in 1881 was 534.
POST OFFICE. Thomas Turner Waller, receiver. Letters arrive from Swaffham at 8.30 a.m.; dispatched at 4.30 p.m. no delivery on sundays. The nearest money order & telegraph office is at Narborough
The National school for the two parishes is in West Bilney, about midway between the churches; it is occasionally used for readings & musical entertainments; Martin Luther, Martin, master; Miss Elizabeth Smith, mistress
Railway Station (Narborough), James Chappel Smith, station master
© Transcribed by E.C.Apling, February 1999; links last updated April 2010.
1891 Census Name Index
White's 1845 and 1883 [both GENUKI-NFK]
Pentney smockmill; and watermill [both Jonathan Neville]
Pentney Mill Inquest on Thomas Valentine [Jonathan Neville]
Pentney village page [Rita Sheridan]
Pentney campaign pages
Pentney Archeology [Norfolk Heritage Explorer]
More on Pentney [GENUKI-NFK]
Parish Register information, etc [Geoff Lowe & Andrew Rivett]
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