SPORLE, WITH PALGRAVE, the former a straggling village, and the latter a hamlet, are distant 1½ mile from each other, and 2½ miles N.E. by N. of Swaffham. They form one parish, and embrace 847 inhabitants, 176 houses, and 4,153 acres of land, a great part of which, with the manor, belongs to St. Catherines's Hospital, London. In the time of Edward I. here was a priory, founded as a cell to the monastery of St. Florence, in Anjou, but it was dissolved in 1420, and afterwards granted to Eton College, with which are vested the appropriation of the tithes and the advowson of the vicarage, valued in the King's book at £10 3s. 6d., and in 1831 at £181, with the rectory of Palgrave annexed to it. The CHURCH, dedicated to the Virgin Mary, is a spacious edifice, with a tower and two bells, and has a fine gothic font, with a richly ornamented cover. There was anciently a church at Palgrave. The patronage of Sporle is vested in Eton College, and the Rev. T. Jones is the incumbent. Sir Matthew Holworthy left £600 to purchase lands, the rents to be paid to the vicar for preaching a sermon here every Sunday afternoon, except the winter quarter. This land is now let for £100. The same donor also left 10a. 2r. 22p. for schooling poor children, and it is now let for £15 10s. The Fuel Allotment, awarded in 1806, is 98a. 3r. 17p., let for £75 a year, with a house, built out of the rents, at the cost of £400, in 1818. Here is a Baptist and Primitive Methodist chapel, and a National School, built in 1841. The Lynn and Dereham Railway intersects the parish, passing the site where Sporle Hall formerly stood, some traces of the moat of which may still be seen. Post Office at Ann Bryant's; letters arrive at 6 a.m., and are despatched at 7 p.m.
Bell Jno. par. clk
Bryant Ann, day school
Dawson Jno. farm bailiff
Fox Thos. beerseller Hall Abel, gardener
Hall Jno. farm steward
Jones Rev. T. vicar
Read Eliza, National school
Walker Thos. beerseller Whisker J. vict. Hare and Hound
Corn Millers. Trundle G. (and baker)
Trundle W. (and baker)
Farmers. marked * are owners Bowles J. Little Palgrave *Farrer Edmd.
*Matthews Thos. Palgrave Hall Moore Robt.
Wells Ths. Great Palgrave farm
Shoemakers. Couzens Jas.
Shopkeepers. Alcock Sam.