1891 Census Names Index
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Clackclose hundred
Downham Union
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Norfolk - Welney

Francis White's History, Gazetteer and Directory of Norfolk 1854, pp. 644-5

[Complete entry. Transcription Copyright © the late A.J. Carter, February, 2001]

WELNEY is a village and considerable parish, 10 miles S.W. of Downham, lying in the cultivated fens of the Great Bedford Level, partly in Norfolk, and Cambridgeshire, and in R. G. Townley's manor of Beaupre Hall, and in the Bishop of Ely's manor of the Isle of Ely. The parish contains 270 houses, 1,206 souls, and 5,500 acres of land, chiefly the property of R. G. Townley, Esq., P. Huddleston, Esq., and Messrs. W. Little, Jph. Clemenson, and Robt. Beart. The fen land is frequently inundated several feet deep during the winter season. Of the above, 1,900 acres and 559 inhabitants are in Cambridgeshire, and form a separate township. The small river which here divides the counties, is navigable to Wisbech canal ; and a little above the village is crossed by those broad drains, called the Old and New Bedford rivers : the latter is crossed by a handsome suspension bridge of great height, and 63 yards, 2 feet long, built by the Rev. W. G. Townley, in 1826. The CHURCH is a neat structure, erected in 1848, at the cost of £5,000 ; the pulpit is of stone, neatly carved, and a beautiful stained glass window ornaments the chancel. The Rev. A. W. Roper, B.A. is curate. The living is consolidated with Upwell. In 1661 Wm. Marshall, Esq. bequeathed nine pieces of land, comprising 466a. 36p., and directed one-third of the yearly proceeds to be applied in repairing the Church and the bridge leading to it ; one-third for relieving poor widows, and apprenticing poor children ; and the other third for repairing the highways of Welney. This estate is let annually in 18 lots to the highest bidder, and the rents now amount to between £700 and £800. The income being more than necessary for the objects named by the donor, a new scheme was approved by the Court of Chancery in 1819, and one-third of the clear income is now applied in relieving poor widows, and apprenticing and clothing poor children ; two-thirds in repairing the Church, bridge, and highways, and in supporting a Free School. The trustees erected a good school and residence for the teacher in 1848 : about 100 boys and 100 girls attend. In the same year six almshouses were built for six poor widows, each of whom receive 3s. a week

Transcription Copyright © the late A.J. Carter, February 2001; links updated May 2010.

1891 Census Names Index
Marriages Index (1725-1812) [Alan Gresley]
Clackclose hundred
Downham Union
Kelly's 1883
Welney Archeology [Norfolk Heritage Explorer]
Local web-site [Welney Millenium Arts Project]
More on Welney [GENUKI-NFK]
More Parish information [Geoff Lowe & Andrew Rivett]
Return to villages index
Paddy's home page