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Great Ashfield, Suffolk Villages & Towns - History, Genealogy & Trade Directories

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Great Ashfield, Blackbourn Hundred
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ASHFIELD, (GREAT)  in 1844 is a small scattered village, 8 miles N. W. of Stowmarket, and 5 miles E. S. E. of Ixworth, has in its parish 396 souls, and about 2,030 acres of land. Ashfield Lodge, a neat mansion with pleasant grounds, is the seat of Lord Thurlow, the lord of the manor, owner of most of the soil, impropriator, and patron of the Church, (All Saints) a small ancient fabric, with a tower and five bells. The benefice is a perpetual curacy, valued at 65, and now enjoyed by the Rev. John Steggall. But here is also an endowed lectureship, of which the Rev. Thomas B. Norgate is incumbent. In 1620, Nicholas Fyrmage gave his land in Hackford, and 300 to be laid out in land, "to a preaching minister of God's word, for a Sunday sermon in the forenoon, to be preached in the parish church of Ashfield Mayna" viz. to the preacher 8s. for every sermon; to 12 of the poorest householders in the parish 2s. each, every quarter in the year; 2s. to the sexton every quarter, for ringing the great bell to every sermon; and 2s. a year to find bell ropes. By an Inquisition taken of this charity, in the 21st of James 1st, it was found that the rectory and parsonage of Ashfield Magna had, time out of mind, been an impropriation, and that there was no certain maintenance for a preaching minister, the curate having only 20, raised by the voluntary gifts of the parishioners, and the impropriator. The Commissioners of this enquiry decreed that the property, left by Nicholas Fyrmage, should be conveyed to trustees, who should have the nomination and appointment of an able man to preach, as directed by the testator. The 300 was laid out in the purchase of about 40 acres of land, called Hoo-Wood, in Stow-upland and Stow-market, now let for 54 a year. The property at Hackford consists of a farmhouse, cottage, and 27a. 3r. 23p. of land, let for 44 a year. The income from these sources, (98 per ann.) after paying 8s. a year to the sexton, and 2s. for bell ropes, is divided into five parts, of which four are paid to the lecturer, and one part is distributed among about 13 poor householders. Until 1813, it was usual for the trustees to appoint the perpetual curate to the lectureship; but after that year, they appointed other clergymen. In 1827, the present incumbent curate, considering himself entitled to the lectureship, prohibited the Rev. T. B. Norgate from performing duty in the church, as lecturer, and application was made to the Court of Chancery, which confirmed the appointment of the trustees. In the 13th of Charles I., William Clarke left a yearly rent charge of 20s. out of 4a. called Wrong Haunt, for apprenticing poor children of Ashfield. The Nether lands, 1a. 3r. 16p., are let for 5 4s. a year, which is carried to the churchwarden's account. Two Cottages, adjoining the church-yard, are occupied rent free, by poor persons, and repaired by the parish.
Ashfield is remarkable for being the birth place of that distinguished lawyer, the late LORD THURLOW, and his brother, late Bishop of Durham. Their father, the Rev. Thomas Thurlow, was incumbent here, and married Miss Eliza Smith, the sole heiress of the Smiths, who had long held the manor, and were seated at the old mansion called Lee, now Lee farm. Edward, his eldest son, was born in 1735, and at the proper age was sent to Caius College, Cambridge, but did not obtain a degree. On leaving the University, he entered himself of the Inner Temple, was called to the bar and remained unemployed, and unknown, until his abilities were called into action in the Douglas cause ; soon after which, he attained such professional distinction, that he was appointed solicitor-general in 1770; attorney-general, in the following year; and lord chancellor in 1778. On the latter occasion, he was elevated to the peerage, by the title of Baron Thurlow of Ashfield. In 1786, he obtained the lucrative appointment of teller of the Exchequer; and in 1792 was created Baron Thurlow of ThurIow, with remainder failing his male issue, to his brothers, and their male issue. The most remarkable period of his life was the epoch of his majesty's illness, in 1788, and '89. His integrity then shone conspicuous; and in one of his speeches on the regency question, he said," When I forsake my king in the hour of his distress, may God forsake me." He retired into private life in 1793. His talents, even out of his profession, were so splendid, that Dr. Johnson said, "I would prepare myself for no man in England, but Lord Thurlow; when I am about to meet him, I should wish to know a day before." His lordship, who was never married, died at Brighton, in 1806. His next brother, Thomas Thurlow, who embraced the clerical profession, was elevated to the See of Rochester, in 1779, but was translated to Durham, in 1787, and died in 1791. Edward, his eldest son, succeeded, on his uncle's demise, to the title of Baron Thurlow of Thurhw, and died 1829, when he was succeeded by the Rt. Hon. Edward Thomas Hovell Thurlow, the present Lord Thurlow.
Lord Thurlow, Ashfield Lodge
Calver Edward, blacksmith
Elmer Thomas, corn miller
Jackaman William, victualler, Thurlow Arms
Norgate Rev. Thomas, B. lecturer
Peach James, bricklayer
Peach Sarah, schoolmistress
Plummer John & William, carpenters
Plummer Elizabeth, shopkeeper
Redit John, blacksmith
Redit Nathaniel, wheelwright

FARMERS.
Barrell Joseph
Bennett John
Boldero George (& brickmaker)
Booty William
Easlea John, Lee
Firman Robert
Hunt Richard
Larter William
Parker Robert, Reed Hall
Pattle Zachariah
Rice James
Wakeley Mrs. _
Waller William
SHOEMAKERS.
Bloomfield David, (& shopkeeper)
Faires William
Seaton Samuel


Great Ashfield in Kellys 1879 Directory.
Great Ashfield (near Ixworth) is a parish and scattered village 2 miles north from Elmswell station, 88 from London, and 10 from Bury St Edmunds, in the Western division of the county, Blackbourn Hundred.
The church of All Saints is a flint building, the registers date from 1698.
Post Office, Charles Fox
A school house was erected in 1875; Miss Bevan, mistress
Carrier to Bury - James Mathews

Blake Sir Henry Charles bart, JP, Ashfield Lodge
Bolton Misses, Ashfield villa
Currie Major Henry, Ashfield house
Steggall Rev John Heigham, MA [vicar]

Commercial
Barker Charles, farmer
Barrell Anthony, farmer, Randalls farm
Barrell Thos, farmer, School House Farm
Boughton Charles, wheelwright
Coleman George, bricklayer
Elliner Samuel, farmer
Elmer Henry, miller
Faiers William, Hovel Arms
Fox Charles, grocer & draper
Frewer Godfey, farmer
Hewes Thomas, farmer, Slough Farm
Hill George, shopkeeper & pig dealer
Kerridge Edgar King, farmer
Leatherdale John, farmer, Leef farm
Lord William, farmer; & at Elmswell
Matthews James, carrier
Mulley John, thatcher
Pickering William Thomas, farmer, Lodge Farm
Prike Luke, Thurlow Arms
Redit Walter (Mrs), blacksmith
Rice Eliza (Miss), farmer
Rodwell William, blacksmith
Wakelin Alice (Mrs), farmer, Rookery
Warren James, brick maker
Wright John, farmer & landowner, Grange Farm


And Last updated on: Tuesday, 28-Jun-2016 23:13:57 BST