Ashtead (St. Giles)

ASHTEAD (St. Giles), a parish, in the union of Epsom, Second division of the hundred of Copthorne, W. division of Surrey, 2 miles (S. W. by S.) from Epsom; containing 618 inhabitants. It comprises 2516a. 25p., of which 511 acres are common or waste; and is pleasantly situated on the road from London, by Dorking, to Bognor and Worthing. A small fair is held on the 4th of May. Ashtead Park is a fine structure of white brick, and is said to have cost nearly £100,000; it is surrounded by a demesne of 140 acres: here is preserved a very valuable collection of pictures. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £13. 15. 5., and in the patronage of the Hon. Fulk Greville Howard and Hon. Mrs. Howard: the tithes have been commuted for £549. 12. 6., and there are 12½ acres of glebe. The church is a neat building, beautifully situated in Ashtead Park. An hospital for six poor widows was founded by Lady Diana Fielding, and endowed with property producing £32. 7. per annum. Here is a mineral spring, the water of which is similar to that of the Epsom wells. A Roman encampment may be traced round what is now the churchyard and part of Ashtead Park; and the great Roman road by Noviomagus (now Woodcote Park) passes along the south side of the parish. Sir Robert Howard, the poet, resided here in the time of Charles II., by whom, it is said, he was often visited.

Transcribed from A Topographical Dictionary of England, by Samuel Lewis, 7th edition, published in 1848.

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