Ayton, Great (All Saints)
AYTON, GREAT (All Saints), a parish, in the union of Stokesley, W. division of the liberty of Langbaurgh, N. riding of York; containing 1216 inhabitants, of whom 1014 are in the township of Great Ayton, 3 miles (N. E. by E.) from Stokesley. This parish, which is on the road from Stokesley to Guisborough, consists of the townships of Great Ayton, Little Ayton, and Nunthorpe, and comprises about 5640 acres; the lands are chiefly arable and pasture in nearly equal portions; the surface is diversified, and much of the scenery is very beautiful. A large seam of whinstone runs across the whole district, passes through the parish, and is wrought in several quarries; the stone is a hard blue, of excellent quality, and much used in making roads. Iron-ore is also found, and a mine was opened at Cliffrigg-Woods, but the works have been for some time discontinued. There are two oil-mills and three tanneries; and the manufacture of linen, once a flourishing trade here, still affords employment to a few of the inhabitants. The living is a perpetual curacy, in the patronage of the family of Marwood, the impropriators, with a net income of £82. The church is a neat unadorned edifice of considerable antiquity, with a square tower; the chancel is separated from the nave by an enriched Norman arch. There is a second church at Nunthorpe, forming a separate incumbency. The Independents, Primitive Methodists, Wesleyans, and Society of Friends have places of worship. A school founded in 1704 by Michael Postgate, and rebuilt in 1785, has an endowment of about £10 per annum: at this school the celebrated navigator, Captain Cook, received a portion of his education, at the expense of Thomas Scottowe, Esq., whom his father served as manager of a farm. There is also a large agricultural school connected with the Society of Friends; and in the middle of the village are three almshouses, built by subscription.