Bildeston, or Bilson (St. Mary)
BILDESTON, or BILSON (St. Mary), a parish, and formerly a market-town, in the union and hundred of Cosford, county of Suffolk, 5 miles (N. N. W.) from Hadleigh, 14½ miles (W. N. W.) from Ipswich, and 66 (N. E. by N.) from London; containing 857 inhabitants. It comprises 1289a. 2r. 28p. of land, the soil of which is a strong productive clay. The manufacture of blankets and woollen-cloth was formerly carried on, and subsequently the chief employment of the inhabitants consisted in spinning yarn; but this also has much declined. The market was held on Wednesday; there are fairs on Ash-Wednesday and Holy-Thursday. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £12. 16. 10½.; patron and incumbent, the Rev. Charles Johnson: the tithes have been commuted for £412. 4. 6., and there are 50 acres of glebe. The church is a handsome spacious structure. There is a place of worship for Baptists. A chapel existed here, dedicated to St. Leonard, in which divine service was performed long after the Reformation.