Bywell (St. Peter)

BYWELL (St. Peter), a parish, in the union of Hexham, E. division of Tindale ward, S. division of Northumberland; containing 1512 inhabitants, of whom 131 are in part of the township of Bywell, 4 miles (E. S. E.) from Corbridge, and 14 (W. by S.) from Newcastle-upon-Tyne. This parish, which is about 13 miles in length, and from 2 to 3 in breadth, is on the north and south sides of the Tyne, and comprises the townships of East Acomb, Apperley, Broomley, Espershields, High Fortherley, Healey, Newton, Newton-Hall, Newlands, and Stelling; the chapelry of Whittonstall; and part of the township of Bywell; the whole forming an area, by measurement, of about 14,000 acres, of which 7000 are arable, about 4850 pasture, and 2150 woodland. The north and north-west parts are intersected by the parish of Bywell St. Andrew: a portion of the land is very fertile and beautifully diversified by gentle swells, and wood and water; but much consists of wild moors, of which nearly 3000 acres have been inclosed. The Mansion-House, the seat of Mr. Beaumont, stands in a lawn adorned by forest-trees, having the river on its south side, with a beautiful islet, and on the opposite bank are extensive plantations. The village, which is partly in the parish of Bywell St. Andrew, and partly in that of St. Peter, is pleasantly situated on the north bank of the Tyne: it was formerly noted for the manufacture of saddlers' ironmongery, which was in a flourishing state in the 16th century, and is mentioned in their report by the commissioners of Queen Elizabeth; but which has now wholly declined. The Newcastle and Carlisle railway has a station here; and Mr. Beaumont has erected a handsome stone bridge of seven arches, at a cost of £10,000. The living is a vicarage, valued in the king's books at £9. 18. 1½.; net income, £119; patrons and appropriators, the Dean and Chapter of Durham, whose tithes have been commuted for £1358, and who have a glebe of 21 acres. The church is an ancient edifice of large dimensions, with a tower, standing near the church of St. Andrew. At Whittonstall is a separate living. There are places of worship for Baptists, Roman Catholics, and Wesleyans. At a short distance from the Hall are the ruins of the old baronial castle of Bywell, once a very strong fortress; the fine square tower is entire, and from its top is an extensive prospect.

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

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