Cowling

COWLING, an ecclesiastical parish, in the parish of Kildwick, union of Skipton, E. division of the wapentake of Staincliffe and Ewcross, W. riding of York, 2½ miles (W. by S.) from Cross Hills; containing about 2500 inhabitants. This district borders westward on Lancashire. It includes a portion of the large tract of upland moor stretching across the western part of Craven, and partly slopes down towards the valley of the Aire, into which river it sends a stream of some magnitude. The area is about 5500 acres: the reclaimed land is almost entirely pasture-ground, the number of acres under tillage being very small; in parts the rocks rise abruptly to a considerable height, probably about 1000 feet, and there are several glens of great natural beauty. Good building-stone is quarried, some of which was used for the construction of the Liverpool docks. The road from Colne to Keighley passes through; and at Cross Hills is a station on the Leeds and Bradford Extension railway. The population is principally employed in hand loom weaving: there is also a small cotton-mill. Car Head, the seat of W. B. Wainman, Esq., with its woods and grounds, adds much to the attractions of the place. The parish was constituted in September 1845, under the act 6th and 7th Victoria, cap. 37: the living is in the gift of the Crown and the Bishop of Ripon, alternately; income, £150. The church is in the later English style, and consists of a nave, chancel, north and south aisles, and western tower; it is a handsome structure, on a good site, and forms a very pleasing object from several points of view: the total cost of the building, which was designed by Chantrell, was nearly £2000. There are two places of worship for Wesleyans, and two for Baptists. On the moor is a stone, called the Hitchin stone, supposed by some to have been used in Druidical rites; it is about ten feet high, in its general figure is rather cubical, and has a large hole passing through it in a sloping direction, as if drilled, and another joining the former in the centre, of sufficient size to admit a man.

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

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