Cradley

CRADLEY, a chapelry, in the parish of Hales-Owen, union of Stourbridge, Lower division of the hundred of Halfshire, Stourbridge and E. divisions of the county of Worcester, 1 mile (N. W. by N.) from Hales-Owen; containing 2686 inhabitants. This place is situated on the river Stour, by which it is separated on the north and north-west from the county of Stafford; it consists of 781a. 1r. 20p. of well-cultivated land, and is intersected by the road between Stourbridge and Hales-Owen. The surface is hilly, and the vicinity abounds with diversified and highly picturesque scenery. The Cradley iron-works were established two centuries ago, and in 1839 works were erected for chain-cables, anchors, anvils, &c.: the manufacture of nails, traces, gun-barrels, and various other articles in iron, is carried on to a considerable extent. There are also mines of coal in the township, but of inferior quality. The Dudley canal passes at the distance of two miles. About a mile from the village is a remarkable salt-spring, and an attempt was made to introduce the manufacture of salt, but without success: the water was subsequently analyzed, and found to be strongly impregnated with sulphate of soda, magnesia, and other mineral substances; and warm and cold baths were erected on the spot, now called Cradley Spa, and, from the beauty of their situation, much frequented. The living is a perpetual curacy; net income £150; patrons and impropriators, certain Trustees. The chapel was erected about the year 1789, and is situated on the brow of a hill commanding an agreeable prospect; it is a neat brick building, and underwent a thorough repair in 1824-5. There are places of worship for Baptists, Wesleyans, and Unitarians. In a large wood, called Cradley Park, are vestiges of a moat which surrounded some ancient building.

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

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