Docking (St. Mary)

DOCKING (St. Mary), a parish, and the head of a union, in the hundred of Smithdon, W. division of Norfolk, 11 miles (N. N. W.) from Rougham; containing 1537 inhabitants. In the charter of endowment of Eton College, mention is made of the alien priory of Dokkyng, the monks whereof are supposed by Tanner to have belonged to the Abbey de Ibreio, in Normandy, to which this church was formerly appropriated. Summerfield, about two miles north-westward, is a corruption of Suthmere, which, at the period of the Norman survey, and later, was a town of some importance, with a church dedicated to All Saints, which was standing in 1378, but of which no vestiges now remain, though the benefice is still continued as a sinecure rectory, in the gift of Eton College. The parish, exclusively of Summerfield, comprises 5077a. 1r. 4p., of which 107 acres are common or waste; the manor of Summerfield contains 1192a. 1r. 25p., whereof 1000 acres are arable, 50 pasture and meadow, and 100 woodland. In the village is a well of unusual depth, from which the inhabitants are supplied with water. Petty-sessions are held on the last Monday in the month. The living is a discharged vicarage, valued in the king's books at £13. 6. 8.; patrons and impropriators, the Provost and Fellows of Eton College; net income, £459. The tithes of All Saints' have been commuted for £250. The church is chiefly in the early and decorated styles, and has a lofty embattled tower; the font is handsome, and elaborately sculptured: the edifice was repewed and thoroughly repaired in 1837, chiefly at the expense of the Rev. Mr. Hare. There are places of worship for Wesleyans and Primitive Methodists. The poor law union comprises thirty-six parishes or places.

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

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