Eccles (St. Mary)

ECCLES (St. Mary), a parish, in the hundred of Happing, E. division of Norfolk, 4 miles (N. E.) from Stalham; containing 53 inhabitants. The parish is situated on the coast, and comprises 318 acres, whereof 145 are arable, 112 pasture and meadow, and 61 waste. In 1605, the land was reduced several hundred acres by a dreadful inundation of the sea, which swept from the village 66 houses, leaving only 14; and in the reign o Charles I. a similar calamity occurred; but the sandhills now oppose a sufficient barrier to any further encroachments. The living is a discharged rectory, valued in the king's books at £8, and in the gift of Edward Lombe, Esq.: the tithes have been commuted for £58. 10. The church, with the exception of the tower, which still remains, was swallowed up by the inundation of 1605, and the inhabitants use the church of Hempstead.

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

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