Ercall Magna (St. Michael)

ERCALL MAGNA (St. Michael), a parish, in the union of Wellington, Wellington division of the hundred of South Bradford, N. division of Salop, 6 miles (N. W.) from Wellington; containing 1999 inhabitants. This place, which is of considerable antiquity, is noticed in the Norman survey as having a mill that yielded twelve weeks' provisions, and a fishery of 1500 great eels. In the reign of Henry III., John de Ercal or Ercalaw obtained the grant of a weekly market and an annual fair. During the civil war of the 17th century, Sir Richard Newport, of this place, supplied Charles I. with £6000, thus enabling his artillery to move against the parliamentarian forces immediately before the battle of Edge-Hill; in recompense for which service, Sir Richard was raised to the peerage by the title of Baron Newport, of High Ercall. The parish comprises 11,799 acres, and the Shrewsbury canal passes through it. The living is a discharged vicarage, valued in the king's books at £17. 6. 8.; net income, £273; patron, the Duke of Cleveland. The church is a spacious and ancient structure. At Rowton, at the extremity of the parish, is a chapel endowed with about £100 per annum. A free grammar school was founded and endowed under the benefaction of Thomas Leeke, a baron of the exchequer, in 1663; the income is £93. An hospital for the maintenance of seven decayed householders was founded by the Earl of Bradford, in 1694.

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

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