Hagley (St. John the Baptist)

HAGLEY (St. John the Baptist), a parish, in the union of Bromsgrove, Lower division of the hundred of Halfshire, Stourbridge and E. divisions of the county of Worcester, 2 miles (S.) from Stourbridge; containing 744 inhabitants. The parish comprises 2382a. 1r. 30p., and is intersected by the roads from Stourbridge to Bromsgrove, and from Kidderminster to Hales-Owen, which here cross each other; the surface generally has a gradual descent, and in some parts is beautifully undulated. Hagley Hall and park, the delightful residence and property of the noble family of Lyttelton, have been celebrated by the muse of Pope, and have elicited deserved eulogy from the pens of numerous tourists and writers. The mansion is substantial and handsome, containing spacious apartments; and the park, which is embellished with stately trees, is tastefully laid out in pleasure-grounds and walks, commanding much picturesque beauty. Harborough was the residence of William Penn, Esq., one of whose daughters was the mother of Shenstone, the poet, who spent many of his juvenile hours at this place. The village contains some genteel houses, and several highly respectable families reside in the vicinity. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £10. 6. 5½., and in the gift of Lord Lyttelton: the tithes have been commuted for £482. 10., and the glebe comprises 53 acres. The church, lately enlarged with 205 sittings, is situated in the park: in 1754, the chancel was rebuilt of freestone by George, first lord Lyttelton, and decorated with a window of richly painted glass. Among the monuments to members of the family, is a particularly chaste one to the memory of Lucy, wife of the peer just named, the elegant historian, poet, and miscellaneous writer, who was born at Hagley. On Witchbury Hill is a large Roman encampment.

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

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