Hendon (St. Mary)

HENDON (St. Mary), a parish, and the head of a union, in the hundred of Gore, county of Middlesex, 7 miles (N. W.) from London; containing 3327 inhabitants. This place was in the tenth century given by Dunstan, Archbishop of Canterbury, to the abbots of Westminster, who had a palace here, the remains of which have been converted into a private mansion. The village is pleasantly situated on an eminence, in a small vale watered by the river Brent, over which is an ancient bridge of stone; the houses are irregularly built. The parish contains numerous villas, and abounds with rural walks and agreeable scenery. On Highwood Hill is a mansion in which Lord William Russell resided previously to his arrest, now occupied by Lady Raffles; and near it is a mineral spring impregnated with cathartic salt. Hendon Place, the seat of Lord Tenterden, and once a banqueting-house belonging to Queen Elizabeth, is a handsome mansion, consisting of a centre and two wings, with a magnificent ball-room attached by a light arcade; the grounds have a fine undulated surface, and are enriched with some noble timber: a remarkably beautiful cedar here is said to have been planted by Elizabeth. A court leet for the manor is held on the Tuesday before Whitsuntide, and a court baron occasionally. The parishioners are exempt from all tolls throughout England, an immunity of which the farmers avail themselves in sending hay to Smithfield.

The living is a vicarage, valued in the king's books at £15, and in the patronage of J. Masterman, Esq., with a net income of £1280; impropriators, J. Fletcher, Esq., and others. The great tithes have been commuted for £1771. 7. 7., and the vicarial for £848. 10.; there are 4½ acres of glebe. The church is a spacious structure in the decorated English style, with some small Norman remains, and a square embattled tower: the altar-piece is finely sculptured, and the east window embellished with a well-executed painting of the Last Supper, and other subjects; there are several ancient monuments, and a Norman font. In the churchyard is a mausoleum to the late Mr. Rundell, the goldsmith, of Ludgate-hill. A church was erected at Mill-Hill, in the later English style, chiefly at the expense of the late William Wilberforce, Esq.; it is dedicated to St. Paul, and the living is in the gift of the Vicar. There are places of worship for Independents and Wesleyans. A schoolroom for boys was erected by John Bennet, Esq., on a piece of land given by Garrick, the actor, then lord of the manor. Robert Daniels, Esq., of London, in 1681 bequeathed £2000 for the erection and endowment of an almshouse for ten aged men and women, with which sum 132 acres of land were purchased; and six almshouses were erected in 1696, by Thomas Nichol, who endowed them for aged persons. At Mill-Hill is the Protestant Dissenters' grammar school, founded in 1807, on the site of the residence of Peter Collinson, Esq., an eminent naturalist, at an expense of £25,000. The poor-law union of Hendon comprises eight parishes or places, and contains 15,444 inhabitants. At a place called the Hyde, in the parish, a gold coin of one of the Cæsars was found a few years since. William Rawlinson, Esq., a master in chancery, and keeper of the seals; Dr. Edward Fowler, Bishop of Gloucester; Charles Johnson, a dramatic author; Dr. James Parsons, anatomist and antiquary; Sir Joseph Ayloff, vice-president of the Society of Antiquaries; and other eminent persons, have been interred here.

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