Hornsea (St. Nicholas)

HORNSEA (St. Nicholas), a parish, and formerly a market-town, in the union of Skirlaugh, N. division of the wapentake of Holderness, E. riding of York, 17 miles (N. N. E.) from Hull, and 190 (N.) from London; containing, with Burton, 1005 inhabitants. This place, which was formerly more than six miles from the coast, is now not more than half a mile distant from it; and the village of Hornsea Beck, not many years since, was totally destroyed by the encroachments of the sea, which is still progressively advancing. The town consists of four well-built streets, and contains some inns and respectable lodging-houses for the accommodation of visiters, who frequent the place for sea-bathing during the season. The environs are exceedingly pleasant, abounding with picturesque scenery, and commanding some fine views; on the western side is a lake covering 467 acres, containing fresh-water fish of every description, and beautifully interspersed with wooded islands, the resort of numerous aquatic birds; the banks are in many places planted with firs and elders, and form a delightful promenade. An act was passed in 1846, enabling the York and North-Midland Railway Company to make a branch to this place, 10½ miles long. The market, on Monday, has been for some time discontinued; the fairs are on August 13th and December 18th, for horses and cattle. The parish comprises about 3000 acres of land. The living is a vicarage, with the rectory of Long Riston united, valued in the king's books at £13. 3. 4.. and in the patronage of the Crown; net income, £382; impropriator of Hornsea, the Rev. C. J. Constable. The tithes were commuted for land and a money payment in 1801. The church is a spacious structure, in the decorated English style, with insertions of a later date; the spire, which was a conspicuous landmark, was blown down more than a century since. The rent of land, now £120 per annum, is appropriated to the repairs of the edifice. There are places of worship for Independents and Wesleyans; also an infants' school; and a national school is about to be established. In the parish is a saline chalybeate spring, formerly in much repute, but the waters are not now used.

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

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