Hoxton (St. John the Baptist)

HOXTON (St. John the Baptist), a district parish, in the union of Shoreditch, Tower division of the hundred of Ossulstone, county of Middlesex, half a mile (N. E.) from London. This place, originally a hamlet in the parish of St. Leonard, Shoreditch, having become an extensive and populous district, was constituted a parish by act of parliament in 1830. It is divided into the Old Town and New Town; the former containing a number of ancient and spacious houses, many of which have fallen into decay, and some have been converted into private lunatic asylums: the New Town consists of numerous well-formed streets and neat ranges of modern buildings, occasionally interspersed with cottages; it is well paved, lighted with gas, and amply supplied with water. The principal manufactories are for machinery of various kinds, pins, vinegar, &c.: there is an extensive saw-mill; and on the banks of the Regent's canal, which passes through the northern part of the parish, are lime and coal wharfs.

The living is a perpetual curacy; net income, £450; patron, the Archdeacon of London. The church was erected in 1826, by the Parliamentary Commissioners, at an expense of £13,000, and is a handsome edifice of light brick, with a cornice and ornaments of stone, and a steeple consisting of successive stages of campanile turrets crowned by a dome. A church, called Christ Church, was erected in the New North Road, by means of the Bishop of London's fund, and was consecrated June 22nd, 1839; it is a neat building in the early Norman style, and contains 1200 sittings, nearly half of which are free. A district has been assigned to it, and the living has been augmented to £400 per annum out of the Canonry and Prebend Suspension Fund; patron, the Bishop. A third church was completed, in Hoxton New Town, in 1847; it is a neat edifice of Kentish ragstone in the pointed style, with a spire. There are places of worship for Independents, Wesleyans, and Methodists of the New Connexion; and the ancient cemetery of the Jews is in the parish. Viscountess Lumley founded and endowed almshouses for six aged persons, which were rebuilt in 1822. The Haberdashers' almshouses were founded in 1692, by Robert Aske, who endowed them with estates for the support of 20 poor members of that company, and for the maintenance and education of 20 boys, sons of freemen of the company; the old buildings were taken down in 1825, and the present handsome structure erected on the site. The premises occupy three sides of a quadrangular area, and contain a chapel with a portico of the Grecian-Doric order, having near it apartments for the chaplain and schoolmaster, a schoolroom and dormitory for the boys, and domestic offices; the wings, in front of which is a colonnade, are appropriated to the aged men, who have each a separate house, and are in other respects comfortably provided for. William Fuller, Esq., in 1795, founded and endowed almshouses for twelve aged women, and by additional endowments accommodation is now afforded for twenty-eight. Almshouses near Gloucester-terrace were founded in 1749, by Mrs. Mary Westby, who endowed them for ten aged women.

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