Mayfield (St. Dunstan)

MAYFIELD (St. Dunstan), a parish, in the union of Uckfield, hundred of Loxfield-Camden, rape of Pevensey, E. division of Sussex, 9 miles (E. N. E.) from Uckfield; containing 2943 inhabitants. Henry III. granted a charter for a market and two fairs to be held here; the former has long been disused, and the latter are on May 30th for pedlery, and November 13th for cattle and pedlery. A great fire broke out at Mayfield in 1389, which burned the church and the greater part of the village. The parish is situated on the road from Toubridge-Wells to Eastbourne, and comprises by computation 13,133 acres, of which about 500 are hopgrounds; the surface is diversified with hills, and the lower grounds are watered by the river Rother. The soil is principally clay, alternated with sand; iron sandstone is abundant, and there were formerly furnaces for smelting ore. A corn-market is held every Wednesday. The living is a vicarage, valued in the king's books at £17. 13. 4.; net income, £834; patron and incumbent, the Rev. H. T. M. Kirby; chief impropriators, Lord Carrington, and the trustees of Smith's charity. The church is a handsome structure in the later English style, with a square tower surmounted by a low spire, and from its elevated situation is conspicuous for many miles in every direction. Here are places of worship for Independents and Wesleyans. A free school, founded in 1749, has an endowment of £27 per annum. There are some fine remains of a mansion that belonged to the archbishops of Canterbury before the Reformation, consisting of the gatehouse, porter's lodge, and a considerable portion of the magnificent hall: a large room in that part of the building still habitable, was occupied by Elizabeth in 1573, during the entertainment given by Sir Thomas Gresham, then proprietor of the house, to the queen and her suite, in her progress through Kent.

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

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