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Stoke, East (St. Mary)

STOKE, EAST (St. Mary), a parish, in the union of Wareham and Purbeck, hundred of Winfrith, Wareham division of Dorset, 4 miles (W. by S.) from Wareham; containing 590 inhabitants. The parish is situated on the road from Wareham to Dorchester, and comprises by admeasurement 5860 acres, consisting of about equal portions of arable, pasture, and heath; the soil is various, comprehending several sandy and gravelly mixtures, with a little clay. The situation is pleasant, commanding a distant view of the Purbeck hills, and embracing a fertile valley watered by the river Froome. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £14. 12. 11.; net income, £326; patrons, Sir W. Oglander, Bart. The church is a neat edifice, built by subscription, in 1827, at an expense of £1700. Bindon Abbey, in the parish, was founded in 1172, by Robert de Newburgh and Maud his wife, who endowed it for monks of the Cistercian order; it was dedicated to St. Mary, and at the Dissolution its revenue was valued at £229. 2. 1., and the site granted to Sir Thomas Poynings. The beautiful remains consist principally of an angle of the tower of the church, and part of the walls, with the foundations.

Transcribed from A Topographical Dictionary of England, by Samuel Lewis, seventh edition, published 1858.