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Willingham (St. Mary and All Saints)

WILLINGHAM (St. Mary and All Saints), a parish, in the union of Chesterton, hundred of Papworth, county of Cambridge, 6¼ miles (E. by S.) from St. Ives; containing 1454 inhabitants. The parish comprises 4663 acres, of which 1638 are common or waste. Much of the cheese which takes its name from the neighbouring village of Cottenham is made at this place, where about 1200 milch-cows are usually kept. An act for draining certain fen land and low grounds was passed in 1842. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £18. 8. 1½ and in the patronage of the Bishop of Ely: the tithes have been commuted for £670, and there are 80 acres of glebe. The church is an ancient edifice: on the north side of the chancel is a chapel in the decorated English style, with a stone roof of singular construction. Here is a place of worship for Baptists. A charity school was founded by subscription, in 1593, and an estate purchased for its endowment, which now produces £20 a year; it is further endowed with a rentcharge of £10, bequeathed in 1700 by Dr. Saywell, Master of Jesus College, Cambridge. An almshouse for four widows, founded in 1616 by William Smith, provost of King's College, Cambridge, is endowed with £18 per annum.

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