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Helen's, St.

HELEN'S, ST., a parish, in the liberty of East Medina, Isle of Wight division of the county of Southampton, 3 miles (S. E. by E.) from Ryde; containing 1373 inhabitants. The parish is bounded on the north by Spithead, on the east by Brading harbour, and on the south by the parish of Brading; and comprises 1832 acres, of which 18 are waste land or common. The village occupies an agreeable situation, overlooking the English Channel and Brading haven, and is neatly built in the form of a square, inclosing a green. A hamlet named Sea-View is a place of favourite resort in summer; and near the site of a priory of Cluniac monks, a handsome mansion called the Priory has been erected. Not far from Sea-View is a quarry of excellent stone, which is raised for building purposes, and in which are found numerous rare fossils. The living is a perpetual curacy, in the gift of Eton College, with a net income of £121: the tithes have been commuted for £265. 13. The original church was partly taken down at the commencement of the last century, in consequence of encroachments made by the sea, but part of the tower was left standing as a landmark. The second parish church, with the exception of the chancel, was rebuilt in 1830, at an expense of £600; it is a handsome cruciform edifice, with a square embattled tower, and contains a monument to Sir Nash Grose, a judge in the reign of George III., and one to his son, Capt. Grose, who fell at Waterloo. The district church of St. John, at Oakfield, was consecrated in July, 1843: the living is a perpetual curacy, in the patronage of the Incumbent of St. Helen's; net income, £100. There is a place of worship for Wesleyans. In a wood adjacent to the Priory mansion are some remains of an oratory; but no vestiges exist of the buildings of the priory, the ground on which it stood having been destroyed by the sea.

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