Swineshead History Montage

Swineshead Directories


Lincolnshire - Swineshead

William White's History, Gazetteer & Directory of Lincolnshire 1842

SWINESHEAD is a small market town, consisting chiefly of one long street on the Sleaford and Holbeach road, 6 1/2 miles S.W. by W. of Boston, and on the south side of hammond Beck and Holland Fen, in the heart of a rich grazing and farming country, a great part of which was formerly inundated in wet seasons. Its parish comprises many scattered hamlets and farm-houses, and contains upwards of 2000 inhabitants, and 6728 acres of land, including a large allotment of Holland Fen, near Chapel Hill, and the Black Sluice, or South Forth-foot-drain, extending nearly 9 miles N.; and an extra-parochial hamlet in Harts Grounds, called Gibbet Hills(175 A.) belonging to W.C.Ingall, Esq., and distant 2 miles N.W. of the town. J.T.Dyson, Esq., is lord of Swineshead Manor; Richard Calthrop, Esq., is Lord of the Abbey Manor; and Trinity College, Cambridge, owns the rectory, about 700 acres, held by various lessees The Cooper, Casswell, Ingall, Barnes, Jackson, and other families, have freehold estates in the parish.

The market, held every Thursday, was of considerable importance till the middle of the seventeenth century, when the corporation of Boston used means for its suppression. It may now be considered obsolete, except that some of the neighbouring farmers assemble in the evening at one of the inns for recreation and business. Here are still two annual fairs, on the second Thursday in June, and on October second; the latter chiefly for the sale of chees and onions.

Though now more than seven miles from the great Wash, the tides formerly came up to the town and there was a haven near the market place, crossed by a bridge, which was taken down nearly fifty years ago, when the channel was choked up.

In 1134, an ABBEY of Cistertian monks was founded, nearly a mile E. of the town, by Robert Greslie. Henry II. confirmed by charter to the monks of swineshead, "all their lands and possessions, there, and at Cotgreve, Casterton, &c. with the mills of Burtoft, Sudwell, Maincester, Caldecot, and Casterton, with all their estates, given them by whatever benefactor soever." At the dissolution, the yearly revenue of this monastery is stated by Leyland to have been about £80; but Dugdale estimates it at £167. 15s. 3d, and Speed at £175. 19s.10d. Its site was granted in the fifth of Edward VI. to Edward Lord Clinton, and the lands were granted by Henry VIII. to Harold Rossel, for the sum of £684. 16s. 8d., and Harold had a license to pass them to george Pierpont,Esq. and Elizabeth his wife.

The present mansion was built out of the abbey ruins, nearly two centuries ago, by one of the Ormes, of Kirton. It is now the seat and property of Richard Calthrop, Esq., by whose family it has been greatly improved and modernised. King John, after crossing the Wash, on his road to Sleaford, rested at this abbey, and is said to have been poisoned by one of the monks. There is in the house a print engraved more than 360 years ago, representing the monk mixing the poison, presenting the cup to the king, and receiving absolution for his crime.

Many valuable coins have been dug up near the abbey; (one of them inscribed "John Bando, merchant, Swineshead.) and about a quarter of a mile to the north-west, at the head of the old river Haff, where the fen-waters originally entered, there was a Danish encampment, called the "Man-war-rings,"and forming a circle of sixty yards in diameter, surrounded by two ditches, between which there is a carriage rod. The workmen employed in sinking a well near the abbey, in 1825, found several skeletons, one of which measured six feet four inches. Swineshead Church (St. Mary), is a handsome building with a lofty spire and eight bells. It is a discharged vicarage valued inK.B. at £14. 9s. and now at £240, in the patronage of Trinity College, Cambridge, and incumbency of the Rev. J.W.Barnes. A chapel of ease was erected in 1826, at Chapel Hill, about 8 miles N. of the town, for the accommodation of the fen part of the parish, and it is a curacy now valued at £47.

The Baptists and Wesleyans have each a chapel in the town. By will in 1711, and codicil in 1718, Thomas Cowley, of the Wikes, bequeathed his lands and tenements in Swineshead, for the education of poor children, and the relief of poor parishioners. With an allotment made at the enclosure, this charity now produces &160 per annum. Until 1825, there was no school-room belonging to Cowley's charity; but in that year the trustees purchased a piece of land upon which they erected two school rooms, towards which they received £70 from the National School Society, and £40 given by the late vicar and other contributors. The schools are now free to all the poor boys and girls of the parish, and the teachers, (Mr. and Mrs. Stobie) receive a yearly salary of £70.

The remainder of the income is distributed in coals and clothing on St. Thomas's day, except twelve two-penny loaves, given weekly at the church. R.Calthrop, R.O.Milson, T.Holmes, T.Ingall, and the vicar, are thye trustees.

The parish has for the reparation of its highways, lands and buildings, let for £58. 19s. per annum, bequeathed at an early period by John Butler. The poor parishioners have distributed among them about £226 per annum, arising from lands and buildings, in the following proportions, viz., £82 from land &c., left by Henry Pridgeon, in 1661, and William Whiting in 1727; @16, Thomas Dickonson, in 1674; £35, William Heart, in 1699; £33, John Dickonson, in 1719; and £60 for Fen Allotments. The two Dickonson's left four acres of land to the vicar. Here is an Association for the Prosecution of Felons, of which Mr William Barnes is treasurer; also Lodges of Odd Fellows and Foresters, and a Friendly Society.


POST OFFICE at Mrs My. Spring's.
Letters are received and despatched
at 11 morning and 2 afternoon

marked 1, live at Bar bridge; 2, Chapel hill; 3, Drayton; 4, Fortyfoot bridge; 5, Hammond beck; 6, North end; 7, Swineshead fen; 7, Fen houses; 9, Tarry hill; and the rest in Swineshead, or where specified

Barnes Rev. Jph. Watkin, M.A.vicar

Calthrop Richard,Esq. Abbey

6 Cooley John, land surveyor

Cooper Thomas, Esq, Lodge

Dawson Samuel, brazier and sexton

Hodgson Mrs Ann // Hare Mary

9 Holland Mr Peter

Horner Joseph, plumber and glazier

Milson Richard Odlin, registrar

Moor Lemuel, basket maker

Odom John, cooper

Reed William, hair dresser

Rouse John, weaver

Reddish William Dalby, gentleman

Shaw Rt. road surveyor & constable

6 Tedd Thos. farrier and constable

6 Watson Thomas, swine dealer

Willerton John, wool merchant

Vent John, organist


4 Barge John Sewell

Black Bull, Wm. Fox, Market place

2 Crown, Rebecca Tooley

Golden Ball, James Brackenbury

6 Golden Cross, Mark Hodgson(and brewer)

Green Dragon, Christopher Howard

Griffin Inn, Henry Smith

6 King's Head, Michael Peart

Red Lion, Robert Lupton

Swan, George Monks

Wheat Sheaf, John Jessop (brewer)

3 Brackenbury Edward

Broughton Thos.

8 Brown John

9 Casswell Rd.

9 Carnall Thos.

7 Coates Edward, Ivy house

3 Dean John

Ellis Esther

5 Fisher Richard

Grimble Mary

Grimble Thomas

9 Harrison Wm.

7 Henson Wm.

Hides Richard, Holt hill

1 Hides Thomas, Bar bridge hs

Holmes Thomas, Parks

Ingall Wm. Casswell, Gibbet hills

Jackson John, Cross gates

Jackson Mark, Hardwick grng

5 Lister John

Long William, Holt hill

7 Long Wm. jun.

9 Meredith Wm.

9 Mogs John Rt.

Morris Wm. Bank

Noble Benjamin, Rectory house

6 Rylatt Henry

3 Sewell Francis

Sewell John

6 Shaw Robert

Sharp Jph. Bank

3 Sleight Thomas

6 Sleight Richard

Sparrow Wm.West Low grnds

1 Stephenson Dd.West Low grnds

Stephenson Copg

2 Stothard Dknsn

2 Stothard Edwd.

Stubley Brittain

3 Stubley James

8 Thorpe Mrs

8 Thorpe Thos.

Teesdale Edwd. Stennington hall

Tuffnall John

8 Wass George

Watson Edward

5 Woodcock Jas.

2 Wright Wm.

3 Would Thomas

Grocers & Drprs

Barnes Wm.( & Tallow chandler)

6 Blackburn Jabs.

2 Cooke William

9 Godbehere Wm. Hart C.

Knight John

6 Ward John

Joiners, &c.

Brown John

Dalton James

Mawer P.

Morris Thomas

Wanty Samuel

Young Thomas

Millers & Bakers
Mkd.* bkrs. only

2 Bannister Edw.

*Bland John

*Cook William

6 Cuthbert Robt.

3 Jessop William

*Jessop Zeber

* Rastall Thomas

2 Stothard Edw.

9 Stubley Edwd.

Tindall Rd.Jph.


Mawer Mrs

Tooley Miss L.


Ellwood John

Spring William

6 Woodcock Rt.


Allen P.(hair dsr)

6 Armstrong Ths.

6 Cook Robert

1 Jackson John

Knight John

Rayson John

3 Robinson John

Sparrow John


Milson & Mawer

Whyers William

Tailors & Drprs.

Huffer William

6 Jaques John

2 Tooley Joseph

Wakeling John


Allen Thomas

Reast John

5 Stutely Richd.

Weselby Wm.(& chrch. bell hngr)


William Cook, to Boston, Wed. and Saturday

William, Would's vessels

to Boston, Lincoln, and Yorkshire


Gill Eleanor

Hudson Elizabth. and Mary

Stobie Geo. and Mrs. Free Schl.

Whaley Robert

Beer Houses

Allbones John

Blackburn Richd.

Favill Thomas

6 Jaques Thomas

6 Manton Thos.

3 Plowright William

4 Woodcock Thos.

Would Wm. coal mert.Gibbet hills


4 Harris William

2 Hayes William

Willson Thomas

Woods George


Newton John

Spinks Robert

Tyler Francis

Wilson John


Aspland Joseph

Crown Martin

Ingall Robert

6 Sandall John

6 Sandall John Stennet

2 Tooley James


Smyth Ann

Wright Robert


6 Wilson John

3 Woods William


Allen James, Barthorp

3 Aspland Tunnard, Drayton cottage

Bell John, Bank

3 Blanchard Wm.

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