In 1870-72, John Marius Wilson's Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales described Stalbridge like this:
STALBRIDGE, a small town, a parish, and a sub-district, in Sturminster district, Dorset. The town stands on an affluent of the river Stour, adjacent to the Somerset and Dorset railway, 6 miles E by N of Sherborne; was known, at Domesday, as Staplebridge; contains a beautiful ancient cross, about 30 feet high; and has a post-office‡ under Blandford, a r. station with telegraph, an inn, a partial1y restored ancient church, Independent and Wesleyan chapels, a national school, a fortnightly market on Monday, and fairs on 6 May and 4 Sept. ...
The parish includes three tythings, and comprises 5,681 acres. Real property, £12,179; of which £50 are in quarries. Pop., 1,929. Houses, 411. The manor belonged to Sherborne abbey; passed to the Seymours, the Audleys, the Boyles, and the Walters; and belongs now to the Marquis of Westminster. The living is a rectory in the diocese of Salisbury. Value, £888.* Patron, Corpus Christi College, Cambridge.The sub-district contains six parishes. Acres, 15,678. Pop. 4,422. Houses, 967.
A Vision of Britain through Time includes a large library of local statistics for administrative units. For the best overall sense of how the area containing Stalbridge has changed, please see our redistricted information for the modern district of North Dorset. More detailed statistical data are available under Units and statistics, which includes both administrative units covering Stalbridge and units named after it.
GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of Stalbridge in North Dorset | Map and description, A Vision of Britain through Time.
Date accessed: 09th February 2016
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