In 1870-72, John Marius Wilson's Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales described Wellington like this:
WELLINGTON, a town, a parish, a sub-district, and a district, in Somerset. The town stands on a gentle elevation, near the Bristoland Exeter railway, at the foot of the Blackdown hills, 6½ miles SW by W of Taunton; gives the titles of Viscount, Earl, and Duke to the family of Wellesley; is a seat of petty-sessions and county courts; is governed by a portreeve and some other officers; publishes two weekly newspapers; carries on woollen manufacture and iron-founding; comprises five streets, containing many respectable residences; and has a head post-office,‡ designated Wellington, Somerset, a r. ...
station with telegraph, a banking office, two chief inns, a police station, a market house and town hall, a library and reading room, a fine ancient church with graceful later English tower, a handsome modern church, a neat Independent chapel of 1861, five other dissenting chapels, national and British schools, alms houses with £149 a year, a workhouse, a weekly market on Thursday, and two annual fairs. Pop. in 1861, 3,689. Houses, 793.The parish includes three hamlets, and comprises 5,195 acres. Real property, £21,088; of which £30 are in gasworks. Pop. in 1851, 6,415; in 1861, 6,006. Houses, 1,261. The manor belonged to Alfred the Great; was given to the see of Wells; passed to the Somersets and the Pophams; and belongs now to the Duke of Wellington. A pillar, monumental of Wellington and Waterloo, stands on a lofty hill, 2½ miles S of the town; figures conspicuously over an extensive picturesque landscape; and was designed to be surmounted by a bronze statue of the hero of Waterloo. The living is a vicarage, united with Trinity and West Buckland chapelries, in the diocese of Bath and Wells. Value, £1,084.* Patron, Mrs. Pulman.The sub-district contains six parishes. Acres, 13,563. Pop., 8,305. Houses, 1,745.The district comprehends also Culmstock, Milverton, and Wiveliscombe sub-districts; and comprises 60,454 acres. Poor rates in 1863, £12,378. Pop. in 1851, 22,121; in 1861, 20,480. Houses, 4,356. Marriages in 1863, 134; births, 577,-of which 31 were illegitimate; deaths, 380, -of which 125 were at ages under 5 years, and 22 at ages above 85. Marriages in the ten years 1851-60, 1,305; births, 6,147; deaths, 3,919. The places of worship, in 1851, were 27 of the Church of England, with 9,367 sittings; 5 of Independents, with 1,451 s.; 6 of Baptists, with 1,692 s.; 3 of Quakers, with 372 s.; 8 of Wesleyans, with 1,416 s.; 3 of Bible Christians, with 345 s.; and 1 undefined, with 200 s. The schools were 19 public day-schools, with 1,373 scholars; 37 private day-schools, with 933 s.; 37 Sunday schools, with 2,915 s.; and 4 evening schools for adults, with 49 s.
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 Wellington has changed, please see our redistricted information for the modern district of Taunton Deane. More detailed statistical data are available under Units and statistics, which includes both administrative units covering Wellington and units named after it.
GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of Wellington, in Taunton Deane and Somerset | Map and description, A Vision of Britain through Time.
Date accessed: 20th June 2013
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