In 1870-72, John Marius Wilson's Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales described Leyton like this:
LEYTON, a village, a parish, and a sub-district, in West Ham district, Essex. The village stands adjacent to the river Lea, the Great Eastern railway, the boundary with Middlesex, and the London and Ongar railway, 5¼ miles NE by E of Bishopsgate, London; took its name, signifying Leatown, from its position on the Lea; occupies or is near the site of a Roman station, near the Roman or Stone way to Colchester; and where many coins and other relics of the Romans and some of the Saxons have been found; belonged to King Harold; comprises now one long street; contains respectable and handsome houses, embosomed in trees; is continuous with Knotts-Green and Lea-Bridge, which formerly were separate hamlets; and has a station on the Ongar railway, and a post office‡ under London NE. ...
The parish contains also the post offices‡ of Leyton-Street, Low Leyton, and Lea-Bridge, under Leyton, London NE; includes the village and chapelry of Leytonstone; is sometimes called Low Leyton; and lies within the jurisdiction of the metropolitan police. Acres, 2,241. Real property, £23,289. Pop. in 1851,3,901; in 1861,4,794. Houses, 762. Leyton Hon se, Leyton Park, Etloe House, Solway House, Leytonstone House, Forest House, Wallwood House, and Buxton House are prominent residences; and there are many other fine ones. Remains of ancient entrenchments, with a square double embankment surrounded by a moat, are at Ruckholts. Temple mills, on the Lea, were mills said to have belonged to the Knights Templars; but they were demolished to give place to water-works. The living is a vicarage in the diocese of London. Value, £450. * Patron, John Pardoe, Esq. The parish church, or church of St. Mary, is a small plain brick building; and contains monuments of Stripe the antiquary, who was vicar here for nearly 70 years,-Bowyer, the famous printer,-Goring, Earl of Norwich,-Sir Michael Hickes, and others. Another church, called the church of All Saints, was built in 1865, at a cost of £2,147; is in the decorated English style, cruciform, with five-light E window; and contains 560 sittings. There are a Wesleyan chapel in Leyton, an Independent chapel in Leytonstone, national schools in both places, eight alms houses, and a workhouse. The total yearly value of charities is £178. The workhouse is for West Ham district; and, at the census of 1861, had 572 inmates. Sir T. Roe, ambassador to the Great Mogul in the time of Charles I., was a native. -The sub-district contains also the parish of Wanstead. Acres, 4,245. Pop., 7,536. Houses, 1,108.
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 Leyton has changed, please see our redistricted information for the modern district of Waltham Forest. More detailed statistical data are available under Units and statistics, which includes both administrative units covering Leyton and units named after it.
GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of Leyton, in Waltham Forest and Essex | Map and description, A Vision of Britain through Time.
Date accessed: 11th December 2013
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