In 1870-72, John Marius Wilson's Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales described Forton like this:
FORTON, or Forton and Mere, a parish in the district of Newport and county of Stafford; on a branch of the Birmingham and Liverpool canal, contiguous to Salop, and adjacent to the Shrewsbury and Stafford railway, 1½ mile NNE of Newport, Salop. It includes the township of Sutton and the tything of Meertown; and its post town is Newport, Salop. Acres, 3, 718. Real property, £5, 432. Pop., 729. Houses, 137. The property is divided among a few. The living is a rectory in the diocese of Lichfield. Value, £474.* Patron, Sir T. F. Boughey, Bart. The church is good; and there are an endowed school with £12, and other charities with £61.
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 Forton has changed, please see our redistricted information for the modern district of Stafford. More detailed statistical data are available under Units and statistics, which includes both administrative units covering Forton and units named after it.
GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of Forton, in Stafford and Staffordshire | Map and description, A Vision of Britain through Time.
Date accessed: 03rd September 2014
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