Descriptive Gazetteer Entry for DRIFFIELD

DRIFFIELD, a town, a parish, a sub-district, and a district in E. R. Yorkshire. The town stands on a fertile plain, at the foot of the eastern wolds, near the source of the river Hull, adjacent to the Hull and Scarborough railway, 11½ miles N of Beverley. It was known to the Saxons as Driffelda; and seems to have been the centre of many contests, in the times of the kingdom of Northumbria. It is washed by a brook, enlarging into a canal 5 miles long, going into communication with canals to Hull; and consists chiefly of one long wide street. It has a head post office, ‡ a railway station with telegraph, three banking offices, four chief inns, a parish church, five dissenting chapels, a corn exchange, and a work-house; and is a polling-place for the east riding, and the capital of the York Wolds. The church is a handsome structure, mainly Norman and early English, of nave, aisles, and chancel, with a fine tower of decorated English date. An Independent chapel was built in 1867, at a cost of nearly £15, 000; is in the Italian Gothic style; and has a gallery all round the interior. The corn exchange was built in 1842. Markets are held on Thursdays; fairs, on Easter Monday, Whit-Monday, 26 Aug. and 19 Sep.; and a considerable trade in corn, carpets, and cotton fabrics is carried on. Pop., 4, 244. Houses, 948.—The parish comprises the townships of Great Driffield, Little Driffield, and Emswe-with-Kellythorpe. Acres, 7, 434. Real property, £23, 158. Pop., 4, 734. Houses, 1, 028. The property is much subdivided. Tumuli, seemingly of the times of the Danes, occur in various places, particularly on a farm called Danes-dale, 3 miles from the town; and some of them have yielded flint spear-heads, fragments of urns, and beads of jet, glass, and amber. The living is a vicarage, united with the p. curacy of Little Driffield, in the diocese of York. Value, £240. Patron, the Archbishop of York.—The sub-district contains the parishes of Driffield, Ruston-Parva, Skerne, and parts of Nafferton and Hutton-Cranswick. Acres, 20, 927. Pop., 7, 787. Houses, 1, 696. The district comprehends also the sub-district of Foston, containing the parishes of Foston-on-the-Wolds, North Frodingham, Harpham, Lowthorpe, parts of Beeford, Nafferton, and Hutton-Cranswick, and the extra-parochial tract of Little Kelk; the sub-district of Bainton, containing the parishes of Bainton, Watton, Middleton, North Dalton, Kirkburn, Wetwang, Garton-on-the-Wolds, and part of Kilnwick; and the sub-district of Langtoft, containing the parishes of Langtoft, Kilham, Foxholes, Weaverthorpe, Helperthorpe, Cowlan, Sledmere-with-Croom, and part of Wharram-Percy. Acres, 105, 114. Poor-rates in 1862, £6, 784. Pop. in 1841, 16, 828; in 1861, 19, 226. Houses, 3, 959. Marriages in 1860, 156; births, 717, -of which 70 were illegitimate; deaths, 372, -of which 159 were at ages under 5 years, and 12 at ages above 85. Marriages in the ten years 1851-60, 1, 479; births, 6, 620; deaths, 3, 694. The places of worship in 1851 were 30 of the Church of England, with 5, 473 sittings; 4 of Independents, with 730 s.; 3 of Baptists, with 610 s.; 29 of Wesleyan Methodists, with 4, 424 s.; and 21 of Primitive Methodists, with 2, 678 s. The schools were 27 public day schools, with 1, 727 scholars; 41 private day schools, with 1, 029 s.; and 36 Sunday schools, with 2, 325 s.


(John Marius Wilson, Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales (1870-72))

Linked entities:
Feature Description: "a town, a parish, a sub-district, and a district"   (ADL Feature Type: "cities")
Administrative units: Driffield CP       Great Driffield AP/CP       Driffield SubD       Driffield PLU/RegD       Yorkshire AncC
Place names: DRIFFELDA     |     DRIFFIELD
Place: Driffield

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