Descriptive Gazetteer Entry for ASTON

ASTON, a parish and a district in Warwick. The parish partly lies within Birmingham on the E, partly spreads adjacent. It is traversed by Ryknield-street, the river Tame, the Fazeley canal, and the Northwestern, the Tamworth, the Oxford, and the Bristol railways. It contains the sub-post offices of Aston-street, Ashted-row, Aston-Park, and Deritend, each about 1½ mile distant from Birmingham head office. It comprises the hamlets of Deritend, Bordesley, and Duddeston-cum-Nechells; the manor of Aston, and the hamlets of Witton, Erdington, Little Bromwich, Saltley and Washwood, Castle-Bromwich, and Water-Orton. The hamlets of Deritend and Bordesley form one of the borough wards of Birmingham; the hamlet of Duddeston-cum-Nechells forms another ward; and the manor and the other hamlets are suburban or rural. Acres within the borough, 2,626; without the borough, 11,251. Real property of Aston manor, £53,188; of the suburban or rural hamlets, £43,452; of the entire parish, £276,514. Pop. in 1821, 19,189; in 1841, 45,718; in 1861, 94,995. Houses, 19,256. The manor belonged to the Saxon Earls of Mercia; was given, at the Conquest, to William Fitz-Ausculf; and passed to the Pagenels, the Erdingtons, and the Holts. The manor-house, Aston Hall, stands on a rising ground, at the end of a fine avenue, in the north-eastern outskirts of the town; is a noble edifice in the Tudor style, built in the time of James I. by Sir Thomas Holt; gave entertainment to Charles I. prior to the battle of Edge-Hill, and suffered a cannonade afterwards from the parliamentarian forces; and was, for some years, the residence of the late James Watt, son of the famous engineer. Most of a beautiful park which surrounded it has been aligned for streets, and let on building-leases; and a tract of about 43 acres immediately around the hall was sold, in 1857, to a public company, for £35,000, with the view of being made free to the inhabitants of Birmingham. The hall itself was included in the sale, and designed to be used for a permanent exhibition of manufactures and works of art; and was inangurated, in 1858, by Queen Victoria. The parish church stands 300 yards E of the hall; is an interesting edifice in varieties of English, from Edward II. to Henry VII., with fine tower and spire; suffered great change and mutilation in 1790; and contains four altar tombs, some fine antique stone seats, a carved church-yard cross of early English date, and beautiful windows of stained glass. The living is a vicarage in the diocese of Worcester. Value, £1,600.* Patrons, Trustees. The chapelries of Ward-end, Ashted, Castle-Bromwich, Bordesley, (two are here,) Aston-Brook, Deritend, Erdington, Duddeston, Nechells, Lozells, Saltley, Water-Orton, St. Lawrence, and Sparkbrooke are separate charges. There are chapels for Independents, Baptists, Wesleyans, and others: public schools, an alms-house with £88 a year, and other charities £334.

The district of Aston comprehends the subdistrict of Deritend, containing the hamlets of Deritend and Bordesley; the subdistrict of Duddeston, conterminate with the hamlet of Duddeston-cum-Nechells; the subdistrict of Erdington, containing the other parts of Aston parish; and the subdistrict of Sutton-Coldfield, containing the parishes of Sutton-Coldfield, Curdworth, and Wishaw. Poor-rates in 1866, £9,822. Pop, in 1841, 50,977; in 1861, 100,522. Houses, 20,415. Marriages in 1866, 951; births, 5,224,-of which 185 were illegitimate; deaths, 2,493 of which 1,326 were at ages under 5 years, and 32 at ages above 85. Marriages in the ten years 1851-60, 7,635; births, 32,988; deaths, 17,585. The places on worship in 1851 were 17 of the Church of England, with 11,520 sittings; 7 of Independents, with 1,765 s.; 3 of Baptists, with 1,817 s.; 11 of Wesleyan Methodists, with 2,901 s.; 1 of Primitive Methodists, with 90 s.; 1 of Wesleyan Reformers, with 150 s.; 1 of the Catholic and Apostolic church, with 300 s.; 5 of Roman Catholics, with 1,070 s.; and 1 undefined, sittings not reported. The schools were 28 public day schools, with 3,300 scholars; 118 private day schools, with 2,553 s.; 31 Sunday schools, with 5,483 s.; and 1 evening school for adults, with 25 s. The workhouse is in Erdington.

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

Linked entities:
Feature Description: "a parish and a district"   (ADL Feature Type: "countries, 4th order divisions")
Administrative units: Aston CP/AP       Aston PLU/RegD       Warwickshire AncC
Place: Aston

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