Descriptive Gazetteer Entry for RETFORD (East)

RETFORD (East), a town, a parish, a sub-district, and a district, in Notts. The town stands on the river Idle, the Chesterfield canal, and the Great Northern railway, at the intersection of the Manchester, Sheffield, and Lincolnshire railway, 18½ miles N N W of Newark; was known, at Domesday, as Redeford; took that name from a ford over the Idle, reddishly turbid after heavy rains; was the scene of a battle, between Edwin and Ethelred, in 617; became a place of some consequence before the time of Edward I.; is a borough by prescription; sent two members to parliament from 1315 till 1330; resigned its franchise, on account of poverty, till 1571; has sent two members since 1571 till the present time; underwent vast extension of its parliamentary boundaries in 1830, so as to include the entire hundred of Bassetlaw; has municipal boundaries conterminate only with its own parish; is governed, under the new act, by a mayor, 4aldermen, and 12 councillors; is a seat of quarter-sessions, petty sessions, county courts, and a polling-place; presents a well-built appearance, with a spacious market-place, and beautiful approaches; and has a head post-office, ‡ a railway station with telegraph, three banking offices, three chief inns, a town hall, a police station, a five arched bridge, a church, four dissenting chapels, a literary institution, a news room, a national school, an endowed grammar school, two suites of alms-houses with £90 and £31 a year, and other charities £53. The town hall, with corn and butter markets, and with shambles, was built in 1867, at a cost of about £7,000; and is in the Italian renaissance style, with Mansard roofs, and a singularly constructed tower. The church is ancient, of different periods; has suffered curtailment of its original portions; was thoroughly restored, and partly rebuilt, in 1855; and consists of nave, aisles, transept, and chancel, with pinnacled tower. One of the dissenting chapels was originally a theatre, built in 1789; and became a chapel in 1843. The grammar school was founded by Edward VI.; was rebuilt in 1857, at a cost of £10, 285; and has an endowed income of about £240. A weekly market is held on Saturday; fairs are held on 23 March, the Thursday after 11 June, the last Thursday of July, 2 Oct., and the second Thursday of Dec.; and there are in the town, or in its immediate neighbourhood, several corn and paper mills. Acres of the municipal borough, or the parish, 130. Corporation income, about £1, 147. Real property, £11, 332; of which £450 are in gas-works. Pop. in 1851, 2, 943; in 1861, 2, 982. Houses, 648. Electors of the parliamentary borough in 1833, 2, 312; in 1863, 2, 537. Amount of property and income tax charged in 1863, £1 7, 239. Pop. in 1851, 46,054; in 1861. 47, 330. Houses, 10, 362.

The parish, though conterminate with the municipal borough, includes the hamlet of Chapelgate. The living is a vicarage in the diocese of Lincoln. Value, £160.* Patron, Sir R. Sutton, Bart. The sub-district excludes Chapelgate hamlet, and includes the parishes of West Retford, Babworth, Ordsall, Eaton, Gamston, Elksley, Grove, Treswell, Rampton, and Headon-with-Upton, and the chapelry of Cottam. Acres, 23, 607. Pop. in 1851, 7, 406; in 1861, 8, 157. Houses, 1, 762. The district comprehends also the sub-district of Tuxford, containing the parishes of Tuxford, East Markham, West Markham, Bevercoates, West Drayton, Bothamsall, Haughton, Normanton-upon-Trent, Fledborough, Ragnall, Dunham, Laneham, Stokeham, East Drayton, Darlton, and Askham, and the township of Marnham; the sub-district of Clarborough, containing the parishes of Clarborough, Sturton, Littleborough, North Leverton, Habblesthorpe, and Sutton-cum-Lound, the townships of Barnby-Moor, Ranskill, Torworth, and South Leverton, and the hamlet of Chapelgate; and the sub-district of Gringley, containing the parishes of Gringley-on-the-Hill, Everton, Scrooby, Mattersey, Clayworth, North Wheatley, and South Wheatley. Acres of the district, 86, 797. Poor-rates in 1863, £9, 320. Pop. in 1851, 22, 758; in 1861, 22, 677. Houses, 5,036. Marriages in 1863, 149; births, 767, of which 72 were illegitimate; deaths, 402, of which 132 were at ages under 5 years, and 22 at ages above 85. Marriages in the ten years1851-60, 1, 572; births, 7, 368; deaths, 4, 344. The places of worship, in 1851, were 43 of the Church of England, with 10, 496 sittings; 4 of Independents, with880 s.; 3 of Baptists, with 470 s.; 27 of Wesleyans, with 4,032 s.; 4 of Primitive Methodists, with 415 s.; and 1of the Wesleyan Association, with 90 s. The schools were 29 public day schools, with 1,800 scholars; 44 private day schools, with 987 s.; 45 Sunday schools, with 3, 185 s.; and 1 evening school for adults, with 13 s. The workhouse is in Clarborough; and, at the census of 1861, had 83 inmates.

(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: East Retford CP/AP       East Retford SubD       East Retford PLU/RegD       Nottinghamshire AncC
Place names: EAST RETFORD     |     REDEFORD     |     RETFORD     |     RETFORD EAST
Place: East Retford

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