History of Debden
print published 1834
History of Debden >> White's Directory 1848
White's Directory of Essex 1848
DEBDEN, a scattered village including Debden-Green, Smith-Green, Amberden-End, etc., is pleasantly situated 4 miles South South East of Saffron Walden, and nearly 2½ miles East of Newport Railway Station. It has a fair for toys, etc., on June 1st.
Its parish is picturesquely broken into hill and dale, and contains 979 inhabitants, 4404 acres of land, which belonged to Ralph Peverell at the Domesday Survey, but was afterwards divided into several manors and estates.
Debden Hall, a large and handsome mansion in an extensive and well-wooded park, is the seat of, and gives name to a manor, belonging to Sir Francis Vincent, Bart. This manor was granted by Henry VIII. as parcel of the Duchy of Lancaster, to Thomas Lord Audley from whose only daughter it descended to her son, Thomas, Baron Howard de Walden and Earl of Suffolk. In 1715, it was sold, with the manor of Deynes, to Richard Chiswell, Esq., whose grandson erected the present mansion in 1791, from a design by R. Holland.
The daughter and heiress of the latter married Sir Francis Vincent, Bart., of Stoke d'Abernon, Surrey, whose baronetcy was created in 1620. The present baronet was born in 1803, and succeeded to the family estates in 1809.
The Hall stands on rising ground, above a fine sheet of water; and the south-eastern front, built in the Grecian style, and ornamented with stately pillars, has a good effect. The park is agreeably diversified, and from shady walks on the higher grounds, fine views are presented over the surrounding country.
Amberden Hall, now a farmhouse, two miles South South East of the church, gives name to a manor belonging to John Farran, Esq., and had formerly a chapel and a large park. It anciently formed part or the possessions of Ely Abbey and was afterwards held by the Berners, Fynderne, Dacre, Stonehouse, and other families,
Other estates in the parish, called Weldbarnes, Tendring, Mole Hall, etc., belong to the Rev. J. Collin, the Rev. F. Hall, and several smaller owners.
St Mary the Virgin and All Saints' Church, Debden.
© Copyright John Salmon contributor to the Geograph Project and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence
The Church (St. Mary,) is a handsome Gothic structure within the park, shaded by a fine grove. It was originally built in the cathedral form, with two aisles, a nave, and chancel, and the tower in the centre. The tower fell down many years ago, and demolished the chancel, which was rebuilt in its original style, with elegant and appropriate ornaments.
The building owes much of its neatness to the late R.M.T. Chiswell, Esq., who erected several family monuments, richly ornamented in the pointed-arch style, in an octangular chapel at the east end. He also gave the font, an elegant piece of workmanship in Coade's artificial stone, ornamented with statues.
The rectory, valued in K.B. at £34, and in 1831 at £880, is in the patronage of Sir Francis Vincent, Bart., and incumbency of the Rev. W.J. Totton, M.A., who has a large and handsome residence, and 50A. of glebe. The tithes were commuted in 1842 for £1010 per annum.
The poor of Debden have £6 a year from Measant's Charity, and a yearly rent-charge of 20s., left by William Bendlowe, out of land at Bardfield, now belonging to Mr. Fitch. The rector distributes £3 yearly among three poor labourers, as charged on the tithes by Dr. Thomas Carter, in 1697.
The overseers have long held a house and cottage, and 3A. of land, given by unknown donors, and now let for £15.5s. a year, which is carried to the poor rates.
The Almshouses, which were given, in 1774, by Mr. Chiswell, in lieu of others left by Sir John Stonehouse, consist of eight tenements, partly occupied by paupers, and partly let by the overseers to labourers, at low rents.
Bathurst's Charity to the poor of Debden consists of a house at Bucklersbury, now let for £78 per annum, and said to have been given by a Mr. Bathurst, merchant of London, whose will cannot be found, as appears by the last trust deed, dated 1810. The rector and Sir F. Vincent are the trustees, and the latter pays £18 yearly in consideration of £600 said to have been retained by his family from unapplied income; but he does not hold himself legally responsible for this payment.
More than half of the income of this charity is applied by the rector in educating and clothing poor children; and the rest is distributed among the aged and infirm poor parishioners.
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