History of Weeley
St Andrew's Church, Weeley.
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History of Weeley >> White's Directory 1848
White's Directory of Essex 1848
WEELEY, or Wheeley, is a pleasant village, chiefly in one street, on an acclivity west of a rivulet, which separates it from Thorp-le-Soken, 7 miles West of Walton-on-the-Naze, and 11 miles East by South of Colchester.
Its parish has now about 700 inhabitants, and 2170 acres of land, and several scattered houses, on and near the Heath, where there were large military Barracks in the early part of the present century, but they were removed after the peace of 1815.
In old records, the manor is variously called Wilei, Wigley, Wilege, and Wyleigh. Earl Godwin held it in the Confessor's reign, and at the Conquest it was given to Hamo Dapifer. It afterwards passed to the Cromwell and Darcy families; and after the death of Thomas Darcy, Earl Rivers, etc., in 1639, it was sold to Wm. Weeley, Esq., of London, ancestor of John Weeley, Esq., a minor, the present lord of the manor. But a great part of the soil belongs to Sir J.R. Rowley, Bart., the Hon. Col. Onslow, John Cardinall, Esq., F. Smythies, Esq., and several small owners. Most of the land and buildings are copyhold, subject to heriots, etc.
The old Hall was pulled down in 1847. A small cattle market, held every Friday, was established in the village in 1844.
The Church (St. Andrew,) stands on a pleasant eminence near the site of the Hall, and has an embattled tower built of remarkably large bricks, and containing two bells. The interior is neat, and has a very handsome oak pulpit given by the late Samuel Weeley, Esq.
The rectory, valued in K.B. at £12, and in 1831 at £384, is in the patronage of Brazenoze College, Oxford, and incumbency of the Rev. T. W. Mercer, M.A., who has 8A. of glebe, and a good residence in the Elizabethan style, erected in 1834. The tithes were commuted in 1836 for £580 per annum.
The National School was built by Archdeacon Jefferson, a former rector, in 1810, and was endowed by his widow in 1824 with £9.4s. out of the rectory, being the annual amount of the land tax, which he had redeemed.
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