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White's History, Gazetteer & Directory of Essex ~ 1848

Submitted and Transcribed by Essex Villages


STISTED, a pleasant village on the northern acclivity of the vale of the Blackwater, 3 miles E. by N. of Braintree, has in its parish 911 inhabitants, and 2970 acres of land, in some parts low and in others hilly, with corresponding varieties of soil, and a good proportion of woodland. O. S. Onley, Esq., is lord of the manor and owner of a great part of the soil. He resides at Stisted Hall, a large and handsome mansion, built in 1826-7, on the site of the ancient manor house, in a finely wooded park of about 100 acres, rising gradually from the river Blackwater. The entrance front has a large and elegant Ionic portico, and the entire mansion is finished in the improved style of modern architecture.

Before the Norman Conquest, the lordship of Stisted was given to the monks of Christchurch, Canterbury, who held it till the dissolution. In 1549, it was purchased by Sir Thos. Wiseman, and in 1685, it was sold to Wm. Lingwood, Esq., who left it to his third wife. The latter died in 1719, and bequeathed the manor to John Savill, Esq., who left it to his brother. One of the two co-heiresses of the latter carried it in marriage to the Rev. Charles Onley, from whom the present owner is descended.

The manor of Rayne Hatch and Boultwoods, in the northern part of the parish belongs to Clopton's Hospital, at Bury St. Edmund's, and about 50 acres of the farm, bearing the former name, are in Braintree parish. Sir J. B. Pechell, Mr J. F. Baines, Mr. Isaac King, and several smaller owners, have estates in the parish, mostly freehold. Peckstones, a farm of about 40a., belongs to the Free School at Earl's Colne.

The Church (All Saint's,) is an ancient structure, but the chancel was restored by the rector some years ago. In 1844, O. S. Onley, Esq., rebuilt the tower, and placed in it a new peal of six bells. In the chancel are five lancet windows, enriched with stained glass given by Mr. Onley. The nave is separated from the chancel by Norman arches, and its restoration is in contemplation.

The rectory, valued in K.B. at ?22, and in 1831 at ?532, is in the patronage of the Archbishop of Canterbury, and incumbency of the Rev. Chas. Forster, B. D., who has 157a of glebe, and a handsome residence, built in 1839, when the tithes were commuted. Here is a small Independent Chapel, built in 1835.

This parish participates in the Free School at Earl's Colne, and the poor have ?12 a year out of the Stisted Hall estate, left by the Rev. Chas Onley, about 1802, for distribution in coals. Mr. Onley and the rector support two small schools for poor children.

Ardley Benjamin, saddler

Beckwith John, church clerk

Cawston Robt. Plumber and glazier

Carter Mrs Caroline

Comber Wm. Esq. Stisted Cottage

Forster Rev. Chas., B. D. Rectory

Houlton Augst. Cooper and schoolr.

May Misses My. and Eliz., Covenbrook Hall

Messent Henry, vict. Dukes Head

Onley Onley Savill, Esq. Stisted Hall

Pallant Philip, police officer

Simpson Miss M. Henhams

Stebbing Chas. vict. Black Lion

Tillott John, land agent, Hall

Warren Ths. Cs. & Jph. Broom mkrs


Baines John Fuller, Boultwoods

Baker Jonathan, Kentish Farm

Bridge Francis, Brookes

King Newton, Jenkins

May Wm. (and maltster,) Gowers

Rankin Alfred, Rayne Hatch

Rayner Wm., Miles Farm

Simpson Wm., Henhams

Stammers Sarah, Mill Farm

Walford Jas. (& brickmkr.) Bay Tree


Ely Charles

Messent Hy.

Stebbing Chas.


Alliston James

Kemp John


Corder George

Rankin Richd.

Watts Thos.

Dressmakers &c.

Candler My. and Harriet

Rankin Eliza


Bickmore Jph.

Jeggo Wm.


Chamberlain Stu.

Shave John


Candler Hannah (drpr. & china &c. dealer)

Hawkes Peter

Kemp John

Warren Thos.


Carr Marla

Houlton Augst.

Houlton Eliz.

Letters from Braintree



STISTED (or Stistead) is a parish on the banks of the Blackwater, 3 miles east-north-east from Braintree station on a branch of the London and North Eastern railway, 4 south from Halstead, 4 west from Coggeshall and 45 from London, in the Maldon division of the county, Hinckford hundred, petty sessional division of South Hinckford (Braintree bench), Braintree rural district, Braintree and Dunmow joint county court district, rural deanery of Braintree, archdeaconry of Colchester and Chelmsford diocese. All Saints' church is an edifice of flint and stone in the Norman, Early English and Decorated styles, consisting of chancel with vestry, clerestoried nave of four bays, aisles, north and south porches and octagonal shingled spire containing 6 bells: the chancel is Early English: the nave is divided from the aisles on either side by an arcade supported on round columns of large size: in the south aisle is a piscina: in the chancel is a mural monument to Mary, wife of the Rev, Samuel Jackson, rector of Stisted in 1742, and on the north side a mural brass to Elizabeth, ob. 1584, daughter of John Glasscock, gent. of Roxewell, and wife of John Wyseman, gent.: there are five stained windows, inserted as a memorial to the late Onley Savill-Onley esq. d. 1890, and a new organ was given at the same time by his family: the tower was rebuilt by Onley Savill-Onley esq. in 1844, when also the chancel was renovated, and the Decorated nave restored by the Rev. Charles Foster B.D. rector from 1838, at a cost of £2,000: there are about 300 sittings: a lynch gate was erected in 1878 and a piece of ground was subsequently given by the late Onley Savill-Onley esq. for the enlargement of the churchyard. The register dates from the year 1538. The living is a rectory, net yearly value £550, with glebe and residence, in the gift of the Archbishop of Canterbury, and held since 1930 by the Rev. Charles Stuart Donald M.A. of Keble College, Oxford. There is a Congregational chapel, erected in 1835, seating 200 persons: an Institute, supported by subscriptions, and a Parish room near the church. In 1822, the Rev. Charles Onley left a sum of £400 invested in Consols, and in 1890 the late Onley Savill-Onley esq. left a sum of £100; the interest of these moneys is distributed yearly to the poor in coals by the Parish Council. In 1046 Godwin, the great Earl of Kent, and Wifgith, widow of a noble Saxon, named Elfwin, gave the lordship of Stisted, with that of Little Coggeshall, to the monks of Christchurch in Canterbury. It passed from them to Odo, Bishop of Baieux, but was, however, recovered by the monks at the great trial of Pinenden Heath, although it was not applied to its original design and intention until 1106. The monks continued in possession until 1539, when it passed to Henry VIII. who in 1545 granted it to Sir Richard Rich. Stisted Hall, the seat of Andrew Richard Motion esq. J.P. is a fine Georgian mansion of white brick, standing in a park of 150 acres; it was erected in 1823, about 300yards west of the site of the old hall. The principal landowners are William McMillan esq. and George D. Fairhead esq. The soil is loam and clay; subsoil, clay and gravel. The chief crops are wheat, beans, peas and barley. The area is 3,024 acres of land and 11 of water; the population in 1931 was 611.

TUMBLER GREEN is 1 mile north-east; WOOLNER GREEN, 1 mile north-west.

Post, T. & T. E. D. Office (available for calls to places within a limited distance). Letters from Braintree, nearest M. O. office


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