Includes the two townships of Whatton and Aslacton, which keep their poor separately, and contain together 677 inhabitants, and about 3400 acres of land, in the vale of the Smite, where that river is augmented by the Wipling.
Whatton village and township is on the south side of the Smite, and on the Grantham road, 3 miles E. by S. of Bingham. It was anciently called Watone, from its watery situation, the flood water lying; longer here than in many other places. It contains 1800 acres, and was enclosed in the year 1790, when 36A. IR. 18P. were allotted to the vicar, and 120A. 3R 5P to the impropriator, G. S. Foljambe, Esq., in lieu of tithes. The latter sold his allotment to Thos. Hall, Esq. of Nottingham, who now owns 800 acres here, having; purchased several farms of the lord of the manor, the Earl of Chesterfield, who still holds 320 acres, and the remainder belongs to several smaller freeholders. After the Conquest, this manor was of the fee of Gilbert de Gand. It was lung held by the Whattons, New-marches, and Gascoignes, the latter of whom sold it to the father of the first Earl of Chesterfield; but some of the lands were successively held by the Whalleys, Gelsthorps, and others. The church, which Adelina de Whatton gave to Welbeck abbey, is dedicated to St. John of Beverley, has a handsome tower and spire with five bells, and contains many ancient monuments of the Whatton, Newmarch, Cranmer, and other families. The whole was repaired and new pewed in 1807, at the cost of £1700, except the chancel, which is in a very decayed state, and the duty of repairing which belongs to the owner of the impropriate lands. The vicarage is valued in the King’s books at £5. 6s. 8d. and has now 92 acres of glebe, including its allotments at the enclosure of Whatton and Aslacton. G. S. Foljambe, Esq. is the patron, and the Rev. H. N. Bousfield, B. A. is the incumbent. A Methodist chapel was built here in 1825. The charities consist of the Poor’s close, (one acre,) the tenant of which distributes three tons of coals yearly; and £12 left by John Clayter, in 1738, and now in the bank at 21/2 per cent.
Asi.acton is a pleasant village and township on the N. side of the Smite, one mile N. by W. of W nation, and 2| miles E. of Bingham. It contains 289 inhabitants, and 1600 acres of land, most of which is occupied by the owners, except the Abbey farm, (200 acres,) which belongs to King’s-Cliffe school, in Northamptonshire, and the following allotments made at the enclosure in 1780, viz. 65 acres to Alex. Heaton and William Bilbie, Esq. in lieu of the impropriated tithes, and 44 acres to the vicar of Whatton, in lieu of the vicarial tithes. It consists of as many manors as it has owners, and was formerly a chapelry, but its chapel was in ruins many years ago, and a writer in the 62d vol. of the Gentleman’s Magazine, says, “part of the walls still remain; these are visible under a modern built house of brick and tile, .and the chapel itself is now a common alehouse.” The inhabitants now use Whatton church, and pay one-third of the church rate. After the Conquest, Aslacton was of the fees of Walter D’Agincourt, Ilbert de Lacy, and Gilbert de Gand, and a portion of it was long held by a family of its own name, and from them passed .to the Cranmers, of whom was Archbishop Cranmer, the great church reformer and martyr, who was horn herein 1499, and became in 1532t the first .Protestant archbishop of Canterbury. The life of this .eminent prelate is the subject of a volume, therefore a brief notice of his last sufferings, under the persecution of Queen Mary, must here suffice. “After condemnation, he was induced to sign a recantation; but having nobly denied his error, and withdrawn that confession, he was condemned to the stake, at which he suffered on the 21st of March, 1556 To this he was brought without any official notice, though he had reason to expect it; and when tied to it was obliged to listen to all the charges and aspersions of Dr. Cole; but Cranmer boldly replied, ‘I believe every word and sentence taught by our Saviour Christ, his apostles, and the prophets of the Old and New Testament; but as to the pope, 1 refuse him as Christ’s enemy, or Antichrist, with all his false doctrines.’ So great was his sorrow for his recantation, and so determined was his spirit at the last hour, that he calmly held his right hand in the flames till it dropt off, saying, ‘this hand has offended;’ and this he was enabled to, as his executioners had taken care to keep up a slow fire, in order that he should suffer the utmost pain of his punishment, as a proof of their regard for Christian mercies.— It has been stated that after his whole body had been reduced to ashes, his heart was found entire, and untouched’ by the fire, which by some of the bystanders was considered as an argument
in favour of his hearty love of the truth; whilst others looked upon it as a proof of the heretical obduracy of that vital part, which would not yield even to the” warm argument of a blazing Catholic fire!”
The site of the manor house, which was the seat of Archbishop Cranmer and many of his ancestors, is now occupied by the farm-house of Mr. Win. Green. Near it may still be distinctly traced several moats, islands, and other remains of the pleasure grounds, and at a short distance is a raised walk which leads to Orston, and is yet called Cranmers’ walk. At the west end, on crossing a moat, the visitor may ascend a square mount of considerable elevation, and from thence have an extensive prospect. Here are also two other mounts, said to have been raised by the archbishop, but they have been greatly reduced by some of the former owners of the estate. On one of them, tradition says the archbishop “was wont to sit and survey the surrounding country, and listen to the tunable hells of Whatton.” in 1816 John Marriott left 20s yearly out of his farm at Aslacton, to be distributed in bread at Christmas.
Commercial and Residential
Blyton James shoemaker
Bousfield Rev. H.Newham, B.A.
Caunt William saddler
Dove Alice vict. & shopkpr
Greascley John gardener
Heathcote Mrs. Ann
Hooper William butcher
Mason William blacksmith
Oliver Thomas, gardener
Parnham Thomas victualler and gamekeeper
Parnham William tailor
Pell William joiner, and beer house
Riddish Julin baker and, flour dealer
Sharrack Robert shoemaker
Talbott Fras. Veterinary surgeon
Tyler William joiner
Upton John corn miller
Farmers and Yeomen
George Moss, carrier to Nottingham, Wed. & Sat.
William Tutbury to Newark, Wed., and to Nottingham,
Sat., 5 morn.
Commercial and Residential
Bates James bricklayer & shopkeeper
Dawn John tailor
Franks Thomas shoemaker
Freeman Thomas land and bldg surveyor
Freeman William painter and shopkeeper
Hand John blacksmith
Keyworth, Robert maltster
Marriott John schoolmaster
Morley George tailor
Morley William baker
Oliver William corn miller
Payling Robert butcher
Pepper John shoemaker and beer house
Porter Mr. William
Smith Richard shoemaker
Thornton Thomas vict. Grey Hound
Wilson Richard wheelwright.
Farmers and Yeomen.
Chettle J. Grim Edge
Clifton Edward Lane Ends
Transcribed by GR Redford in 2013