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A narrative on Wressle

written by Dr. Percy

WRESSLE, a parish-town in the township of Wressle-with-Loftsome, Holme-Beacon division of Harthill; 4 miles from Howden, 6.5 from Selby, 13 from Market-Weighton, 17 from York. --Pop. including Loftsome and Newsham-with-Brind, 360. The Church is a vicarage, dedicated to St. John of Beverley, in the deanry of Harthill, value, +5L. 13s. 9d. p.r. 90L. 17s. 1d. Patron, the Earl of Egremont.

Wressle Castle was built and fortified by Thomas Percy, Earl of Worcester, in the time of Richard II. and which Leland considers as one of the most superb houses north of the Trent. It was a quadrangular building with five towers, one at each corner, and a fifth over the gateway. In one of these towers Leland says "ther was a study called Paradise, wher was a closet in the middle of eight squares latised aboute, and at the top of every square was a desk ledgid to set books on, coffers within them, and this semid as joined hard to the toppe of the closette, and by pulling one or al wolde cum dawn briste highte in rabbitts, and serve for desks to lay boukes on." This castle was in preservation till the civil wars broke out in 1641.

On the decline of the King's party, the northern counties experienced some respite, but in 1648, attempts being expected from the royalists, fresh troops were sent into the north, and Major Lambton ordered a detachment of 60 men to garrison the castle; and while the Earl of Northumberland was exerting all his influence above, to save this noble seat of his ancestors, a committee at York sent a sudden order to dismantle it, which was done before the Earl could receive notice of their design. After this, it does not appear to have been long used as the residence of its Lords. It was occupied as a farm house, till 1796, when it was accidentally burnt to the ground, leaving little more than the shell of this princely mansion. It is at present the property of the Earl of Egremont.
--Camden. --Dr. Percy.

Linked toRobert "Old Wells" WELLS

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