Worcester is a city in the county of Worcestershire.

Trade: corn, hops, cider, and perry; very fine porcelain is largely manufactured; glove-making and leather-dyeing are extensively carried on; some lace-making is done; and there are a very large vinegar-work, a British wine-making establishment, a distillery, breweries, horse-hair manufactories, a large iron foundry, saw-mills, roperies, boat and barge-building, yards, engineering establishments, and three coach factories.

Markets: Wednesdays and Saturdays; a cattle-market on every Saturday; and fairs on the third Monday of Jan., Feb., March, and April, the second Monday of May and July, the first Tuesday of June and Aug., 19 Sept., 8 Oct., the first Monday of Nov., and the second Friday of Dec.

Parishes in the city of Worcester

Historical Descriptions

The Imperial Gazetteer of England & Wales 1870

WORCESTER-popularly Wooster-a city and a district in Worcestershire, and a diocese partly also in Warwickshire, Herefordshire, and Oxfordshire. The city stands on Ryknield-street, and on the river Severn, at a convergence of railways, and at the terminus of the Worcester and Birmingham canal, 29 miles N of Gloucester, and 111 by road, but 138 by railway, WNW of London; has railway communication with all parts of the kingdom; and commands seaward navigation by the Severn, and extensive inland navigation by both river and canal.

History.—The city dates from the times of the ancient Britons, and was called by them Caer-Guoraugon. It was occupied by the Romans; may possibly have been their Branogena; and has yielded many Roman relics. It became the Wigaerne, or Warrior’s Lodge, of the Saxons; and was designated by them Wegenacestre, Weorganeceaster, or Weogornaceaster,-a name after wards corrupted into Worcester. It was taken by Penda of Mercia in 628; was made the capital of the Saxon Wiccast; was desolated or destroyed by the Danes; was rebuilt, in 894, by Ethelred; was burnt, in 1041, by Hardicanute, for resisting danegelt; was given, by William the Conqueror, to Urso D’Abitot; was then an important place with a mint: was defended, in 1088, by Bishop Wolstan against Bernard Newmarch and Roger de Lacy; acquired from D’Abitot, about 1090, a wall with six gates, and a strong castle, few remains of which now exist; was burnt in 1113 and 1133; was visited, in 1129, by Henry I., to keep Christmas; was visited, in 1139, by Stephen, and plundered, in the same year, by the Empress Maud’s forces; was, in the next year, seized by these forces, and burnt by Stephen; was assailed again, in 1151, by Stephen; was taken, in 1157, by Henry II.; was the meeting-place of a parliament in 1159; was burnt again in 1202; was repeatedly taken and retaken in the time of King John; was visited by that king in 1207 and 1214, and , at his own request, became his burial-place; was visited, in 1218, 1232, 1234, and 1241, by Henry III.; was taken, in 1263, by the Barons, who next year brought the king a prisoner to it; was made, in 1265, the headquarters of Prince Edward, whence he marched to the battlefield of Evesham; and was visited by that prince, as Edward I., in ten different years,-in one of which he met Llewelyn at it, in another kept Christmas in it, in another held a parliament at it, in another was accompanied by Queen Eleanor. The city was plundered, in 1401, by Owen Glendower, but rescued by Henry IV.; was visited by that king again in 1407,-by Henry VI., in 1459,-by Edward IV., in 1471; was inundated by the Severn in 1489; was occupied by Henry VII. in 1485; was more famous than any other English town for cloth-making in the time of Henry VIII.; was visited by Elizabeth in 1575 and 1585; was ravaged by the plague in 1637; and was fortified by the royalists in 1642, taken by the parliamentarians in 1643, reoccupied by the royalists in 1644, visited by the King himself in 1645, and retaken by the parliamentarians, after a siege of 4 months, in 1646. Charles II., at the head of the Scotch army, entered it in 1651; fortified it: was crowned in it; was besieged in it by Cromwell; was defeated, on 3 Sept., in the desperate battle of Worcester, fought at Perry Wood; and made a narrow personal escape after his defeat. The city, from its great loyalty to the two Charleses, took the appellation of the “faithful city;” and it was the first corporate town in which a mayor proclaimed Charles II. at the Restoration. James II. visited it in 1687; George III. in 1788; the Prince Regent in 1807. William of Worcester, William Bottoner, Lord Somers, Judge Berkeley, the Romish writer Dr. Smith, the theologians Bristow and W. Smith, the alchemist Kelly, the antiquary Dr. Thomas, the architect White, the quaker Bradley, and the scholar W. Price were natives.

Site and Structure.—The city occupies a gentle slope on the eastern bank of the Severn; is sheltered, on the E, by a-well-wooded hill; lies open, on all other sides, to the champaign of the valley; and presents a general appearance of neatness and prosperity. The principal streets. are wide, regular, and handsome; the market place is extremely convenient; the houses, for the most part, are built of red brick; and the suburbs comprise a multitude of good recent cottages and villas. Several spacious warehouse s or manufactories, of ornamental character, were erected about 1866. The City and County bank, in the modern Roman style, was built in 1861. A handsome stone bridge, of 5 elliptical arches and 270 feet long, connects the city with the suburb of St. John-Bedwardine; was erected in 1781, at a cost of nearly £30,000; and was improved in 1841, by a widening of it on each side to a total width of 33 feet, and by a widening of the contiguous quays to give it a good effect. An elegant iron viaduct, of two spans, takes across the Malvern and Hereford railway; and was erected about 1862. Extensive alterations, in weirs, locks, and other details, were recently made to improve the local navigation of the Severn. The market house was rebuilt in 1851; and has an elevated roof, open at the sides. The flesh and fish market stands at the end of the market house; and is a large and well-arranged structure, with open-sided roof. The cattle market is at the Butts, covers a space of more than 4 acres, and was opened in 1838. The hop market comprises offices on the basement, and large warehouses in the superstructure. The corn exchange measures interiorly 70 feet by 60½; and was erected in 1848-9, at a cost of £5,000. The music hall was originally designed to be the corn exchange; was built in the same year, at at a cost of £7,000; has a pillared front; measures interiorly 97 feet in length, 40 feet in width, and 40 feet in height; and is lighted from a dome. The public reading and news-rooms occupy premises formerly belonging to the mechanics’ institution. The temperance hall is used for public lectures. The theatre was built in 1780. A racquet court is in Sansome-walk. An arboretum, of large extent and much beauty, adjoining Sansome-walk, was formed by a private company in 1850; and was open to the public every Thursday; but was sold in 1866, for about £11,000, to be occupied by eight new streets. The guildhall was built in 1723, at a cost of £3,730; and is a brick structure, in the Italian style, adorned with statues. The shire hall was built in 1835, at a cost of £35,000; is in the Ionic style, with a handsome hexa-style portico; and includes an apartment 90 feet by 40, used occasionally for public meetings and for balls. The judges, lodgings are a large handsome house at the back of the shire hall. The city jail occupied the site of an ancient grey friary; was built in 1824, at a cost of £12,578; had capacity for 40 male and 10 female prisoners; and was taken down in 1868. The county jail was built in 1809, at a cost of £19,000; was enlarged and improved in 1840, at a cost of about £50,000; was reconstructed, on the separate system, in 1856-60, at a cost of £24,000; and has capacity for 258 male and 62 female prisoners. The workhouse stands on Tallow-hill, was built in 1794, and has accominodation for 294 paupers.
The Cathedral.—A church, on the site of the cathedral, was built by King Offac in 983; reconstructions of that church, in early Norman architecture, and still partly retained, were built by Bishop Wolstan in 1084; the main body of the cathedral, as it now stands, was dedicated by Bishop Sylvester, in the presence of Henry III., in 1218; additions and alterations, in decorated and later English architecture, were made at subsequent periods; and very extensive restorations, rendered necessary by the weather-worn surface of the exterior and the decays of many parts of the interior, were effected in a series of years up to 1868. These restorations had been carried on for a considerable time before the end of 1864; and they then required still about £14,000 for completion. The pile, in its ground plan, comprises a nave of nine bays, a main transept of two bays, a central tower, a choir of four bays, a choir-transept of two bays, a presbytery of one bay, a Lady chapel of four bays, cloisters of seven panes, a chapter-house, and a N porch. The nave is 180 feet long, 78 feet wide, and 66 feet high; the main transept is 128 feet long, 32 feet wide, and 66 feet high; the central tower is of two stages, crowned by octagonal turrets, and 200 feet high; the choir is 120 feet long, 74 feet wide, and 68 feet high; the choir-transept is 120 feet long and 25 feet wide; the Lady chapel is 60 feet long; the cloisters are 125 feet long and 18 feet wide; the chapter-house is 55 feet in diameter and 45 feet high; a Norman crypt extends under the choir and the choir-transept, and is 45 feet long and 15 feet wide; and the entire pile is 514 feet long. The architecture ranges from early Norman to late perpendicular; and the general appearance, particularly as seen in distance from the Malvern hills, is very beautiful. A chief monument is an altar-tomb of King John, with a life-size crowned figure of the king; and other noticeable monuments are altar-tombs, effigies, or other memorials of Prince Arthur, Lady De Clifford, Sir J. Beauchamp, Sir H. Ellis, Sir G. Ryce, Sir W. Harcourt, Judge Lyttleton, Maud Longspée, Mrs.Digby, and Bishops Johnson, Hough, Giffard, Oswald, Wolstan, Sylvester, Hemenhale, and Thorn-borough. The present episcopal palace is Hartlebury Castle, near Kidderminster. The old episcopal palace stands near the cathedral on a height overlooking the Severn; and is now called the deanery. The cloisters are now inhabited by the cathedral dignitaries. King Edgar’s tower, built toward the end of the time of Edward III., stands in College-green, on the S side of the cathedral; and is the finest relic of old times in the city.

Ecclesiastical Affairs.—The livings in the city, or connected with it, are the rectories of St. Albans, All Saints, St. Andrew, St. Clement, St. Helen, St. Martin, St. Nicholas, St. Swithin, and Bedwardine-St. Michael, the vicarages of St. Peter, St. Paul, and Bedwardine-St. John, and the p. curacy of Holy Trinity. The two Bedwardines are separately noticed; and St. Peter is united with Whittington. Value of St. Albans, £74; of All Saints, £150; of St. Andrew, £165; of St. Clement, £150; of St. Helen, £120; of St. Martin, £378; of St. Nicholas, £260; of St. S within , £170; of St. Peter-with-Whittington, £300; of Holy Trinity, not reported; of St. Paul, £150. Patron of St. Albans, St. Helen, St. Nicholas, and St. Paul, the Bishop of W.; of All Saints, the Lord Chancellor; of the others, the Dean and Chapter of W. St. Albans’ church is very ancient, and was recently restored. All Saints was rebuilt in 1742. St. Andrew’s is of the 11th century, greatly altered; and has a tower 90 feet high, with a beautiful slender spire of 1751, rising to a finial height of 245 feet. St Clement’s was built in 1823, at a cost of nearly £6,000; and is in the Norman style. St. Helen’s is very old. St. Martin’s is a brick structure of 1772. St. Nicholas’ is in the Doric style; and was improved in 1867, at a cost of £2,000. St. Swithin’s was rebuilt in 1736; St. Peter’s, in 1838. Holy Trinity church was built in 1865, at a cost of £7,000; and is in the decorated English style. St. Paul’s was built in 1837. St. George’s belongs to Claines parish; and was built in 1830, at a cost of £5,500. St. Oswald’s belongs to St. Oswald’s hospital, and was built in 1830. The Watermen’s occupies the site of the original St. Clement’s, and was erected in memory of the Rev. John Davis. Christ church is Presbyterian; and was built in 1866, at a cost of £5,000. The Independent chapel dates from 1662; and was rebuilt and enlarged in 1859, at a cost of £6,000. One chapel of Lady Huntingdon’s connexion is in Bridport; and another in Lowesmoor was built in 1860. One Baptist chapel was built in 1796; another in 1864, the latter at a cost of £4,000. The Quakers’ chapel was built in 1701. One Wesleyan chapelis small, another very spacious; and the latter was built in 1796. There are also Primitive Methodist, U. free Methodist, and Brethren’s chapels. The Roman Catholic chapel occupies the site of an old one, visited by James I.; and was built in 1828.-A black friary stood near Foregate; a grey friary, near St. Martin’s gate; a nunnery, at White Ladies; and a commandery of Knights Hospitallers was founded in the 11th century, and went to the Morrisons and to Cardinal Wolsey.

Schools and Institutions.—The cathedral grammar- school was founded by Henry VIII. for 40 poor scholars; is held in the quondam refectory of the cathedral clois- ters; and has two exhibitions at Baliol college, Oxford. Queen Elizabeth’s grammar-school was founded in 1561; had Lord Somers and Hudibras Butler for pupils; and was rebuilt, in the Tudor style, at White Ladies, in 1868. Lloyd’s charity-school was founded and endowed in 1713, by Bishop Lloyd; and educates and clothes 20 boys and 20 girls. The blue-coat school maintains 10 boys, who are educated in Queen Elizabeth’s school. There are eight national schools, three parochial, two British, four denominational, and one industrial. There are also a diocesan training school, and a school of design. The City library was built in 1830, and contains upwards of 13,000 volumes. The City and County library was established in 1836. The Worcestershire museum was built in 1836; and is a two-storied edifice, in the Corinthian style. The infirmary was built in 1770, at a cost of £6,085; and has, at different times, been much enlarged and improved. The ophthalmic institution was rebuilt in 1866. The dispensary was established in 1822. The orphan asylum was built in 1869, at a cost of more than £6,000. St. Oswald’s hospital was originally founded for lepers; was rebuilt about 1630: supports 16 men and 12 women; and has an endowed income of £1,681. Ten other alms-house hospitals support or aid about 120 persons, and have aggregately more than £1,000 a year from endowment. There are other benevolent institutions and a number of miscellaneous ones; and the total of endowed charities, including schools, is about £4,381.

Trade.—The city has a head post-office, three receiving post-offices, two r. stations, with telegraph offices, four banking offices, and five chief inns; is a seat of assizes, quarter sessions, and county-courts, a polling place and a place of election; and publishes four weekly newspapers. Markets are held on Wednesdays and Saturdays; a cattle-market on every Saturday; and fairs on the third Monday of Jan., Feb., March, and April, the second Monday of May and July, the first Tuesday of June and Aug., 19 Sept., 8 Oct., the first Monday of Nov., and the second Friday of Dec. Considerable commerce is carried on in corn, hops, cider, and perry; very fine porcelain is largely manufactured; glove-making and leather-dyeing are extensively carried on; some lace-making is done; and there are a very large vinegar-work, a British wine-making establishment, a distillery, breweries, horse-hair manufactories, a large iron foundry, saw-mills, roperies, boat and barge-building, yards, engineering establishments, and three coach factories. Musical festivals are held; races are run; and agricultural and horticultural shows are maintained.

The city was chartered by Henry I.; is governed, under the new act, by a mayor, 12 aldermen, and 36 councillors: and, since the time of Edward I., has sent two members to parliament. The corporation revenue is about £5,550. The police force, in 1864, comprised 31 men, at an annual cost of £2,295. The crimes committed, in 1864, were 100; the persons apprehended, 76; the known depredators and suspected persons at large, 437; the houses of bad character, 89. The borough boundaries are the same parliamentarily as municipally; and they comprehend the parishes of All Saints, St. Alban, St. Andrew, St. Clement, St. Helen, St. Nicholas, St. Swithin, and Bedwardine St. Michael, the extra-parochial places of Block house and College Precincts, and parts of the parishes of St. Martin, St. Peter, Bedwardine-St. John, and Claines. Real property of All Saints, St. Alban, St. Andrew, St. Clement, St. Helen, St. Martin, St. Nicholas, St. Peter, St. Swithin, and Claines, and of the extra-parochial tract of College Precincts in 1860, £117,842; of which £2,760 were in gasworks. Electors of the city in 1833, 2,366; in 1863, 2,731. Pop. in 1851, 27,528; in 1861, 31,227. Houses, 6,330.

The District.—The registration district or poor-law union differs slightly in boundaries from the city, but is mainly identical with it; and it is divided into three subdistricts, W, N, and S. Acres, 6,699. Poor rates in 1863, £14,297. Pop. in 1851, 27,677; in 1861, 30,969. Houses, 6,267. Marriages in 1866, 327; births, 1,118, of which 76 were illegitimate; deaths, 822, of which 364 were at ages under 5 years, and 12 at ages above 85. Marriages in the ten years 1851-60, 2,845; births, 8,709; deaths, 6,779. The places of worship, in 1851, were 18 of the Church of England , with 8,390 sittings; 1 of Independents, with 700 s.; 1 of Baptists, with 696 s.; 1 of Quakers, with 360 s.; 3 of Wesleyans, with 1,362 s.; 1 of Primitive Methodists, with 250 s.; 2 of Lady Huntingdon’s Connexion, with 1,465; 1 undefined, with 128 s.; 1 of Roman Catholics, with 429 s.; and 1 of Latter Day Saints, with 200 attendants. The schools were 16 public day-schools, with 2,196 scholars; 50 private day-schools, with 1,077 s.; and 18 Sunday schools, with 3,129 s.

The Diocese.—The bishopric is said to have been founded about 160. Among the bishops have been Wolstan, Dunstan, and Oswald, who were canonized; Roger, famous for courage; Cantilupe, installed in the presence of three crowned heads; Giffard, Lord Chancellor; Cobham, called the good clerk; Bourchier, who became cardinal; Julius de Medici, who became Pope Clement VII.; Latimer, the martyr; Prideaux the famous Oxford lecturer; Fleetwood who effected the escape of Prince Charles; Sandeys and Whitgift, who became archbishops; Stillingfleet, Hough, and Hurd. One of the dignitaries became a cardinal, and three became archbishops. The cathedral establishment includes the bishop, the dean, four canons, two archdeacons, twenty-four honorary canons, a chancellor, and four minor canons. The income of the bishop is £5,000, and that of each of the archdeacons is £200. The diocese comprehends all Worcestershire except part of Burford deanery, all Warwickshire, part of Mathon-St. James chapelry in Herefordshire, and part of Shenington parish in Oxfordshire; and is divided into the archdeaconries of Worcester and Coventry. Acres, 1,037,451. Pop. in 1861, 857,775. Houses, 177,050. The archdeaconry of Worcester comprises the deanery of Alcester, with 26 livings; the d. of Blockley, with 5; the d. of Bredon, with 8; the d. of Droitwich, with 26; the d. of Evesham, with 14; the d. of Feckenham, with 13; the d. of Kidderminster, with 45; the d. of North Kineton, with 23; the d. of South Kineton, with 18; the d. of Pershore, with 22; the d. of Powick, with 14; the d. of Upton, with 12; the d. of Warwick, with 18; the d. of East Worcester, with 21; and the d. of West Worcester, with 22. The archdeaconry of Coventry comprises the deanery of Atherstone, with 14 livings; the d. of Baginton, with 9; the d. of Birmingham, with 30; the d. of Coleshill, with 9; the d. of Coventry, with 15; the d. of Dassett-Magna, with 11; the d. of Dunchurch, with 11; the d. of Leamington, with 13; the d. of Monks-Kirby, with 13; the d. of Polesworth, with 11; the d. of Rugby, with 10; the d. of Solihull, with 12; the d. of Southam, with 11; and the d. of Sutton-Coldfield, with 18.

Source: The Imperial Gazetteer of England & Wales [Wilson, John M]. A. Fullarton & Co. N. d. c. [1870-72].

Pigot & Co.’s Royal National and Commercial Directory 1842

Worcester is a city and county of itself, having exclusive jurisdiction; 111 miles N.W. by W. from London, 26 N.E. from Hereford, the like distance S.W. from Birmingham, 27 N. from Gloucester, 32 W.S.W. from Warwick, 47 S. from Stafford, 48 S.S.E. from Shrewsbury, 57 N.W. from Oxford, and three miles and a half from Spetchley station on the Birmingham and Gloucester railway. This ancient city is pleasantly situated at the base and on the acclivity of ground rising gently from the eastern bank of the fine river Severn, which is here crossed by a handsome stone bridge of five arches, erected in 1780, at an expense of nearly £30,000. Under the name of Caer Guorangon, it is enumerated by Nennius in his catalogue of cities belonging to the Britons. On the expulsion of that people by the Romans, it was erected into a fortress by the praetor Ostorias. By the Saxons it was called Wigorna Ceaster, afterwards Wigra Cester, and Wigorn Ceastre, which was subsequently contracted by the Normans to Wircester – and to this succeeded the present appellation and mode of spelling ‘Worcester.’ Soon after the conquest a royal castle was erected here; and in 1113 the greater part of the city was destroyed by fire, which nearly consumed the cathedral, erected by Sexulf, bishop of Mercia; in 1189 it sustained a similar calamity, when the cathedral also suffered, but was speedily repaired; but in 1233 the city again fell a prey to the flames, a great portion of which was destroyed, and its venerable church greatly damaged. In the war of the Roses, Worcester was seized for Henry VII; and several of the partisans of Richard were made prisoners here, and beheaded at the High Cross; and a fine of five hundred marks was paid to King Henry for the redemption of the city. In the parliamentary war Worcester was the first city that openly declared in favour of the king; and during this protracted contest the inhabitants were frequently engaged in sustaining sieges, and giving open battle to the parliamentarians: and it was in this town that Cromwell obtained his final victory over the adherents of Charles II, when he entered the royal fort by storm, put all the garrison to the sword, and gained possession of the city. The king, attended only by Lord Wilmot, narrowly escaped by the back entrance of the house in which he was quartered, at the moment Colonel Cobbett was entering at the front to make him prisoner, and, mounting a horse prepared for the occasion, rode to Boscobel, where he lay concealed till he found means of escaping to France.

Worcester is considered one of the most ancient and respectable cities in England; and there are but few reckoned superior to it in extent and population, and a less number in beauty. The principal part of the town occupies the most elevated ground from the north to the south. The Severn, which flows southerly, is often rapid in its stream; but the navigation is safe, commodious, and of greater length than that of any other river in the kingdom, and is of vast importance to the commercial inhabitants of Worcester and the adjacent neighbourhood. The streets of the city are handsome and regular; it is well supplied with water, and lighted with gas: indeed, for beauty, cleanliness, respectability, and as affording all the comforts of life, unsparingly, no visiter will be disappointed on his arrival at the city of Worcester, and but few will leave it without regret. The bridge over the river (before mentioned) is elegant, consisting of five handsome arches; the ends are returned with very neat balustrades, leading to two smaller arches under the bridge, for foot passengers, or towing paths; at the west end of the bridge are two ornamental toll-houses: altogether this erection has a grand and imposing effect, when viewed from the town side – the Malvern hills rising majestically in the perspective. The guild or town hall, which stands nearly in the centre of the High-street, must attract admiration from every stranger. This elegant edifice is built of brick, richly embellished with stone ornaments and many handsome figures. On each side of the grand entrance, in niches, are the statues of Kings Charles I and II, and over the doorway is also one of Queen Anne, all of which are finely executed, and the entire structure has a rich display. The shire hall, a very handsome stone edifice, in the Ionic order, was erected in 1835, at an expense of about £33,000. The entrance is by a noble portico, standing nearly one hundred feet back from the street, the fine pediment being supported by six symmetrical columns in front. The County Court (which is appropriated, likewise, to public meetings, &c.) is approached through a large vestibule. Besides the courts of justice, there are various requisite apartments, and the library; and behind the hall there is a very commodious brick building, called the Judge’s Lodgings, which presents a fine front to Sansom-walk. Exactly facing the guildhall is the entrance to the market, which is built of stone, with a large arched opening in the centre, supported by handsome Tuscan columns; on each side are two smaller arched entrances, the whole surmounted by a fine ornamented and panelled square pediment: the interior is arranged with every convenience; the vegetable market is conveniently situated behind. The hop market is a large space, nearly surrounded by ranges of capacious and regular built warehouses; and the corn market is in an extensive area. The city gaol was formerly a house of grey friars, and is the most entire of any religious house in Worcester; it was granted to the citizens by Henry VIII. The new county gaol is a large erection, and is situate just without the boundaries of the city, near the race course; the interior arrangements are judicious and commodious; it cost £19,000 building. The theatre is a spacious edifice, and first took the title of a royal one in the year 1805, when Betty, the young Roscius, was engaged to play in it eight nights for one thousand guineas. The musical festival of the choirs of Worcester, Hereford and Gloucester are held in the cathedral here triennially, and are attended by numerous and fashionable audiences: and races take place in August and November, near the margin of the Severn, by which river the course is bounded on one side: the grand stand is handsome and commodious.

Worcester was first constituted a city by Wulfhere, the sixth king of Mercia, and additional privileges were granted by Offa and Edgar. The inhabitants were first incorporated by Henry I, whose charter was confirmed by many succeeding monarchs, and, lastly, remodelled by James I, in 1621, who erected the city into a county of itself, under the designation of ‘the City and County of the City of Worcester.’ This charter received several additions and alterations, and was finally superseded by the municipal act, passed in 1835, for the reform of all corporations in England and Wales: by this enactment the city is divided into five wards, and the government vest in a mayor, twelve aldermen and thirty-six common councillors, with the usual assistant officers. The mayor, recorder and aldermen are justices of the peace within the city and county of the city. The corporation hold quarterly courts of session, for the trial of all offences not capital; and a court of record every Monday, for the recovery of debts to any amount. The assizes and general quarter sessions, and the election of knights of the shire to represent the western division of the county, are held here. The city first exercised the elective franchise in the 23rd year of Edward I, since which time it has regularly sent two members to parliament: those returned at the last general election (1841,) are Joseph Bailey, Esq., and Sir Thomas Wilde. Worcester confers the inferior title of marquess on the Duke of Beaufort. Four respectable journals are issued from the press of this city weekly; their titles, days of publication, and their publishers, will be found under the head ‘Newspapers.’

The trade and manufactures of Worcester principally consist of porcelain and fine china, which was first established in it about the year 1751. The ware has been brought to the greatest state of perfection, both in point of quality and beauty of painting and designs, and now equals any foreign china. Their Majesties George III George IV, and many other royal personages, have honoured the manufactories with their inspection. The glove trade, likewise, is very extensive here, and, from the beauty and quality of the article, is in great repute at the foreign market: this manufacture, it is estimated, furnishes employment to between seven and eight thousand persons in the city and its vicinity, besides numbers of the industrious classes in the adjacent parishes. Worcester is considered the most extensive hop market in the kingdom, and the average of that article sold here annually is 20,000 pockets. A distillery and a rectifying house are establishments of magnitude, as is also one for the manufacture of British wines and vinegar. The coal, corn, malt, timber and slate trades are of considerable importance; and there are iron foundries, tanneries and roperies, and several persons engaged in the currying and leather-dressing business. The Worcester and Birmingham canal, the direction of which is north-east for twenty miles, in the counties of Worcester and Warwick, forms a communication between Birmingham and the Severn, and affords the greatest facilities in forwarding goods from Manchester and the north of England, through Worcester, to Bristol and all parts of the west; besides which the railway before-mentioned is another, and more rapid, medium of transit. Several extensive dry warehouses are erected close to the canal, for housing goods; and there is a powerful steam-engine for supplying the canal with water from the river Severn.

The structures, appropriated to the performance of divine worship are very numerous, under the establishment, as well as for various other religious denominations: of these the venerable cathedral takes precedence. The original church was founded as early as the year 680, and was then dedicated to St. Peter; but in the year 983 St. Oswald, the great patron of the monks, completed the building of a new and more stately edifice, in the church-yard of the neglected St. Peter’s, which he dedicated to the Virgin Mary, and furnished with no less that twenty-eight altars. In 1084 Bishop Wulstan laid the foundation of the present cathedral, which, in subsequent periods, has been enlarged, repaired, and many parts rebuilt and altered by other prelates. The interior is extremely beautiful: its full length, from east to west, is three hundred and ninety-five feet, and, as well as the exterior, presents a great variety of architecture. The noble tower rises from the great cross aisle, and is two hundred feet in height, containing a fine set of bells. Several interesting monuments, some of which are elegant specimens of sculpture, adorn the interior. The present bishop is the Right Rev. Henry Peppys, D.D. The other churches are St. Peter’s and St. John’s, both vicarages; the former in the incumbency of the Rev. George Lardner Foxton, and the latter in that of the Rev. Townsend Forester; St. Michael’s, the Rev. Wm. Henry Weston; St. Andrew’s, the Rev. T. Wylde; St. Swithin’s, the Rev. Thomas Howard Shirley; St. Martin’s, the Rev. Allen Wheeler; St. Clement’s, the Rev. John Davies; and St. Paul’s, the Rev. Frank Hewson, – all rectories, in the gift of the dean and chapter. St. Helen’s, St. Alban’s, and St. Nicholas’s are also rectories, in the presentation of the Bishop of Worcester: the rector of St. Helen’s and St. Alban’s is the Rev. Donald Cameron; and the incumbent of St. Nicholas’ is the Rev. Robert Clifton. All Saints’, the benefice of which is in the gift of the Crown, has for its rector the Rev. Richard Francis Davis. Excepting St. Andrew’s, which is a considerable ornament to the city, these churches, posses but few pretensions to architectural beauty. The other places of worship are, chapels for Baptists, independents, Presbyterians, Wesleyan Methodists, Lady Huntingdon’s connexion, Roman catholics, and friends’ meeting-house.

The charitable establishments of Worcester are very numerous, comprising many schools, open for all conditions and sects; hospitals for the aged and infirm of both sexes; alms-houses, an infirmary, a dispensary, house of industry, female asylum, &c. The general infirmary is large, and very pleasantly situated – commanding a fine prospect over the race-course and river, which are close adjoining the town: it was erected in the year 1770. The house of industry is also a fine building, situated on an eminence, near to the canal, east of the city. Among the religious and scientific institutions for which this city is so justly noted, is a branch of the society for propagating Christian knowledge, established in 1818; an agricultural society, formed in 1816; two medical societies, the first established in 1796, and the other in 1815 – to the latter is attached a well selected library; and the natural history society, founded in 1833, for the diffusion of general knowledge. The building for the use of this association, erected in 1835-6, is a noble structure and a beautiful specimen of modern architecture: it contains a museum, the richest in the county; a spacious lecture hall, and other apartments. Near the cathedral is King Edgar’s tower, a very ancient erection and well worth of notice. It derives its appellation from the statue of that king and those of his two queens, Elfleda and Elfrida, being placed on its eastern front. This tower was formerly attached to a castle, the ancient seat of the Huiccian viceroys, and is the only portion of the remaining edifice: it contains some lofty rooms, including a kitchen, together with a winding staircase: the windows are of large dimensions, and the walls are ribbed and very thick. These venerable remains have an appearance of stately grandeur. The markets are held on Wednesdays and Saturdays, and the fairs on the third Mondays in January, February and March, the second Monday on April; fourth Mondays in May, June, and July; first Tuesday in August, Sept. 19, the first Monday in November, and second Friday in December. The population of the city of Worcester and its immediate suburbs, as taken by Mr. Young, in 1779, amounted to 11,001 inhabitants; in 1801, according to the government returns, (including St. Michael Bedwardine parish, with the College precincts,) to 12,012; in 1811, to 14,477; in 1821, to 18,632; in 1831, to 19,336; and, in 1841, to 27,140.

Source: Pigot & Co.’s Royal National and Commercial Directory and Topography of the Counties of Warwickshire, Leicestershire, Rutlandshire, Northamptonshire, Staffordshire and Worcestershire 1841/1842

Worcestershire Delineated C. and J. Greenwood 1822

Worcester – a city and county of itself, 26 miles from Birmingham, 26 from Gloucester, 30 from Hereford, and 111 from London, lying in latitude 52° 9’ N. and 2° 0’ W. longitude. It stands upon the eastern bank of the river Severn, and in circumference about 4 miles. It is a place of great antiquity, yet the principal streets are spacious, well built, and well paved, and, in point of general appearance, is not to be equalled by any place out of the metropolis. The cathedral has a grand and venerable appearance, and notwithstanding its style of architecture, is very diversified, from being built at different periods, yet it is a noble specimen of simple Gothic. It is built in the form of a double cross, the proportions of its exterior being 514 feet in length, 78 in breadth, and 68 in height, with an elegant tower rising from its centre to the altitude of 200 feet, ornamented at the corners by four lofty pinnacles, and battlements of light open work. The principal manufacture is that of gloves, which employs in its various branches nearly one-fourth of the population. Here are likewise several manufactures of porcelain, in which they greatly excel.

Worcester carries on a considerable trade in the article of hops, the average number of pockets sold yearly being upwards of 20,000. The hop market is situated at the S. end of the Foregate-street, and is governed by guardians chosen out of every parish in the city, the profits arising from which are applied towards the maintenance of the poor in the house of industry.

The Worcester and Birmingham canal, began in 1791, was made navigable December 4,1815, and some very extensive warehouses have been erected at Lowesmoor and Diglis for the housing of goods. A large iron foundry has been establishes on the banks of the canal, under the firm of the Worcester Iron Foundry; and on the opposite side, near Lowesmoor, are the works of the Worcester Gas-light Company.

Among the public buildings in this city, the Guildhall is most worthy of remark. It was built in the year 1723, from a design of Mr. White, a native of Worcester: the hall is spacious and lofty, to the west of which are two courts of justice, wherein the sessions and assizes for the city and county are held. Over the hall is the council-chamber, a most elegant apartment, with adjoining rooms for tea and cards, &c. at the public assemblies. Likewise tow commodious rooms for the city and county grand juries.
Opposite to the town-hall is the new market place, erected by the corporation at an expense of £5050. The principal market days are on Wednesday and Saturdays. Here is also a commodious theatre, a public subscription library, a general infirmary, and a house of industry, with nine endowed hospitals, and six public schools.

The corporation consists of a mayor, recorder, sheriff, six aldermen (who are justice of the peace), twenty-four common councilmen, and forty-eight assistants, and returns two members to Parliament, chosen by the citizens, admitted to their freedom by birth or servitude, or by redemption; the sheriff is the returning officer.

Here are nine parish churches within the city, and two without, viz. All Saints, situate near the bottom of Broad-street; a rectory; the Rev. F. Davis, incumbent; patron, the King. – St. Albans, situate the N.W. corner of Fish-street; a rectory; the Rev. Thomas Bedford, incumbent; patron, Bishop of Worcester. – St. Andrew’s, situate on the North side of Copenhagen-street; a vicarage; the Rev. William Faulkner, incumbent; patrons, the Dean and Chapter. – St. Clement’s, situate near the bridge; a rectory; the Rev. John Davies, incumbent; patrons, the Dean and Chapter. – St. Helen’s, situate in the High-street; a rectory; Rev. Thomas Bedford, incumbent; patron, Bishop of Worcester. – St. John’s, in Bedwardine, situate at St. John’s; a vicarage; Rev. Rev. James Meakin, incumbent; patron, the Dean and Chapter. – St. Martin’s, situate at the N.W. angle of the corn market; a rectory; Rev. Digby Smith, incumbent; patrons, the Dean and Chapter. – St. Michael’s, in Bedwardine, situate the N.E. corner of the cathedral; a rectory; Rev. Thomas Clark, incumbent; patron, the King, by lapse. – St. Nicholas, situate at the cross; a rectory; Rev. Robert Clifton, incumbent; patron, the Bishop of Worcester. – St. Peter the Great, situate near Diglis; a vicarage; Rev. C. Copner, incumbent; patrons, the Dean and Chapter. – St. Swithin, situate at the W. end of Mealcheapen-street; Rev. T. H. Shirley, incumbent; patrons, the Dean and Chapter.
Besides the parochial churches, here are seven chapels and meeting-houses for different sectaries.

Parochial Account of the City and Suburbs of Worcester

Three several essays have been made towards an accurate enumeration of the inhabitants of this city and its suburbs; the first was made in 1563, 5th of Eliz. under Bishop Sandys, when the families in the eleven parishes, exclusive of the cathedral precincts, amounted to 1025.

In 1646, during the siege of Worcester, the inhabitants within the city were 7176; gentlemen in the garrison, soldiers, and trained bands, about 2007; total, 9183.
In the Plan of the city, published by Mr. G. Young, an accurate and ingenious surveyor, in 1779, he has stated the number of houses in the city and suburbs to have been 2449; and the number of inhabitants, 13,104.1 In that calculation, St. Clement’s parish is stated to have had, within the bounds of the city and suburbs, 141 houses, and 671 inhabitants. Each of those totals have varied in this parish more than in any of the others ; first, from its extent within the limits of the city being the most considerable of any, except St. Peter’s ; and, secondly, from its suburbs, including the superior advantage of a variety of eligible situations whereon to build, in an improving neighbourhood about the Terrace, Hinton-lane, and on Henwick’s hill, west of the Severn, insomuch, that in the year 1790, the number of houses was increased to 199, and their inhabitants to 10072 The same progress of improvement having taken place proportionably in each of the other parishes, parts of which form the exterior or suburb of the city, we are thence warranted in supposing, that, at the present time, the number of houses in the city and suburbs of Worcester amounts to, at least, 2530, and their inhabitants to not less than 13,550. Instances of longevity in the natives and inhabitants of this city, by which its healthiness is proved, appear from its registers to be as numerous as in any of the great towns in England.

Source: Green, Valentine. The History and Antiquities of the City and Suburbs of Worcester. London, Printed for the Author by W. Bulmer and Co. 1796.


ParishHouses 1811Inhabitants 1811Houses 1821Inhabitants 1821
St. Alban’s4826360305
St. Clement’s18910302691464
St. Peter31215574622392
St. Swithin18910771881051
St. Martin37220314432524
St. Nicholas32520393812326
All Saints39822404132380
 St. Andrew29019123742159
St. Helen27614123221662

But if we include the tything of Whiston, the township of St. Johns, the parish of St. Michael, and those divisions that form part of Worcester, though not actually within the limits of the city, the whole population will be as follows, viz.

City of Worcester16,263
Township of St. John’s1161
Tything of Whiston1344
St. Michael’s657
College Precincts136
Block-house, extra parochial674
Total Population, 182120235

Source: Worcestershire Delineated: Being a Topographical Description of Each Parish, Chapelry, Hamlet, &c. In the County; with the distances and bearings from their respective market towns, &c. By C. and J. Greenwood. Printed by T. Bensley, Crane Court, Fleet Street, London, 1822.

Mayors of Worcester 1836 to 1905

1836-37 Christopher H. Hebb
1837-38 George Allies
1838-39 Richard Evans
1839-40 Thomas Chalk
1840-41 C. Augustus Helm
1841-42 Edward Evans
1842-43 John Lilly
1843-44 William Lewis
1845-46 Edward Lloyd (died)
1846 W. Lewis (elected)
1846-47 Fredk. Thos. Elgie
1847-48 Edward Webb
1848-49 Richard Padmore
1849-50 John Wheeley Lea
1850-51 W. S. P. Hughes
1851-52 Thomas Lucy
1852-53 Richard Padmore
1853-54 Charles Bedford
1854-55-6 John Goodwin
1856-57 James Weaver
1857-58 Josiah Stallard
1858-59 Thomas Rowley Hill
1859-60 William Haigh
1860-61 Joseph Wood
1861-62 Joseph Firkins
1862-63-4 Alexander C. Sherriff
1864-65 James Dyson Perrins
1865-66 Thomas Southall
1866-67 John Stallard
1867-68 William Webb
1868-69 Francis Woodward
1869-70 Richard E. Barnett
1870-71-2 Henry Willis
1872-73 Edward Wall
1873-74 H. G. Goldingham
1874-75 John Longmore
1875-76 Francis Woodward
1876-77 Moses Jones
1877-78 Francis Dingle
1878-79 Walter Holland
1879-80 John Noake
1880-81 T. S. Townshend
1881-82 Lieut.-Col. Wm. Stallard
1882-83 Frederick Corbett
1883-84 W. B. Williamson
1884-85 Joseph S. Wood
1885-86 Ambrose Wm. Knott
1886-87 Walter Holland
1887-88 Heber Caldicott
1888-89 Ernest Augustus Day
1889-90 R. Smith-Carrington
1890-91 W. R. Higgs
1891-92 Walter Holland
1892-93 Hon. A. Percy Allsopp, M.P.
1893-94 Geo. H. Williamson
1894-95 Hon. A. Percy Allsopp, M.P.
1895-96 Rt. Hon. Earl Beauchamp
1896-97 C. W. Dyson Perrins
1897-98 Albert Buck
1898-99 John Alfred Steward
1899-1900 John Millington
1900-1 John Alfred steward
1901-2 Walter Holland
1902-3 C. J. Whitehead
1903-4 John Samuel Cook
1904-5 Hubert A. Leicester

Source: Littlebury’s Directory of Worcester & District. Tenth Edition. Printed and Published by Littlebury & Company, The Worcester Press, Worcester. 1905.

Churches – Worcester Places of Worship Littleburys Worcester Directory 1905

All Saints’, All Hallows, Broad Street. – Rev. Benedict Arthure, M.A., Rector, Rev. G. A. Irving, M.A., Curate; W. W. Grundy and F J. Hall, Churchwardens; G. H. Hunt, Organist; H. T. Langford, Clerk and Sexton.

St. Alban’s, Fish Street. – United with St. Helen’s.

St. Andrew’s, Copenhagen Street. – Rev. Canon T. L. Claughton, M.A., Rector; G. Sanders and Albert Webb, Churchwardens; Richard Warren, Organist; John Jordan, Sexton.

St. Barnabas, Rainbow Hill. – Rev. William J. Worster, A.K.C., Vicar; E. Haywood and A. Usher, Churchwardens; C. A. Munn, Organist; J. Green, Verger.

St. Clement’s, Henwick Road. – Rev. Frederic Henry Richings, M.A., Rector; Rev. Thomas Davies, B.A., Assistant Curate; A. W. Knott and R. Morris, Churchwardens; W. G. Willoughby, Organist, Archibald Hardman, Clerk.

St. George’s, St. George’s Square. – Rev. Gerald M. Isaac, M.A., Vicar; Rev. Johnson Barker, M.A., and Rev. H. J. Chandos Burton, M.A., Assistant Curates; W. T. Curtler and J. A. McNaught, Churchwardens; C. H. Baker, Choirmaster; Percy S. Tyler, Organist; F. Marshall, Sexton.

St. Helen’s, High Street. – Rev. Charles Chaytor, M.A., Rector; W. Napper and F H. Plum, Churchwardens; George H. Smith, Organist; William Moore, Verger.

St. John-in-Bedwardine, St. John’s. – Rev. Canon Walter Raleigh Carr, M.A., Vicar; Rev. E. P. Rowland and Rev. C. R. Martyn, B.A., Assistant Curates; Albert Buck and W. Johnson, Churchwardens; George Street Chignell, F.C.O., Organist; Samuel J. Ranford, Parish Clerk.

St. Martin’s, London Road. – Rev. Robert Raikes Needham, M.A., Rector; Francis Barnitt, Churchwarden; F. Fielder, Organist and Choirmaster; W. G. Ross, Verger.

St. Martin’s Old Church, Old Corn Market (now joined with St. Swithin’s).

St. Mary Magdalene’s (Parish of The Tything), Sansome Walk. – Rev. Samuel Wallis Frost, Vicar; A. Randle and J. G. Armstrong, Churchwardens; Reginald Prosser, Organist; Chris. Fleet, Choirmaster; H. Pardoe, Verger.

St. Michael-in-Bedwardine, College Street. – Rev. Richard Thursfield, M.A.. Rector; C. Widdop and A. O. Mainwaring, Churchwardens; Henry Peach, Organist; W. Brook, Clerk.

St. Nicholas, The Cross. – Rev. G. F. Williams, M.A.. Rector; C. J. Whitehead and W. S. Carless, Churchwardens; Harry G. Bishop, Organist; Mrs. and F. Dyke, Sextons.

St. Oswald’s Hospital Chapel, Tything. – The Very Rev. the Dean of Worcester, Master; Rev. George F. Hooper, M.A., Chaplain; John Harvey Hooper, M.A., Steward.

St. Paul’s, St. Paul Street, Blockhouse. – Rev. Fredk. Wilkinson, Vicar; Rev. A. E. Holloway, Curate; Alfred Savage and George W. Glover, Churchwardens; J. Brook, Clerk.

St. Peter’s, Sidbury. – Rev. G. A. K. Simpson, M.A., Vicar; Rev. H. S. Chignell, B.A., and Rev. J. T. C. Davies, Curates; T. O. B. Norman and W. Bladon, Churchwardens; A. Neale, Organist; James Kite, Sexton.

St. Stephen’s, Barbourne. – Rev. Charles Ernest Hopton, M.A., Vicar; Rev. E. J. R. Lemon, M.A., Curate; W. Birch and A. Hill Parker, Churchwardens; Stanley James, Organist; G. L. Fowler, Clerk.

St. Swithin’s with Old St. Martin’s, Corn Market. – Rev. William Beattie Monahan, M.A., B.D., Rector; Rev. E. Stephens, Curate; H. B. Kenward and S. Branch, Churchwardens of St. Swithin’s; Francis Barnitt and T. Brown, Churchwardens of Old St. Martin’s; C. Lane, Organist.

Holy Trinity, Shrub Hill. – Rev. George F. Hough, M.A., Vicar; A. B. Rowe and E. L. Adlington, Churchwardens; William Arthur Parry, Organist and Choirmaster; Mrs. Gretton, Caretaker.

Waterman’s Church, Upper Quay. – District Church of St. Clement’s.

The Moors Mission Room – in connection with St. George’s Church.


Baptist Church, Sansome Walk. – Rev. Henry Wyatt, Pastor; Edgar Deacon, Organist.

Baptist Mission Chapels, Rainbow Hill, and Red Hill, London Road.

Congregational Church, Angel Place. – Rev. Arthur Hallack, M.A., Pastor; L. G. Winter, Organist.

Countess of Huntingdon’s Free Church, entrances from Bank Street and Birdport. –Rev. E. J. Boon, Minister; A. G. Lewis, Organist.

Presbyterian (Christ Church), Castle Street. – Rev. W. Wallace Duncan, M.A., Pastor; A. Milne, Session Clerk; D. McKelvie, Organist.

Primitive Methodist, St. Paul Street. – Rev. J. A. Taylor, Minister; Samuel Smallwood, Organist.

Plymouth Brethren Meeting Rooms, St. Nicholas Street, Bank Street, and Arboretum.

Religious Society of Friends’ Meeting House, Sansome Place.

Roman Catholic (St. George’s), Sansom Place. – Rev. Father Kernan, Rev. Father F. McShane, and Rev. Father F. New, Priests; Harry Burgess, Organist.

United Methodist Free Church (Zion), Great Park Street. – Rev. Arthur Barlow, Pastor; W. Alcock, Organist.

Wesleyan Chapels, Pump Street; Bromyard Road; St. John’s; and Ombersley Road. – Rev. Arthur Westcombe (Supertndt.), and Rev. G. Leonard White, Ministers; A. E. Woodhouse, Organist (Pump St.).

Mission Hall, Lowesmoor.

Mission Hall, Wyld’s Lane

Salvation Army Barracks, Lowesmoor.

Source: Littlebury’s Directory of Worcester & District. Tenth Edition. Printed and Published by Littlebury & Company, The Worcester Press, Worcester. 1905.

Worcester Newspapers and Periodicals 1905


Berrow’s Worcester Journal – printed and published by the proprietors, Berrow’s Worcester Journal Company, Ltd., every Friday afternoon for Saturday; price 1 ½d.; 8 pp.; 72 cols.; Conservative politics; established 1690: office, 43 High Street.
Worcester Daily Times – printed and published by the proprietors, Berrow’s Worcester Journal Company, Ltd., several editions daily; price ½d.; 4 pp.; 32 cols.; Conservative politics; office, 43 High Street.

Worcester Herald – printed and published by the Worcestershire Newspapers and General Printing Company, Ltd., every Friday evening for Saturday; price 2d.; 8 pp.; 72 cols.; Independent politics; established 1794; office, 72 High Street.

Worcestershire Advertiser and Agricultural Gazette – printed and published every Friday afternoon, with market editions on Saturday; price 1 ½d.; 8 pp.; 64 Cols.; neutral in politics; office, 44 High Street.

Worcestershire Chronicle – printed and published by the Worcestershire Newspapers and General Printing Company, Ltd., every Friday afternoon for Saturday; price 1d.; 8 pp.; 64 cols.; Liberal politics; established 1838; office, 72 High Street.

Worcestershire Echo – printed and published by the Worcestershire and General Printing Company Limited; several editions in the course of the day; price ½d. 4 pp.; 32 cols.; Liberal politics; office, 72 High Street.


Littlebury’s Directory (Tenth Edition) – Price 7/6 nett. This Book contains copious Official Information relating to the City and County of Worcester; complete Street and Alphabetical Directories of the City of Worcester and Towns of Malvern, Droitwich, and Pershore, together with an Alphabetical List of the Principal Residents in the Parishes and Villages within a radius of ten miles of the City; printed and published by Littlebury and Company, The Worcester Press, Worcester.

Littlebury’s Guide to Worcester, Malvern, Droitwich, and Neighbourhood, with numerous Illustrations; Eighth Edition recently published; price One Shilling; Office, The Worcester Press.

Littlebury’s West-Midland A B C Railway Guide and Route Book (Twenty-first Year of Publication) One Penny; printed and published monthly by Littlebury and Company, The Worcester Press.

Worcester A B C Railway Guide and Special Time Tables for the Principal Station’s in the Kingdom (twenty-fifth year of Publication) – Two pence. Printed and published monthly by Littlebury and Company; The Worcester Press.

Source: Littlebury’s Directory of Worcester & District. Tenth Edition. Printed and Published by Littlebury & Company, The Worcester Press, Worcester. 1905.

The Worcester Royal Porcelain Works Littleburys Directory 1905

Under various proprietors, the Worcester Royal Porcelain Works have existed for the past century and a half, but during no period of their history have they attained such perfection in the articles produced as at the present time. The Works were founded by Dr. Wall and a number of local gentry in 1751. Dr. Wall was a distinguished physician and a clever artist, and the productions of the establishment bore evidence to his taste, until his death in 1776. In 1783 the Works were purchased by Mr. Flight, of Hackney, for his sons. In 1788 King George III. paid a visit to the City, when he granted the patent which gave to Worcester the first “Royal Porcelain Works” in England. In 1793 Mr. Barr became associated with the Works, and, in connection with the former proprietors, succeeded in introducing into all their productions the expression of pure and refined taste. In 1786 a second Porcelain Manufactory was established in Worcester by Messrs. Chamberlain, which at once obtained a share of the popularity enjoyed by its competitor. Both factories were animated with the desire to produce first-class articles, and for many years the two may be said to have made by far the larger part of all the important porcelain manufactured and purchased in this kingdom.
Fortunate in being able to command the services of really able artists, and no less happy in the consciousness that their productions were duly appreciated, Messrs. Flight and Barr and the Messrs. Chamberlain made a large number of services for the Royal Family of England, and for many Continental Princes, in addition to those which were bought from them by the nobility and gentry of this country. In 1840 the two establishments were united in that of Messrs. Chamberlain, who, in their turn, were, in 1852, succeeded by Messrs. Kerr and Binns, under the title of W. H. Kerr and Co. Messrs. Kerr and Co. disposed of their business to the present Joint Stock Company in 1862. Mr. E. P. Evans is the present Managing Director of the Company.
The title of “Royal” not only belongs to the Worcester Works by Letters Patent, but is also due to them from another source, viz., that no manufactory in Europe, the result of mere private enterprise, has ever been so royally visited as that of Worcester.
The present proprietors have greatly extended the Establishment by the erection of new workshops, kilns, and warehouses, and the rebuilding of part of the old Manufactory, and the Works now afford employment to several hundred persons. Visitors have the opportunity of witnessing the various operations of China Manufacture in both the potting and decorating departments, guides being always in attendance. The Works are open to Visitors from 9.30 till 12.0 in the morning, and from 2.30 till 5.0 in the afternoon every day except Saturday, when they are closed at noon. A charge of sixpence is made, in return for which the visitor is supplied with an illustrated description of the Works. Whatever else the stranger may omit seeing, he ought not to be deterred from paying a visit to the Porcelain Works.
The Museum contains a collection of old and modern Worcester China dating frem the establishment of the Works in 1751 to the present time, and illustrating in a very interesting manner the history and progress of the manufacture.
In March, 1889, the old-established China Works of Messrs. George Grainger & Co. was acquired by the Company, thus re-uniting the manufacture of “Worcester China” under a single proprietary. In the present year (1905) the business of James Hadley and Sons, Limited, has also been acquired and taken over by the Company, who will continue the manufacture of the Art Pottery known as “Hadley Ware.”
Source: Littlebury’s Directory of Worcester & District. Tenth Edition. Printed and Published by Littlebury & Company, The Worcester Press, Worcester. 1905.

Castle Street, Worcester

A few yards nearer “The Cross” is the street now called “Castle Street,” but for long years known as “Salt Lane.” The conveyance of salt from Droitwich to Worcester had been carried on over a period dating back to pre-Christian days. The merchants, to avoid the toll payable if salt entered the City, made a road across the fields leading to the Severn, where salt was loaded on to the barges for exportation, hence the name – “Salt Lane.”
In this street are two notable buildings, The Infirmary and The Prison.

Source: Forgotten Worcester by Hubert A. Leicester. Ebenezer Baylis, The Trinity Press, Worcester. 1930.

Worcester County Prison

This prison was erected in 1809 for the incarceration of all prisoners from the County of Worcestershire, and completed in 1813 at a cost of £18,000.
Prior to that date all prisoners were lodged in what remained of the old castle in the grounds near the Cathedral.
To accommodate the City prisoners a Gaol was erected in Friar Street in 1824, on part of the site of the ancient Grey Friary. This prison was closed about 50 years since, and the present handsome Almshouses built by the Trustees of Laslett’s Charity.
From this time the City prisoners were accommodated at the County prison, until it was recently closed.

Source: Forgotten Worcester by Hubert A. Leicester. Ebenezer Baylis, The Trinity Press, Worcester. 1930.

Shewringe’s Hospital

The Six Houses on the East side of the Tything, nearly opposite the “George and Dragon” Inn, were erected and endowed in 1702 by Thomas Shewringe, Mayor of Worcester in 1682, for six poor widows or poor ancient maidens, one from each of the parishes of St. Helen, St. Andrew, St. Clement, All Saints, St. Swithin, and The Tything. The names of these parishes are carved on the window sills.
The income set aside for this Charity suffered similarly to that belonging to St. Oswald’s, but restitution was made by the aid of the Court of Exchequer in 1812.

Source: Forgotten Worcester by Hubert A. Leicester. Ebenezer Baylis, The Trinity Press, Worcester. 1930.


Online Directories

Worcester Bennett’s Business Directory for Worcestershire, 1914

Bentley’s Directory of Worcester 1840 – Archive.org

Directory Transcriptions

Worcester Lewis Worcestershire Directory 1820

Addenda Lewis Worcestershire Directory 1820

Worcester Street Directory 1905

Worcester Street & Road Directory 1905


Worcester Bankrupts 1820 to 1843

People from Worcester mentioned in the London Gazette:

Henry Frampton – Worcester Worcestershire – London Gazette April 1850

In the Matter of the Petition of Henry Frampton, now and for two years last past residing at No. 93, High-street, in the parish of Saint Helen, in the city of Worcester, and being a Tailor and Habitmaker, and for eight years previous thereto, residing at No. 11, Pump-street, in the same parish, Tailor and Habitmaker, an insolvent debtor. NOTICE is hereby given, that Benjamin Parham, Esq. Judge of the County Court of Worcestershire, at Worcester, acting in the matter of this Petition, will proceed to make a Final Order thereon, at the said Court, on the 8th day of May next, at ten o’clock in the forenoon precisely, unless cause be then and there shown to the contrary.

Sarah Dancocks – Worcester Worcestershire & Ledbury Herefordshire & Bristol, Kempley & Dymock Gloucestershire – London Gazette 1850

WHEREAS a Petition of Sarah Dancocks, at present and for eleven months or thereabouts last past, residing in Green Hill-terrace, Bath-road, in or near the city of Worcester, and being a Widow, and out of business and employment, previously staying at Dingwood-park, near the town of Ledbury, in the county of Hereford, previously staying in and near the city of Bristol, previously staying at the Stonehouse-farm, in the parish of Kempley, previously residing at Great Netherton Farm, in the parish of Dymock, both in the county of Gloucester, previously staying at Stonehouse-farm aforesaid, previously of South end-street, in the town of Ledbury aforesaid, previously of the Wool Pitts Farm House, near the said town of Ledbury, out of business and employment, and formerly of the Stonehouse Farm aforesaid, Farmer, an insolvent debtor, having been filed in the County Court of Worcestershire, at the Guildhall, Worcester, and an interim order for protection from process having been given to the said Sarah Dancocks, under the provisions of the Statutes in that case case made and provided, the said Sarah Dancocks is hereby required to appear before the said Court, on the 8th day of May next, at ten of the clock in the forenoon precisely, for her first examination touching her debts, estate, and effects, and to be further dealt with according to the provisions of the said Statutes; and the choice of the creditors’ assignees is to take place at the time so appointed. All persons indebted to the said Sarah Dancocks, or that have any of her effects, are not to pay or deliver the same but to Mr. John Hill, Clerk of the said Court, at the Guildhall, Worcester, the Official As signee of the estate and effects of the said insolvent.

Old Maps of Worcester

  1. Quoted by Dr. Nash, vol. II. p. cxvii. in Appendix. 
  2. Communicated to the author by a gentleman who, in that year, ascertained those amounts for an official purpose, on a plan of the most decided accuracy.  

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