West Firle

From Kelly’s Post Office Directory of Essex, Herts, Middlesex, Kent, Surrey and Sussex, 1867

WEST FIRLE is a village and parish, half a mile south from the Lewes and Eastbourne turnpike road, 5 miles south-east from Lewes, a mile and a quarter from Glynde station, and 55 miles from London, in the Eastern division of the county, hundred of Totnore, rape of Pevensey, county court district and archdeaconry of Lewes, rural deanery of Rype, and diocese of Chichester. The church of St. Peter is an ancient Gothic building, with nave, chancel, and north and south aisles: the old pews have been taken down and replaced with open sittings: there are four stained glass windows: a chapel on the north side of the chancel contains several monuments and brasses to the Gage family. The register dates from 1668. The living is a vicarage, united with Beddingham in 1747, joint annual value £480, in the gift of the Bishop and Dean and Chapter of Chichester alternately, and held by the Rev. Henry Smith, M.A., Queen’s College, Oxford, and prebendary of Chichester. Here is a National School. The principal point of attraction is Firle Place, the seat of Viscount Gage, which is a large mansion, but irregular in its architecture, having been built at different periods: it is sheltered on the south and south-west by the range of downs: the grounds adjoining are well stocked with game, and there are ponds equally well supplied with fish. From the point of Firle Beacon, one of the highest hills on the south downs, which is 820 feet above the level of the sea, the view is rich and varied over the weald for many miles. Viscount Gage is lord of the manor and owner of the whole parish, with the exception of a few acres and some houses. West Firle is the head of a union, comprising the following parishes:- Alciston, Beddingham, Berwick, Chalvington, Glynde, Rype, Selmeston, and West Firle. The Union House is here. The area is 3,392 acres, and the population in 1861 was 631.

BUSHEY LODGE is a farm, a mile and a half north-east.

Parish Clerk, John Unstead.

POST OFFICE.- Mrs. Harriet Humphreys, postmistress. Letters arrive from Lewes at 7.45 a.m.; dispatched at 6 p.m.; on sundays at 10.50 a.m. The nearest money order office is at Lewes

Liverpool & London & Globe, Henry Mockett
Provincial, Charles Briscoe

Firle Union, Rev. Edward Boys Ellman, M.A. chairman to the board; Edward Hillman, esq. clerk; Rev. William de St. Croix, M.A. chaplain; George Hother, esq., Henry Holman, esq. (East Hoathly), T. Frederick Sanger, esq. (Alfriston), medical officers; Charles Briscoe, governor; Mrs. Charlotte Briscoe, matron; Miss Emily Hendy, schoolmistress; John Simmons, relieving officer

National School, Thomas Bradford; master; Miss Harber, mistress

CARRIERS.- Henry Miles, tuesday & friday; Wm. Woods, tuesday & friday, & Brighton on thursday

Dempsey Mrs
Gage Right Hon. Viscount, J.P. Firle pl
Gage Col. The Hon. Henry, J.P. Firle place
Gage The Hon. Miss, Firle place
Gage The Hon. Miss Anna Maria, Firle place
Manns Misses
Smith Rev. Henry, M.A. [vicar]
Wollaston Rev. Thelwall [curate]

Geer Robert, boot & shoe maker
Gorringe Henry, butcher, & at High street, Lewes
Griffiths John, land steward to Viscount Gage
Guy William, farmer, New House farm
Humphreys Harriet (Mrs.) & William, grocers, drapers & corn millers
Lamming William Dunham, farmer, Middle farm
Langridge Michael & George, farmers, Charlton farm
Mockett Henry, Ram
Saxby Thomas, farmer, Home farm
Stapley Thomas, farmer, Gibraltar farm
Unstead John, wheelwright & blacksmith
Walker James, farmer, Bushey lodge
Weller Hy. farm bailiff to Viscount Gage