CHIDDINGLY CHURCH - CHURCH MARKS

All this refers to the 3-rail wooden oak fencing around the Church.  It is presently (Feb 2019) in a serious state of disrepair, but a completely new (but identical) fence has been commissioned, and should be installed during the winter 2019/2020.

The following is copied from Lower's "Parochial History of Chiddingly", pages 238 and 239.

"The Church occupies a commanding situation near the centre of the parish.  The surrounding church-yard is amply stored with memorials of the departed, and encompassed by wooden rails, which are kept in repair by the tenants of the respective farms, a certain portion being supported by each.  The respective rails are marked with the initials of the tenants, and are, in consequence, denominated church-marks.  This primitive custom, though not confined to the parish, is peculiar to this part of the county.  I subjoin a document of the last century, in which the liabilities of each farm are stated.  It purports to have been "transcribed by John Herring, Vicar, Nov. 17th, 1772."

AN ACCOUNT of the Church-yard Marks of the Parish of Chiddingly taken from ancient records, beginning at the North-West corner, and so to ye East, with the number of feet each mark contains:-

                                                                                   Feet

John Chatfield, Clerk, for ye Freights maintains    33
          Ditto,                   for ye Hilders                      34
The owner of Eades Land at Whitesmith                2ft 6 ins  )
John Bannister near Holm's-Hill                                2          )
John Reed, nr. ye Dicker                                            2          )  all in one piece
Richard Turner, gent, for Goodmans                         2          )
William Thorpe, nr. ye Dicker                                    2          )
Sir John Dyke, maintains                                            9
Rose Fuller, esq., for ye Parsonage                          20
Thomas Cayley maintains                                           6    )
Edward Russell, near the Dicker                                6    )   one piece
The Park Farm                                                           45
Tart's land at Swansbrook                                           7
Highlands, Ld. Pelham                                               22
Brightling (Charity) Lands                                          9
The Hale Farm                                                           16
The Gun Lands                                                            6
The Stroud Lands                                                        9
The Gatehouse Farm                                                 40
Easterfield Farm                                                         11
Stonehill Farm                                                             16
Rich. Holman's Farm, Pickhill                                     8
Burghole Farm, Dewdney                                            5
Beard's Land, belonging to the Hale                           6
Attree's Land, Pickhill                                                 5
Peaks Farm                                                                 29
The Old-Mill lands                                                       5
Thunders-Hill, Ramsbeach, and Willetts                  20
Rich. Turner, gent, for Shirleys                                  8
Farley's Farm                                                              34
West-street                                                                  6
J. Holman, for Land near the Stream                        12
Relfs Land, near Whitesmith                                      9
Alchorn's Bird-in-hand, a gate and two posts            5
The late Miller's Land, at Muddles Green (stile)     8
Mr. Willard's Farm at Whitesmith                             24
Burghill Farm                                                               40
Thomas Bray, for land near the Dicker                      3      )
J. Ellis for ye Goosenest                                              3      )  one piece
Wm. Pink at Nash-street                                             3      )
Henry Stephens, for land nr. ye Dicker                      3
George Medley, Esq., for ye Purchase                       8
The Shelf Land belonging to Burghill Farm               10
Nash Street Lands belonging to Burghole Farm        16
Robert Smith's Land near ye Dicker                           5              )
Abr. Langham's Land, near Holmes Hill                    5ft  6 ins   ) one piece
Richard Turner, gent, for Holmes Hill                         4                  )  
Stuckles Land                                                               3ft  6 ins       )  one piece
Woodfall Down, now occupied by W. Elphick              3ft  6 ins      )
Rose Fuller, Esq., for the Pickes Land                        6
Part of Foxhunt Farm                                                    10
Thomas Hickes for Newington's Land                         5
The Place Farm including ye Gate                               32
Edward Holman, for Smith's Land (William Tourle)    6
Willm. Reynolds                                                             6
The Stream Farm                                                           29
**************

This totals to 685 feet.  I believe Freights is now called Friths, and I believe Goosenest is now Briar House in Nash Street.