Amble and District
     Local History





     The town of Amble, which is distant from Warkworth about a mile and a half, stands upon a terrace with a bow-shaped outline, and when seen from the north or north-west, especially if the estuary of the Coquet is filled with water at high or spring tides, has a more than ordinarily attractive appearance. The sky-line is broken by the public buildings and the belfries of church and chapel, while the eastern end of the town is occupied by the harbour with its lofty coal staithes and abundant shipping. The township contains the hamlets and homesteads of New-hall, Moor-house, the Hope, and Link-house, and comprises an area of 1,218 acres.  There is a place of the same name in Norway, and as a component part of a word it occurs in Ambleside in the county of Westmorland, in Ambleston near Milford Haven, and Amblecote in Staffordshire.
     The prosperity of Amble and its existence as a seaport town depend exclusively upon an extensive export of coal obtained from the adjacent collieries at Radcliffe and Broomhill. To this trade is owing the rapid increase of the population, which in 1821 did not exceed 200, and in 1891 was 2,975.
     Though no camps or earthworks have survived the action of the plough, a prehistoric burial ground exists on the links from which rich results have been obtained. In the operations required to lay bare the rock and to extend the quarry there, no less than forty graves have been unearthed and probably many still remain unopened. Though bones and urns are said to have been discovered at an earlier period, the first recorded find was in the month of April, 1857, when a gale of wind laid bare a long upright stone near the end of the pier, which had beside it a slab forming the covering of a cist constructed in the usual fashion of four slabs of sandstone set edgewise in a cavity dug out of the friable shale which over- lies the harder rock. The cist, which had a direction south-east by north-west, measured 1 foot 6½ inches in depth, 2 feet 2 inches in width, 4 feet in length at the bottom, and 3 feet 4 inches at the top. It contained a perfect skeleton, lying on its left side, having the knees drawn up and the right arm thrown back, with the head to the south-west ; the skull is said to have been very low in the frontal region, but with great development of the occipital portion and with the lower jaw of unusual width and length, the teeth were regular and sound, only one was missing ; the thigh bone measured 1 foot 7½ inches. The bottom of the cist was covered to the depth of about half an inch with dark unctuous mould. By the side of the skeleton stood a vessel of the `drinking cup' type, which measures 8 inches in height, 7¼ inches in depth, and 5½ inches in diameter ; it is ornamented in zig-zag scoring alternating with dotted lines and upright or slanting scorings continued over the edge of the rim.
    But it was in 1883 that the quarry (which is situated half a mile south of the spot where the cist was found in 1857) yielded prolific results ; they have been described in papers read before the Society of Antiquaries of London by the Rev. William Greenwell :
  It consisted of a cairn, made of cobble stones from the neighbouring sea-beach, placed upon a thin layer of vegetable mould with clayey soil beneath, overlying the rock. The cairn had been about 40 feet in diameter and 5 feet high. It was situated on the low bank there bounding the sea-beach, about 70 yards from its edge, and was entirely concealed under a deposit of blown sand, 9 feet thick, and therefore rising 4 feet above the top of the cairn.  
     Though when discovered it was but a short distance from the sea, it is evident that when first erected it must have been much further distant, so far indeed as to be beyond the limit of sand blown from the beach. That this must have been the case appears to be proved by the fact that, whereas when discovered the cairn was buried like the adjoining ground under many feet of sand, it had been, when first thrown up, placed upon the ordinary surface mould which had no sand upon it, and, therefore, must have been beyond the range to which sand blown from the seashore extended.
    It had contained, so far as I could ascertain, about twenty cists of the usual kind and several deposits of burnt bones, an unusually large number of interments in one sepulchral mound. There were also seven vessels of pottery, one of which I found myself.
Bronze age drinking cup Amble Northumberland       I will now proceed to describe the cairn and its contents as I found it at the time of my visit, when, though the greater part had been destroyed during the  work of quarrying, a portion was still left undisturbed, and when some of the cists,  though they had been opened, had not been removed. What I think, must have been the central and primary interment had been contained in a cist sunk to a depth of 2 feet 4 inches through the surface soil, broken stone, locally called 'rab,' and solid rock. It had a direction west by south and east by north, and was 3 feet 7 inches long, 1 foot 11 inches wide, and 1 foot 10 inches deep, being formed of four side stones and a cover. The interment was of an unburnt body, the head of which had been placed at the east end. The bones were too much decayed to enable any further account of their position being given. In the cist were also a small bronze knife, now in the British Museum, and a 'food-vessel.' This, which has three perforated ears, is 3⅞ inches high, and 1 foot 4 inches in circumference at the widest part. It is covered over the whole surface, including the inside of the lip of the rim, with a herring-bone pattern. The knife, which has been much reduced in size by use and whetting, is 1⅜ inches long and 1⅛ inches wide, and has three rivets still remaining, by which it was attached to the handle. There was also in the cist a small piece of flint, now lost, but which, from the description given me by the man who found it, appeared to have been flaked into shape. Upon the cover of the cist, which was found broken through the middle, was a deposit of burnt bones overlaid at a height of 6 inches by a slab of sandstone larger than the cover stone of the cist, and placed at the level of the original surface. Just beyond the east end of this cist was a small and rather irregularly shaped one, having one side about 1 foot 4 inches long, the other being about 1 foot ; the two ends were closed each by a single stone. It was covered by cobble stones, and contained the much decayed bones of a child. Three feet to the south-west of the first cist, and 1 foot 3 inches above the original surface of the ground, was a deposit of burnt bones, those of an adult, laid in a round heap, about 10 inches in diameter. Six feet south-south-west from the same cist was a smaller one, lying east and west, 2 feet long, 1 foot 2 inches wide, and 1 foot deep. It was made of four side stones and a cover, and was placed on the top of the broken rock underlying the surface soil. There were, when I saw it, some burnt bones lying about it, evidently  not in their original place of deposit, from which I am inclined to believe it had contained a burial after cremation. I could, however, obtain no distinct account from the workmen, except that there was a 'pot' in it. This vessel, which has been given to the British Museum, is 5⅜ inches high, 4⅜ inches wide at the top, and 3¼ inches at the bottom. It is coarsely made, and in shape is something like a cinerary urn. On the inside of the lip of the rim is a band of diagonal lines, and on the upper part of the vessel, for a space of 2½ inches, a herring-bone pattern of five rows, the remaining part of the vessel being plain. All the lines have been made by a sharp-pointed instrument.
    To the east of the cist just described had been two others, both destroyed before my visit, but which the workmen told me were similar in form and construction to those still remaining, and each containing a 'pot.' These, now in the possession of Mr. G. H. Thompson of Alnwick, are 'food-vessels.' One, which is rather roughly made, is 1 foot 3 inches high, 15¾ inches in circumference at the widest part, and is ornamented on the upper part with a band of vertical lines, between one band above and two beneath of inclining lines; the lower part has lines irregularly crossing each other and forming no definite pattern. The other, which is better made and ornamented, is 4¾ inches high and 1 foot 6 inches in circumference at the widest part. The upper part has nine lines encircling it, beneath which are three bands of vertical lines, the middle one being placed between three encircling lines above and three beneath. All the lines are made by impressions of twisted thong. 'Thirteen feet south-south-west from the cist first described was one, the bottom of which was at the same level as the cover of the first. It had a direction west by north and east by south, and was 2 feet 6 inches long, 1 foot 3 inches wide, and the same deep. The workmen had no recollection of any bones, but there was a 'pot' in it. Six feet north of the first cist, and 1 foot 6 inches higher than the stone which covered the deposit of burnt bones lying on the cist cover, was a 'food-vessel,' now in the British Museum, which almost touched the south-east corner of another cist, the bottom of which was formed by the surface soil. It was north-east and south-west, 3 feet 10 inches long, 1 foot 8 inches wide, and 1 foot 10 inches deep, being made of four side stones and a cover, and having the joints filled in with clay. It contained the much decayed bones of an adult, of which sufficient remained to show that the body had been laid on the left side with the head to the east. On the bottom of the cist was some charcoal, an invariable accompaniment of an interment by inhumation. Close by the 'food-vessel' were some teeth just traceable, and a little further away were remains of bones in the same decayed condition, all indicative of the interment of an unburnt body, with which the vessel had almost certainly been associated. It is 5½, inches high, 4¾ inches wide at the top, and 2½ inches wide at the bottom. The inside of the lip has a herring-bone pattern upon it. The outside has a hand of diagonal lines with four encircling lines beneath; then follows, for a space of 3 inches, a herring-bone pattern, having beneath three encircling lines; the remaining space of inch is plain. All the lines have been made by a sharp-pointed tool.
Bronze Knife  Cist Vessel 
    The above-mentioned graves were placed on the clay or natural rock, but another grave which had a direction north and south had the bottom formed of flat stones ; it measured 4 feet in length, 2 feet in height, and 2 feet 6 inches in breadth. Embedded in the sand, which had drifted into it, was an urn standing at the north end, but in an inverted position ; it measures 6 inches in height, 1 foot 8 inches in circumference, and 5 inches in diameter inside the mouth ; the lip, which is ¾ inch broad, has a single cable twist line in the middle ; the neck has a zig-zag ornamentation, but the lower portion of the cup is perfectly plain and glossy, having apparently been smoothed over with some hard instrument. No large, but some small pieces of bone were found.
    Ten years later, in an extension of the quarry about 60 yards distant from the site of those above described, there was found a cist 4 feet 6 inches long and 2 feet 6 inches broad, in which there were portions of the leg bones of its former occupant, and an urn of tasteful design but rude workmanship, measuring 7¼ inches in height and 5¼ inches across the mouth. About the same period there was found another urn broken and destroyed in taking it from the grave, a portion of a brachycephalic skull, and a flint flake, probably a knife, which measures 3¾ inches in length by 1⅝  inches in breath.
     Originally a member of the great Vesci barony, Amble was one of the manors with which Robert de Mowbray endowed the priory of Tynemouth when it was refounded and affiliated to the Benedictine abbey of St. Alban's in 1090. In the apportionment of estates made in the time of abbot Richard de Albini (died 1119) it was agreed that the abbot and his successors should retain Amble and Coquet Island, with the churches of Woodhorn and Bywell, and also a pension of 30s. a year out of the church of Tynemouth, but that no further demand should be made upon the priory.
     Amongst the many estates mentioned in the recitals in the charter of confirmation granted on the 28th of December, 1189, by Richard I., before setting out for the Holy Land on the third crusade, were Ambell and Hauekeslowe, but this charter having been lost or mislaid, and an infraction of the rights given by it having been made during the king's captivity in Austria, it was renewed at the Chateau Gaillard near Les Andelys in Normandy on the 13th of November, 1198.
     At the beginning of the thirteenth century an agreement was made between Robert fitz Roger, lord of Warkworth (died 1214), and Ralph de Gubion the prior (circa 1209-1223), and the convent of Tynemouth to regulate the service due from the tenants of Amble and Hauxley of grinding their corn at the manorial mills of Warkworth. The produce of the demesne (which comprised three plough lands) in Amble was to be exempt, but all the tenants were to pay multure, and on the other hand, Robert fitz Roger bound himself and his successors to find the convent with timber for three ploughs and three harrows, to supply seven loads of firewood from the woods of Warkworth, and to pay 40s. a year to the prior.
      On the 13th of November, 1280, an enquiry was ordered concerning the seizure at Amble of the ship of Stephen of .
       In the taxation of Pope Nicholas in 1292, the prior and convent held in Anebell two carucates of land worth (after deducting an annual expenditure of 21s.) 42s., rents paid in money, 46s. 7d., a rent-charge arising in Warkworth, 40s., and a similar payment from Hauxley of 45s. 10d. ; they also received from Amble 42 quarters of malt or barley, worth at 2s. 6d. a quarter, £5 5s.  Shortly afterward the abbot of St. Alban's and the prior of Tynemouth were required to prove their rights as against the king to sea wreck and free warren in Amble and Hauxley, and the amercements of the tenants there ; they entered an appearance before the king's justices at Newcastle, on the 18th of June (?) 1293.
     In 1295 the demesne lands in Amble were found to comprise 44½  acres in the South-flat, 30 acres in the East-flat, 15½ acres in the West-flat, 7 acres in the Crooks, 16 acres in the flats at the Hope, 30 acres in Gonuldes Cross, and 23 acres in Dolakelawe, 2½ roods in the Syket-meadow at the North side Hope, 3 roods in the Syket-meadow under Gonuldes Cross, 6 acres in the West-mede at Blaklawe, 1½ acres in the East-mede, and 20 acres in the Strother. There were eighteen tenants who asserted that they were freeholders (tenantes per se ut dicunt libere), and there were also twenty-two bond tenants who amongst them held 465 acres of land.


   A. R.    A. R.
Nicholaus  26 0 Adam Newbond   5  2
Henricus filius Simonis  29 1 Johannes le Lepol   2  0
Simon Trottyng  18 1 Robertus filius Hytred   2  2
Willelmus Lond   6  0 Willelmus filius Walteri   3  2
Nicholaus filius fabri   6  0  Juliana Leysyns   1  0
Randulfus filius Galfridi   9  0 Adam filius Petri   3  2
Willelmus Wanpayn   1  2 Alicia filia Randolfi   1  0
Alicia Gune filia   3  2 Alicia uxor Lyalf   1  0
Asplyun faber   7  0 Simon filius Walteri   0  2


 These names and quantities may be compared with the contemporary list of

persons who were rated to and paid the following subsidy :


  £.  s. d.   s.  d.
Summa bonorum     Symonis filii Walteri 0  14  4 unde regi 1   3¾
           "                Willelmi filii Willelln 0  13  0 unde regi  1  2¼
            "                 Roberti filii Hutredi 0  12  0 unde regi 1    1
        "                  Roberti filii Eliae 0  13  0 unde regi 1   2¼
         "                Walteri filii Rogeri 0  13  0 unde regi 1   2¼
           "               Ranulphi filii Henrici 0  13  0 unde regi 1   2¼
            "               Symonis filii Ranulphi 0  13  0 unde regi 1   2¼
          "                Ranulphi filii Galfridi 0  12  6 unde regi 1  1¾
   "                Thomae Punder 0  17  0 unde regi 1  7½
Summa hujus villae £ 6  1s  8d. unde domino regi   11s  0¾d
Summa bonorum    Nicholai de Ambel 2  17  8 unde regi 5   3


      In 1316 a ship laden at Hartlepool with wheat, rye, and salt, and bound for Berwick-on-Tweed, for the sustenance of the garrison there, having been driven ashore at the port of Warkworth by the attack of pirates, was boarded by Richard de Thirlewal, Robert de Arreyns, Eustace the constable of Warkworth, John de Aketon, Hugh Galoun, John of Lescebury and others, who carried away the cargo and arrested the ship. A commission was thereupon issued at the suit of Richard de la More and others, the master and freighters of the Ship.
     Eight years later a ship belonging to certain merchants of Bruges and Ypres (John Robin being master), and freighted 'cum lanis, coriis, pellibus, lanutis,' and other goods to the value of £600, shipped at Berwick and bound for Flanders, was cast ashore at Amble in a storm. The master and crew escaped safe to land, whereby the said goods and chattels could not be called a wreck according to the law and custom of England ; yet Adam son of Nicholas of Haukeslawe, Robert de Raynham, Roger son of Robert de Raynham, Robert brother of the same Roger, William son of Thomas, Roger son of William son of Thomas, Robert son of William son of Thomas, Nicholas son of Adam of Haukeslawe, Henry de Rihill of Werkeworth, Adam ` le taillour,' William Fox, Thomas Egly, Henry 'le peschour,' Nicholas Scot, John Cokkebayn, Alan Alegode of Werkeworth, Richard the grieve of Togesdene, William son of Robert, Stephen of Togesden, Adam son of Peter of Anebille, Henry son of Robert, William son of Henry, Robert 'ponder,' Robert Batyn, John son of Simon, John 'le fevre' of Anebille, Hugh Wayt of Aclynton, William Paynesman of Aclynton, Nicholas Mawsone of Newbiggyng, Alexander son of Elias, Robert Shoute, John Hant, John son of John 'le clerk,' John son of Juliana, Roger Botting, and Robert del Borne of Newbiggyng and others, seized and robbed the ship at the vill of Anebille. The king, on the petition of the merchants, on the 28th of March, 1324, ordered an enquiry.
    Two years afterwards all the ships of Warkworth capable of carrying 40 tons and more were ordered to join the royal fleet under the command of John de Sturmy, the king's admiral.
     In 1328 the twenty-two bond tenants in Amble paid for 'huse-male,' 7s. 4d. a year in money, and rendered in labour, eggs, and fowls, £5 12s. 9d. (of which sum there was usually expended 20s. in charges). A pasture called Vilkemer yielded a rent of 5s. ; certain meadows were let for 40s., 'de forlandes dimisso diversis tenentibus,' 41s. 8d.; 2s. was paid for abbotscoth ; fifteen cottagers paid 12s. 2d. ; 40s. was received from Warkworth mill ; but the Scodewell fishing was unlet, and the cane-fish and the marsh lands produced nothing. In the following year, however, the fishing was let to one ' Baty,' a fisherman at Amble, for the large rent of £5 a year.
    About this period Richard de Tweng, the prior of Tynemouth (1320-1339), granted several short leases of parcels of demesne lands. Roger, son of William of Hauxley, obtained 4 acres near Blakelawe for eight years, at 8d. an acre ; John, son of Thomas of Amble, 2 acres ; William Pikenot', 4 acres ; and John Allison of Hauxley, 4 acres of land lying near 'Gunnildes-crosse ' for similar periods and at similar rentals.
    On the 1st of August, 1329, the last lord of Warkworth of the family of Clavering issued an order to his receiver to pay to the prior of Tynemouth the sum of 40s. due to him in respect of the manors of Amble and Hauxley for a rent-charge out of the mill at Warkworth, and in February, 1330, the prior, being at Amble, released a payment of a moiety of the same rent.
     On the Tuesday after Ascension day, 1336, an inquisition was taken at Amble to ascertain whether Adam, the son of John, the son of Simon of Amble, was or was not a nief of the prior of Tynemouth.
     Henry Percy, the new lord of Warkworth, being desirous to ascertain the mutual obligation of the prior and convent and himself, caused an inquisition to be taken in 1347 in which it was found that the tenants of Amble and Hauxley were bound to grind their corn at Warkworth mill and pay the fourteenth measure for multure ; that the tenants of Amble were entitled to have in their town two hand mills, and the tenants of Hauxley one hand mill, which they might use only when the Warkworth mill was hindered by floods or in time of necessity. The tenants of both townships were chargeable with multure on the malt paid as rent in kind to the convent, but in case they were so impoverished by war or fire as to be unable to pay that rent in full, then only a proportionate part of multure on the malt was to be exacted. The monks of Coquet Island had their corn ground free. The finding of the jury was embodied in an agreement made between the prior and Henry de Percy at Tynemouth, at Michaelmas, 1317.
     At the end of the fifteenth century the earl of Northumberland used to farm a portion of the corn tithes of the rectory of Warkworth for the provision of his household. At Michaelmas, 1472, Robert Brown and William Cowyke were each allowed 3s. 4d. for collecting the tithe sheaves of Amble and Hauxley, and 12d. was allowed for three tubs of beer given to the tenants there and at Hadston, 'nomine regardi ad decimandum insimul totum granum ibidem.' William Hordon and Richard Brown were paid 6s. 8d. for driving the two waggons employed to carry the said sheaves to the lord's grange, being at the rate of 8d. a day between them. At Michaelmas, 1474, the keeper of the granary takes credit for the delivery to the household of 18 quarters 1 bushel and 2 pecks of wheat at 5s. 4d. a quarter, and of 1 quarter 4 bushels at 4s. a quarter, also of 42 quarters of oats at 2s. a quarter, parcel of the tithes of Amble, Hauxley, and East Chevington. The barley, beans, and peas had not yet been threshed. William Cowyk was paid 3s. 8d. for collecting the tithe sheaves of Amble, John Snape 3s. 8d. for collecting those of Hauxley, and William Cuthbert 3s. 8d. for collecting those of Hadston. At Michaelmas, 1486, the sum of 4s. 9d. was allowed for the carriage of nineteen waggon loads of white straw from Amble, Hauxley, and Hadston for thatching for the roof of the lord's granary at Warkworth.
     At the period of the dissolution of the monasteries there were fourteen tenants in Amble, besides cottagers, apparently seven in number. In the Ministers' Accounts of the year 1539, John Widdrington, the bailiff; accounts for £15 13s. 6d., being rents received from twenty-one copyhold tenants for their holdings, for a pasture field called Wylde-mere-mede and for a meadow called Halle-mede, possibly parcels of the demesne lands; for £5 6s. 2d. for the value of 24 quarters of barley paid in kind by the fourteen tenants at the rate of 1 quarter and 6 bushels apiece ; for £1 6s. 8d. for four score of salt fish accruing from four cobles; for 1s. for a cottage ; for 6s. from the fines or assize of bread and ale paid according to ancient custom ; and for 14d. for the pannage of swine ; making a total revenue from the township of £22 14s 6d.
     The tenants of the manor were less indulgently treated under the Crown than under their former masters. In 1580 it was reported that they were so 'exacted by the queen's officers they are ready to give up their holdings.' The rents continued to be paid partly in money and partly in kind. Of the latter it was the custom that the payment should be 'delayed till the auditt twelfemonth after and then of curtesie of th' officer yt ys set at a grote a bowl under the price of the markett at Newcastle.' This arrangement subsequently fell through, and the payment of the hall corn-barley, consisting of 24 quarters, was made by the tenants to the representative or farmer of the lord of the manor, upon an appointed day on the site and near the remains of the old manor house, by being poured out by the tenant upon a great sheet and then measured up by the lord's representative. This system continued until the beginning of this century, when it was superseded by a money present.
There is not sufficient evidence to prove that the prior and convent of Tynemouth had a cell at Amble, but they undoubtedly possessed the old manor house which occupied a site on the brow of the bank or terrace which overhung the river Coquet. Of this house there only remains a fragment of masonry, dating from the fifteenth century, showing a window of two lights.

Amongst the tenants who during the sixteenth century held lands in Amble by copy of court roll was the family of Arnold. In a case of disputed succession heard at York in 1611, before the Council of the North, Robert Smith of Amble, a man of seventy-eight years of age, deposed :
   That he did well knowe John Arnolde of Ambell, and that the said John Arnolde died seized of a tenement in Amble, now in the tenure or occupation of Robert Arnolde of Berlinge, or his assigns; and he did knowe Thomas Arnolde, brother to the said John Arnolde, and that the said Thomas had a son whose name was Thomas, and that the said Robert Arnolde is son and heir of the said Thomas the younger; and he dothe further saie upon his oath that he doth well remember that the prior of the monastery of Tynemouth was in displeasure with the said John Arnolde; and the said John did goe to London, and at his return went to the prior and did . . . . with him, and the prior would not grant him a coppy of the said tenement in Ambell, untill he was content to give so many nobles as there were dores about his house, and there were found xiiij dores, and John Arnolde giving satisfaction to the prior, he had his coppie according to custom.


 Arnold of Amble




 At a court holden in the manor of Amble and Hauxley on the 25th of January, 1592/3,' Juratores dicunt quod Robertus Howey mortuus est et dicunt quod . . . . dedit . . . . de et in tenementum in Ambell coram prox . . . . Roberti Patersone filio Johannis Patersone et heredibus suis secund. consuetud. et p. def. exit. ad opus Edvardi Patersone fratris ejusd. Roberti. Salvo Jane uxor Johannis Patersone durante viduatate.' Ex cartis Cookson of Meldon.

          1597, 21st December. Memorandum that I, Richard Spence, have delivered to William Hall for the debt of Mr. William Crowe, merchant, due to Edward Paterson, mason, three webbes of lead and one stithie (? anvil) of cast iron, on condition that if the said Edward be not paid 30s. before, etc., he may sell the said lead and iron and pay himself. Ibid.

          1606, 1st November. Will of Robert Paterson of Amble, husbandman. To be buried within the parish church of Warkworth. I give to my nephew Nicholas Scrogges two oxen, to my niece Elizabeth Scrogges one boule of oates : My wife Elizabeth Patterson and my children to be executors of this my will. Proved 1606. Amount of inventory, £49 5s. 6d. Durham Probate Registry.

          1608, 10th May. Warrant to enquire if Robert Arnold be the kinsman and next heir of John Arnold, deceased, against Elizabeth Paterson, widow, who holds 40 acres of land, 6 acres of meadow, and 40 acres of pasture and 100 acres of common, with purtenences in Amble claimed by the said Robert. Ex cartis Cookson of Meldon.

          1610, 26th August. Bond from Robert Arnold for £60 to admit Arthur Forster into a tenement in Ambell in the possession of Elizabeth Patterson. Ibid.

          1611, 8th August. Answer of Arthur Forster to the bill of Edward Patterson. It appears by the joint answers of Arthur Forster and Elizabeth Patterson, widow, that the plaintiff, Edward Patterson, claimed his brother Robert Patterson's estate on the ground that Elizabeth had had a child during widowhood and thereby forfeited her estate, but `she doth not acknowledge that any widowe by the custome of the said mannor (i.e., of Amble) if she in her widowhood doe lyve unchaist and incontynently and shall have a child unlawfully begotten, shall loose the said premisses or shall be avoyded from the same before her widowhead be determyned. But if the matter of incontinency and haveing a childe which is objected in the bill of complaint against the defendent were true, yet whether therby this defendent should loose her widow's estate in and to the premises by any custome in the said mannor or no yis a matter fytt to be tryed at the comon lawe and is not fitt to be brought in question in this honourable court, as she is informed by her counsell, being a matter soe penal to this defendant as is pretended whereby if there be any such custome her estate might be in jeoperdye.' Ibid.


 By order of the Court of Exchequer 'a survey of the mannor of Ambell and Auxley' was made in September, 1608, by Bartholomew Haggatt and George Warde, gentlemen, as commissioners, who found that there were in Amble fourteen tenants who held their lands by copy of court roll ; there were also five cottage tenants. The sum of the copyhold rents was found to be £16 0s. 5d., and the leasehold and other rents amounted to £9 6s.10d.




Copyhold Tenants.  Former Tenants. Date
of Copy
 Value beyond

£ s. d.


£ s. d.

Robert Hudson Robert Hudson, his father 7th April, 1598 1 6 4 14 7 0 0
Hugh Hodgson William Hodgson, his father 9th Oct., 1594 0 19 4 14 6 10 0
Edward Clarke Edward Clarke, his father 24th March, 1586/7 0 19 7 14 6 10 0
Robert Widdrington John Barnell (? Arnell) 23rd April, 1602 1 1 3 14 6 13 4
Robert Smith, jun Robert Smith, his father 24th March, 1586/7 1 1 3 14  6 13 4
Dionise Wilson Roger Smith, by surrender of Robert Smith, his son 4th August, 1603 1 3 7 14 6 10 0
Nicholas Thew George Thew , his father 7th April, 1598  1 6 2 14 7 0 0
Edward Tayler Robert Tayler, his father 4th August, 1603 1 0 11 14 6 6 8
John Wilson Robert Wilson 25th Oct., 1596 1 5 6 14 6 13 4
Henry Johnson  George Hudson Oct., 1590  0 19 3 14 6 6 8
Elizabeth Patterson Robert Patterson, her husband 24th March, 1586/7 0 19 11 14 6 6 8
William Tayler Robert Tayler, his father 24th March, 1586/7 1 4 1 14 6 13 4
John Clarke William Wright 24th March, 1586/7 0 19 1 14  6 5 0
John Hudson Roger Bayard 7th April, 1598 0 17 9 14 5 13 4




Cottage Tenants. Date of Copy. Rent. Value beyond Rent.
    s. d.  s. d.
Elizabeth Gibson, late wife of Robert Gibson, deceased, one cottage during her widow-
hood, by her late husband's copy ... ...  
9th October, 1594 2 0 6 8
Ibid., one cottage during her widowhood by copy of Robert Gibson, her husband's father ...   9th October, 1594 1 0 4 0
Elinor Hall, late wife of Cuthbert Hall, deceased, one cottage, by her late husband's
copy ...
12th April, 1597 2 8 6 8
Edward Thompson, late Robert Thompson,
his father ...  
9th October, 1594 1 0 3 4
Robert Bullock, late William Browell ...   24th March, 1586/7 9 9 20 0


   John Parkar of Norwiche houldeth there the scite of the mannor of Ambell, per annum 3s. 4d. ; the scituation of the salte-pannes ther, 4s. ; all mynes of coales ther and in Auxley, per annum 40s.; and a conny warren upon Ambells-heughe, per annum I10s., by letters patentes graunted to him bearing date 30th March, 1589/90, for 21 yeeres, and afterwardes in reversion unto Roger Molsdale and Henrie Paule dated 6th July, 1590, for 21 yeeres, £2 18s. 4d. Annual value beyond the rent, £11.
     All the tenantes ther have ancientlie paide for the assize of breade and beere 6s. per annum by custome onley; by which they doe give licence to some one to brew and bake within the mannor, and at present they have licenced one Elizabeth Gibson, who paieth yerely 6s.
    All the tennants ther, beinge 14 entire tenements, doe paie yeerlie 14 bushells of barlye per everie tenement, Winchester measure, as is before showen, besides their money rent ; all which rent-come is letten in lease unto Robert Woodrington and others by letters patentes dated 7th August, 1590, for 21 yeeres rendering per annum £6 2s. 6d. Annual value beyond the rent, £8.
    William Toppinge houldeth ther a quarrie of stones within this mannor by letters patentes granted from our late soveraigne Queene Elizabeth, but he nether appeared nor showed the same.
     The tenants ther claime to houlde their lands of the mannor of Tynmouth by coppie of court roll secundum consuetudinem husband. and that after the death of every tenante his next heire of the whole bloode is to be admitted accordinge to the custome, paying a yeere's rent for a fine, and two yeeres' rent for a fine upon every surrender.
     But wee cannot finde that they have any such estate of inheritance for that wee finde divers coppies graunted sibi et assignatis suis.
     For the payment of their fines wee finde an incertaintie and cannot reporte whether they ought to be arbitrable or noe, for that the earle of Northumberland's deputy captaine was always deputy steward ther, who governed them, as they say, not accordinge to their customes but accordinge to his owne will. The recordes are in the earle of Northumberland his keepinge, and will best showe the state of their tenure and customes whereunto he refers us. Their fines, amerciaments, and profittes of court, etc., are received by the earle of Northumberland's officers as due to him by his letters patents, but whether hee ought to accounte for the same wee cannot tell, because wee never sawe his letters patents.

    In the years 1615 and 1616 there were suits in the Court of Exchequer brought by Robert Hudson and others, tenants in the king's manor of Amble, against John Wharrier, Thomas Davy, Robert Arnold, Hugh Elder, William Wharrier, and Thomas Elder, tenants in the earl of Northumberland's manor of Birling, concerning the boundary of the respective manors and townships, and more particularly concerning the pasturage of some 16 acres of land called the Salt-goates on the north side of the Coquet. Witnesses deposed that the Coquet had worn away much of the ground upon the south side of the river, and had laid it to the parcel of ground in question lying upon the north side; that it had formerly been the custom to ride the bounds between Amble and Birling upon St. Helen's day.
    The manor remained in the Crown until the 25th of September, 1628, when, with Hauxley and many other estates of the dissolved priory of Tyne-mouth, it was sold by Charles I. to Edward Ditchfield and others as trustees of the corporation of the city of London. The grant included :
     The township of Ambell, with lands in the tenure of divers persons at the lord's will, of the yearly value of £15 13s. 6d.; 24 quarters and 4 bushels of barley, annually paid by fourteen tenants (that is to say, 1 quarter and 6 bushels by each tenant) valued at £6 2s. 6d. per annum; a cottage worth 12d. yearly ; all the rents of assize of bread and ale payable by the tenants there, amounting to 6s. yearly ; the pannage of swine payable by fourteen tenants there, viz. by every tenant, 1d.; all that manor house or site in the street of Ambell, then or late in the tenure of Robert Bullock, worth 3s. 4d. per annum; the site of a salt pit or salt-pan there, worth 4s. per annum; the coal mines there, valued at 41s. per annum; a coney garth worth 10s. per annum; the whole being worth £25 2s. 6d. per annum.
    The whole was to be held of the Crown as of the manor of East Greenwich by fealty in free socage at the reserved or fee farm rent of £25 2s. 6d. On the 8th of March, 1629, it was sold to Sir William Hewitt of Brightwell, Suffolk, knight, and Thomas Hewitt, his son, who by bargain and sale dated the 23rd of November, 1630, conveyed to Henry Lawson of Newcastle, merchant, and Henry Horsley of Milburn Grange the lands and tenements in Amble which were formerly in the occupation of :
  £ s. d.    £ s. d.
Robert Hudson, at the rent of, 1  6  4 John Clark,  at the rent of, 0  19  1
Hugh Hodgson      " 0  19  4 Robert Widdrington      " 1  1  3
Robert Smith      " 1  1  3 Robert Taylor      " 1  0  11
Roger Smith      " 1  3 7 Robert Bullock     "  0  9  9
Robert Patterson     " 0  19  1 Cuthbert Hall     " 0  2  8
  9  4  1


 which tenements were at that time severally in the tenure of Robert Hudson (son of the above-named Robert), Robert Garrett, Thomas Smith, Dionis Wilson, George Browell, John White, Margaret Bullock, widow, and William Hall. The purchasers covenanted to pay £9 4s. 1d. parcel of the fee farm rent of £15 13s. 6d. reserved to the Crown. The vendors specially reserved to themselves the hall corn-barley payable yearly at the feast of the Purification at the manor or hall house of Amble, and also the coal mines with wayleave and stayleave, and the liberty of digging pits, paying to Lawson and Horsley and their heirs 'the accustomed recompense for breaking and digging the ground in which any pit for getting coal shall hereafter happen to be sunk or wrought.' The rights reserved under this deed were subsequently conveyed by Hewitt to certain persons as trustees for Sir William Fenwick of Meldon.
     The manorial rights, the site of the manor house, and the royalties which were acquired on the 24th of June, 1631, by Sir William Fenwick were forfeited by him during the civil wars and vested in the commissioners for compounding. On the 17th of June, 1652, Martin Fenwick of Kenton, after stating that he had farmed the manor house, the salt-pans, and the colliery under the yearly rent of £46, petitioned them for a renewal of his lease because :
     Your peticoner hath disbursed for the wining of the colliery there, what is not as yett pfected, above one hundred pownds more then the profitts he hath hitherto received, which had beene utterly lost and is still in danger, butt by your petconer's speciall industry and excessive charges.
        Thatt the said mannor howse is much ruined and ready to fall for want of repaire, your peticoner hitherto haveing had noe allowance for repaire thereof, althoe he have beene farmer for many yeares by past.
        In the following year the commissioners entered into articles of agreement with George Clarkson, esq., and Samuel Foxley, gent., for the sale of certain lands at Heron's-close, Espley, Newton-by-the-sea, and Alnwick, all forfeited by Sir William Fenwick, and also of `all that house called or knowne by the name of Ambell hall, with the lands and appurtenances thereunto belonginge, and all those the salt-panns, collyery, conney warren, fishinge, and rent-come belonging to Ambell hall in the parish of Warkworth.
     Though Sir William Fenwick died in London in May, 1652, his name was, on the 2nd of November following, inserted in the bill for the sale of lands forfeited to the Commonwealth for treason. Catherine Fenwick, the second of his three daughters and co-heiresses, became the second wife of Sir Francis Radcliffe, afterwards earl of Derwentwater. Clark and Foxley acted as trustees and agents for Lady Radcliffe, with whose descendants the Amble estate remained until 1732. In an inquisition taken (under a commission issued under the Great Seal 27th February, 1741/2) at Morpeth on the 4th of November, 1742, it was found that William Radcliffe, late of Amble, esq., died at Rome on the 6th of November, 1732, seised of the manor or lordship of Amble, of 32 old bolls and 4 bushels of barley payable each year at Candlemas by the tenants of Amble, of a free warren or coney garth at Amble and Hauxley, a smith's shop at Amble, the coal mines at Amble and Hauxley, salt-pans at Amble, four 'farms' of land in Amble, called Hope-house, and two 'farms' of land in Hauxley, called the Hauxley-fields, of a burgess house, garth, and four stints in Warkworth, and of three 'farms' and a coney warren in Togston Moor-houses, commonly called the Low-hall, of the total annual value of £262 12s.
    Owing to the attainder of James, earl of Derwentwater, and of his brother, Charles Radcliffe, for high treason, William Radcliffe's estate was escheated to the Crown. But by an exercise of the royal bounty the lands were granted under successive leases to trustees for the benefit of, and to make some provision for, the children of the attainted Charles Radcliffe by his marriage with Charlotte, countess of Newbrough, until, under the powers conferred by an enabling Act of Parliament passed in the 34th year of his reign, George III. by letters patent dated the 8th of December, 1798, granted to Anthony James, earl of Newbrough, and his heirs all that manor of Amble and the farms, lands, hereditaments, and premises with their royalties, rights, members, and appurtenances in Amble, Hauxley, and Warkworth, as the said William Radcliffe held the same at the time of his death. The premises so granted at the death of the countess of Newbrough in 1853 passed to her husband, Lieutenant-colonel Charles Leslie, and to his issue by a former marriage. The present owner is Mr. Charles Leslie of Slindon, Sussex.
     Lawson and Horsley, to whom a considerable part of Amble was conveyed in 1630, acted as trustees for certain of the copyhold tenants and others, to whom they subsequently conveyed parcels of the lands in such manner that in 1663 the township was held in the following proportions :


Nicholas Lewin rated at, £40 or four-fourteenth parts in value of the township.
Robert Widdrington " £30 or three-fourteenth                 "       "
Edward Cook " £30 or three-fourteenth                  "       "
William Smith " £10 or one-fourteenth                 "       "
Edward Browell " £10 or one-fourteenth                 "       "
John Taylor " £10 or one-fourteenth                 "       "
William Reed " £10 or one-fourteenth                 "       "
Francis Radcliffe for the hall corn




 From Sir Francis Radcliffe and from the above-named seven freeholders the title of every landholder at the present day is derived.
      Of the family of Lewin, who also held lands in Warkworth, Alnmouth, and Bamburgh, little is known. There were proceedings in 1638 in the Court of Exchequer brought by Thomas Lewin, gent., against Sir William Carnaby, knight, the high sheriff, claiming damages for a seizure for a Crown debt of the complainant's goods alleged to have been improperly made in August, 1636. The depositions state that the sheriff's officers drove away twelve oxen and twelve milk kine worth £84, the oxen being yoked to two wains laden with the complainant's corn and carrying the same home to his stack garth at Amble, that the kine served partly for the maintenance of his family, and for want of them he had no milk. That at the time of the seizure the complainant was possessed of at least eighty horses and mares, besides sheep, young cattle, and other goods in Northumberland to the value of £600, which the sheriff might as well have seized upon as upon the oxen and kine. That for want of the draught oxen 320 thrave of oats stood out till after Martinmas, and a third part was spoiled : that for want of the oxen the complainant was forced in the autumn to sow all his hard corn upon three tilths instead of four, by reason of which so many thistles sprang up as to choke most of it.
    Thomas and Nicholas Lewin in 1651 conveyed two house steads in Amble to Robert Widdrington, but in 1663 Nicholas Lewin was still possessed of four fourteenth parts of Amble and of two thirteenth parts of Hauxley, and in 1683 Thomas Lewin of Amble acted as foreman to the grand jury at the Northumberland sessions held at Morpeth. It is believed that both of these estates were acquired by the Radcliffe family, and that they are represented by Amble Hope-house and the Hauxley fields, which now belong to Mr. C. Leslie.
     On the 22nd of January, 1616, George Whitehead wrote to the earl of Northumberland from North Shields :
      Upon the sitting of a commission procured by your lordship at Warkworth in October last, the principall men of Ambell made means to me by Mr. Lewen to move your lordship in ther behalf for ye chardges, and they would utterly relinquish ther supposed tytle and surcease ther suyte, and, as I take it, I write soe to your lordship.
     But nowe one Dennis Wilson, one of those that lately hayth bought two farmes in Ambell, hayth procured a comissione to examine witnesses, and sent out by his commissioners, beinge one of them a great recusant and the other a base fellow, ther precepte to none but to certayne poore men that have before bene examined for your lordship onely to entrappe them; what is doone on that I refer me to Mr. Astell's letter, who was ther with me.
     This Wilsone is servante to my lord of Shrewsbury, a busy-headed, wranglinge fellowe; yf my lorde coome to see your lordship you might doe well to tell him of it, or els to send Mr. Fotherley from your lordship to my lord, for yf he forbide him he dare not meddle any more. I write this that your lordship may save some chardge, this multitude [a word illegible] ther commone purse may but your lordship to spend by this busye fellowe's procurement.
    On the 11th of August, 1632, Lawson and Horsley executed a deed or declaration of trust in which they declared that they had purchased the three farms in the possession of Dionis Wilson in trust for the said Dionis Wilson and for Edward Wilson, his son and heir. After the death of Dionis Wilson, Henry Horsley and James Whitehead joined with Edward Wilson on the 20th of August, 1649, in conveying these three farms (subsequently called Amble New-hall) to Catherine Wilson, spinster, in consideration of £300. Catherine Wilson on the 29th of July, 1650, conveyed the three farms in Amble and two farms in Old Moor, near Longhurst, to John Thompson, whom she subsequently married.  Thompson, who was rector of Bothal, and Catherine, his wife, on the 6th of December, 1652, sold their lands in Amble to Edward Cook,  who, in 1663, was rated for the same at £30 per annum.




(a) Mr. Newton Ogle's Deeds. (c) Calamy, vol. ii. p. 504.
(b) Schedule of Deeds of Amble
 New-hall, Rev. John Hodgson's
(d) Register of St. Oswald's, Durham.
(e) Durham Probate Registry.



   On the 31st of July, 1660, Robert Widdrington, Nicholas Lewin, John Taylor, Edward Browell, and William Reed, styled 'the neighbours of Amble,' entered into an agreement with Edward Cook, whereby the latter agreed to allow during pleasure :
   A free way out of the west end of Ambell and from his yeate there to the place called the West-yeate, and from the said West-yeate straight up a rigg thereon, using only two riggs at the most, straight up to the Rye Haven way and then keeping that way for all occasions of the said neighbours : and that all the said neighbours shall have liberty from the 14th day of June to the 1st day of July yearly and no longer to lead whins from the Slow Wickett, etc.
     The place whence Edward Cook came to the parish of Warkworth is not known, but it is conjectured that he belonged to the neighbourhood of Dilston or Corbridge, in which parish he left kinsmen settled at Aydon. He was residing at Hadston in 1657, when he entered into articles of marriage with Jane Patterson, and at Amble New-hall in 1685, when he executed a will (subsequently revoked), in which he styles John Cook `now inhabiting in Togson,' his eldest son. He was in 1685 in possession of estates in Amble, Cresswell, in the south side of Newton-on-the-Moor (with parcels of the common there which he had purchased from John Grey, esq., and Edward Widdrington respectively), the north side of Newton-on-the-Moor, Brainshaugh, and of a burgage and malt kiln in Warkworth. He mentions his second son, Edward, his third son, Samuel, his fourth son, Benjamin, and his younger sons, William, Richard, Thomas, and Joseph, and his daughters, Sarah and Jane. He charges his various estates with annuities payable to his wife, and orders his eldest son, John Cook, to allot to his mother a convenient chamber in Amble New-hall, where she shall enjoy the malt kiln and the Sloe Wickett-close in lieu of her jointure made at her marriage.
    The house at New-hall, which was probably built after Edward Cook had acquired the estate, was a long fronted structure standing a little to the east of the present homestead ; it had panelled rooms and good gardens, but having become ruinous was taken down between 1833 and 1844. The pedigree of the Cook family may be more conveniently reserved for the account of Togston, where was their principal residence. Amble New-hall was sold in 1833 by Mr. Isaac Cookson, the husband of Mr. Cook's only daughter and heiress, to Mr. James Dand of Hauxley, who by will gave the eastern half to his eldest son, Mr. Robert Dand of Gloster-hill, and the western half, with the homestead, to his second son, Mr. James Dand of Togston, and with their respective descendants the moieties remain.
    Several members of the family of Widdrington of Hauxley held the office of bailiff of Amble, whilst the manor was in the Crown. Robert Widdrington seems to have enfranchised his patrimonial copyhold lands in 1632, and to have extended his estate in Amble by subsequent purchases until, in 1663, he owned three fourteenth parts of the township. The Widdrington estate, which at the end of the eighteenth century comprised about 280 acres, was sold in 1807 by order of the Court of Chancery, and was purchased by Edwards Werge of Horton in Glendale. Werge, after selling off at various times certain outlying portions which lay in proximity to the river and to the village of Amble, in 1820 conveyed the remainder, which comprised the farm of Amble Moor-house, to Mr. James Dand of Chevington Wood-side, who gave it by will to his youngest son, Mr. M. H. Dand, the present proprietor.
    The Smith family has held lands in Amble continuously from the reign of Elizabeth to the present day. Their homestead stood in the lane leading from the village street to the south towards Hauxley, but of the house nothing is left except some old walls. The following is the inventory of the goods of Roger Smith, who appears to have died of the plague which ravaged Northumberland in the closing years of Elizabeth's reign :


   1602, 24th July. Inventory of Roger Smith, late of Ambell, praysed by William Taylor, John Clerk, Thomas Hudson, and Robert Hudson.
    Imprimis: 2 oxen, 40s.; 3 kine and 2 calves, £3 ; 1 browne mayre, 20s.; 1 pott, 1 caldron, and 1 almrye, 21s. ; 2 pannes, 2 quishyones, and 6 peecs of pouter, 8s. ; 2 lynen sheattes, 2.. . . sheattes, and a harden sheatte, 8s. 8d.; 4 boolles of wheat and a keninge, 26s. 8d.; 2 boolles and a keninge of bigge, 10s.; 7 boolles of oottes, 21s. Summa, £10 15s. 4d.
    Debts. Imprimis: in rentes due to her majestie, 22s. 3d.; to Thomas Scrogges for ane oxe, 22s. 4d.; to Robert Thompson for ane oxe, 12s.; for haye, 6s.; for the grassinge of 6 oxen, 4s. ; for clensinge of the house, 7s. 6d.; for half stoane of woollen . . . , 3s. 4d. ; in servauntes wages, 20d.; for reaping of the corne, 10s. Some, £4 9s. 1d. Som total, the debts being deducted £6 6s. 3d.
     A note of the corne that did growe in Amble on the farmeholde that was Roger Smythe, lat deceased. Imprimis: ther was In booles of wheat and rye that year, which did com to account 12 booles of wheat and rye. Item of otes, 17 booles. Item of bege, 5 booles. Of this corn there was given firste to Jenet Smythe to be seed out of part, 4 booles of wheat and a boole of rye and 6 booles of otes out of part, and 3 bushels of begg out of part, this corn was given of the whole to Jenet Smith to be seed. Moreover and besyd Jenet Smyth took away a rigg of wheat which was sowinge for seed that Edward Patterson had no part of, and three keninges of beg that she sent awaye to Newcastle with Thomas Smyth, and she had al her nysesytes in the tym of ye visitaceoon.


    On the 14th of January, 1656, Henry Horsley of Milburn Grange executed a deed in which he declared that certain lands which were conveyed to Henry Lawson and himself by Sir William Hewitt were held in trust for William Smith. The estates of Amble and Togston passed in regular descent from father to son until the death of Mr. T. G. Smith in 1862, when, under his will, the reversion was given to his kinsman, Mr. Edward Maule Lawson, second son of the Rev. Edward Lawson of Longhurst, who assumed the additional name of Smith, and is the present owner.
    The lands for which William Reed was rated in 1663, and which gave a vote to Robert Reed at the election of 1722, passed under his will dated the 13th of April, 1720, to his nephew, John Taylor, and were absorbed in his estates.  John Hudson was one of the copyholders who, in 1631, enfranchised their lands, and though his name does not appear in the rate book of 1663, the massive head of the low browed doorway of a strongly built house, which still stands in the main street, bears the initials and date of:
R. M.


     Ralph Hudson in 1774 voted for lands in Amble, which were subsequently conveyed by Tibby Hudson to John Turner, who voted for the same at the contested election of 1826.
     George Browell was one of the complainants in the suit heard in the Court of Exchequer in 1615, and his name appears in the list of copyholders in 1628. Edward Browell was party to a conveyance in 1650 of 4 acres of land in Amble fields to Robert Widdrington of Hauxley, and he was proprietor of about a fourteenth part of the township in 1633. On the 24th of March, 1723, Edward Browell, son and heir of Gerard Browell, conveyed his lands in Amble to Alexander Johnston of Newcastle, chapman, who was succeeded by his son, William Johnston of Newcastle, merchant. In 1765 William Johnston Temple of Berwick, son of William Temple of the same place, by Sarah, his wife, who was sister of the above-named William Johnston, sold the lands in Amble purchased by his grandfather, to Ralph Lambton of Sunderland, who, two years later, conveyed the same to Martin Taylor. William Johnston Temple subsequently became vicar of St. Gluvias, in Cornwall, and was the paternal grandfather of the present archbishop of Canterbury. Persons bearing the name of Browell still reside at Warkworth.
    The homestead of the Bullock family stood, and their house still stands, at the west end of the village street. In 1629 Robert Bullock was the lessee of the manor house, and his name appears as a tenant of the lands conveyed in 1630 from Sir William Hewitt to Lawson and Horsley. His holding was evidently but a small one, and is not mentioned in the rate book of 1663, but Robert Bullock, a freeholder in Amble, died on the 17th of December, 1698, and was buried in Warkworth churchyard. He was succeeded by his son, George Bullock, who was buried on the 2nd of January, 1728/9. On the 5th of February, 1730, Thomas Todd of Hilton, and Jane, his wife, and John Fawcus of Amble Hope-house, and Dorothy, his wife (which Jane and Dorothy were the two daughters of George Bullock, blacksmith, deceased), sold their lands in Amble to Thomas Smith of Togston and John Taylor of Amble. Smith and Taylor by deed dated the 15th of February, 1745, agreed to divide not only the lands so purchased, but their patrimonial lands which lay intermixed with one another  'rig and rein.'
     Both Edward and Barbara Taylor of Amble were complainants in the trespass suit heard before the Court of Exchequer in 1615, and Robert Taylor's name appears in the list of copyholders in 1630. In 1663 John Taylor was proprietor of a fourteenth part of the township. About the year 1720 John Taylor succeeded to the lands of his uncle, Robert Reed (subject to the life interest of the testator's widow, Dorothy Reed), and in 1767 Martin Taylor purchased from Ralph Lambton the estate previously belonging to Johnston and Temple, which had at an early date belonged to Browell. What is known of the family is set out in the following pedigree :



Taylor Pedigree Amble Northumberland


(a) Warkworth Register. (c) Tynemouth Register. (e) Ibid. (Miss Lamb).
(b) Mr. Clutterbuck's Commonplace  Book. (d) Amble Deeds (the late Dr. Currie) (f) Felton Register.
    (g) Mr. E. Lawson-Smith's Deeds.
* 1689, May 5. `Martin Taylor of Newham and Ja............. etson of Gloster-hill'  mar. Warkworth Register.


      Mr. Alexander Wellwood Rattray, the representative of the Taylor family, in 1875 sold his estate by auction for about £15,000 : the residence known as Amble house was purchased by the late Dr. Currie (who devised it to his wife), and the farm of Amble Link-house was purchased by the trustees of the will of Mr. T. G. Smith of Togston.
     The proceedings in the Court of Exchequer in 1615, already referred to, were largely the result of the gradual changing of the course of the river Coquet, which resulted in a tract of ground some 16 acres in extent being subtracted from the south and added to the north side of the stream. This gradual and natural variation was interfered with in 1765, when by a more violent process the river left its old course and broke another and shorter way through the links at a point intermediate between the river mouth and the place where it now flows into the sea. Since 1765 the river mouth has very slowly and gradually worked southward.
     In 1837 an Act of Parliament was obtained and commissioners were appointed for the purpose of improving the mouth of the river and forming a harbour. After the consideration of various schemes, plans submitted by Mr. John Murray were adopted on the advice of Sir John Rennie ; these plans, with certain modifications and additions, have been carried out at a cost of over £200,000. The engineering works comprise the construction of two heavy stone piers (one on either side of the river's mouth), which confine the entrance to the harbour to a width of about 250 feet and the straightening and deepening of the river and the erection of a line of quays and of shipping berths upon the south side. The import trade is inconsiderable, and consists of pit props, deals, and other timber. There is an export trade of bricks, fireclay, iron, herrings, etc., besides the greater part of the coal raised by the Broomhill and Radcliffe Coal Companies.

     In 1869 the townships of Amble, Hauxley, with Coquet Island, Gloster-hill, and part of Togston were severed from the ecclesiastical parish of Warkworth and constituted an ecclesiastical district or parish ; the new benefice was endowed by the Ecclesiastical commissioners under the Local Claims Act, with a fraction of the great tithes of the rectory of Warkworth. A church, dedicated to St. Cuthbert, was built in 1870, and a parsonage or vicarage house in 1876. The township of Amble was constituted a local government district in 1878. The Roman Catholics began a mission by holding services at Cliff-house in 1844, but it was suspended from 1850 to 1876, and in 1879 a school chapel was built on a plot of ground on the site of the old manor house given by Mr. Charles Leslie. A Congregational chapel was built in 1848 and replaced by a new structure in 1894, and the Wesleyan Methodist Society built a meeting house in 1865, which was replaced by a larger chapel in 1891. A public school under the management of a committee of the inhabitants was provided about 1854, and a National school was built in 1872;  both are under government inspection.


Also see Amble and District


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