Noake's Worcestershire Page 233


Kington and Dormstone.

A BRACE of parishes lying some eight or ten miles east of Worcester, which have always been associated as twins, but for what reason is not known. The populations limited and straggling, there being about 172 inhabitants in Kington and something under 100 in Dormstone. Mr. Laslett, a few years ago M.P. for Worcester, purchased of the late Thomas Bowater Vernon the rectory, the lordship, and about 600 acres in Kington, which, with the laud previously bought by him, constitutes the greater part of the parish. He is also the patron and the principal landowner in Dormstone. The Rev. C. R. Evors is rector of the former, and Rev. S. L. Francis perpetual curate of the latter. Kington is what is called a " discharged rectory," value only 100; while Dormstone, a "perpetual curacy exonerated," is but about 50! If both livings were held by the same gentleman (as they should be) he would be by no means a subject for envy as a pluralist! The tithes of Kington were commuted for corn rents by an Act of enclosure in 1781, and under the Tithe Act a rent charge of 4 was awarded; there are seventeen acres of glebe, but no house fit for residence. At Dormstone the tithes were commuted for land and a money payment in 1790. In the two parishes there are about 2,000 acres. The populations have not doubled since the days of Queen Elizabeth.

The history of the places is but a record of the change of owners. In Norman days Kington belonged to Roger de Lacy, and Dormstone was held of the Abbot of Westminster by William, the son of Corbucion. The church of the latter place was appropriated to the prior of Studley, and after the suppression it fell successively to the Sheldons, Gardners, &c.