Data Collated by Mary Mason.


Holy Trinity dates back, in parts to the 13th century.

St. Mary, Leigh Wood, foundation stone laid in 1891.


“On the brow of the hill, southeastward from St. George`s, and in the road thence to Bristol, stands the village of Abbots-Leigh, so called for distinction from the other Leighs, in this County, and because it formerly belonged to the abbots of St. Augustine in Bristol. A great part of the hill to the south and southwest if hence denominated Leigh-Down, being an uncultivated plain, covered with a fine sheep feed; but the soil is so thin, that, in many places the rock lies bare for a considerable space. That part of the parish which lies towards the north is almost one continued ridge of limestone rock, covered with wood; the lofty and precipitous sides of which form a fine amphitheatre from the water.”

                                                                                                                                                                                                Reverend John Collinson. 1791.


The manor of Leigh at the time of the Conquest belonged to the lordship of Bedminster.

1549 May 25th. By deed, Bishop Paul Bush surrendered to the King the manor of Abbot`s Leigh; and Sept. 23rd following, the King granted the reversion of it, after the death of the Bishop, to Sir George Norton, Knight and his heirs for ever.


1559 Paul Bush, Bishop of Bristol died.


1611 Quarter Sessions at Taunton.

A letter dated from Abbotts Leigh the 13 of January, from Samuel Newton, esqr. to the Justices of Wells, stating that he had been requested by his neighbour, Mr Thomas Morgan, to certify great misdemeanours both in words and actions done against him, his wife, his son and heir, and divers other of the best of the parish by Thomas Robbes and Mary his now wife.


1615 Sessions at Taunton.

On the petition of Margaret Thayer of Abbots Leigh that she hath been married to her husband John Thayer for twenty-three years wereby he got all the living and maintenance he hath, which he holdeth for his life only and hath thereby much increased his estate, yet not withstanding he (by some ill imagination and conceits against his wife by the setting on of some lewd persons) hath threatened to destroy his wife and hath sold away all his goods and let out the said living, whereby the said Margaret is by reason of her age in a miserable estate and had perished for want of food had not John Priest, who married her daughter, relived her, he also not receiving part of the living promised to him on his marriage.

Referred to Sir Edward Gorges, Knight, to examine the causes above specified, and to order and determine the same. And if John Thayer refuses to perform such order, to bind him over to the next Sessions to answer the premises.


1623 Sessions at Taunton.

The difference between the parishes of Abbot’s Leigh and Wraxall touching the settling of Robert Whatley is referred to John Poulet, John May, Richard Davies and Richard Cole; esquires, or to any three of them, whom this court doth desire to take some pains in the examination, and to end it if they can; or otherwise to certify their opinions at the next sessions.


1623 Sessions at Bridgwater.

Certificate from John Powlett, Richard Davies and Richard Cole, esquires, that in the case of the settling of Robert Whatley, Sir Robert George undertaking for Wraxall and George Norton, esquires for Abbot’s Leigh to stand to their order, by ancient evidence it appeareth that a water-mill, wherein the said Whatley late dwelt, is within the parish of Wraxall, and therefore he shall be relived by that parish.


1637 Sessions; William Mascoll of Abbotts Leigh, gent, who was bound over to these Sessions for refusing to take the oath of the office of  Constable within the hundred of Portbury, to be excempted from serving the office; and that Mathew Coxe of Flaxburton should take upon him the office of a Constable for the use of the said hundred of Portbury for this year to come, if it be made appeare to William Capell, Esqr that the said Mathew Coxe is a continual inhabitant within the said hundred, but if he were not a continual inhabitant then the said William Mascoll should take the said office upon him, and take the oath.


1658 Sir George Norton born.


The manor of Abbot`s Leigh later passed into the hands of the Trenchard family after the three children of Sir George Newton died without issue. William Trenchard of Cutteridge in the County of Wilts married Ellen daughter and coheir of George Norton and sister of Sir George Norton.

The Norton`s and Trenchard families are buried in the Chancel of Abbot`s Leigh Church. 


“Leigh Woods: It was at his house in these woods that Sir George Norton sheltered Charles 11 after his flight from the Battle of Worcester. He had ridden pillion with Jane Lane for three days, disguised as her servant, and after a rest in Warwickshire had come to Abbots Leigh, arriving at Leigh Court to find its owner willing to entertain a stranger in distress. They entertained him unawares, but the King was recognised by the butler, who had served him as a boy at Richmond. At the Restoration Charles made his host a Knight, and here in the Chancel is the Knights elaborate monument set up by his wife.”

                                                                                                                                                                                                            The Kings England. Arthur Mee.



1828 Death at Abbots Leigh, after a long and painful illness, Thomas Protheroe, aged 75 years. Bristol Gazette.

1832 Dec 8th Marriage. At Abbots Leigh, the Rev. Henry S. Lloyd, youngest son of the late Francis Lloyd, Esq. of Domgay, in the County of Montgomery, and of Leaton Knolls, Salop. to Elizabeth eldest daughter  of Philip John Miles Esq. M.P. of Leigh Court, Somersetshire. The Examiner.

1839 Oct 5th. On Wednesday night, the Church of Abbots Leigh was broken into and several of the chests in the Vestry-room forced open. The sacrilegious thieves were disappointed of what they no doubt considered the principal booty, the communion plate, which for some years past has been kept in a place of great security. Bristol Mercury.

1843 Jan 6th. Death at Abbots Leigh, Caroline, wife of Robert Bright. Esq. Bristol Mercury.

1845 Mar 29. Death. Mar 22nd at Craven St, Strand, London, aged 25, Christopher Tripp George. B.B. of St. Mary Hall, in this University, and student of Lincoln`s Inn only son of Christopher George Esq of Abbots Leigh near Bristol. Jacksons Oxford Journal.

1849 Sep 19th. Marriage. On the 13th inst. At the Parish Church of Abbots Leigh, Captain Edward Somerset M.P. for the County of Monmouth and eldest son of the late Lord Somerset, to Agatha, second daughter of Wm. Miles Esq. Of Leigh Court, near Bristol, M.P. for the County of Somerset. Manchester Times.

1852 Aug 7. Accident at St Vincents Rock to Mr Clift jun by falling off the rocks, near Leigh Woods. Edward Clift, 9 years old and brother of the deceased, said they were together under the rocks on the Leigh side on Thursday evening; deceased clambered up to a height to which witness did not follow him; presently his foot slipped and he rolled down to a ledge of rock, a few yards from the base; witness went to him and finding that he was insensible procured assistance and he was taken to a tea cottage where brandy was given to him and subsequently he was taken home and thence to the Infirmary. The deceased was aged 15 years. Mr T W Fryer of the Royal infirmary said that means were used to restore him, but without avail as he died within half an hour after coming to the house; there was no fracture of any limbs, and death was caused by concussion of the brain. The Bristol Mercury.

1856 Aug 2nd. Marriage. It is some years since the little village of Abbots Leigh has worn the appearance of life and gaiety which it assumed on Thursday, upon which day Miss Emma Clara Miles third daughter of William Miles. Esq of Leigh Court and member for the Eastern Division of the County of Somerset, was united in marriage to the Hon.and Rev. James W Lascelles, fourth son of the Earl and Countess of Harewood. The bustle of preparation for the interesting ceremony has prevailed through the week, on almost every day of which there have been arrivals at the court of visitors connected with the betrothed families. The Earl and Countess of Harewood, with the Hon. Messrs and Misses Lascelles families, arrived on Monday, and on Wednesday the Right Rev. Lord Viscount Auckland, Bishop of Bath and Wells (who had consented to officiate on the occasion) and Lady Auckland reached Leigh from town. The Bristol Mercury.

1857 Sep 7th. Murderous Assault. On Wednesday morning a number of poachers were engaged in netting a piece of Barley growing in a field at Abbots Leigh. John Porter, gamekeeper to Mr William Miles. M.P. at Leigh Court, observed them, on interfering to prevent them from carrying out their unlawful proceeding, was attacked by one of them and beaten until he became senseless. A reward is offered to any person giving such information as will lead to the conviction of the person who committed the assault. Bristol Gazette.

1859 Aug 20th Death at Painswick, Glou. Alfred second son of Thomas Protheroe, Esquire of Abbots Leigh Somerset and this City aged 72 years. 


The Priory, Abbot’s Leigh

Sale by Auction of the FURNITURE and EFFECTS of Thomas Fuldge Esq. at the Priory Abbot’s Leigh, by Messrs. Fargus, on Thursday and Friday next May 17th and 18th.

Thurs. May 17th. The effects of all the principal bed-chambers, the drawing room, the dining-parlour, and the hall; also the carriages and the cow.

Fri. May 18th. The effects of the attic, library, and kitchens; the china and glass; the aloes, the camellias, azaleas, and other plants.

The sale to commence each day at twelve o’clock, and the whole to be viewed on the day preceeding, by catalogues only, which are now ready, and may be had at sixpence each at Messrs Fargus’s offices, 4 Clare Street.


1860 May.
















1860 Nov 17th John Weare of Abbots Leigh summoned for killing a pheasant, the property of Sir W. Miles M.P. on the 30th of October, was fined £2. Bristol Mercury.

1860 Nov 17th Arthur Spear of Bristol, summoned for trespassing on lands belonging to Sir W. Miles M.P. at Abbots Leigh on the 20th of October was fined £2 including costs. B. M.

1892 Sep 16 On Monday evening a very successful and enjoyable concert was given in the school-room, the room being packed. Songs were capitally rendered by Miss Grace Bright, Mr H R Miles, Mr Medley, Mr Ashley Bright and Sir Cecil Miles, Bart. Recitations were given by Mr Medley and glees were sung by the Abbott`s Leigh Choral Society, under the conductorship of Mr Hamilton Clarke. The accompaniments were played by Miss C A Bright, Mr Medley, Mrs H R Miles, Miss Grace Bright and Mr Spark. At the close of the concert the Rev. J H Brinkly called for three cheers for Miss Bright which were heartily given. It is hoped that several concerts will be given during the winter months.