Long Ashton.


Collated by Mary Mason.


“This Parish so denominated from its prolixity, adjoins to that of Bedminster westward and is three miles distant from the city of Bristol. Its situation is extremely pleasant, being chiefly a rich and wooded vale, having the lofty ridge of Dundry on the south and on the north a bleak picturesque range of hills, which, beginning at the disjointed cliffs of St. Vincent on the east, extend westward through the parishes of Leigh, Wraxal, Tickenham and Clevedon and as they pass are differently denominated.

The river Avon, over which is a ferry at a place called Rownam, separates this parish and County from Gloucestershire and Bristol. A small stream, formed by a spring, rising at Dundry, after having travelled the vale of Ashton, empties itself into the Avon near the above named passage. Another spring having its source in Barrow, composes a second rivulet, which pursues a different course, winding through Wraxal and the moors toward the Severn sea.”

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    The Reverend John Collinson, F.A.S. Vicar of Long Ashton.


Tithings belonging to the parish of Long Ashton  are Ashton-Dando, Ashton-Lions, Ashton-Philip and Ashton-Alexander.

The church is dedicated to All Saints, and was built by one of the family of Lyons. In the body of the church stood a railed tomb, which contained the remains of Thomas de Lyons the founder of the church.

Lyons Cross stood somewhere near the manor-house but the exact spot is not ascertained.


Vicars of Long Ashton.


Robert Koker living in year 1329 18th Edward 2.

John de Bradford 1344 17th Edward 3.

Richard Cook 1377 1st Richard 2.

Thos. Heynes 1428 6th Henry 6.

John Spore 1484 16th Edward 4.

Thomas Draper 1495 10th Henry 7.

Sir John Rowght 1547 1st  Edward 6.

William Parsons 1581 23rd Elizabeth.

William Parr inducted 27th Feb 1591 33 Elizabeth.

James Nicholls inducted Jul 9 1618 10th James 1.

Thomas Tucker inducted 30 Oct 1623 21st James 1.

Adam Holland inducted 19 Jan 1638 13th Charles 1.

Richard Forster inducted 31 Aug 1639 buried 15 Dec 1680.

Richard Smith inducted 1681 33 Charles 2.

Elidni Trat inducted 31 Jul 1695 buried 5 Sep 1725.

Thomas Wickham inducted 1725 buried 16 May 1754.

John Wickham inducted 13 Jul 1754 buried Mar 13 1787.

John Collinson inducted 26 Aug 1787 buried 1 Sep 1793.

Israel Lewis A.M.inducted  21 Feb 1794 buried 1 Mar 1841.

Gilbert Richard Blackburn M.A.inducted 7 Aug 1841.


1416 Fines: At Westminster in the octave of St. Hillary between William Lane master of the house of St. Mark, Bristol and John Kyng, clerio querants; and one William Waleys and Agnes his wife deforciants; for one acre of land and one rood of meadow in Asheton. William Walleys and Agnes acknowledge the right of John and quit claimed for themselves and the heirs of Agnes to him and his heirs; for this John gave them one hundred shillings of silver.


1434 Fines: At Westminster in a month of St. Michael’s day between John Inyn, knight, John Neweton, Roger Lyveden, Thomas Fisshe and Richard Clerk of Bristol merchant, querents and Thomas Boucher of Pole and Alice his wife deforciants; for a moiety of manor of Assheton, and a messuage and a carucate of land in Assheton. Thomas Boucher and Alice for themselves and the heirs of Alice acknowledged the right of Roger; for this Roger gave them two hundred mares of silver.


1439 Fines: At Westminster in the octave of St. Michael between John Seyntloo esquire, John Hody, John Fortescu, Henry Champeneys, Richard Chocke, John Whittokysmede, Nicolas Lyons, John Cuffe and John Cadbury, querents; and John Grace and Margery his wife and Walter Power of Bristol, ironmonger deforciants; for eight messuages, two carucates of land, fifteen acres and three roods of meadow, sixty acres of wood, seven pence rent and a rent of a pound of pepper and a rose and a moiety of a messuage in Asseton juxta Bristol. John Grace and Margery acknowledged the right of John Cadbury and his heirs and quit claimed for the heirs of Margery; for this John Cadbury gave them two hundred marcs of silver.


1530 John Smyth of Hertfordshire purchased the manor of Long Ashton and seated himself there. In 1532 he was sheriff of Bristol and mayor in 1547 and in 1554. He married Joan the daughter of John Parr esq. They left issue, two sons Hugh and Mathew. Hugh was born in 1530. Mathew the second son of John and heir to his brother Hugh succeeded to the estates. He married Jane eldest daughter of Thomas Tewther of Ludlow in Shropshire. Mathew and Jane had a son Hugh and a daughter Ann. Hugh married Elizabeth eldest daughter of Sir Thomas George.


1568 Under a settlement made by Hugh Biccombe in 1554 his whole estate of Timberscombe passed on his death in 1568, to his younger daughter Maud, the wife of Hugh Smith of Long Ashton, and it was by then sold to John Worth of Timberscombe, gentleman.

1574 Hugh Smyth of Long Ashton and Maud his wife, the heiress of Broomfield, had issue a daughter Elizabeth who married Edward, son and heir of William Morgan of Llantarnan, Monmouth about 1574.


1726 Sir JohnSmyth, bart, gave 5.l. yearly for ever to be distributed equally to forty poor people; 20s for preaching a sermon and 5s to the clerk yearly for ever on St. Thomas’s day.

1748 Mrs Arabella Gore gave a handsome pair of silver candlesticks for the use of the church.

1760 Mrs Anne Smyth gave a rent charge of 10p per annum, payable out of Whitchurch farm, for teaching poor children to read and knit or binding out poor children apprentices, at the discretion of the minister and churchwardens.

1770 Mrs Anne Pomroy gave 50.l the interest to be applied to such charities as Sir Hugh Smyth, bart, and his heirs should think fit.


Memorandum 1755

Whoever attempts to throw the two Bedchambers into one, over the best Parlour in the Vicarage House will endanger the Building.

Signed by me John Wickham vicar who built that part of the house in the year 1755.


The Ash trees in the church yard were planted 1757, all but two, by John Wickham vicar.


Mrs Anne Smyth daughter of Sir John Smyth Baronet left by her will ten pounds yearly for ever, payable out of some lands called Whitchurch Farm in the Parish of Whitchurch to a woman of this parish to teach girls to read, knit and sew.

Mrs Anne Smyth died 21 Dec 1760.

Dame Florence Smyth 4th daughter of Sir John Smyth and wife of Sir Jarrit Smyth Bart. Died 10 Sep 1767 and buried at Henbury Church 17th Sept.

Sir Jarrit Smith Baronet died 18 Jan 1783 and buried at Redcliff.


1791 The Rev. John Collinson F.A.S. Vicar of Long Ashton, Curate of Filton alias Whitchurch, in the County of Somerset, and Vicar of Clanfield, in the County of Oxford wrote “The History and Antiquities of the County of Somerset” in 1791 in three volumes.

The Rev. John Collinson died in 1793 and was buried 1st September aged 36 years.


Memorandum 1798

The vicarage house of Long Ashton, being in a very ruinous state, was taken down in October 1798 and immediately rebuild under an Act passed in the 17th of George the Third to promote the residence of the Parochial Clergy for the sum of Two hundred pounds raised upon the Living to effect the same.


1834 Jun 14. Death. Jun 12, at her home, at Long Ashton, in her 81st year, Mrs Weare, widow of the late John Fisher Weare Esq.


1863 Nov 21. Aaron Stephens, of Long Ashton, summoned by Mr Superintendent Jones, for riding on his cart, contrary to the statute, was fined 6s 6d including costs.


1863 Nov 21. County Court. Ball v. Merritt. Jane Ball, the plaintiff, sued Daniel Merritt, a flyman in the employ of the landlord of the Angel Inn, Long Ashton, for the recovery of 19s, alleging that she had been from Long Ashton to Backwell, and had inadvertently given him a sovereign instead of a shilling. Upon cross examination she admitted that she had had some beer, but denied that she was tipsy. Defendant denied this, and said the plaintiff and a man she had with her had been turned out of the omnibus, and they were so drunk, that on getting to Backwell they could only cry out “Maria” “Sarah” and “Jane” and that was all they could do to direct him. Plaintiff had paid the fare to the landlord on starting, and he also said she was drunk. A policeman was called in confirmation and proved that the defendant had” changed the same shilling” at the Angel Inn, and his Honour gave judgement for the defendant.


1869 Sep 18. Long Ashton nr Bristol. Mr George Nichols will sell by Auction, on the Premises on Tuesday, the 25th September 1869. All the valuable household Furniture, Plate, Linen and other effects of Mrs O`Donoghue deceased. Various other articles will appear in future advertisements and handbills.


1870 May 14. Birth. May 7 at Long Ashton, the wife of Charles Henry Lane, of a daughter, still born.


1870 Sep 24. Death of Mr Arthur Way, after a protracted and painful illness, which occurred at about seven o`clock on Monday evening at his residence, Ashton Lodge. Mr Way was an uncle of Sir Genville Smyth, Bart of Ashton Court. Mr Way was a gentleman of much ability and at the general election in 1859 contested and won, in the Conservative interest, one of the seats of the city of Bath.


1870 Sep 24. Long Ashton Petty Sessions. Four boys named Robert Hill, Edward Hill, Henry Dean and John Bessant, were charged with stealing eight rabbits the property of William Bradbury. They pleaded guilty. Dean was discharged upon his father becoming surety for his good behaviour. Bessant was sentenced to ten days imprisonment and four years in a reformatory school; and the two Hills were sent to an industrial school.

William Jones, William Lias, William Webber and Thomas Herniman were fined 5s each for trespassing in Ashton Park.


1870 Oct 29. Birth. Oct 21 at Myrtle Cottage, Long Ashton, the wife of Mr William Winscombe, of a son.


1870 Oct 29. Death. Lately at Long Ashton, Mr Jeffery Bartlett, aged 66 years.


1873 Apr 5. Edwin Cannard of Long Ashton, was summoned by Thomas Morse, gamekeeper to Sir G Smyth, Bart., with trespassing in search of game. The offence was fully proved and he was fined 28s including costs.


1878 May 27. Harriet Thomas of Long Ashton, was charged with deserting her illegitimate child on the 13th inst, whereby it became chargeable to the common fund of the Bedminster Union. Mr J H Stone, the master of the work-house, stated that the prisoner had left her child about ten days, that she was a person of bad character and that she had been in situations at Long Ashton and elsewhere, but she did not stay at any place. The Chairman told her that for the offence with which she was charged she was liable to three months imprisonment, but the sentence now would be 14 days hard labour.

Henry Marsh and James Rossiter, of Long Ashton,were summoned, for neglecting to provide sufficient elementary instruction for their children above the age of five years.

Edmund H Elton, Esq. J P was appointed chairman of the Expenditors of County Bridges for the Long Ashton division for the ensuing year.


1878 Aug 17. Henry Ham and John Shore of Long Ashton were summoned for using an engine to kill game at Long Ashton on the 24th December, on land, in the occupation of Mr Richard Harding. The bench fined Ham, who had been previously convicted £1 5s 3d, or one months hard labour; and Shore 14s 3d or 14 days imprisonment. The latter amount was paid.


1880 Nov 6.

Robert Hall, Francis Payne and George Saunders were summoned for driving carts on the highway at Long Ashton, which contained quantities each exceeding in weight 1 ton 10 cwt, contrary to the by-laws. The bench imposed a fine of 2s 6d and costs in each case, together £1 9s 6d.


1881 Jun 4. Highway Board. The first meeting of the new board of the Long Ashton Highway District was held on Monday, at the Bedminster Union Workhouse, when there were present Mr Antony Gibbs ex officlo , and the way-wardens of the several parishes in the district, one member of the board being absent. The first business was the election of the chairman for the ensuing year, and the on the motion of Mr Harding, seconded by Mr Shiner, the board unanimously elected Mr Antony Gibbs. The chairman proposed and Mr Cock seconded the appointment of Mr Stephen Harding as vice-chairman, which was carried unanimously. Messrs. W H Harford and H, O`B O`Donaghue were severally re-elected treasurer and clerk.


1882 Jun 28. Out break of Swine Fever: A meeting of the sub-committee, under the Contagious Diseases (Animals) Act 1878, for the Long Ashton division was held at the Court House. Present were Mr J Drewett, John Gage and Richmond Harding. Mr J Drewett reported that swine fever had broken out on a farm at Leigh-Court and he produced a return which stated 5 pigs out of 28 had been attacked by the disease, two of which had died. The committee ordered the other diseased to be slaughtered and buried as provided by the Act. The farms of Mr James Hurditch and Mr Joseph Rowles, at Portbury, were declared to be free from sheep scab.


1883 Sep 24 Funeral. The remains of Cecil Deere Gill, wife of Mr Charles Gill, were interred in the churchyard of All Saints on Thursday. On the coffin were placed several handsome crosses of choicest flowers and wreaths, sent by Mr Austen, gardener to Sir G Smyth, Bart; MrsO’ Donoghue, Miss Blackburne, Mrs Price, Mrs Watts and others. On leaving the church Mr R T Ward the organist, played the Dead March in “Sani”.Afterwards the ringers kindly offered and rung a muffled peal. In addition to the mourners, Mr and Mrs O’Donoghue and Miss Blackburne followed the funeral out of respected and regard for the deceased.


1885 Jan 3. John Morgan of Bedminster was summoned for riding on a timber carriage without reigns, and for leaving his wagon in the road for an unreasonable time. P C Townsend proved the first offence, which occurred at Long Ashton on December 15th and P C Horner the second, which was committed on the following day at Bedminster. For each offence he was fined 5s and costs or seven days imprisonment.


1885 Jan 3. George Wallis of Bedminster on remand for disobeying a summons was fined 47s including costs or a month, for trespassing in search of game at Long Ashton on the17th of August last.


1885 Aug 24. Andrew George Thomas and John Stockwell of Bedminster were charged on remand with stealing apples on Sunday the 16th last at Long Ashton, the property of Mr Edward Brown. The prisoners who had been in custody for five days, were discharged, as no prosecutor appeared.


1892 Sep 16. Before Mr H Cary Batten yesterday, Charles Beer and Robert Blake young men of Bedminster were charged with stealing a quantity of cut flowers, dahlias etc from the garden of Mr T N Oliver in Leigh Woods. P C Harris apprehended the prisoners with the flowers in their possession. Mr Batten remanded them on bail.


1892 Sep 24. John Jones, labourer, Greenway Bush lane, Bedminster was charged with trespassing in pursuit of game at Ashton Park, the property of Sir Grenville Smyth. Edwin Offer assistant gamekeeper, proved seeing defendant in a plantation in Ashton Park. He asked him what he was doing there and he replied “only catching a rabbit for my dinner.” He had a ferret in his possession and he was carrying a bag in which there were five rabbits. Defendant pleaded guilty, and as he had been previously convicted he was fined £1 and costs or seven days.


1892 Sep 24. John Gingell, Alfred Bridges and Thomas Clarke, youths, on strike at the Malago Vale Colliery, were summoned for stealing apples, the property of Mr R Harding, of Long Ashton, on September 17. Defendants pleaded guilty. P C Beaton stated the facts, which were to the effect that he caught the lads with the apples in their possession. Gingell was convicted of apple stealing only in August last. He was fines £1 and costs or 14 days, and the others 10s and costs or seven days. Clarke and Gingell took the alternative.


1896 Feb 15. Bernard Blinkinsop was summoned for unlawfully riding a bicycle on the footpath at Long Ashton on Jan 20th . The defendant pleaded guilty, and was fined 5s 6d including costs.

Ernest Frank Hobbs and William Caseley pleaded guilty to a similar offence at Long Ashton on Feb 6th . Hobbs was fined 5s 6d including costs and Caseley, who gave a false name, was fined 7s 6d including costs.


1899 Feb 4. On Saturday evening last eight members of the St. Stephen’s Guild visited Long Ashton and rung a peal of 5040 Siedman’s triples on the lately augmented ring of bells hung in that tower. The peal was accomplished in three hours and 13 minutes by the following members: W J Hinton, F W Elllis, C H Tomkins, J D Matthews, C H Gordon, F Prine, W A Cave and J Gpuld. The peal was accompanied by Sir Arthur Percival Heywood. Bart and conducted by Mr W A Cave.


1899 Aug 9. Birth. July 29, at the Glebe, Long Ashton, Clifton, the wife of F W Hunt, of a son.

1899 Aug 9. Marriage. Aug 7 at the Congregational Chapel, Long Ashton, by the Rev E E Greening, assisted by the Rev T W Hardisty (pastor) Frederick Thomas Alford to Ada Mary Marsh.