SLAPTON, a pleasant village on the acclivity, rising from the central part of the coast of Start Bay, 6 miles S.W. by S. of Dartmouth, has in its parish 726 inhabitants, 3260 acres of tithe free land, and many scattered houses, commanding fine views of the bay and coast. On the beach is the Sands Hotel, from which visitors have a fine promenade at low water along the sands to within a mile of Start point. The hotel is elegantly fitted up for the accommodation of visitors, and about 200 yards from the beach is a long fresh-water lake of about 300 acres, called the Ley or Hey, well stocked with fish and wild fowl, and divided from the sea in some places only by a ridge called the Long Sand. The manor is dismembered, and was formerly held of the See of Exeter, by the service of being steward at the bishop’s installation feast. Sir R. L. Newman, Bart., Major Bent, and the Paige, Tucker, Holdsworth, Bastard, Wise, Wakeham, and other families have freehold estates here. Pole or Poole Priory, in this parish, was long the seat of the Brians, Ameridiths, and Hawkins, and now belongs to Mr. Paige. The ruins of the old mansion were removed about 1800, except the lofty tower, which stands in the garden. The Church (St. Mary,) is an ancient structure, with a tower and five bells. The screen is beautiful, and the clustered columns have foliated capitals. The living is a perpetual curacy, valued at only £96 per annum, arising from a modus of £15, and land here and at Halwell. Wm. Page, Esq., is the patron, and the Rev. T. G. Dickenson, M.A., is the incumbent. In 1373, Sir Guy de Brian founded a collegiate chapel, near the church, for a rector, five fellows, and four clerks. It was dissolved in 1545, when its revenues were valued at £63. 6s. 2d., and granted to Thomas Arundell. The college estate now belongs to W. Paige, Esq. In 1690, John Kellond left £100, to be invested for the eduacation of 20 poor children f this parish. His son, Charles Kellond, gave £50, to be applied in apprenticing a poor child yearly. These legacies were not paid till 1746, when they were recovered, with £205 as arrears of interest. The whole was then laid outin the purchase of 19A. 3R. 21P. of land, let for £28 per annum. The errection of a school is in contemplation.
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