A community perspective from the 1840s to 1920s contains entries for the community from the Suffolk Directories of White (1844) and Kelly (1929) and William Dutt’s gazeteer of Suffolk (1927; first prepared in the 1890s)


WISSETT, a pleasant village, in a narrow valley, on one of the tributary streams of the Blythe, 2 miles N. W. of Halesworth, has in it parish 470 souls, and 2260 acres of land. In the reign of Henry III. it was the lordship of the Earl of Richmond, and it afterwards passed to the Earl of Savoy, and from him to John de Vaux, whose two daughters and co-heirs married Wm. de Nerford and Thomas Lord Roos, or Ross. W. E. Hartopp, Esq., is lord of the manor, called Wissett le Rosse, but the greater part of the soil belongs to the Parkyns, Tacon, Wilcox, Bence, Micklethwaite, Crabtree, Chase, Calver, Crisp, Wright, Pedgrift, Aldred, Button, Pattison, and other families, some of whom have neat houses here. The parish is mostly freehold, and its gross annual rental is now estimated at £3637. The Church (St.Andrew) is a small antique fabric, with a round tower. The north entrance is under a fine Saxon arch. The east end was repaired seven years ago, and the interior was new pewerd in 1843, when a gallery was erected at the west end. Wm. Edmund Hartopp, Esq., is impropriator of the rectory, and patron of the perpetual curacy, valued, in 1835, at £I05, and now enjoyed by the Rev. Robt. Kemp, for whom a new Parsonage was built in1843, at the cost of about £700, towards which the patron gave .£200, and the Governors of Queen Anne's Bounty £200. The tithes have been commuted for yearly moduses of £452. 10s. 2d. to the impropriator, aud £90 to the incumbent. A house and garden have been vested in trust, from an early period, for the reparation of the church, and were let, in 1774, on a lease of 99 years, at the annual rent of £1. 5s. 4d., the lessee covenanting to lay out a large sum in rebuilding the house. Here is a School, supported by subscription, for the instruction of about 30 poor children.

Aldrich.Jno.bricklayer & whiting mfr ;
Algar George, tailor and shopkeeper
Barber Richard, joiner
Berry Jph. shoemaker & parish clerk
Davy Lucy, schoolmistress
Gooch Samuel, vict. Swan
Howlett Jonathan, auctioneer, etc. Hill House
Howlett and Lenny, auctioneers and estate agents
Howlett Wm. beerhouse keeper
Hufflett George, blacksmith
Keable John, corn miller
Kemp Rev. Rt. incumbent, Parsonage
Lenny Charles, auctioneer, etc.
Markham Wm. shoemaker
Pedgrif't Win. Henchman, surgeon, Wissett Place
Phillips John, gentleman
Watson Henry, blacksmith
Woods Wm. brewer and shopkeeper

FARMERS.-(* are Owners.)
*Aldred Robert
Allen Richard, Red House
* Banks Wm.
Banks Wm.
Bootman Eliz.
* Button John, Brook Hall
Chase Elizabeth
Ecclestone Jas.
Goldsmith Jas.
Mayhew Edward
Moore Jno. Robt.
Prime Philip
Self Thos. (and gardener)
Tillott Jno, Lodge
Walker John
Walker John
Winter James


WISSETT is a village and parish, a miles north-west from Halesworth station on the Ipswich and Lowestoft section of the London and North Eastern railway, in the Eye division of the county, Blything hundred, petty sessional division and union, Halesworth and Saxmundham county court district, rural deanery of North Dunwich, archdeaconry of Suffolk and diocese of St.: Edmundsbury and Ipswich. The church of St. Andrew is an ancient building of flint in the Early English style, consisting of chancel, nave, south porch and a round tower, containing 6 bells: the doorway on the north side of the nave has a remarkably fine arch of Norman work enriched with zigzag mouldings. The south doorway and many other details are also Norman, but much of the window tracery is Perpendicular: the stained windows, with emblems of the Apostles, were presented by the late Sir W. E. 0. Hartopp bart. d. 1864, at a cost of £100: the church was re-roofed, re-seated and re-floored in 1924-5, at a cost of £1,000: there are 150 sittings. The register dates from the year 1558. The living is a vicarage, united with the rectory of Spexhall, joint net yearly value £403, with residence, in the gift of the Lord Chancellor, who has two turns, and the Church Patronage Society, which has one turn, and held since 1929 by the Rev. Arthur Trousdale, of the London College of Divinity, who resides at Spexhall. The Congregational chapel was built in 1841. Bleach Farm is an old building surrounded by a moat. Wissett Hall is the residence of Walter Scrimgeour esq. H. O. Hollway-Calthrop esq. J.P. is lord of the manor and owner of about one-fourth of the land. The soil is mixed clay; subsoil, principally clay. The chief crops are wheat, barley, beans, oats and roots. The area is 2,181 acres; the population in 1921 was 349. By a Local Government Board Order, March 25th, 1884, some portions of this parish were amalgamated with Chediston.

Parish Clerk, William Kemp. Post Office. Letters through Halesworth, which is the nearest M. O. & T. "office '
County Police Station


Wissett church (2 m. N.W. of Halesworth) has a round tower, Norm N. and S. doorways, and other remains of Norm. work.