Huggate - the highest village on the Yorkshire Wolds

This text is reproduced from the pamphlet



(The original pamphlet is still available for loan from local libraries. A revised edition is on sale in the Church)


The Church and Parish of HuggateThe Church of St Mary (formerly All Saints or All Hallows) was given by Forne, son of Sigulf, to St Mary’s Abbey, York, about 1150. The abbey held the patronage up to the time of its dissolution. The chancel arch and nave are Transitional (13C) with Perpendicular (15C) clerestories. The 14C tower and stone spire are c1340. The 2 windows in the east end of the nave are Norman, but not in original situ. The church was restored in 1864.The registers, some of which are printed, date from 1539, the originals being deposited at the Borthwick Institute, York.


Huggate ManorIn 1086 Huggate lay waste. The King had 8.5 carucates of land held by Baret TRE (in the time of Edward the Confessor - tempore Regis Edwardi ). Ernuin the Priest, the King’s thegn, had 8 carucates in Huggate, held by Ingride TRE.By the 12C, the King’s land had been granted to Robert Fossard, and the land of Ernuin the Priest to Forne, son of Sigulf, ancestor of the Greystokes and the de Mandervilles.A greater part of the Fossard land (including Haywold, which was held of them by the Hay family) was granted to the nuns and their brethren of Watton Abbey. In 1316 the Prior of Watton is given as Lord of Huggate.Since the dissolution of the monasteries the Manor of Huggate has been held by several non-resident Lords, the present Lord of the Manor of Huggate being the owner of Huggate Wold.


Haywold ManorIn Domesday Book 1086 the King held 5 carucates of land and the Archbishop of York held 1 carucate at Haywold (Holde.) Haywold was held TRE by Grim and Ingrede. The King also held 1 carucate there as part of the Manor and Soke of Warter, which was granted in the 12C to Warter Priory. In 1154 William Fossard, when about to take his way to Jerusalem, granted 3 carucates in Haywold to Watton Priory.The Anderson family of Kilnwick Percy and Lea, Lincolnshire, acquired the manor of Haywold by marriage into the Wood family in the 17C, and held it until 1913, when it was bought by Richard Holtby Stocks. He sold it to Sir Prince Prince-Smith in 1925.1086 - Domesday Book referred to Huggate being “waste”, and neither church nor priest was mentioned.


Enclosure of Huggate 1767/73Before enclosure, the open fields were

The two great arable North and South fields

-  Forby or Odd lands

- Oxpasture, Cowpasture & the Tongue

All three together totaled 5810 acres, 1 rood and 34 perches. There were 62 common right messuages and cottages. In 1773 Wm Tufnell Joliff, the Lord of the Manor, was awarded 4,432 acres, Hemsworth Hospital 558 acres, the rector received 318 acres in lieu of tithes and Sir William Anderson 184 acres in Huggate Manor. Other substantial allotments went to various members of the Cross and Newlove families, whilst the poorer cottagers received nothing and also lost their common rights.In Medieval times, the two arable fields, (divided into strips or “oxgangs”) laid in a dispersed manner in several falls and with commons, common of pasture for horses, cows, sheep, calves and oxen in the manner and number as by ancient custom of Right Appertaineth.The Manor Court regulated the way that the land was farmed, the observance by all of the customs, and imposed fines for any breach of the Rules e.g. “None shall cast any carrion in or near the highways or in the Church Yard or in the Nearrs or in any mans garth or close on pain for every default - one shilling.



Church Ornaments1661William Mason, Rector, was careful to restore to the church ornaments that had been lost or destroyed under Puritan rule following the Civil War.On Christmas Day, 1663, he gave “a black hood or tippet (lived with silk) now used by the minister during time of divine service and administration of ye Sacrament for ye more decent performance of divine service in ye parish church of Huggate…”“The flagon now used in the parish church of Huggate at ye Lord’s Supper was given for that purpose by ye said William Mason, 25 Feb 1663.”He writes in the Register that “ye oak-table leafe which now covereth ye communion table was given by Jane Kirby, alias Kerkby, by her last Will and Testament, for ye use of ye parish of Huggate for ever at ye Holy Sacrament ye said leafe being provided by Emmot Newlove, her executrix, in performance of ye Will aforesaid and delivered to George Cross, churchwarden, on ye 17 Nov 1661.”“That the pewter basin for ye churchwardens’ use in collection of ye alms for ye poor at ye communion and other times was bought at ye charge of Wm Mason, Clerk, Rector.”Unfortunately, none of the above items has survived.

The Bells of St Mary’s1523 - The Rector, the Revd Hugo Eure, by his will left to the church of Huggate and chancel, either of them, ten shillings to repairell of the Bells there ten shillings and he requested that “a priest be found for to syng for me in the south aisle of Huggate church.”1665 - The Register records: “Both the bells in the steeple of Huggate were cast anew by Mr Samuel Smith of York, bellfounder, at Beverley in March 1665, for which work, with taking down, carrying and re-carrying he had ye sum of £17 sterling: it cost ye parish over and above ye said sum £6-1-7d for new wheels, ropes and other accessory charges touching ye same, for raising of which sums ye churchwardens (by consent of ye inhabitants and occupiers od land in ye township) were enabled for three years next coming to sett and lett Beastgates on ye several pastures till ye same were raised, except £3 of which xls (40 shillings) were freely given by Mr Edward Anderson, Lord of Haywold cum pertinentiis and xxs (20 shillings) by Wm Mason, Rector of ye church towards ye sd charge.”1907 - The bells were re-cast by John Taylor & Co, belfounders of Loughborough, at a cost of £45-9-6d, after credit being given for two old bells.These present bells are inscribed:No 1: Venite Exultimus Domino Anno Dom 1665Caroli II RegisNo 2: Be merciful to me O God Dalton of York 1791(There is no record regarding the installation of the 1791 bell - it probably replaced one of the old bells referred to above.)In 1726 Mrs Francis Barker (Rector Mason’s daughter) left fifty pounds, the income from which was for poor relief and for the education of poor children of Huggate. However, between 1730 and 1764 no schoolmaster was appointed. In 1819, three schools are recorded here. By 1868 there was the National school, now incorporated with the former school house into one dwelling.Dissenters (probably Methodists) were meeting at the house of Ann Cross in 1776. There was a Methodist chapel in 1823, now two cottages lying to the north of “Tailor’s Cottage”, with a larger chapel built on Driffield Road about 1886. A Primitive Methodist chapel was erected on the lower village green in 1840, on land given by the Lady of the Manor. Joseph Smith, a noted local preacher in the Wesleyan Methodist tradition, lived at Eastlands, Huggate, from 1873 - 1883.


ALSO AVAILABLE: A GLIMPSE OF THE PAST, containing more information about the church building and some past rectors, is on sale in the Church.


High Wolds Heritage Group

The High Wolds Heritage Group was formed in August 2007. 

The ‘High Wolds’ is a distinctive area of the Yorkshire Wolds where there are deep valleys carved between the high rolling hills. 

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