Ladykirk


Ladykirk
   1) LADYKIRK, a parish, in the county of Berwick, 6 miles (N. E. by N.) from Coldstream; containing, with the villages of Horndean and Upsetlington, 504 inhabitants. This place originally consisted only of the parish of Upsetlington, of which the name is of very uncertain derivation. It appears to have acquired a considerable degree of importance at an early period; and during the disputed succession to the crown of Scotland, towards the close of the thirteenth century, a meeting took place here between eight of the competitors, attended by several of the Scottish prelates and nobility, and Edward I. of England, for the purpose of investigating their several claims, and more especially for settling the feuds of Bruce and Baliol. In 1500, a new church was erected by James IV., and dedicated to the Virgin Mary; the parish then took the name of Ladykirk, and its former appellation has since been confined to the village that had risen up around its ancient church. Soon after the treaty of Cateau Cambresis, a supplementary treaty was concluded here by the English and Scottish commissioners, for which purpose they met in the church of St. Mary; and on the same day the duplicates were interchanged at Norham Castle. The present parish, which includes the suppressed parish of Horndean, annexed to it at the time of the Reformation, is four miles in length and one and a half in average breadth; and is bounded on the north by the parish of Whitsome, on the east by that of Hutton, on the south by the river Tweed, and on the west by the parish of Swinton. The surface is generally level, diversified only by a few eminences which attain no considerable elevation, and in some parts sloping gently towards the banks of the Tweed.
   The soil is various, but fertile; the whole number of acres is estimated at 3100, of which about three-fourths are arable, fifty acres in plantations, and the remainder in meadow and pasture. The crops are, grain of all kinds, potatoes, and turnips; the system of husbandry is advanced, the farm houses and offices well built and commodious, and all the more recent improvements in agricultural implements in use. Great attention is paid to live stock, for which the pastures are peculiarly favourable. The cattle are mostly the short-horned, and have been much improved by the introduction of some of the finest specimens of the Durham breed: of the cattle reared here several have been sold for very high prices, and one bull for 1000 guineas. The sheep are all of the Leicestershire breed, and are in high estimation for their quality and the fineness of their wool. The woods consist chiefly of oak and plane, which appear to be best adapted to the soil; and the plantations of Scotch and spruce firs, intermixed with various kinds of forest-trees. The substrata are, on the banks of the river, compact micaceous sandstone alternated with schistose, marl, and limestone of inferior quality; and in other portions of the parish, sandstone of the old red formation. No quarries, however, have been opened hitherto. The rateable annual value of the parish is £4430. The only mansion in the parish is Ladykirk House, a handsome modern residence. A salmon-fishery on the Tweed is carried on at three several stations; but it is not so lucrative as formerly, and the whole rental does not exceed £100 per annum. An annual fair is held on the 5th of April, for the sale of linen and lintseed; and facility of communication with Coldstream, Berwick, and other places, is maintained by good roads. A post between this place and Berwick has a delivery daily.
   The ecclesiastical affairs are under the superintendence of the presbytery of Chirnside and synod of Merse and Teviotdale; patron, the Crown. The stipend of the incumbent is £171: the manse, recently repaired and enlarged, is a very convenient and comfortable residence; the glebe comprises eleven acres and a half of profitable land, valued at £33 per annum. The church is a handsome cruciform structure in the decorated English style of architecture, but has been greatly disfigured by injudicious alterations and additions; and the general effect of the interior, originally of lofty proportion and elegant design, has been destroyed by the partitioning off a portion of it for a schoolroom. It is adapted for a congregation of 300 persons. There is a place of worship for Burghers. The parochial school is well attended; the master has a salary of £34. 4. 4., with a house and garden, and the fees average £25 per annum. There are some very slight vestiges of an ancient monastery on the bank of the Tweed, below the village of Upsetlington, in a place still called the Chapel Park; and near them are three springs of excellent water, called respectively the Nuns', the Monks', and St. Mary's well. Numbers of cannon balls have been found in a field opposite to Norham Castle, a celebrated fortress situated on the south side of the river, in England.
   2) LADYKIRK, county of Orkney.

A Topographical dictionary of Scotland. . 1856.

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