Website of the Laceby History Group

Laceby in 1840

One of the most complete records of the social and economic life of the village in the middle of the last century is to be found in the Tithe Apportionment records of 1840. These consist of a map and a list of all the owners and occupiers of each piece of land in the village
at that time.
 
The list was drawn up after an agreement made by all the landowners as to how much each of them would pay as a "Rent Charge" in lieu of "Tithes". These "Tithes" formed part of the Rector's annual salary. The recipient at the time was the Reverend John Birkett who had been Rector since 1833. The schedule or list attached to the agreement details the ownership, tenancy (if any), land area (in acres, rods and poles) and the "rent charge" (in pounds, shillings and pence).
 
A detailed study of these documents reveals a fascinating insight into various aspects of village life one hundred and fifty years ago. Let us look at just one aspect.
 
Major Land Ownership
Laceby covered an area of 2,037 acres and there were about 50 landowners. However just 11 landowners held over 80% (1,698) of the village. Here are some details about each of these landowners and their particular holdings which are related to the village as we knew it in 1959.
William Brooks owner 100 acres based on his own home, "Little Laceby", on the north side of Grimsby Road which remained in his family for the next 130 years. The land reached to "Ticklers Corner", opposite Alford's Nurseries and was bound by Laceby Beck. The name "Little Laceby" was originally the name of one of the Paddocks down by the side of the Beck.
John Saunderson Beatniffe owned a total of 94 acres on the south side of Grimsby Road between the Beck and the Square and stretching back nearly to Welbeck Spring where the Beck rises. Most of the land (88 acres) including Grange Farm with all its outbuildings etc. was tenanted and occupied by Robert Markham. The remaining 6 acres consisting of a paddock and smallholding alongside Laceby Beck was tenanted by Thomas Lamming.
Christopher Coates farmed 230 acres based on the farm, outbuildings and cottages at the top of the lane now known as New Road. Christopher did not live in Laceby at this time (1840), but in Great Coates where he farmed land as well as in Healing and Stallingborough. The farm buildings etc. are still in existence being Top Farm, part of Mr. Ray Mawer's Manor Farm Estate and still referred to as "Coates
Top".
Robert Cartwright owned 113 acres on the north side of Grimsby Road near to the Grimsby boundary. It was occupied and farmed by his son George Cartwright and is now known as "Walk Farm" which got its name from the two fields in front of the farm known as Laceby Walk and Grimsby Walk.

Robert Cropper owned a total of 117 acres in various parts of the village. His house, which stood on the site of Hollymount in Cemetery Road, together with its gardens, parkland and plantations covered 45 acres. It stretched from Grimsby Road to Cooper Lane and was bounded by High Street on one side and the land that is now Keith Crescent on the other. He owned a further 22 acres at Littlebeck leased to William Keyworth who occupied and farmed it. The largest holding of 71 acres, owned by Robert, was at Low Hooker, now known as Low Oaker, at the bottom of Cooper Lane which was tenanted and farmed by John Rowson.
 
Alice Cropper, the wife of Robert, owned 100 acres in her own name situated south of Barton Street on which is now situated the Oaklands Hotel and Country Club and the land farmed by the late Mr. Neville Lockwood. In 1840 this land was tenanted by Mr. William Bonner Hopkins.
 
Theophilus Harneis was the largest landowner with 282 acres of which he farmed 277 acres himself. He lived at the house now known as "The Rookery" on Grimsby Road by Laceby Beck. The farm buildings were on the opposite side of Grimsby Road on the land now occupied by the Highways Depot and Harvey Motors and the bypass. The farm lodge was situated on the land now occupied by "The Limes" on the south sid€ of the bypass .
Thomas Cartwright Johnson owned 154 acres of land adjoining Caistor Road all of which was tenanted and farmed by William Youhill whose farm building was situated on the site of the bungalows opposite the white cottages on "Pawson's Corner".
Phillip Skipworth owned and farmed 165 acres on the south side of Grimsby Road which is now known as Manor Farm and owned by Mr. Raymond Mawer.
The Stanford Charity owned 74 acres of land which had been left by Mrs. Sarah Stanford in her will as the permanent foundation of the charity established in the name of her husband, Phillip, and her name. Williarn Brewster, who was the schoolmaster at this time and lived at the Schoolhouse in the High Street, farmed 12 acres. The remaining 62 acres including College Farm in Cooper Lane were tenanted and farmed by William Keyworth.
 
Caroline Mary Thompson owned 185 acres on the north side of Caistor Road. The land and farm house were tenanted by William Rannard. The site of the farmhouse is now occupied by the Health Clinic and the Caistor Road shops and the land is now covered by the Charles Avenue Estate.
Laceby was very much an enclosed village and much of the above ownership is believed to have been in the same families for generations hence Laceby was not subject to the 1760 Enclosure Act measures which were enacted in many surrounding villages, e.g. Scartho, Grimsby,
Waltham etc., between 1763 - 1840.