South Stoneham

Taken from Kelly's 1914 -1915 Directory

South Stoneham is a fertile parish that is situated on both sides of the Itchen Valley, and extends 5 to 6 miles north and east-north-east from Southampton and includes Bevois Valley and Portswood on the western of the river.

It also reaches down the east side of the Itchen, near Northam Bridge and is in the Southern division of the county, union of its own name, Mansbridge hundred, petty sessional division, county court district and rural deanery of Southampton and archdeaconry and diocese of Winchester.

The parish has no village of its own name, the church and two or three adjacent houses being situted near the village of Swaythling, which is mostly in this parish but partly in the parish of North Stoneham, and is situated on the western bank of the River Itchen with a station on the London and South Western Railway.

South Stoneham parish contains part of the village of Swaythling and tithings of Allington, Barton, Pollock, Shamblehurst and Portswood, the latter being in the borough of Southampton and now forms part of the town.

The church of St Mary, at Swaythling, bearing date of register 1663, is a small and ancient building of stone built in the Early English style and consists of chancel, nave, transepts and an embattled western tower that contains 3 bells.The church holds 340 sittings.

In the chancel there is a curious memorial to Edmond Clerke, who was clerk to His Majestie's Privy Seal and died in 1632. It represents him and his wife kneeling face to face with a desk between them, under a canopy. Below they are again represented in the same position with the sons kneeling behind the father, and daughters behind the mother, but unfortunately some of the figures have
been damaged.

The living is a vicarage, yearly value from tithe rent-charge 420, average 379, net income 289, with 20 acres of glebe and residence in the gift of the rector of St Mary, Southampton, and held since 1892 by the Rev John Duguid Paton B.A. of St Edmund Hall, Oxford.

A burial ground for this parish was opened in 1904, and contains about 5 acres. The Public Hall here was  erected by the late Sir Samuel Montague bart (afterwards Lord Swaythling) who died in 1911, and contains reading, recreation and billiard rooms.

The charities amount to 18 10s 4d. yearly, derived from benefactions in 1680 by Mr James Serle of Allington, in 1689 by the Rev John Dummer, rector of Hardwick, Bucks, by Mrs Crabbe, of Highfield, Charles Twynam, of Portswood, and by George Alexander Fullerton esq. of Westwood, who, in 1847 gave 360 in 3 per cent. Consols. The parochial charities of the ancient parish of South Stoneham are now administered by trustees, appointed by the daughter parishes, viz.: Hedgend, Westend and Bitterne. In addition to the one appointed by the Parish Council of South Stoneham.

South Stoneham House, the property and residence of Ellen, Lady Swaythling, is a mansion of  red brick with stone dressings, built during the reign of Queen Anne, and is pleasantly seated in grounds 110 acres in extent with 5 acres of water. Tankerville Chamberlayne esq. B.A. of Cranbury Park, Winchester, the trustees of the late Thomas Willis-Fleming esq. Col. Frank Willan J.P. of Burley Manor, Ringwood, Messrs. John Gater & Co., Ellen, Lady Swaythling, of South Stoneham House,  Miss Covey and Queen's College Oxford, are the principal landowners.

The chief crops are wheat, oats and barley. The soil is sandy; subsoil, gravel and clay. The area is 1,296 acres, 26 of water, 4 of tidal water and 1 of foreshore; the population in 1911 was 4,679; rateable value 9,937.