Parish of Endgate

The Parish of Endgate – extract from a letter in the East Suffolk Gazette of 16th November 1880 by FF Tracy, Rector of St Michaels Church, Beccles.

The church, which was a rectory dedicated to St Mary, and valued in the King’s Book at £7 6s 8d, stood on the south side of the town. It was taken down by order of Queen Elizabeth “for that the parishes of Beccles and Endgate had been for many years so blended together, that the bounds and limits of them could not be known, in AD 1419, when a legal agreement was made by the Bishop, Patron and Rector of both parishes, that the Rector of Beccles should have the whole tithes of both parishes and pay the Rector of Endgate £6 13s 4d per annum: so that the inhabitants of Endgate have time out of mind, been esteemed parishioners of Beccles. The order for taking down Endgate Church is dated April 25th 1577, and was granted on the following consideration, viz, that in commiseration of the charge the men of Dunwich sustained by the loss of their port, the said Queen Elizabeth gave or lent them the money arising by the sale of bells, lead, iron, glass and stone of Endgate Church in the county of Suffolk, which it appears was valued three score sixteen pounds eighteen shillings and four pence. No trace of this Church are discoverable on its site, but some fragments which have been worked into Beccles Bridge, in the course of its reparations prove it to have been an elegant structure, probably surpassing in embellishment, though not in magnitude, the Church of St Michael. A capital of one of its columns has been used for many years as a horse block at the King’s Head Inn. This fragment is octangular, with a plain moulding.

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