The parish of Newington lies in the angle between the roads from London Bridge into Kent through Peckham and into Surrey through Kennington and Streatham. The parish was called Newington St. Mary from the church, and Newington Butts from the ancient butts for archery, to distinguish it from the northern suburb of the same name. The soil is Thames alluvium with patches of gravel, and it was formerly very marshy and cut up by ditches, one of which, grandiloquently called Tigris, was passable by boats from Rotherhithe nearly to Newington Church. In 1673 there was an ordinance forbidding the shooting of royal wildfowl that flew over Larrow Moor (otherwise known as Lorrimore or Lower Moor) Pond from the royal estates. An Inclosure Award was made for Newington in 1770, inclosing commons and waste. Lorrimore was given to the lords of the manor, one tenth of Walworth Common to the rector, nine tenths to the overseers to reduce the poor rate.
Quote:From: 'Newington Butts', The Environs of London: volume 1: County of Surrey (1792), pp. 389-398.NEWINGTON BUTTS.
This place is not mentioned in the Conqueror's Survey, but a church at Walworth is there noticed; whence it seems probable, that at the re-building of that church upon a new site it was surrounded with houses, which obtained the appellation of Neweton, as it is called in all the most ancient records. It was afterwards spelt Newenton, and Newington. There is little doubt but that it received its additional name from the butts placed there for archers to shoot at. The first record, in which it is written Newington Butts, is dated 1558 (fn. 1) . In Henry VIII.'s time butts were set up in the fields near London by authority. There are two patents printed at large in Wood's Bowman's Glory; the one of James I. and the other of Charles I. by which those monarchs ordained that the butts, which had been destroyed in consequence of the inclosures, should be restored as they were in the reign of Henry VIII. (fn. 2) .
Situation, boundaries, extent, &c.
Newington Butts lies in the eastern division of Brixton hundred, at the distance of about a mile from London Bridge. It is bounded by the parish of Lambeth on the west; by that of St. George, Southwark, on the east and north; and by Camberwell on the south. The parish is of very small extent. The land, which is not covered with houses, consists of little more than three hundred acres, about a third part of which is occupied by market gardeners. The remainder is for the most part pasture; the soil, sand and gravel. The parish is assessed 907l. 1s. 8d. to the land-tax, which is at the rate of 1s. 2d. in the pound.
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