Brookthorpe is a township, parish, and village, 4 miles south from Gloucester station, 4 ½ north-north-west from Stroud, 12 south-south-west from Cheltenham, and 2 ½ north-west from Painswick, in the middle division of the Hundred of Dudstone and King’s Barton, Wheatenhurst Union, West Gloucester electoral division, Gloucester archdeaconry, and Rural deanery, and Gloucester and Bristol bishopric. It is situated on the high road from Stroud to Gloucester. The church of St. Swithin is an ancient stone building in the first pointed or early English style of the 13th century; it has been partially restored, and a new vestry built; it consists of nave, chancel, and south porch. The tower, a good example of the saddle-back type – figured in “Parker’s Glossary of Architecture” – contains 2 bells, one of early 14th century date, with the legend – “Eternis in annis resonet campana Johannis.” In cornice of south porch, rudely cut, is this curious chronogram –
“Ter Deno IanI Labens reX sole CaDente = 1212
CaroLVs eXVtVs soLIo sCeptroqVe seCVre.” = 436
Year of the Martyrdom 1648
There is also a clock, and modern stone font. The living is a vicarage, worth £175 yearly, with residence, erected 1846, and 1 ½ acre of glebe land in the parish, 20 acres in the parish of Hartpury, and 3 ½ acres in the parish of Ashelworth; – in the gift of the Dean and Chapter of Gloucester, and J. Neeld, Esq., M.P. The parish of Brookthorpe was united with Whaddon for all ecclesiastical purposes, under the present incumbent, in 1843; the Rev. Francis T. Bayly, B.A., is the incumbent. Here is a Parochial school for boys and girls supported by subscription. The soil is clayey; geological formation – blue lias, with occasional beds of gravel – detritus from the inferior oolite. The Rev. S. R. Maitland, D.D., is lord of the manor and chief landowner. The population is 191, with 1,009 acres.
Cambridge, Brook, Springs, Spillman’s, Upper and Lower Wells are farms.
Post Office. – Ellis James, postmaster. Letters arrive from Gloucester at 11 a.m.; dispatched at 4 p.m. The nearest money order office is at Gloucester.
Parochial School (for boys & girls), Miss Ellen Walter, mistress.
Bayly Rev. Francis Turnour, B.A. Vicarage
Cambray Miss Harriet
Eastcourt Mrs. Mary
Wrenford Mr. Thomas
Browning Charles Henry, farmer, Court
Carter William, farmer, Cambridge frm
Freeman Job, boot & shoe maker
Harris James, butcher, Brookthorpe hll
Hawkins Mrs. farmer, Chambers farm
James Ellis, carpenter & postmaster
Jenner Thomas, farmer & butcher
Mills Miles, nailer
Ratcliffe John, farmer, Brook farm
Shewell Thomas, farmer, Springs farm
Smith Henry, farmer, Spillmans
Smith Samuel, farmer, Upper Wells
Walter Charles, farmer, Lower Wells
Walter Ellen (Miss), mistress of Parochial school
Walter Thomas, parish clerk
Source: Post Office Directory of Gloucestershire with Bath and Bristol. Printed and Published by Kelly and Co., 19, 20 & 21, Old Boswell Court, St. Clement’s, Strand, London. 1856.