Birlingham is a small, retired village and parish, almost surrounded by the river Avon, in the Upper Division of the Hundred of Pershore, from which place it is distant about 3 miles S.S.W., 6 E. from Upton, 11 S.E. from Worcester, about a mile N.E. from the Eckington station, and about the same distance E. from the Defford station of the Birmingham and Bristol Railway. It contained in 1851 a population of 370 inhabitants, and an area of 1210 statute acres.
There are several delightful residences in this parish, amongst which we may mention the elegant mansion of the Misses Porter; the Court House, occupied by Mrs. E. H. Risdon; and the residence of Mr. Joseph Woodward.
The Church, dedicated to St. James, is a very handsome stone structure, which, with the exception of the tower, was rebuilt during the last century. The tower is probably of the eleventh or twelfth century. There are the remains of several Saxon arches in the interior, and the windows in the chancel contain some fine specimens of ancient stained glass. The living is a Rectory. Rev. Robert E. Landor, M.A., Rector; Mr. William Hancocks, Clerk. Service – 11 a.m. and 3 p.m.
The Parochial Schools are supported by the Misses Porter. Miss Hancocks, Mistress. Average number of scholars, 30.
Charities – There are eight Almshouses, endowed by the late Mr. Porter, for poor parishioners of Birlingham. There have been also several sums of money left for the benefit of the poor, which are distributed annually.
Landor Rev. Robert E., Rector, Rectory
Porter The Misses Phoebe and Ann, The Mansion
Risdon Mrs. E. H., Court House
Attwood Abel, shopkeeper
Attwood Esther, shopkeeper
Bradley John, carrier to Worcester
Brotheridge Mrs. S. E., Sub-Postmistress
Butt John, victualler and shopkeeper
Clements Mrs. Sarah, farmer
Dufty William, market gardener
Etheridge James, boot and shoe maker
Goodall James, butcher and farmer
Hancocks William, builder and Parish Clerk
Pitcher Thomas, farmer and gardener; and at Defford
Procter Richard, miller and corn merchant, Nafford Mills
Sherring James, bailiff to Mr. J. Woodward
Skinner William, farmer, Upper End
Smith Francis, beer retailer and market gardener
Smith William, tailor
Smithin Joseph, farmer
Summers Samuel, carpenter and hurdle maker
Turbeville Giles, tailor, Gravelly Hill
Woodward Josh., farmer; and at Badsey
Post Office – Mrs. S. E. Brotheridge, Sub-Postmistress. Arrival, 8 a.m.; despatch, 5 p.m.
Carrier – To Worcester, John Bradley, Sat., 6 a.m.
Source: Billings Directory of Worcestershire 1855