IS a large trading town, having a very considerable manufacture of stuffs and some cotton. It has three fairs in the year; one nine days after Whitsuntide; a second on the feast of Corpus Christi; and a third on St. Bartholemew’s day, for horned cattle, cheese, linen, and woollen cloth. It has a weekly market on Thursday. It contains 1180 houses, and 5749 inhabitants. Before the reformation, the manufactures of England were at a low ebb, and KIDDERMINSTER a very inconsiderable place, containing not above 300 inhabitants; in the fifth year of Queen Elizabeth’s reign it had somewhat increased, and the parish, exclusive of Mitton-chapel, contained 260 families. In the year 1773 it had 1700 looms, but in the year 1780 it had hardly 700.
It is an ancient borough, and formerly sent members to parliament. 23d Edward I, Walter Cardigan and Walter Lightfoot represented it: Luckily for the trade of the town, it has since that period had nothing to do with elections. The borough of KIDDERMINSTER contributes to the land-tax, at four shillings in the pound, 342l. 5s. 2d.; and to the poor near 1000l. a year.
Its distance from London is 123 miles, from Stourbridge 6 miles, from Bewdley 3 miles, and from Worcester 14 miles.
[From Perspective Views of the Market Towns within the County of Worcestershire, Drawn and Engraved by Thomas Sanders, Engraver and Drawing Master]