Harlow in 1837
Harlow is in the half hundred of Harlow, just beside the road by Newmarket to Norwich, rather more than 23 miles from town. The village is about a mile from the river Stort. It was formerly the seat of a large woollen manufacture and of a considerable trade. The church is in a central situation, and is of tolerable size : it was originally in the form of a cross, with a central tower rising from the intersection of the transepts : this church was much injured by fire in 1711, and upon its restoration a cupola was substituted for the tower : the church is adorned with much painted glass. There is a place of worship for Baptists, several almshouses, and a charity school.
At Harlow Bury, a mile north of the village, is a large ancient chapel, used as a barn or farm-office. It has a fine semicircular-headed door, the shafts of which have small capitals like those of the Galilee at Durham. There are some small windows with round heads and others with pointed heads.
The parish of Harlow contains 4,490 acres, and had in 1831 a population of 2,101, above half agricultural. There are three considerable fairs in the year for horses and cattle ; the second, held on Harlowbush Common, two or three miles south of the village, is the most frequented ; horses for all purposes, black cattle and other live stock, and wool, are brought for sale, and the fair attracts a concourse of people for fifteen or twenty miles round, and even from the metropolis. The living is a vicarage, of the yearly value of £383, with a glebe-house, in the archdeaconry of London.
A large sum of money (£8,000), bequeathed by Mr. George Fawbert, has been vested in trustees for the establishment of a day school and library at Harlow, and for apprenticing or otherwise advancing in the world those educated at the school.