Well, well, well! Merlich, Jacob & Mary



Most of us Lichfeldians know about St Chad’s well. However, I have come across a few other wells in Lichfield which seem to have disappeared.

Merliches Well – According to the William Salt Archaeological Society’s ‘Collection for a History of Staffordshire’, Merliches Well was on Merliches Lane, a short lane at right angles to Pipe Lane. Pipe Lane was the old name for Abnalls Lane and was on the east side of Beacon Street, or Bacone Street as it was known then.

From A Short Account of the Ancient and Modern State of the City and Close of Lichfield, ‘on the North Side of Shaw Lane leading to Merliche’s or Maudlin’s Well was a large house called Whitehall, and on the south side the Archdeacon of Chester had a house’. ( I think the Archdeacons house was on the corner of Beacon St and Shaw Lane).

John Jackson’s History of the City and Cathedral of Lichfield says that tradition suggests that Maudlins Well was so called due to a drunkard tumbling in one evening after one too many. However Jackson believes that the name instead referes to Magdalen.

Jacob’s Well – near Friar’s Alley, a few yards from the brook near this place was a spring formerly in repute for curing weak eyes and sores.

Marywell – In Breadmarket St, was a house called Priest’s Hall (now St Mary’s Chambers) and near here was a well called Marywell. According to the County History, St. Mary’s Well, in Breadmarket Street opposite the west end of St. Mary’s church, existed in the late Middle Ages

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