The Later Records Relating To North Westmorland Or the Barony of Appleby. Originally published by Titus Wilson and Son, Kendal, 1932.
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THE PARISH OF ST. MICHAEL, KIRKBY THORE.
Kirkby Thore seems to have been held from an early period, perhaps as far back as the reign of K. Stephen, by a family of its own name, the last of whom was John de Kirkby Thore living in the time of Henry VI. From the next reign to modern times the manor descended in a regular line of male succession from John Wharton to William Wharton of Gilling.
Temple Sowerby takes its name from having belonged to the Knights Templars who were suppressed by Pope Clement V in 1312. In 1323 it passed by Act of Parliament to the Hospitallers of St. John of Jerusalem, which body being dissolved 31 Henry VIII the manor came thereby into the hands of the king, who four years afterwards granted it, with an exemption of the mines of lead and coal, to Thomas Dalston in whose descendants it remained.
Milburn came into a family of the name of Lancaster in the latter end of the reign of Edward III and continued in the same until the reign of Henry VI when it passed to the Crackanthorpes, from them to the Sandfords and lastly by marriage into the family of Honywood. Some part of Milburn, however, comprising it is said the whole village of the Grange of Milburn, was granted in ancient times by Robert de Veteripont to the Abbey of Shap.
The Roman roads:—At Coupland Beck Bridge the modern turnpike to Appleby turns slightly southward away from the line of the Roman road which follows straight on through a footpath that enters a wide grassy lane, called High Street, thence forward passing just north of Appleby railway station to Kirkby Thore. Not so long ago the way was plain to see but now for some distance the railways cross and run along it. Beyond Kirkby Thore the turnpike nearly follows the Roman line as far as Temple Sowerby, then leaves it to turn northward in order to go round Whinfell and after crossing the Eden makes direct westward for Brougham. The Maiden Way branched off northward from Kirkby Thore, passing along the brow of the hill above Hale Grange, thence over Newbiggin Moor, crossing Milburn brook near the corn-mill to Lounthwaite Bridge where some operations at the farm disclosed part of the pavement.
Whelp Castle. Whelp father of Gamel is said to have built this castle from the ruins of the Roman fort here in the first half of the 12th century. Nicolson and Burn say that the square inclosure, called the High Burwens on rising ground at the bank of the Troutbeck seems to have been the area of it, containing eight score yards in diameter. See their History, vol. i, p. 379.
The origin of the church of Kirkby Thore is not known but it must be of great antiquity as we find that in 1179 Waldeve son of Gamel son of Whelp granted to the abbey of Holm Cultram certain lands "and all the land and marsh within the monk's dyke under Sperstanerig in Kirkby Thore except the land of the church and that of Robert de Broy which he gave the monks in exchange." About the year 1200 Adam son of Waldeve de Kyrkebythore confirmed the same. Again in 1194 an agreement was arrived at between the monks of Holm Cultram and the church of St. Michael of Kirkby Thore wherein the abbot and monks were to render the tenth sheaf to the church for all their lands in the parish. Bishop Irton in 1280 made complaint that owing to a Papal edict no service had been held here for eight years.
In the "Antique Taxatio Ecclesiastica" of Pope Nicholas IV, made in the year 1291, the rectory is rated at the high sum of £40 per annum, but in that made by the Bishop of Carlisle, 11 Edward 11, 1318, called the "Novo Taxatio" of Pope Clement v, it is rated as low as £5. For the reason of this great decline see page 22. The "Valor Ecclesiasticus" made by order of Parliament, 26 Henry VIII, 1535, gives the following:—
That the right of presentation to the church is in the Countess of Pembroke. That Mr. William Walker is incumbent there and hath for his maintenance the tithes of corn, hay, wool and lamb and all other small dues and tithes within the parish worth £100 and the glebe land belonging to the same which is worth £10 by the year. That there are within the said parish two parochial chapels the Cures whereof are supplied at the charges of the incumbent out of the profits above said, the one of them lying at Temple Sowerby northwest one mile distant from the said parish church the other at Milburn northwardly two miles distant from the parish church aforesaid.
ST. CUTHBERT, MILBURN.
Robert de Veteripont granted Milburn Grange to Shap Abbey for the purpose of establishing this chantry, the abbot and convent were to find a chaplain and pay him a salary of £4 a year out of the revenues of the Grange.
John son of Roger de Lancaster by his will, dated 13 January, 1353–4, desired that his body should be buried "in capella Sci Cuthberti de Milnebourne" and left a legacy to pay for a priest who should sing masses for his soul.
In the Valor Ecclesiasticus of 26 Henry VIII, 1535, William Sowerby is mentioned as being the incumbent and that the Chantry was worth £4 a year being the pension from the rector of Kirkby Thore. In 1625 it is described as a "Rectory" of the value of £9. 1s. 5½d.
Bishop Nicolson in his visitation of 19 August, 1703, records that the "church part is repaired by the hamlet who hire it out by the "Great." They have a couple of small pitiful bells both miserably cracked. Mr. Moore is the curate." The wall surrounding the churchyard is marked off in portions and certain inhabitants and property owners are responsible for the upkeep and repair of each his own portion, known as 'dowts,' 'dolts' or 'douts.'
ST. JAMES, TEMPLE SOWERBY.
In the Bishop's Register under date 1338 there is a confirmation of an old award made by Ralph de Irton, bishop of Carlisle 1280 to 1292, between the parishioners of K. Thore and the inhabitants of Temple Sowerby whereby the latter shall be free from contributing anything towards the repair of K. Thore church saving that if hereafter it shall be thought necessary to enlarge the nave of the church they shall then bear one-third of the expense.
In the Valor Ecclesiasticus of 26 Henry VIII, Thomas Ling is mentioned as being the incumbent and that the chapel is worth only 20s. being the annual pension from the rector of K. Thore and that the tenth part whereof is 2s.
Sarah Atkinson of Milburn, who died in 1790, left to the curate, chapel-wardens and overseers of the poor, £100, the interest to be by them applied to the education of poor children within the Chapelry, as far as it could go. The Schoolroom built upon the waste was kept in repair by the inhabitants.
The Knights of St. John held the manor until the dissolution of the monasteries when it was acquired by Thomas Dalston of Dalston. On an outside wall a stone is inscribed with the initials I.L.D. and the date 1656; John Dalston who was born in 1605 and died in 1692 married Lucie the daughter and heiress of Richard Fallowfield of Melkinthorpe. The Hall was remodelled by John Dalston in 1740. Sir William Dalston died in the middle of the 18th century when the estate descended through heiresses to John Boazman of Ayliffe.
Gilbert son of Adam de Kyrkebythore and Eva his wife quitclaimed to the abbot and monks of Holm Cultram all rights in a third part of the multure of the grange at Hale, and they swore upon the gospels that no claim should be made. He also bound himself by oath to warrant to Holm Abbey all the grants of his grandfather, Waldeve son of Gamel, at the grange of Hale in Kyrkebythore. These two charters date about 1242–3.
In the 35 Henry VIII Christopher Crackanthorpe purchased of the Crown the grange and tenement called Hale Grange with the appurtenances in Kirkby Thore, late belonging to the monastery of Holm Cultram. The Hale revenues were extended at £4. 3. 4. in the Valor Ecclesiasticus of 1535.
The chief messuage of the manor of Milburn. On 24 September, 1314, a pardon was issued to John son of Roger de Lancaster of Holegille for the death of John de Helton. The twin pele towers were erected about the year 1375 and about 1550 the second hall was built. Some hundred years later this hall was remodelled into living rooms, but there still remains the enormous northern wall through which runs a staircase three feet wide and roofed over by a series of stepped trefoil arches.
Kirkby Thore Hall.
On the rising ground to the west of this Hall, in the enclosure known as High Burwens, there stood Whelp castle. According to Machel it must have been very extensive and he states that it was out of the ruins of this ancient fabric that in the 15th century the present Hall was built. A younger branch of the Whartons of Wharton Hall resided here for thirteen generations.
Eden Bridge, at Temple Sowerby.
John de Morland, in his will dated 20 March, 1357–8, bequeathed 2s. to the bridge. Testa. Karl., 18. Thomas de Anandale, left by his will, dated 18 November, 1374, one mark (138. 4d.) each to eight bridges of which Temple Sowerby was one. Ibid., 107. Again Thomas de Sandford in his will dated 29 August, 1380, bequeathed 13s. 4d. to Temple Sowerby Bridge. Ibid., 143. In the will of Sir John Johnson, chaplain of Penrith, made on 11 December, 1484, there is an item of 40s. for this bridge "if his resources run to so much."
In 18 Elizabeth, 1575, John Wharton subscribed to the re-building of Temple Sowerby Bridge. The bridge appears upon the list of public bridges made on 28 April, 1679. On 1 April, 1706, it was presented as being in great decay and that the inhabitants of the East and West Wards ought to repair the same at their own costs. On 16 July following John Dalston reported to Quarter Sessions that he with John Hall of Temple Sowerby had viewed Eden Bridge and found it very ruinous and in decay both in the arches and battlements and that £150 will be but sufficient to make the said bridge in right order; it was therefore ordered by the Justices that the High Constables do give notice to all able and skilful masons that they take forthwith a view of the bridge and compute what their charge may amount to should they be asked to undertake to make the same a substantial bridge.
Then came its destruction when by a great flood it was washed away. On 28 January, 1748–9, it was ordered to be rebuilt at the expense of the county for £550. In taking up the frames from beneath the old piers, and digging deeper for a sure foundation the workmen found another frame of an earlier bridge underneath, both the frames being of good oak and not in the least decayed.
On 10 July, 1820, it was ordered that the High Constables of the East and West Wards do proceed forthwith to the repair and widening of Eden Bridge according to specification, and on 16 October the work was let to Robert Gowling for the sum of £580. Then came the great flood down the Eden on 2 February, 1822, when with so many other bridges Eden Bridge was broken down and mostly washed away. On 13 February an order was issued to the Bridge Masters of the East and West Wards that they advertise forthwith the rebuilding according to such plans and specifications as shall be produced. Also that the ford near the site of the late bridge be repaired and rendered passable for carriages of all descriptions as soon as practicable. On 2 March it was further ordered that a wooden bridge be built of such strength that droves of cattle, wagons and carriages of all description may safely pass over, the width to be 12 feet clear, and to be maintained till 1 December, when the new stone bridge will be ready, after which day the contractors shall be at liberty to take it down and convert the material to their own use. On 27 March it was ordered that the contract for rebuilding of the stone bridge be let to Mess. Laverick, Gowling and Company for the sum of £3495. 4. 0. On 23 April, 1823, the new bridge was opened to the public, when a bullock was roasted whole and eaten, with several barrels of beer to wash it down. It consists of four segmental arches.
Gullom Holme, over the Milburn Beck on the road between Milburn and Long Marton.
On 2 October 1699, the inhabitants of Milburn petitioned Quarter Sessions that there was formerly a bridge at Gullom Holme now in great decay and being very useful and advantageous for passengers, whereupon the Justices ordered that the inhabitants of the county of Westmorland should be assistant and contributary in the repair of the said bridge. On 23 April, 1781, there was a presentment that this bridge was a public bridge belonging to the county and that 300 feet at each end thereof should be repaired at the expense of the county.
K. Thore Bridge, over the Troutbeck on the road to Appleby.
John de Morland, rector of Long Marton, in his will dated 20 March, 1357–8, bequeathed 2s. to the bridge over the Troutbeck at K. Thore. On 18 July, 1649, at the Assize held at Appleby sixteen bridges were presented as in decay after the Civil War, this bridge being one of them, when it was ordered that 4s. in the pound be assessed and levied upon the whole County for the repair of the same. On 19 May, 1676, Quarter Sessions ordered that 12d. in the pound be forthwith levied for building a stone bridge at K. Thore. This bridge appears upon the list of public bridges made on 28 April, 1679. On 15 April, 1765, the High Constable of the East Ward was ordered to attend a meeting of the Trustees of the Turnpike Road from Brough to Eamont Bridge and ascertain their opinion as to rebuilding the bridge. On 7 October following it was decided to rebuild it making it 12 feet wide within the parapets. On 6 April, 1807, Matthew Atkinson, esquire, of Temple Sowerby, was asked to assist the High Constable in drawing up a plan and in making an estimate of the expense for repairing the structure. It was greatly damaged again during the great flood on 2 February, 1822. On 23 April, 1830, a presentment was made to the Court that the bridge was too narrow, ruinous and in decay, and on 20 October, 1837, it was ordered that a new bridge should be built in place of the ruinous one.
Lounthwaite Bridge, between Milburn and Kirkland.
Quarter Sessions ordered on 10 July, 1820, that Robert Gowling should be paid the sum of £13. 14. 3. being one half the expense of building an addition to Lounthwaite Bridge. It appears upon the list of public county bridges made in the year 1825.
Millrigg Bridge, between Temple Sowerby and Culgarth.
This bridge appears upon the list of public bridges made on 28 April, 1679. On 2 April, 1811, it was ordered to be rebuilt, and on 11 January, 1813, there was an order to pay £153. 16. 1. to Messrs. Gowling and further items of £15. 0. 8. being the share of the county for rebuilding.
Thomas Barnes M.D. of Carlisle has written such a clear account of this phenomenon that it is worthy of repetition here. He says:—"the air or wind from the east, ascends the gradual slope of the Pennine chain to the summit of Cross Fell, where it enters the helm or cap and is cooled to a less temperature; it then rushes forcibly down the abrupt declivity of the western side of the mountain into the valley beneath, in consequence of the valley being of a warmer temperature, and this constitutes the Helm-Wind. The sudden and violent rushing of the wind down the ravines occasions the loud noise that is heard. The current again is met at the foot of the mountains by a cooler wind, which causes the other to rebound; this is called the Helm-bar. The meeting of the opposing currents and the sudden condensation of air and moisture in the bar gives rise to its agitation. The bar is not the cause of the wind but the consequence of it. When there is a brake in the resistance of the bar, the wind rushes over the country. The places most subject to the Helm are Milburn, Kirkland, Ousby, Melmerby and Gamblesby. Sometimes the atmosphere may be so clear that not a cloud is to be seen, when suddenly a small cap or cloud is seen extending from south to north—the Helm is then said to be on—and in a few minutes the wind is blowing so furiously that it often throws down trees, overturns stacks and will even overturn a horse and cart."
Waldeve son of Gamel son of Welp quit-claimed to Holm Cultram about the year 1179 all rights in Sperstanerig, from the stone on the bank of the dyke above Trebrigge to the stone near the two thorns; across to the thorn at the upper head of the tarn up the sike to the greystone at the lower part of Ruccokes; across to the great wide greystone on Sperstanerig; across to the gill between Sperstanerig and Castellerig; up by that gill to the beck on the upper head of Sperstanerig; down that beck to the monk's dyke under Wartheberh, and thence down by the dyke to the stone above Trebrigge near the two thorns. At the same time Liulph son of Liulph de Kirkebythore granted 8½ acres in the tofts of K. Thore to Holm Cultram, i.e. in Witetoftes, in Bernestake and between Sandewath and Fullebrigge, as far as the main sike; and where there is no sike as far as the middle of the marsh; and as much of the moor as belongs to him between Fullebrigge and Aculfetofts. Also Laurence son of Robert the seneschal, de Newbiggin, granted to Holm Cultram his share of the marsh between the monks and him within the dyke made by the monks with his consent between Newbiggin and them. Reg. of Holm Cultram.
Adam son of Waldeve de Kirkebythore about the year 1200 granted to Holm Abbey 5 acres of arable land, i.e. two acres on the west of the howes between the king's highway and the road to Sowerby, one beneath the same howes, one beneath Wartheberh near the church land, and one acre on the cartroad from Bothelton (Bolton). At the same time Adam son of Liulph granted to Holm Abbey all the land which he had in the field called Morlandes in K. Thore towards Sowerby by these bounds:—As the king's highway from Carlisle comes from Soureby towards Appelby, as far as the outer land which Hugh the forester held in Kirkebythore towards Soureby, thence as the bounds between the monks and Hugh reach Westker.
Idonea de Leyburn, daughter of Sir Roger de Veteripont, widow, in 1294, quitclaimed to Holm Abbey her rights in the waste land of Kirkebythore between le Mors flat and le Maidengate (Maiden Way), from the end of that ploughed field called Little Castelrigge, up by the road called Maidengate towards the mountains to a certain sike on the moor, across on the north to le Staynraises, and so round Morflat to Haregile, and so up Little Castelrigge. Reg. of Holm Cultram.
John son of Roger de Lancaster of Howgill Castle made his will on Friday after the Feast of St. Hilary, January 13, 1353–4, in which he desires to be buried in the chapel of St. Cuthbert of Milburn. To which chapel he leaves a chasuble and twelve silver marks for a priest to pray for his soul for two years. Testa. Karl., p. 3.
William de Lancaster of Holgill gave to the king half a mark for licence to concord with William Gurwyll de Eryom and Alice his wife in a plea of covenant for a tenement in Kyrkethore and has the chirograph for peaceful admission before [judge] Roger de Fulthorp. De Banco Roll, 476, m. 147.
Robert de Grillyngton against John Tasker, John del Halle, John Dobson, Thomas Belle, John Webster, John Dikson, Thomas Shephird, William Apedale, John Nikson, Thomas Dandowe, John Rogerson, Thomas Copyne, John Eliotson and Robert Potter, in a plea wherefore with force and arms the corn and herbage belonging to the said Robert de Grillyngton at Kirkebythore and worth £10 with certain beasts was trodden down and consumed. De Banco Roll, 477, m. 465.
William de Corbrigg, parson of the church of Kirkebythore by Adam Crosseby his attorney, against John Sumpter and Adam Colson of Robardly in a plea that whereas it was ordained by the king that if any servant was retained in the service of anyone by agreement and withdrew without reasonable cause or licence he should be subject to imprisonment, the said John and Adam late servants of the said William and in his service at Kirkebythore withdrew from the said service without cause to the great damage of the said William. De Banco Rolls, 478, m. 249; 479, m. 378.
From the Registers of the Archdeaconry of Richmond, under date 28 August, 1430, we learn that Roger Crackanthorpe exchanged the living, he being presented to the church of Workington and Robert Steil to the church of K. Thore, by the royal presentation of the king temporarily.
Alexander Bates, curate of Milburne, accused Sir Richard Sandford to the Parliament of the Commonwealth, of having purchased twenty muskets and "that at the time the Parliamentary forces entered the county the castle of Howgill was garrisoned and not before, the said Sir Richard remaining within it all the while it was garrisoned, he maintaining the soldiers and when the Parliament soldiers came, went forth himself and commanded others to go to disarm the forces that came up towards the castle."
Whereas Mr. Lancelot Lowther late minister of Kirkby Thure being formerly sequestrated for delinquency hath intruded into the place without any authority and being summoned to appear this day to set forth his title thereto made default. It is therefore ordered that the said Mr. Lowther shall have a day prefixed to remove his family and goods out of that parish unless at the next meeting he can intitle himself to a lawful right to the place.
1669–1672 Hearth Tax Roll
The Rev. Thomas Machel, rector of Kirkby Thore for 22 years, died. From his close friendship with Sir Joseph Williamson, Secretary of State, he was enabled to gather together a mass of material from the State records in the Rolls Chapel and in the Tower, for the making of a county history; and by reason of his intimate association with Sir William Dugdale he was able to collect information concerning the people. At his death the whole collection was left to Bp. Nicolson for publication, who says that the loose papers were in great confusion, imperfect and indigested so that he could not think of completing the design. However, he gathered the fragments together, bound them in six folio volumes and lodged them in the Library of the Dean and Chapter at Carlisle. In 1777 the bishop's nephew, Joseph Nicolson and Dr. Burn made considerable use of this material when writing their History of Westmorland and Cumberland.
Presentment that John Reed of Knock, yeo., did on the 21st day of July with force and arms at Milburn make an assault upon Joseph Hodgson, beat, wounded and evilly treated him that his life was despaired of; therefore it is ordered that the said John be fined the sum of 6d. for his offence. Compare this with the next item:—
Elizabeth Jackson of Kirkby Thore being found guilty of stealing one shilling in money was ordered to remain in his majesty's gaol until Saturday next and then to be stripped naked from the waist upward and be publicly whipped during the time of market from the High Cross at Appleby back to the gaol and that from thenceforth she be discharged upon payment of fees. See page 68.
An Act for dividing and inclosing several tracts or parcels of common and waste ground called and known as Temple Sowerby Moor, the Down Moor, the Whinns and Parson's Close, in the parish of Kirkby Thore, came before Parliament this year. Whereas William Norton in right of Mary his wife, George Atkinson, John Salkeld, Ewan Emerson, John Atkinson and others are intitled to right of common, etc. May it please your majesty that Daniel Robinson of Dufton, Thomas Heelis of Appleby Castle, and Thomas James of Penrith be elected as commissioners for putting this Act in execution.
Indenture between Thomas Crosby of Kirkby Thore, yeo. of the one part; and William Atkinson late of Kaber but now of Kirkby Thore, yeo. and many others of the second part. Witnesses that in consideration of the sum of 5s. the said Thomas Crosby has sold to those of the second part all that newly erected Meeting House with the ground whereon it stands, 28 by 22 feet on the south of Kirkby Thore village, now in the possession of the said Crosby for the use of the Wesleyan Methodists, they to permit the yearly Conference to be held there as by deed enrolled by John Wesley in Chancery on the 28 February, 1784. Close Roll 9316, pt. 25. In 1827 more land was obtained and the Chapel was enlarged in 1828.
The Rev. Gilbert Elliot, vicar of K. Thore, on 1 May, 1841, took and subscribed the usual oaths on qualifying as a Justice of the Peace. On 5 January, 1846, the Rev. John Brown did the same on his institution to the Rectory and on 4 January, 1847, when qualifying as a Justice. On 27 October, 1849, the Rev. Charles Henry Barham, the Rector, when qualifying. On 19 November, 1859 the Rev. Edward Cookson, the Rector, likewise when qualifying as a Justice of the Peace.
An Indenture was made on 3 February 1849 between James Crosby of Kirkby Thore, eldest son and heir of John Crosby, decd. of the one part; and Samuel Crosby of Powis Howse in the parish of Long Marton, the Rev. Edwin Wright of Appleby, Methodist Minister, and others of the second part. Whereas John Crosby, decd. was seised of the land hereafter described and died in 1830 intestate and his son James became possessed thereof, and whereas those of the second part are possessed of money to purchase land for the use of the Wesleyan Methodist Association, now this Indenture witnesses that for 20s. the said James Crosby sells to them all that parcel of ground upon part whereof a Chapel has been erected in the village of Kirkby Thore, bounded on the west by the Town street, on the north and north-west by Richard Loadman's garden, on the south-east and south-west by John Robinson's garden, with all trees, paths, fences, passages, etc. for the use of the said Wesleyan Methodists. Close Roll 13822, pt. 51.