Townships
Little Crosby

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Victoria County History

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William Farrer & J. Brownbill (editors)

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1907

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85-91

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'Townships: Little Crosby', A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 3 (1907), pp. 85-91. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=41297 Date accessed: 30 September 2014.


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LITTLE CROSBY

Crosebi, Dom. Bk.; Little Crosseby, xiii and xiv cent.; Little Crosby, 1405.

This township lies to the north of Great Crosby, Thornback Pool being the boundary on that side. Extending along the coast, a wide belt of sand-hills, in which are rabbit warrens, forms an efficient protection to the low-lying land from the inroads of the sea. Some of the inhabitants are fishermen, who reap a harvest of shrimps, flukes, and cockles from the sea and broad firm sands.

Excepting those which cluster about Crosby Hall, there are but few trees or hedges, fields being principally divided by ditches. The alluvial soil produces good crops of potatoes and corn, whilst there are also meadows and pastures. The lower keuper sandstones, which here represent the geological formation, underlie the entire township, but, as elsewhere in the neighbourhood, are obscured by sand and deep boulder clay, and along the coast by blown sand which obscures the grey clays of the glacial drift series.

The acreage is 1,811. (fn. 1) The village, hall and park are at the southern end of the township; to the north are Moorhouse and Hightown, a modern hamlet; on the shore near the last-named is a lighthouse, built in 1839. The population in 1901 was 563. (fn. 2)

The Liverpool and Southport road passes diagonally through the township from south to north, roads to Thornton and Hightown branching off to the east and north-west. The Lancashire and Yorkshire Company's line from Liverpool to Southport also crosses it, with a station at Hightown.

The place was noted for the abundance of fine laurels. (fn. 3)

There are six crosses, one being in the village. (fn. 4) At Harkirk, now within the park, a number of Anglo-Saxon coins were found in 1611. (fn. 5)

The village well having become dry about thirty years ago has been closed up.

Narrs Croft and Wildings Croft occur among the field names in 1779.

A local board was formed in 1870; (fn. 6) this in 1894 became an urban district council of six members.

MANOR

LITTLE CROSBY was in 1066 part of the holding of Uctred, and rated as half a hide. (fn. 7) Afterwards it became part of the Widnes fee, and following the descent of that lordship passed eventually to the crown. (fn. 8) A subordinate manor was early created here, held in 1212 by Richard de Molyneux of Sefton; (fn. 9) and subsequently it was granted as a dependent manor to a junior branch of the family.

The first of this line was Roger de Molyneux, son of Adam and grandson of the above-named Richard. (fn. 10) About 1266 Robert Blundell demanded from this Roger an acquittance of the services which Alice de Lacy, lady of Halton, in right of her dower required from him, which Roger as mesne lord ought to perform. (fn. 11)

About 1287 Roger was succeeded by his son Richard, who held Little Crosby, Speke, and a moiety of Rainhill for nearly forty years. (fn. 12) He married Beatrice, apparently daughter and heir of Adam de Hindley, (fn. 13) and in 1312 was chosen a knight of the shire. (fn. 14) An elaborate settlement of the manor was made about the same time, (fn. 15) providing for its descent to Richard's son John and his heirs, with reversion to daughters Maud, Margaret, Agnes, Elizabeth, and Margery. (fn. 16)

In accordance with this settlement the son, Sir John Molyneux, about 1325 succeeded to Little Crosby. (fn. 17) A prominent man in the county in his time, (fn. 18) he was twice married and had several children, (fn. 19) who appear to have died before him; consequently on his death in or about 1362 (fn. 20) Little Crosby became the portion of his sister Agnes, who had married David Blundell of Great Crosby. The descendants of Agnes and David still possess the manor.

The origin of the Blundells' interest is unknown, but, as already shown, Robert Blundell was one of the free tenants in 1266. The earliest of the family to appear is Osbert de Ainsdale, living about 1160. (fn. 21) He had several sons, the eldest being Robert, who succeeded to Ainsdale, and had in 1190 a grant of Great Crosby from John, count of Mortain, confirmed when John became king; he is here described as John's forester. (fn. 22) He died in 1214, and was followed by his son Roger, (fn. 23) who within five years was in turn succeeded by a younger brother Adam, also known as 'de Ainsdale.' (fn. 24) This Adam occurs as witness to charters and in other ways down to about 1250. His wife was named Emma, (fn. 25) and their son Robert, afterwards a knight, and called 'de Crosby' as well as 'de Ainsdale,' adopted the surname Blundell, which has since been borne by his descendants. (fn. 26)

Robert had before 1249 married Maud, daughter of Agnes de Bolers of Walcot near Chirbury by her first husband, Peter de Montgomery, clerk; a series of lawsuits was necessary to recover the wife's Shropshire inheritance. (fn. 27) Robert is said to have accompanied Edward I on his expedition against the Welsh in 1277, (fn. 28) and to the following year belongs the latest document in which his name occurs—a grant of lands to his son Nicholas. (fn. 29)

This son succeeded him, and his name occurs down to 1319. (fn. 30) He was twice married. (fn. 31) His eldest son David, who married Agnes de Molyneux, having died before him, (fn. 32) the heir was his grandson Nicholas Blundell. (fn. 33) The latter had already been contracted in marriage with Aline, apparently the daughter of Richard de Holland, (fn. 34) and dying some time before 1351 (fn. 35) left a son and heir John, a minor, whose wardship and marriage fell to Sir John de Molyneux, in virtue of the Blundells' holding in Little Crosby. (fn. 36) John Blundell seems to have died about 1371, (fn. 37) without surviving issue, and Little Crosby descended to his brother Henry, whose tenure endured for some thirty-five years. (fn. 38)

His son, another Nicholas, succeeded. He was knight of the shire in 1413–14, and otherwise appears to have held an honourable position in the district. (fn. 39) He died about 1421, his heir being his eldest son Henry, who, by marriage with Joan, daughter and co-heir of Henry de Rixton, added a portion of Ditton and other lands to the family inheritance. (fn. 40) On his death, about 1456, he was succeeded by his son Nicholas, (fn. 41) and the latter in turn by his son, another Nicholas, about 1476.


Blundell of Little Crosby. Sable, ten billets, 4, 3, 2, and 1 argent.

The younger Nicholas, when quite a child, was married to Margery daughter of Henry Scarisbrick; (fn. 42) they lived happily together for sixty years and 'never noder cold find fote noder with oder,' but their latter years were greatly embittered by a long strife with the family of Molyneux of Sefton. (fn. 43) In some way Nicholas Blundell incurred the resentment of Dame Anne Molyneux, who, as guardian of her young sons, appears to have pushed to the uttermost the superior manorial rights of Sefton, and as a result in 1507–8 Nicholas Blundell granted to her and her son Edward for the grantor's life, the hall of Crosby, with the buildings, lands, windmill, and appurtenances, and the moiety of the rents in Crosby, at a rent of 20 marks. (fn. 44) In 1509 there was a settlement as to the homage required of him, (fn. 45) and in 1514 the manor was restored to him by Edward Molyneux. (fn. 46) The case had, of course, been taken into the courts, but Nicholas, who died about 1520, did not see the end of it, the final decree recognizing the rights of the Blundells being given in 1526. (fn. 47)

A more peaceful time followed. Nicholas's eldest son Henry having predeceased his father, (fn. 48) Nicholas was succeeded by his grandson James, who was of age in 1514, and died in May, 1527, (fn. 49) leaving as heir his son Henry, then only eleven years of age. Henry was succeeded by his son Richard, (fn. 50) in whose time the family troubles recommenced. Adhering unflinchingly to the ancient faith, he incurred the penalties imposed by the laws, and died in Lancaster Castle, 19 March, 1591–2, having been convicted of harbouring a seminary priest. (fn. 51) His son and heir William, who was sharing the same imprisonment, was afterwards released, only to be arrested again and imprisoned in London for two years. After his return to Crosby the hall was again searched, but he escaped by flight; his wife, however, was taken and imprisoned at Chester for some time. The old Lancaster indictment was revived, and husband and wife lived in hiding until the accession of James I, when a full pardon was obtained. (fn. 52) Afterwards he incurred a heavy fine on account of a rescue from the sheriff and the Harkirk burial ground. He died at Little Crosby, 2 July, 1638. (fn. 53)

His grandson William, son of Nicholas, succeeded. He attained his majority just about the outbreak of the Civil War. (fn. 54) Zealously espousing the king's side, he obtained a captain's commission in Sir Thomas Tyldesley's dragoons in December, 1642, and raised a troop of men; but being wounded at Lancaster in the following March and lamed for life, had to retire from active participation in hostilities. (fn. 55) He was four times imprisoned by the Parliamentarians, and his lands were sequestered for seven years, after which he was able to repurchase them through the intervention of Protestant friends. (fn. 56) After this he went abroad, ultimately returning to England in the same ship with Charles II. In the reign of James II he drew up a petition for compensation for various losses sustained by his loyalty and religion, but it was never presented; in it he described Little Crosby as a 'small lordship or manor, consisting of forty houses or thereabouts,' and for many years remarkable 'that it had not a beggar; that it had not an alehouse; that it had not a Protestant in it.' (fn. 57) The last statement seems justified by the recusant roll of 1641. (fn. 58) In 1689 he was imprisoned at Manchester for some weeks on the order of the lord-lieutenant, and was accused of complicity in the 'plot' of 1694. (fn. 59) He died 24 May, 1698, and was buried in the Blundell chapel in Sefton church. His son William, who in 1694 had been imprisoned and tried in his father's place, succeeded and lived for about eight years, (fn. 60) when he was followed by his son

Nicholas Blundell, the last of the male line. (fn. 61) He does not appear to have taken much interest in the politics of the time, but his house was searched in 1715, and he had to use the hiding place, 'a strait place for a fat man'; (fn. 62) and found it convenient to go abroad for a year or two. On his return he registered his estate as a 'Papist,' its annual value being £482 12s. 2½d. (fn. 63) He died 21 April, 1737, leaving two daughters, the younger of whom, Frances, eventually sole heiress, married Henry Peppard, a wealthy Liverpool merchant of Irish descent. (fn. 64) Their son Nicholas in 1772 took Blundell as his surname; (fn. 65) and was in turn followed by his son William, (fn. 66) his grandson Nicholas, (fn. 67) and his great-grandson William Joseph, the present lord of the manor.

An oxgang of land granted about 1270 by Sir Robert de Crosby to his sister Anabel and her husband Ralph de Greenhol (fn. 68) appears to have descended to the Anyon family, (fn. 69) and was eventually sold in 1501 to William Moore of Kirkdale, (fn. 70) with whose descendants it remained for over two hundred years, being described as the twenty-fourth part of the manor. (fn. 71) On the sale of the Moore estates it was purchased by the earl of Derby, (fn. 72) but has since been sold to the Blundells of Crosby.


Moore of Kirkdale. Argent, three greyhounds courant in pale sable, collared or.

Other families here were surnamed Moorhouses, (fn. 73) Lightfoot, (fn. 74) Langback, (fn. 75) and Liverpool. (fn. 76)

The hospital of St. John at Chester also had a small piece of land here. (fn. 77)

A number of 'Papists' registered estates in 1717. (fn. 78)

The lord of the manor and most of the people having adhered to the Roman Catholic faith, mass has probably been said here almost continuously in spite of the Elizabethan legislation. (fn. 79) But few notices of the priests who found a refuge here have been preserved (fn. 80) until the Jesuits were placed in charge of the mission about 1652, remaining there from that time until 1786. (fn. 81) The Benedictines succeeded them, and except for five years, continued until 1860. (fn. 82) Secular priests have since done service. In 1708 Fr. Aldred, then resident, left the hall to live in the village, an upper room in his cottage serving as a chapel; (fn. 83) in 1720 he removed to West Lane. (fn. 84) The present church of St. Mary, designed by A. W. Pugin, and built and endowed by William Blundell, grandfather of the present lord of the manor, was consecrated in 1847. There is a burial ground attached.

Footnotes

1 1,903, including five of inland water, according to the Census of 1901. In addition there are 11 acres of tidal water, and 1,322 of foreshore.
2 There were 20 officials and 114 boys in the truant school at Hightown, belonging to the Liverpool education authority.
3 Gregson, Fragments (ed. Harland), 224.
4 Lancs. and Ches. Antiq. Soc. xix, 180–3 and 178. Some of them are funeral crosses.
5 An impression of the plate showing these coins, engraved for Spelman's Life of Alfred, may be seen in Crosby Rec. (Chet. Soc. New Ser.), and Trans. Lancs. and Ches. Antiq. Soc. v, 219.
6 Lond. Gaz. 26 July, 1870.
7 V.C.H. Lancs. i, 283b. Kirkdale and Crosby together were one hide, of which Kirkdale was half.
8 Ibid. The three plough-lands, 'where ten plough-lands make a knight's fee,' were described as the quarter and twentieth of a fee.
9 Lancs. Inq. and Extents (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), 42. The relationship of Little Crosby to Sefton is usually stated in the feodaries, &c.; e.g. the Halton Feodary in Ormerod's Ches. (ed. Helsby), i, 709, states it to be held by Richard de Molyneux of Sefton for three plough-lands and a relief of £1 10s.; and at the De Lacy Inquest of 1311 (Chet. Soc.), p. 24, Richard de Molyneux of Crosby held it by knight's service and a payment of 2s. 8d. for sakefee and suit to the court at Widnes.
In addition to the mesne lordship the Molyneuxes of Sefton formerly held land in Little Crosby. Part had been acquired in various ways from William son of Adam de Crosby and Ellen, Adam's wife; Croxteth D. E. i, 1; ii, 4; and another part by Dame Anne Molyneux in 1489 from Gilbert Thomasson; ibid. E. i, 2.
10 Roger was brother of William son of Adam de Molyneux; Croxteth D. Genl. n. 2; Norris D. (B. M.) n. 480 *. He had half of Speke, and in 1256 in right of his wife Agnes half of Rainhill; see Final Conc. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 125. Additional particulars of his family may be seen in the accounts of these townships.
11 Cur. Reg. R. 180, m. 18.
12 Roger was living in 1287, when he granted land in Little Crosby to Richard, son of Thomas de Aykescho; Blundell of Crosby D. (Towneley MS. in possession of W. Farrer), K. 300. Richard Molyneux of Little Crosby was witness to a charter of 1294; ibid. K. 30. The seal to a grant by Richard, son of Roger de Molyneux, shows a lion rampant; Knowsley D. bdle. 1402, n. 1.
It may be added that there is a large collection of Little Crosby deeds in Kuerden's folio MS. in the Chetham Library.
13 See the accounts of Hindley and Culcheth. Beatrice afterwards married Robert de Bebington, and was living in 1349; De Banc. R. 273, m. 128; R. 286, m. 340; also R. 355, m. 109. The former actions arose out of a lease of the manor granted in 1326 by Beatrice to Stephen de Hamerton; Kuerden's fol. MS. n. 399.
14 Pink and Beavan, Parl. Rep. of Lancs. 15.
15 Richard de Molyneux, rector of Sefton, as feoffee, gave to Richard son of Roger de Molyneux and Beatrice his wife, all his manor of Little Crosby in its entirety, with remainders as stated; Blundell of Crosby D. K. 229. A copy of this charter seems to have been made for each of those in the remainder, two of the series being now at Little Crosby Hall.
The names of the homagers are thus given: Nicholas Blundell, William son of Adam, Richard son of Thomas, elsewhere surnamed 'de Aykescho,' Richard Bolymer, Randle Wolvesegh, and William Ballard.
Of these tenants William son of Adam was the most important after the Blundells; Adam being son of Gilbert of Little Crosby, originally one of the chief landholders in the township; see Assize R. 408, m. 4. Adam by his wife Ellen had a son William (occurring down to 1322), and a daughter Alice, who married Robert de Orrell, and then Patrick de Prescot. Her second husband seems to have endeavoured to secure his wife's estate for the Molyneuxes of Little Crosby, though by her former husband she had had a daughter and heir, Margery wife of Simon de Lydiate; Blundell of Crosby D. K. 122, K. 276, K. 304, K. 216, K. 184, K. 256. The Lydiates claimed the manor of Little Crosby in 1342; Kuerden's fol. MS. n. 495.
William son of Adam granted to Richard son of Roger de Molyneux all his lands, including half a plough-land in Little Crosby, with the homage of Nicholas Blundell, and 6d. rent from the Moorhouses, exception being made of an oxgang held by his sister Alice and Adam son of Thomas; another oxgang held by Richard de Walton by the service of ½d., and a third by Patrick de Prescot by a barbed arrow; Blundell of Crosby D. K. 251. He had several children—Richard (occurring down to 1345) who had a son William, whose wife was named Margery; Thomas, who had a son Adam; Robert; Sciletia; and Alice who married Hugh the Tunwright of Huyton, and had a son Robert; see Blundell of Crosby D. K. 255, K. 258; also Kuerden fol. MS, n. 393, 411, 492. By this last, dated 1382–3, Hugh son of William de Liverpool released to Henry, son of Nicholas Blundell, half the manor of Little Crosby and one oxgang, which Agnes widow of Richard son of William of Little Crosby formerly held.
William son of Adam of Little Crosby gave one oxgang—a twenty-fourth part of the vill—to his daughter Aline, who married John de Hindley; and another oxgang to his daughter Sibyl. Richard, son of William, unsuccessfully laid claim to this part of his father's estate in 1334; Coram Rege R. 297, m. 64. Ten years later, however, Richard recovered certain lands and pasture rights which he had temporarily lost through his father having given a moiety of his lands (for his life) to his two daughters, Sibyl wife of Alexander de Whalley, and Alice (as she is now called) wife of Roger son of Hugh of Great Crosby, who seem to be the Sciletia and Alice of the charters above quoted; Assize R. 1444, m. B.
16 The Molyneux settlement was in 1314 confirmed by a fine relating to a messuage, five oxgangs, &c. and the manor of Little Crosby, Richard and Beatrice being plaintiffs, and Roger, son of Robert de Molyneux of Rainhill, the deforciant. There is a variation in the statement of the remainders which afterwards led to lawsuits, the daughter Agnes being omitted altogether, and Margery, then wife of John de Lanc. following Maud in the third place; Final Conc. ii, 19.
The occasion of the settlement was probably the death of the eldest son Thomas without male issue, though by his wife Margery de Charnock he left a daughter Agnes, afterwards the wife of Henry de Atherton; see Final Conc. ii, 18; De Banc. R. 344, m. 442, and R. 347, m. 148d. Norris D. (B.M.) n. 944 is the marriage agreement, dated 1304, by which Thomas son and heir of Richard de Molyneux was to marry Margery daughter of Henry de Charnock, while the latter's son Adam was to marry Richard's daughter Joan.
Henry, son of Henry de Atherton of Hindley, and Agnes his wife, released in 1343 their right in the manors of Little Crosby and the Scholes in Eccleston to Beatrice, formerly wife of Richard de Molyneux of Crosby, and Sir John de Molyneux; Blundell of Crosby D. K. 212.
17 Richard de Molyneux held the manor in 1324; Dods. MSS. cxxxi, fol. 33b. Sir John de Molyneux in April, 1328, gave his mother Beatrice for her life all his right in the vill and manor of Little Crosby, excepting 5 marks of yearly rent which he had of her gift; Blundell of Crosby D. K. 195. The original is at Little Crosby.
In 1345 he granted Adam son of Thomas son of Wilcot half an oxgang in Little Crosby, with the meadow which Adam formerly held from Beatrice, the grantor's mother; ibid. K. 308. At the beginning of 1349 he enfeoffed Robert, son of William de Crosby, of his manors of Little Crosby, Speke, and Scholes, and all his lands in Rainhill and Appleton; ibid. K. 258 (original at Little Crosby). In December, 1350, he gave to William de Liverpool and Emma his wife the sixth part of the manor of Little Crosby, of which one oxgang was held for her life by Agnes, widow of Richard son of William of Little Crosby; ibid. K. 222 (original at Little Crosby).
18 Rot. Scot. (Rec. Com.), 307, 421, &c.
19 Sir John's first wife was named Agnes; Norris D. (B.M.), n. 494, dated 1314. His second wife was Clemency, daughter and co-heir of Roger de Cheadle, and widow of William de Baguley; Earwaker, East Ches. i, 170; Staff. Hist. Coll. (Salt Soc.), xvi, 5, 6, from a Chest. Plea Roll of 1336; Geneal. (New Ser.), xiii, 102; xii, 111, 112, where is an error in the descent.
Richard son of Sir John de Molyneux and Isabel his wife were defendants in a plea of 1342; Assize R. 1435, m. 47 d. He was witness to a charter in 1341, and in the following year had a grant of lands from Roger son of Adam son of William de Crosby, his father (Sir John) being a witness; Blundell of Crosby D. K. 127, 259. Five years later he was plaintiff in a case of trespass; De Banc. R. 352, m. 311 d.
20 Sir John de Molyneux was living in 1362; Norris D. (B.M.), n. 572.
21 Cockersand Chartul. (Chet. Soc.), ii, 568 to 595, and notes.
22 Kuerden MSS. v, fol. 124, nn. 172, 173. See also the account of Great Crosby.
In 1199 Robert de Ainsdale, son of Osbert, had a protection from King John; it was dated at Bourg-le-Roi in Maine; Rot. Cart. (Rec. Com.), 18.
23 Farrer, Lancs. Pipe R. 247.'
24 Cockersand Chartul. ii, 590, 591; Lancs. Inq. and Extents (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), 117.
25 Blundell of Crosby D. K. 203.
26 He is described as a knight in the deed last referred to. 'Robert de Crosby, son of Adam de Ainsdale,' confirmed his father's grants in Garston to the monks of Stanlaw; Whalley Coucher (Chet. Soc.), ii, 572.
As Robert de Crosby, knight, he gave to Ralph de Greenhol and Anabel his sister, Ralph's wife, an oxgang in Little Crosby which Robert son of Thomas de Ince formerly held, 'until the grantor or his heirs should enfeoff Ralph of an oxgang in Much Woolton,' then held by Robert the Heir; Blundell of Crosby D. K. 270, K. 161. The original is at Knowsley; bdle. 1402, n. 9.
27 Blundell of Crosby D. K. 165, K. 305; Eyton, Shrops. xi, 162, 163. Eyton does not seem to have known Agnes's family name, which is of interest as connecting her with the former lords of Montgomery; op. cit. 120. The charter K. 305 was executed in the castle of Montgomery, among the witnesses being Sir Adam de Montgomery, Baldwin and Stephen de Bolers.
28 T. E. Gibson, Cavalier's Note Book, 6.
29 Blundell of Crosby D. K. 164; the seal shows the lion rampant. The estate included all the land Sir Robert had in Ainsdale (wreck of the sea being reserved to him), in Bold, Woolton, Crooks and the Dale; and all his rents from Ravensmeols and Liverpool. Nicholas was to render for Ainsdale, &c., 6 marks, and for Little Crosby 2 marks. The penalty is noticeable: 'Should he fail in making these payments he shall give to the fabric of the King's new work at Royland [Rhuddlan] 5 marks for each term.' The witnesses indicate that it was executed in Shropshire; they include Masters Ralph de Freningham, Roger de Seyton, and Ralph de Hengham, justices; Sir Peter Corbet, Sir Ralph Corbet, and others. A similar grant, ibid. K. 203, has on the seal the billety coat now borne by the Blundells. Charles's Roll, edited by Sir George J. Armytage in 1869, gives as the arms of Robert Blundell (n. 331): Azure, ten billets or, four, three, two, and one; on a canton or a raven sable. In the same Roll (n. 466) Baldwin de Boulers (?) has: Sable, a bend between twelve billets argent.
30 He was a collector of various subsidies in 1295, 1301, and 1302; Parl. Writs; Lancs. Lay Subs. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 188, 236, 238.
Several of his grants are known. By one he gave an acre in Little Crosby 'in the Sand' to Nicholas son of Thomas de Aykescho; and to Adam son of the said Thomas he gave half an oxgang which he had bought from William son of Ralph de Greenhol; Blundell of Crosby D. K. 299, K. 254. From William son of Adam of Little Crosby he made purchases in the Branderth and elsewhere; ibid. K. 148, K. 307.
31 His first wife was named Eleanor; by her he had three sons—David, William, and Nicholas. Sir Robert, the father, gave to his son Nicholas and Eleanor his wife, on their marriage about 1270, all his right in Great and Little Crosby and Moorhouses; ibid. K. 174. William, one of the younger sons of this marriage, was contracted in 1298 to Joan daughter of Griffith de la Lee, probably a Shropshire man, and had all his grandmother's property in Walcot, Chirbury, Lydbury, Bishop's Castle, &c., settled upon him, so that it appears no more in the Little Crosby evidences; ibid. K. 154, K. 185, K. 187. The Blundens of Shropshire, who recorded a pedigree in 1623, claimed descent from the couple; Shrop. Visit. (Harl. Soc.), 48.
Nicholas son of Nicholas Blundell had in 1313–14 a grant of land in Wedholme from Alan le Norreys, at an annual rent of a grain of pepper. The grantor describes the younger Nicholas as his 'next of kin and heir,' but the relationship is otherwise unknown; Kuerden fol. MS. 73, n. 630.
The elder Nicholas married a Margery for his second wife; he had no issue by her; Duchy of Lanc. Assize R. 1, m. iiij d. ix. Dower was assigned to her in 1321–2; Blundell of Crosby D. K. 186. She afterwards married Thomas de Pentrith, surviving until about 1335; K. 240.
32 David died in or before 1311, in which year Richard de Molyneux, rector of Sefton, refeoffed Nicholas Blundell and Margery his wife of lands between Ribble and Mersey, including a windmill at Little Crosby; after the death of her husband Margery was to hold a moiety for her life, paying 6s. 8d. a year to Nicholas son of David Blundell, who was to have the other half; Blundell of Crosby D. K. 181, K. 273.
Agnes, David's widow, afterwards married Richard de Holland of Sutton, and was living, the second time a widow, in 1335; ibid. K. 176 and K. 208.
33 A grant of land in Little Crosby by Nicholas son of David Blundell to Adam son of his uncle Nicholas for a rent of 8d. is in the Blundell of Crosby D. K. 303. Abstracts of other grants by him are contained in the same volume, including the grant of a third of Little Crosby to his son Richard on his marriage with Emma in 1336; ibid. K. 240. The wife was a daughter of Thomas de Molyneux of Sefton, and lands in Great Crosby also were given; ibid. K. 121. There do not seem to have been any children by this marriage.
34 Ibid. K. 262; the original is at Little Crosby. Nicholas Blundell, senior, agreed to sustain Nicholas son of David in victuals, clothing, and all other necessaries, Richard de Holland doing the same for Aline, assisted by a contribution of 1 mark a year from Nicholas senior.
35 In 1328 he granted to Gilbert de Halsall the ancestral manor of Ainsdale; ibid. K. 183. He was witness to charters made in 1342; ibid. K. 32, K. 211.
36 Duchy of Lanc. Assize R. 1, m. jd. The plaintiff, Sir John, stated that though he had 'often offered to John son of Nicholas, whilst he was under age, suitable marriage, &c. the said John, rejecting that marriage, and without satisfying the said John de Molyneux respecting his marriage, intruded into his lands and tenements.' It thus appears that by July, 1351, John Blundell had attained his majority and taken possession of his father's lands. The result of the suit is not given. In 1358 Sir John de Molyneux, John son of Nicholas Blundell and Ellen his wife, John Anyon and Joan his wife, Margery widow of Nicholas Blundell, and Emma widow of Richard Blundell did not prosecute a claim they made against William Blundell of Ince; Assize R. 438, m. 18. In the following years also John Blundell appears as plaintiff; Duchy of Lanc. Assize R. 7, m. 2, 3, 4, 4d.; Assize R. 438, m. 7; R. 441, m. 1, 1d, 5d.
In one of the pleas against John de Liverpool is a pedigree of the Blundell family; it concerned an acre in Little Crosby which Sir Robert Blundell had given to Nicholas Blundell and Aline his wife and their heirs, and which therefore descended, through David their son, to Nicholas son of David and so to the claimant as son of Nicholas; Assize R. 7, m. 18.
In 1364 John Blundell was called upon to defend his title against John de Lancaster of Rainhill. The difference between the charter of Richard de Molyneux, rector of Sefton, and the later fine, in which the name of Agnes de Molyneux was omitted, has been pointed out. Under the fine John de Lancaster was heir, but John Blundell established the validity of the earlier charter by which he as son of Nicholas son of Agnes succeeded to Little Crosby on the death of Sir John de Molyneux without heirs; De Banc. R. 418, m. 345; R. 425, m. 314d. It appeared that John de Molyneux was under age when the charter was made.
37 William son of Adam de Liverpool in 1361 granted to John Blundell a messuage and land in Little Crosby; and three years later Richard son of Richard de Molyneux of Little Crosby granted him all the lands there he had received from Richard his father; Blundell of Crosby D. K. 266, K. 302. John was witness to grants made by and to Henry Blundell of Crosby in 1370 and 1371; ibid. K. 134, K. 158. Some misdeeds of John and his brother Henry, described in 1350 as 'common malefactors,' are given in Assize R. 452, m. 1.
38 In 1361 Henry attested the grant to John Blundell by William de Liverpool, cited in the last note. In a similar manner he occurs down to 1404; Blundell of Crosby D. K. 13. In 1377 a presentment was made against him for trespass of cattle and fishing in the Mersey; Liverpool Corp. D.
Although it would appear that Henry Blundell of Crosby was the Henry son of Nicholas Blundell of Crosby to whom a grant by a feoffee was made in 1381–2, a Henry son of John Blundell of Crosby attested a Walton deed in 1368; Croxteth D. Bb. iv, 26. 'Son' may be a slip for 'brother.'
In 1398, after the death of Richard de Molyneux of Sefton, it was found that Henry Blundell held land in Little Crosby of him by knight's service, paying a rent of 4d.; Lancs. Inq. p.m. (Chet. Soc.), i, 70. This rent continued to be paid down to 1798, when at the Sefton sale it was purchased for William Blundell, then lord of Little Crosby. Nicholas Blundell records that on 3 May, 1710, he paid 'two groats' to Lord Molyneux's bailiff for two years' customary rent; Diary, 85.
Licence for an oratory for two years at Little Crosby was granted him in Nov. 1387, by the bishop of Lichfield, and extended in May, 1389; Lich. Epis. Reg. vi, fol. 123b, 125b.
In 1381–2 Nicholas son of William de Liverpool released his right in certain lands which Henry Blundell had had from Hugh brother of Nicholas; Blundell of Crosby D. K. 14, K. 15.
The writ Diem clausit extr. was issued in 1406–7; Dep. Keeper's Rep. xxxiii, App. 7.
The seal of this Henry Blundell shows a cross moline pierced; no doubt adopted from Molyneux of Little Crosby; Croxteth D. Z. i, 18.
39 Pink and Beavan, Lancs. Parl. Representation, 49.
Beatrice daughter of Hugh de Stanulf and Agnes her sister, daughters and heirs of Joan, the daughter of William Blundell of Ince, in 1388–9 granted to Henry Blundell of Crosby and Nicholas his son, land on the Sand; Blundell of Crosby D. K. 152. See also ibid. K. 39 and K. 129.
In 1396 Richard son of Henry de Kighley acquired by fine the manor of Lightshaw from Nicholas, son of Henry Blundell of Crosby, and Ellen his wife; the last-named was daughter and heir of Nicholas de Tyldesley of Tyldesley; Pal. of Lanc. Feet of F. bdle. 3, m. 3; and Pal. of Lanc. Chanc. Misc. bdle. 1, file 9, n. 1.
The writ of Diem clausit extr. on his death was issued 12 March, 1422–3; Dep. Keeper's Rep. xxxii, App. 24.
40 See the account of Ditton. In 1422 Henry made several grants to John, son and heir of Thomas Renacres of Bickerstaffe; Kuerden, ii, fol. 69–70, 72. A Henry Blundell went to France in the king's retinue in May, 1415; Dep. Keeper's Rep. xliv, App. 564.
Henry had two brothers—John and Robert. For John his father purchased lands in Lydiate; he had a son Thomas, vicar of Brackley in Northamptonshire; Pal. of Lanc. Feet of F. bdle. 5, m. 15; Gibson, Lydiate Hall, 101. Robert was rector of Aldford in Cheshire from 1421 to 1461; he several times occurs in charters of Henry VI's reign; Ormerod, Ches. (ed. Helsby), ii, 759; Blundell of Crosby D. K. 15, K. 31, K. 36. For all three brothers, ibid. K, 47.
Henry Blundell was witness to charters as late as 1456; ibid. K. 58, K. 33.
41 Nicholas Blundell married Ellen daughter of John Page of Thornton; Blundell of Crosby D. K. 27.
42 Scarisbrick charters, n. 166 (in Trans. Hist. Soc. (New Ser.), xiii); P.R.O. Anct. D., A. 12603.
In 1479 as Nicholas, son and heir of Nicholas Blundell, he granted to Thomas Blundell, vicar of Brackley, Master Boniface Blundell, and others, his manor of Little Crosby.
43 Gibson, Cavalier's Note Book, 10. The petition from which this account of the family troubles is taken is printed more fully in Caröe and Gordon, Sefton, 73, from the original at Little Crosby. It appears to have been drawn up by George Blundell, a younger son of Nicholas, and complains that the Molyneuxes had taken away the Blundells' rights to waifs, strays, and wreck; also their sporting rights and rabbit warrens; their chapel on the north side of Sefton church; 20 marks rent; they had cast Nicholas and his son into prison at Lanc. for 14 weeks, denied George's right to the guardianship of his brother's heir; and finally 'daily lay in wait to kill and murder them.'
44 Kuerden fol. MS, 261, n. 490. Among the field names given are Oaklands, Brandearth, Corscroft, Hayrkirk, Bergh, Dobhey, Dalton, Ragh Winter Hey and Wodeam.
45 Liverpool Corp. D. An endorsement dated 1672 says, 'I think that the heirs of William Molyneux have nothing to do with Halton, and now I know no homage that is due unto them.'
46 Deed in Blundell evidences, 19 Aug. 1514.
47 Cavalier's Note Book, 10–11. There are numerous references to the matter in the Ducatus Lanc. (Rec. Com.). In 1517 Nicholas Blundell complained that whereas he had in 1512 let his manor of Crosby to George Blundell, Edward Molyneux, clerk, rector of Sefton, disregarding a decree made in the duchy of Lanc., had expelled George from the manor. Edward Molyneux replied that he and another recovered the manor against Nicholas to certain uses, and their tenant had been ejected by George; Duchy of Lanc. Depos. xi, B. 5, 5a, 6.
The dispute also came before the Star Chamber, which decreed that Edward Molyneux should pay the debts of Nicholas Blundell out of the profits of the manor of Little Crosby; the jointure of Agnes, widow of Henry Blundell, is mentioned; Star Chamb. Proc. Hen. VIII, v, 49–51; xxiv, 181; xxix, 86.
There is extant a grant by George Blundell to his brother Henry, son and heir-apparent of Nicholas Blundell, of all the manor of Little Crosby and all the messuages, &c., including courts-leet and liberties, which George had received from Nicholas; this is dated 1 June, 1513.
48 Duchy of Lanc. Inq. p. m. iv, n. 74. He died on Friday, 9 Sept. 1513, which supports the statement that he was killed at Flodden; James, his son and heir, was then twenty-two years of age. The inquisition recites the provision made in 1502 and 1503 for his second wife Agnes, daughter of Sir Henry, and sister of Richard Bold, including Ditton, Great Crosby and other lands. His first wife, espoused in 1488–9, was Katherine, daughter of William Heaton, of Heaton under Horwich; Kuerden, fol. MS. 248. n. 580; and iii, C. 34.
49 Duchy of Lanc. Inq. p. m. vi, n. 16, 68. He had held the manor of Little Crosby of William Molyneux by knight's service and a rent of 4d., and lands in Great Crosby (by a rent of 10s.), Ditton, Ince Blundell, Bold, Hindley, Liverpool, Orrell, and Warrington.
50 Little seems to be known of Henry Blundell; he was living in 1545; Ducatus Lanc. (Rec. Com.), i, 181. Three years later he sold a house to Richard Molyneux; Croxteth D. E. i, 3: and made a settlement of his manors and lands in August the same year, the remainder being to his son Richard; Pal. of Lanc. Feet of F. bdle. 13, m. 56.
In 1562, the will of Thomas Leyland of Morleys mentions 'Anne Blundell, my sister, widow,' so that Henry Blundell had died before this; Piccope, Wills (Chet. Soc.), i, 162; Richard Blundell was in possession early in 1561; Pal. of Lanc. Feet of F. bdle. 23, m. 94.
From this time the pedigrees recorded at the Visits, of 1567 and 1664, printed by the Chet. Soc., can be used.
51 Duchy of Lanc. Inq. p.m. xv, n. 10. His son and heir was then twenty-four years of age. The father 'was in gaol for recepting of a seminary' in 1590; Lydiate Hall, 245 (quoting S. P. Dom. Eliz. ccxxxv, n. 4). As early as 1568 he had solemnly sworn to 'take the Pope to be the supreme head of the Church'; ibid. 211. See Crosby Rec. (Chet. Soc. New Ser.), 21–2; also Stanley P. (Chet. Soc.), ii, 81, 89, 213; Gillow, Bibl. Dict. of Engl. Cath. i, 247.
52 See Gillow, op. cit. i, 248. Crosby Rec. 21–40, contains an account of his sufferings during the persecution, compiled by William Blundell himself, covering the period 1590 to 1630. He consoled himself by writing 'ballads,' which he set to music; three of them are given, 24–30. Two-thirds of his father's lands, sequestered for recusancy, had been granted to 'one Lever'; in 1594, when he was in prison in London, John Gille obtained a grant of the two-thirds; afterwards a division was made, and a lease granted to William Norris, whose sister married William Blundell; then Charles Grimston obtained a new grant; Thomas Heaton and Gervase Travis followed, and then two of Queen Elizabeth's cooks— 'two of the black guard'—begged all his lands as a fugitive, for at this time proclamation had been made in Liverpool market according to the statute of fugitives, it being supposed that he had left the country. By the pardon from James I he recovered his lands, John Gille having been the only one of the grantees who had secured any profit by the sequestrations. Further grants of the sequestered two-thirds were made by James I between 1607 and 1610, but nothing seems to have come of them; for instance, in 1610 Ambrose Astell, pretending a grant from Bowes and Beeston, seized some of William Blundell's cattle, but they were rescued; 'whereupon he caused a privy sessions and indicted a great many—to the number of seventy persons—intending to make a Star Chamber matter of it—but in the meantime he was proved to exceed his commission and take bribes, and thereby was driven the country'; ibid. 31–3. Little Crosby Hall 'was once for fourteen days together [beset by pursuivants] upon the report of a wicked priest that fell and became a minister, discovering what he knew of Catholics'; Chron. of St. Monica's, Louvain (ed. Hamilton); i, 153.
The grant of John Gille was dated 2 March, 1593–4; that to Arthur Gibson and Edward Thurleston, 27 July, 1607; ibid. 90, 91. A special commission was issued touching his lands in 1601 (n. 1220); Lancs. and Ches. Rec. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), ii, 344.
53 Crosby Rec. 35–45. The immediate occasion of the Star Chamb. proceedings was the rescue in 1624 described above in the introduction; the Harkirk burial ground then came under notice. This ground had been in use since 1611, when, 'having heard that Catholic recusants were prohibited to be buried at their parish church,' William Blundell 'caused a little piece of ground to be enclosed within his own demesne land in a place called of old time, as it is now also, the Harkirk.' Harkirk was used occasionally for burial down to 1753; ibid. 69–85. The Star Chamb. imposed a fine of £2,000, afterwards reduced to £500; Cavalier's Note Book, p. 18 (quoting Rushworth, Hist. Coll. ii, 21).
As a convicted recusant he paid double to the subsidy in 1628; Norris D. (B.M.).
Two of the court rolls of Little Crosby of 1628 and 1634, with lists of the freeholders, are printed in Trans. Hist. Soc. (New Ser.), vii-viii, 113–22. Officers peculiar to the manors on the coast were the 'surveyors of the sandy copps.'
The inquisition taken after William Blundell's death—Duchy of Lanc. Inq. p. m. xxviii, n. 54—shows little change in the lands held by him; it recites the provision made by him in 1631 for the younger children of his son Nicholas Blundell, deceased—Richard, Emily, Margaret, Anne, Winifred, and Frances. Jane the widow of Nicholas was still living in 1638. Nicholas Blundell seems to have lixed at Ditton, paying double to the subsidy of 1628 as a convicted recusant; Norris D. (B. M.).
Richard Blundell, after studying at St. Omer's, went to the English College, Rome, where he died 22 July, 1649, having previously been received into the Society of Jesus; Foley, Rec. S. J. i, 233–46; vii, 67.
54 According to the inquisition last quoted he was born on or about 18 July, 1620.
55 A full account of his life will be found in T. E. Gibson's Cavalier's Note Book, 19–80; a fac-simile of the commission signed by Tho. Tyldesley forms the frontispiece. See also Gillow, op. cit. i, 249. His history of the Isle of Man has been printed by the Manx Soc.
56 Royalist Comp. P. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 203–7, contains the petition by Anne Blundell, his wife, and their children; and the contract for sale to Gilbert Crouch in 1653. In the Cal. of Committee for Comp. iv, 2692, are some further particulars. William Blundell was obliged to pay not only for his estates, but also the sums unpaid since 1596 by John Gille and other grantees of the sequestered two-thirds; details are given in Crosby Rec. 89–104, the final settlement being made in 1658. The estate had been sold under the third Act of 1652; Index of Royalists (Index Soc.), 42. The payment for the estate, in which he had only a life interest, was £1,340, and for the arrears £1,167; Cavalier's Note Book, 29. A settlement of his manors, &c., was made by William Blundell early in 1662; Pal. of Lanc. Feet of F. bdle 168, m. 11. In 1666 the hall at Crosby had fifteen hearths liable to the tax; Lay Subs. 250–9.
57 Cavalier's Note Book, 52–54. He and his son William had been marked out for banishment in 1680; ibid. 166–7.
58 Trans. Hist. Soc. (New Ser.), xiv, 236.
59 For the charge and arrest see Kenyon MSS. (Hist. MSS. Com.), 307, 319, 362. His defence in 1694 may be read in Jacobite Trials (Chet. Soc.), 100.
60 He died 2 August, 1702; N. Blundell, Diary, 2. The son records: 'As his life was virtuous and edifying so was his death.'
His eldest brother Nicholas renounced the inheritance on entering the Society of Jesus in 1663; he was charged by Titus Oates with an intention to burn the city of London, but was released after a brief imprisonment; Gillow, op. cit. i, 245; Foley, Rec. S. J. v, 44, &c.; vii, 66. Thomas Blundell, a younger brother, was also a Jesuit; Gillow, i, 247; Foley, vii, 67.
61 See Gillow, op. cit. i, 246. One brother, Joseph, was a Jesuit; Foley, op. cit. v, 342; vii, 66; his will is at Stonyhurst; Hist. MSS. Com. Rep. x, App. iv, 183–4. The other, Richard, died in Maryland in 1704; Diary, 32.
Extracts from Nicholas's Diary were published at Liverpool in 1895, giving a multitude of interesting details as to persons and customs. The following topographical notes may be given as specimens: 'Mr. Richard Molyneux of the Grange and I set a merestone to be the boundary between his coney warren and mine; it was set about halfway between a great sandhill and Blanchard's lane end, upon a hill called Tenpenny hill, and lineable with the two merestones at each end of Blanchard's lane' (p. 5); 'The jury met in the Town-field about setting out some other ways; we discoursed about the Doostone that's set in Richard Harrison's butt' (p. 54); 'I removed the great stone as has time out of mind stood near the Lower Bark gate and fixed it at the turning of the causey in the west lane' (p. 163). The frontispiece is a view of Crosby Hall in 1735.
62 Diary, 138.
63 Ibid. 145; Eng. Cath. Nonjurors, 150.
64 He is first mentioned in the Diary on 17 Oct. 1720 (p. 170); Foley, Rec. S. J. v, 365, where the name is given as Pippard. He is said to have been a grandson of Thomas Peppard, alderman and merchant of Drogheda, who represented the town in the Irish Parliament from 1634 till his death in 1640; Names of Members (Blue Bk. 1878), ii, 614. A Colonel Peppard commanded Walsh's regiment in the Irish Brigade in 1736; Foley, op. cit. v, 399. Henry Pippard and Frances his wife made a settlement of the manor in 1735; Pal. of Lanc. Feet of F. bdle. 313, m. 12.
The later stages of the Blundell pedigree have been taken from Gregson, Fragments, 223; Burke, Commoners, ii, 529, and Landed Gentry.
65 Cal. Home Office Papers, 1770–2, p. 634.
66 He purchased the manor of Great Crosby in 1798.
67 A biography with portrait appeared in the Liverpool Cath. Ann. 1895.
68 This charter has been recited in a previous note. Ralph had a son William, whose widow was named Margaret; they appear to have sold half the oxgang to Nicholas Blundell; Blundell of Crosby D. K. 283, K. 238. It was afterwards given to Adam, son of Thomas de Aykesco; ibid. K. 254.
69 The descent is by inference merely. John Anyon and Joan his wife and John their son in 1367 received from John Blundell a lease of land. It appears that Joan inherited from her mother Aline a rent of 13s. 4d. from an oxgang in Little Crosby, mentioned in exchanges between Joan and Henry Blundell in 1385 and 1386. Richard Anyon had a grant of land in the Sand, which seems to have been a hamlet, in 1405. The deeds are at Knowsley, bdle. 1402, n. 15–20, 24.
70 Thomas Anyon of Brackley was the vendor; ibid. n. 25–26. The price was 40 marks. About a century later there was an arbitration as to the common between William Moore and William Blundell; ibid. n. 29.
71 It so appears in the Moore inquisitions; e.g. Lancs. Inq. p.m. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 14.
72 The Knowsley deeds referred to are described as 'relating to former possessions of the earl of Derby.'
The Moores had other lands in the Moorhouses, Little Crosby, and Ince Blundell, purchased in 1472 by Roger Mercer of Walton from Thomas Linacre, to whom they had descended from Thomas Wilson his grandfather; Moore D. n. 749 to 751.
73 Settlements of his estate at the Sand, &c., made between 1361 and 1388 by William, son of William Dyken of the Moorhouses, show that he had a son John, and daughters, Margaret, Ellen, and Clemency; his wife's name was Quenilda; Knowsley D. bdle. 1402, n. 14, 21–22.
There are many deeds relating to the family or families thus named in the Blundell of Crosby D.
74 In 1332 Henry the Shepherd (Bercator) of the Moorhouses gave to Adam Lightfoot, in free marriage with his daughter Ellen, lands which he had procured from Nicholas, son of David Blundell, in the Moorlands; Blundell of Crosby D. K. 285. Ten years later Roger son of Adam of Little Crosby granted land to the same Adam Lightfoot; ibid. K. 288.
75 Nicholas Blundell in 1333 granted to William son of Robert Langback common of pasture for all animals in Little Crosby; ibid. K. 130. William's sons Richard, John, and Thomas, in 1356 regranted to their father the lands they had received from him; ibid. K. 132. A grant to the son Thomas, made in 1355, is at Knowsley; bdle. 1402, n. 13.
76 The Liverpool family several times appear in the Blundell D. as feoffees or owners of land. At Knowsley is a grant, dated 1349, from Richard son of William son of Ralph de Liverpool to John Dicconson of Liverpool, son of Maud del Meles, concerning lands in Little Crosby which descended to Richard after the death of his brother Master Robert de Liverpool, as contained in the charter of Nicholas son of David Blundell made to Master Robert; Roger de la Moore of Liverpool and Adam son of Richard de Liverpool were among the witnesses; bdle. 1402, n. 11.
77 Richard son of Hugh the Little resigned to Adam son of Robert de Ainsdale his right in an acre in Little Crosby held of the house of St. John of Chester; Blundell of Crosby D. K. 306. A certain Roger in 1316–17 gave to William son of William de Formby land held from the same hospital; ibid. K. 133. Six years later William son of Bimme of the Moorhouses granted to Robert his son and heir an acre in Little Crosby, to be held of the chief lord of the fee, 2d. a year being payable to the hospital; Kuerden, ii, fol. 254, n. 200. This land Robert in 1342 gave to Richard son of John de Langback; Blundell of Crosby D. K. 140.
78 Margaret Sheppard, Thomas Marrow, Margery Blundell, Richard Ainsworth, William Weedow, John Blundell, William Grey, Thomas Blanchard, Edward Howard, Walter Thelwall, John Tickle, Thomas Mather, William Harrison, Bryan Lea, Thomas Farrer, Richard Jackson, William Wignall (also at Scarisbrick), James Dary, John Molyneux, and William Marrow; Engl. Cath. Non-jurors, 147–8, 154–5.
79 'To the Blundells of Crosby the Catholics of the south-west of Lancs. were long indebted; for their domestic chapel and the priest who served it were at frequent intervals their only religious help in penal times'; Jos. Gillow in Trans. Hist. Soc. (New Ser.), xiii, 163–4.
80 In 1568 there were 'two priests at the hall of Crosby,' who said mass commonly; Gibson, Lydiate Hall, 211 (quoting S. P. Dom. Eliz. xlviii, n. 34). Christopher Small, sometime fellow of Exeter Coll. Oxf. found a refuge here for several years; see the account of Lydiate. In 1586 the curate of Sefton reported that James Darwen, a seminary priest, was received by Richard Blundell of Crosby; Lydiate Hall, 240 (from Harl. MS. 360, fol. 7b). It was for harbouring one Woodruff, a seminary priest, that Richard was imprisoned in 1590; Crosby Rec. 21. James Forde, another seminarist, was there in 1592; Gillow, loc. cit.
81 Foley, Rec. S. J. v, 340–5.
82 Gillow, loc. cit., where a list will be found.
83 N. Blundell, Diary, 63. There is a view of it opposite p. 72.
84 Ibid. 163. There are numerous allusions to the 'chapel' and services in the volume just quoted. On 1 July, 1721, Bishop Witham confirmed 284 persons; p. 178.