NEXT to Paul's Cray, northward, lies Foot's
Cray, which takes its name from the owner of it in
the time of the Saxons, one Godwin Fot, (Fot in the
Saxon tongue signifying the same as Foot in English),
and from the river Cray which runs through this parish. It is also frequently written Votes-Cray, and
Foets Cray, in old deeds and writings.
The high road which leads through the centre of
this county from New Cross to Wrotham, and thence
to Maidstone, Cocks-heath, and the Weald of Kent,
passes through this parish. Near the east end of which
a small street of houses built on each side of the above
road forms the village of Foot's Cray, at the east end
of which the river Cray, crossing that road, and having
turned a mill, directs its course towards North Cray.
Foot's Cray park almost adjoins the village, on the
north side of it, near which the church stands. Hence
the ground rises westward towards Sidcup, at about
half a mile distance from whence, towards the western
bounds of this parish, it is very dreary and unpleasant,
and much covered with coppice wood, and the soil is
very poor, being much of it either a gravel or cold
unfertile clay. It contains about sevend hundred and
fifty acres of land.
At the time of the taking of Domesday, in the reign
of the Conqueror, this place was part of the possessions
of Odo, the great bishop of Baieux, and earl of Kent,
the king's half brother; accordingly it is entered in
that survey under the general title of the bishop's lands:
The same William (Fitzoger) holds of the bishop
(of Baieux) Crai. It was taxed at half a suling. The
arable land is. . . . . In demesne there is 1 carucate,
and 8 villeins, with 1 carucate and an half, and 4 cottagers, and 1 mill of 10 shillings. There is 1 servant,
and wood for the pannage of 6 hogs. In the time of
king Edward the Confessor it was worth 4 pounds, and
afterwards 3 pounds, now 4 pounds. Goduin held it of
On the bishop of Baieux's disgrace in 1084, his
estates were all confifcated to the crown.
In the reign of king John Robert de Crevequer held
one knights fee in Foot's Cray, and William de Eynesford held it again of him. After which this place was
held by the family of Rokesle. Gregory de Rokesle
died possessed of it in the reign of king Edward I.
His son Roger de Rokesle seems to have possessed only
a moiety of this estate, the other being possessed by
Thomas de Warderoba. Roger de Rokesle passed
away his interest in it in the 33d year of that reign, to
John Abel, who died possessed of it in the 16th year of
king Edward II. (fn. 1) his son Walter Abel conveyed it to
Sir Simon de Vaughan, (fn. 2) who paid aid for it in the 20th
year of king Edward III. In the book of which it is
"Of Sir Simon Vagen, and the prior of St. Mary,
of Southwarke, for one fee in Fotiscrey, which the
heirs of Thomas de Wardroba, and the tenants of
Robert Crevequer, held of Hamon Crevequer; of
which Simon holds one moiety, viz. that part which
was Robert Crevequer's; and the prior holds the
other moiety, which was the aforesaid Thomas's, in
the fields called Le Hoke and Craywode, in this
Sir Simon Vaughan died possessed of the manor of
Fotis Crey, who lies buried with his wife under an altar
tomb in this church, with their figures at length on it.
His descendant, Hamo Vaughan, died owner of it in
the 18th year of king Richard II. and left an only
daughter and heir, Alianore, who carried it in marriage
to Warner, from whom it descended to John
Warner, esq. of Foot's Cray, who was sheriff of this
county in the 20th year of king Henry VI. But this
family at length ended in two daughters, and coheirs,
one of whom married John Heron, and the other Denham; and on the division of their inheritance, this
manor was allotted to the former. His descendant,
Christopher Heron, esq. in the 21st year of king Henry
VIII. passed it away by sale to Sir Edmund Walsingham, whose descendant, Sir Francis Walsingham, principal secretary of state to queen Elizabeth, about the
middle of that reign, alienated some part of the lands
by fine in the 7th and 8th of that reign to John Ellis,
and the manor itself, with the remainder of the demesne lands some years afterwards to Mr. John Gellibrand, of London; (fn. 3) whose descendant, Mr. Samuel
Gellibrand passed it away by sale in 1694 to Mr. George
Perkins, gent. of Lambeth, on whose death it descended
to his son, John Perkins; who, dying without issue
male, Mary, his only daughter and heir, carried it in
marriage to Mr. Edward Townsend, of Brockley, in
Deptford, who joined with his wife in the sale of part
of the demesne lands to Bourchier Cleve, esq. to enlarge his possessions about Foot's Cray Place, and they
are now in the possession of Benjamin Harenc, esq.
But the manor of Foot's, alias Votes Cray, with the
residue of the demesne lands, descended to their three
sons and coheirs; who, in 1764, alienated it to John
Calcraft, esq. of Ingries, who died possessed of it in
1772, and his eldest son, by his will, became intitled to
it, by whose trustees it was afterwards sold to Charles
Stewart Minshaw, esq. the present owner of it.
A court-baron is held for this manor, which extends
over part only of this parish. The tenants are all
freeholders, and it appears by the court rolls, that some
of the lands within it are held by heriot service.
FOOT's CRAY-PLACE is a seat in this parish, which
was built on that part of the demesnes of the manor of
Foot's Cray, which was sold by Sir Francis Walsingham
by fine, anno 7 and 8 queen Elizabeth, to John Ellis;
from which name this estate passed to Limen, and from
thence to Smith, in which it remained till the heirs of
Mr. George Smith alienated it to Bourchier Cleve, of
London, pewterer, who pulled down the old seat, and
erected, at some distance northward from it, an elegant
mansion of free-stone, built after the model, though
with some few alterations, of the late earl of Westmoreland's seat at Mereworth, who designed it after
one of Andrea Palladio, built for a Vincentine gentleman on the bank of the river Bacchiglione, near the
city of Venice. At the same time he inclosed a park
round it, which he embellished with plantations of trees,
and an artificial canal, which flows the whole length of
the park, at about a quarter of a mile's distance from
the house, seeming from thence a natural stream, though
it is but an artificial cut from the river Cray, which
runs just by.
He died possessed of it in 1760, leaving by Elizabeth
his wife, an only daughter and heir, Elizabeth, who, in
1765, carried this seat, with other possessions, in marriage to Sir George Yonge, bart. The ancestor of
whose family was Walter Yonge, esq. who is mentioned
in the visitation of Devonshire, taken in 1620, to be a
younger son of the Yonges of Berkshire, and to have
settled in Devonshire in the reign of king Henry VII.
Sir John Yonge, on the restoration of king Charles
II. was advanced to the dignity of a baronet, Sept. 26,
13 king Charles II. from whom descended the present
baronet. They bear for their arms, Ermine on a bend,
between two cotizes sable, three griffins heads or. They
in 1772 joined in the sale of Foot's Cray-place, with
the rest of their estate in this parish, to Benjamin Harenc, of London, esq. sheriff of this county in 1777,
who now resides here.
Sir Thomas Pulloccil, or Pullyson Draper, who was
lord mayor in the 26th year of queen Elizabeth, was
son of William Pullocil, of Foot's Cray.
SIDCUP is a hamlet in this parish, lying on the Maidstone road, and was so called from a family who formerly possessed much land in and about it. Thomas de
Sedcopp was owner of this estate in the 35th year of
king Henry VI. as appears by his deed; wherein styling himself of Chesilhurst, he grants to Bernard Cavell, gent. of the same place, a parcel of his land here,
called Estfeld and Groves. It consists at present of a
small street of houses, among which is an inn of much
resort, and two or three gentlemens houses, the principal of which is a seat which belonged to Christopher
Hull, esq. who resided here, and died possessed of it in
1790, having married the widow of Mr. Eastchurch,
of Maidstone, sister of Lewis Cage, esq. by whom he
had no issue. He devised his interest in it to his nephew of the same name, now of London, gent. who is
at present intitled to his interest in it, but it is in the
occupation of lady Hardy.
There are no parochial charities.
This parish is within the ECCLESIASTICAL JURISDICTION of the diocese of Rochester and deanry of
Dartford. The church stands at the back of the village on the north side, close to the corner of Foot's
Cray park. It is a small mean building, consisting of
two isles and a chancel, having a low spire steeple at the
west end, and is seemingly of high antiquity. It is dedicated to All Saints.
In this church, among others, are the following monuments
and inscriptions:—In the chancel, a grave-stone and memorial for
John, the insant son of Sir Robert Marsham, and Margaret, his
wife, obt. 1682; a grave-stone and brass plate and inscription in
black letter, for Thomas Myton, rector of this church, obt. Jan.
30, 1489; on the south side a small monument and inscription,
shewing that in the cemetery at the east end of this chancel, is
buried William Smith, rector of this parish, obt. Aug. 4, 1765.
In the north chancel, on an altar tomb, under an arch on the north
side, are the figures in stone of a man in armour and his wife,
with their heads resting on cushions, that of the man is much broken, but the woman is entire, with a dog at her feet; they are
very antient, and of rude sculpture; Philipott says they represent
Sir Simon de Vaughan and his wife, and were entire when Robert Glover made his collections of the Kentish monuments. In
the east window of the great chancel are these arms, very antient,
argent, a chevron gules between three mullets pierced sable, impaling argent a faltier engrailed azure, bearing the arms of Abell. (fn. 4)
The advowson of this church was part of the possessions of the priory of St. Mary Overy in Southwark,
so early as the reign of king Edward I. (fn. 5) and seems to
have been part of that moiety of this place which the
prior paid aid for, in the 20th year of king Edward III.
as hath been already mentioned.
The patronage of it continued in the prior and convent of St. Mary Overie till its final dissolution, which
happened in the 31st year of king Henry VIII. when
the priory, together with the revenues and possessions
belonging to it, were surrendered into the king's hands. (fn. 6)
The advowson of this church, thus becoming part of
the royal revenues, has remained fixed there ever since,
the king being the present patron of this rectory.
In the 15th year of king Edward I. this church was
valued at one hundred shillings. (fn. 7)
This rectory is a discharged living in the king's
books, of the clear yearly certified value of 421. 17s.
the yearly tenths of which are 16s. 4d. (fn. 8)
By virtue of a commission of enquiry in 1650; issuing
out of chancery, it was returned, that Foot's Cray was
a parsonage sequestered, with a house and seven acres
of land, all worth thirty-five pounds per annum, one
master May preaching there. (fn. 9)
Church Of Foot's Cray.
|Or by whom presented.|
|Prior and Convent of St. Mary
Overy.||Thomas Myton, obt. Jan. 30,
|The King.||John Smith, in 1557. (fn. 10) |
|Adam Wilson, D. D. June 25,
1633, obt. 1634. (fn. 11) |
|Edward Foliatt, L.L.B. June
9, 1634. (fn. 12) |
|John Rowlands, M. A. presented June 12, 1734, obt.
1660. (fn. 13) |
|Isaac Hunt, clerk, 1690.|
|John Hancocks, clerk, presented
|John Whittell, 1720, obt. 1726.|
|Richard Lucas, instit. July 26,
|—Uffington, May 12, 1739.|
|William Smith, 1747, obt. Aug.
|—Gwyn, June 1766.|
|Thomas Moore, M. A. 1768. Presentrector.
(fn. 14) |