The History and Topographical Survey of the County of Kent: Volume 5. Originally published by W Bristow, Canterbury, 1798.
This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.
NORTH-WESTWARD from Hunton lies Yalding, antiently written Ealding, which signifies the antient meadow or low ground.
Most of this parish is in the hundred of Twyford, and the rest of it, viz. the borough of Rugmerhill, is in the antient demesne of Aylesford. That part of this parish, which holds of the manor of West Farleigh, is in the borough of West Farleigh, and the borsholder thereof ought to be chosen at the court leet there, and so much thereof as is held of the manor of Hunton, is in the borough of Hunton, and the borsholder thereof is chosen at the court leet there; and the inhabitants of neither of these boroughs owe service to the court holden for the hundred of Twyford, within which hundred they both are; but at that court a constable for that hundred may be chosen out of either of these boroughs.
THIS PARISH lying southward of the quarry hills, is within the district of the Weald. It is but narrow, but extends full four miles in length from north to south, the upper or northern part reaches up to the quarry hill adjoining to West Farleigh, near which is Yalding down, on which is a large kiln for the purpose of burning pit coal into coke, which is effected by laying the coal under earth, and when set on fire quenching the cinders; the method is used in making charcoal from wood, the former particularly is much used in the oasts for the drying of hops, so profitably encouraged in this neighbourhood. Below it, near the river Medway, its western boundary in this part, opposite to Nettlested, stands the seat of Sir John Gregory Shaw, bart. a retired, but not an ill chosen situation. It was for several generations the residence of the family of Kinward, which from the reign of king Henry VIII. was possessed of good estates in this parish and its neighbourhood, and bore for their arms, Azure, on a bend or, three roses gules, between three cross-croslets, fitchee argent. Robert Kenward, esq. of Yalding, resided here, and dying in 1720, was buried with the rest of his family in this church; he left a son John, and several daughters, of whom the third, Martha, married the late Sir Gregory Page, bart. and died S. P. John Kenward, esq. the son, died in 1749, leaving by Alicia his wife, youngest daughter of Francis Brooke, esq. of Rochester, one daughter and heir Alicia, who carried this seat and a considerable estate in this neighbourhood to Sir John Shaw, bart. late of Eltham, whose eldest son, Sir John Gregory Shaw, bart. is the present owner of it, and resides here. (fn. 1). In this part of the parish the land is kindly both for corn and hops, of which there are several plantations, and round the down there are some rich grass lands, but further southward where the parish extends to Brenchley, Horsemonden, and Mar den, it is rather a sorlorn country, the land lying very low, and the soil is exceeding wet and miry, and much of it very poor, and greatly subject to rushes, being a stiff unfertile clay; the hedge rows are broad and interspersed with quantities of large spreading oak trees.
The river Medway flows from Tunbridge along the west side of the upper part of this parish as mentioned before, there are across it here two bridges, Twyford and Brandt bridge, leading hither from Watringbury, Nettlested and East Peckham; a small stream, which comes from Marden, and is here called the Twist, flows through the lower part of this parish towards the west side of it, and joins the main river at Twyford bridge, which extends over both of them; another larger stream being a principal head of the Medway flowing from Style-bridge by Hunton clappers, separating these two parishes, joins the main river, about a quarter of a mile below Twyford bridge; on the conflux of these two larger streams the town of Yalding is situated, having a long narrow stone bridge of communication from one part of the town to the other, on the opposite bank of the Hunton stream. Leland who lived in king Henry the VIIIth.'s reign, calls it a a praty townelet, to which however at present it has no pretensions. The church and court-lodge stand at the north end of the town. A fair is held in it on WhitMonday, and on October 15, yearly. The high road over Teston bridge, and through West Farleigh, leads through the town, and thence southward along the hamlets of Denover and Collens-street to Marden; at a small distance from the former is the borough of Rugmarhill, esteemed to be within the antient demesne of Aylesford, belonging to Mrs. Milner.
Adjoining the town southward is Yalding lees, over which there is another high road, which leads from Twyford bridge, parallel with the other before-mentioned, along the hamlet of Lodingford, and thence through the lower part of this parish towards Brenchley, near the boundaries of which in this parish is an estate still called Oldlands, which appears in king Edward II's reign to have been part of the demesne lands of the manor of Yalding, for he then confirmed to the priory of Tunbridge a rent charge to be received out of the asserts of the old and new lands of the late Richard de Clare, in Dennemannesbrooke, which he had given to it on its foundation; lower down, close to the stream of the Twist, is the manor house of Bockingsold, the lands of which extend across the river into Brenchley and Horsemonden and other parishes.
A third high road over Brandt bridge passes along the western bounds of this parish, over Betsurn-green towards Lamberhurst and Sussex.
A new commission of sewers under the great seal, was not many years ago obtained to scour and cleanse that branch of the river Medway, or if I may so call it, the Yalding river from Goldwell in Great Chart, through Smarden, Hunton, and other intermediate parishes to its junction with the Rain river, at a place called Stickmouth, a little below the town of Yalding.
The commissioners for the navigation of the river Medway, about twenty years ago, made a navigable cut or canal, from a place in the river called Hampsted, where they judiciously constructed a lock to a place in the river near Twyford bridge, where they erected a tumbling bay for the water, when at a certain height, to pass over. The contrivance of this cut from one bend or angle of the river to the other, is of the greatest utility to the navigation, by not only shortening the passage, but by baying up a convenient depth of water, which they could not have had along the lees, and other adjoining low lands on each side of that part of the river, which is avoided by it, or at least not without a very great expence.
At the river here the barges are loaded with timber, great guns, bullets, &c. for Chatham and Sheerness docks, London, and other parts, and bring back coals, and other commodities for the supply of the neighbouring country.
In 1757 a large eel was caught in the river here, which measured five feet nine inches in length, and eighteen inches in girt, and weighed upwards of forty pounds.
THE MANOR OF YALDING, or Ealding, as it was usually written, was, after the conquest, part of the possessions of the eminent family of Clare, who became afterwards earls of Gloucester and Hertford, (fn. 2) the ancestor of whom, Richard Fitz Gilbert, came into England with William the Conqueror, and gave him great assistance in the memorable battle of Hastings, and in respect of his near alliance in blood to the king, he was advanced to great honor, and had large possessions bestowed upon him, both in Normandy and England; among the latter was this estate of Yalding, as appears from the survey of Domesday, taken in the 15th year of the Conqueror's reign, in which it is thus entered, under the title of Terra Richardi F. Gislebti:
Richard de Tonebridge holds Ealdinges, and Aldret held it of king Edward, and then and now it was taxed at two sulings. The arable land is sixteen carucates. There are two churches (viz. Yalding and Brenchley) and fifteen servants, and two mills of twenty-five shillings, and four fisheries of one thousand and seven hundred eels, all but twenty. There are five acres of pasture, and wood for the pannage of one hundred and fifty hogs.
In the time of king Edward the Consessor, and afterwards, it was worth thirty pounds, now twenty pounds, on account of the lands lying waste to that amount.
The above-mentioned Richard Fitz Gilbert, at the latter end of the Conqueror's reign, was usually called Richard de Tonebridge, from his possessions and residence there, and his descendants took the name of Clare, for the like reason of their possessing that honor. His descendant, Gilbert, son of Richard de Clare, earl of Gloucester and Hertford, owned it in the reign of king Henry III. and in the 21st year of Edward I. he claimed before the justices itinerant, and was allowed all the privileges of a manor.
Gilbert de Clare, earl of Gloucester and Hertford, his son, by Joane, of Acres, king Edward I.'s daughter, succeeded to it, and dying in the 7th year of king Edward II. without surviving issue, his three sisters became his coheirs, and on the partition of their inheritance, this manor, among others in this county, was allotted to Margaret, the second sister, then wife of Hugh de Audley, junior, who in the 12th year of Edward II. obtained for his manor of Ealding, a market to be held here weekly, and a fair to continue three days yearly, viz. the vigil, the day of the feast of St. Peter and St. Paul, and the day subsequent to it. He died in the 21st year of it, holding this manor, which he held for his life, by the law of England, of the king in capite. He left an only daughter and heir Margaret, then the wife of Ralph Stafford, who in her right became possessed of the manor of Yalding, and was a man greatly esteemed by king Edward III. who among other marks of his favor, in his 24th year, advanced him to the title of earl of Stafford.
After which it continued in his descendants down to his great grandson, Humphry Stafford, who was created duke of Buckingham anno 23 Henry VI. whose grandson Henry, duke of Buckingham, having put himself in arms against king Richard, in favor of Henry, earl of Richmond, and being deserted by his army, had concealed himself in the house of one Ralph Banister, who had been his servant, who on the king's proclamation of a reward of 1000l. or 100l. per annum, for the discovering of the duke, betrayed him, and he was without either arraignment or judgment, beheaded at Salisbury.
In reward for this service, the king immediately afterwards granted this manor to the before-mentioned Ralph Banister, to hold by knight's service. But on the death of king Richard, and the accession of the earl of Richmond to the crown, this manor returned to Edward, duke of Buckingham, eldest son and heir of the above-mentioned duke, who in the 13th year of the next reign of king Henry VIII. being accused of conspiring the king's death, was found guilty, and beheaded on Tower-hill that year. He was afterwards attainted by parliament, and though his son Henry was restored in blood by another act, yet it did not extend to his honors and lands. So that the manor of Yalding becoming thus forfeited to the crown, the king granted it that year to Charles Somerset, earl of Worcester, to hold in capite by knight's service. (fn. 3) He was the natural son of Henry, duke of Somerset, and being a person of great parts, was much favored both by king Henry VII. and VIII. and arrived at high advancement both in honors and estates. By reason of his marriage with Elizabeth, sole daughter and heir of William Herbert, earl of Huntington, he bore the title of lord Herbert, of Cherbury; being first made a knight banneret, then knight of the garter, and afterwards captain of the king's guards, a privy counsellor, and lord chamberlain, which office he continued in after the accession of king Henry VIII. who continued him of his privy council, and conferred several important trusts on him; and by reason of his noble descent, and near alliance to the king in blood, as the patent imports, he was, in the 5th year of that reign, made earl of Worcester, bearing for his arms, France and England quarterly, a bordure gobony argent and azure, with a battoon finister argent, his solemn creation being performed at the archbishop's palace at Lambeth the same day. He alienated this manor to George Nevill, lord Bergavenny, whose son Henry, lord Bergavenny, dying without male issue, this manor, among other estates, came to Edward Nevill, son of Sir Edward Nevill, a younger brother of George, lord Bergavenny, before-mentioned, (fn. 4) and his eldest son Edward, lord Bergavenny, alienated this manor to Isaac, who again passed it away by sale to the Freers, of Westmington, in Sussex; from whom it was sold, about the year 1670, to Thomas Brewer, esq. of Smith's hall, in West Farleigh, in whose descendants it continued till John Brewer, esq. leaving an only daughter and heir Jane, who married John Carney, esq. and 2dly, John Shrimpton, esq. both of whom she survived, and died in 1762 without issue. She devised this manor, among the rest of her estates, to her kinsman, the Rev. Dr. John Davis, prebendary of Canterbury, whose son John Davis, esq. in 1774, alienated it to William Philip Perrin, esq. of Smith's hall, and he immediately afterwards exchanged it for some other lands lying near his house, with Mrs. Elizabeth Bouverie, of Teston, who is the present proprietor of it.
A court baron is held for this manor.
WOODFOLDE is a manor in this parish, which lies about half a mile fouth-eastward from Brandt bridge, and was held in the reign of king Edward II. by Anceline Quyntin, and the heirs of Daniel de Lodneford, who held it of George Cham, as he did of the earl of Gloucester. In the 20th year of king Edward III. Robert Reickyn, by his wife, sister of John de Lodneford, paid respective aid for it. One of his descendants alienated it to Burton, in whose family it continued till the reign of Henry VIII. when Robert Burton's heirs passed it away by sale to that branch of the family of Fane, seated at Burston, in the adjoining parish of Hunton. After which it continued in this family in like manner as Burston, down to John Fane, earl of Westmoreland, who died S. P. in 1762, and it is now with that manor, as well as Mereworth, at length by the limitations in his will, come to the right hon. Thomas, lord le Despencer, the present owner of it.
THE MANOR OF LODINGFORD, alias BERMONDESEY, lies about half a mile eastward from Woodsold manor last described. It acquired the latter of these names from a family, who were proprietors of it. In the reign of king Edward II. Hugh de Bermondesey was the possessor of it, and his heirs, in the 20th year of king Edward III. paid aid for it as the tenth part of a knight's fee, which he before held in Yalding of the earl of Gloucester. How this manor passed afterwards, till it came into the possession of the family of Wood, I have not found; but William Wood was owner of it in the latter end of the reign of king Henry VIII. and his descendant, Thomas Wood, alienated it to Fane, from which name it passed into that of Austin, and continued in it till Mrs. Austin, of London, devised it by her last will to Mary, daughter of Mr. Piggott, of Cambridge, who marrying the Rev. William Foster, D.D. he is in her right the present possessor of it. A court baron is held for this manor.
JENNINGS-COURT is a manor which lies in the parishes of Yalding, Nettlested, and West Barming, and is held of the manor of Pipping-heath, though it seems once to have been accounted as a third part of West Barming manor, extending into this parish. In the 20th year of king Edward III. as has been already mentioned before in the description of that manor, it seems to have been then held by John de Huntingdon, how long it continued in that name I do not find, but in the 10th year of king Henry the VIth.'s reign, Thomas Knot, of Yalding, died possessed of it, by the name of part of the manor of West Barming, otherwise called Pimpe, in this parish of Yalding. He seems to have alienated it to Thomas Attewood, whose descendant John Atwood, died in the 3d year of king Henry VIII. possessed of this estate, then called Gennyngs, alias West Barming, in this parish, and West Barming, part of it being held in capite, and the remainder of the duke of Buckingham, after which it appears to have been given, by the name of the manor of Jennings-court, to Brazen Nose college, in Oxford, part of the possessions of which it remains at this time.
In 1687 this manor was held by lease from the above-mentioned college, by Allmott Peers, who alienated his interest in it soon afterwards to John Kenward, esq of this parish, who died possessed of it in 1708, and his grandson, John Kenward, esq. dying without male issue in 1749, his daughter Martha carried her interest in the lease of this manor in marriage to Sir John Shaw, bart. of Eltham, whose grandson, Sir John Gregory Shaw, bart. is the present lessee of it. A court baron is held for this manor.
BOKINGFOLD is a manor of large extent, the only house on which is situated just within the southern bounds of this parish, though the demesnes extended into those of Brenchley, Horsemonden, Marden, and Goudhurst; the mansion of it is continually mentioned in records and antient deeds, as being within the former of those parishes, the bounds of which must therefore have been changed, or the present house on this manor could not be that which was antiently esteemed the mansion of it; there was a free chapel belonging to it, and adjoining to it was a park, or forest, of no small extent.
In the reign of king Henry III. this manor was in the possession of the family of Crevequer, of whom Hamo de Crevequer died possessed of it in the 47th year of that reign, it being at that time a member of the manor of Chatham, which he held of the king by barony. (fn. 5) Robert his grandson, siding with the rebellious barons, this manor was seized on by the king, where it rested till king Edward II. in his second year, granted it, together with the free chapel of it, in fee, to Bartholomew de Badlesmere, for the annual rent of twenty-five pounds at his exchequer.
On a quo warranto brought in the 21st year of king Edward I. this manor being then in the crown, it was found that the collection of it belonged to the king, and was worth about ten marcs per annum, and that John de Capgrave was then in possession of it, of the collation of the prior of Leeds, who alledged that he possessed the advowson of it by the gift of Hamo de Crevequer, and that though queen Alianor had presented to it in right of her manor of Leeds, yet that after her death, it had been determined, with the king's consent, that it should be restored to the prior, and this was testified by John de Berewick, &c. Notwithstanding which, the king granted away this advowson to Bartholomew de Badlesmere as above-mentioned, who, upon an exchange made between the king and him, six years afterwards, had another grant made to him in see of this manor and chapel, to hold in socage, by the service of paying one pair of clove gilliflowers, by the hands of the sheriff, (fn. 6) and next year he obtained many liberties and privileges for his estates and free warren, for his demesne lands of this manor, among others. (fn. 7) But afterwards siding with the earl of Lancaster, and other discontented barons, he was with them deseated and put to death, and this manor, among his other estates, was consiscated to the crown.
Whilst this manor was in the crown, the king in his 19th year, withdrew to it, on the charge of his intention of visiting France for the performance of his homage due for the duchy of Aquitaine, and during his stay here, Hamo de Hethe, bishop of Rochester, the king's confessor, sent him a present both of wine and grapes, from his vineyard at Halling, near Rochester, and before he left it, finding many persons had unlawfully hunted in his park of Bokinfold, he commanded that they should be indicted for the trespasses and irregularities they had committed in it; (fn. 8) the large extent of it, and its wild appearance, covered with large and thick woods, gaining it the name of a forest, by which appellation Twine in his treatise, de Rebus Albionicis, mentions it, calling it the forest of Buckenwald, near Tunbridge.
After which, the king granted it, with the advowson of the chapel, to Thomas de Camvill, by the abovementioned service, and he died in the 4th year of king Edward III. upon which the king confirmed it to Giles de Badlesmere, son of Bartholomew above mentioned, as being of his inheritance, and confirmed to him the grant of it made by his father in his second year. He died in the 12th year of the same reign, S. P. leaving his four sisters his coheirs, (fn. 9) and upon the parting of their inheritance this manor, with fifty acres of wood, belonging to it, was assigned to Maud, the eldest sister, wife of John de Vere, earl of Oxford, and another fifty acres of wood belonging to it, to Margaret the youngest sister, married to John de Tibetot. (fn. 10)
Robert de Vere, earl of Oxford, grandson of John above-mentioned, was the great favorite of Richard II. who created him duke of Ireland, and thought no accumulation of wealth and honors sufficient to testify his great affection to him, but this prodigality of the king's favor made him so haughty and insolent, that he was at length accused of treason, and banished, and all his possessions were confiscated, except his intailed lands, which only were to remain to his right heirs, (fn. 11) but the duke never became possessed of this manor, which at the above time remained in the possession of Maud, the widow of his father Thomas, earl of Oxford, as part of her dower, and the inheritance of it was probably part of those estates of the duke, confiscated as before-mentioned, for soon afterwards this manor appears to have been granted to Thomas, duke of Gloucester, the king's uncle, who in the 17th year of that reign settled it, being then held in capite, on his newfounded college at Plecy, in Essex. (fn. 12)
On the death of the countess of Oxford, in the 14th year of king Henry IV. the master and priests of the above college took possession of this manor, and the advowson of the chapel of it, and it continued with them till their dissolution in the 27th year of king Henry VIII. when being one of those lesser houses, whose revenues did not amount to two hundred pounds per annum, it was surrendered into the king's hands, and was granted, together with this manor and other premises, in the 38th year of that reign, to John Gate, or Gates, esq. as he was commonly called, gentleman of the king's privy chamber, to hold in capite. He was knighted in the next reign, and in the 2d and 3d years of it his lands were disgavelled by the act then passed, but after king Edward's death, being concerned in advancing lady Jane Grey to the crown, he was, with the duke of Northumberland, and others of that party, found guilty of high treason, and beheaded in the 1st year of queen Mary. This man was a great dealer in the suppressed religious houses, the churches of which he never scrupled to pull down, to destroy (fn. 12) their monuments, and to sell the plunder of them to his own advantage; (fn. 13) being attainted, his lands became forfeited to the crown, and the queen before the end of that year, granted the manor of Bockingfield, with its appurtenances, to Susan Tong, to hold in capite, and she in the 3d year of the queen's reign, alienated it to Thomas Culpepper, esq. of Bedgbury, who was sheriff in the 3d year of king Edward VI. his eldest son Alexander Colepeper, in the 6th year of queen Elizabeth, alienated that part of this manor which lay in Goudhurst, under which parish a further account of it may be seen, to Sharpeigh, and the other part of it, which lay in Yalding, Brenchley, Marden, and Horsmonden, to Roger Revell, but it must be observed, that the free chapel of Bockingfold, after Sir John Gates's attaint, remained in the crown, and continued so till queen Elizabeth granted it to Richard Tilden, of Brenchley. (fn. 14)
That part of this manor of Bockingfield, lying in this parish, Brenchley, and Horsmonden, in the possession of Roger Revell, was in the 17th year of that reign, by fine then levied, conveyed to Benedict Barnham, alderman of London, who died in 1598, leaving four daughters his coheirs, (fn. 15) and on the division of their inheritance, Bridget the youngest, married to Sir William Soame, intitled her husband to this estate. He sold it in the beginning of king Charles the 1st.'s reign, to Mr. George Brown, of Buckland, in Surry, who bore for his arms, Gules, a griffin passant segreant, and a chief or, which was assigned by William Segar, garter, to John Browne, of Brenchley, who married the daughter of Richard Tilden, of that parish abovementioned, and he in 1685 conveyed it to his brother Ambrose Browne, of Buckland, who in 1693 passed it away to Mr. William Woodgate, of Chidingstone, and his great grandson William Woodgate, esq. of Somerhill, in Tunbridge, is the present owner of it.
THE COURT LODGE of the manor of Yalding, and all the demesne lands belonging to it, have been long separated from the manor itself, and have been many years in the family of Plumer, the present proprietor of it being William Plumer, esq. of Hertfordshire, and M.P. for that county.
HENHURST is an estate in this parish, which was formerly held by a family of that name. In the reign of king Edward II. Gilbert de Henhurst held half a knight's fee in Henhurst, of the earl of Gloucester, for which, in the 20th year of king Edward III. Richard Totesham, Henry Gervas, and John de Sandherst, paid respective aid. This estate continued in the name of Totesham till the reign of king Henry VIII. when Anthony Totesham, esq. of Totesham-hall, in West Farleigh, alienated it to Thomas Chapman; from which name it passed by sale to Laurence, and thence again to Augustine Skinner, esq. one of whose descendants conveyed it to Goulston, and Francis Goulston, about the year 1726, sold it, with Totesham-hall and other estates in these parts, having the authority of an act of parliament for this purpose, to Sir Philip Boteler, bart. of Teston, who died possessed of it in 1772, without issue, and by will gave it among his other estates to Mrs. Elizabeth Bouverie, of Chart Sutton, Elizabeth, viscountess dowager Folkestone, and William Bouverie, earl of Radnor, since deceased; and on a partition of these estates, this at Yalding was, among others, allotted to Mrs. Elizabeth Bouverie, now of Teston, the present possessor of it.
ANOTHER ESTATE in this parish, called Kenward's farm, was formerly in the possession of the Twisdens, in whose possession it continued till Sir Thomas Twisden, bart. of Bradbourn, and Anne his wife, in the reign of king George I. conveyed it to Sir Philip Boteler, bart. of Teston, who died S. P. in 1772, since which it has become by his will, and a partition made since, in like manner as Henherst above-mentioned, the property of Mrs. Elizabeth Bouverie, of Teston.
There is a district in this parish, called Trendherst Denn, which is within the manor of Gillingham, near Rochester.
WILLIAM CLEAVE, citizen and haberdasher of London, in the year 1663, founded and endowed a free school in this parish, for teaching the parishioners of it reading, writing, and arithmetic.
MRS. ALKHORNE, of Crowhurst, in Sussex, and her sister MRS. BENNET WARDE, of Yalding, widow, in 1711, founded and endowed another free school here, for the teaching of 24 poor children, boys and girls; the former to be taught to read the bible, and each to have one given to them; and the latter to be taught reading, knitting, and plain work, to sit them for service.
MRS. JULIAN KENWARD, of Yalding, in 1619, gave by will land in this parish, the produce to be distributed yearly, for four gowns, six shirts and six shirts, to be given to the poor yearly on a Good Friday, now of the annual produce of 3l.
MR. THOMAS CLEAVE, citizen and haberdasher of London, and Mrs. BENNET WARDE, of Yalding, in 1637, gave by deed lands to the value of 5l. 4s. per annum, for thirteen penny loaves, to be given to the poor of this parish not receiving alms, on every Sunday throughout the year, and the residue of the money to be given to the poor on Good Friday.
MRS. JULIAN KENWARD, of this parish, widow, THOMAS TWIFFIN and JOHN TWIFFIN, of Kingston, in Surry, brewers, in 1641, gave by deed lands to the value of 10l. per annum; half of which was to be applied to the schoolmaster to teach five poor children to read, write, &c. and the other half to be given to the poor of this parish, not receiving alms, on Good Friday yearly, now of the annual product of 8l. 10s.
AMBROSE WARD, ESQ. above-mentioned, who died in 1637, bestowed 50l. in land for the use of the poor of this parish for ever.
YALDING is within the ECCLESIASTICAL JURISDICTION of the diocese of Rochester and deanry of Malling.
The church, which is a large handsome building, consists of three isles and a large chancel, with a square tower at the west end. Against the south wall in it is a very antient altar tomb, which has been much desaced, on which is remaining, Ermine, a bend gules. There was formerly a brass plate on it. On a large stone in the middle isle, is a memorial for Robert Penhurst, descended from Sir Robert Penhurst, of Penhurst, in Suffex, who died in 1610. The arms, on a shield, a mullet. In the chancel there is a handsome monument for the family of Warde, who bore for their arms, Azure, a cross flory or, and one for the family of Kenward, in this parish. In the pavement of the church are several large broad stones, a kind of petrifaction of the testaceous kind, dug up in the moors or low lands in this parish.
Richard de Clare, earl of Hertford, gave the church of Aldinges, with the chapel of Brenchesley, and all their appurtenances, in pure and perpetual alms, to the priory of Tunbridge, lately founded by him.
Gilbert de Glanvill, bishop of Rochester, who came to that fee in the 31st year of king Henry II. confirmed this gift, and granted, that the prior and canons should possess the appropriation of this church in pure and perpetual alms; saving a perpetual vicarage in it, granted by his authority, with the assent and presentation of the prior and canons as follows:
That the vicar should have the altarage, and all obventions, and small tithes belonging to this church, and all houses, which were within the court, and the land belonging to the church, together with the tenants and homages, and the alder-bed, and the tithes of sheaves of Wenesmannesbroke, and the tithes of Longesbroke, of the new assart, and the moiety of meadow belonging to the church; all which were granted to him, to hold under the yearly pension of two shillings, duly to be paid to the prior and canons; and that the vicar should sustain all episcopal burthens and customs, as well for the prior and canons as for himself. And he granted to the prior and canons as part of the appropriation, the tithes of sheaves of this church, excepting the said tithes of Wenesmannesbroke, and of Longebroke; and that they should have the moiety of the meadow belonging to the church, with the fisheries, and the place in which the two greater barns stood, with the barns themselves, and the whole outer court in which the stable stood, with the garden which was towards the east, and the small piece of land which lay by the garden, and the rent of four-pence, which ought to be paid yearly to the court of Eyles forde; reserving to himself the power of altering the endowment of this vicarage, if at any time it should seem expedient; saving, nevertheless, all episcopal rights to the bishop of Rochester, &c. (fn. 16)
The church of Yalding, together with the advowson of the vicarage, remained with the priory of Tunbridge, till the suppression of it, in the 17th year of king Henry VIII. when being one of those smaller monasteries which cardinal Wolsey had obtained for the endowment of his colleges, it was surrendered into his hands, with all the possessions belonging to it.
After which the king granted his licence to him, in his 18th year, to appropriate and annex this church, among others of the cardinal's patronage, to the dean and canons of the college founded by him in the university of Oxford. But here it staid only four years, when this great prelate being cast in a præmunire in 1529, the estates of that college were forfeited to the king, and became part of the royal revenue.
Queen Elizabeth, in her 10th year, granted the rectory or parsonage of Yalding, and the advowson of the vicarage, for thirty years, to Mr. John Warde, at the yearly rent of thirty pounds, in whose possession they continued till king James I. in his 5th year, granted the see of them to Richard Lyddale and Edward Bostock, at the like yearly rent, (fn. 17) and they soon afterwards alienated them to Ambrose Warde, gent. of this parish, son of John above-mentioned, in whose descendants they continued down till they came into the possession of three brothers, Thomas, of Littlebrook, in Stone; George and Ambrose, among whose descendants they came afterwards to be divided, and again sub-divided in different shares, one third part to captain Thomas Amhurst, of Rochester; one third of a third part, and a third of a sixth part to Mr. Holmes, of Derby; Mr. Ambrose Ward, of Littlebrook, and the Rev. Mr. Richard Warde, late of Oxford, each alike, and the remaining sixth part by the Rev. Mr. John Warde, the present vicar of this parish, who some years ago rebuilt the vicarage-house in a very handsome manner.
This rectory now pays a yearly fee-farm rent of thirty pounds to the crown.
It is valued in the king's books, at 20l. 18s. 9d. and the yearly tenths at 2l. 1s. 10½d.
There are two separate manors, one belonging to the rectory or parsonage, and the other to the vicarage of this church.
Church of Yalding.
|Or by whom presented.|
|Prior and canons of Tunbridge||Laurence, presented in 1184. (fn. 18)|
|William Sibthorpe, 1411.|
|Nicholas Dunlaugh, 1486. (fn. 19)|
|Nicholas None, 1493. (fn. 20)|
|The Crown.||Robert Cage, 1560. (fn. 21)|
|Ambrose Warde, esq.||Richard Beeston, in 1630.|
|Oliver North, A.M. 1663, ob. May 11, 1675. (fn. 22)|
|Samuel Rhodes, A.M. 1700.|
|John Lyng, A.M. instit. Feb. 13, 1706.|
|John Fuller, A.M. instit. Jan, 1738, obt. July 1751. (fn. 23)|
|Daniel Hill, A.M. resigned 1759. (fn. 24)|
|Mr. Thomas Warde||John Warde, 1759, the present vicar. (fn. 25)|