The History and Topographical Survey of the County of Kent: Volume 6. Originally published by W Bristow, Canterbury, 1798.
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LIES the next parish north-westward from Ore, and was, in the reign of the Conqueror, called Cildresham, by which name it is described in the survey of Domesday.
IT is situated about a mile northward of the high London road from Judde-hill, the southern part of it reaching up to Bizing wood, part of which is within it. It lies very low and flat; the arable lands in it, which consist of about three hundred and ninety-six acres, and the upland, meadow, and pasture, of about two hundred acres, are very rich and fertile; near one half of it is marsh land, which reaches to the waters of the Swale, which are its northern boundary.
The church stands nearly in the middle of the upland part of it, and the parsonage-house, which has a mote round it, near half a mile southward of it, close to Bysing-wood. There is no village, and not more than ten houses in the parish, the unhealthiness of its situation occassions its being but very thinly inhabited, those who risk their lives in it seldom attaining any great age.
THERE ARE some parts of this parish which lie at some distance from the rest of it, several other parishes intervening: in Perry-field, almost opposite the 47th mile-stone on the high London road, but on the other or south side of it, there are twenty-two acres of land, and between Goodneston and Boughton under Blean, there are thirty-two acres of land belonging to this parish. There are many instances of the like in different parts of this county, and in this neighbourhood in particular there are several, for a part of the parish of Morton, near Sittingborne, lies within this parish of Luddenham, and entirely surrounded by it, several other parishes intervening between this part of Murston and the rest of it. Part of Preston parish lies near Davington-hill; Upleez farm, the property of lord Romney, which lies westward of Ore, is in Faversham parish; and part of Ospringe parish lies surrounded by the town of Faversham and its liberties.
MR. JACOB among his Plantæ a Favershamienses, has given a list of a number of scarce plants found by him in this parish, to which the reader is referred for an account of them.
THIS PLACE was part of the vast possessions of Odo, bishop of Baieux, under the general title of whose lands it is thus entered in the survey of Domesday:
Anssrid holds of the bishop of Baieux Cildresham. It was taxed at one suling. The arable land is three carucates. In demesne there is one carucate and an half. There are five servants, and two acres of meadow. There is wood, but it pays nothing.
Upon the bishop's disgrace, about four years afterwards, this estate came to the crown, among the rest of this possessions, whence it was granted by the king, among other lands, to Fulbert de Dover, for his assistance, in the defence of Dover castle. These lands were held of the king in capite by barony, the tenant being bound by his tenure to maintain a certain number of soldiers, from time to time, for the defence of the castle.
Of Fulbert de Dover and his heirs, this place was held, as one knight's fee, of the honour of Chilham, which they made the caput baroniæ, or chief seat of their barony.
THE MANOR OF LUDDENHAM came afterwards into the possession of a family who fixed their name on it. William de Luddenham, in the 13th year of king John's reign, held it as one knight's see, of the honor of Chilham, in manner as before mentioned. His heirs, in the next reign of Henry III. sold this manor to the Northwoods, one of whom, Sir Roger de Northwood, in the 41st year of that reign, procured licence to alter the tenure of his lands from gavelkind to that of knight's service, of which there is a recapitulation in the Book of Aid, and among them mention is made of ninety acres of marsh land, which lay partly in his manor of Luddenham, and partly in Iwase.
From the family of Northwood this manor passed into that of Frogenhall; John de Frogenhall, at the latter end of king Edward the IIId.'s reign, died possessed of it, with an appendage called Bishopsbush. After which it at length descended in the beginning of king Edward the IVth.'s reign to Thomas Frogenhall, who married Joane, daughter and heir of William de Apulderfield, and dying in 1576, being the 17th year of that reign, was buried with his wife in Faversham church; their daughter and sole heir Anne, carried this manor in marriage to Mr. Thomas Quadring, of London, and he in like manner leaving one sole daughter and heir Joane. she entitled her husband Richard Dryland, of Cooksditch, in Faversham, to the possession of it. He alenated the appendage of Bishopsbush above-mentioned, to Crispe, who passed it away to Mr. William Hayward, from which name it went in marriage to Mr. Thomas Southhouse, gent. who possessed it at the end of king Charles I.'s reign; but both the name and situation of the estate have been for some time so totally for gotten, that the most diligent enquiries cannot trace out either of them.
But the manor of Luddenham itself went with Katherine, the sole daughter and heir of Richard Dryland, in marriage to Reginald Norton, of Lees-court, in Sheldwich, from which name it passed by sale, in king James I.'s reign, to Francis Cripps, esq. who sold it to Kirton, from which name it passed, in king James II.'s reign, to John Briant, esq. whose heirs passed it away, in king George I.'s reign, to Mr. John Blaxland, and his heirs alienated it, about the year 1753, to Beversham Filmer, esq. of London, a younger son of Sir Robert Filmer, bart. of East Sutton, and of Lincoln's-inn, barrister-at-law. He died ununmarried, and full of years, in 1763, (fn. 1) having by his will given this manor, among the rest of his lands in this county and elsewhere, to his eldest nephew, Sir John Filmer, bart. of East Sutton, who died s. p. in 1797, and by will devised this estate to his next brother, Sir Bevertham Filmer, bart. the present owner of it. A court baron is held for his manor.
At the court held for the manor of Chilham, the tenant of this manor is constantly presented by the jury for default of service, as being held of it under the notion of one knight's fee, and he is always amerced at two shillings, the payment of which is never with-held by him.
HAM is a principal estate, adjoining to the marshes, at the eastern boundary of this parish, and partly in that part of Preston which is separated from the rest of it by Davington and Ospringe intervening, being within that appendage to the manor of Copton, called from hence Hamme marsh. This estate, for several generations, belonged to the family of Roper, lords Teynham, and was sold in 1766 by Henry Roper, lord Teynham, to Mr. William Chamberlain, of London, who sold it to Benjamin Hatley Foote, Esq. and his son George Talbot Hatley Foote, Esq. now owns it.
NASHES is an estate in this parish, which formerly belonged to the Coppingers; Ambrose Coppinger possessed it in the reign of queen Elizabeth, whence it passed to the Brewsters, who were owners of much land at Linsted, Tenham, and other parts of this neighbourhood; from them it was sold to Mr. James Tassell, of Linsted; after which it became the property of Dr. Dravid Jones, and afterwards of Mr. Anthony Ingles, gent. of Ashford, who in 1776 conveyed it be sale to Mr. James Tappenden, gent. of Faversham, the present owner of it, who is descended from those of this name, who were for several generations resident at Sittingborne, where several of them lie buried, and are said to be extracted from the Denne of Tappenden, in Smarden, and bear for their arms, Or, two lions passant, in chief, and one in base, rampant, azure.
Thomas Streynsham, gent. of Faversham, was possessed of a farm of 16l. per annum in this parish, Out of the profits of which, by his will in 1585, he devised 3l. per annum for ever, to the use of the poor of that parish.
The poor constantly relieved are about twenty; casually twelve.
Luddenham is within the ECCLESIASTICAL JURISDICTION of the diocese of Canterbury, and deanry of Ospringe.
The church, which is dedicated to St. Mary, is a small building, consisting of one isle and one chancel, having a tower steeple on the north side of it, in which are three bells.
This church was formerly an appendage to the manor of Luddenham, and as such came into the possession of William de Luddenham before-men tioned, lord of it, who, as appears by the leiger-book of the abbey of Faversham, gave this church to the abbot and convent there, which he did by placing his knife on the altar in the church of their convent, and this with the consent of his daughter and heir Matilda, and of Gaysle his wife, in the presence of the convent, and many of the clergy and laity, which gift was confirmed afterwards by Sir William de Insula, who married his daughter; notwithstanding which, William de Insula their son, laid claim to it as part of his inheritance, and a suit was commenced in the beginning of king John's reign, by him, against the abbot and convent, to recover the possession of it, which seems to have been determined in his favor, and the religious were forced to be contented with the pension of 66s. 8d. to be paid to them yearly out of it. (fn. 2). This pension they continued to enjoy from it till the time of their dissolution, in the 30th year of Henry VIII. when it came, with the rest of their possessions, into the king's hands, who settled it, among other premises, in his 33d year, on his new-founded dean and chapter of Canterbury, who continue to receive it from the rector at this time.
The determination of the above-mentioned suit against the religious, did not put them out of hopes of, some time or other, recovering the possession of this church, the appropriation of which they got to be inserted in a confirmation of some of their possessions by pope Gregory X. in 1274; but this did not avail them any thing, for this church still continued unappropriated, as it does at this time, being esteemed a rectory, the patronage of which has been for a great length of time in the crown.
The church of Luddenham is valued in the king's books at 12l. 8s. 4d. and the yearly tenths at 1l. 4s. 10d. In 1578, here were communicants fifty-four. The crown patron.
In 1640 there were communicants sixty-eight. The yearly value of it one hundred pounds. It is now esteemed of the same clear yearly value.
There is a modusclaimed for five hundred and thirtyone acres of the marsh lands in this parish, almost all of which are at two-pence, though there are some few at four-pence per acre.
Church of Luddenham.
|Or by whom presented.|
|The Crown.||Peter Jackson, A. M. March 15, 1590, resigned 1604.|
|Joseph Davis, A. M. Oct. 29, 1604.|
|John Priestley, A. M. Jan. 16, 1618.|
|Samuel Wilkinson, A. M. Aug. 19, 1625. (fn. 3)|
|Edward Burton, S T. P. Dec. 14, 1632, resigned 1638. (fn. 4)|
|James Gentleman, A. M. July 30, 1638. (fn. 5)|
|Nathaniel Newbury, A. M. May 8, 1645. (fn. 6)|
|James Cowes. A. M. April 10, 1661.|
|John Sherwin, A. M. Jan. 23, 1674, obt. Jan. 17, 1713. (fn. 7)|
|Robert Harrison, A. M. March 3, 1713, obt. 1755. (fn. 8)|
|Wheler Twyman, May 26, 1755. obt. Nov. 25, 1779. (fn. 9)|
|William Gurney, Feb. 1, obt. April, 1784. (fn. 10)|
|John Tucker, A. M. June, 1784, the present rector. (fn. 11)|