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-eastward from Stalisfield. It is called in the record of Domesday, Trevelei, in later records Truley and Thruley, in Latin ones Trulega and Truilla; it is now written both Throwley and Throwleigh.
THROWLEY is mostly situated on high ground, it is a more pleasant and open country than that last described, for though wild and romantic among the hills and woods, it is not so dreary and forlorn, nor the soil so uncomfortable, being much drier. Besides it has a more chearful and brighter aspect from the width of the principal valley which leads through it, from north to south, whence the hills rise on each side, with smaller delves interspersed among them. There is a good deal of wood-ground, mostly of beech, interspersed at places with oak and hazel, with some good timber trees of oak among them, especially in the northern and southern parts; much of the former belongs to the dean and chapter of Canterbury. The soil is mostly chalk, the rest a heavy tillage land of red cludy earth, the whole mixed with quantities of flint stones. There are some level lands, especially in the disparked grounds of Throwley park, which are tolerably good, much more so than those in the other parts of the parish; on the east side of the park are the foundations of the antient seat of the Sondes's, with the church close to them, the whole lying on high ground, with a good prospect of the surrounding country; not far from it is Town place, now only a farm-house. There is no village, excepting the few houses in Abraham-street may be so called, the rest of the houses, which are mostly cottages, standing dispersed throughout it, either single, or built round the little greens or softalls, of which there are several in different parts of the parish. On a larger one of these called Wilgate-green, there is a house belonging to the estate of Mr. Philerenis Willis's heirs, and another larger antient one, which with the estate belonging to it, was formerly the property of the Chapmans, and sold by them to Christopher Vane, lord Barnard, in 1789, gave it, with his other estates in this county, to David Papillon, esq. of Acrise, the present owner of it. (fn. 1)
There was a family named Wolgate, from whose residence here this green seems to have taken its name of Wolgate, or Wilgate-green. After they had remained here for some generations they ended in a daughter, for Mr. Ralph Wolgate dying in 1642, his daughter Anne married Mr. William Genery, and entitled him to her father's possessions here, at Posiers, in Borden, and other parts of this county. The Woodwards seem afterwards to have possessed their estate here, several of whom lie buried under a tomb in Throwley church-yard.
About half a mile distant south-westward from Wilgate-green, in Abraham-street, there is a seat, called, from its high situation and expensive prospect, BELMONT; it was built in the year 1769, by Edward Wilks, esq. storekeeper of the royal powdermills at Faversham, who inclosed a paddock or shrubbery round it, and occasionally resided here, till he alienated it in 1779 to John Montresor, esq. the present proprietor, who resides in it.
THE BEECH TREE flourishes in the greatest plenty, as well single to a large size, as in stubs in the coppice woods, which consist mostly of them, as well in these parts as they do in general on the range of chalk hills throughout this county, in some places extending two or three miles in width, and in others much more. The large tracts of ground in this and other counties, overspread with the beech-tree, the random situation of their stubs, and other circumstances which occur in viewing them, are strong proofs of their being the indigenous growth of this island, notwithstanding Cæfar's premptory assertion, in his Commentaries, of there being none here in this time. The Britons, he says, had every material for use and building, the same as the Gauls, excepting the fir and the beech. The former there is positive proof of his being grossly mistaken in, which will in some measure destroy that implicit credit we might otherwise give to his authority, as to the latter; indeed, the continued opposition he met with from the Britons, during his short stay here, assorded him hardly a possibility of seeing any other parts of this country than those near which he landed, and in the direct track through which he marched to wards Coway-stakes; too small a space for him to form any assertion of the general products of a whole country, or even of the neighbouring parts to him. Of those he passed through, the soil was not adapted to the growth of the beech tree; from which we may with great probability suppose, there were none growing on them, nor are there any throughout them, even at this time, a circumstance which most likely induced him to suppose, and afterwards to make the assertion beforementioned.
The slints, with which the cold unfertile lands in these parts, as well as some others in this county, are covered, have been found to be of great use in the bringing forward the crops on them, either by their warmth, or somewhat equivalent to it. Heretofore the occupiers of these lands were anxious to have them picked up and carried off from their grounds, but experiencing the disadvantage of it in the failure of their crops, they, never practice it themselves, and submit to the surveyors of the highways taking them off with great reluctance.
In the parish there are quantities of the great whitish ash coloured shell snail, which are of an unusual large size; they are found likewise near Darking, in Surry, and between Puckeridge and Ware, in Hertsordshire. They are not originally of this island, but have been brought from abroad, many of them are at this time observed in different parts of Italy.
MR. JACOB, in this Plantœ Favershamienses, has enumerated several scare plants observed by him in this parish, besides which, that scarce one, the Orchis myodes, or fly satrition, has been found here, growing on the side of the path, in a small wood, midway between the church and Wilgate green.
THIS PLACE, at the taking of the general survey of Domesday, about the 15th years of the Conqueror's reign, was part of the possessions of Odo, bishop of Baieux, and earl of Kent, the king's half brother, under the general title of whose lands it is thus described in it:
Hersrid holds Trevelai. It was taxed at three sulings. The arable land is eight carucates. In demesne there is one, and twenty-four villeins, with five borderers having six carucates and an half. There is a church, and five servants. Wood for the pannage of twenty bogs, and in the city three houses of thirty-two pence. In the time of king Edward the Conssessor it was worth seven pounds, and afterwards six pounds. Ulnod held it of king Edward.
After which it was held of the king in capite, by barony, by Jeffry de Peverel, and together with other lands made up the barony of Peverel, as it was called, being assigned to him for the defence of Dover-castle, for which purpose he was bound to maintain a certain number of soldiers from time to time for the desence of it, and to repair and defend at this own charge a particular tower or turret there, called afterwards Turris Gattoniana, or Gatton's tower.
In the reign of king Henry III. Robert de Gatton, who took his name from the lordship of Gatton, in Surry, of which his ancestors had been some time owners, was in possession of the manor Thrule, and died in the 38th year of that reign, holding it by knight's service of the king, of the honor of Peverel, by reason of the escheat of that honor, &c. (fn. 2) He was succeded in it by this eldest son Hamo de Gatton, who resided here, and served the office of sheriff in the 14th year of Edward I. His eldest son of the same name left one son Edmund, then an instant, who afterwards dying under age, his two sisters became his coheirs, and divided his inheritance, of which Elizabeth entitled her husband William de Dene to this manor, and all the rest of the estates in Kent; and Margery entitled her husband Simon de Norwood to Gatton, and all the other estates in Surry.
William de Dene had a charter of free warren for his lands in Thurley, in the 10th year of Edward II. He died anno 15 Edward III. then holding this manor by the law of England, as of the inheritance of Elizabeth his late wife deceased, of the king in capite, as of the castle of Dover, by knight's service, and paying to the ward of that castle. His son Thomas de Dene died possessed of it in the 23d year of that reign, leaving four daughters his coheirs, of whom Benedicta, the eldest, married John de Shelving, and entitled him to this manor, on whose death likewise without male issue, his two daughters became his coheirs, of whom, Joane married John Brampton, alias Detling, of Detlingcourt, and Ellen married John de Bourne, the former of whom, in his wife's right, became possessed of this manor. He lest only one daughter Benedicta his heir, who carried it in marriage to Thomas at Town, who was possessed of much land about Charing, and bore for his arms, Argent, on a chevron, sable, three crosscrostess, ermine, which coat is in the windows of Kennington church, impaled with Ellis, of that place. He removed hither in the reign of Henry VI. and built a feat for his residence in this parish, about a quarter of a mile from the church, which he named, from himself, Town-place, soon after which he died, leaving his possessions to his three daughters and coheirs, of whom Eleanor was married to Richard Lewknor, of Challock; Bennet to William Watton, of Addington, and Elizabeth to William Sondes, of this parish and of Lingfield, in Surry, in which county his ancestors had been seated as early as the reign of Henry III. at Darking, where their seat was named, from them, Sondes-place. (fn. 3) Upon the division of their inheritance, the manor of Throwley was allotted to William Sondes, and Town-place, with the lands belonging to it in Throwley, to Richard Lewknor, who sold it to Edward Evering, the eldest son of Nicholas, third son of John Evering, of Evering, in Alkham, and his daughter and heir Mary marrying in 1565, with John Upton, of Faversham, entitled him to this estate, which he very soon afterwards alienated to Shilling, from whom it as quickly afterwards passed by sale to Anthony Sondes, esq. of this parish, whose ancestor William Sondes, on the division of the inheritance of the daughters and coheirs of Thomas at Town as before mentioned, had become possessed of the manor of Throwley, and the antient mansion of it, in which he afterwards resided, and dying in 1474, anno 15 Edward IV. was buried in the north chapel of this church, though he ordered by his will a memorial for himself to be put up in the church of Lingfield. The family of Sondes bore for their arms, Argent, three blackmores heads, couped, between two chevronels, sable, which, with the several quarterings borne by them, are painted on their monuments in this church.
His descendant, Anthony Sondes, esq. of Throwley, in the 31st year of Henry VIII. procured his lands in this county to be disgavelled, by the act then passed, and died in 1575, having married Joane, daughter of Sir John Fineux, chief justice of the king's bench, by whom he had two sons, Thomas and Michael, and two daughters.
He was succeeded by his eldest son Sir Thomas Sondes, sheriff anno 22 Elizabeth, who founded the school in this parish. He died in 1592, leaving issue only by his second wife, one daughter Frances, married to Sir John Leveson, so that on his death without male issue, his only brother Sir Michael Sondes, of Eastry, succeeded to this manor and seat of his ancestors, in which he afterwards resided. He was sheriff in the 26th year of queen Elizabeth's reign, and died in the 16th year of king James I. having had by his first wife Mary, only daughter and heir of George Fynch, esq. of Norton, six sons and six daughters.
Sir Richard Sondes, the eldest son, resided at Throwley, where he died in the 8th year of Charles I. having had by his two wives a numerous issue, of both sons and daughters. He was succeeded in this manor and seat, with the rest of his estates, by his eldest son Sir George Sondes, who was made a knight of the Bath at the coronation of king Charles I. soon after which he began to rebuild his seat of Lees-court, in Sheldwich, and fixed his residence there, under the description of which a more particular account of him and his descendants may be seen. Not long after which this seat was entirely pulled down, and the park adjoining to it disparked. The foundations of the former still remain, and the disparked lands still retain the name of Throwley park.
Sir George Sondes was afterwards created Earl of Faversham, Viscount Sondes, of Lees court, and Baron of Throwley, whose two daughters became his coheirs; Mary was married to Lewis, lord Duras, marquis of Blanquefort, and afterwards earl of Faversham, and Katherine to Lewis Watson, esq. afterwards earl of Rockingham, who each successively, in right of their respective wives, inherited this manor and estate, which has since descended in like manner as Lees-court, in Sheldwich, to the right hon. Lewis-Thomas, lord Sondes, and he is the present possessor of this manor, with Town-place and the estate belonging to it. Acourt baron is held for this manor.
WILDERTON, alias Wolderton, called also in antient deeds Wilrinton, is a manor in this parish, which was once part of the possessions of the eminent family of Badlesmere, of which Bartholomew de Badlesmere was possessed of it in the reign of Edward II. of whom, for his services in the Scottish wars, he obtained in the 9th year of it many liberties and franchises for his different manors and estates, among which was that of free-warren in the demesne lands of this manor of Wolrington. (fn. 4) Having afterwards associated himself with the discontented barons, he was taken prisoner, and executed in the 16th year of that reign. By the inquisition taken after his death, which was not till anno 2 Edward III. at which time both the process and judgement against him was reversed, it was found that he died possessed of this manor, among others, which were then restored to his son Giles de Badlesmere, who died in the 12th year of Edward III. s. p. being then possessed of this manor. Upon which his four sisters became his comanor fell to the share of Margery, wife of William, manor fell to the share of Margery, wife of William, lord Roos, of Hamlake, who survived her husband, and died in the 37th year of Edward III. possessed of it, as did her grandson John, lord Roos, in the 9th year of Henry V. leaving no issue by Margaret his wife, who survived him, and had this manor assigned to her as part of her dower. She afterwards married Roger Wentworth, esq. whom she likewise survived, and died anno 18 Edward IV.
On the death of John, lord Roos, her first husband, s. p. the reversion of this manor, after her death, became vested in Thomas his next surviving brother and heir, whose son Thomas afterwards became a firm friend to the house of Lancaster, for which he was attainted anno 1 Edward IV. and his lands were consiscated to the crown.
On the death of Margaret, the widow of Roger Wentworth, esq. the manor of Wulrington, but whether by grant or purchase, I have not found, came into the possession of Richard Lewknor, of Challock, owner likewise of Town-place, as before-mentioned, who sold it to Edward Evering, already mentioned before, whose daughter and heir Mary marrying in 1565 with Mr. John Upton, of Faversham, entitled him to it. He joined with his brother Nicholas Upton, in 1583, in the sale of the manor-house, with all the demesne lands belonging to it, excepting one small piece called the manor-croft, and a moiety of the ma nor, which, from its situation, from that time was known by the name of NORTH-WILDERTON, to Anthony Terry, of North Wilderton, yeoman, upon whose death it came to his four sons, Arnold, William, Thomas, and George Terry, who in 1601 made a partition of their father's estates, in which this manor was allotted to Arnold Terry, and William his brother, from whom it descended to Anthony Terry, of Ospringe, who in 1689 sold it to Mr. Thomas Knowler, of Faversham, who devised it to his sister Abigail for her life, and after her death to John Knowler, gent. of Ospringe, in fee. She afterwards married John Bates, and they, together with John Knowler above-mentioned, about the year 1694, joined in the sale of it to Mr. Edward Baldock, of Aylesford, and Bennet his wife. He survived her, and by deed of gift in 1717, vested the fee of it in his son Edward Baldock, who passed it away to Mr. Thomas Greenstreet, of Norton, whose niece Elizabeth marrying with Mr. Thomas Smith, of Gillingham, entitled him to this manor, which has been since sold to John Montresor, esq. of Belmont, in this parish, the present owner of it. A court baron is held for this manor.
There was antiently a chapel at this manor of Wilrintune, as appears by a charter, dated anno 1217, lately in the treasury of St. Bertin's monastery at St. Omers, concerning the privilege of a bell to it.
BUT THE REMAINING MOIETY of the manor, with a small crost called the manor-croft, lying at the west end of Hockstet green, remained with John Upton, and thenceforward acquired the name of SOUTH, alias GREAT WILDERTON. After whose death it came to his eldest son John Upton, who died possessed of it in 1635, and was buried with his ancestors in Faversham church. They bore for their arms, Quarterly, sable, and or; in the first and fourth quarters, a cross flory, argent, each charged with a trefoil, azure. (fn. 5)
John Upton, his eldest son, inherited this manor, and at his death in 1664, by his will gave it to his daughter Anne, wife of Charles Castle, gent. who in 1688 devised it to her brother-in-law George Naylor, and George White, the former of whom becoming solely possessed of it, in 1705 devised it to his nephew Mr. John Dalton, gent. of St. Edmundsbury, for his life, and afterwards to his son Thomas Dalton, and his issue, in consequence of which it descended to Benjamin Shuckforth, of Diss, in Norfolk, who in 1741 sold it to Mr. Giles Hilton, of Lords, in Sheldwich, on whose death it descended to his three sons, John, William, and Robert Hilton, the youngest of whom, Mr. Robert Hilton, as well as by the devise of his two elder brothers, afterwards became the sole proprietor of this manor. He died in 1782, and his son Mr. John Hilton, of Sheldwich, as next in the entail, succeeded to it, and is the present possessor of it.
IN THE REIGN of king Stephen there was AN ALIEN PRIORY established in this parish, as a cell to the Benedictine abbey of St. Bertin, at St. Omers, the capital of Artois, in Flanders, William de Ipre, in 1153, having given this church, with that of Chilham, to it for that purpose; which gift was confirmed by king Stephen the same year, as it was by the several archbishops afterwards, and by the charters of Henry II. and III. The charter of this gift was till lately in the treasury of the monastery of St. Bertin, as were all the others hereafter mentioned relating to this church and priory.
There are very few formal foundations of these cells, the lands of them being usually granted to some monastery abroad, as an increase to their revenues, after which, upon some part of them they built convenient houses, for the reception of a small convent. Some of these cells were made conventual, having a certain number of monks, who were mostly foreigners, and removeable at pleasure, sent over with a prior at their head, who were little more than stewards to the superior abbey, to which they returned the revenues of their possessions annually; others were permitted to chuse their own prior, and these were entire societies within themselves, and received their revenues for their own use and benefit, paying perhaps only a yearly pension as an acknowledgement of their subjection, or what was at first the surplusage to the foreign house.
The cell at Throwley was of the former sort, for which reason, during the wars between England and France, as their revenues went to support the king's enemies, these kind of houses were generally seized on by the king, and restored again upon the return of a peace. (fn. 6)
In the 25th year of king Edward I. Peter, prior of Triwle, as it was spelt in the record, made fine to the king at Westminster, and had a privy seal for his protection, by which he had the custody of his house and possessions committed to his care, to retain them during the king's pleasure, answering to his exchequer for the profits of them, according to the directions of him and his council.
The scite of this priory was that of the parsonage of the church of Throwley, which, with that of Chilham, seems to have been all their possessions in this kingdom. These were valued in the 8th year of king Richard II. anno 1384, each at forty pounds annually, and their temporalities at 20s. 6d. at which time the parsonage of Throwley was become appropriated to this cell, and a vicarage was endowed in it. In which situation this priory remained till the general suppression of the alien priories throughout England, in the 2d year of Henry V. anno 1414, which was enacted in the parliament then held at Leicester, and all their houses, revenues, &c. were given to the king and his heirs for ever. (fn. 7)
This priory, with its possessions, seems to have remained in the hands of the crown till Henry VI. in his 22d year, settled them on the monastery of Sion, in Middlesex, founded by his father Henry V. with which they continued till the general suppression of religious houses, this being one of those greater monasteries dissolved by the act of the 31st year of king Henry VIII. How this priory was disposed of afterwards by the crown, may be further seen hereafter, under the description of the parsonage of the church of Throwley.
THERE IS A FREE SCHOOL in this parish, the house of which is situated adjoining to the church-yard, which was founded by Sir Thomas Sondes, who died in 1592, who by his will devised a house and six poundes per annum to the master of it, to dwell in, and as a recompence for his pains; but having charged his executors and not his heirs to the fulfilling of this bequest, and charged the payment of the above sum, among other charitable legacies, on several leasehold estates, the terms of which expired in his nephew Sir Richard Sondes's time, and the house having tumbled down for want of repairs, Sir George Sondes, son of Sir Richard above-mentioned, thought it unreasonable, as he had none of the estates, that he should be bound to maintain the school; however, he voluntarily paid the master his salary, and gave him a house to live in, both which have been continued by the possessors of Throwley manor to this time, as far as I can learn, as of their own free gift.
The present right hon. lord Sondes appoints the schoolmaster as such during pleasure, and pays him a salary of twelve pounds per annum, besides which, he allots him an house and garden, worth about six pounds per annum, which his lordship repairs from time to time, and for which no parochial or church-dues are paid. There are at present fourteen boys taught reading, writing, and arithmetic, gratis, in this school, which though taken mostly from the parishes of Throwley, Badlesmere, and Leveland, are not confined to those parishes.
CATHERINE, LADY SONDES, gave by will the sum of 40s. a year, to be received yearly on St. Barnabas's day, towards the relief of the poor, payable from a farm in it, called Bell-horn, now belonging to lord Sondes, and now of that annual produce.
THERE WERE three alms-houses in this parish, the gift of one of the Sondes family; one of them was some time since burnt down, and has not been rebuilt, but lord Sondes allows the person nominated to it the value of it in money yearly.
The church, which is dedicated to St. Michael, consists of three isles and three chancels. The steeple is a square tower, and stands in the centre of the south side of it, in which there is a peal of six bells, given in 1781, at the expence of Mr. Montresor, of Belmont. In the south isle is a memorial for Francis Hosier Hart, gent. obt. 1761, leaving three daughters, Mary, Elizabeth, and Diana Hosier. In the middle isle is a small monument for Stephen Bunce, esq. of this parish, one of the Antients of New-Inn, who died there in 1634, and was buried in St. Clement's church, London. In the middle chancel there are two stalls of wood, which are not fixed, and in the north isle three more of the like sort, joined together, with a desk before them, which seem to have been removed from the chancel, and were both intended for the use of the religious of the priory here. In the middle of this chancel is a memorial for Dr. Thomas Horsemonden, patron and rector of Purleigh, in Essex, prebendary of Lincoln, &c. who died anno 1632. In the north and south chancel are several monuments for the family of Sondes, with their essigies, arms and quarterings; one of them in the latter, a plain altar tomb of black marble for Sir George Sondes, earl of Faversham, his lady and descendants; many more of this family, as appears by the parish register, are buried in the vault underneath, but the family of Watson burying at Rockingham, this vault has not been opened for several years. The north and south chancels above-mentioned belonged, one to the possessors of Throwley manor, the other to those of Townplace, but they both belong now to lord Sondes.
In the church yard, at the west end of the north isle, there is a circular door-case of stone, having several bordures of Saxon ornaments carved round it. In the church-yard is an altar tomb for William Woodward, gent. of Wilgate-green, obt. 1681, and Anne his wife.
It appears by the will of William Sondes, esq. anno 1474, that this church had then constantly burning in it lights, dedicated to St. Michael, the Holy Trinity, the Holy Cross, St. Mary, St. Thomas, St. Christopher, St. George, St. Katherine, St. Margaret, St. Mary Magdalen, and St. Nicholas.
An account of the antient patronage of the church of Throwley has already been given, as first belonging to the alien priory here, and then to the monastery of Sion, to the time of the dissolution of the latter in the 31st year of Henry VIII. the year after which, the king granted the rectory, with the advowson of the vicarage of the church of Throwley, to the prebendary of Rugmer, in the cathedral church of St. Paul, London, in exchange for lands belonging to that prebend, to be inclosed within the king's park of Marybone, in pursuance of an act then passed. Since which this parsonage and advowson have continued part of the abovementioned prebend. The former is leased out by the present prebendary to the right hon. lord Sondes, but the advowson of the vicarage he retains in his own hands, and is the present patron of it.
There was a rent of 4l. 18s. 4d. reserved from the parsonage by king Henry VIII. nomine decimœ, which was granted by queen Elizabeth, in her third year, to archbishop Parker, among other premises, in exchange for several manors, lands, &c. belonging to that see, which rent still continues part of the revenue of the archbishopric.
A vicarage was endowed here in 1367, anno 42 king Edward III. by archbishop Langham, at which time the chapel of Wylrington belonged to it. (fn. 8)
Church of Throwley.
|Or by whom presented.|
|Michael Sondes, esq.||William Copell, S. T. B. Oct. 9, 1597, obt. 1605. (fn. 9)|
|Sir Michael Sondes.||William Pulley, A. M. July 29, 1605. (fn. 10)|
|William Annand, induct. July 15, 1649. (fn. 11)|
|Matthew Smallwood, S. T. P. hac vice.||George Robertson, A.M. Nov. 6, 1662, obt. 1688. (fn. 9)|
|The Crown, hac vice.||Richard Sale, clerk, Sept. 11, 1688.|
|Benjamin Hollingworth, resigned 1696. (fn. 12)|
|Jonathan Bernard, Oct. 28, 1701, obt. Feb. 1, 1715.|
|James Barker, preb. of Rugmer.||John Willis, LL. B. Aug. 27, 1715, obt. Feb. 1, 1757. (fn. 13)|
|Thomas Archer, preb. of the same.||Johnson Lawson, A. B. March 5, 1757, obt. Nov. 25, 1778. (fn. 14)|
|John Hotham, D. D. preb. of the same.||Walter Williams, A. M. March 12, 1779, the present vicar. (fn. 15)|