The History and Topographical Survey of the County of Kent: Volume 7. Originally published by W Bristow, Canterbury, 1798.
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IS the next parish westward from that of Wye. It is frequently spelt Bocton, and is written in Domesday, Boltune, and has the addition of Aluph to it from one of its antient owners, Alulphus de Bocton, as well as to distinguish it from the other parishes of the same name in this county, and in a will, proved anno 1416, in the Prerogative-office, Canterbury, I find it mentioned by the name of the parish of Boughton Aluph, otherwise called Boughton in the Bushe. There are four boroughs in it, Goatlands, Wilmington, Dane, and Hebbinge.
THE PARISH lies about twelve miles distant both from Canterbury and Faversham, and about four from Ashford, the high road from Canterbury to the latter goes along the foot of the hills, near the eastern boundary of the parish, where the soil is chalky; close on the east side of the road is Buckwell-house, great part of which has been some time since pulled down, but there is sufficient remaining, with the offices and walls about it, to shew it was once a seat of some note, and at no great distance on the hill, high above the road, is the church and court-lodge. Above this, still further westward, is much open, rough ground, called the Warren, on a chalky soil, reaching beyond the high Faversham road, the new inclosure in Eastwell park adjoining to it, being within this parish; within the northern boundary of it there is a parcel of woodland, about one hundred acres lying in Kingswood, just above Socombe down; it was formerly part of Barton manor, and was sold off from it by Mr. Breton a few years before he sold that manor to Sir Robert Furnese, bart, by whose daughter Catherine it went in marriage to the earl of Guildford, whose grandson George-Augustus, earl of Guildford, is now possessed of it. By the pales of Eastwell park, at a small distance from the mansion of it, the last mentioned road descends below the hill to low ground, and mostly a gravelly soil; on it is the village, situated round a green, called Boughton lees, the west side only of which is in this parish. At the southern boundary of the parish, on the Ashford road, is the borough and hamlet of Wilmington, the antient mansion of which stood close to the road, it has been long since pulled down. It stood within a moat, which is still very entire, its area containing half an acre of ground; many old foundations have been dug up round about it within memory.
IN THE TIME of the Saxons this place was in the possession of earl Godwin, who was succeeded in it by his eldest son earl Harold, afterwards king of England, on whose death in the fatal battle of Hastings, William the Conqueror having obtained the crown, seized on all the late king's estates, and gave this of Boughton to Eustance, earl of Bologne, who had followed him over hither, as a reward for his services; and he possessed it in the 15th year of that reign, at the time the survey of Domesday was taken, in which it is thus entered, under the title of Terra Comitis Eustachii, i. e. the land of earl Eustace.
In the lath of Wivarlet, in Wihundred, the earl holds Boltune. Earl Goduin held it, and it was taxed at seven sulings, then and now. The arable land is thirty-three carucartes. In demesne there are three, and sixty-seven villeins, with five borders having thirty carucates. There is a church, and seventeen servants, and two mills of seven shillings and two-pence, and twenty-six acres of meadow. Wood for the pannage of two hundred hogs. In the time of king Edward the Confessor it was worth twenty pounds, and afterwards thirty pounds, now forty pounds.
Of the earl of Bologne this manor was held by a family who assumed their name from it. Alulphus de Boughton held it in the reign of king John, as appears by the Testa de Nevil, of the honor of Bologne. Stephen de Bocton died possessed of this manor in the 14th year of Edward I. holding it in capite by knight's service; together with its member, Hethenden, in Kent, and Orset, in Essex, both escheats of that honor. Soon after which it passed into the family of Burghersh, and Robert de Burghersh, constable of Dover castle, died possessed of this manor of Bocton Olaus in the 34th year of that reign, whose son Stephen, in the 1st year of Edward II obtained a charter of free-warren in all his demesne lands within it. To him succeeded Bartholomew, lord Bughersh, constable of Dover Castle, lord warden, and chamberlain of the king's household. In the 12th, and in the 16th years of Edward III. he had the charter of free-warren renewed for all his lands. (fn. 1) His son Bartholomew, lord Burghersh, about the 43d year of king Edward III. passed away this manor by sale, with much other land in this county and in Warwickshire, to Sir Walter de Paveley, K.G. who spelt his name both Paveley and Pavalli, and bore for his arms, Azure, a cross story, or, as they are now on the roof of Canterbury cloisters. After the death of whose grandson Walter, in the 4th year of king Richard II. it was found by inquisition, that this manor, with the advowson of the church of Bocton Aluph, descended by the entail of it to Thomas de Aldon, as his next heir, who became accordingly possessed of it, and afterwards alienated it to Sir Thomas Trivet, whose widow Elizabeth died possessed of it in the 12th year of king Henry VI. and was succeeded by Elizabeth, then wife of Edward Nevill, lord Bergavenny, fourth son of Ralph, earl of Westmoreland; as her next heir, and the entitled her husband above-mentioned to the possession of it. After her death he remarried Catherine, daughter of Sir Robert Howard, and died anno 19 Edward IV. being then possessed as tenant by the courtesy of England, of this manor among others of the inheritance of Elizabeth his first wife. His eldest son Sir George Nevill, lord Bergavenny; seems to have sold this manor to Sir Thomas Kempe, of Ollantigh, whose youngest son Thomas, bishop of London, died possessed of it in the 4th year of king Henry VII. leaving his nephew Sir Thomas Kempe his next heir, whose descendant Sir Thomas Kempe, of Ollantigh, about the latter and of queen Elizabeth's reign, alienated it to Finch, of Eastwell, in whose successors, earls of Winchelsea, it descended down to Daniel, earl of Winchelsea and Nottingham, who, by will in 1769, devised this manor to George Finch Hatton, esq. of Eastwell, the present owner of it.
SEATON is a small manor in this parish, which was held by knight's service in grand sergeantry, to provide one man, called a vautrer, to lead three greyhounds when the king should go into Gascony, until he had worn out a pair of shoes of the price of four-pence, bought at the king's cost; (fn. 2) by which service John de Criol, younger son of Bertram, held it at his death in the 48th year of king Henry III. whose grand-daughter Joane becoming heir to her brother's inheritance, who died s. p. she carried this manor in marriage to Sir Richard de Rokesle, who was found to hold it by the like service, in the 11th year of king Edward II. His eldest daughter and coheir Agnes married Thomas de Poynings, and entitled him to the possession of it. In whose descendants it continued till Alianore, daughter of Richard de Poynings, marrying Henry, lord Percy, eldest son of Henry, earl of Northamberland, he, in her right, became entitled to this manor among her other great inheritance in this county and elsewhere; and in his descendants this manor continued down to Henry, VIII. earl of Northamberland, (fn. 3) who, in the 23d year of Henry VIII. conveyed it to feoffees, who soon afterwards passed it away by sale to Sir Christopher Hales, afterwards knighted, and the king's attorney-general, whose lands were disgavelled by the act of the 31st year of Henry VIII. He died possessed of it in the 33d year of that reign, holding it of the king, as of his castle of Dover, by knight's service. He left three daughters his coheirs, who joined in the sale of it to Sir Thomas Moyle, of Eastwell, and chancellor of the king's court of augmentation, whose daughter and coheir Catherine, carried it in marriage to Sir Thomas Finch, of Eastwell, (fn. 4) in whose descendants, earls of Winchelsea, this manor continued down to Daniel, earl of Winchelsea and Nottingham, who dying in 1769, without male issue, gave it, together with his other estates in this county, to his nephew George Finch Hatton, esq. now of Eastwell, the present proprietor of it.
BARTON is a manor here, the mansion of which stood on the west side of the Ashford road, in the borough of Socombe, almost opposite to Buckwell, but it has been pulled down some years, and there is now only a barn on the scite of it. It was once part of the possessions of the family of Leyborne, of Leyborne, one of whom, Roger de Leyborne, died possessed of it in the 56th year of king Henry III. and in this name it continued till Juliana de Leyborne, daughter of Thomas, became the sole heir of their possessions, from the greatness of which, she was usually stiled the Infanta of Kent, who, though she had three husbands, all of whom she survived, yet she died s. p. in the 41st year of king Edward III. (fn. 5) Upon which this manor, among the rest of her estates, escheated to the crown, there being no one found who could make claim to her estates, by direct or even by collateral alliance. After which this manor continued in the crown, till king Richard II. vested it in feoffees in trust, towards the endowment of St. Stephen's chapel, at Westminister, which he had in his 22d year completed and made collegiate, and had the year before granted to the dean and canons of this manor, among others, in mortmain. In which situation it continued till the 1st year of king Edward VI. when this college was, with all its possessions, surrendered into the king's hands, who soon afterwards granted this manor to Sir Thomas Moyle, of Eastwell, and he parted with it to his brother Walter Moyle, esq. who afterwards resided at Buckwell, in this parish; and in his descendants, resident at Buckwell, this manor continued, till John Moyle, esq. of Buckwell, leaving Mary his sole daughter and heir, she carried it in marriage to Robert Breton, esq. of the Elmes, near Dover, who died possessed of it in 1708, and his son, Moyle Breton, esq. of Kennington, about the year 1730, sold this manor to Thomas May, afterwards Knight, esq. of Godmersham, whose son Tho. Knight, esq. of Godmersham, dying in 1794, s.p. gave it by will to his widow Mrs. Catherine Knight, but she has since resigned it to Edward Austen, esq. of Godmersham park, who is the present owner of it.
BUCKWELL, which was once accounted a manor, is situated at a small distance from Barton last-mentioned, though on the opposite side of the road. It was, in the reign of the Conqueror, part of those estates which were given to William de Arsick, for his assistance in the desence of Dover castle, and made up, with them, the barony of Arsick, being held of it, as one knight's fee, by barony, as of the castle of Dover, to which it owed ward and service. Of him and his heirs this manor was again held by the family of Leyborne, one of whom, Roger de Leyborne, died possessed of it in the 56th year of Henry III. and was succeeded in it by William his son; but when it passed from this name, I have not found; but soon afterwards, the manor of Buckwell, and the mansion of it, seem to have been Separated, and in the possession of different owners; for the manor itself became the property of Robert de Burghersh, constable of Dover castle, and likewise lord warden, whose descendant Bartholomew, lord Burghersh, about the 43d year of king Edward III. conveyed it, with other land in this parish and elsewhere, to Sir Walter de Paveley, one of whose descendants passed it away to Sir Robert Belknap, chief justice of the common pleas, who in the 11th year of that reign was attainted, and banished to Ireland, and though he was afterwards permitted to return in the 20th year of it, yet his attainder still continued, and his lands remained forfeited as before, (fn. 6) and this manor remained in the crown till that king vested it in feoffees in trust, towards the endowment of St. Stephen's chapel, in Westminster, in the possession of the dean and canons, of which it remained till the suppression of that college in the 1st year of king Edward VI. when it came into the hands of the crown, whence it was granted to John Moyle, whose ancestors, resident at the mansion of Buckwell, had likewise been leffees of this manor under the deans and canons for some generations.
Mention has been made above, that the mansion of Buckwell had, before the reign of king Edward I. been separated from the manor itself; accordingly I find, that in the 8th year of king Edward III. William de la Hay died possessed of it, and that soon afterwards it became the property of a family who assumed their name from it, being usually called Bekewell. Henry de Bekewell appears by the escheat-rolls to have died possessed of it in the 10th year of that reign, as did his descendant, of the same name, in the 17th year of king Richard II. After this family was extinct here, this seat became the property of Wode, and remained so till the 34th year of Henry VI. and then Robert Wode passed it away by sale to Walter Moyle, ancestor of John Moyle, esq. of this place, who had the grant of the manor of Buckwell from king Edward VI. as be fore-mentioned. The Moyles were descended from Thomas Moyle, of Bodmin, in Cornwall, whose grandson Sir Walter, third son of Henry, was of Eastwell, and purchaser of this estate, as before-mentioned. His eldest son John had several sons, of whom John was father of Ralph Moyle, who died at Eastwell in 1582. Walter was of Buckwell, and ancestor of the Moyles of this place; and Thomas, who was knighted, and was of Eastwell, left two daughters his coheirs, married to Finch and Kempe. They bore for their arms, Gules, a mule passant, within a bordure, argent. There are many memorials of them in both the chancels of this church. (fn. 7) In the descendants of John Moyle, resident at Buckwell, this manor and seat continued till Mary, sole daughter and heir of John Moyle, esq. carried both of them in marriage to Robert Breton, esq. of the Elmes, near Dover, whose son Moyle Breton, esq. of Kennington, about the year 1730, being enabled so to do by an act passed for this purpose, sold them, with other adjoining estates, to Thomas May, afterwards Knight, esq. of Godmersham, and his only son and heir Thomas Knight, esq. of that place, on his death, s. p. in 1794, gave them by will to his widow, Mrs. Catherine Knight, who likewise resigned them to Edward Austen, esq. of Godmersham, the present owner of them.
Wilmington, called likewise antiently Wilmingdon, is a manor which lies at the southern part of this parish, on the Ashford road likewise. It gives name to the borough in which it stands, and to the hamlet of houses which stand round about it. Robert de Wilmington held this manor in the reign of Henry III. in grand sergeantry, of the honor of Bolegne, by the service of being the earl's cook, it being then valued at two marcs. His descendant Bertram de Wilmington, died possessed of it in the 12th year of Edward II. when it was found by inquisition, that he held it of the king in capite, by the service of finding for the king one pot-hook for his meat, whenever he should come within the manor of Boughton Aluph. (fn. 8) His descendant, of the same name, died possessed of it in the 6th year of king Henry V. After which it came into the possession of John Mowbray, duke of Norfolk, who was possessed of it in the 2d year of Edward IV. On his death the great inheritance of the Mowbrays came to the descendants of his two sisters and coheirs, and in the division of it John, lord Howard, in right of his mother Margaret, the eldest of them, became entitled to this manor. He was one of the most illustrious noblemen of his time, and having continued faithful to the house of York, he remained no less stedfast to the interest of king Richard III. who created him duke of Norsolk, earl marshal and lord admiral of England. But he did not enjoy these honors long; for he was next year slain in the battle of Bosworth, fighting on the king's behalf, and in the 1st year of Henry VII. he was attainted in parliament, and this manor, among his other possessions, became confiscated to the crown; (fn. 9) whence it was afterwards granted to Moyle, in which name it continued till the beginning of Edward VI.'s reign, when by Catherine, daughter and coheir of Sir Thomas Moyle, of Eastwell, it went in marriage to Sir Thomas Finch, of that parish, who died in 1563, and she remarrying with Nicholas St. Leger, esq. of Beamstone, in Westwell, entitled him to it for her life. She died in 1586, on which it came to her son Sir Moyle Finch, bart. in whose descendants, earl of Winchelsea, it descended down to Daniel, earl of Winchelsea and Nottingham, who at his death in 1769, devised it to his nephew George Finch Hatton, esq. now of Eastwell, the present owner of it.
But Part Of The Demesne Lands of this manor were sold off, about the year 1713, to the Rev. Hilkiah Bedford, publisher of the bereditary Right of the Crown of England asserted, whose eldest son William Bedford M.D. whose daughter Elizabeth marrying Mr. Claxton, of Shirley, in Surry, has entitled him to the possession of it.
ANOTHER PART of this estate, now called Little Wilmington, in the reign of king Henry VI. was in the possession of Richard Sandys, who alienated it to John Barough, who resided at it, and died possessed of it in the 1st year of king Edward IV. One of his descendants, Richard Barrowe, resided here in the reigns of king Elizabeth and James I. and died in the 6th year of the latter, leaving three sons, Robert, Richard, and William, to which last he devised his house and lands in Borden, and from him descended the Barrows of that parish. To Robert Barrow, his eldest son, he devised this estate of Little Wilmington, and in his descendants it continued, till it was at length sold to Knott, and from that name again to Dr. William Egerton, prebendary of Canterbury, who died possessed of it in 1728, leaving two daughters his coheirs, and his widow surviving, upon whose death it came to Jemima, widow of Edward Bridges, esq. of Wotton, one of the above-mentioned coheirs, and William Hammond, esq. of St. Albans, the eldest son of William Hammond, esq. of that place, by Charlotte the other coheir; and upon a division made, this estate was allotted to Mrs. Bridges above-mentioned, now of Canterbury, and she is the present possessor of it.
MARDOL MANOR is the last place to be mentioned in this parish, lying on the south side of it. This manor was antiently the patrimony of the Corbies in which it continued till Robert Corbie, in the reign of king Richard II. leaving an only daughter and heir Joane, she carried it, among the rest of her inheritance, to Sir Nicholas Wotton, whose descendant Thomas Wotton, esq. in the reign of queen Elizabeth, passed it away by sale to Sprott, from which name, in the reign of king Charles I. it was alienated to Thomas Finch, earl of Winchelsea, in whose descendants it continued down to Daniel, earl of Winchelsea and Nottingham, who in 1769, gave it by will, with the rest of his estates in this county, to his nephew George Finch Hatton, esq. now the present owner of it.
MR. JOHN BOUGHTON, vicar, left to this parish by will, in 1642, 30s. per annum to such poor as had great charge of children, aged and incapable to work, to be distributed on the Thursday in Whitsun-week; and to the churchwardens and overseers, 10s. per annum, for a sermon to be preached on that day, to be paid out of house and land on Boughton lees.
MR. WILLIAM CROW left by will in 1770, to this parish, the sum of 90l. to be put into the public funds, the amount of the profits of it to be yearly distributed by the owners of Eastwell-place, among such honest and well disposed poor aged men and women, especially widows, as they should consider real objects of charity; but not to persons receiving alms, in relief of the parish.
The church, which is dedicated to All Saints, is large and handsome, built of slint, with ashlar stone to the doors, windows, and quoins. It consists of three isles and two chancels. The steeple is a large low tower, standing on four pillars in the middle of it. There are five bells in it, and at the south-east corner, adjoining to the tower, is a large square addition, in which is a stone stair-case. Both the chancels did belong to the Buckwell estate; but the family of Breton having buried in both since their sale of it, without Mr. Knight's permission, he refused to repair them, and they are now repaired by Mr. Breton. In the great chancel, within the rails, is a monument for Thomas Austen, esq. obt. 1637. In this and the north chancel are many gravestones of the Moiles and Bretons. In the north chancel is a handsome monument of marble, for Amy, wife of Josias Clerk, gent. of Essex, daughter of John Moyle, esq. of Buckwell, obt. 1631, having the effigies of her lying at full length, and of her three children kneeling at her head and feet, in full proportion, under a canopy. In the middle isle is a memorial for John Mascall, esq. obt. 1769; arms, Two bars, over all, three escutcheons ermine, impaling a saltier, and on it a crescent, for difference; and there are memorials for others likewise of the same family.
The church of Boughton Aluph, as has been already mentioned before, was antiently an appendage to the manor, and continued so in the 4th year of Richard II. when Sir Walter Pavely died possessed of the same, and it was found that Sir Thomas de Aldon was his next heir. How long afterwards it continued in his heirs I have not found; but in the reign of Henry VI. the advowson of this rectory was become the property of cardinal John Kempe, archbishop of York, who settled it on his new-founded college of Wye, and in the 29th year of that reign the master and chaplains of it had the king's licence to receive this advowson from the cardinal, and to appropriate the rectory of it to themselves; (fn. 10) and a vicarage was endowed here. In which situation it remained till the suppression of the college, in the 36th year of Henry VIII. when it was surrendered into the king's hands, who that year granted this church, with the presentation of the vicarage of it, among other premises, to Walter Bucler, esq. to hold in capite, with certain provisos for the maintenance of the curates and schoolmaster of Wye; which grant, on his non-performance of these conditions, became forfeited, and king Charles I. in his 2d and 5th years, granted the same premises, with the proviso for the payment of certain stipends to the before-mentioned curate and schoolmaster, to Robert Maxwell, from whose heirs this rectory and advowson was afterwards sold to Moyle, of Buckwell, in which name it continued till Mary, daughter and sole heir of John Moyle, esq. of Buckwell, carried them in marriage to Robert Breton, esq. of the Elmes, near Dover, who died possessed of them in 1708, and his great grandson the Rev. Moyle Breton, of Kennington, is the present owner of the parsonage appropriate of Boughton, with the advowson of the vicarage of this church, who pays twenty pounds per annum from it towards the stipends of the curate and schoolmaster of Wye, as stipulated in Robert Maxwell's patent, the several premises granted in it being now in different hands as has been already more fully mentioned before.
In 1578 here were communicants one hundred and fifty-four; in 1640, one hundred and seventy-seven. It is now worth about eighty pounds per annum. There are twenty three acres of glebe belonging to it.
There was a composition in 1305 entered into between the rector of Westwell and Stephen de Wilmington, rector of this church, concerning the tithes of the hamlets of Shotingdon, Chilberton, and Wike. (fn. 11)
Church of Boughton Aluph.
|Or by whom presented.|
|The Queen.||Thomas Sprott, inducted April 28, 1567, obt. 1611.|
|The King.||Thomas Jackson, S. T. B. Jan. 9, 1611.|
|John Boughton, A. B. July 5, 1614, obt. 1642.|
|Sir William Damsell, and others.||Thomas Hull, A. M. Jan. 17, 1642.|
|The King.||Thomas Clarke, A. M. Feb. 17, 1642, resigned 1644.|
|Richard Walker, August 6, 1644.|
|Henry Nicholls, in 1671 and 1696.|
|Mary Breton, of Hougham.||John Wynne, A.B. Oct. 13, 1708, obt. Oct. 20, 1728. (fn. 12)|
|Moyle Breton, esq.||Thomas Breton, LL. B. March 11, 1729, obt. June 2, 1731.|
|Richard Bate, Sept. 24, 1731, obt. March, 1749. (fn. 13)|
|Robert Pemberton, 1749, resigned 1752.|
|Robert Breton, LL.B. July 14, 1752, the present vicar. (fn. 14)|