An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 1. Originally published by W Miller, London, 1805.
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The Church stands against the road leading from Diss to Winfarthing, and hath a square tower and four bells; the nave is thatched, the chancel and north porch are tiled. It is dedicated to all the Saints, as was the gild that belonged to it.
1272. Eudo, parson of Shelfhangre, in the time of John de Ho, Lord. (fn. 1)
1285. Peter de Ho, rector. (fn. 2)
Henry, rector of Shelfhanger. (fn. 2)
1347, 25 December, Bogo de Knovill. (fn. 3) Ditto.
1375, 21 March, Sir John de Verdoun, Knt. and Adam Bosvile, the present patrons, considering the small revenues of each mediety, consolidated them for ever, at the death of Gilbert Colman, in John Basset, then rector of Bosvile's mediety; the presentation henceforward to be alternate. (fn. 4)
1627, William Bagley. (fn. 5) Thomas Earl of Arundell.
|King's Books. (fn. 6)||Tenths.||Synodals.||Procur. Archd.||Acres Glebe.|
On the font I saw the arms of Bosville, (a I suppose,) carved in stone, with A on one side, and B on the other, being the initial letters of the name of Adam Bosville, who was patron in 1362, about which time this might be set up; and in a south chancel window I find the same arms quartered by Noon, viz.
Here is a town-house for two dwellers, a freehold close of 3 acres, let at about 50s. a year, half the profits of which are given to the poor, and the other half to be applied to what uses the church-wardens please. The rector hath also a close of 3 acres, given to find bell-ropes, called Bell-rope Close.
In 1738, Mrs. Sarah Frankland gave 100l. with which there was freehold land purchased in the parish, the rent of which is to find 2s. worth of bread to be distributed to the poor every Sunday, by the rector and church-wardens.
The Commons are inconsiderable, except their intercommonage with Brisingham on Boyland Green; (see p. 72;) and a large tract of meadows which are common from Lammas to March, and are called the Lammas Meadows.
This parish is in the archdeaconry of Norfolk, and deanery of Redenhall. In 1603, it had 142 communicants, hath now near 40 dwellinghouses, and contains about 200 inhabitants. It paid to the old tenth 27s. was taxed to the association rates at 980l. and now at 763l. 10s. [1736.]
Here was a chapel dedicated to St. Andrew the Apostle, but when or by whom founded I cannot certainly learn; but most probable, by some of the Veres, lords of Winfarthing: it stood on the great road leading from Shelfhanger to Winfarthing, and by its not being mentioned in the Institution Books, appears to have been a free chapel; it was standing in 1518, for then Matthew Halyett of Winfarthing gave a bell to the chapel of St. Andrew in Shelfhanger. It was supported by lands given by the founder, all which at the Dissolution came to the Crown, and so remained till the 12th of Elizabeth, and then she gave them to Nicholas Mynne, Esq. and John Hall, Gent. and their heirs; and in 1587, they were held by the Cleres, of the manor of East Greenwich, by fealty only. They are said to lie in Deep-Meadow, and in other places in Shelf hanger and Winfarthing.
The Prior of Eye had a portion of tithes given them by Hugh de Aviliers, out of his demean lands here, which were confirmed to the rector by that house, for a pension of 5s. 9d. a year, (fn. 7) which, at the Dissolution, went to the Crown, and was granted for 21 years, by Queen Elizabeth, to George Petre. The register of this priory, called Danoun, (fn. 8) which now  belongs to Mr. Thomas Martin of Palgrave, tells us the lands' names from which this portion issued, viz. Whytlown's, Bullokk's Close, Breche-Lond, and Chappell-Lond, of which the prior to have two tithe sheaves, and the rector one.
The monks of Thetford had also a portion of tithes here, viz. two garbs out of three of all the demean lands of Winfarthing tenement, being 50 acres, which they granted to the rector for 18d. a year pension.
The inhabitants of North Lopham hold a messuage, called Elwines, and 13 acres of land, and one acre in South Meadow, and other lands, formerly demeans of Shelfhanger, Visedelieu manor; (fn. 9) all which, in 1412, were manumised by Edmund Noon, Knt. lord of that manor, and granted to Richard Bosse, and his heirs, to be held by the rent of a red rose yearly. This Richard infeoffed William Ty, parson of Shelf hanger, and others, to hold it for ever to the use of the parish of North Lopham, to repair their parish church. And in 1454 the said William Ty infeoffed Henry Noon, Edmund Bokenham, Esqrs. John Halle, parson of Garboldisham, and others to the same uses. This land is still enjoyed by that parish. [1736.]
The town was in divers parts at the survey; Colo, a freeman of Nasgre Stalre, in King Edward's time, had one manor, which, in the Conqueror's time, Hervicus or Hervy held, and Modephefe, a freewoman of Algar's, had another, both being held of Alan Earl of Richmond. The town was a league long, and half a league broad, and paid 9d. to the Geld or tax. (fn. 10)
And from this time they continued separate, till they united in the Norfolk family; the one was afterwards called Hoe's, and the other Vicedelieu's, to each of which a moiety of the advowson was appendant.
Peter, son of the said Roger, was called Peter de Shelfangell, and sometimes de Ho. Roger de Ho gave lands here to Sibton abbey, and added to the manor by purchasing of Robert de Morley, and Roger de Gissing, Knts. lords of Reydon, much land in that town, which occasioned this manor to extend thither. He lived about 1196, and
In 1218, Guido or Eudo de Ho, alias de Shelfangre, was lord, who the same year had a grant of free-warren to his manor; (fn. 11) he is sometimes in evidences called Eudo Fitz-Osbert, from his father; he granted his moiety of the advowson, in 1227, to
In 1275 he was Sheriff of Norfolk and Suffolk, and paid the third penny of the county to the Earl of Norfolk. He held much land here of Bury abbey, and many rents and services, to the value of 112 acres. To this Sir John succeeded
Eudo in 1276, in whose time it was first called Hoe's manor; he claimed streys and had it allowed in 1220. Walter de Shelfangre, one of this family, was Sheriff of Norfolk and Suffolk, and was fined for extortion; but whether he was ever lord or no I cannot say.
John de Ho; he granted a messuage, lands, and commonage in Shelfhanger, to Walter of Shelfhanger, uncle to John de Shotbroke, who became Walter's heir in 1286, in which year this John de Ho is said to hold it of the honour of Richmond, and had strey allowed him. In 1302 it belonged to another
Roger de Ho, who in 1307, upon marrying Agnes, (sirnamed Norwich probably, for William de Norwico, clerk, was deforciant in the fine,) settled it on them and their heirs. How it continued till 1345 I know not certainly, though it seems to be in a family sirnamed
De la Pole of Brisingham; (fn. 12) for in 1331, this advowson was settled by Henry de la Pole of Brisingham, and Margaret his wife, on themselves and their heirs, which Margaret might be heiress to Roger and Agnes de Ho; and it is probable that De la Pole's daughter might marry Boseville: however, thus far I am certain, that in this year
The Manor of Vice de Lou,
Which was the part held by Modephefe, had its name from the lords thereof; Humfridus Vise de Lou, or Wolf's Face, (for such is the signification of the name,) lived in the time of the Conqueror, and held lands in Berkshire, as Domesday informs us, whose descendant,
William de Vise de Lou married Rose, sister and heir of Elizabeth de Shotisbroke. He it was that procured a grant of free-warren to this manor, which he settled, with the moiety of the advowson, which had always gone with it, on
Isabell, married to Sir John Verdon, Knt. and Margaret to Thomas Mossells, Esq. This ancient family was some time seated at Shotley, in Samford hundred in Suffolk, and continued above seven descents, possessed of a large revenue in Shotley, Snape, &c. They bare arg. three wolves heads erased gul. from which bearing they might have their name.
The moiety of the advowson went with Verdon's part, (fn. 13) (for John de Verdon, Knt. lord of Briclesworth, presented here often,) and descended with the manor to
Henry Noon, Esq. his son and heir, who, in 1417, renewed the grant for his free-warren and park. This Henry much increased his estate, by his valiant exploits, being a brave soldier, and an experienced officer: he constantly attended Henry V. in the French wars, where he behaved so gallantly, that the King gave him the castle, lands, and lordship of Tonde in Normandy, (fn. 14) which was late the Earl of Mortaigne's, being 2000 scutes a year. He died in 1465, leaving this manor to
Henry enjoyed it till his death in 1487, as appears by the probate of his will, who, according to his desire, was buried under a large grave-stone in this chancel, the inscription of which is now torn off, but his arms, impaling a chevron in a bordure between three eagles legs erased, lately remained. His wife Eleanor, after his decease, married to William Lancaster of Brisingham, Esq. and after that to Robert Wyngfield, with whose consent she made her will, dated the 4th of November, 1500, in which she ordered to be buried in this chancel by her first husband, and to have on her stone the arms of Wyngfield siding Lancaster.
Henry Noon, son and heir, succeeded; who, upon marriage in 1510, settled the manor on Antony Wyngfield, Robert Kemp, Esq. and Robert Bonde, clerk, in trust, to his use and his heirs, by Elizabeth, daughter of Sir John Wingfield of Letheringham in Suffolk; in 1519, the said Henry, and Robert Holdich, who was lord of the other moiety, manumised a great part of the manor, among which, to Robert, son of Matthew Hallyat of Winfarthing, three enclosures, Brendaleswong, containing 60 acres, Bullock's Close 20 acres, and Brech Close 10 acres, at 19s. 10d. freerent. Whether it was this Henry, or his son Francis, that sold the manor, I cannot say, but it was purchased by the Duke of Norfolk, who kept court here in 1532.
Margaret married Edmund Stratton, Esq. and was his widow in 1479; and left it to her daughter, who married Richard Yaxley, senior, and by him had two sons, Thomas Yaxley, clerk, the eldest, who sold it to Richard Yaxley, his brother, and his heirs. This Richard, in 1526, purchased the other moiety of this moiety, of
Thomas Felton, Esq. which Thomas was son of Robert Felton, Esq. had Margery his wife, sister and heiress to Sir Thomas Sampson of Playford in Suffolk, Knt. which Robert was son of John Chapman, alias Felton, by Joan, the other daughter of Thomas Mossell, Esq. This Richard Yaxley had it settled on himself and Richard Holdich, his trustee, in 1527, and so held it to 1532, when he and Anne his wife sold it to
Thomas Duke of Norfolk, and his heirs, who having purchased the other moiety of the Noons, as also Hoe's manor, became now sole lord and patron; and it hath been ever since, and now remains in that honourable family. The present Duke being now lord and patron. [1736.]
Which belonged to the abbey of Sibton in Suffolk; this was formerly the possession of Edric, Falconer to the Confessor, and had only 15 acres demeans at that time. (fn. 15)
This Edric was ancestor to Robert Mallet, (fn. 16) lord of Eye honour, who in the Conqueror's days, or soon after, infeoffed
William, his brother, his heir, whom he commanded to perform his vow. This William was called afterwards de Cayneto, de Chethney, or Cheyney; who, according to his promise, founded the abbey of Sibton in Suffolk, in his own land, in the year 1149, endowing it with many revenues, and among them with this manor, which was then very small, but was soon after augmented by divers gifts given to that house, (fn. 17) among which, Ralph, son of Nicholas Loverd of Shelfhanger, gave them, Robert, son of Bartholomew de Dunwich, with his service; William, son of Godfrey of Westhaie, gave them 3s. rent in Reydon, of the fee of Gilbert Fitz-Ralph, for the souls of his father and mother, and Mary his wife, of whose patrimony it was; John de Verdon, lord of Brisingham, gave them the going or commonage of pasture for 200 sheep on Brisingham Great Green, and many others gave other lands, all which are particularly described in a chartulary of the priory of Cluniack monks at Thetford, fol. 23, which book is now among Mr. Le Neve's Collections. In 1361, it was let to Bosevill, at 40s. per annum. In 1336, the abbot new-built Frier's Hall, at the expense of 50l.; the demeans were then 50 acres In 1403, John Abbot of Sibton, and the Convent, (fn. 18) leased out their whole possessions here to John Lancaster, Esq. for seven years, at 3l. 1s. per annum, the demeans being excepted; it now extended into Shelfhanger, Reydon, Brisingham, and Diss in Norfolk, and Thrandeston and Yaxley in Suffolk. About 1530, Henry Noon farmed it with one acre marsh in Brisingham, and the commonage of 200 sheep there; and so it continued till the 28th Henry VIII. in which year the abbot and monks, foreseeing what was coming upon them, bargained with Thomas Duke of Norfolk, and resigned their house to him and his heirs, with all that belonged thereto, the Duke having procured leave of the King that he might receive it, and hold it to him and his heirs for ever, which was confirmed by Act of Parliament, anno 31st Henry VIII. and then it was joined to the other manors, with which it now continues. (fn. 19) [1736.] The resignation of this abbey may be seen in Dugdale's Monast. vol. iii. fol. 33, and was signed by Wm. Flatbury, abbot, Robert Bungay, prior, John Facon, sub-prior, Tho. Hadley, celerer, Wm. Dunwich, Robert Dunwich, and Peter Elmham, monks. The commonage of the 200 sheep was laid to Vise de Lieu's, or Shelfhanger Hall, as it is now called, and Frier's Hall was soon after demolished; it stood just by the gate going from Brisingham common to Shelfhanger Hall.
Shelfhanger Manor, alias D'Aveler's,
The first parcel constituted the manor called D'AVELER'S. (fn. 20)
The second was in the abbey till the Dissolution, with other lands that were afterwards given. The third was joined to Brisingham manor, and always attended it, so that I have no occasion to speak any more of the two last in this place.
William le Loverd, or Lord, whose son John sold half of it to Bartholomew, son of Robert de Anwelhyers, the successour of Ralph de Burgo, so that he had two parts out of three; this part was held of the said William, by the service of a pair of gloves yearly: but I must observe, that Alequis de Scirewood, or Sherewood, had the Burghs part, in which family it continued two or three generations, and then came to Robert, father of Bartholomew aforesaid.
Richard, who was in the custody of Cassandra, his mother, by grant of Hugh de Burgh, Justiciary (Chief Justice,) with whom she compounded for 20s. The possessions of this Richard, (fn. 21) which laid here, and in Brome and Everwarton, (now Arwarton,) in Suffolk, were then worth 40l. per annum, and were all held by serjeantry, viz. by the service of conducting the foot soldiers of the two counties of Norfolk and Suffolk, for 40 days, at the King's summons, from St. Edmund's Ditch (now called Devil's Ditch on Newmarket Heath) to the King's army in Wales, for which he was to have 4d. of each, for conduct money, and the rest of their maintenance was to be at the King's cost, and by this tenure it always passed. The Abbot at first was to do this service, till he granted this part chargeable with it.
John his son, who died in anno 1318. This (fn. 22) John sold all to
Walter de Shelfhanger and John de Sotesbrook, or Stokesbrook, who afterwards became one of the heirs of the said Walter; and, in 1286, took possession by the King's license, and had free-warren allowed him in all his lands. This manor had a house and park, 80 acres of arable land, one acre and a half of meadow, a mill, and 10s. rent. (fn. 23) That in Brome had a messuage, 60 acres of land, 4 of meadow, and 4 of pasture, &c.; all which were to be held of the said John D'Avelers. This John married Isabel Ufford, who was endowed in Arwarton manor, by whom he left
Bartholomew, his son, who became lord of all these manors; by which it seems, that the grant of this and Brome was only for life. He married Joan, relict of John, son of William de Caldecote, and died 18th April, 1330, leaving her a widow, and four daughters, his coheirs; Isabel, married to Sir Robert Bacon, Knt. had Everwarton; Cicely, to Brian de Hykeling, and had Brome; Margaret and Joan, one of which (I have some reason to think) married to Richard Daniel, who had Shelfhanger: the whole came afterwards to Isabel Bacon, (probably for want of issue of the other sisters,) who afterwards married to Sir Oliver Calthorp, and carried the three manors into that family. The D'Aviliers arms were, arg. three inescutcheons gul. and are now quartered by Bacon and Calthorp, by the name of D'Ylers. It was after divided into many parts, by which the manor was all lost, except some trifling rents, which were in the Duke of Norfolk in 1536; it was then called Sherwood's in Shelfhanger. It remains now  with the other manors.
Made a free tenement, called by the owner's name, to which many services belonged, and daily increased, as the owners of the tenement sold off their lands, all which they made payable to the celerer of the abbey, to discharge the capital tenement of the rent and service due from it to the abbey; and when enough was sold to answer that purpose, it became a freehold only, and as such has passed ever since; this was finished in 1266, by John le Loverd, (fn. 24) when the lands of the abbey were extended, and all their revenues settled on the sacrist and celerer, who let them to Guy of Shelfhanger, who was to answer all rents and services for them. The lords of Hoe's manor usually farmed them and received the rents. The Black Register tells us, that Hammond Peccutum (fn. 25) (or Pecche) confirmed to Abbot Anselm all that land, and 2s. rent, which his grandmother Jenetta, and his mother Esyly, had given to that convent; all which, in 1281, (fn. 26) were valued to answer 20s. per annum clear.
From its situation on the great road near that place; it laid in Shelfhanger, and anciently belonged to the Berdewells, being held of their manor of Gatesthorp, by the annual rent of a pound of pepper; half of it, in 1280, was owned by Walter de Winfarthing, and in 1298, by Robert, his son and heir, who paid half a pound of pepper for himself and all his tenants, which were about thirty in number; some of them were obliged to double service for their lands, viz. to pay one rent to the lord of the tenement, and another to the chief lord of the fee, and all together were to pay 2s. 3d. and the fourth part of a farthing, to the King's scutage, whenever it happened, the whole contained in demeans 50 acres, the tithes of which were divisible, one tithe sheaf to Shelfhanger rector, and two to the monks of Thetford. The other half was held by John le Lord, and his tenants, by the same services; the manor of Gatesthorp (or Gasthorp in Norfolk) had this rent always paid to it, and is said to extend into Winfarthing. In 1392, the whole pepper rent was laid upon one acre, in one piece, and was then received; I am apt to think, this was that part of Winfarthing manor that reached into Shelfhanger, and that it was granted by the lords of Winfarthing to the lord of Gasthorp; for Domesday informs us, that Winfarthing (fn. 27) reached hither.
And this is the whole I know of these manors, all which in 1532 were in Thomas Duke of Norfolk, and being then joined, have continued together, without any other distinction, as they do at this day, [1736,] the style of the court running thus, Shelfhanger, Visedelieu, Hoe's, and Frier's.