An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 11. Originally published by W Miller, London, 1810.
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William de Scohies had a grant of this lordship of Reedham, which Brietric, a Saxon, possessed in King Edward's reign, and was deprived on the conquest; it consisted of a carucate of land, (and Richard held it under Scohies at the survey) 11 borderers, and 3 servi, &c. one carucate and a half in demean, &c. one carucate and a half among the tenants, with 20 acres of meadow, valued at 40s. at the survey at 60s. one leuca and 3 furlongs long, and half a leuca broad, paid 16d. gelt whoever held it.
There was one church endowed with 40 acres, valued at 6s. and 8d. (fn. 1)
There is an old tradition relating to this town, mentioned by historians, which is not to be passed by; (fn. 2)
Lodbroc, said to be a Danish king, but supposed by Sir John Spilman to have been King of Zeland, hawking among certain little islands, in a boat, was by a sudden tempest carried out to sea, and drove ashore here, and brought to Edmund, King of the East Angles, then residing at Castor in Flegg, who being pleased with his behaviour, fortune, and great skill in hunting, Bern, the king's falconer, envying him, murdered him privately in a wood. Lothbrok's dog was observed in a day or two, to come to the King's house, half famished, and as soon as fed to be gone again, and being on the King's command watched, brought them to the body of his dead master.
Bern being found guilty of this murder, was condemned to be put into the boat that Lothbrock arrived in, and committed to the mercy of the sea, without provision or tackle. This boat being providentially driven on the same place it came from, and known, Bern was seised, and to save himself, declared that Lothbrock, on his arrival into England had been killed by order of King Edmund.
Hingar, and Hubba, the 2 sons of Lothbroc, swearing revenge, invaded with 20,000 men, Edmund's kingdom of the East-Angles, attended by Bern the traitor, and by them Edmund was barbarously murdered, in the year 870.
The truth of this tradition may be justly called in question, on many accounts. It is not to be credited, that Lothbroc, in his great distress, would have passed by Yarmouth, at the mouth of the river Yar, and gone up in search of another port or place, especially as Yarmouth was at that time, and long before, a port, and a place of fame in the time of the Britons and Romans.
Richard, who held this lordship under Scohies at the survey, was probably father of Asketel, and assumed the name of Redham, according to the custom of that age. (fn. 3)
Asketel de Redham was living, as the register of Holm abbey testifies, in the time of Richard, abbot of Holm, which was in 1125. Osbern de Redham seems to be his son, was lord of Redham Hall, (fn. 4) and also held the 5th part of a fee in this town, in the time of Anselm abbot of Holm, (about 1150) of the said abbey.
Stephen, son of Osbern, was lord in the 12th of Henry II. Osbern had also a son and heir, Bartholomew de Redham, whose son Stephen, in an assise, brought the 30th of Henry III. for the church of Scothow, was then living. (fn. 5)
In the said year, William de Redham and Matthew his son, granted Stephen the liberty of hunting in their warren here, and of fishing in Woltun mead, and catching of birds, with the services of some persons; and Ralph, parson of the church, granted to Stephen away without the ditch of Stephen's court, between the churchyard, and the said court, 3 feet broad, from the gate of the said court to the east, and from the said court to the west, by the said churchyard, such a breadth, that one cart may pass another.
Bartholomew was son of Stephen, and a knight, in the 13th of Edward I. had 2 sons, Sir Stephen, and William, rector of Irstede, and heir to his brother. Sir Stephen dying s. p. the inheritance came to the other branch of the Redhams.
Sir William de Redham, granted in the 10th of Edward I. to the abbot of Holm all his right of fishery, from Weybridge to the abbey; (fn. 6) witnesses, Sir Thomas Rosceline, and Sir Bartholomew Redham; he was sheriff of Norfolk in the 8th, 20th, and 21st of Edward I.
In the 15th of that King, he claimed free warren, the assise, gallows, &c. and died in the 22d of the said King, in the time of his being sheriff, when William his son answered for him, and he died in the 19th of Edward II.
William his son and heir, by Joan his wife, being aged 26, had livery of this lordship, held of Jeffrey de Say, of the barony of Lewis; in 1327 he presented to the church of Redham, and to Stokeby, in 1357. In the 15th of Edward III this lordship was settled on him and Maud his wife for life, remainder on William and John their sons in tail, and died before the year 1339.
William Pavy of Gissing, and Maud his wife, late wife of William de Redham, presented, having recovered her right against William de Redham, (her son, as I take it,) and the said Maud presented also in 1355.
Sir William de Redham, son of William and Maud his wife, married Margaret, daughter of Sir Robert de Caston, by Joan his wife, daughter and heir of Richard Barry, Esq. lord of Rockland Tofts, by whom he had a daughter and heir Margaret, who married Thomas Berney, Esq. 2d son of John Berney, Esq. of Witchingham.
This Thomas had large possessions in his right, as heir to the Reedhams, Castons, &c. with the lordship of this town, and was knight; his will is dated on Thursday next after the feast of AllSaints, in 1383, and was buried at Reedham, being proved on November 21; Margery his wife survived, and married John Copledike, Esq. and they presented to Reedhum church in 1391. (fn. 7)
The history of the baronetage, (fn. 8) says" that the first we find mentioned is Roger de Berney, whose son Richard de Berney, by Catherine, daughter of Roger Gyney, Esq. had issue Henry de Berney, living in 1268."—Gyney bore paly of six, or and gules, a chief, ermine.
That the family had an interest in the town of Berney, soon after the conquest, may in a good measure be proved from the assuming the name of it, which was the custom and practice at that time, of all who held any lordships, and it is very probable that William, who was enfeoffed of the town of Berney, and held it at the time of the grand survey under Peter Lord Valoines, the capital lord of it, was ancestor of the family.
To confirm this, we find by the register of Binham priory, that Ralph the prior gave to Adam de Berney, their man, that is, one that held lands of them, and his heirs, 50, and 67 acres in the said town.
This Ralph was living in the reign of Henry II. Ao. 1174, when Tengrin was archdeacon of Norwich, and Adam being in this grant styled the prior's man, that title sets forth that he held other lands or a manor of that priory, to which religious house, the Lord Nalvines, on his foundation of it, had granted the manor of Berney, to be held in capite.
Henry de Berney, son of Richard, as the pedigree says, was father of John, by —his wife, daughter of Sir John de Harsike, which John resided much at his house in Norwich, called Berney's-Inn. Joan his wife was daughter of Bartholomew de Witchingham, by whom came the estate in that town,) he had a son John, and a daughter Margaret, married to Peter de Naunton, son of Bartholomew de Naunton.
This John lived at Witchingham, was one of the burgesses for the city of Norwich in the 9th of Edward III. in the 19th of that King was a commissioner in an inquisition on a writ of Quod Damnum, concerning the fee of the castle of Norwich. In the following year was knight of the shire of Norfolk; also in the 22d of the said King, with Robert Clere, Esq. and were allowed 14l. 10s. for 34 days attendance; he served also in parliament in the 31st of that reign, and had allowed for 34 days attendance, 6l. 8s.
The above John was an eminent lawyer; his will is dated at Norwich on Thursday, February 23, in the 48th of Edward III. wherein he desires to be buried in the chapel of St. Anne in the church of the Holy Trinity of Norwich, by his late wife Joan, if the prior and convent will grant leave, if not, in the chapel of St. Ann, built by him and annexed to the parish church of Burgh by Apton, by Sarah his late wife, and names Catherine his wife, then living, Robert and Thomas his sons by Sarah, Alice his daughter, (married to Richard Holditch, Esq. of Didlington,) Isabel his daughter, and Agnes de Berney, his aunt; gives 5l. to repair the cathedral of Norwich; 30s. to the prior, to Joseph a monk there, 20s. to every monk 2s. 26l. to keep his seventh, and 30th day after his burial, and founded an anniversary on the day of his death, when the monks were to have 20s. for a pittance, besides wine; orders five wax tapers of 5 pound weight each, and 7 torches, to be set by his coffin in the church at his burial. (fn. 9)
In the 5th of Edward III. a fine was levied between this John de Berney and Sarah his wife, querents, Bartholomew Bateman and Petronilla his wife, John de Aire, and Arabella his wife, deforcients, of lands in Bergh, Thurton, Sything, and Mendham, part of which, Agnes, widow of Henry de Heylesdon, held for life. (fn. 10) This Sarah his wife was a daughter of Sir Bartholomew Bateman; Catherine, his 3d wife, was daughter of Peter de Bedingfield.
By the escheat rolls, in the 48th of Edward III. he was found to hold the manor of Fishley with lands in Wychingham, Newton, Bergh, Flotman, and Swenestohrp, and he is said not to have been (as the pedigree sets forth) the son of Henry, but of Richard de Berney and Alice his wife.
Robert his son was a knight batchelor of John Duke of Lancaster, and of Wichingham; so that we return to Thomas his brother, who married Margaret, daughter and heir of Sir William de Redham, from whom is the following descent and pedigree.
(1) John Berney, Esq. in the 3d of Henry VI. held the manor of Reedham of William Say, by half a fee, as part of the honour of Lancaster. His will and testament bears date on Thursday next after the feast of St. Barnabas the Apostle, 1440, and wills to be buried in the church of St. John Baptist of Redham, and beseeches my Lord of Suffolk, that he make an estate to Philip Berney his son, of the manor of Caston with the advowson, to him and his heirs, remainder to Thomas Berney, also to make an estate of the manor of Shipdam, called Caston's, to John Berney his son, remainder to Philip his brother. (fn. 11)
Item, he wills that his feoffees in the manor of Wichingham St. Faith's, called Turtevile's, with the lands in Mykil Wychingham, Boton, Sparham, Swanington, Attylbrigg, Heynesford, &c. make an estate to John Berney his son: Philip his son to have Kirkhall manor in Rockland-Tofts for life, remainder to Thomas his brother.
The above John names Elizabeth, Margery, Margaret, and Isabel his daughters; Thomas Berney to have 300 ewes, and 100 weders, in the marsh called Foul-Holm; gives 10l. for a legend to Redham church; 40s. to the making of Bradeston steeple; proved September 5, 1440.
(2) Thomas Berney, Esq. son and heir of John, made his testament on Thursday before the feast of St. George, 1441, desires to be buried against the north door in Reedham church. (fn. 12)
He appoints Sir John Heveningham, Miles Stapleton, Thomas Brews, Ralph Garnist, Esq. &c. feoffees of his manor of Bradeston, with the appurtenances in Strumpshagh, the Birlinghams, Wilton, Brundale, Blofield, &c. with the advowson of Stokesby, appoints for Elizabeth his wife, the 3d part of the manor of Reedham and Breydeston, in dower for life.
He orders that if the churches of Redham, Stokesby, Strumpshaw, North and South Birlingham, should be empty, during the nonage of his heir, his feoffees should present to Redham, Gyles Horning, chaplain; to Stokesby, Thomas Lawes, chaplain; to Strumpshagh, Robert Dowe, late rector of Thurne; to North Birlingham, William Dean, of Blofield, chaplain, &c.
John Berney, Esq. brother of Thomas, and son of John, by his will, dated on Monday next after St. Petronil the Virgin, in 1560, requires to be buried in the porch on the north part of Redham church. (fn. 13)
He gives legacies to find lights before the images of the Blessed Virgin Mary, St. Peter, and St. Nicholas the Bishop, to each 3s. 4d.; to St. John Baptist guild 6s. 8d.; and to the brotherhood of the town, 6s. 8d.; and one great cypress chest for the safe keeping the ornaments of the church.
He settles on John Berney, his nephew, son of Thomas his brother, his manor of Caston, with that of Shipdam, and that of Turtevile's in Wichingham Parva, orders the said John and his executors, to maintain a chaplain after his decease, to pray for his soul, and the souls of John Berney his father and Isabel his mother, in the church of Redham, for four years, with a competent salary, for the said chaplain; proved in 1461.
Philip Berney, Esq. the eldest brother, by his testament, (fn. 14) dated on Wednesday next after the feast of Pentecost, 1453, wills to be buried in the church of Redham, and gives to John his brother, the manors of Caston, and Shipdam; to Margaret Naunton his sister, a cup, and to William Naunton her son, a legacy; proved August 6, 1453.
(4) On an inquisition taken at Norwich, November 7, Ao. 28th of Henry VIII. John Berney, Esq. was found to die on the 27th of October past, seised of the manor and advowson of Redham, held of Sir William Say, the manor and advowson of Stokesby, held of Catherine Queen of England, in fee farm, as of the honour of Clare, Norton Subcross manor, held of the manor of Loddon, Caston Hall in Shipdam, held of the manor of Saham, and Caston Hall manor in Caston, with Barry's manor in Rockland Tofts, Bradeston manor held of the manor of Blofield, Turtevile's manor in Wychinham Parva, held of Castleacre manor, Bradeston manor and advowson, with the chapel of St. Clement, North and South Birlingham manors, with the manor and advowson of Strumpshagh, held of the manor of Blofield.
(5) John Berney, Esq. by his will, dated July 22, 1553, (fn. 15) desires to be buried at Redham, in the chapel where his ancestors are buried; by Margaret his first wife, he left a son Henry, and several daughters; Mary, Thomasine, Elizabeth, Ursula, and Ela.
Thomasine married Thomas Osborn, Esq. of Kirby Bedon in Norfolk;—married—Sydnor of Blundeston in Suffolk, Esq.— married — Cuddon of Shading field in Suffolk, Esq. and Mary to Robert Jenney of Herling fleet, Esq.
(6) Henry Berney, Esq. married Alice, daughter of Roger Appleton of Dartford in Kent, Esq. and Agnes his wife, daughter of Walter Clark of Hadley in Suffolk, Esq. and heir to her brother Edward; in the reign of Philip and Mary, he removed the old family seat near Redham church, into Redham park, where he built a magnificent seat, yet standing, called Park-hall, with large gardens, &c. in 1557, and died in 1584, leaving several sons and daughters; Thomas, his son and heir, Henry, John, Edward, and Richard.
Alice his wife survived him, and erected a handsome marble altar monument over him in the chapel, on the south side of the chancel of the church, with both their effigies thereon, their sons behind him, and daughters behind her, and this distich:
On it are the arms of Berney, quartering Redham, gules, a chevron engrailed, between three reed sheafs, or, in the 2d quarter; in the 3d, Caston, gules, a chevron between three eagles displayed, argent, and Berney in the 4th quarter, impaling Appleton, argent, a fess engrailed, sable, between three apples, leaved proper, and - - - - quarterly.
This Sir Thomas left 4 sons; first, William, who married Elizabeth, daughter of Sir Edward Coke, lord chief justice of England, and died s. p. 2d, John, died s. p. 3d, Richard; 4th, Thomas, who was sheriff of Norfolk Ao. 22d of Charles I. and ancestor of the family of Swerdeston in Norfolk.
He was also high sheriff in the 4th year of William III. and died s. p. having sold the family seat at Redham, and spent very near his whole estate. His manors of Redham, Norton Subcross, Caston, Shipdam, Kirkhall in Rockland, Saham, Leny, the Birlinghams Strumpshagh, Bradeston, Frethorp, Limpenhaw cum Southwaod, &c. being sold to pay his debts.
The 3d son of Richard, was John Berney of Westwick, Esq. who married Susan, daughter of John Staines, Gent. and left 2 sons, John and Richard. John the eldest, married first, Bridget, daughter of William Branthwait of Hethill, Esq. and had 2 daughters; Julian, married to Thomas Brograve of Herefordshire, Esq. and Elizabeth.
The 2d son of John, was Richard Berney, Esq. recorder of Norwich, and burgess of that city, in the two last parliaments of Queen Anne, and married Mary daughter of Augustine Briggs of Norwich, Esq. leaving one daughter, Elizabeth, married to Thomas Brampston of Loreens in Essex, Esq. and knight of that shire in parliament.
(9) Sir Thomas Berney, Bart. to whom Sir Richard his father gave but a slender fortune, (though since much improved,) married Sarah, daughter of Captain Thomas Tyrell of Essex, governor of Languard Fort in King Charles the Second's reign, by whom he had first Richard, 2nd, Thomas, 3d, John Berney of Wesenham, Esq. who married Philippa, daughter of Sir Thomas Brown of Elsing, and left Thomas Berney of Lynn Regis, recorder of that town. He married Julian, daughter of Sir Richard Berney, Bart. and had 2 sons, Thomas and Richard.—William Berney, rector of Westwick, was the 4th son, who by Mary, daughter of Henry Harcock, Gent. had one son, William, rector of Newton Flotman, and Fretenham in Norfolk, who married Dorothy, daughter of Sir Richard aforesaid, and has several sons.
First, Richard; 2d, Thomas,; William; Robert; Henry, and John, who is D.D. rector of Hethersete, and archdeacon of Norfolk. Julian his daughter, and Dorothy married above; Frances and Sarah died single, and Elizabeth is still living unmarried. Sir Richard died May—, 1706; he lived and had a seat at Kirby Bedon in Norfolk.
(11) Sir Richard Berney, Bart. son and heir of Sir Richard, died single, and was succeeded by his brother, Sir Thomas who, by Elizabeth his wife, daughter and heir of Simon Folkes, Esq. of Suffolk, and Elizabeth Hanson his wife, had a considerable estate in Barbadoes, and 2 sons, Sir Hanson Berney, Bart. and Richard, rector of Stokesby in Norfolk.
Also Fowks in an escotheon of pretence, per pale, gules and vert, a de-lis, ermine quartering argent, three mascles, azure, on a chief of the same, three lioncels rampant, of the first, Hanson, crest a plume of ostrich feathers out of a ducal coronet, motto, Nil Temere, Neq; Timore.
This lordship, on the sale of the estate of Richard Berney, Esq. came to Sir James Edwards of London, about 1700, and after to Sir Lambert Blackwell, Bart. whose heirs were lords, and had the patronage of the church in 1720, in 1727, Sir John Eyles, Bart. Sir Thomas Cross, Bart. &c. presented.
The abbey of St. Bennet of Holm had a lordship here, (of the gift probably of King Canute,) with one carucate of land, 2 villains, and 5 borderers, one carucate in demean, and one of the tenants, with 20 acres of meadow, 6 cows, 6 swine, 20 sheep, and a socman had 3 acres, valued then at 10s. but at the survey at 20s.—This with Bastwick was half a leuca long, and half a one broad, paid 16d. gelt, the abbot had the soc at Redeham of those who folded their cattle in his field, but the soc of the others were in the hundred.
The family of De Redeham was early enfeoffed of this lordship, and held it of the abbot of Holm. (fn. 16)
In the 11th of Edward I. Sir Bartholomew de Redham granted and agreed with Nicholas, then abbot, that if he could recover the manor of Ingham from John de Ingham; he would perform the service due to the abbot, for the same; (fn. 17) and in the 15th of that King, Elizabeth, late wife of Oliver de Ingham, had a lordship, and claimed view of free warren, assise, a gallows, &c. and her dower.
John Atte Croos, escheator, in his account, after the death of William Methelwold, abbot, who died about 1395, (fn. 18) and before the promotion of Robert de Sca. Fide, (St. Faith's,) and after his death, before that Simon de Brigham, accounts nothing for this lordship, as being at that time represented to be nothing worth.
The King had in this town at the survey, 3 socmen, who possessed 40 acres of land, with 7 borderers, and 6 acres of meadow, and there were under them 6 socmen, with 20 acres of land, and among them all a carucate.
In the 32d of that King, Walter Pye had an interest herein. The said Walter, in the 5th of Edward II. conveyed by fine several messuages, and lands in Redham, Lympenhoe, Frethorp and Southwood, to William de Carleton and Alice his wife, who settled them on Walter.
In the 9th of that King, Robert de Barsham and Margaret his wife, granted several lands, and rents, with a mill in this town, Lympenhoe, &c. sold to Sir Jeffrey Wythe, and Isabell his wife, and held after by Sir William Wythe and Isabel his wife, and held after by Sir Oliver Wythe.
In the 5th of Henry VI. a fine was levied between Henry Inglose and Anne his wife querents, Alice, the widow of Sir John Jenney deforcient, of the manor of Withes in this town, and that of Lounde in Suffolk, settled on Anne, who granted it to Alice for life.
In the 6th of Henry VII. Sir William Calthorp and Elizabeth his wife, on July 26, settled the manor of Wyth's here, on their feoffees, for Francis Calthorp their son, and Elizabeth his wife, daughter of Sir John Wyndham.
John Wychingham, Esq. died March 28, in the 20th of Henry VII. lord, when it is said to be held by fealty of John Berney's manor of Redham. Sir Thomas Windham, in the 11th of Henry VIII. conveyed a moiety of Park-Hall, to Elizabeth Yaxley, &c.
In 1360, William de Burgh, parson of Cantley, William de Felmingham, &c. gave to the prior of the Holy Trinity of Ipswich, 140 acres of marsh here and in Mouton, held of the Bishop of Norwich, by 6d. per ann.
Under another gravestone lie John Berney, Esq. and Isabel, daughter of Heveningham, with their arms, also on a brass plate. Heveningham bore quarterly, or, and gules, in a border engrailed, sable, 8 escallops, argent.
In the windows are the arms of Mortimer, of Attleburgh, of Norwich, per pale, argent and gules, a lion rampant, Mautby, Calthorp, Yelverton, impaling Berney, and sable, a fess dauney, or, between three horses heads, gules.
Naunton, sable, three mullets, argent. Osborn, argent, on a bend, sable, two hounds sable, three dolphins or. Cuddon, argent, a chevron between three crescents, gules, on a chief, azure, three bezants. Tyrell, argent, two chevronels, azure, in a bordure engrailed, gules.