An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 2. Originally published by W Miller, London, 1805.
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COULSTON, alias COLVESTON,
Lies on the opposite shore to Cranwich, on the north side of the river Wissey, the hundred of Grimeshoe crossing here that river, and taking in this town and that of Ickburgh. In Domesday it is wrote Covestuna, and derives its name from the Saxon word Love, a small creak, and tun or ton, a town or village.
At the survey it was the lordship of William Earl Warren, but in the Confessor's time, was held by a freeman of Harold's, afterwards King of England, who had one carucate of land in demean, 12 acres of meadow, and a fishery, and was valued at 8s. per annum; it was five furlongs long, and four broad, and paid 5d. ob. when the hundred paid 20s. gelt. (fn. 1)
Soon after the Conquest, this village was held of the Earl Warren, the capital lord, by a family that assumed their name from it, a practice frequent in that age, and Jordan de Colveston, lord, by his deed sans date, (about the reign of King Henry I. as I take it,) gave to the monks of Castle-Acre, the rent of 3s. per annum, out of his mill called Wor-Milne, in this place; (fn. 2) the witnesses were, Jeffrey his heir, Robert his brother, Gilbert de Rising, Richard the priest of Mundeford, William his nephew, &c. After this, about the reign of King John,
Sir John de Loden, son of John de Loden, was lord, and gave by deed to the monks of Castle-Acre, 3s. per annum out of his manor, instead of the 3s. given them out of the mill above-mentioned; witnesses were, Sir Osbert de Caily, Sir Gilbert de Fransham, Sir Reginald de Dunham, Sir Alexander Arsyk, Sir Frederick de Capervill, Master Edmund de Massingham, Alan de Wessenham, John de Hoo, &c.
In 3d Edward I. Robert de Loden, or Lodne, was lord, and had the assize of bread and beer here; (fn. 3) and the men of this town and Ickburgh are said to be obliged to go to the leet of the hundred of Weyland, and to pay 12d. there; but in 9th Edward II. (fn. 4)
Lettice Atte-Hooe was returned lady of the manor; and in the following year, John Earl Warren aliened, with the King's license, (fn. 5) this lordship to
John was his son and heir, aged 20, by Mary his wife, daughter of William Lord Roos, and widow of Thomas de Brotherton Earl of Norfolk; and in the next year proved his age, and had livery. In 33d Edward III. being then a knight, he served that King in the wars of France, and had in his retinue Sir John de Northwold, Sir John Crispin, John Devenish, John Atte-chirche, &c.; and in the 37th of the said King, the 3d of June, he grants to King Edward III. and his heirs, (after his own decease,) this manor, with many others in several counties, and delivered a ring of gold to the King, in name of seisin, and was found to die seized of it in 1st Richard II. (fn. 6)
On the death of Sir John Cobham, the lordship came to John de Herling of East-Herling in Norfolk, to whom and his heirs King Edward III. gave the reversion, on the 8th of November, in his 38th year, after the death of the aforesaid Sir John Cobham; (fn. 7) but in the 3d of Henry IV.
The Church has been in ruins time immemorial; it stood a little west of the present farm-house, and was dedicated to the Virgin Mary; (fn. 8) It formerly belonged to St. Bartholomew of Ichburgh, as the mother and baptismal church, concerning the advowson of which there had been a dispute between Jeffry, son of Jordan of Colveston, and the monks of St. Pancrace of Lewes, to whom he released, before Bishop William of Norwich, Jordan Prior of Acre, Ralph de Albini, and Roger de Waxtenesham, the Bishop's notary. (fn. 9) In it there were the arms of England, the Earl Warren, and the Earl of Clare. (fn. 10) John de Lodnes, lord of the town, by a fine levied in the 20th Henry III. (fn. 11) granted the patronage of it to the Prior and Convent of Lewes in Sussex; but it appears from the Institution Books, that that convent did not present till the year 1375.
1329, 24 March, William de Surlingham. (fn. 12)
1536, 4 March, Robert Halmon, on the death of Bothe. Robert Holdych, Esq. He was also rector of Boughton, and deprived in 1553, being a married priest. (fn. 13)
1556, 28 July, Robert Spirgyn, (fn. 14) on the deprivation of the last rector. Richard Holditch, Esq.
1592, 12 Oct. Thomas Hopes, alias Hooper, A. M. (fn. 15) on the resignation of Turner. Henry Holdiche, Esq. He was vicar also of Didlington, and afterwards rector of North-Rungton in Norfolk.
Henry Constable, by his will dated 20 Dec. 1489, gives 12 acres and an half of land in Didlington, to the rector of Colveston, on condition that he prays for his soul, and to St. Mary's gild here, 6 acres and 3 roods of land in Didlington. (fn. 16)
Tho. Hogg, by his will in 1492, gives two ewes to the gild of St. John Baptist here. (fn. 17)