An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 7. Originally published by W Miller, London, 1807.
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The King's manor of Fakenham extended into this village; there were here, and in East Barsham, 3 freemen, who held 3 acres of land, and one carucate, which was valued and measured in that manor. (fn. 1)
This was possessed by the family of De Haviles, by petit serjeanty, of whom see in Dunton, and in Kettleston; after them, Thomas de Mileham, and Beatrix his wife, in the 8th of Edward III. and afterwards by Nicholas de Attechirch.
But the principal lordship was, at the survey, in Peter de Valoines, and held under him by Ralph: Manna, a freeman, was deprived of it at the conquest, who had one carucate of land, with 24 bordarers, and one servus, one carucate in demean, and a carucate and 4 acres of meadow amongst the men, a mill, and 6 cows; and 6 socmen held 40 acres of land, and 2 bordarers, a carucate and 5 acres of meadow, valued at 40s. and was half a leuca long, and 3 furlongs broad, and paid 12d. gelt. (fn. 2)
Walcote and Bole's Manor.
Ralph, who held this lordship under the Lord Valoins, was probably the ancestor of the family of De Snaring, of this town; Philip de Snaring was found to hold three parts of a fee, and Geff. de Snaring half a fee, of the Lord Valoins, in the 12th of King Henry II.; of these lords see in Dersingham.
Sir Geff. de Snaring, by Basilia his wife, was father of Richard de Snaring. Maud de Snaring, widow, by deed sans date, gave her mill, and pond, of Wykeney, to the monks of Acre, after the death of Richard, her brother.
Sir Philip de Snaring had several daughters and coheirs; Matilda, or Mabilia, married to —Bole, who in her widowhood granted lands to Reginald de Burgo;—Agnes, married to Philip de Styvekeys;—Beatrix, to Henry de Playford; and Basilia, to—Le Strange of Litcham. Matilda and Basilia were found to hold here, and in Stiberde, a fee, of Robert Lord Fitz Walter, in Henry the Third's time.
In the 6th of Edward I. John, son of Ralph Le Strange of Litcham, held lands here; and Adam Bole granted lands by fine, part of this manor, to Richard Bole, for life, in the 14th of that King: to this Richard, and John Le Strange, Henry de Warham, and Richard Le Rus, of Lexham, conveyed by fine the advowson of this church, in the 13th of the said reign; and on this, Bole and Le Strange had the alternate presentation of this church. In the 17th year of the aforesaid King, John, son of John Le Strange, and Clementia his wife, bought of John de Stoneham, and Roger de Neketon, several messuages and lands, with the homages, services, &c. of several persons, and had the moiety of the manor of Naring Parva. Ralph Le Strange was found to be his brother and heir, in the 33d of Edward I. or Ralph was rather heir to this manor, being settled on him by fine.
The jury, in the 15th of the aforesaid King, present that the bridge, called Wodebrig, in the way between Naring Parva and Crysford, was broke, and that John son of John Le Strange of Litcham, lord of Naring Parva, ought to repair it, and the sheriff was ordered to see it done. In the 9th of Edward II. William Bole, and Joan his wife, had a moiety. Sir William Bole, was lord in the 18th of that King, and John Bole and Agnes his wife, in the 20th of Edward III.
In the 10th of Edward II. Ralph, son of John Le Strange, conveyed by fine, to Alexander de Walcote, and Maud his wife, (probably daughter and heir of Ralph,) a moiety of this manor, with the advowson, except 4 messuages, 53 acres of land, 6 of wood, 3 of heath, 12 of wood, and 12s. rent, part of the said moiety, held for life, by Clementia, widow of John Le Strange, settled on Alexander and Maud, in tail, remainder to Elizabeth Mariot, and Margaret, daughters of Alexander; and in the 13th of Edward III. Alexander conveyed the said premises to Walter de Walcote, and Margaret his wife, and died in the 29th of that King, lord of this town, and of Gunton.
Robert de Berney, and Margaret his wife, (fn. 3) one of the daughters and coheirs of Sir Walter de Walcote, passed by fine, levied in the 6th of Richard II. to Margaret, widow of John Elys, senior, of Gernemuth, the 3d part of the manor of Snoring Parva, called Walcotes, with the 3d part of the advowson; and in 11th of that King, Sir Symon de Felbrigg, Knt. Robert Hereward, and Margaret Elys, were querents, and John Dorward, and Catherine his wife, (another of Walcote's daughters and coheirs,) were deforcients in a fine, who passed to Margaret Elys, their 3d part: the other daughter and coheir was Elizabeth, wife, of Edmund de Wilton.
Catherine, widow of John Cokerell of Albergh Wykes, in Suffolk, died seized, the 6th of Henry VI. of the manors of Walcote's and Boles, in this town, the manors of Ickworth, and Weynford, by Brandon Ferry, in Suffolk, which she left to Catherine, daughter of John Cokerell, junior, her son, (by John Cokerell, senior,) who died before his father; and the said Catherine was in the 10th of the said King, found to die a minor, and the jury knew not who was her heir.
In the 29th of Henry VI. George Heath, of Mildenhale, released to Humphrey Duke of Buks, all his right in Walcote's, and Bole's manor, but in the 18th of Henry VII. Christopher Conyers, and Alice his wife, conveyed it to the Heydons.
About 1570, Sir Christopher Heydon was lord; and Sir William Heydon sold it to Sir George Kingsmill, who was lord in 1603: after this it was serjeant Gwin's; and Mr. Matthew Helcotte possessed it; then Sir Jacob Astley, Bart. was lord, and Sir Edward, his son, now possesses it.
Robert Smith, rector, by his will in 1525, gave the house that he lived in, to the repair, and maintenance of the church, on the condition that the churchwardens keep yearly his exequies on the third Sunday in Lent, and on Monday after, a commemoration, with mass for his soul, and for his parents and benefactors. (fn. 4)