An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 7. Originally published by W Miller, London, 1807.
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On the expulsion of Godwin, a freeman, who had a carucate of land under the protection of Guert, the Conqueror on his accession to the crown, gave it to Ralph Guade Earl of Norfolk, who was deprived as a rebel; and, at the survey, Gilbert, captain of the cross-bowmen, held it with two carucates of land; when there were five bordarers, with a carucate in demean, and the men always ploughed their lands with two oxen, paunage for 5 swine, and 25 acres of meadow; 12 freemen, with the moiety of another, possessed 90 acres of land, with a carucate and a half, valued formerly at 25s. but now at 40s. It was one leuca long, and half a one broad, and paid 7s. gelt. (fn. 1) Gilbert was also lord of Tunstal, in Walsham hundred, Shropham, in Shropham hundred, and Shelton, in Diss hundred.
The ancient family of De Sancto Omero, or St. Omer, were lords of this village. Cecilia de St. Omer, widow, lady of it, gave ten marks in the 6th year of King John, for the custody of William, son and heir of William Peverel, of Melton Magna in Norfolk; of this family was Sir Bartholomew de St. Omer.
Sir Thomas de St. Omer, in the 20th of Henry III. held it by half a fee of Robert Fitz-Roger, he of William Marshal, &c. William de St. Omer, in the 38th of that King, had a grant of a fair here, and in Mulbarton, with free warren, being then with the King in Gascoyn in France. Sir Thomas, his son and heir, married Petronilla, widow of Ralph Lord Tony: In 1275, he was a justice itinerant with Simon de Grey, in Cambridgeshire. In the preceding year he was sent with William de la Rivers into foreign parts, and had royal letters of protection, dated on the day next after Palm-Sunday, in March, with a clause to hold good to the feast of St. Peter ad vincula, ensuing; in the 15th of Edward I. he claimed, as lord, a yearly fair on the feast and morrow of St. Bartholomew, free warren, &c. as granted to his father. Thomas de St. Omer was lord in the 9th of Edward II.
In the 13th of the said King, a fine was levied between William de St. Omer and Elizabeth his wife, querents, and Bertram de St. Omer, deforcient, of the manor of Brundale, (except several messuages, and 34 acres of land,) and the advowson of the church, settled on William and Elizabeth, and the heirs of William. In 1319, William de St. Omer presented to the church as lord; also, in 1338, being then a knight. Sir Thomas de St. Omer was lord in 1349, and presented, and in 1350; but in the 39th of that King, he was found to die seized of this manor, that of Mickelbarton, Ketteringham, and Casteleyns, in Swerdeston. He had two wives; Petronilla, the first, daughter and coheir of Nicholas Malmains, by whom he had Alice, who married Sir William de Hoo; by Beatrix, his second wife, he had Elizabeth, who married Thomas Waryne, a younger son of John de Warren Earl Warren and Surry, (by Maud de Nerford, his concubine, to whom he was contraeted before his marriage with Joan, daughter of Henry Earl of Barre,) and brother of Sir John de Warren. In the 39th of Edward III. Beatrix, widow of Sir Thomas de St. Omer, had an assignation of dower, and, in the same year, was married to Sir Thomas de la River.
In the 47th of the said reign, Thomas Waryne, and Elizabeth his wife, conveyed their right in this manor, &c. to Sir William Hoo, and Alice his wife, by whom he had Sir Thomas, his son and heir. His second wife was Alianore, daughter of Sir John Wing field of Letheringham in Suffolk. Sir William was second son of Sir Thomas Hoo, and Isabel his wife, daughter and heir of Sir John de St. Legar. In 1386, he was governour of the castle of Oye in France, and died in 1410, aged 76.
Sir Thomas succeeded his father Sir William; and, in the 11th of Henry IV. he conveyed this lordship, by fine, to John Thornham and his heirs. Thomas Wetherby, Esq. of Norwich, by his will dated, November 12, 1444, gives it to Margaret his wife, remainder to John Winter, Esq. and Joan his wife; and John Jenny, Esq. and Elizabeth his wife, convey it in the 17th of Edward IV. with the advowson, to Henry Collet, citizen and alderman of London, from the heirs of Elizabeth, daughter and heir, probably, of Wetherby. Sir James Hobart, attorney-general, purchased it, (as I take it) of Sir Henry Collet, in the reign of Henry VII. and gave it to Miles Hobart, his second son, who was lord in the 15th of Henry VIII. and died lord in 1557. Henry Hobart, Esq. was lord and patron in 1595, and Sir Thomas Hobart in 1614, as was Sir Miles Hobart in 1628. After this, Edward Myleham, Gent. and Andrew Cleach; in 1701, William Hewar, Esq. of Clapham, in Surry; and William Hewar in 1740, lord and patron.
The tenths were 2l. 18s.—Deducted 8s.
The Church is a rectory, dedicated to St. Laurence; the ancient valor was 5 marks; paid Peter-pence 6d. carvage 2d. and in the reign of Edward I. paid to the hundred 58s. per ann. the present valor is 4l. 10s. and is discharged.
William occurs rector in the 52d of Henry III. and John de Blomevile in the 22d of Edward I.
1319, Ralph de St. Omer instituted, presented by William de St. Omer.
1329, Walter de Swaleclyfte, by Sir William de St. Omer.
1338, William le Hunt. Ditto.
1349, Remigius de Dunston, by Thomas de St. Omer.
1350, William Bonyng. Ditto.
1365, Richard Munch, by the King, guardian of the heir of Sir Thomas de St. Omer.
1368, Thomas de Wotton, by Beatrix, relict of Sir Thomas de Rivers.
1392, John Payn, by Sir Robert Carbonel, and Michael Downing.
1394, Matthew Oylmer. Ditto.
1397, John Scholveler, by Sir Robert Carbonel, and Robert Denny.
1403, William Preston, by Richard Dunston, rector of Mulbarton.
1412, John Fauconer, by William Bernham, &c.
1418, Simon Blake. Ditto.
1424, William Helgay, by William Bernham, true patron.
1430, Thomas Redhed, by William Paston, &c.
1482, John Sterke, by Henry Collet, alderman of London.
1484, Hugh Newhaw. Ditto.
John Newale, rector.
1488, Thomas Antingham, by Sir Henry Collet.
1500, Richard Benson, by Nicholas Goldwell, archdeacon of Suffolk.
Richard Percy, rector.
1530, Robert Brown, by Miles Hubberd, Esq.
1554, John Hogan. Ditto.
John Clement, rector.
1546, John Hers, by John Berney, Esq.
1557, Francis Garth, by Miles Hobart.
1563, Thomas Cordwall, by Sir Edward Warner, and Etheldra, his wife.
1576, John Buyrsell, by William Bleverhasset, and Lady Etheldreda Warner, his wife.
1595, Ralph Barlow, by Henry Hobart, Esq.
1614, Richard Pearson, by Sir Thomas Hobart.
1628, Thomas Day, by Sir Miles Hobart of Plumstede.
1657, John Brown, by Edward Myleham, Gent.
1681, John Russell, by And. Clench, and Francis Wise.
1701, John Cornwall, by William Hewar, Esq. patron.
1716, Robert Cubit, by Samuel Edgely, clerk.
1719, John Russell, junior. Ditto.
1723, Russell, senior. Ditto.
John Gogill occurs rector in 1747.
The Bishop of Norwich's manor of Bradston extended into this town, and had the same lords as Bradeston: and there was a chapel belonging to it, dedicated to St. Clement, valued with the rectory of Bradeston, the rector being instituted and presented to Bradeston, with the chapel of St. Clement. This part was also given by Bishop Beaufoe to his see, with Bradeston.