An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 8. Originally published by W Miller, London, 1808.
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Was the lordship of Berner, captain of the cross-bowmen, of which Eschet was deprived, who held 2 carucates of land, 6 villains, 18 borderers and 2 servi; in his time there were also 2 carucates in demean, and 2 among the tenants, a mill, &c. 18 goats and 5 socmen, with 32 acres of land, (and the King had the soc,) also one acre and a carucate of meadow, then valued at 40s. it was 7 furlongs long, and four broad, paid 6d. 3 farthings gelt. (fn. 1)
The town takes its name from its site, on the strand by the water; that is by the sea shore, being contiguous to it. Soon after the survey, probably on the decease of Berner, it came to the Earl Warren, and was held of him by the family of de Reymes. Geffrey, son of Herlewin, owed 20 marks of silver, in the 5th of King Stephen, to have his land of Robert de Reymes. (fn. 2)
Agnes de Ratlesden, wife of Adam de Ratlesden, in the 34th of Henry III. impleaded Richer de Reymes, for a fourth part of a fee in this town, (then wrote Overstrand,) and in North Repps: Richer had released it to Roger de Herleberge for 80 marks of silver; Roger was called to warrant it, and a duel, or combat of trial, was fought on this account between the said Roger, and a freeman of Simon, son of Hugh, in the behalf and right of Agnes, and after that they came to an agreement. (fn. 3) This Agnes was daughter and coheir of William de Reymes; the other daughter and coheir was Maud, and died without issue; William was son of Ralph, who was the son of Roger, the son of Richer de Reymes, who lived in the reign of King Stephen.
This family seems to be descended from Roger de Reymes, or Reynes, who came into England with the Conqueror, and had the honour and barony of Raines, Reynes, consisting of 10 knight's fees in Essex, given to him.
In the 3d of Edward I. Hugh de Reymes, as lord, claimed wreck at sea, and in the 19th of that King, sold lands here; about the same time, John de Reymes, and Agnes his wife, were living, and John his son; in the 33d of that King, Roger de Reymes, and Alice, his wife, settled in trust a moiety of this manor. After this, John de Reymes was lord, and John, son of John de Reymes, presented to this church, in 1355. (fn. 4) On May 4, 1383, administration was granted of all the goods, &c. of Sir John Reymes of Overstrand, and of Sir Roger his son, knights, who died intestate, to Bartholomew Reymes of the said town. (fn. 5) Sir John Reymes, Knt. (father of John) is said to have married Christian, daughter of — Jeckerson, Esq. and John married Margaret, daughter of Edmund Winter, of Berningham, Esq. John was brother to Sir Roger, (as I conceive,) and 2d son of Sir Roger.
In the 10th of Richard II. John Reymes, Esq. attended John of Gaunt Duke of Lancaster in his expedition into Spain, and had the King's letters of protection, and died in the 7th of Henry IV. In 1443, Roger Reymes, Esq. presented to this church, and William Reymes, Esq. in 1482, who is said to have married Emma, daughter of Robert Brampton of Brampton in Norfolk, Esq. and was father of Robert Reymes, Esq. who was lord, and presented in 1492; by his will, made in 1508, he requires to be buried in this church, mentions Oliver and John Reymes, his brothers, Jane Grave his sister, and Thomas Breton, his cousin; to Anne his wife, this manor, and advowson, &c. "To the intent that she find my son Francis at scole, and if he live to 21 years, he to have the said manor; if he dye before or after, without issue, then the manor to remayn to the said Anne, during her natural life." (fn. 6) By Anne his wife, he had Francis Reymes, Esq. who presented to this church in 1531; by his will, dated September 5, 1558, and proved March 15, 1559, he was buried in the said church; it appears that he had several sons, Will. Robert, Edw. &c appoints Elizabeth his wife, and his brother Bertram Calthorp, executors, and gives to his wife the manor of Overstrand for life; she was the daughter of Gregory Davy of Gunthorpe, in Norfolk, Gent. It is to be observed, that Bertram Calthorp, called brother by Franc. Reymes in his will, was the 15th child of Richard Calthorp, Esq. and Anne his wife, (relict of Richard Reymes, Esq. and mother of Francis,) daughter of Sir Edmund Hastings, and lies buried in Antingham church, as may be there seen; Bertram was a counsellor of the Middle-Temple in London.
William Reymes, Esq. son and heir of Francis, was lord in 1599, and 1606, and presented; he married Mary, daughter of — Payne, Gent. of Itteringham. In 1639, John Reymes, Esq. was lord and patron, living in 1662, and William Reymes, Esq. in 1670.
In a letter that I have seen of John Reymes, Esq. dated at Edgfield in Norfolk, September 27, 1660, to Edward Pepes, Esq. he complains that his eldest son being dead, and having sold part of the estate, and mortgaged it together, leaving a wife and 5 children to his care, had almost undone him. His son's name that died was William Reymes, Esq. who married Muriel, daughter of Martin Sidley, Esq. of Stalham, in Norfolk, in 1648; and in the year 1656, he brought his action against John Sidley, Esq. son and heir of Martin, and brother of Muriel, for moneys due by marriage contract to him, on the death of Martin; so that William Reymes, Esq. who presented in 1670, was probably grandson of John, and son and heir of William, by Muriel, his wife, who married Anne, daughter of — —
After this it was sold by — Reymes, Esq. to Thomas Baxter, (as it is said,) who gave it to his sister's son, — Bodham, and Bodham to his sister.
In 1714, Nathaniel Life was lord, and high sheriff of Norfolk, in 172-, he died in 1727, and left by Mary his wife, daughter and heir of Philip Vincent, Esq. of Marling ford, a son and 2 daughters. The patronage is in the lord of the manor.
The tenths were 2l. 15s. 8d. Deducted 15s. 4d.
The Church is a rectory, dedicated to St. Martin. In the reign of Edward I. Roger de Eccleburgh was patron, when the rector had a grange with 20 acres, valued at 10 marks and an half. Peter-pence 22d. The present valor, 2l. 1s. 4d. and is discharged.
In 1345, Richard de Shippeden instituted, presented by Jeffrey FitzAlan de Shippeden.
1349, Simon Cary. Ditto.
1355, Thomas Goodknape, by John, son of John Reymes.
In 1383, Robert Madesone, by Simon Blickling, citizen of Norwich.
In the last year of King Richard II. John Reymes aliened half an acre of land for a churchyard to bury the dead; and in the first year of Henry IV. a patent was granted to build thereon the parish church. This seems as if the old church had been swallowed up by the sea, otherwise the site of that and the old churchyard would have been sufficient for this little parish.
1432, William Dolle, by Sir Thomas Erpingham, Stephen Clerk, &c.
1443, John Wyttebury, by Roger Reymes.
1445, Richard Halyday. Ditto.
1482, William Crowmer, by William Reymes, Esq.
1483, James Willyams. Ditto.
1492, Thomas Garforth, a Cistercian monk, by Robert Reymes, Esq.
1508, Thomas Ward, by Anne, late wife of Robert Reymes, Esq.
1526, Robert Stone, by the Bishop, a lapse.
1531, Cuthbert Huddys, by Francis Reymes.
1546, John Shereborn, by Thomas Punder.
1568, William Harper, by Clement Comfort, Gen.
1577, William Fourd, by Clement Comfort, in right of Elizabeth his wife.
1580, Thomas Nabbs Ditto.
1599, John Money, by William Reymes, Gent. In 1603, he returned 44 communicants.
1606, Thomas Money. Ditto.
1639, Robert Springall, by John Reymes, Esq.
1641, Charles Warde. Ditto.
1662, Thomas Rule. Ditto.
1670 William Ashmore, by William Reymes, Gent.
1714, George Bearfoot, by Nathaniel Life, Esq.
1748, Samuel Johnson, by Cæsar Life, a minor.
In the chancel, on a marble gravestone,
Orate p. a'i'ab; Willi. Worde et Isabelle uxoris ejus, qui obt. 3 Julij, 1455.
In the body of the church, round a large stone on a rim of brass,
Joh'is Reymes armigeri - - - - - - Dni. Regis Henrici quarti et Marg'te filie Willi. Wynter - - - - - sepulti fuer. in ao. sept. Henry 4ti.
On the screen painted,
Orate p. a'i'ab; Johs. Amy et Agnetis uxor. sue, et p. quib; teneamur.
In the north isle,
Orate p. a'ia. Robti. Reymes qui. obijt 8. Julij, 1408.
Roger Rugge of this town was here buried in 1442, Thomas Rugge of North Reppes, his executor.
In the windows were the arms of Calthorp, impaling quarterly, Hastings and Foliot.—Reymes, sable, a chevron between three lions rampant, argent; crest, a plume of feathers, out of a coronet, or, impaling Winter; also of Felbrigg Le Gross, Mautby, Berney, Winter and Hetherset impaled; and in a window, Johs. Pelham miles fecit - fenestram - - - with these arms, azure, three pelicans, argent, vulned gules, the crest a peacock, proper.