An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 9. Originally published by W Miller, London, 1808.
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So called from its site by a river, and a watery place or Ham; thus Warham in Dorsetshire, Ware in Hertfordshire, &c
Walter Giffard had half a carucate of land, which belonged to two freeman, who held it in King Edward's reign, under Gert, when there was a borderer, and two carucates of land also, but at the survey a carucate and a half; valued as before at 16s. (fn. 1)
Gert was (as I take it) a younger son of the great Earl Godwine, brother to King Harold, slain with him at the battle of Hastings; and on his death, granted to Walter Giffard, created Earl of Buckingham, by the Conqueror.
In this town there were also resident 19 socmen, with 2 carucates of land, and the moiety of a mill belonging to the manor of Well, held by Ketel, before the Conquest, and by Aldit, at the survey, who was lord also of Well, (fn. 2) out of which Ketel had been ejected, (as I shall there observe,) wherein it was valued, &c.
How long Aldit enjoyed it does not appear; it is probable it came soon after to the said Walter Giffard, or his son Walter; Earl of Bucks, who dying s. p. Richard de Clare Earl of Hertford, &c. (descended from Rohais, sister and coheir of the said Walter, who married Richard Fitz Gilbert, alias De Clare) ancestor of the Earls of Hertford and Clare, &c. inherited the same in the reign of King Richard I.
In the 32d of Henry III. Richard de Clare Earl of Gloucester and Hertford granted to his brother, William de Clare, this lordship, with that of Wells, &c; and in the 35th of that King, the abbot of Fonteney, in Normandy, gave to William the advowson of the church of Wells; (fn. 3) he is said to be poisoned in the second of the said reign, and on his death, this united manor came to his brother Richard.
Gilbert Earl of Clare and Gloucester being slain at Bannocksburne in Scotland, in the 7th of Edward II. his inheritance was divided between his three sisters and coheirs; Margaret, the wife of Piers de Gaveston, (King Edward the Second's great favourite,) remarried to Hugh de Audley Earl of Gloucester; Alianore, the wife of Hugh le Despencer, junior; and Elizabeth, wife of John de Burgh, son and heir of Richard Earl of Ulster, in Ireland: and in 1328, William le Zouche Lord of Glamorgan, presented to the church of All-Saints in this town, as lord in right of Alianore his wife, late the wife of Hugh le Despencer, the younger; and in 1341, Hugh le Despencer Lord Glamorgon.
In 1389, Elizabeth, Lady Despencer, and in 1406
Thomas Lord Despencer, Earl of Gloucester, dying in the first of Henry IV. left Richard, his son, who departing this life without issue in 1414, Isabel, (fn. 4) his sister and heir, brought it to Richard Beauchamp Earl of Warwick.
Henry Beauchamp Duke of Warwick left it to his daughter and heir, Anne, who dying s. p. a minor, it came, in the 27th of Henry VI. to her aunt and heir, Anne, the wife of Richard Nevill Earl of Warwick, slain at Barnet field.
His inheritance being settled on his two daughters, Isabel and Anne, by parliament, Isabel, wife of George Duke of Clarence, and Anne, of Richard Duke of Gloucester, (afterwards King of England,) who possessed this; and on his death, King Henry VII. restored this lordship, &c. to Anne, the Countess Dowager of Warwick, who conveyed it, &c. to the said King, from whom it descended to King Henry VIII.
It afterwards was in the Howards family, and Thomas Howard Earl of Surry, in the second year of King James I. aliened it to Edmund Doyly, Esq. on April 2; from the Doylys it came to the Berneys, and so to the Turners: Sir John Turner, Bart. being the present lord.
Part of this town, and part of Wells, belonged to the King's manor of Wighton, who had one carucate of land in those towns, and there might be made up another, and this was valued, &c. in Wighton; see there.
The King had also in Warham half a carucate of land, an acre of meadow, valued at 2s. 6d. and this is said to belong to his manor of Holt. (fn. 5)
I take this to be that lordship which King Henry I. granted to Robert, son of Ernisius, whose son, Eudo, held it, and Robert Eudo's son rebelling against King John, he, by letters patents, dated September 15, in his 10th year, gave it to Geff. Fitz Piers Earl of Essex, with lands in Wells and Massingham, (fn. 6) &c. and in Hatfield-Peverel, and Depeden, in Essex, forfeited by the statute De terris Normannorum, whose sons Geff. and William de Magnavile, both Earls of Essex, by his first wife, inherited and held it by one fee, of the honour of Gloucester.
On their demise s. p. it came to John Fitz John, descended by a second wife, from the aforesaid Geff. Fitz Peter, who held it in the 4th of Edward I.
Richard Fitz John enjoyed it on his brother's death, being a baron of the realm, and granted it Ao. 6 of Edward I. to Sir Thomas de Weyland, and his estate being confiscated, &c. it came to the Crown, and remained till King Edward II. gave it to Sir Walter de Norwich in fee farm, paying 8 marks per ann. into the Exchequer, by deed dated at Windsor, November 22, Ao. 11.
King Edward III. gave the 8 marks aforesaid, to the priory of Brodholme, in Nottinghamshire: and in the 31st of that King, Sir John de Norwich had a release thereof from the prioress.
On the death of Sir John, it descended to Catharine Brews, a nun at Dertford, in Kent, who held it Ao. 1 of Richard II. and by her trustees it seems to have been conveyed some years after, to Sir Robert Knouls, William Calthorp, junior, &c. who held it in the 3d of Henry IV.
Thomas Stede, by his will dated December 20, 1501, bequeaths to Thomas his son and heir, the manor of Northale, and William his brother died lord, in 1540, and was buried, as was his father Thomas, at Warham.
The Doylys seem to inherit it from the Stedes, and quarter their arms, argent, a lion rampant, azure, and so is now united to the other manors of the Doylys; see the baronettage of England.
The Bishop of Norwich's lordship of Hindringham extended into this town, and being in the see at the survey, Thetford, the Bishop, held one tenant here, with 12 acres. (fn. 7)
Alan Earl of Richmond had also a lordship in this town, Wells, and Holkham, of which King Herold was possessed; and Ribald held it under Alan, consisting of 11 socmen, and 6 borderers, with 2 carucates of land, and one acre of meadow, valued at 40s. and Edvi, the King's steward, laid claim to one man with 30 acres of land, as the hundred testified. (fn. 8)
At the survey, Odo Bishop of Baieux in France, the Conqueror's half brother, had 2 socmen, with half a carucate of land, of which Stigand, Archbishop of Canterbury, who possessed it as a lay fee, and in his own right, had been deprived, and was valued at 30 pence; this on Odo's rebellion against King William II. came probably to the aforesaid Alan Earl of Richmond.
Ribald, who held under Alan Earl of Richmond, was his brother, and lord of Midleham in Yorkshire.
In the 18th of King John, a fine was levied between Bartholomew de Wighton and Robert Nugun, by which Robert conveyed to Bartholomew, the advowson of the church of St. Mary Magdalen in this town, and in the 24th of Henry III. Bartholomew, son of Walter de Wycton, sold lands here to William de Boton and Agnes his wife, and was then patron of the aforesaid church: and Peter de Laringsete, in the said year, is said to hold the moiety of a fee.
William Jordan of Laringsete settled by fine on William de Hales, and Catharine his wife, the manor of Warham, the moiety of Testerton, &c. in tail.
In the 9th of Edward III. and in the 20th, the said William was found to hold the 6th part of a fee, and the 20th part of one, of the Nevills, and of John de Vewtre, (of the Earls of Richmond, and of Arundel;) it is probable that the 20th part here mentioned was the part that Odo Bishop of Baieux held, and was now in the Earl of Arundel, and so of that King, which the family of De Wighton formerly held.
In the reign of Richard II. Sir Stephen de Hales held it, who dying s. p. Elizabeth, daughter and heir of his brother Thomas Hales, brought it by marriage to William Rokewode, sen. (fn. 9) and so to William Rokewode, Esq his son, by whose daughter and coheir Agnes, it came to Sir Nicholas Appleyard, whose descendant John Appleyard, Esq. in the 3d and 4th of Philip and Mary, passed this manor of WarhamHales, with many messuages and tofts, 2 water mills, 400 acres of land, 40 of pasture, 200 of moor, 200 of marsh, 20 of wood, 200 of heath, and 10s. rent, with a foldcourse in this town, Wells, &c. and the advowson of the church of Warham, to Ralph Symonds, Esq.
After this it was in the Doylys of Shotesham, and Henry Doyly, Esq. died lord in 1597, and Edmund Doyly, Esq. died possessed of the manor of Warham Hales, Warham North-hall, and Warham manors, in 1610.
Sir William Doyly, Bart. was lord in the reign of King Charles II. and alienated this with much of his patrimony.
Richard Berney, Esq. possessed it in the reign of King William III. and by a decree in Chancery, in 1709, it was ordered to be sold, and was purchased by Sir Charles Turner, grandson of Charles Turner, Gent. of Whissinget, who by Elizabeth, his wife, had Sir John Turner of Lynn, who died s. p. and William Turner, Gent. of North Elmham, father of Sir Charles, by Anne his wife, daughter of John Spooner of North Elmham.
Sir Charles married first, Anne, daughter of Robert Walpole, Esq. of Houghton, in Norfolk, (sister of Robert Earl of Orford,) and was created a baronet; his second wife was Mary, daughter of Sir William Blois of Grundesburgh, relict of Sir Nevill Catlyn of Kirby Cane, in Norfolk: he was member of parliament for Lynn, and a teller of the Exchequer, and on November 22, 1738, dying without heir male, was succeeded in estate by his brother, Sir John Turner, (fn. 10) Bart. collector of Lynn, who died 1739, and by his wife, daughter of—. Allen, of London left Sir John Turner, Bart, his son, the present lord of this town, member of parliament for Lynn.
On the heath belonging to this town, called the Rayfield, is a square fortification, with a double ditch, ascribed to be the work of the Danes, after their landing at Weyburn.
The temporalities of Norwich priory were in Warham All Saints, valued at 4s. 8d. those of Petreston, in Warham St. Mary's 4s. 8d. those of Walsingham, in the said parish 33s. 6d. Pentney priory's temporalities in Warham 4s. 8d. and the spiritualities of Bynham priory 5s. 6d.
The tenths were 8l.—Deducted 13s. 4d.
Here were 3 churches— All-Saints—St. Mary's— and St. Mary Magdalen.
All-Saints was valued at 15 marks, and paid Peter-pence 4d. ob.; it is a rectory, and the present valor is 16l. and is in the patronage of the King.
Rectors of All-Saints.
In 1312, Richard de Aston,
Somervill was instituted rector of All-Saints, on the presentation to Gilbert Earl of Gloucester.
1328, William de Welyngore, by William La Zouche, Lord of Glamorgan.
1341, Mr. William de Langele, by Hugh le Despencer, Lord Glamorgan.
1342, John de Hayton, by the attorney general of Hugh le Despencer, &c.
1389, John Peyt, by Elizabeth Lady Despencer.
1393, William Bacon, by ditto.
1406, Mr. Thomas Dallyng. Ditto.
Peter Forwardson occurs rector of All-Saints, about 1600: and William Wigfal in 1614.
1731, Joshua Thompson presented to All-Saints, on the resignation of John Wells, by the King.
1762, John Robinson. Ditto.
The ancient valor of St. Mary's was 5l. and Peter-pence 9d.; the present valor is 6l. 6s. 8d. and is a rectory.
In the 9th of Henry III. Ralph, prior of Pentney, granted by fine to Gilbert Earl of Clare, the advowson of this church, as long as the Earl and his heirs should hold the manor of Warham in demean, or in service, but if the heirs of Robert, son of Ernisius the Norman, should recover the advowson, the prior's right was saved, and saving likewise his old pension out of the said church.
In the 30th of Edward III. license was granted to appropriate it to the priory of Bromholm.
Rectors of St. Mary's.
In 1314, William de Pentbury was instituted rector.
1318, Jordan de Hyngham, presented by Sir Walter de Norwich. Alan, abbot of St. Stephen's de Fontany, in Normandy, released to Sir Walter, a messuage, 10 acres of land, and the advowson of this church. (fn. 11)
1329, Richard de Bernyngham, by Sir John de Norwich.
1330, Edmund Multon.
Thomas Ryvall, rector.
1358, Ralph de Fenton, by the priory of Bromholm, in Norfolk.
1373, Thomas de Saleby. Ditto.
1374, William de Baketon. Ditto.
1377, Andr. Goldsmith.
1396, William Hacket.
1404, John Newport, by the prior of Bromholm.
In 1474, William Rokewode, Esq. was buried in the north isle of this church.
1730, Joseph Ward, presented to St. Mary's, and St. Mary Magdalen, Warham, by Sir Charles Turner, on the death of Anthony Neach.
1736, Thomas Turner, on Ward's death, by ditto.
1749, Robert Goodwyn, by Sir John Turner, Bart.
The church of St. Mary Magdalen is also a rectory, valued at 5l. paid Peter-pence 6½d. and consolidated to that of St. Mary.
Rectors of St. Mary Magdalen.
In 1278, Hugh de Corpusti was instituted rector.
1289, Bartholomew de Wictone.
1307, John de Romeley, presented by Bartholomew de Wycthon.
1311, William de Warham. Ditto.
1343, John de Halle de Wyghton, by Peter Atte Mylle de Wyghton, and John, his son,
1349, William de Felton, by Sir John de Norwych.
In the 17th of Edward III. Sir John had license to grant the advowson to his college of Raveningham, and to appropriate it, but it took not effect.
1354, Hervey de Welham. Ditto.
1391, Thomas Merchaunt, by Sir Stephen de Hales.
1403, John Godwyne, by the Lady Joan, relict of Sir Stephen.
William Wig fall, about 1600, succeeded
Henry Feake, in this church.
In the register of Binham priory is an account sans date of the lands of Humphrey de Aula, in the fields of this town and Wighton, containing 120 acres, of which the rector of St. Mary Magdalen church was to have 2 sheafs, and the sacristan of the aforesaid priory the third. (fn. 12)
In this town was also a chapel, with its cemetery, or yard, which before the dissolution belonged to the nunnery of Bradholme, and being ruinous was granted June 11, in the 5th of Elizabeth, to Cecilia Pykerell, of Norwich, widow of John Pykerell, which she the day following conveyed to Nicholas Mynne, of Barsham, Esq.