An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 9. Originally published by W Miller, London, 1808.
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Was a beruite to the King's manor of Holt: 9 socmen had 20 acres of land in King Edward's time, and at the survey, with 2 carucates of land; and the 4th part of a mill belonged to it, valued at 10s. 8d. it was one leuca long, and half a one broad, and paid 8d. gelt. (fn. 1)
The family of de Vaux were early enfeoft of this manor, with that of Holt, &c. Sir John de Vaux claimed view of frank pledge, assise of bread and beer, &c. in the 14th of Edward I.
From this family it came to the Lords Ross, and the Nerfords, as in Holt.
Another lordship was at the survey in Walter Giffard Earl of Bucks, out of which Godric, a freeman, had been ejected; to it belonged 40 acres of land, 3 borderers, with one carucate, and the 3d part of a mill, also one socman with 10 acres, valued then at 10s. at the survey at 20s. (fn. 2)
This came from the Giffards to the Earls of Clare, by marriage of the heiress of Giffard.
Adam de Calthorp, John de Reppes, and Reginald de Bacun, held one fee of the Earl of Gloucester and Clare, in the beginning of King Henry the Third's reign; and in the 8th of Edward I. Alice, daughter of Richard de Bayfield, conveyed to Reginald de Reppes, son of John de Reppes, lands here, &c.
And in the 14th of Edward I. a fine was levied between Reginald de Reppes, querent, Walter de Melford and Alice de Reppes, deforcients, of 8 messuages and lands in this town, Holt, Sniterle, Glaunford, &c. with the advowson of the church of St. Margaret of Bayfield, conveyed to Alice and Walter, who regranted them to Reginald for life; she was probably mother of Reginald, and late wife of John de Reppes.
In the 11th of Edward II. Edmund de Newbourne and Alice his wife, conveyed the manor of Bayfield to Robert Hethe, by fine, probably in trust.
Alice de Reppes, and Walter de Calthorp, held here and in Huneworth, one fee of the Earl of Gloucester, in the 20th of Edward III. which Elizabeth de Calthorp and Reginald de Reppes formerly held.
Sir Bartholomew de Calthorp presented to this church as lord in 1346.
Edmund Newborne appears from a rental to be lord in the 46th of Edward III. and presented to the church in 1380, and in 1393.
John Yelverton of Bayfeld, and Elizabeth, widow of Robert Clere, presented in 1421: she appears to be lady of this manor in 1430, and held her first court then, in Bayfield-Hall; probably as her jointure, and relict of John Yelverton. (fn. 3) William Yelverton, who was after a judge, and her son, (as I conceive,) being also then present.
In the family of Yelverton it continued; and by an inquisition taken at Walsingham Parva, October 4, in the 30th of Elizabeth, William Yelverton was found to die seized of it August 12, in the 28th of that Queen, held of the honour of Clare, and Henry was his son and heir; and in 1634, Sir Henry Yelverton was lord, and presented to this church.
From the Yelvertons it came to the Jermys, and Robert Jermy, Esq. presented as lord in 1661; and John Jermy, Esq. was lord in 1693, when there was but few houses in the town. John Jermy, Esq. was lord in 1744.
The Bayfields are said to have an interest here in the time of Henry III. Sir Jeffrey de Bayfeld, Knt. bore sable, two bars wavy, ermine.
The Church is dedicated to St. Margaret, and was formerly valued with a portion of Peter le Curson, at 5l. 10s. Peter-pence, 5d
The present valor 4l. and is at present demolished, and pays no tenths, nor first fruits.
In 1331, and 1320, William de Calthorp occurs rector.
1346, William Hemme instituted, presented by Sir Bartholomew de Calthorp.
1349, Thomas de Blofield, by Thomas de Walcote, rector of Felbrigg.
Philip, rector, on his death.
Robert de Stodey. Ditto.
1359, John Brian, by ditto.
1380, John de Wrystelyngworth, by Edmund Newborne.
1390, Richard Welsey, by John Yelverton, of Bayfeld.
1421, John Colleson, by Elizabeth, widow of Robert Clere.
1455, William Fawkener, by Sir William Yelverton's trustees.
1511, Richard Lydwin.
1517, Robert Bokenham.
1528, John Bodenham.
1559, Humphrey Wilson, by William Yelverton.
1591, Paul Bushie, by Henry Yelverton, Esq.
1603 William Read, by William Yelverton, Esq.
1609, Laurence Hockenhull. Ditto.
1628, Thomas King, by the assigns of Sir John Yelverton.
1634, Thomas Tubbyn. Ditto.
Jos. Culloys, rector.
1661, John Bond, by Robert Jermy, Esq.
1662, Edward Worsley. Ditto.
1674, Nathaniel Palgrave. Ditto.
1705, Nathaniel Burrel, by Mary Cocksedge, widow.
1739, John Brown, by John Jermy, Esq.
1741, Francis Turner. Ditto.
1744, Edward White. Ditto.
William Jermy, Esq. son and heir of John, married, in 1735, Elizabeth, only sister and heir to William Lord Richardson, and she died s. p.
The tenths were 40s. deducted 13s. 4d.
The temporalities of Waburne priory 20s. 6d.
In the manor-house was the picture of a tortoise, and this inscription:
"This tortoise in 1685, was brought by Mr. Robert Swallow from Smyrna to Bayfield, and in July, 1686, given to John Jermy, Esq. It yearly, in November, went under ground, there laid and slept till the latter end of March. In May, she made a hole in the middle of a gravel walk, most open to the sun, and therein usually laid 9 eggs, but never produced any young, having no commerce with a male; she was found dead in the earth in April, 1743."