A History of the County of Gloucester: Volume 11, Bisley and Longtree Hundreds. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1976.
This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.
MANORS AND OTHER ESTATES.
Of the numerous estates recorded in the parish in 1086 the manor of RODMARTON was represented by the estate of 2 hides owned by Gilbert, bishop of Lisieux, which Lewin had held in 1066; Gilbert's tenant was Hugh Maminot. (fn. 1) Hugh's daughter Alice married Ralph de Keynes whose descendants (fn. 2) were overlords of the estate in the 12th and 13th centuries. (fn. 3) In the later Middle Ages the overlordship passed with the manor of Somerford Keynes to the dukedom of York (fn. 4) and then presumably to the Crown. Nevertheless in 1629 the manor was said to have been held by knight service from Thomas Howard, late earl of Suffolk, as of the honor of Gloucester. (fn. 5)
In 1166 a knight's fee was held from Ralph de Keynes by Thurstan of Rodmarton (fn. 6) (fl. 1200), (fn. 7) whose son William (fn. 8) or a successor of the same name held the estate, assessed at ⅓ fee, in 1243. (fn. 9) William was dead by 1282 and had been succeeded by another William (fn. 10) who besides holding the manor, which from the late 13th century was assessed at ½ fee, (fn. 11) also held land in Rodmarton, assessed at 1/6 fee, from Tetbury manor. (fn. 12) William was dead by 1303 (fn. 13) and his property passed to the Burdon family. (fn. 14) John Burdon, named as lord of Rodmarton between 1313 and 1325, (fn. 15) was assessed for tax there in 1327 (fn. 16) and was living in 1339. (fn. 17) The estate had passed by 1346 to Roger Burdon (fn. 18) who was patron of the church in 1349. (fn. 19) By 1375 the lordship had passed to Henry Burdon (fn. 20) (fl. 1398). (fn. 21) The estate was evidently held later by Robert Burdon, for his widow Margaret and her husband Roger Capes (fn. 22) were granted a life-interest in the manor and advowson by William FitzWarin, presumably Robert's heir; (fn. 23) the grant was made between 1428, when William presented to the living, (fn. 24) and 1434 when Margaret and Roger presented. (fn. 25) William sold his reversionary right in 1440 to John Edwards, (fn. 26) a learned lawyer and M.P. for Gloucester in 1429, (fn. 27) who had evidently succeeded to the manor by 1446. (fn. 28) John (d. 1462) (fn. 29) was succeeded by his daughter Margaret, wife of Thomas Whittington of Over Lypiatt (d. 1491). Margaret retained the manor until her death c. 1496 (fn. 30) when it passed to her grandson Robert Wye. (fn. 31) After Robert's death in 1544 (fn. 32) his widow Joan, following a dispute with his son and heir Thomas, was assigned a life-interest in the manor. (fn. 33) Joan, who married Hugh Westwood of Chedworth, died in 1586 (fn. 34) and the manor reverted to Thomas Wye's widow Gillian (fn. 35) for life. Gillian had married John Throckmorton, who between 1591 and 1595 bought out the reversionary right of John Wye. (fn. 36) In 1596, after Thomas's great-niece and heir Elizabeth Wye had quitclaimed the manor to him, (fn. 37) Throckmorton sold it to Robert Coxe (fn. 38) who was lord in 1608. (fn. 39)
Robert, a London merchant, was dead by 1629 leaving his daughters as coheirs. (fn. 40) The descent of the manor is not clear but it passed to Walter Long of Whaddon (Wilts.), who in 1635 granted it to Robert Long, (fn. 41) his younger brother. After Robert's death in 1698 the manor apparently reverted to his nephew Sir Walter Long, Bt. (fn. 42) Walter died in 1710 leaving as his heir his nephew Calthorpe Parker (fn. 43) but in 1715 the manor was sold by Sir John Parker, Bt., to Charles Coxe, (fn. 44) a considerable landowner in the parish where he had acquired estates in Tarlton and had purchased Culkerton manor. (fn. 45) By his will Charles (d. 1728) devised Rodmarton manor to his grandson Charles (fn. 46) who was lord in 1746. (fn. 47) In 1793 Charles held the manor jointly with his son Charles Westley Coxe (fn. 48) of Kemble (d. 1806) (fn. 49) who was succeeded by his daughter Elizabeth Anne (d. 1865). In 1808 Elizabeth married Robert Gordon (d. 1864) and the estate was inherited by their daughter Anna who at her death in 1884 devised her property to Michael Biddulph (fn. 50) of Ledbury (Herefs.). (fn. 51) In 1894 Biddulph conveyed the manor to Claud William Biddulph, (fn. 52) his younger son, who was succeeded in 1954 by his son Maj. Anthony Biddulph (fn. 53) who owned c. 1,800 a. in the parish in 1974. (fn. 54)
The medieval manor-house, called Rodmarton Place in the 18th century, was built south-east of the church in the early 15th century, and with later additions of the 16th and 17th centuries occupied three sides of a quadrangle. An external staircase provided access to the great hall on the first floor; (fn. 55) the cellar underneath was apparently used as a prison. The house, which also included a chapel, (fn. 56) was the residence of Thomas Wye in 1544. (fn. 57) In the 18th century it fell partly into ruin and was used for storing grain (fn. 58) and in 1796 the lessee was ordered to demolish a large part of it. The building was still standing in 1872 when it was partly used for cottages (fn. 59) but they were rebuilt in the early 20th century. (fn. 60) In the late 19th century a farm-house, built c. 1870 at the west end of the village, was known as the Manor House. (fn. 61) Rodmarton Manor was built on a new site south of the village between 1909 and 1926 to the designs of Ernest Barnsley who, with his brother Sidney, supervised the craftsmen and selected most of the materials. The elevations use traditional Cotswold features but the plan and accommodation are those of an Edwardian country house. There is a main central range facing north and south, with a short chapel wing to the north-west and a longer but lower service range to the north-east. A workroom in the main block was intended for use by the villagers in practising traditional handicrafts. The interior features much exposed woodwork, especially in the library which occupies the centre of the south front. The furniture was made for the house by the Barnsleys and their associates, including Ernest Gimson and Peter Waals. (fn. 62)
An estate of 3 hides and 3 yardlands at HAZLETON was held by Elnoc in 1066. After the Conquest the manor was granted to Odo, bishop of Bayeux, from whom it was held by his vassal Roger for a rent of £16. The bishop granted the manor together with the farm to Roger (fn. 63) but by 1074 it had passed to Robert Doyley who granted the demesne tithes to St. George's chapel in Oxford castle. (fn. 64) The estate had passed to Robert's sworn brother-in-arms Roger d'Ivry by 1086. (fn. 65) It then descended with the honor of St. Valery (fn. 66) until c. 1140 when land at Hazleton, which had been confiscated from Reynold de St. Valery by King Stephen, was sold by John of St. John to Kingswood Abbey. About 1147 Reynold recovered his lands and expelled the monks. He eventually acknowledged their purchase on condition that they resided there but since they were troubled by a lack of water he moved them to Tetbury. (fn. 67) The abbey retained the estate together with Culkerton manor (fn. 68) until its dissolution in 1538. (fn. 69) In 1584 or 1585 the Crown apparently assigned Hazleton to Robert Milner, (fn. 70) who made a grant of the tithes in 1597. (fn. 71) The estate had reverted to the Crown by 1617 when it was granted with Kingswood manor to trustees for Charles, Prince of Wales, (fn. 72) who leased it in the same year to John Maunsell. (fn. 73) The freehold of the estate belonged to estate commissioners for the city of London from 1628 until 1639 when it was acquired by Sir Edward Bromfield (fn. 74) to whom John Maunsell, the son of the lessee of 1617, sold the remainder of his term. (fn. 75) In 1652 the estate was held in trust for Sir Edward's son-in-law, John Smith of North Nibley, (fn. 76) but by 1662 it had been acquired by Sir William Ducie, Bt., (fn. 77) later Viscount Downe (d. 1679). (fn. 78) Sir William's widow Frances was disputing the estate with his niece and heir Elizabeth and her husband Edward Moreton in 1681. (fn. 79) Hazleton probably passed to Frances with Frocester Court, which after her death in 1699 reverted to Elizabeth's son Matthew Ducie Moreton, (fn. 80) who held Hazleton in 1709. (fn. 81) The estate then descended with the Ducie property in Woodchester until 1826 (fn. 82) when it was sold by Thomas Reynolds Moreton, Lord Ducie, to William George of Rodmarton, whose family had held it on lease for several generations. (fn. 83) William was succeeded in 1832 by his nephew, William George of Cherington Park, (fn. 84) and Hazleton passed with Cherington manor until 1919 (fn. 85) when it was purchased by F. H. W. Fetherstonhaugh. He sold the estate in 1924 to Capt. Cecil Herbert who owned it until c. 1940. In 1944 it was bought by Robert GrantFerris, (fn. 86) M.P., who was knighted in 1969 (fn. 87) and was created a life peer as Lord Harvington in 1974.
A large complex of buildings of many dates occupies the site of the 12th-century monastic grange. The lower courses remain of a large barn, apparently built in 1290 (fn. 88) and burnt in 1885. (fn. 89) Near its north end there are three bays of a once-larger cruck-framed building, perhaps of late medieval date. The west wing of Hazleton Manor, which lies below the farm buildings, is probably of the 16th-century and formed a substantial part of the house at that time. It was converted to service uses after 1660 when a block was added to the east to provide a new set of principal rooms and to take advantage of the views up and down the valley. Further large extensions were made on the east early in the 20th century and the older part of the house was restored and some 17th-century panelling introduced.
Osward, one of the king's thegns, held in Rodmarton in 1066 an estate of 3 yardlands which he retained in 1086. (fn. 90) A small estate of 1 yardland in Rodmarton, including land at Little Tarlton, was granted c. 1220 by Ralph of Gloucester to Cirencester Abbey (fn. 91) which retained it until the Dissolution; the rent from it was paid to the master of the abbey's Lady Chapel. (fn. 92) In Rodmarton an estate of 4 yardlands, later called Chamberlains, was held in the early 13th century by William Chamberlain as a member of Woolford manor in Thornbury, (fn. 93) which was held from the earls of Gloucester as 1 knight's fee. (fn. 94) The Rodmarton land was assessed at 1/10 fee in the early 14th century. (fn. 95) On the division of the earldom in Edward II's reign, the fee was allotted to that part which eventually passed to the earls of Stafford, (fn. 96) from whom it was held in the early 15th century. (fn. 97) Land apparently held by Malmesbury Abbey subsequently passed to Kingswood Abbey which at the Dissolution paid a pension to Malmesbury. (fn. 98)
An estate of 2 hides and 2½ yardlands in Culkerton, that formed the nucleus of the later manor of CULKERTON, was held in 1066 by Grim. By 1086 it belonged to Durand of Gloucester, whose tenant was Roger d'Ivry. (fn. 99) The estate evidently passed to Durand's nephew Walter of Gloucester and then to Walter's son Miles of Gloucester, (fn. 100) who in 1137 granted the tithes of Culkerton to Llanthony Priory. (fn. 101) Miles, created earl of Hereford in 1141, died in 1143 and the overlordship of the estate passed with his manor of Haresfield to the de Bohuns. (fn. 102) In the late 12th century the estate was held by the family of de Mynors. (fn. 103) William de Mynors, who granted a tenement to the Knights Templar, (fn. 104) was succeeded by his son Henry (fn. 105) who was dead by 1217. His daughter and coheir Isabel de Longchamp later granted the estate, including 3½ yardlands and 8 acres, to St. Oswald's Priory, Gloucester, which sold it in 1231 to Kingswood Abbey. (fn. 106) The abbey had a quitclaim of the tithes and some land from Llanthony Priory in 1244, (fn. 107) and by various other grants Kingswood (fn. 108) came to hold the principal estate in Culkerton. (fn. 109) The manor, assessed at ¼ fee in the early 14th century (fn. 110) but later at ½ fee, (fn. 111) was held until the Dissolution by the abbey, when it also held land in Culkerton from Cirencester Abbey. (fn. 112)
In 1543 Culkerton manor was acquired from the Crown in exchange by George Monnox, alderman of London. After his death it eventually passed to Richard Monnox who was succeeded by his son Thomas in 1558. (fn. 113) Thomas sold the manor in 1564 to Robert Nicholas, (fn. 114) from whom it was purchased in 1567 by William Webb. (fn. 115) William was succeeded in 1585 by his son Sir William Webb of Motcombe (Dors.) (fn. 116) (d. 1627) who settled the manor for life in 1625 on his only daughter Rachel, wife of Sir John Crook. The reversionary right of Sir William's third son John (fn. 117) was apparently purchased by Crook, for in 1656 the estate was sold by John Crook, presumably Sir John's successor, to Henry Hene the younger, (fn. 118) later Sir Henry Hene, Bt., of Winkfield (Berks.). (fn. 119) A mortgage of the manor made by Henry in 1659 was assigned in 1669 to William Cherry of London (fn. 120) who had evidently secured the freehold by the early 18th century. (fn. 121) By c. 1710 the manor had been acquired by Charles Coxe, (fn. 122) later lord of Rodmarton manor. After his death in 1728 (fn. 123) the Culkerton estate passed to his son John, (fn. 124) who had conveyed it to his son Charles by 1753. (fn. 125) By 1793 Charles had granted it to his son Charles Westley Coxe (fn. 126) and in the 19th century it descended with Rodmarton as part of the Kemble estate. (fn. 127) Michael Biddulph, created Baron Biddulph in 1903, (fn. 128) retained the manor until c. 1920 (fn. 129) when it was acquired by the tenant Stanley Clark. (fn. 130) There is no evidence of an early manor-house but in 1793 the estate was farmed from the site south-east of the hamlet (fn. 131) where the 19th-century Manor Farm stood in 1974.
An estate of 1½ hide in Culkerton held by Aluric in 1066 belonged to Roger d'Ivry in 1086; his tenant was Anketil. (fn. 132) The estate passed with Roger's manor of Tetbury, from which land in Culkerton was held in the mid 13th century. (fn. 133) John de Breuse confirmed grants of land in Culkerton to Kingswood Abbey c. 1230 (fn. 134) and Peter de Breuse was granted free warren there in 1301. (fn. 135) The land granted to Kingswood Abbey remained distinct from its manor estate and was administered with Hazleton; in 1307 the abbey granted a rent of £10 held from Peter de Breuse in Culkerton and Hazleton to Gloucester Abbey. (fn. 136) The land eventually passed with Hazleton to the Ducies (fn. 137) who in the late 18th century owned 267 a. in Culkerton. (fn. 138) After inclosure in 1793 Lord Ducie's Culkerton land formed part of his Trull estate in Cherington, (fn. 139) with which it later descended. (fn. 140)
An estate called CULKERTON FARM and later Holt farm originated from land held in 1701 by Richard Kilmister in the right of his wife Elizabeth, the daughter and coheir of Edward Barnard. Richard was succeeded c. 1734 by his great-nephew John, (fn. 141) who also held a copyhold tenement of c. 209 a. on Culkerton manor in the early 1780s. (fn. 142) John was succeeded in 1785 by his son Richard Kilmister of Culkerton, (fn. 143) who was allotted land south-west of Culkerton at inclosure. (fn. 144) Richard died in 1816 (fn. 145) and his property, subject to the life-interest of his widow Hannah, was inherited by his daughters Ann (d. 1817), Martha (d. 1845), and Rachel. Rachel married Richard Kilmister of Cherington (fn. 146) who purchased the other two shares in 1846 and 1847. (fn. 147) Richard, who inherited the Trull estate, held Culkerton farm with 153 a. at his death in 1858. (fn. 148) It was conveyed in 1860 to his son Robert (fn. 149) who sold it in 1880 to Emily Kilmister, to whom he was indebted. Emily, who married Giovanni Dominico La Camera of Bournemouth (Hants.), sold the estate in 1886 to Thomas Lewis. (fn. 150) Thomas was succeeded before 1894 by another Thomas Lewis, presumably his son, who owned the estate in 1914. (fn. 151) Holt Farm, or the Holt, was built as a two-storey house in the 17th century and a third storey was added in the same century. The house, which was the residence of Richard Kilmister in 1793, (fn. 152) was enlarged in the 19th century.
A small estate of 1 yardland in Culkerton granted by William de Mynors to the Knights Templar was held from them in 1185 for a rent of 5s. (fn. 153) After the dissolution of the order the estate was treated as a member of Temple Guiting manor until the mid 14th century. (fn. 154) It was probably the yardland held in 1374 by Edith Constance from the overlord of Culkerton manor, (fn. 155) but its later descent has not been traced.
An estate of 3 yardlands and 5 a. in Culkerton that belonged to Scirewold in 1066 passed to Ralph de Limesi. By 1086 it was held by William of Eu, who also held an estate of 1 hide in Tarlton, which Leuric had held in 1066. William's tenant in both estates was Herbert. (fn. 156) The Culkerton holding apparently passed with the Tarlton estate, later called the manor of TARLTON, which included land at Haresdown towards Culkerton. (fn. 157) William of Eu was deprived in 1095 or 1096 for his part in the rebellion against William Rufus, and the estate was granted to Edward of Salisbury. Edward's son Walter gave it to the cathedral church of Salisbury in 1142 in recompense for the harm done to the church by his son William (fn. 158) and it later formed the endowment of a cathedral prebend, mentioned in 1226. (fn. 159) In 1535 the estate was still held in hand by the prebendary (fn. 160) but from the late 16th century the manor was leased to members of the Coxe family who occupied the demesne farm. Giles Coxe of Tarlton (fn. 161) (d. 1607) was apparently succeeded by his son Giles (d. 1642) (fn. 162) who held the estate in 1628. (fn. 163) In 1671 it was held by John Coxe (fn. 164) (d. 1693) (fn. 165) who was evidently succeeded by his son John Coxe, clerk, a younger brother of Charles Coxe (fn. 166) who purchased Rodmarton and Culkerton manors. (fn. 167) The younger John apparently conveyed his lease of Tarlton manor to Charles who was succeeded in it in 1728 by his son John, (fn. 168) after whose death in 1783 it passed with Rodmarton. (fn. 169) The freehold was bought from the Ecclesiastical Commissioners by Anna Gordon in 1867 (fn. 170) and was retained by Michael Biddulph at the beginning of the 20th century. (fn. 171) The estate, which in 1793 had comprised c. 600 a., (fn. 172) had been reduced by sales to c. 300 a. by 1965 (fn. 173) and having changed hands several times was purchased in 1968 by Maj. Anthony Biddulph, whose younger son Anthony Jasper owned it in 1974. (fn. 174) The ancient manorhouse, the home of the Coxes in the 17th century, (fn. 175) stood north of Tarlton chapel. (fn. 176) In the mid 19th century the manor court was held at the house although it was sub-let by the Gordons. (fn. 177) It was destroyed by fire in 1867 (fn. 178) and replaced by Manor Farm, built west of the chapel.
A large estate of 4½ hides in Tarlton held by Merlesweyn in 1066 had been granted to Ralph Paganel by 1086 when his tenant was one Ralph. (fn. 179) The descent of the estate is not clear but it evidently formed part of the manor known as Hullasey and Tarlton, (fn. 180) which lay mainly in Coates parish where it will be traced. A small unidentified estate of 1½ yardland in Longtree hundred, held by Ralph Paganel after the Conquest but relinquished by Ralph and his tenant Roger d'Ivry by 1086, (fn. 181) was possibly at Little Tarlton near Rodmarton. An estate of 2 plough-lands in Rodmarton and Tarlton, subsequently called Langleys, was held in the early 14th century by John Langley, the grandson of Geoffrey of Langley of Warwickshire. (fn. 182) It descended with the manor of Lower Siddington (fn. 183) and was apparently divided among the daughters of Edmund Langley (d. 1502). (fn. 184) Four yardlands of Langleys passed to William Wye (d. 1577) who was eventually succeeded by his daughter Elizabeth. (fn. 185) Elizabeth's husband, Sir Samuel Saltonstall, sold the land in 1606 to Sir Henry Winston of Standish, who was succeeded in 1609 by his son Giles. (fn. 186) Giles had sold the land to William Champernoune alias Slatter by 1619 (fn. 187) after which it has not been traced.