A History of the County of Hampshire: Volume 3. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1908.
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The civil parish of Warblington, governed by Warblington Urban District Council, extends over 3,254 acres and includes the ecclesiastical parishes of Warblington and Emsworth and a part of Rowland's Castle. The village, which lies on the main road from Southampton to Chichester, consists of a few houses clustered about the cross-roads, where one way curving round by the village pond leads northwards towards Eastleigh, and another, known as Pook Lane, (fn. 1) winds its way through the meadows to Langstone Harbour. Most of the southern part of the parish is well-watered pasture-land. Of the whole parish 663 acres are arable land, about 808 acres pasture-land, and 425 acres are covered with wood. (fn. 2) The streams served to work water-mills, one of which is mentioned as appurtenant to the manor in 1086, (fn. 3) while another stood in the tithing of 'Neutibrige.' At the east end of the village a lane leads southwards past the avenue leading to the rectory house, to the 'Castle,' a comparatively modern house with farm buildings, conspicuous only for the ruins of a tall sixteenth-century gateway. At the end of the lane stands the church with several fine yew trees in the churchyard, one to the south-east being a notable specimen, and across the graveyard there are glimpses of the channel between Hayling Island and the mainland. The soil here is chalky, but further north the subsoil is clay, the surface being a rich loam used mostly for pasture land, though some wheat is grown. The whole of the northern part of the parish is thickly wooded. Leigh Park, the residence of Sir Frederick Fitz Wygram, bart., is surrounded by oaks, larch and firs, and the woods stretch eastwards to Emsworth Common. It was probably from them that Herbert son of Matthew, then lord of Emsworth, sent forty oaks to provide pales for the bishop of Chichester's park in 1231. (fn. 4) Warblington Park was frequently mentioned with the manor towards the end of the fifteenth century, and was granted to Sir Richard Cotton with it in 1551. (fn. 5) It may have originated in the grant of free warren to Herbert son of Matthew in 1231, (fn. 6) and if, as was presumably the case, it surrounded the castle, it may possibly have been destroyed during the civil wars. The tithemap of the parish is in the custody of the rector.
WARBLINGTON MANOR was originally parcel of Westbourne in Sussex, which formed part of the possessions of Earl Godwin, (fn. 7) at whose death Warblington was probably inherited with its tithing of Newtimber by Earl Harold. (fn. 8) After the Conquest the manor was granted to Roger earl of Shrewsbury, who died in 1094. His English lands were inherited by his second son, Hugh, who was succeeded in 1098 by his elder brother, Robert of Bellême, on payment of a heavy fine. The latter forfeited them by his rebellion against Henry I, and Warblington was evidently granted to a member of the de Courci family, for William de Courci, dapifer to Henry II, was in possession of it in 1186. (fn. 9) His son Robert, preferring to retain his Norman lands, forfeited his claim to Warblington, (fn. 10) which thus became an escheat to King John, of whom it was held by his ardent supporter Matthew son of Herbert, sheriff of Sussex under John and Henry III, in exchange for lands which he had lost in Normandy. In February, 1230–1, Matthew's son Herbert was granted the manor for maintenance so long as he should remain in the king's service across the seas, (fn. 11) and in the following June the king entailed it on him and his heirs failing the restoration of the heirs of Robert de Courci, at the same time granting him free warren there. (fn. 12) Herbert son of Matthew evidently died without issue, for his brother, Peter son of Matthew, did homage for his lands in 1245, and was succeeded by a third brother, John son of Matthew, who paid relief for his inheritance in 1255. Presumably he was dead before July, 1269, at which date the tenants of various lands were summoned to answer to the custodian, Nicholas son of Martin, for 600 marks owing to William de Valence. (fn. 13) John's widow Margaret was holding Warblington in dower in October, 1287 (fn. 14) with remainder to Matthew son of John Ude, who quitclaimed his right to Henry III and Queen Eleanor, receiving in return a grant of the manor for life. (fn. 15) He died before 1309, (fn. 16) the reversion of the manor having already been granted for life to the king's yeoman, Robert Le Ewer, (fn. 17) who, after having steadily risen in the royal favour for some years, forfeited his estates by rebellion, and died in prison in 1324–5. (fn. 18)
In 1309 the reversion of the manor at Robert's death was granted to Ralph Monthermer, who had married Joan of Acres, sister of Edward II, and to Ralph's two sons Thomas and Edward, (fn. 19) the younger of whom, Edward, succeeded to Warblington accordto an agreement made after Robert Le Ewer's death. (fn. 20) His lands were seized by the king upon suspicion of his adherence to the earl of Kent, but were restored to him in December, 1330, (fn. 21) and his brother Thomas seems to have succeeded to them as his heir. (fn. 22) Margaret widow of Thomas Monthermer held Warblington in dower till her death in May, 1349, (fn. 23) when it was inherited by her daughter Margaret wife of Sir John Montagu, kt., who died in March, 1394–5, leaving a son and heir John, afterwards earl of Salisbury. (fn. 24) The latter forfeited his lands by reason of his resistance to Henry IV, (fn. 25) but Warblington was granted in March, 1400–1, to his young son Thomas, (fn. 26) who was restored to his father's honours in 1409. (fn. 27) His daughter Alice took the manor in marriage to Richard Nevill, father of the 'Kingmaker,' (fn. 28) after whose death in February, 1477–8, it was held by the latter's daughter Isabel, wife of George, duke of Clarence. (fn. 29) In June, 1478, the custody of the manor during her son's minority was given to Edmund Mille, groom of the king's chamber. (fn. 30) This son was the unfortunate Edward earl of Warwick, executed in November, 1499. In 1509 Sir Francis Cheyne was appointed steward of the manor, William and Stephen Cope being bailiff and parker, (fn. 31) and, in spite of a previous grant in tail male to William Arundel, lord of Maltravers and his wife Anne, (fn. 32) it was restored in 1514 to Margaret, countess of Salisbury, sister and heir of Edward earl of Warwick, with other lands. (fn. 33) She was living at the castle in 1526. (fn. 34) She was a staunch papist, and from her house her son-in-law, Lord Montagu, and others sent frequent messages to their friends on the continent, especially to Cardinal Pole, (fn. 35) using as an agent a certain Hugh Holland of Warblington, who had already been convicted of piracy. (fn. 36) After her attainder in consequence of her share in these conspiracies Warblington was granted temporarily to William earl of Southampton, and to Sir Thomas Wriothesley, the king's secretary. (fn. 37) In 1551 it was finally entailed on Sir Richard Cotton, kt., (fn. 38) whose son George succeeded to it at his death in 1556. (fn. 39) George Cotton was living at Warblington in 1596, (fn. 40) and died there in 1609–10, leaving a son and heir Sir Richard Cotton. (fn. 41) In 1635 a Richard Cotton died seised of the manor leaving a young grandson and heir of the same name who was a staunch Royalist. (fn. 42) In January, 1643–4, 'the strong house at Warblington' was captured by sixty soldiers and a hundred muskets, (fn. 43) and Richard Cotton was obliged to compound for his lands. (fn. 44) He is said to have bequeathed them to his only surviving son William, (fn. 45) who died in 1736. Under his will the manor passed to Thomas Panton, (fn. 46) who sold his life interest to Richard Barwell of Stansted. The latter also bought the reversion from Baroness Willoughby de Eresby, (fn. 47) and bequeathed the manor to trustees for sale. (fn. 48) It was purchased in 1825 by Messrs. Brown & Fenwick, and in 1875 was held by the trustees of John Fenwick. (fn. 49) In 1885 the manor was acquired by Messrs. H. G. Paine and Richard Brettell of Chertsey.
The lords of Warblington had both a court baron and a court leet, but have ceased to hold either. (fn. 50)
It was probably at George Cotton's manor-house, i.e. at Warblington Castle, that Queen Elizabeth stayed for two days during her progress through the southern counties in 1586. (fn. 51)
The 'strong house of Warblington' of Civil War days exists no longer, though whether by reason of damages then sustained does not appear. The only relic of its former importance is a tall octagonal turret of red brick and stone, once forming the angle of an entrance gateway, which must have been a fine building, dating from the early part of the sixteenth century. It was of four stories, and enough remains to show that it had square-headed mullioned windows, with arched heads to the lights. The present house, standing to the east of the gateway, is of no architectural interest.
The tithing of NEUTIBRIGE or NEWTIMBER is mentioned in the Domesday Survey. Land was held there before the Conquest by Earl Harold, and his tenant Sired continued to hold it of Earl Roger of Shrewsbury after 1066. (fn. 52) John Dake, parson of Warblington, made an unsuccessful attempt to claim land and rent in Newtimber and Hayling in 1249, when William of Newtimber was said to be holding the premises in villeinage of Adam de la More. (fn. 53) Subsequently William Falconer of Wade released land and rents there to John, parson of Warblington. (fn. 54) The successive lords of Wade were possessed of a moiety of Newtimber, (fn. 55) while in 1316 another moiety was held by Henry Romyn, (fn. 56) probably a descendant and successor of John son of John Romyn, who in 1272 conveyed a messuage, a mill, 2 virgates of land and 2 acres of wood to Adam de la More for life. (fn. 57)
EMSWORTH (Emeleworth and Emelesworth, xiii cent.; Empnesworth and Emmesworth, xiv cent.), situated at the head of the harbour to the east of Warblington, where the River Ems flows into the sea, is a small town of some importance, and has lately become a popular yachting station. It is a member of the port of Portsmouth, and as such, exports timber and flour and import coal. In the fourteenth century the trade in foreign wines was considerable, and smuggling was rife. (fn. 58) The fisheries are prosperous, chiefly owing to the success of the oyster-beds in the harbour. In 1340 the fishing and profits of the shore at Emsworth formed a valuable item in the revenues of Warblington Manor. (fn. 59) The lord of Warblington also had a weekly market and an annual fair in Emsworth, under a grant of Henry III in 1239. (fn. 60) The fair was held on the morrow of the Translation of St. Thomas (4 July). The town is a growing one, its prosperity being chiefly due to its situation at the head of the harbour and on the road from Portsmouth to Chichester. It has a station on the Portsmouth line of the London Brighton and South Coast Railway. The High Street is a wide open space from which the smaller streets run irregularly down to the various quays or to the 'Foreshore,' where men are always busy lading and unlading ships.
Emsworth was originally a tithing and hamlet of Warblington, and is not mentioned in the Domesday Survey, but when the manor of Warblington was in King John's hands as an escheat of Robert de Courci he granted 100s. rent from it to William Aguillon, and in 1230 Henry III confirmed to him the land late of Robert de Courci in Emsworth and Warblington for the yearly rent of a pair of gilt spurs, (fn. 61) the land being extended at four hides. (fn. 62) In 1280 Robert Aguillon, son and heir of William, (fn. 63) when summoned to show why he took amendment of the assize of bread and ale in Warblington, pleaded the custom of its former Norman tenants. (fn. 64) His widow Margaret received seisin of 100s. rent in 'the manor of Emsworth' in April, 1286, (fn. 65) and died before 29 July, 1292, leaving a daughter and heir Isabel wife of Hugh Bardolf, (fn. 66) who held the rents in Emsworth by right of his wife. (fn. 67) In 1304 she surrendered the 'manor of Emsworth' to the crown and obtained a fresh grant of it with remainder to her younger son William, (fn. 68) but in 1312 she sued Robert le Ewer, then lord of Warblington, and another for trespass, (fn. 69) and in the following year sought restitution of her lands in Emsworth and Warblington, (fn. 70) which had been seized into the king's hands on an inquisition as to her rights. It was then stated that the original grant to William Aguillon only referred to 100s. rent to be received from the reeve of Warblington manor, that when Peter son of Matthew was lord of the manor he assigned 100s. rent from certain villeins in Emsworth to Robert Aguillon, but Matthew son of John had through negligence allowed Robert Aguillon to usurp the lordship of the villeins and a fishery in Emsworth. (fn. 71) The suit dragged on for some years while Robert le Ewer received all the profits of the lands according to a grant of 1317, (fn. 72) and was only ended after his forfeiture of Warblington. In 1325 the king's bailiff held a court there (fn. 73) and in December of the same year the 'manor of Emsworth' was released to Thomas elder brother and heir of William Bardolf according to the grant of Edward I. (fn. 74) Thomas Bardolf's son John sold Emsworth with Greatham to Nicholas le Devenish in 1342. (fn. 75) It descended with that manor to the Faukoners who evidently retained it when they sold Greatham to John Freeland, (fn. 76) for a William Faukoner conveyed it to Anthony Browning, and Elizabeth Cotton, widow, in 1635. (fn. 77) Thus, apparently, it became the property of the Cottons, for it was included in the lands for which Richard Cotton compounded, and has since remained in the possession of the successive lords of Warblington.
The church of ST. THOMAS OF CANTERBURY, (fn. 78) WARBLINGTON, consists of chancel 45 ft. by 15 ft. 6 in., with north vestry and organ chamber, nave 41 ft. by 18 ft. 3 in., with north and south aisles and north porch, and a small tower between the nave and chancel. It is a building of unusual interest, not only on account of the beautiful Purbeck marble detail of the south arcade, but also because part of the tower is of pre-Conquest date. This latter is only 9 ft. square over all, and 4 ft. 6 in. square within the walls, and can hardly have been other than western. Only one stage of it now exists, the second; the ground stage having disappeared in the course of alterations noted below. It is not clear whether there was formerly a third stage, or whether it was rather a two-story porch than a tower. Nothing remains of the nave and chancel which stood to the east of it, but the width between the chancel arches may perhaps preserve that of the former nave, 13 ft. 6 in. In the early years of the thirteenth century a new nave with aisles was built to the west of the tower, the lower part of the tower being removed, to open up the old nave east of the tower, which now became the chancel of the enlarged church, but in the latter half of the same century, with its original chancel, was entirely pulled down, and its site occupied by a large new chancel with a north-east vestry. The aisles of the nave were either remodelled or rebuilt at this time, and perhaps lengthened eastward to the line of the east wall of the old tower. The tower, which probably had open archways on all four sides on the lower stage, has small arched doorways on the north, south, and west in the second stage, and these may have opened to the roof or upper floors of buildings set against the tower. The question is one which arises in connexion with many of the existing western towers of pre-Conquest date, and may in this instance have had some effect on the later alterations. The blocks of masonry abutting the arches under the tower may perhaps contain parts of the walling of such buildings, and the east responds of the thirteenth-century arcades may have been built against them, the eastern limit of the aisles being on this line. At the rebuilding of the whole of the work east of the tower, the aisles were lengthened to the line of the east wall of the tower, and perhaps widened, as there seems to be nothing in either as early as the arcades of the nave. The chancel, whose unusual length for a church of this scale may be accounted for by the fact of its having been built round the whole of the nave and chancel of the Saxon church, has an east window of three lights with modern tracery, but the rear arch is original. On the north-east of the chancel is the apparently contemporary vestry, formerly of two stories, and entered from the chancel by a plain chamfered door at the south-west. Immediately to the east of the door is a small squint, wide towards the chancel, and narrow towards the vestry, with a groove for a sliding panel, by which it could be closed, on the vestry side. The vestry has a twolight east window with modern tracery, but old rear arch, and an original lancet in the north wall. In the south jamb of the east window is a small trefoiled recess with a fourteenth-century canopy and pinnacles over it; the recess is rebated for a wooden door, and has holes for the fastening of bolts. Its original use can only be conjectured, and it is not certain that it is in situ, but it may be compared with other small and carefully secured recesses which may have held the church plate, or even the Host, as it seems that suspension, though the characteristic English method, was not exclusively practised. (fn. 79) West of the vestry is a modern organ chamber, and beyond it a length of original walling containing a window of two uncusped lights, with remains of tracery over the lights, indicating re-used material. In the south wall the first window from the east has two fifteenth-century cinquefoiled lights under a square head, but the rear arch is like the others in the chancel, with a wave-mould. Below it is a trefoiled piscina with a Purbeck marble bowl, and in the next bay to the west a lancet window with wave-mould rear arch, of the date of the chancel, but not in situ, having been moved here from a place in the north wall when the organ chamber was built. (fn. 80) West of it is a plain segmental-headed doorway with modern stonework in the head, and a window with a modern square head and two trefoiled lights, under an old rear arch. Under the tower are two arches, the space between them being covered by a pointed barrel vault. The eastern arch, which dates from the beginning of the fourteenth century, is of two chamfered orders with three engaged shafts in the jambs, having moulded capitals and bases; the springing of an earlier arch, wider, and of a different radius, and probably contemporary with the western arch, is to be seen on its eastern face.
The tower carried on these arches and the vault is now of three stages, its original ground stage having been cleared away in the early thirteenth-century alterations. The first stage now in existence has plain round-headed doorways on north and south of rough rubble with no wrought stone dressings, and on the west side a blocked doorway with thirteenth-century stonework, but round-headed, and probably representing a third pre-Conquest opening; the east wall is not pierced. This stage is the only remaining piece of pre-Conquest work, and its walls are 2 ft. 3 in. thick. On the west face of this stage, over the head of the west opening, is the line of a former roof, and the quoins of the western angles of the thirteenth-century work in the tower also appear, showing that the roof was that existing in the thirteenth century. The stage above is a thirteenth-century addition, with thinner walls and small lancet windows on north and south, their rear arches being semicircular, while the top stage, in which is the single bell, is an addition of c. 1830, replacing a wooden turret. It has double openings on each face, divided by a shaft of thirteenth-century style, and is crowned with a short shingled spire. The nave is of three bays, its eastern arch and south arcade being of the same detail, while the north arcade is of plainer work. Both have pointed arches of two chamfered orders, but while the north arcade has round stone columns and moulded capitals, the south has beautiful clustered columns of Purbeck marble, four round shafts with an octagonal central shaft, the moulded bases and foliate capitals being also of the same material. In the east respond the capitals are of stone and the outer shafts have stone bands, and in the chancel arch the same thing occurs. The responds in the north arcade are planned as for triple shafts, but have never had them. There is probably no great difference in date between the two arcades, a marked difference in design between practically contemporary works being very common in such cases; the south arcade and chancel arch may have been built first in this instance, the funds not sufficing to build the north arcade in the same elaborate and beautiful style.
The north aisle has a late thirteenth-century east window of two uncusped lights with a trefoiled circle in the head, and in the north wall two modern two-light windows. The west window is a single uncusped light, but its head is a piece of early fourteenth-century tracery—the lower part of a trefoiled opening, re-used here at some uncertain date. In the south-east of the aisle is a large late thirteenth-century trefoiled piscina with a projecting bowl, and below the first window on the north wall a tomb-recess probably of the fourteenth century, the back of which projects beyond the outer face of the wall. It contains the Purbeck marble effigy of a lady in a long gown and wimple, of very poor workmanship, and perhaps of late thirteenth-century date; and at the*** back of the recess is carved a soul carried by angels, probably contemporary with the recess, and later than the effigy. The north door of the aisle is of plain fifteenth-century work, under a very picturesque wooden porch of the same date, much patched with later work, but retaining a very good barge-board and framed wooden arch of entrance. In the south aisle the east window has three-light tracery c. 1370, but the rear arch is late thirteenth-century work, like that in the north aisle. Of the same date is the first window on the south side, of two uncusped lights with a pierced spandrel over, the other two windows in this wall being modern copies of it. Traces of the south doorway are visible in the middle bay of the aisle, below the modern window which has taken its place. The west window here is a plain lancet, perhaps of the date of the aisle. At the south-east of the aisle is a plain trefoiled piscina of late thirteenth-century date, and at the north-east a cinquefoiled fourteenth-century tomb-recess with corbels for images above it, and containing the very beautiful fourteenth-century effigy of a lady lying with her arms at her sides, the treatment of the hands and drapery being of quite unusual excellence.
The nave roof runs unbroken over the aisles, and is covered with red tiles, and has a brick coping at the west. The eaves of the aisles are low, and the side windows are set in gablets rising above their level.
The chancel roof is modern, and there are no ancient wood fittings. In the floor of the chancel are some fifteenth-century glazed tiles, showing among other devices two beasts back to back, eagles holding a shield of France, two embattled towers, fleurs-de-lis, &c. There are also two Purbeck marble coffin-lids with crosses in the chancel floor, and the matrix of a brass. At the east end of both aisles of the nave a large coffin-lid with a cross is set on the floor, but there are no monuments of interest beyond the tomb-recesses already described.
The first book of the registers contains baptisms 1631–1735, marriages 1644–1736, and burials 1647–1736. Up to 1660 it is a copy of older entries, whose originals are now lost. The second book runs from 1736 to 1760, the marriages stopping at 1754. The third has baptisms and burials 1760–87, and the fourth is the printed marriage register, 1754– 92. The fifth has baptisms and burials 1787–1808, the sixth marriages 1793–1812, and the seventh baptisms and burials 1809–12.
This was originally vested in the lords of the manor. It was granted in dower to Eleanor, widow of Matthew son of John in 1309. (fn. 81) John Helyar, rector in the time of Henry VIII, having forfeited his goods as a traitor, the crown presented for one turn. (fn. 82) Edward VI granted the advowson with the manor to Sir Richard Cotton, but apparently he parted with it soon afterwards, for in 1619 George Oglander presented. (fn. 83) In 1780 Anne Norris, widow, was patron, and the advowson still remains in her family, the present owner being the Rev. William Burrell Norris.
The church of St. James was built in 1840, (fn. 88) with a chancel, and nave with aisles and two octagonal west turrets. The chancel has since been rebuilt (1892). There is one bell.
Before the building of this church the district was served by the chapel of St. Peter, built in 1790. (fn. 89)
The following is the sole endowed charity of the parish:—Mrs. Jane Bellamy, by a codicil to her will, proved in 1892, left a legacy, invested in £102 0s. 10d. Consols, with the official trustees, income to be applied —subject to the repair of the donor's grave—in keeping the churchyard in order.