A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 7. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1912.
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PREESALL WITH HACKINSALL.
Pressouede, Dom. Bk.; Presoure, 1168; Pressore, 1176; Presho, 1199; Preshou, 1246; Presoude, Presehou, Presthowe, 1292.
Haccumeho, Hacunesho, 1199; Hacumesho, I 200; Hakinishal, 1244; Hakonesho, 1246. Hackensall is a common modern spelling.
The township is bounded by the River Wyre on the west, the Lune estuary on the north and a small brook on the south. In the north-west angle is the hamlet of Knott End, with a ferry across the Wyre to Fleetwood; to the south, on a stretch of higher land, is Hackinsall; while Preesall lies a mile to the east, on the side of another tract of higher land, and Pilling Lane occupies its north-east corner. (fn. 1) The surface to the north and east is flat and lies very low, much of it below the 25 ft. level, but the highest land in the township is about loo ft. above the sea. There is a wide expanse of sands to the north. The area in all measures 3,393 acres, (fn. 2) and there was a population of 1,423 in 1901.
Preesall is the central point of the township; from it roads spread out in various directions—south to Staynall and Stalmine, east towards Garstang and north-west to Knott End. From this last another road goes east along the coast to Pilling. There is a salt mine to the south-west of Preesall, and from it a railway runs down to the Wyre. The railway from Knott End to Pilling and Garstang was opened in 1908.
In Preesall is the cemetery for the chapelry.
The township is governed by an urban district council of twelve members.
The soil is various, with subsoil of clay and gravel. Wheat, oats and potatoes are grown. Of the land, 869 acres are arable, 1,648 in permanent grass and 20 in woods and plantations. (fn. 3)
A small detached part of Pilling was added to Preesall under the Divided Parishes Act of 1882.
There was a fairy well to the north of Preesall village.
In 1066 PREESALL was assessed as six plough-lands and was included in the Preston fee of Earl Tostig. (fn. 4) The demesne tithes were in 1094 granted to St. Martin of Sées by Roger of Poitou, (fn. 5) and later still, in 1168–9, Preesall was in the demesne of the honour of Lancaster. (fn. 6) About 1190 John Count of Mortain granted Preesall and Hackinsall to Geoffrey the Arbalaster or crossbowman, (fn. 7) and renewed the gift after he came to the throne. (fn. 8) It appears, however, that 4 oxgangs of land in the township had long before been held by serjeanty by Hugh de Hackinsall, whose son Robert obtained confirmations from John when Count of Mortain, and afterwards when king. (fn. 9) An agreement respecting the same was made between Geoffrey, as lord of the whole, and Peter de Hackinsall, (fn. 10) and, as Geoffrey's descendants assumed their surname from HACKINSALL, they no doubt obtained a surrender of the 4 oxgangs. (fn. 11)
Geoffrey the Arbalaster held the six plough-lands in 1212 by the service of two crossbows yearly. (fn. 12) His son John, (fn. 13) known as Arbalaster and de Hackinsall, in 1246 agreed with Eva, his father's widow, as to dower. (fn. 14) At the same time he claimed wreck of the sea at Hackinsall, but without good ground. (fn. 15) John died in 1262 holding six plough-lands in Hackinsall and Preesall as before, also three plough-lands in Hambleton; Geoffrey his son and heir was of full age. (fn. 16) John the son of Geoffrey succeeded before 1284, (fn. 17) and was himself followed about 1299 (fn. 18) by a brother Richard. (fn. 19) John the son of Richard de Hackinsall (fn. 20) had a son William, who was in 1335 to marry Alice daughter of John de Bradkirk. (fn. 21) William had a daughter Ismania, (fn. 22) whose daughter Joan married James Pickering, (fn. 23) and in 1402 James and Joan had a dispute with the Abbot of Cockersand respecting 900 acres of land in Preesall held by the abbot, a dispute renewed in 1437 by the plaintiff's son James Pickering. (fn. 24)
It was probably this James who died in 1479 in possession of the manor, but leaving four daughters as co-heirs—Margaret wife of Richard Boteler, Isabel wife of John Leyburne, Mabel wife of Thomas Acclamby and Joan wife of Nicholas Acclamby. Each of them had a fourth part of the manor, (fn. 25) but the descent is by no means clear, as the subdivisions are given differently at different times.
The Boteler share may be that held by the Butlers of Hackinsall. (fn. 26) William Butler died in 1586 holding a fourth part of the manor of Hackinsall, with messuages and lands in Hackinsall, Preesall, Poulton, Thistleton, Staynall and Elswick. (fn. 27) The heir was his grandson William, aged twenty-three, who died in 1613 holding a moiety of the manor of the king in socage, and leaving a son Henry to succeed him. (fn. 28) Henry's daughter Ellen carried the estate to William Fyfe of Wedacre. (fn. 29) Their daughter Catherine became heir, and marrying John Elletson, this part of the manor has descended to Mr. Henry Chandos Elletson of Parrox Hall. (fn. 30) He is said to hold a third part of the manor.
PARROX HALL is a low two-story H-shaped house with rough-cast and whitewashed walls and grey slated roofs, very much modernized, but still preserving some of its ancient features. The building itself offers no architectural evidence of a date earlier than the first half of the 17th century, but there have been so many alterations at different times that it is quite possible the structure may incorporate parts of an earlier building, though whether of date prior to the 16th century it is impossible to say. Any earlier building which may have stood on the same site was probably pulled down wholly or piecemeal at the time the present house was erected or came into being.
The principal front, which is about 75 ft. in length, is now north, but this is probably a later modification of the original design, the entrance having been most likely on the south side, now the garden front. The east or kitchen wing is over 60 ft. in length, but the west wing is very much shorter with only a slight projection north and south. The original plan appears to have been changed, perhaps more than once, and how far the modern work reproduces old features it is now impossible to say. An arched entrance at the south end of the east wing, if it represents in any way an older feature, suggests the entrance gateway to a courtyard on the south side of the house. (fn. 31)
The hall occupies the west end of the main wing and is 22 ft. 6 in. long by 16 ft. in width, with a stone fireplace at the east end. The entrance is in the middle of the north side by a door which appears to be an 18th-century insertion, and the staircase, which occupies a gabled bay in the angle formed by the main and west wings, leads from the north-west corner. The hall and screens may have originally occupied the whole of the middle wing, the eastern end of which is now occupied by the dining-room, but this is uncertain. A modern pointed doorway at the north-east corner, now disused but opening into a passage north of the dining-room between the hall and east wing, if it reproduces an original entrance, suggests the north doorway of the screens, but there is no other evidence that this was so. The hall however, may always have been its present size with a passage-way behind the fireplace as at Speke. The walls are wainscoted their full height with 17thcentury oak in diamond-shaped panels and the staircase has square newels and turned balusters. The floor is flagged diagonally, and the ceiling, which is 8 ft. 8 in. high, is of plain plaster crossed by two cased beams running its greater length. With the exception of four mullioned windows in the north front, a large one of six lights in the west wing and the others in the east wing, all the windows are modern sashes or casements, and externally the building has little or no architectural interest. The interior contains some good oak furniture, but more has been taken away, and in one of the bedrooms is a good oak mantel. There appears to have been a restoration in the 18th century, most of the internal oak panelled doors being apparently of that date, but except for the hall the interior has been almost wholly modernized.
It is not clear what became of the Leyburne share, but that of Thomas and Mabel Acclamby or Aglaby descended to their daughter Agnes, (fn. 32) whose son Thomas Booth succeeded in 1514, and was followed by his brother John Booth, D.D., Archdeacon of Hereford, (fn. 33) after whose death (fn. 34) there was much contention as to the inheritance, which had been augmented to a moiety of the manor. (fn. 35) William Mordaunt and Agnes his wife, who acquired it, were succeeded by William Twynehoe and Etheldreda his wife. (fn. 36) They sold to Edmund Fleetwood of Rossall in 1596, (fn. 37) and it descended to his son Paul in 1622.
The other Acclamby share seems to have been divided between two daughters, of whom one, Mabel, carried an eighth part of the manor to her husband, Reginald Preston, who in 1519 was succeeded by their son Thomas. (fn. 38) This portion was sold to Tunstall, (fn. 39) then to Starkie. (fn. 40) The other eighth part seems to have been held about 1555–68 by Thomas Bewley. (fn. 41)
In 1555 an agreement was made as to the partition of the manor between Sir Marmaduke Tunstall, Thomas Bewley, William Butler and William Mordaunt and Anne (Agnes) his wife. (fn. 42)
The fourth part of the manor held by Robert Dalton of Thurnham in 1578 resulted from the purchase of the Tunstall and Bewley shares (fn. 43); the tenure was not known. (fn. 44) This part was purchased by the above-named Paul Fleetwood in 1618. (fn. 45)
The three-fourths of the manor was in 1729 sold by Edward Fleetwood of Rossall to the executors of Edmund Hornby of Poulton, and to Robert Loxham, vicar of Poulton, in moieties, and in 1797 the former moiety was sold to James Bourne by Geoffrey Hornby the younger. (fn. 46)
In 1813 the manor was held by Daniel Elletson, James Bourne and Robert Loxham. (fn. 47) The second of these seems to have become the chief owner, and Hackinsall Hall descended to his brother Peter, who died in 1846, (fn. 48) and was succeeded by his son Sir James Bourne, bart. (fn. 49) Dying in 1882, he was followed by his son Sir James Dyson Bourne, who survived his father only a year, and the inheritance then passed to his sister Harriet Anne Dyson, who married Mr. James William Seaburne May of Liverpool. He took in 1897 the additional surname of Bourne, and Mrs. Bourne-May continues to own the estate, which is said to include two-thirds of the manor.
HACKINSALL HALL, now used as a farm-house,
is a large irregular two-story building of 17th-century date with mullioned and transomed windows,
but it retains few or none of its original architectural
features, having undergone a very thorough restoration
about the year 1873. The walls are entirely of
rough-cast, the roofs covered with blue slates, and the
mullioned windows throughout are modern. The
restoration, however, probably reproduces more or
less the original characteristics of the building, though
little of the actual structure but the masonry of the
walls remains. Built into a low gable on the south
side is a stone inscribed:—
GOD'S PROVIDENCE 1656
the initials being those of Richard and Anne Fleetwood, and the date probably that of the erection of the house.
'The famous boggart of Hackinsall Hall had the appearance of a huge horse, which was very industrious if treated with kindness; thus we hear that every night it was indulged with a fire, before which it was frequently seen reclining, and when deprived of this indulgence by neglect it expressed its anger by fearful outcries.' (fn. 50)
The Cockersand Abbey estate, chiefly in the LOWER END of Pilling, was in 1346 considered a third part of the vill. (fn. 51) After the Dissolution it seems to have been granted out in parcels. (fn. 52) Roger Dalton had some of it, which was sold in 1587 to Robert Bindloss of Borwick, (fn. 53) and he died in 1595 holding the Lower End of Pilling, but the tenure is not recorded. (fn. 54)
At the byrlaw or burley court of Robert Bindloss in 1590 various persons were fined for non-attendance, including John Smith of Stalmine Grange. It was ordered that the watercourses must be 'scoured and drawn' before St. Helen's Day, 'being the 3rd day of May.' Fines were ordered for foldbreak (breaking the lord's pinfold), rescues, bloodwick and hubbleshowe (affray), playing unlawful games, keeping unlawful fences and neglect to ring swine. Turf was not to be taken without the owner's leave; scolding women were to be punished by fine; and 'inmakes or bysiers' were not to be entertained by anyone in the lordship. (fn. 55)
Though it is Preesall which is named in Domesday Book, the manor in later times seems to have been known as Hackinsall j yet in the 16th century and later a manor of Preesall is separately mentioned usually in connexion with Hackinsall. (fn. 58) A family of Bradshaw of Preesall occurs. (fn. 59)
It would appear that Hereward Abbot of Cockersand (1216–35) undertook, in return for the gifts to his abbey, to find a fit monk to celebrate in the chapel of Hackinsall for the souls of King John, Geoffrey and Eva and others, but the chapel is not mentioned again. (fn. 60)
There are now two places of worship in the township. St. Oswald's was built in 1898 in connexion with the Church of England, and is a chapel of ease to Stalmine. Bethel Congregational Chapel was built in 1835 and enlarged in 1888. Services were first begun about 1830, owing to the efforts of the minister of Elswick, who described this district as 'destitute of the Gospel,' but 'ready to attend it if preached.' (fn. 61)
Two schools were founded in Preesall about 1700. (fn. 62)