A History of the County of Wiltshire: Volume 11, Downton Hundred; Elstub and Everleigh Hundred. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1980.
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The ancient parish of East Knoyle, c. 5,786 a. (2,341 ha.), included the chapelry of Hindon, 228 a. (92 ha.). (fn. 1) The parish, on a north-east to south-west axis some 27 km. west of Salisbury and 6 km. ESE. of Mere, was rectangular, some 6 km. long and 4 km. wide. In the 19th century Hindon was a civil parish. (fn. 2) Its history is related below under its own heading. In 1885 the southern portion of Pertwood parish was added to East Knoyle which was thus enlarged to 2,398 ha. (5,926 a.). (fn. 3)
In two places the parish boundaries were straight. The western boundary with West Knoyle, described in a mid-10th-century charter, was made along a stream and an ancient ditch, (fn. 4) and the northern, with Pertwood ran along the top of a ridge. At the south end of the parish the boundaries with Sedgehill and Tisbury followed streams. The southeastern boundary across the grassland between Knoyle and Tisbury had been fixed by 984. (fn. 5) The boundaries enclose three types of classic Wiltshire scenery. (fn. 6) In the northern half of the parish chalk outcrops and there is the usual bare downland of ridges and dry valleys. The land slopes from west to east with the highest land over 213 m. near Willoughby Hedge in West Knoyle and over 205 m. on the north-western boundary with Kingston Deverill. An Upper Greensand ridge runs from north-east to south-west across the middle of the parish to include Cleeve hill, the twin peaks of Haddon hill, and Knoyle ridge, all over 213 m., and broadens to include Barn's (formerly Baldwin's) (fn. 7) and Windmill hills. The greensand is much eroded and the relief consequently hilly and complicated. Below it in the southern part of the parish Kimmeridge clay outcrops and the land is by comparison flat. Shaftesbury Lane marks a low watershed between the rivers Sem, flowing eastwards to the Nadder, and Lodden, flowing westwards to the Christchurch Stour. The spring line is at the junction of the greensand and clay and several small streams springing there drain the land which slopes gently southwards and to east and west, to 114 m. at Kinghay in the south-east corner of the parish and to below 91 m. in the south-west corner. Since its inclosure was completed in the mid 17th century (fn. 8) the land has been a patchwork of fields divided by hedges and ditches. (fn. 9)
Land-use in the Middle Ages was normal for such a parish lying across the geological outcrops: the arable was on the southern slopes of the chalk; the clay was predominantly pasture and, although no alluvium, there was presumably meadow land beside the streams; much of the greensand was pasture; and the northern chalk downs were extensive sheep pastures. Arable cultivation increased in the 17th and 18th centuries, (fn. 10) and by 1838 much of the down land and some of the clay had been tilled. (fn. 11) The chalk has remained under the plough but in 1977 the greensand and clay were predominantly pasture lands. There is no early record of extensive woodland in the parish. Knoyle answered at late-12thcentury forest eyres and in 1228 the land west of Shaftesbury Lane was defined as part of Selwood forest. It was disafforested in 1330. (fn. 12) There was a 'Westwood' in the parish in the Middle Ages but its location is not certain. (fn. 13) In 1773 only Knoyle ridge and an area south of the church were wooded, (fn. 14) both part of the demesne land of East Knoyle manor. (fn. 15) Woods were planted in Summerleaze in the 19th century, and by 1838 a number of small woods had been grown, presumably for sport, in the south part of the parish. (fn. 16) More trees were planted in Clouds House park in the late 19th century and the centre of the parish had a well-wooded appearance in 1977.
The Roman road from Badbury (Dors.) towards Bath may have crossed the parish but its course is not clear. (fn. 17) The main road from Warminster to Shaftesbury (Dors.) runs from north to south across the parish. The southern part was laid straight at the mid-17th-century inclosure when on each side of it many paths, some of which have become roads, were defined and confirmed. (fn. 18) That southern section, Shaftesbury Lane, was turnpiked under an Act of 1753. (fn. 19) The northern section leading to Warminster was turnpiked under an Act of 1765. (fn. 20) The downs in the northern part of the parish are crossed by two east-west roads which converge a little beyond the parish boundary at Willoughby Hedge, the southern from Barford St. Martin, Wilton, and Salisbury, the northern from Amesbury. It is unlikely that before the 18th century either had more than local prominence. They were turnpiked under Acts of 1761 and 1762. (fn. 21) The southern was afterwards well used by coaches at least as far as Hindon, but in the 20th century, especially since 1936, has been surpassed in importance by the northern which, more direct and passing through fewer villages than the road through Salisbury and Shaftesbury, has been made part of the main London-Exeter road and improved. (fn. 22)
Few archaeological discoveries have been made in the parish but a hill-fort on Two Mile down indicates prehistoric settlement. (fn. 23) Later settlement was nucleated in valleys on the greensand at East Knoyle, Upton, and Milton, and further south dispersed on the clay. Knoyle, near the junction of the greensand and clay, was so called in the 10th century. (fn. 24) Upton, called 'Childecnoel' in 1201 (fn. 25) and Upton in the mid 13 th century, (fn. 26) and Milton (Middleton), so called in the mid 13th century, (fn. 27) presumably originated as hamlets dependent on Knoyle and in 1285 Upton was thus described. (fn. 28) There had been settlement on the clay east of Shaftesbury Lane by the mid 13th century and there was more west of it after the mid-17th-century inclosure. (fn. 29) Only three farmsteads have been established on the chalk, two probably in the 18th century and the third in the mid 20th century. (fn. 30) Stone has been the predominant building material of the parish but from the late 18th century soft red bricks have been used, presumably those made at the brickyard which lay below Windmill hill near outcrops of both greensand and clay. (fn. 31) Taxation assessments of the early 14th century show the population of the parish to have been above average but not unusually dense. (fn. 32) There were 183 poll-tax payers in 1377, 146 in Knoyle and presumably Milton, and 37 in Upton. (fn. 33) The parish was apparently still of above average wealth in the 16th century, and in 1576 the second highest personal assessment in the county for the subsidy was of an East Knoyle man. (fn. 34) In 1801 the population was 853. It was over 1,000 from 1831 to 1871 but afterwards fell steadily. In 1841 East Knoyle had 541 inhabitants, Milton 358, and Upton 139. The population of the whole parish was 660 in 1931, 700 in 1971. (fn. 35)
East Knoyle has always been the largest village in the parish. It originated on higher ground west of the Warminster-Shaftesbury road where the chief messuage and demesne farmstead of East Knoyle manor and the church and rectory-house were built. The village did not develop on that site since most tenant farmsteads were established in the dependent villages. It grew in areas east of the church along the Warminster-Shaftesbury road, and west of the church at Holloway which was a settlement largely of customarily held cottages dependent on the rectory manor. (fn. 36) By the late 18th century the Warminster-Shaftesbury road had been built up on both sides for c. 800 m. from north of Knoyle House, around which it was forced to make a very sharp bend, past the Black Horse inn as far as the Benett (later Seymour) Arms, a 17th- or 18th-century building extended in the 19th century. (fn. 37) In the 19th and 20th centuries there has been ribbon development southwards along the road, especially on the east side. Holloway and the roadside settlement were not directly linked. A road led westwards from the Warminster-Shaftesbury road to the demesne farmstead which, west of the church, formed a rough square in which the road ended. Holloway was approached up a steep hill by a road leading northwards from the Warminster-Shaftesbury road and passing round the north of the church and farmstead. (fn. 38) That road was diverted to the south in 1804 when the rector enlarged the garden of his new house. (fn. 39) The demesne farmstead went out of use in the mid 19th century and in 1856 the road leading westwards from the Warminster-Shaftesbury road was extended through the farmstead to meet the southwards bulge of the diversion and thus lead to Holloway. (fn. 40) The tithe-barn near the church was demolished in 1868 and a barn opposite the church on the south side of the road was burned down in 1961. (fn. 41) A farm building possibly of the 17th century, also on the south side of the road, has been converted to a dwelling-house. The hall of the 14thcentury demesne farm-house, (fn. 42) on the north side of the road, was restored and became the parish room to which a larger room was added at the west end in 1908. (fn. 43) There are several 17th-century cottages near the centre of the village and at Holloway, and a few 18th-century cottages in various places. Slades House was built between Knoyle House and Clouds House before 1773 (fn. 44) and was rebuilt in the later 19th century. Knoyle House, so prominent in the middle of the village, was demolished in 1954 (fn. 45) leaving the village centre open. Few houses of architectural pretension remain in the village where in 1977 the buildings, most concentrated at the north end of Shaftesbury Lane, were mainly cottages, houses, and bungalows of the 19th and 20th centuries. By the late 18th century small settlements had established themselves north and south of Windmill hill at the Green, where there are two 17th-century cottages, and at Bath, later called Underhill. (fn. 46) That at the Green grew in the 19th century when the Fox and Hounds public house and a nonconformist chapel were opened, (fn. 47) and especially in the mid 20th century when some 25 council houses were built. That at Underhill has also grown in the 20th century and in 1977 the 20thcentury houses outnumbered the 19th-century cottages, many of which have been enlarged in the 20th century.
The farmsteads on the clay in the southern part of the parish include buildings which range in date from the 14th century to the 20th century. Settlement was apparently earlier east than it was west of Shaftesbury Lane. At least some of the eastern farmsteads, but except in one case not their present buildings, originated in the Middle Ages. (fn. 48) Between Blackhouse Farm and Coleman's Farm a number of cottages was built on the verge in the early 19th century. Settlement began west of the road after the mid-17th-century inclosure, (fn. 49) but Redhouse Farm is the only house built then to have survived. Most of the buildings on the farms were erected or replaced at various times in the 19th century. Little Leigh is a substantial farm-house west of Holloway on the borders of the greensand and clay. It was built on a three-room plan probably in the period 1600–25 and retains many of its original fittings. Since 1945 there have been additions at the north end.
Milton was a village of tenant farmsteads in a street running in an arc down the valley between Haddon and Barn's hills. The street makes an elbow below Clouds House. Its lower north-east end is more thickly populated than its north-west end. There are 17th-century stone farm-houses at both ends, and along the whole length of the street are many houses clearly of earlier origin than their earliest datable features which are generally derived from 18th- and 19th-century remodellings. The village includes a small stone house bearing the date 1734 and a mid-18th-century house of five bays at the north-east end, and an extensive range of now disused 19th-century farm buildings at the elbow of the street.
The smaller farmsteads of Upton village were strung along nearly 800 m. of a street between Upton Knoyle manor-house at the south end and Chapel Farm between Cleeve and Haddon hills at the north end. There were ponds in the street at the south end, where the road splits into two, and in the middle. Two wells are said to have been used for medicinal purposes. (fn. 50) The population of the village has never been great. (fn. 51) Since the late 19th century several buildings have been demolished and not replaced, and the population has presumably shrunk still further. Of the present buildings the two principal houses and between them Upton Farm, a 17th-century stone farm-house on a traditional three-room plan, were built before 1700. There is an 18th-century cottage towards the south end of the street but nearly every other building is of the 19th century.
Manors and other Estates.
In 1066 Aileva held East Knoyle. Later it was held by William FitzOsbern, earl of Hereford, and was presumably among the many English lands which William I granted to William for his part in the Conquest. (fn. 52) William FitzOsbern was succeeded by his son Roger de Breteuil in 1071. In 1075 Roger rebelled against William I and his lands were confiscated. (fn. 53) In 1086 East Knoyle was therefore the king's. (fn. 54) It was not afterwards mentioned among the lands of Roger's descendants, (fn. 55) and was possibly given by William II to Henry de Beaumont (d. 1119) after he was created earl of Warwick in 1088. The earldom passed to Henry's son Roger (d. 1153) and to Roger's son William (d. 1184). (fn. 56) Between 1174 and 1184 William sold the manor of KNOYLE to the see of Winchester. (fn. 57) After his death, however, his widow Maud claimed it from Bishop Ilchester as dower and at the will of Henry II it was assigned to her. To prevent it from passing at Maud's death to William's brother and heir Waleran, earl of Warwick, Bishop Lucy in 1200 claimed it from Waleran in the king's court. (fn. 58) In that year the bishop bought the reversion from the earl, (fn. 59) and by 1204 Maud had died. (fn. 60) The manor subsequently passed with the see and was not among the lands which Bishop Ponet was compelled to surrender to Edward VI in 1551. (fn. 61) In 1650 the trustees for the sale of bishops' lands sold it to the regicide Edmund Ludlow. (fn. 62) It had been restored by 1661 and again passed with the see. (fn. 63) Even after the land was sold (fn. 64) the lordship of the manor was retained by the Ecclesiastical Commissioners. (fn. 65)
From the 16th century copyholds of Knoyle manor, held under fines and for rents which were both fixed, began to assume the importance of freeholds. (fn. 66) Some were in Knoyle but most were in Milton. (fn. 67) None seems to have exceeded 100 a. (fn. 68) and their descents are not traced. In the 19th century most of such copyholds of inheritance were acquired by the Seymours. (fn. 69) The demesne lands of Knoyle manor and the right to receive the copyholders' rents, but not the right to hold courts, were leased to farmers until 1567 when Bishop Home granted a 79–year lease from 1592 to Elizabeth I. (fn. 70) Before 1592 the queen assigned the lease to Thomas Mompesson of Corton who in 1604 assigned it to Sir Edward Bellingham. (fn. 71) About 1610 it was acquired like the lease of the demesne lands of Fonthill Bishop manor by Henry Mervyn (knighted 1619). (fn. 72) It passed with that lease and the manor of Fonthill Gifford to the earls of Castlehaven and by sale to Francis Cottington, Lord Cottington, who went into exile in 1646. (fn. 73) The lease was sequestered and from 1647 held by Sir Roger Palmer who in 1650 assigned it to Edmund Ludlow. (fn. 74) In 1661 Charles II assigned the remainder of the lease of Elizabeth I to Henry Hyde (styled Viscount Cornbury from that year) (fn. 75) who surrendered and obtained a new lease for lives from Bishop Duppa. (fn. 76) Cornbury was lessee until 1673 when Bishop Morley leased to Francis Morley, possibly his son. (fn. 77) Leases for lives, renewed for substantial fines, passed in the Morley family of Droxford (Hants), (fn. 78) and after 1782 to a relative Charles Ingoldsby Paulet (d. 1843), marquess of Winchester. (fn. 79) After 1843 the lease was acquired by the sub-lessee Henry Seymour (d. 1849) and his wife Jane and in 1852 a new lease was made to Jane and her son Alfred Seymour. (fn. 80) In 1862 Seymour bought the reversion in fee of those leased demesne lands, c. 2,023 a. comprising mainly Manor (then part of Park), Sheephouse, Knoyle Down, Friar's Hayes, and Summerleaze farms. (fn. 81) In 1877 he sold, with his other lands in Knoyle west of the HindonShaftesbury road, (fn. 82) all but Sheephouse andSummerleaze farms which after his death in 1888 passed with Knoyle House and other lands east of that road to his daughter Jane Margaret (d. 1943). (fn. 83) They were sold in 1948. (fn. 84) In 1977 Summerleaze farm belonged to the Clouds estate trustees. (fn. 85) The old farm-house lies at the northern edge of a group of 19th- and 20th-century farm buildings. It was replaced c. 1900 by a large house standing a short distance to the west. In 1948 Sheephouse farm was bought by Maj. F. H. Crawshay Bailey and in 1977 belonged to Mr. Neil Rimmington as part of the Fonthill Abbey estate. (fn. 86) Friar's Hayes farm passed with the Clouds estate (fn. 87) until 1919. (fn. 88) In 1977 it belonged to Mr. R. E. Drake. (fn. 89) Park and Knoyle Down farms also passed with the Clouds estate and were sold in 1936 to John Granville Morrison (created Baron Margadale 1964) of Fonthill House. (fn. 90) In 1977 Knoyle Down farm still belonged to the Morrison estate. (fn. 91) Knoyle Down Farm is of the early 19th century and has 20th-century additions. Near it are early-19th-century farm buildings of brick. Park farm was sold in 1971 to the Clouds estate trustees, the owners in 1977. (fn. 92) Park Farm occupies the site of the former parish workhouse. (fn. 93) The farm-house was apparently built in the mid 19th century.
In the 14th century the bishop of Winchester's chief messuage in Knoyle had a chapel within its confines. (fn. 94) The house was presumably occupied by the farmers of the demesne and from 1592 by the sub-lessees. The hall of a 14th-century house survives as a parish room. A photograph of the house before 1908 and before its restoration shows it to have had an upper floor entered through the present window. In 1740 a house, presumably substantial, beside the Warminster-Shaftesbury road was held freely by William Seymour, son of Sir Edward Seymour (d. 1741). (fn. 95) After William's death in 1747 the house, later called Knoyle House, passed to his brother Francis (d. 1761) and to Francis's son Henry (d. 1805) and grandson Henry Seymour (d. 1849) who built up the Seymour estate in the parish. (fn. 96) It was the manor-house occupied by Alfred Seymour and belonged to his daughter Jane until 1943. (fn. 97) After 1888 its lessees included Richard de Aquila Grosvenor, Lord Stalbridge, in 1889 (fn. 98) and Beatrix, dowager countess of Pembroke (d. 1944), from 1914. (fn. 99) After the Second World War it was a home for elderly women. (fn. 100) It was demolished in 1954. (fn. 101) Photographs of the house show it to have been of various dates from the 17th to the 19th centuries. (fn. 102) In the later 19th century Alfred Seymour apparently planned to replace it by a new house on the site of the old Clouds House, (fn. 103) and drawings of a new house were made for him by Edward Blore. (fn. 104) The plan was abandoned presumably because of the financial difficulties which caused Seymour to sell the Clouds estate, (fn. 105) but the sale of the Clouds estate in 1877 made possible the reconstruction of Knoyle House in 1880. As rebuilt to designs of R. H. Carpenter and Benjamin Ingelow (fn. 106) the house extended some 60 m. along the south side of the Warminster-Shaftesbury road and had a garden front overlooking terraces to the south. It was raised a storey, a central hall and picture gallery were built on the site of an open courtyard, and a new staircase and a circular drawing-room were added. The style was mixed and the roof-line was broken by numerous gables and ornamental chimneys. (fn. 107)
Two other farms, New Leaze and Blackhouse, were part of the demesne of Knoyle manor and were held by leases from the bishops. (fn. 108) Blackhouse was sold to the tenant John Lambert in 1871. (fn. 109) At least from 1910 to 1947 it was like Lower Leigh farm part of the Pythouse estate. (fn. 110) Blackhouse Farm is an 18thcentury stone house. In 1892 the Ecclesiastical Commissioners sold New Leaze to James Lush. (fn. 111) In the 20th century it has had a succession of different owners. (fn. 112)
In the 19th century Milton farm, consisting largely of copyhold of inheritance land in Milton, (fn. 113) grew substantially. It passed with the Seymour estate until 1877 and with the Clouds estate until 1936 but by then had been broken up. (fn. 114)
In 1086 Gilbert of Breteuil held 1 hide in Knoyle. (fn. 115) Other of Gilbert's lands passed to a Robert of Breteuil, (fn. 116) but it is not clear what happened to his estate at Knoyle. In 1201 Stanley Abbey bought lands at 'Childecnoel' from Michael son of Reynold of Knoyle, possibly Gilbert's Domesday estate. (fn. 117) In 1204 the abbey sold to Godfrey de Lucy, bishop of Winchester. (fn. 118) In the same year Bishop Lucy gave the land, later called the manor of UPTON or Chapel farm, to the prior and convent of St. Swithun for his anniversary. (fn. 119) The Old Minster held the manor until 1284 when, as part of the composition of that year between the prior and the bishop, it was returned to the bishop. (fn. 120) Together with but separate from (fn. 121) Knoyle manor it subsequently passed with the see and, as in the case of Knoyle, the Ecclesiastical Commissioners retained the lordship of the manor after the land was sold. (fn. 122)
Like those of Knoyle manor the copyholds of inheritance of Upton manor, none of which had grown to considerable size by 1800, (fn. 123) were bought up by the Seymours in the 19th century. (fn. 124) The demesne lands of Upton manor, Chapel farm, and the right to receive the copyholders' rents were leased to farmers. (fn. 125) In the earlier 17th century they were leased to George Mervyn, and a George Mervyn held them until 1669. (fn. 126) Leases for lives for substantial fines were made to Robert Compton of Mere (from 1669), (fn. 127) Elizabeth Buck, the sister of Sir James Howe, Bt., of Berwick St. Leonard (from 1698), and Robert Lock (fl. c. 1730) and his widow Susanna (from 1738). (fn. 128) In 1754 a lease was made to Edmund Ashby who was succeeded by his son George (d. 1808), president of St. John's College, Cambridge, and by George's amanuensis Thomas Lyas. (fn. 129) In 1832 the lease was acquired by Henry Seymour whose son Alfred in 1862 bought the reversion in fee of the lands held by it. (fn. 130) Chapel farm thereafter passed like Park farm. (fn. 131) The oldest part of Chapel Farm is the short range three storeys high at its southern end which is probably of the later 16th century. It was extended to the west in the 17th century and to the north in the 18th century, when kitchens were built at ground level to replace those in the basement of the old house. A chapel, possibly built close to the house for a Mervyn, was mentioned in 1610. (fn. 132) It gave its name to the farm but no later reference to it is known.
In the early 13th century Osbert Baldwin held land assessed at 2 hides. (fn. 133) It was presumably the land in Upton which Thomas Baldwin held in the later 13th century and in 1306 sold to Walter Scudamore. (fn. 134) That land, later called the manor of UPTON KNOYLE, seems to have passed in the Scudamore family like the manor of Upton Scudamore. (fn. 135) In the later 14th century and the early 15th John Chitterne was apparently buying land in various places, possibly to settle on the marriage of his sister Agnes and William Milbourne, (fn. 136) and his purchases probably included Upton Knoyle of which he died seised. (fn. 137) The manor passed to the Milbournes and to their son Richard, grandson Simon, great-grandson Sir Thomas (d. c. 1492), (fn. 138) and great-great-grandson Henry (d. 1519) whose son Richard Milbourne died without issue in 1532. (fn. 139) The Milbournes' lands were then disputed by Henry's widow Margaret, formerly wife of Anthony Ernie and then wife of Roger Yorke, William Fauconer, grandson of Sir Thomas's sister Agnes, and Joan Brooke and Margaret Halswell, descendants of John Chitterne's sister Christine. (fn. 140) A Chancery decree of 1538 settled them on Margaret Yorke for life with remainder to Fauconer. (fn. 141) In 1539, however, those two settled Upton Knoyle on Richard Milbourne's widow Edith, wife of Edward Twinyhoe, for her life. (fn. 142) In 1544 Fauconer conveyed his interest to Robert Titherley, (fn. 143) husband of Margaret Yorke's daughter Elizabeth Ernie, (fn. 144) who apparently occupied the manor, (fn. 145) and in 1556 the Twinyhoes conveyed their interest to Robert. (fn. 146) In 1576 Robert's son William sold to John Mervyn of Pertwood. (fn. 147) The manor passed in the Mervyn family, apparently with Pertwood manor, to Thomas (d.s.p. 1622–3) and George, the sons of John Mervyn (d. 1601), and to George's son John (fl. 1670) who sold to his brother Richard (d. 1669), chancellor of Exeter cathedral. (fn. 148) Richard was succeeded by his sons George (d. c. 1680) and John of Bratton Clovelly (Devon), on whose marriage the manor was settled in 1690. John (d. 1729) had a son John (d. unmarried) but his heir was probably his grandnephew John who was presumably the John Mervyn who in 1750 sold the manor to Nicholas Williams. (fn. 149) The manor passed to Charles Williams (d. 1806) and to Charles's son William Mead alias Williams (d. c. 1814) and grandson Charles William Mead (d. 1826). Mead's heir was his son Charles who died a minor in 1829 leaving as heir his uncle James Charles Williams who immediately sold to Henry Seymour. (fn. 150) The land subsequently passed with Seymour's manor of Upton and became part of Chapel farm. (fn. 151) A substantial manor-house was built in the late 16th century, presumably for a Mervyn. It had a main range of two rooms with a short cross-wing at its north end and another, possibly service, range abutting the centre of the east side. The house, called Upton Manor, has been added to only in the mid 20th century when kitchens and bathrooms were built in the north-east angle.
In the early 13th century 14 virgates of Knoyle manor in East Knoyle and Milton were held freely. (fn. 152) Their descents cannot be traced but it was presumably from those lands that five freeholds which became substantial had emerged by the 16th century.
An estate in Milton occupied by John Cloud and later called the manor of CLOUDS was sold by John Stephens of Portsmouth in 1551, apparently to a trustee of Robert Goldsborough (d. 1581). (fn. 153) In 1577 Robert settled it on his son John (d. c. 1585). (fn. 154) John was succeeded by his son Robert (fl. 1610) and Robert's son Augustin who compounded in 1648. (fn. 155) In 1658 Augustin sold the estate to William Coker of Frampton (Dors.) who in 1672 sold it to Nathaniel Still (d. 1701). (fn. 156) It was gradually increased as it descended in the Still family to Nathaniel's son Robert (d. 1728), grandson James (d. 1803), and great-grandson James Charles Still (d.1828), whose executors sold it to Henry Seymour. (fn. 157) The estate passed with Seymour's land in East Knoyle and his two manors in Upton to his son Alfred. (fn. 158) When in 1876 the western part of the Seymour estate was offered for sale without Knoyle House prospective purchasers were invited to regard the land of Clouds, on which Seymour had apparently intended to build a new house for himself, as a new focus. (fn. 159) Seymour's lands mainly west of the Hindon-Shaftesbury road were bought in 1877 by the Hon. Percy Scawen Wyndham (d. 1911). (fn. 160) They included Park (formerly Manor), Knoyle Down, and Friar's Hayes farms, the manors of Upton and Upton Knoyle, (fn. 161) and the manor of Clouds, and were afterwards called the Clouds estate. They passed to Wyndham's son the Rt. Hon. George Wyndham (d. 1913) and to his grandsons Percy Lyulph Wyndham (d. 1914) and Guy Richard Charles Wyndham, who in 1919 and 1936 sold the estate which was largely broken up. (fn. 162) By 1977 a new Clouds estate, consisting of Clouds House and several farms in the parish, had been built up by Mr. S. E. Scammell and placed in the hands of trustees. (fn. 163) A new house was built on his estate by Robert Goldsborough (d. 1581). That was apparently replaced in the 18th or early 19th century by the small house with a garden front of three bays which was demolished in 1881. (fn. 164) A new Clouds House was designed for Percy Wyndham by Philip Webb, built near the site of its predecessor by the Gloucester firm of Estcourt, and completed in 1883 at a cost of £100,000. In 1889 a serious fire caused damage which cost £40,000 to repair. (fn. 165) Webb's design was in a distinctive style which incorporated elements from the 14th century to the 18th. (fn. 166) The main block, mostly of stone, was arranged round a central covered courtyard which acted as a hall and gave access by closed first-floor galleries to the bedrooms. The south elevation of six bays beneath three gables was symmetrical but the east and west elevations had irregularly placed square and canted bays. To the north a service range extended eastwards to meet lower brick outbuildings. North-west of the house near the Green an extensive walled kitchen-garden was laid out. In the early 20th century Arthur Balfour was a frequent visitor to the house. (fn. 167) In 1936 the house was sold to speculators who resold to Percy Houghton-Brown. (fn. 168) In 1938 it was 'georgianized' and greatly reduced in size by the removal of all but the basement of the service range, most of the bays on the east and west fronts, and the gables and tall chimneys of the roof. (fn. 169) A mezzanine floor was inserted into the northern part of the main block and the hall was partly filled in and redecorated in the Italian quattrocento style. The house was later used as a home by the Church of England Children's Society. In 1963 it was sold to the Clouds estate trustees, (fn. 170) and in 1977 was used as a school for some 50 maladjusted boys with a staff of eight teachers. (fn. 171)
From at least the early 13th century a freehold passed in the Sturge family. (fn. 172) Richard Sturge (d. 1504–5) presumably held it. His heir was his daughter Elizabeth, wife of John Horsey (d. 1531). (fn. 173) The Horseys held it in 1525. (fn. 174) They apparently settled their land in East Knoyle, LEIGH or Upper Leigh farm, on their younger son Jasper and in 1544 their elder son Sir John quitclaimed to Jasper. (fn. 175) In 1554–5 Jasper's son George sold the farm and his lands in Milton and Upton to Corpus Christi College, Oxford, whose president was then rector of East Knoyle. (fn. 176) In 1875 the college sold the estate to Alfred Seymour. (fn. 177) The lands in Milton and Upton were among Seymour's lands sold in 1877. (fn. 178) They passed with the Clouds estate and in 1977 most were parts respectively of Holden's and Chapel farms. (fn. 179) Upper Leigh farm passed with Knoyle House (fn. 180) and was sold in 1948 to W. H. Burton. In 1977 it belonged to Mr. E. H. Burton. (fn. 181) Upper Leigh Farm contains a long range probably built in two stages in the 17th century. A stair turret was built in the second stage during which some of the upper rooms were heightened. A new parlour wing was added beyond the stairs in 1891. (fn. 182) North-west of the house the farm buildings include a timber-framed granary on staddle-stones and a medieval barn with buttressed stone walls and a cruck-framed roof of five bays. (fn. 183)
A freehold in the south-east corner of the parish later called LOWER LEIGH farm belonged in 1535 to the chantry of Compton Pauncefoot (Som.). (fn. 184) It passed to the Crown at the Dissolution and in 1545 was granted to John Whitehorn and John Bailey who immediately granted it to William Hunton (d. c. 1581). (fn. 185) The land passed to Hunton's son Thomas (d. 1631) and to Thomas's son James (fl. 1639). (fn. 186) Its later descent is not clear. It was possibly the land, sequestered from Francis Toope in 1645, which was bought from the Treason Trustees by Matthew Davies in 1653. That land was being claimed in 1653 by Toope, Davies, and Robert Moore who claimed to be Toope's mortgagee. (fn. 187) The result of those claims and the subsequent descent of Lower Leigh are unknown. In 1750 the farm belonged to Richard Jackson, rector of Donhead St. Mary, after whose death in 1796 it passed to his successor at Donhead Gilbert Jackson (d. 1816). (fn. 188) It was held by Gilbert's widow until c. 1822 and then passed, presumably by sale, to George Fort of Alderbury. (fn. 189) About 1870 Vere Fane-Benett-Stanford of Pythouse in Tisbury acquired the land which passed like Pythouse to his son John Montagu Fane-Benett-Stanford (d. 1947). (fn. 190) In 1977 Lower Leigh farm belonged to Cdr. J. M. Child. (fn. 191) Lower Leigh Farm, formerly the farm-house of an adjacent copyhold, (fn. 192) is a house of 18th-century origin with additions, including a new west front of c. 1840, of several dates in the 19th century.
In the early 13th century John Coleman held 2 virgates freely. (fn. 193) In 1412 his land belonged to Sir Walter Hungerford. (fn. 194) It passed like the manor of Rushall until 1474 when COLEMAN'S was settled on Margaret, Baroness Botreaux (d. 1478). (fn. 195) The descent of the land is afterwards obscure. It belonged to Nicholas Bacon (fl. 1591) and was held by his widow Elizabeth until her death c. 1609. Elizabeth's heir was her daughter Joan, wife of William Noyes. (fn. 196) She died seised in 1622 when the land passed to her son William who presumably sold it. (fn. 197) In 1636 Christopher Benett died seised. (fn. 198) He had a son Thomas but the descent of Coleman's is again not clear. In the mid 18th century it belonged to William Coles (d. 1784) and passed with Moot farm in Downton until 1796 when Henry Spencer bought out the interests of John Greene and the Revd. Charles William Shuckburgh. (fn. 199) About 1810 the land passed, presumably by sale, to Peter, brother of James Still of Clouds. (fn. 200) It was acquired by Henry Seymour c. 1828, (fn. 201) and passed with Knoyle House to his son Alfred who in 1876 conveyed it to Vere FaneBenett-Stanford in an exchange of lands. (fn. 202) It was added to and until 1947 remained part of Lower Leigh farm. (fn. 203)
In 1734 REDHOUSE farm was bought from a Mr. Coward by Wilton Free School. The school held it until 1880 when it was sold, (fn. 204) apparently to Alfred Seymour. It passed with Knoyle House until 1948. (fn. 205) By 1977 it had been broken up. (fn. 206) Redhouse Farm is a 17th-century house.
The existence of field systems on Two Mile down and near Hindon indicates early ploughing on the downs. (fn. 207) The northern half of East Knoyle, however, was part of the Wiltshire chalk country where sheep-and-corn husbandry predominated from at least the Middle Ages until the 19th century. In that period the northernmost of the downs in the parish were mainly pasture, and the arable lay on the chalk nearer the villages. The southern part of the parish, Knoyle common, was part of the small Wiltshire butter country. It was apparently pasture in 984 and has since remained largely so. (fn. 208)
In 1086 Knoyle was assessed at 30 hides. The king's demesne, on which there were 5 ploughs and 10 serfs, was reckoned 17½ hides; Gilbert of Breteuil's hide was worth 7s. 6d. and had on it 3 bordars; and the remaining hides were held by 16 villeins, 10 bordars, and 18 coscez who shared 10 ploughs. Those figures possibly show a large demesne farm already relying on the tenants for its cultivation. The whole estate had been worth £28 and was then worth £30. There were 15 a. of meadow, pasture 1 league long and ½ league wide, and woodland ½ league square. (fn. 209) The Domesday figures presumably refer to the whole ancient parish in which in the early 13th century there were the bishop of Winchester's demesne lands, 2 hides, 14 virgates, and some smallholdings held freely, 16 virgates, 16 ½-virgates, and various smallholdings held customarily, and the manor of Upton. (fn. 210)
In the 12th century, when cultivation at East Knoyle was presumably expanding, the manor was passing from royal to episcopal through noble possession and the hand of lordship was possibly light. (fn. 211) That may have resulted in the three significant features of the parish's agrarian history. There emerged in the parish before 1300 four separate systems of common fields and pastures, those of Knoyle, Hindon, Upton, and Milton. (fn. 212) Hindon is dealt with elsewhere. (fn. 213) The several agrarian units, each with its own rules of common husbandry, presumably developed as more land was used and boundaries between the villages' lands were defined. Its large amount of land held freely also made Knoyle remarkable among the bishop of Winchester's manors. (fn. 214) The 12th century is a likely time for the freeholds to have been created and may also have been the time when a few farms established themselves on Knoyle common. The farms, later called Upper Leigh, Lower Leigh, and Coleman's, were apparently there before 1250. (fn. 215) Their tenure of Knoyle manor was perhaps no more than a mark of dependence made for licence to inclose and build on the common. The definition of each village's lands which took place in the northern half of the parish was, however, not mirrored in the southern half, and Knoyle was remarkable thirdly for the fact that intercommoning among the men of the three villages continued on the common until the mid 17th century. The remainder of this section deals in turn with agriculture in each of the three townships and afterwards with the common.
The township of Knoyle contained the bishop of Winchester's demesne lands and some free and customary holdings. In 1208–9 some 360 a. were sown for the bishop. That was an average figure for the period 1209–80 when the area sown was only occasionally over 500 a. or under 300 a. (fn. 216) From those figures it is clear that most of the chalkland on the east side of the parish was then episcopal demesne. Less land was sown for the bishops after 1280 but never fewer than 200 a. before 1349; (fn. 217) in 1377–8 196 a. were sown. (fn. 218) If fully used labour services from the sixteen virgaters and seventeen ½-virgaters, who all held by Borough English, were almost certainly sufficient for the entire cultivation of the demesne. (fn. 219) The downs in the northern part made East Knoyle one of the bishops' most important sheep farms. The men of Upton and Milton had correspondingly small sheep pastures. (fn. 220) More than 1,000 sheep were kept in 1208 and numbers over 2,000 were not uncommon in the 13th and occasional in the 14th century, totals well above average for the episcopal estate. (fn. 221) At the same time dairy farming on the lowland was also important. (fn. 222)
In 1405 the demesne, including large areas of upland and lowland pasture and some 200 a. of arable land, was leased with the rents, but not the fines, of the tenants for £80 a year. (fn. 223) It had been taken back in hand by 1438 but leased again by 1451. (fn. 224) There is no evidence for the Middle Ages or later that the demesne lands on the chalk were commonable. From at least 1512 to 1581 Richard and William Hunton were farmers. (fn. 225) In the early 17th century the demesne was sub-let to Robert Toope. (fn. 226) By 1650 it had been split into four main farms: (fn. 227) the principal farmstead with c. 90 a. of pasture, 200 a. of arable land, and a large area of down, all later called Manor farm, Friar's Hayes and Summerleaze farms, (fn. 228) and the down, at the north end of the parish, which had been for wethers and was later called Knoyle Down farm. Later Sheephouse farm was established on the down of Manor farm. In 1782 Manor farm measured 170 a., including 88 a. of woodland, Sheephouse 761 a., half arable and half pasture, and Knoyle Down 467 a., presumably partly arable. (fn. 229) In the early 19th century Manor farm, which until then had been worked from buildings beside the church, was merged with Clouds farm (see below) and worked from the buildings near Clouds and Slades Houses. (fn. 230) The buildings near the church were afterwards given up. (fn. 231) After 1838 Sheephouse farm was split between Manor and Knoyle Down farms, respectively 448 a. and 834 a. in 1852. (fn. 232) By 1876 a new farmstead on the workhouse site had been erected for Manor farm which was renamed Park. (fn. 233) After 1876 Sheephouse again became a farm, 139 a. in 1940. (fn. 234) In 1977 Park was a mixed farm of c. 450 a., Knoyle Down a largely arable farm of c. 700 a., and Sheephouse a farm of c. 150 a. (fn. 235)
It is not clear how many of the bishop's free and customary tenants held in Knoyle township in the early 13th century. Several holdings had been taken into demesne, (fn. 236) but some presumably passed back to tenants in the later Middle Ages. In 1513 rents from customary tenants in Knoyle were £19 18s. 8d., from free tenants £5 17s., (fn. 237) and in the early 17th century there were eleven freeholders and thirteen copyholders in the tithing. (fn. 238) All those totals included holdings on Knoyle common. (fn. 239) Holdings on the chalk and greensand near the village seem to have been very small. In 1662 and 1736 the east, north, and west fields of Knoyle were mentioned. (fn. 240) Their location is not certain but they probably lay near East Knoyle village on the chalk west of the road to Hindon. (fn. 241) In 1780, when Henry Seymour apparently held most among seven tenants, they were inclosed by private agreement. (fn. 242) The land was part of several small farms in 1838, (fn. 243) and has since been taken mainly into Park farm. The tenants' common pastures for sheep and cattle, Windmill hill, Knoyle hill, and Shaftesbury Lane, were not inclosed in 1780. (fn. 244) The wide verge formerly on the east side of Shaftesbury Lane was built on in the 19th century, but Knoyle hill, 8 a., and Windmill hill, 34 a., remained common. In 1955 the Church Commissioners conveyed the lord of the manor's rights in the lands to the parish council. (fn. 245)
The township of Milton contained the lands of the rector and of customary and free tenants of Knoyle manor. Its fields were clearly worked in common in the later 13th century. (fn. 246) Later evidence shows them to have been on the chalk north and north-east of the village, over 400 a. (fn. 247) In 1671 there were three fields. (fn. 248) The common pastures were on Haddon hill and on downland near the road from Willoughby Hedge to Barford St. Martin. There was probably no boundary between those pastures and those of the men of Upton in the same places. (fn. 249) In the 16th century and later the rector and two of the principal freeholders had several downs, (fn. 250) but it is not clear when those downs were separated from the down of the customary tenants and small freeholders which remained common. The lands around Barn's hill were inclosed pastures. (fn. 251) In 1705 the rector held 73 a. in the fields and 30 a. of down, (fn. 252) in 1750 Corpus Christi College held 50 a. in the fields, 10 a. of inclosed pasture, and 18 a. of down. (fn. 253) In 1513 rents from customary tenants totalled £8 9s., those from free tenants 1 mark; (fn. 254) there were five freeholders and thirteen copyholders in the early 17th century when the amount of land held by each class probably corresponded roughly to their numbers. (fn. 255) In 1558 those tenants assigned their common down, 30 a., to the farmer of the demesne of East Knoyle manor who exchanged it with the lessee of the parsonage for the rector's down. Despite requests to the farmer and rector and legal action they had not recovered it by 1594 but presumably did so later. (fn. 256)
In 1799 the common fields were inclosed by Act under a joint award with Upton. (fn. 257) Only four farms, including the rector's and Corpus Christi's, were allotted more than 50 a. of arable. The Clouds estate then seems to have consisted of inclosed pastures on Barn's hill, arable allotments totalling some 47 a., and feeding for 148 sheep. The remaining land was shared among some twelve smaller farms presumably with farmsteads in Milton street. The pastures on Haddon hill, 28 a., and the down, 21 a., were distinguished from those of Upton but remained commonable. They and the Upton part of Haddon hill were for a total of 1,145 sheep of the freeholders and copyholders of Milton and of the small farmers of Upton. On Haddon those sheep could be joined by 523 sheep of the rector, Corpus Christi College, and the other Milton freeholder who had a several down.
By 1838 Clouds farm had been merged with Manor farm in East Knoyle; (fn. 258) much freehold and copyhold of inheritance land in Milton had been merged by Henry Seymour into Milton farm, 155 a. with buildings at the north end of the street; and there were still small farms based in the street. (fn. 259) In 1876 Milton farm measured 270 a. (fn. 260) That holding was broken up in the 20th century but in 1977 Milton, c. 70 a., was still the only farm worked from the street. (fn. 261) The remaining lands in the south part of the township were then mainly parts of Park farm, and those in the north part, including 85 a. of former glebe land, were mainly parts of Holden's farm which was established after the Second World War as a mixed upland farm of c. 500 a. with lands from Milton, Park, and Chapel farms. (fn. 262) Haddon hill was never inclosed and has become a common for the whole parish. The Church Commissioners conveyed the lord of the manor's rights in it to the parish council with their rights in Knoyle and Windmill hills. (fn. 263) Their rights in the common down were conveyed to John Granville Morrison in 1948. (fn. 264)
The township of Upton contained the demesne and tenanted lands of Upton manor and the manor of Upton Knoyle which never had customary tenants. The arable land was on the chalk north of the village. (fn. 265) It was used in common presumably in the 13th century when east and west fields were named, (fn. 266) and certainly in the 18th century when there were three fields divided into small strips in the usual way. (fn. 267) A several down, c. 46 a. in 1790, (fn. 268) was part of the demesne of Upton manor but the tenants of that manor and the lord of Upton Knoyle manor fed their sheep in common, and effectively in common with the copyholders and small freeholders of Milton. (fn. 269) In the early 13th century a pasture called the Frith, possibly near the village, was common to all the villagers. (fn. 270)
In 1288–9 90 a. were sown for the bishop of Winchester on the demesne of Upton manor, 73 a. in 1330–1, and 68 a. in 1377–8. (fn. 271) In the later 13th century and the early 14th sheep were not kept. In the later 14th century, however, there was a wether flock which numbered over 500 in 1395. (fn. 272) Like that of East Knoyle the demesne farm was leased in 1405 with the rents and services of the tenants (fn. 273) but, unlike Knoyle, was never taken back in hand. The annual rent was £11 in 1405, £12 6s. 8d. in 1482, and not afterwards changed. (fn. 274) The farm, called Chapel by 1650, (fn. 275) had buildings at the north end of the street. In 1790 it measured 236 a., including 149 a. in the common fields, with additional land at Lugmarsh. (fn. 276)
In the early 13th century 2 virgates and 7 ½virgates were held of Upton manor for rents and onerous labour services. (fn. 277) In 1288–9 rents totalled 23s. 3d.; (fn. 278) in the early 17th century there were eight copyholders. (fn. 279) The manor of Upton Knoyle was held of Knoyle manor for 15s. and a few labour services in the early 13th century. (fn. 280) In 1283 it was reckoned 1 carucate. (fn. 281) Later evidence shows it to have been smaller than Chapel farm, but by the late 18th century the addition of copyhold of inheritance land of Upton manor had made it roughly equal in size to that farm. (fn. 282) It had buildings at the southern end of Upton street. (fn. 283) There were five small freeholds c. 1638 (fn. 284) some of which, including that of Corpus Christi College, were apparently held of Upton Knoyle manor. (fn. 285)
The arable fields of Upton, c. 400 a., were inclosed with those of Milton in 1799. (fn. 286) Chapel farm was allotted the easternmost lands, 144 a., Upton Knoyle farm was allotted 121 a., and the remainder was divided among several free and customary small farms. The common pastures were not inclosed but their use was regulated by the award. That on the down, 19 a., was common to Chapel and Upton Knoyle farms, 102 sheep. That on Haddon hill, 15 a., was fed on by the same flocks as the Milton part of Haddon.
Upton Knoyle farm, including a large area of copyhold of inheritance land, measured c. 395 a. in 1807 and Chapel farm measured 285 a. in 1808 when there were also some five small farms and several smallholdings in Upton. (fn. 287) By 1838 the two large farms had been merged as Chapel farm and Henry Seymour had amalgamated most of the copyholds into Upton farm with buildings in the middle of Upton street on the west side. (fn. 288) In 1876 Chapel farm measured 703 a. mainly on the chalk north of the village, Upton farm 117 a. mainly below Cleeve hill west of Upton street. (fn. 289) In 1977 Chapel was a primarily arable farm of some 500 a. and Upton, then called Upton Dairy, a mixed farm of some 100 a. (fn. 290) The Upton part of Haddon hill was part of the parish common. The lord of the manor's rights in the formerly common down were conveyed with those in Milton down in 1948. (fn. 291)
The great lowland common of Knoyle on the clay of the Vale of Wardour extended over at least 1,500 a. The north-eastern part of it called Summerleaze, c. 350 a., was part of the bishop of Winchester's demesne farm although common rights over it were enjoyed by others. (fn. 292) The remainder included some lands which were inclosed in the Middle Ages but otherwise was open to the animals of all parishioners. (fn. 293) The inclosures were east of Shaftesbury Lane and were possibly complete in the early 13th century, by which time probably fewer than 400 a. had been inclosed. (fn. 294) They resulted in the establishment of three farms. Upper Leigh, possibly the largest, included 83 a. of inclosed lands in 1555; (fn. 295) Lower Leigh was leased for £5 11s. a year in 1548; (fn. 296) and Coleman's was c. 55 a. in 1622. (fn. 297) There were in addition inclosed meadows in the south-east corner of the parish including Jaghay which was apparently part of the Pythouse estate in the early 17th century; (fn. 298) and on some of the bishop of Winchester's demesne meadows, which had presumably been inclosed out of the common, Blackhouse farm had been established by 1635. (fn. 299)
Knoyle common west of Shaftesbury Lane was until 1330 within Selwood forest and could not lawfully have been inclosed without royal licence. (fn. 300) Its inclosure began under articles drawn up by agreement in 1636. It was agreed that of perhaps 750 a. to be disposed of there should be allotments of 100 a. to the bishop of Winchester, 100 a. to his lessee, 12 a. a yardland to the farmers, and 4 a. or 3 a. each to the cottagers. The inclosure was stopped by a dispute over whether the allotments of 100 a. should be fragmented, as the bishop and his lessee wished, or intact. The Exchequer decreed in 1638 that they should be intact and that, despite the agreement, the amounts of other allotments should be at the allotters' discretion. (fn. 301) In 1641 it was agreed to proceed under the terms of the decree. (fn. 302) In 1651 there were still disputes over how the land had been inclosed and in 1657 the parties appointed a commission which reported in 1658. The commissioners' findings were disputed and they resigned. (fn. 303) Later evidence shows the inclosure to have stood on roughly the terms of the 1636 agreement. (fn. 304) Allotments were made in respect of the farms on the common already inclosed. (fn. 305) The bishop's allotment, New Leaze, was in the extreme south-west corner of the parish. Buildings were erected on it and an arable and pasture farm, New Leaze, c. 100 a., was established. (fn. 306) The allotment to the bishop's lessee was at Friar's Hayes where Friar's Hayes farm, 110 a., had been established by 1650. (fn. 307) Other new farms were set up on the inclosures including Redhouse by 1773 (fn. 308) and Moor's and Brickyard by 1838. (fn. 309) A barn and 42 a. at Lugmarsh were then part of Chapel farm, and Vernhill farm, 35 a., had been established on the allotment to Corpus Christi College. (fn. 310) The rector received an allotment of 13 a. north of Friar's Hayes: seventeen of his nineteen cottagers, most of them at Holloway and Knoyle, received allotments of 3 a. or 4 a. (fn. 311)
In 1838 the common on both sides of Shaftesbury Lane was still a patchwork of small fields, none more extensive than c. 20 a., held of Knoyle manor freely, by lease, or by copy. There were still many owners but some of the farms had grown, presumably at the expense of smallholders based in the three villages. East of Shaftesbury Lane were the older farms, Upper Leigh, 147 a., Lower Leigh, 150 a., Blackhouse, 28 a., Coleman's, 72 a., and Kinghay, 43 a.; west of it were New Leaze, 100 a., Friar's Hayes, 211 a., Redhouse, 102 a., Moor's, 56 a., and a few farms of less than 50 a. (fn. 312) All were then arable and pasture farms but later dairy farming predominated. (fn. 313) East of the lane Lower Leigh, Kinghay, and Coleman's, all parts of the Pythouse estate, were merged into a farm measuring 318 a. in 1910. (fn. 314) In 1977 Lower Leigh, 216 a., and Coleman's were again separate farms. (fn. 315) Upper Leigh, c. 100 a., and Blackhouse remained similarly separate farms. (fn. 316) West of the lane Lugmarsh, Moor's, and Friar's Hayes were in 1919 pasture farms of respectively 142 a., 145 a., and 188 a. (fn. 317) They and New Leaze remained farms in 1977 but Redhouse was broken up. (fn. 318) On both sides of the lane pasture farming still predominated but there was again some tillage.
Certain free tenants claimed feeding for a total of 30 oxen with the bishop of Winchester's oxen, presumably in Summerleaze, in the earlier 13th century. (fn. 319) Summerleaze, said in 1782 to be 'a large piece of greensward ground much in the nature of a common', (fn. 320) remained part of the bishops' demesne and was used by the lessees for cattle and sheep. In 1600 Thomas Mompesson sub-let it to Sir Richard Grobham and there followed a dispute in which each impounded the other's animals. (fn. 321) It was later sublet as a farm, 360 a. in 1782, and buildings were erected on it. (fn. 322) The commoners had feeding from 3 May to 30 November. (fn. 323) In 1782 they numbered four, including the rector and Corpus Christi College, and had rights for 37 beasts. (fn. 324) Summerleaze was inclosed by Act in 1867. The commoners' rights were replaced by allotments which they exchanged with Alfred Seymour for lands in other parts of the parish. (fn. 325) In 1977 Summerleaze was a mixed farm of c. 360 a. (fn. 326)
Mills. The first mill in East Knoyle was apparently built in the earlier 13th century. (fn. 327) It was in the south-west corner of the parish at a place called Lushley near the confluence of the several southflowing streams. (fn. 328) There is no evidence that it survived the Middle Ages. A windmill was part of the manor of Knoyle in 1377–8 when two new sailyards were bought. (fn. 329) Its site is unknown but was possibly on Windmill hill. It seems to have worked until replaced by a new windmill built there c. 1536. (fn. 330) There was still a miller in 1855 but the mill had ceased working by 1886. (fn. 331) The circular stone post standing in 1977 had no datable feature. The weatherboarded cap and two sails shown in photographs of c. 1930 and earlier (fn. 332) have been removed.
In the Middle Ages only the bishops of Winchester exercised public jurisdiction from within East Knoyle. The bishops assumed for Knoyle many of the liberties which they had in the manor of Downton. (fn. 333) In 1255 they were defined as return of writs, vee de naam, and view of frankpledge. (fn. 334) In 1275 the bishop also claimed gallows and the assize of bread and ale, (fn. 335) and in 1289 felons' chattels, pillory, and tumbril. (fn. 336) Although part of the bailiwick of Downton, East Knoyle was for the purposes of the bishops' jurisdiction under those liberties never merged with the hundred of Downton. It remained separate and, including Hindon and Fonthill Bishop, was called a hundred and sometimes a liberty. (fn. 337) In the Middle Ages the hundred contained three tithings, Knoyle, Milton, and Fonthill Bishop. (fn. 338) Upton, which was then in Milton tithing although separately represented at royal inquests and in tax lists, (fn. 339) established itself as an additional tithing in the 17th century although its 'foreman' was never called a tithingman. (fn. 340) The tithings of East Knoyle and Fonthill were, however, united in a single constablewick. (fn. 341)
In the early 13th century bishops held Hock-tide and Martinmas tourns for the hundred as they did elsewhere. (fn. 342) The assize of ale was enforced from the mid 13th century. (fn. 343) The first separately enrolled records of the tourn known to survive are for 1464. (fn. 344) Procedure was similar to that of contemporary Downton tourns. The tithingmen of Fonthill, Knoyle, and Milton and the bailiff of Hindon presented and a jury of twelve freemen affirmed and added to the presentments. In the later 15th century and the 16th the presentments of the Knoyle and Milton tithingmen were not numerous and, apart from recording that cert-money was paid, were mainly of brewers, butchers, and millers. Occasionally, however, affrays and breaches of agrarian custom were dealt with and further offences, including public nuisances, were presented by the jurors. From the mid 16th century elections of constables of the hundred were recorded. In the 17th century the constable and the tithingmen made formal presentments at each tourn but rarely of an offence beyond failing to attend the tourn. The jurors, however, regularly presented offenders and were particularly concerned with the condition of roads and bridges, sometimes ordering the parish to repair. From the later 17th century tourns were held annually in September. The tithingmen presented nothing but the payment of cert-money, and the courts proceeded on the presentments of two juries. The 'jury for the king' continued to present public nuisances and the homage presented manorial business formerly transacted in separate courts. (fn. 345) Tourns continued thus until the mid 19th century and ostensibly serious presentments of nuisances were still made. They included the presentment in 1829 of the trustees of the Shaftesbury turnpike for encroaching on the waste by building on it a turnpike gate and house. By 1800, however, the main work of the jurors was to present the choice of constables, tithingmen, and foremen of Upton and of the homage to present the customs of the manor.
Overseers and waywardens were being appointed for East Knoyle in the early 17th century: (fn. 346) Hindon and Fonthill Bishop apparently had their own officers. Later there were surveyors of roads for each of the three Knoyle tithings. (fn. 347) Outdoor relief under the Elizabethan poor law totalled £8 in 1607. (fn. 348) More money was being spent in the 1630s but the most rapid increase in spending, to over £50 a year in the period 1665–7, was after the Restoration. (fn. 349) In the late 17th century more than half the annual expenditure was on monthly doles. (fn. 350) In 1733 the parish repaired a house in Milton tithing to receive the poor who in 1749 were required to be badged. (fn. 351) A surgeon and apothecary was regularly appointed. (fn. 352) Indoor relief certainly increased in the 18th century, (fn. 353) and in 1750 a condition of outdoor relief was that those owning a dwelling-house convey reversion of it to the parish. A determination to insist on that condition was marked by the vestry's resolution, repeated in 1794, to appeal against an order of any justice to relieve unconditionally. (fn. 354) In 1776–7 £245 was spent. (fn. 355) By the mid 18th century the office of overseer had been attached to farms and rotated, and from 1794 was held for two years. (fn. 356) In 1796 a salaried deputy overseer was appointed. (fn. 357) In 1811 the parish agreed to provide a new workhouse which was built a little north of East Knoyle village beside the road to Hindon. (fn. 358) The parish nominated a visitor to inspect it each year and from 1825 paid a full-time governor and governess. (fn. 359) Its inhabitants were uniformed. (fn. 360) In 1835 East Knoyle joined Mere poor-law union, (fn. 361) and in 1841 sold its workhouse and five tenements. (fn. 362) The site of the workhouse is that of Park Farm. (fn. 363)
Private jurisdiction through manorial courts was exercised by the bishops of Winchester and by the rectors. The bishop's courts for the manor of East Knoyle were held several times a year by his bailiff. (fn. 364) In the Middle Ages the courts enforced customary obligations to the lord, heard pleas between tenants, and presentments by the homage that, for example, tenants had died and agrarian customs had been breached, and witnessed surrenders and admittances. (fn. 365) In the 16th century the tithingmen of East Knoyle and Milton, the foreman of Upton, and the homage all presented. From c. 1515 separate courts were held for the manor of Upton. (fn. 366) Manor courts apparently ceased in the later 17th century. The business, by then principally the recording of conveyances of copyholds of inheritance, was transferred to the annual tourns where in 1702 and 1720 the bishop was presented for not keeping three-weekly courts for the liberty. (fn. 367) No record, beyond copies, (fn. 368) survives of rectors' courts which were presumably held solely for surrenders of and admittances to copyholds.
A church was standing at Knoyle before the Conquest. (fn. 369) In the early 13th century a chapel of ease was built at Hindon which became a separate ecclesiastical parish in 1869. (fn. 370) In 1914 318 a. of East Knoyle, New Leaze and Friar's Hayes farms, were made part of the new ecclesiastical parish of Sedgehill. (fn. 371) From 1952 the rectory was held in plurality with the living of Sedgehill. (fn. 372) In 1976 it was united with the vicarage of Hindon with Chicklade and Pertwood. (fn. 373)
The advowson of the rectory passed with the lordship of Knoyle manor. From 1199 to 1201 it was disputed between Godfrey de Lucy, bishop of Winchester, and Maud de Beaumont, countess of Warwick, who claimed it as part of her dower, (fn. 374) but after her death it passed with the see of Winchester. (fn. 375) The only recorded presentations not by a bishop were in 1559 and 1570, (fn. 376) in the Civil War and Interregnum, (fn. 377) and in 1660 when the Crown presented after the ejection of the incumbent. (fn. 378) In 1865 the advowson was transferred to the see of Oxford (fn. 379) and in 1953 to the see of Salisbury. (fn. 380) The bishop of Salisbury was patron in 1977.
Medieval and modern valuations, including those of 1291 at £20 and 1296 at 60 marks, (fn. 381) of 1650 at £230 excluding Hindon's tithes, (fn. 382) and of 1829–31 at £850, (fn. 383) show the living to have always been rich. The rector was entitled to all the tithes from the whole parish including Hindon. (fn. 384) Those of East Knoyle were valued at £925 in 1837 and commuted in 1841, those of Hindon valued at £70 in 1843 and commuted in 1844. (fn. 385) The glebe, consisting of a demesne farm and land held customarily, some 170 a. in all, was considered a manor. (fn. 386) The copyholds were enfranchised in the late 19th century, (fn. 387) and 85 a. of upland demesne were sold in 1947 to John Granville Morrison (Lord Margadale). (fn. 388) Some 13 a. of land on Knoyle common were part of the living in 1977. (fn. 389) Parts of the medieval glebe-house can be seen in a low range abutting the west side of the later Rectory, now called Knoyle Place, in which there are some old walls containing parts of two 15thcentury doorways apparently at the opposite ends of a cross-passage. The remainder was presumably demolished when in 1799 (fn. 390) the large almost square new house was built with an eastern entrance front of three bays and a southern garden front of five bays. In 1935 the Rectory was sold to Sir Francis Geoffrey Fison, (fn. 391) and from 1965 has belonged to Sir John Eden. (fn. 392) The new Rectory at Holloway, formerly Holloway Farm, is a late-17th-century house with a symmetrical front to the west and a rear service wing. (fn. 393) It was sold in 1977 when the incumbent lived at Hindon. (fn. 394)
In the 14th century several of the rectors are known to have been pluralists. (fn. 395) Stephen Morpeth, rector 1405–68, already a pluralist, was in 1409 licensed to study for three years. (fn. 396) He became a chaplain of Henry V and held among other livings the deanery of the free chapel of St. Nicholas in Wallingford castle. (fn. 397) Robert Morwent, rector 1523– 58, was president of Corpus Christi College, Oxford, from 1537 and in 1550 a curate served the church. (fn. 398) After Morwent's death, presumably when the living was in Elizabeth I's gift after the Marian Bishop White was deprived in 1559, John Haytor, the lessee of the tithes and glebe, (fn. 399) was licensed to present. His nominee was his son Thomas who was later found to have been under age and not in holy orders. In 1570 Bishop Home granted the advowson for one turn to James Mervyn who presented John Mervyn. After contests between Thomas Haytor and John Mervyn in the spiritual and secular courts and twice by force at the rectory-house Mervyn retained the living, but the church was served by a curate. (fn. 400) The rector from 1623 was Christopher Wren, dean of Windsor from 1635. (fn. 401) Wren was registrar of the Order of the Garter, a position which he used to invoke the king's intervention when his pigeonhouse was undermined by the saltpetre commissioner in 1636. (fn. 402) He held other parish livings and was the father of Sir Christopher Wren, who was born at East Knoyle in 1631 or 1632. (fn. 403) Sir Christopher kept a link with the parish until 1662 when he surrendered a small copyhold of inheritance. (fn. 404) Dean Wren compounded for the rectory in 1645, but in 1646 it was sequestered for his support of the king and given to William Clifford who was later said to preach twice every Sunday. (fn. 405) Clifford's son Samuel succeeded him in 1655 and was ejected in 1660. (fn. 406) His successor Enoch Gray was also ejected for nonconformity and both remained in the parish. (fn. 407) Samuel Rolleston, archdeacon of Salisbury 1732–66, was rector 1745–6. (fn. 408) His successor Charles Wake, whose assistant curate was a local landowner and who held other livings, in 1783 held services twice on Sundays and administered the Sacrament at the great festivals. His curate catechized. (fn. 409) In 1864 the rector held services with sermons thrice on winter and twice on summer Sundays with an average congregation of 220. Communion was once a month for the 80–100 communicants. (fn. 410) In 1977 services were held every Sunday.
The church of ST. MARY is built mostly of coursed rubble, which was formerly rendered, (fn. 411) and has a chancel with south organ chamber, a nave with short aisles, north-western vestry, and south porch, and a west tower. Parts of the walls of the nave and of the western part of the chancel remain from a pre-Conquest church. Early features which survive are an exposed length of double plinth and cut back blind arcading on the north wall of the chancel, and possibly the north doorway. Early in the 13th century the chancel was extended and refenestrated. Later in that century north and south transeptal chapels were added to the nave. The porch was built in the 14th century and the tower in the 15th when the south doorway and east window were also inserted. The arrangement of the interior is shown in a plan of 1632. (fn. 412) About 1639 the chancel was decorated with plasterwork, designed by Dean Wren and executed by Robert Brockway, depicting scenes from the Old and New Testaments. (fn. 413) In 1714 a west gallery was erected, (fn. 414) and in 1756 the lead was removed from the roof and replaced by stone tiles. (fn. 415) The first of several 19th-century enlargements was the extension of the north transept into an aisle in 1829, perhaps by John Peniston of Salisbury who is known to have built a gallery about then. (fn. 416) In 1845 the south aisle and the vestry were added, the chancel arch was widened, the gallery enlarged, and there was general restoration under Wyatt and Brandon. (fn. 417) The organ chamber was added, the gallery removed, and the church refitted under Sir Arthur Blomfield in 1875–6. (fn. 418) A new burial ground opened in 1899 (fn. 419) contains Wyndham corner, a partly walled enclosure by Detmar Blow with ground and wall monuments and a central monolith.
There were four bells in 1553. (fn. 420) The treble was recast in 1627. (fn. 421) In the 18th century the ring was increased to six: bells (i)–(iii) were founded by William Cockey of Frome (Som.) in 1726, (iv) came from the same foundry in 1748, and (v) and (vi) were probably also by Cockey. (fn. 422) Bell (v) was recast by Robert and James Wells of Aldbourne in 1794 and the tenor by Mears and Stainbank of Whitechapel in 1839 when all the bells were rehung. The bells were restored and rehung in 1933 (fn. 423) and were still in the church in 1977. (fn. 424)
In 1553 the king's commissioners took 4 oz. of plate from the parish and left 11 oz. Augustus Mervyn (d. 1637) gave a new paten and Richard Hill, rector 1662–95, gave two chalices and a paten in 1677 and a flagon in 1681. (fn. 425) Those pieces still belonged to the church in 1977. (fn. 426)
The registers date from 1538. Entries before 1636 are transcriptions. Richard Dew was appointed parish registrar in 1654 and from 1653 the registers are complete. (fn. 427)
An East Knoyle man was suspected of recusancy in 1584, (fn. 428) in 1586 a Roman Catholic priest ordained abroad was arrested in Knoyle, (fn. 429) and it is possible that in the early 17th century several papists lived at Knoyle. (fn. 430) Between 1662 and 1706 several papist families were named but never more than six people at once. (fn. 431)
After their ejection from the rectory Samuel Clifford and Enoch Gray apparently led an Independent congregation at Knoyle and in 1662 there were also some Baptists. (fn. 432) In 1676 there were 45 nonconformists, an unusually high number for a place outside the cloth-working areas of the county. (fn. 433) The Baptist congregation, whose leader John Williams attended the London General Assemblies of 1689 and 1692, was possibly linked with Baptists in neighbouring villages. It continued until 1743 but afterwards died out and in 1783 there was no nonconformist at Knoyle. (fn. 434)
In 1797 and 1805 dwelling-houses were certified as meeting-houses for Independents. (fn. 435) In 1827 the Independents, under the patronage of Charles Jupe, a silk manufacturer of Mere, opened a cottage for worship and a chapel was built to adjoin it. (fn. 436) In 1849 the chapel was bought by the rector and closed. The congregation converted a cottage into a meeting house and on Census Sunday in 1851 36 and 35 people attended the morning and evening services. (fn. 437) Jupe built a new Congregational chapel and schoolroom in the village at the top end of Shaftesbury Lane in 1854. (fn. 438) It was served by ministers of the Wiltshire and East Somerset Congregational Union and a manse had been added by 1906. (fn. 439) The church remained open and had a resident pastor in 1977. (fn. 440)
A chapel, later called the Ebenezer chapel, was built at the Green for Primitive Methodists in 1843. (fn. 441) In 1851 congregations of 90 and 79 attended afternoon and evening services. (fn. 442) The church, which is dated 1857, had been closed by 1977.
The East Knoyle and Semley Baptist chapel had a schoolroom in Knoyle which in 1821 was licensed for meetings. (fn. 443) It flourished for a time but the room had apparently been closed by 1851. (fn. 444)
In 1683 a school was being held by an unlicensed nonconformist. (fn. 445) By will proved 1707 the rector Charles Trippett gave £100 to be invested for a school for poor children. The capital was invested in 1765 and the interest, £5 a year, was given to the mistress of the Sunday school. Before 1783 Mary Shaw, widow of the rector John Shaw (d. 1745), gave by will £100 to assist the teaching of poor children and the interest, £6, was applied with Trippett's money. (fn. 446)
In 1808 the two charities provided for the teaching of 26 children; another school had recently been started; and there were some smaller schools. (fn. 447) In 1818 the charity money was given to a mistress who taught 27 children and there were four other dayschools for a total of 65 children. (fn. 448) Those schools possibly included the Baptist school, which in 1821 is the first known to have had a special room but in 1833 was apparently a Sunday school. (fn. 449) The school partly supported by the charities was in 1833 attended by 54 children but was still held in the mistress's house, leased to her by the rector. At two other schools there were 31 and 15 pupils. (fn. 450) By 1839 a new schoolroom near Knoyle House had been built for the charity school, (fn. 451) but other schools continued and in 1858 there were three in the parish, the National school supported partly by the charities, a private school for some twenty children of farmers and tradesmen, and for the Congregationalists a British school adjoining the chapel. (fn. 452) A new National school was built between the church and the Rectory in 1872–3. It is of stone with details in a Moorish style to designs of G. Aitchison. (fn. 453) The British school, which had an average attendance of 38 in 1870, (fn. 454) had been closed by 1881 (fn. 455) and from then the National school was the only one in the parish. In 1906 the average attendance was 135. (fn. 456) It had fallen to 89 by 1922 and to 74 by 1936. (fn. 457) In 1977 there were 29 pupils. (fn. 458)
Trippett's and Mary Shaw's charities, managed by the trustees of Robert Compton's charity (see below), were merged with Compton's by a Scheme of 1897. In 1903 their joint income, £8, was paid to the school. (fn. 459) In 1975 they were united as the East Knoyle Educational Charity and in 1976 the income of £7 was given to the school. (fn. 460)
Charities for the Poor.
By will proved 1687 Robert Compton gave,£300 to invest in land for the purposes of binding orphan children apprentice and relieving the old and feeble poor not otherwise relieved. In 1692 the trustees were mortgagees of an estate of 27 a. in Upton and Milton and from 1717 owned it. To augment the charity the trustees were given, £20 by Francis Morley in 1693 and £40 by Edward Sanger in 1713, and in 1766 £50 from those gifts was invested. In 1833 the total income was £38: £5 was placed annually in an apprenticing fund, the remainder distributed at Whitsun among some 30 unrelieved poor over 60 who received between 10s. and £3 15s. each. In 1867 the income was £62 of which £42 was distributed. (fn. 461) The trustees administered several other East Knoyle charities (fn. 462) of which by a Scheme of 1897 they became trustees. (fn. 463) The charities thus merged were united by a Scheme of 1975 as the East Knoyle Welfare Trust and the East Knoyle Educational Charity. In 1976 the trust had an income of £327 of which £60 was spent on apprenticing, £261 on winter fuel for 24 pensioners. (fn. 464)
In 1690 Robert Compton's widow Susannah gave 11 a. to benefit unrelieved poor of the parish. The rent from it, £18 in 1833, was received by the trustees of Robert Compton's charity who distributed money in November, in 1833 in sums of between 1s. 6d. and 16s. The charity was merged with Robert Compton's in 1897. (fn. 465) In 1962 the land was apparently sold and £990 invested. Income that year was £47 of which most was spent on coal. (fn. 466) In 1975 the charity was united with Robert Compton's. (fn. 467)
John Shaw (d. 1745), the rector, (fn. 468) gave by will £50 to benefit the poor of East Knoyle. In 1766 that sum with interest, £74, was given to trustees who, when the capital reached £80, distributed £4 a year. In 1829 the capital was invested. In 1832 the trustees of Robert Compton's charity distributed the income, £2 14s., in sums of 1s. at Christmas and in 1897 the charity was merged with Compton's. In 1904 the beneficiaries were the 21 parishioners receiving poor-relief who were each given 2s. 4½d. (fn. 469) Under a Scheme of 1950 the income was devoted to emergency relief in money or goods. (fn. 470) In 1962 £3 15s. was spent. The charity was united with the Comptons' charities in 1975. (fn. 471)
Anthony Burbidge (d. 1823) gave by will £100 to benefit poor widows and widowers over 50 at Christmas. Benefit was confined to practising Anglicans. The money was invested in 1833 and £5 distributed among ten widows and five widowers. In 1906 6s. was paid to each of seven or eight poor widows and widowers. (fn. 472) The charity, whose subsequent history is not clear, has possibly been merged with Robert Compton's.
Hindon is a settlement planned by a bishop of Winchester and founded in the early 13th century. The tenements were built on both sides of a street and behind them were narrow burgage plots, vestiges of which remain visible. (fn. 473) The main period of building seems to have been 1218–20. (fn. 474) Like other contemporary new towns Hindon was presumably conceived as a centre for artisans and of trade in their and other wares. (fn. 475) It was established on chalk downland in the north-east corner of the manor and parish of East Knoyle nearer to Chicklade, Berwick St. Leonard, and the Fonthills than to East Knoyle. The street ran north-west to south-east down a steep hill and ended abruptly at the parish boundary. (fn. 476) It was part of a road which was possibly ancient but apparently without prominence, (fn. 477) and the straightness of the street is a mark of the bishop's planning rather than the road's original course. If, as may be assumed, it was previously unoccupied Hindon's site on remote downland in a far corner of the parish calls for an explanation. The most likely one is perhaps that Hindon was built as far as possible from the rival centres of Mere and Shaftesbury (Dors.), and as near as possible to the villages of the upper Nadder valley and to those lying along the Wylye between the market towns of Warminster and Wilton.
It was possibly intended that the burgesses should have no land beyond the burgage plots. Soon after foundation, however, at least 75 a. of land in plots of 1–10 a. were conveyed for 6d. an acre to inhabitants, presumably to ensure the survival of so young and remote a community, (fn. 478) and c. 1231 the bishop sold a coomb of his down to the burgesses for an annual payment of 15s. (fn. 479) Those lands, whose boundaries were the straight boundaries of East Knoyle, were presumably the lands around Hindon which with the village became the chapelry, 228 a. (92 ha.). (fn. 480) Hindon remained a chapelry of East Knoyle until 1869 but, relieving its own poor, was considered a civil parish. (fn. 481) In 1934 parts of Chicklade, Berwick St. Leonard, and Fonthill Gifford parishes were transferred to Hindon (fn. 482) whose bounds were thus extended southwards and eastwards to enclose a roughly square parish, 417 ha. (1,031 a.). (fn. 483)
Hindon survived as a settlement and c. 1250, when there were some 150 houses, (fn. 484) its population was apparently above that of an average village. There were no more than 77 poll-tax payers in 1377 (fn. 485) and Hindon was clearly not a large settlement in the 17th century. (fn. 486) In 1801 the population was 793. It reached a peak of 921 in 1831 when there were some 190 houses. (fn. 487) What prosperity Hindon had was due more to its market and fairs, (fn. 488) and to its position on and near main roads, than to its industry. From the later Middle Ages Hindon's status as a parliamentary borough (fn. 489) may have attracted investment and occasional trade, and its central position in southwest Wiltshire made it a centre of local government. Between 1530 and 1660 it was sometimes a venue for quarter sessions and in 1786 was made the centre of a petty sessional division. (fn. 490) In 1688 Clarendon met William of Orange there. (fn. 491) The road from Barford St. Martin, Wilton, and Salisbury to Willoughby Hedge in West Knoyle crossed Hindon street. Especially after that and the main London-Exeter road across the downs were turnpiked in the 18th century, (fn. 492) Hindon attracted much coach traffic, providing for which was probably its principal industry. (fn. 493) There were fourteen inns and public houses in 1754, (fn. 494) and in the early 19th century the inns were still numerous. (fn. 495) In 1830 London coaches from Exeter left daily from the Swan and from Barnstaple (Devon) nightly from the Lamb, and there were corresponding services westwards. (fn. 496) Such was the vitality of Hindon in the 18th century that it quickly recovered after a serious fire which spread along the street and did much damage 2–3 July 1754. (fn. 497) In the 19th century, however, after the peak of 1831, Hindon declined. The population had fallen to 603 by 1871 and the decline continued until 1931 when there were 376 inhabitants. (fn. 498) By then market and fairs had ceased and there were only two public houses, the Lamb and the Grosvenor Arms which both remained open in 1977. (fn. 499) The magistrates' court was moved to Tisbury in 1887. (fn. 500) Hindon's decline coincided with and has been attributed to its disfranchisement in 1832, (fn. 501) but probably as important was the railway connexion of London to Taunton and Exeter in the early 1840s (fn. 502) and a decline in road traffic through the borough. Some of the population decline in Hindon after 1831 was compensated by the growth of settlement around the bottom of the street. That settlement, including a school and a nonconformist chapel, (fn. 503) was part of Hindon although situated in the three neighbouring parishes. In 1934 it was transferred to Hindon with its population of some 110. (fn. 504) In 1971 Hindon's population was 534. (fn. 505)
In 1748 there were unbroken lines of buildings on both sides of the whole length of the street and behind them many cottages, some of them in rows endways on in the narrow burgage plots, and other buildings had by then been erected on those plots. (fn. 506) The market was presumably held along the whole street and a market building then stood in the street between the points at which the road from Barford St. Martin to Willoughby Hedge entered and left it. The survival of a number of houses which are of the early 18th century or earlier, particularly on the west side of the street, suggests that the fire of 1754 did not seriously affect every building and belies the contemporary claim that little of Hindon survived. (fn. 507) Damage was clearly extensive, however, in the centre of the street on the east side, where on both sides of the road from Barford St. Martin the buildings behind the street were most numerous. Part of that area was not rebuilt and in 1977 remained an empty square around the south and west sides of which the road from Barford St. Martin to Willoughby Hedge passed. On the east side of the street south of that road, however, is a group of houses which seem to have been built soon after 1754. Hindon is still characterized by its long straight street which was lined with trees in 1863. (fn. 508) It contains a mixture of houses dating from the later 17th century to the 19th. Stone predominated until the later 18th century; red brick afterwards became more common. A notable feature of the centre of the street on the west side is a group of substantial buildings whose frontages are pierced by carriage entrances and which were presumably inns. Mid-20th-century council houses have been built behind the church at the north-west end of the street. The settlement at the south-east end is on a north-east to south-west line at right angles to the street.
There were a few houses on the downs in 1748. (fn. 509) One of them, Hawking Down House, was replaced by a small house in Tudor style which was described as new in 1838. The new house was said to have been built for the valet of William Beckford (d. 1844), possibly c. 1822 when Beckford left Fonthill Gifford. (fn. 510)
The land on which Hindon was built and the land which became the chapelry were part of the bishop of Winchester's manor of East Knoyle. The lands were held freely and the bishops remained overlords. (fn. 511) The freeholds were at first small but in the 14th century the Mussel family, including Walter (fl. 1297), his son John (fl. 1332), and grandson Philip Mussel (fl. 1380), apparently accumulated a substantial estate. (fn. 512) Philip's heir was his sister Joan, wife of John Brit (fl. 1430) who bought more land, probably including the 94 a. held by Thomas Mussel in 1348. (fn. 513) The Brits' heirs were Joan's cousins Joan, wife of Richard Herdell, and Catherine, wife of Richard Coof. (fn. 514) Their land in Hindon was allotted to the Herdells whose son Robert mortgaged it to Thomas Tropenell in 1452. Tropenell (d. 1488) entered in 1456 and, despite disputes before and after then, retained his manor of HINDON. (fn. 515) The manor passed to his son Christopher (d. 1503), Christopher's son Thomas (d. 1547), and Thomas's son Giles (d. 1553) whose heirs were his four sisters. (fn. 516) Hindon was allotted to his sister Eleanor, wife of Andrew Blackman who held the manor until his death in 1588. (fn. 517) Blackman's successor was the one of his three daughters who married Richard Mompesson, whose brother and heir Drew held the manor in 1600. (fn. 518) Drew Mompesson was succeeded by his son Jasper who, a debtor, conveyed it to William and Robert Toope as trustees for the payment of debts and legacies. (fn. 519) Despite Mompesson's attempts to stop them the Toopes sold the manor c. 1620, possibly to Edward Perry (d. 1648), a Hindon innkeeper, who held it c. 1641. (fn. 520) In 1670 it was conveyed by James Perry, possibly Edward's son, and others to Thomas Thynne, (fn. 521) whose executors sold it to Sir Matthew Andrews of Mere, presumably c. 1683. (fn. 522) In 1701 Sir Matthew sold it to Thomas Jervoise. (fn. 523) About 1738 the manor was acquired, presumably by purchase from Jervoise, by Henry Calthorpe (knighted 1744, d. 1788) whose heir was his nephew Sir Henry Gough-Calthorpe, Bt. (created Baron Calthorpe 1796, d. 1798). (fn. 524) The manor, in 1820 consisting of 179 a. and some 89 houses, (fn. 525) passed with the Calthorpe title to Sir Henry's sons Charles (d. 1807), George (d. 1851), and Frederick Gough, Lord Calthorpe, who apparently in the 1850s sold it to Richard Grosvenor, marquess of Westminster. (fn. 526) The manor passed with Fonthill Abbey to Westminster's widow Elizabeth Mary (d. 1891) who sold her life interest to Sir Michael Robert Shaw-Stewart, Bt. (d. 1903), the husband of her daughter Octavia. (fn. 527) At Octavia's death in 1921 the manor passed to her son Walter Richard Shaw-Stewart who sold it in 1922. (fn. 528) The manor was broken up. (fn. 529)
Agriculture. There is evidence of prehistoric ploughing on the downs near Hindon, (fn. 530) but when it was demised to the burgesses c. 1231 the coomb was a pasture for the bishop of Winchester's sheep. (fn. 531) By the later 13th century the burgesses had ploughed it. The east and west fields of Hindon were mentioned then and in the early 14th century in terms which indicate that they were divided into small strips and cultivated in common in the manner normal in older established field systems. (fn. 532) The plots of 1–10 a. conveyed to individual burgesses, however, were presumably several and inclosed. (fn. 533) References to a north field in 1332 and later suggest cultivation in three fields. (fn. 534) There was common feeding, presumably on the summit called Hocken (later Hawking) down in the north end of the chapelry. (fn. 535) Strip cultivation still prevailed in 1431, (fn. 536) but there is no evidence of it later. The land had possibly been inclosed by the mid 16th century when many small closes were mentioned. (fn. 537) Hocken down, which in the mid 18th century lay divided among several farms, (fn. 538) had presumably been inclosed with it. In 1741 there were several small farms in Hindon. (fn. 539) In 1843 there were three of 30–45 a. and three of 10–20 a. All had farmsteads in the street except Hawking Down farm, 18 a., which, however, then had no land on the old Hocken down. Nearly all the land was ploughed. (fn. 540) In 1923 there were still several farms in Hindon, some apparently including land in other parishes. (fn. 541) In 1977 most of the land of the parish, more arable in the northern half, pasture in the southern half, was shared among smallholders. (fn. 542)
Markets and Fairs. A market-place and a building for merchants were provided and a cross raised in 1218–19, and in 1219 the bishop of Winchester was granted a Thursday market. (fn. 543) The weekly market seems to have begun immediately. Frequent references to stallage and shambles suggest that it continued without interruption, (fn. 544) and a claim that many were attracted to it was implied in 1405. (fn. 545) Hindon was noted for its market in the mid and later 16th century when clerks of the market had opportunities to be corrupt which might not have existed had the market been less popular. (fn. 546) In the 17th century it clearly flourished as a corn market: Aubrey, rather surprisingly, rated it second only to Warminster c. 1650, (fn. 547) and c. 1707 it was coupled with Chippenham as a great Wiltshire market. (fn. 548) The market was still held in the early 19th century (fn. 549) but then its prominence may have been less marked, and in the later 19th century it seems to have declined rapidly. It ceased in the early 1880s. (fn. 550)
A Michaelmas fair was granted with the market in 1219 and seems to have been annually held. (fn. 551) In 1332, however, it was replaced by two yearly threeday fairs at Ascension and St. Luke's (18 October) which were then granted to the bishop. (fn. 552) Like the market the fairs seem to have flourished but by the 1790s, when dealing in cattle and cheese was mentioned, they had been restricted to single days, the Monday before Whitsun and 29 October. (fn. 553) In the later 19th century they were held on 27 May and 29 October. In the early 20th century only the autumn fair was held and after the First World War none was held. (fn. 554)
Trade and Industry.
From its foundation most of the inhabitants of Hindon presumably supported themselves through trade. (fn. 555) In 1558 the town was said to abound in artisans, (fn. 556) but it has never contained a great concentration of any one trade. While the market and fairs flourished many were engaged in baking, brewing, and innkeeping, (fn. 557) and in the later 18th century the support of travellers was said to be the chief trade. (fn. 558) That trade was reduced in the 19th century when the market and fairs and coach travel declined, but revived somewhat when motor traffic increased in the mid 20th century.
In the 15th and 16th centuries there were weavers in Hindon. (fn. 559) In the late 18th century the town had a small share in the linen, dowlas, and tick-weaving industry based at Mere, but had almost lost it by 1820. Similarly the making of silk twist was in decline in 1820. (fn. 560) About 1700 there were three clock-makers and the Gerard and Stephens families continued clock-making until the late 18th century. (fn. 561) Gunpowder was apparently made at Hindon until the making was transferred to Salisbury c. 1636. (fn. 562) Trades and industries in Hindon were otherwise what might have been expected to meet the needs of the agrarian economies of the surrounding villages: craftsmen working in wood, metal, and leather were frequently mentioned, (fn. 563) as were other tradesmen such as chandlers and surgeons, (fn. 564) but no business has ever grown to a substantial size. In 1977 most of the working population was employed outside the parish.
In the Middle Ages Hindon was governed through the bishop of Winchester's tourns held for the liberty of East Knoyle. (fn. 565) Hindon was part of no tithing. Its bailiff fulfilled the functions of the tithingmen in East Knoyle and Fonthill Bishop, and Hindon had its own constable. (fn. 566) The bailiff presented more breaches of the assizes of bread and ale than did the tithingmen, presumably because of Hindon's market and fairs. In 1464, for example, 2 brewers, 9 taverners, 2 innkeepers, 3 bakers, and 1 butcher were amerced. (fn. 567) Other offenders were less frequently presented although in the late 15th century and the 16th affrays, unlawful gaming, and moral offences were sometimes dealt with. (fn. 568) In the 17th and 18th centuries public nuisances were the main Hindon matters presented, and both before and after the fire of 1754 the dangerous condition of chimneys was frequently reported. In 1732 and 1754 the stocks, blindhouse, pillory, and cross were said to need repair. (fn. 569)
Hindon was responsible for relieving its own poor but no record of its doing so survives. In 1812 the inhabitants agreed to provide a new workhouse and by the 1820s a house and malt-house in the street had been converted. (fn. 570) In 1835 Hindon joined Tisbury poor-law union. (fn. 571)
Hindon was summoned to parliament first in 1378 and continually until 1385 but returned no member. (fn. 572) From 1448–9 until it was disfranchised in 1832 it was regularly summoned and represented by two members. (fn. 573) The returning officer was the bailiff appointed by the bishop of Winchester. (fn. 574) The franchise was possibly in the burgage holders but in the mid 17th century was apparently broadened: in 1646 and perhaps in 1660 there were double returns, of elections both by the burgesses and by the inhabitants at large. (fn. 575) In 1688 there were some 120 electors, (fn. 576) presumably the occupiers of all houses in the borough, and in 1701 and 1728 the franchise was formally vested in the householders. (fn. 577)
The influence of bishops of Winchester has been detected in 16th-century elections of members, few of whom had local connexions. (fn. 578) From the late 16th century, however, episcopal influence waned and members of prominent south-west Wiltshire families began to be elected. The families included those of Mervyn, Thynne, Hyde, and Ludlow in the earlier 17th century and those of Hyde, Thynne, Howe, and Benett in the later 17th century. (fn. 579) The borough, open and corrupt, was the stage on which fierce local rivalries were enacted. (fn. 580) The Morley family, members of which were lessees of the demesne of Knoyle manor, enjoyed a period of influence from 1695 to 1710 but afterwards the pattern of representation changed. (fn. 581)
Hindon was reckoned an exceptionally corrupt borough by even 18th-century standards. (fn. 582) In 1702 a bill to widen the franchise to include freeholders in Downton hundred qualified to vote in county elections was passed by the Commons but went no further, and in 1774, when an election was declared void after reciprocal accusations of bribery by all four candidates, a disfranchisement bill was unsuccessfully introduced. (fn. 583) Because seats could be bought Hindon attracted a variety of candidates without local connexion. Its M.P.s included from 1735 to 1741 Henry Fox, afterwards created Baron Holland, and from 1761 to 1768 the legal writer and judge Sir William Blackstone. (fn. 584) In the 18th century, however, the influence of the Calthorpe and Beckford families grew as each acquired property in Hindon. Calthorpes appeared among the members in the earlier 18th and earlier 19th centuries and William Beckford from 1790 to 1818. (fn. 585) From the later 18th century until disfranchisement the influence on elections of the lords of Hindon and Fonthill Gifford manors was paramount. (fn. 586)
A chapel was built when Hindon was founded. (fn. 587) It was presumably poorly served by the rector and at least in the later 14th century, when the inhabitants had to attend their parish church, almost certainly closed. About 1405 it was refounded and apparently partly rebuilt. The inhabitants were granted rights of burial and baptism in it but not of marriage, and the church remained dependent on East Knoyle as a chapel. Under the terms of a papal licence it was served by a chaplain nominated by the rector or, if he failed to appoint, by the inhabitants of Hindon themselves. (fn. 588) The chapel was not endowed at foundation but it seems that in the 15th century the congregation, as permitted by the papal licence and it is said with royal licence, endowed it with buildings in Hindon and with land. In return the inhabitants secured sole right of appointment from the rector (fn. 589) who nevertheless retained the tithes of the chapelry. (fn. 590) The church's endowment was confiscated at the dissolution of the chantries and in 1549 part of it was sold by the Crown. (fn. 591) The inhabitants, stating that the church could not be maintained without an endowment, petitioned for its restoration and in 1558 the Crown restored the unsold portion. A corporation of governors was established to hold and manage it for the maintenance of the chaplain and chapel, and the word 'free' was subsequently prefixed to the church's name. Although not expressly stated it is clear that from then the right of appointment passed to the Crown. (fn. 592) About 1650 the parliamentary commissioners recommended that Hindon should become a parish, (fn. 593) but it remained a chapelry and in 1783 there was still no right of marriage. (fn. 594) The corporation of governors was reconstituted in 1779 and in 1868 the real property in the chapel's endowment was sold. (fn. 595) After commutation in 1844 (fn. 596) the rent-charge in respect of the great tithes of Hindon was received by the chaplain and by 1864 marriages were being performed in the church. The perpetual curacy was therefore sometimes styled a rectory (fn. 597) until in 1869 Hindon became a district chapelry and the living became a vicarage. (fn. 598) In 1922 the benefice was united with the benefice of the united parishes of Chicklade and Pertwood. (fn. 599) From then until 1960 the Crown presented alternately and since 1960 has been sole patron. (fn. 600) In 1972 the parish was united with the parish of Chicklade and Pertwood as the parish of Hindon with Chicklade and Pertwood, the benefice of which was in 1976 united with the benefice of East Knoyle. (fn. 601)
The living has never been rich. At the Dissolution the endowment consisted of 20 a. with pasture rights in Milton and East Knoyle and land and tenements in Hindon, all valued at £3 14s. 3d. (fn. 602) The premises in Hindon were restored in 1558 (fn. 603) and in 1636 the chaplain's stipend was only £16. (fn. 604) In the Interregnum the tithes of Hindon as well as the rents from those premises, £49 in all, were paid to the curate. (fn. 605) In 1808 the endowment produced some £60. (fn. 606) In 1821 it was augmented by lot with £400 from Queen Anne's Bounty (fn. 607) but, with a net annual value averaging £75 1829–31, the living remained poor. (fn. 608) It was augmented by the great tithes of Hindon which at least from 1844 to 1869 the rectors of East Knoyle seem to have allowed the chaplains to receive. (fn. 609) The proceeds of the sale of premises in 1868 were invested for the incumbents by the Charity Commissioners. (fn. 610)
In 1636 the chaplain was said to have a house in the churchyard later called the Parsonage, presumably a glebe-house. (fn. 611) In 1680 it was said to need repair. (fn. 612) In 1783 the chaplain lived in Hindon but not in the Parsonage which in 1833 was said to be unfit for residence. (fn. 613) In 1864 there was said to be no glebe-house. (fn. 614) West of the church on land formerly in Chicklade a new house was built in 1950 and enlarged in 1960. (fn. 615)
In 1636 a dispute between the chaplain, Samuel Yarworth, and the governors over his stipend and behaviour led to Yarworth's forcible removal from his house and to a suit in the court of High Commission. (fn. 616) George Jenkins, chaplain during the Civil War, conformed and in 1648 subscribed to the Concurrent Testimony. (fn. 617) In 1662 the church lacked much that was thought necessary for divine worship. (fn. 618) In 1783 it was served by the chaplain John Evans who with his brother James held Sunday services in four local churches. Those at Hindon were held in the morning and afternoon. Prayers were said on two weekdays and the Sacrament was administered at the great festivals to some twenty communicants. (fn. 619) On Census Sunday in 1851 there were congregations of 160 and 240 at the morning and evening services. (fn. 620) In 1864 two Sunday services were still being held but Holy Communion was less frequent than in many parishes. (fn. 621)
In 1553 the dedication was to St. Luke, (fn. 622) but was later to ST. JOHN THE BAPTIST. About 1804 the church consisted of apparently undivided nave and chancel, a south tower the lower stage of which served as a porch, and a small south transeptal chapel against the tower to the west. The tower appears to have been that built at foundation and parts of the nave and chancel may also have survived from that time. The west doorway and window and a south window of the nave were later-medieval, and the south window of the chapel was 18th-century. (fn. 623) In 1836 the church was enlarged to designs of William Gover. (fn. 624) A north aisle was added and a roundheaded window placed in the south wall of the nave at the west end. (fn. 625) In 1870–1 the church was taken down and rebuilt in Early English style to designs of T. H. Wyatt and at the expense of Richard, marquess of Westminster (d. 1869). (fn. 626) The new church has chancel with south vestry, an aisled and clerestoried nave, and a south tower which serves as a porch.
In 1553 there were two bells. Later there were five which with additional metal Abel Rudhall cast into six in 1754. (fn. 627) They were rehung in 1934 (fn. 628) and remained in the church in 1977. (fn. 629)
In 1553 a chalice of 9 oz. was left when the king's commissioners took 2½ oz. of plate. New plate consisting of chalice, paten, and flagon was given under his will by James Ames (d. 1828), a Hindon surgeon. (fn. 630) It belonged to the church in 1977. (fn. 631)
The registers date from 1599. (fn. 632)
The Roman Catholic martyr John Story was chosen M.P. for Hindon in 1547. (fn. 633) In the late 17th century Hindon was probably under the strong Catholic influence emanating from Fonthill Gifford and it housed a small papist community. Papists remained there throughout the 18th century. In the later 18th century, when their leader was Henry Lambert, a surgeon, they were said to be part of the Wardour congregation. (fn. 634)
There were four Protestant nonconformists in Hindon in 1676. (fn. 635) In 1787 a dwelling-house was certified for Independents, (fn. 636) and in 1810 a Congregational church was built near Hindon on land in Fonthill Gifford, claimed as an offshoot by both Warminster and Trowbridge. (fn. 637) On Census Sunday in 1851 there were congregations of 95 and 64 at the two services. (fn. 638) The church was possibly served from East Knoyle in the later 19th century. (fn. 639) By 1977 it had been closed.
A room was certified for Primitive Methodists in 1836 and in 1841 the Providence chapel was built for them behind the south side of the street. A total of 80 attended the two services on Census Sunday in 1851. (fn. 640) In 1896 that chapel was replaced by one, on the north side of the street, (fn. 641) in which services were still held in 1977.
In 1783 poor children were taught at a school supported by William Beckford of Fonthill Gifford. (fn. 642) In 1818 there were also a school supported by George, Baron Calthorpe, presumably that near Hindon on Chicklade land, and three schools for very young children. (fn. 643) In 1822 Lord Calthorpe seems to have enlarged his school to make separate boys and girls schools. In 1833 those schools were attended by some 136 children and there were then three small day- and boarding-schools for 36–40 pupils. (fn. 644) In 1858 there was still another school in the parish, (fn. 645) but in 1864 only Lord Calthorpe's, then a single school at which children stayed until they were twelve or thirteen. (fn. 646) In 1881 it was attended by children from Chicklade and possibly from other parishes. (fn. 647) In 1906 the average attendance was 133. (fn. 648) It had fallen to 74 by 1936. (fn. 649) In 1977 there were seventeen children on the roll. (fn. 650)
Charity for the Poor.
By will proved 1828 James Ames gave an annuity of £10 to the overseers for distribution in bread and clothing to the relieved poor. In 1833 it was distributed in coal. In 1860 the charity's capital was £333. The annual income of £8 6s. 8d. was spent on bread and calico given out on Christmas eve. (fn. 651) The charity was regulated by Schemes of 1913 and 1957. In 1965 twenty people each received 8s. 6d. (fn. 652)