A History of the County of Wiltshire: Volume 9. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1970.
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The parish of Wanborough, 3 miles east of Swindon, is roughly rectangular in shape, some 5 miles long and varying from a mile to 2 miles in width. (fn. 1) Before 1884 a long narrow strip of land to the east, including Earlscourt Farm, was a detached portion of Wanborough situated geographically in the parish of Little Hinton. In the 11th century Wanborough and Little Hinton together formed a single estate, though the charter describing the boundaries is open to suspicion. (fn. 2) A charter of 854 apparently describes the boundaries of Little Hinton, and the Domesday entry suggests that Earlscourt, while formerly attached to Wanborough, had by 1086 been separated from it. (fn. 3) Its subsequent tenurial history renewed the connexion. In 1884 the detached part was absorbed into the civil parish of Little Hinton, (fn. 4) leaving Wanborough with an area of 4,514 a. (fn. 5) In 1964 an area in the extreme north-west of the parish, including Little Nythe and Covingham Farms, was beginning to be developed by the corporation of Swindon as part of its expansion programme. (fn. 6)
Geographically the parish is divided roughly in half, the southern section lying on the chalk downs. The shape of the parish conforms to a pattern found along the scarp slope of the Chalk both westwards into Wiltshire and eastwards into Berkshire, each parish having chalk uplands as well as greensands and clays for meadow and pasture. (fn. 7) Upper Wanborough, around the church, is on an Upper Greensand spur commanding a view north over Lower Wanborough and south over Liddington. The northern half of the parish towards the shallow valley of the River Cole is successively Gault, Lower Greensand, and Kimmeridge Clay. (fn. 8) The chalk scarp rises behind the village, reaching 800 ft. at Foxhill on the parish boundary. Most of the Chalk lies between 600 ft. and 700 ft. Two coombs pierce the eastern boundary between the Ridge Way and the Icknield Way, the larger containing two chalk pits. Below the scarp the land falls gently away to the river, to below 300 ft., and is drained by the Cole, its tributary stream the Lidd, and several smaller streams, providing abundant meadow land and marsh. There is little wood in the parish, although there is evidence of illegal felling during the 16th century. (fn. 9) Stone was quarried at Berrycombe in the 16th century (fn. 10) and marl was taken from Inlands at least from the end of the 13th century. (fn. 11)
Wanborough's reputation as the 'key of Wessex', (fn. 12) the site of two battles between rival Saxon kings, (fn. 13) is not accepted by modern scholars, (fn. 14) but the southern boundary follows the 'Folces Dic', or 'Thieves Way', the ancient hundred boundary, (fn. 15) which may represent the march between tribal spheres of influence. Archaeological and placename evidence (fn. 16) confirms Neolithic and Bronze Age activity in the south of the parish and Early Iron Age coins have been found. (fn. 17) The parish lies athwart three ancient trackways which run along the line of the chalk downs. The 'Rogues Road', north of the 'Thieves Way', winds along the valley at the foot of the scarp, running south of Earlscourt, through the Breach and Horpit, skirting the Marsh and thence entering Liddington. (fn. 18) The road running west from Little Hinton towards Swindon, passing through Upper Wanborough, follows for part of its course the line of the Icknield, or Ickleton Way, and a mile to the south runs the Ridge Way.
The Roman occupation left considerable traces in the parish. Ermine Street runs diagonally through the whole length of Wanborough, the lower part of the village lying along its route. The Cunetio (Mildenhall) road, branching from Ermine Street, near Covingham Farm, forms part of the western boundary of the parish. At the junction of these roads lies a large settlement which has been tentatively identified as Durocornovium. (fn. 19) Considerable structural remains, for at least two centuries used as a stone quarry, as well as individual finds, including a large coin hoard, attest an occupation from the first century to the end of the Roman period. (fn. 20) Another theory places Durocornovium at Popplechurch in the extreme south of the parish, identifying the Covingham site as a trading site, the other being a staging post. (fn. 21) Pagan-Saxon material has been found in the parish, including a cemetery at Foxhill. (fn. 22)
The later settlement pattern of Wanborough is complex and its scattered nature seems to be of early origin. The position of Upper Wanborough, including the church, on the Icknield Way but west of Ermine Street, suggests that it might be the original nucleus of the village. In this respect Wanborough follows its neighbours to the east, many of which are placed just above the spring line. The pattern of Lower Wanborough was governed to some extent by Ermine Street and the 'Rogues Road', but also by the position of the common land. (fn. 23) The distinction between East and West Wanborough occurs by the end of the 13th century, and suggests that Lower (presumably East) Wanborough was then of reasonable size. (fn. 24) This division persisted for administrative purposes during the 16th (fn. 25) and 17th centuries, although by the 18th century smaller areas, such as Hydes, Foxbridge, and Redlands were being used for the purposes of poor relief. (fn. 26) Some other areas of settlement in the parish probably precede this division: apart from Earlscourt, (fn. 27) Horpit dates from the middle of the 13th century at the latest, and Nythe and 'La Hyde' occur as settlements by the end of that century. Moor Leaze also probably originated at this time, and the Breach occurs as a settlement a century later. (fn. 28)
The sites of several medieval houses lying away from the main areas of settlement are similarly identifiable. Cold Court, with the chapel of St. Katherine, surrounded by a moat and close to the great fishpond, was situated south of the stream known as the Lidd in Wanborough Marsh. (fn. 29) Hall Place, the home of the Polton family at the beginning of the 15th century and of Thomas Brind as late as 1633, seems to have been a little to the east of Lower Wanborough. (fn. 30) The chapel of St. Ambrose, probably attached to the house, has left traces in a field called 'Ambrose', which has visible evidence of disturbance. (fn. 31)
By the later 18th century, before the inclosure of the common, houses in Lower Wanborough were grouped around the edge of the common lands. (fn. 32) These were of irregular shape, straddling Ermine Street and providing, in effect, a large village green. The western boundary of the lands is marked by a line of houses stretching from the Marsh, through Warnage, to the foot of Kite Hill, the southern boundary by Rotten Row, and the eastern by the houses at Horpit. Many of these houses on the fringes of the former common still stand. Along Rotten Row there are three or four of the 17th or 18th centuries, which before inclosure would have faced north across the common. At Horpit, Elm Farm, a thatched stone-built farm-house, dates from the 18th century and close by there are one or two other houses with thatched roofs probably of 17th- or 18th-century date. There are also a few houses of about the same period in that part of Lower Wanborough which lies along Ermine Street at the bottom of Callas Hill. Among these are two thatched inns, the 'Plough' and the 'Harrow', both of which stand at right-angles to the road and were no doubt once of some importance as coaching inns. During the 19th century there was some expansion of Lower Wanborough along Berrycroft Row and northwards along Ermine Street.
The village of Upper Wanborough, which lies to the east of the church, contains buildings mostly of the 18th and 19th centuries but there are a few thatched cottages of earlier date. Kite Hill, which runs parallel to Ermine Street and is one of the roads linking Upper and Lower Wanborough, was built up with council houses between the two World Wars. In the mid 20th century there has been some private building development in Upper Wanborough on lands belonging to the former Warnage Farm. In 1968 there was a village shop in Upper Wanborough but the post-office was at Lower Wanborough.
The scattered settlement pattern necessitated a network of roads and tracks particularly across the meadows and common lands in the north of the parish. Thus a track from Berrycroft Row led north through Foxbridge to Swanhill and then west to the parish boundary at Wick Lane. This was also the line followed by the fencing around pasture land during the 16th century. (fn. 33) A green lane leading north from the bottom of Kite Hill, still clearly to be seen in the 1960s, joined the track at Berrycroft Row. Another track, since disappeared, linked Horpit with West Town, Little Hinton, in the 18th century. (fn. 34)
Wanborough, which was assessed as a whole, was the fifth most highly-rated fiscal unit in the county in 1334. (fn. 35) There were 201 poll-tax payers in 1377, making the parish the largest unit in the hundred of Thornhill. (fn. 36) In 1545 there were 5 tax-payers to the Benevolence of that year and to the subsidy of 1576 Wanborough contributed £4 15s. (fn. 37) In 1801 the population was 793, rising to over a thousand in 1831; partly as a result of emigration to Canada, the figure fell, amounting to 764 in 1911. By 1961 with many people who worked in Swindon making their homes in Wanborough, the figure had risen again to 972. (fn. 38)
Thomas Langley, Vicar of Wanborough (1563– 1581), was chaplain to Archbishop Cranmer in 1548 and a member of the Geneva congregation in 1556. He wrote an abridged version of Polydore Vergil, a treatise on the Sabbath translated from the Italian, and various Latin verses. (fn. 39) Sir Charles Hedges (d. 1714), lord of the manor of Wanborough by 1704, was a judge of the Admiralty Court, Secretary of State (1700–6), and a judge of the Prerogative Court of Canterbury. (fn. 40) William Sandys Wright Vaux (1818–85), son of William Vaux, Vicar of Wanborough, was Keeper of the Department of Coins and Medals at the British Museum (1861– 1870). (fn. 41) A. D. Passmore (d. 1958), the Wiltshire antiquary, lived in the parish. He contributed many articles to the Wiltshire Archaeological and Natural History Magazine and made a large collection of antiquities. (fn. 42)
Manors and Other Estates.
According to a charter purporting to be of the time of Stigand, Bishop of Winchester (c. 1043–53), the area of the present parishes of Wanborough and Little Hinton formed part of that bishop's estates. (fn. 43) The manor of WANBOROUGH was still held by the Bishop of Winchester in 1086, and was then assessed at 19 hides. (fn. 44) In 1166–7 the Count of Perche was holding the manor. (fn. 45) This was Rotrou (III), son of Rotrou (II) by Hawise, sister of Patrick, 1st Earl of Salisbury. He may have inherited the property through his mother, or possibly through his grandfather, Geoffrey (II), Lord of Mortagne. (fn. 46) Rotrou (III) died in 1191 and was succeeded by his son Geoffrey (III); the sheriff rendered £4 three years later for the new count's lands in Aldbourne and Wanborough. (fn. 47) Geoffrey (III) died in 1202 and his son Thomas was killed at the battle of Lincoln in 1217, fighting for Prince Louis. His lands were taken into royal hands, but almost immediately Wanborough and other properties were granted to William Longespée, Earl of Salisbury, the king's uncle. (fn. 48) The overlordship then descended like that of the manor of Trowbridge. (fn. 49) In the same way it passed in 1366 to John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster, and became parcel of the Duchy of Lancaster when John's son became king in 1399. (fn. 50)
In 1086 Richer held a hide of land at Wanborough of the Bishop of Winchester. (fn. 51) By 1242–3 Stephen Longespée, nephew of William, Earl of Salisbury (d. 1250), held the manor of his uncle. (fn. 52) Stephen died in 1260 and his heirs were his two daughters by Emily, formerly Countess of Ulster (d. c. 1276), namely Ela, wife of Roger la Zouche, and Emily, wife of Maurice FitzMaurice. (fn. 53) The manor passed to Emily and in 1314 was settled upon her for life with successive remainders to Thomas, Earl of Lancaster, and Robert de Holand and Maud his wife, granddaughter of Ela la Zouche. (fn. 54) Emily died in 1331 and the manor passed to Maud, then a widow. (fn. 55) At Maud's death in 1349 the manor descended to her son, Sir Robert de Holand. (fn. 56) His heir at his death in 1373 was his granddaughter Maud, wife of John, Lord Lovel of Titchmarsh (d. 1408). From 1399 Lord Lovel held of the Duchy of Lancaster in right of his wife, who survived him until 1423. (fn. 57) Maud's grandson, William, succeeded to the estate and died in 1455 seised of Wanborough jointly with his wife Alice, later wife of Ralph Boteler, Lord Sudeley. (fn. 58) Alice survived until 1474, to be followed by her grandson Francis, later Viscount Lovel, who was attainted for high treason in 1485. Between 1485 and 1511 the forfeited lands were farmed first by Sir John Cheney and then by Sir Richard Eliot, but in 1511 the manor was granted to Sir Edward Darell. (fn. 59)
This grant was renewed in favour of Darell and his wife in 1512 to form her jointure, and was again confirmed in 1515. (fn. 60) Darell died in 1530; his widow retained the property for her life and was succeeded by Darell's cousin, Edward Darell of Littlecote (in Ramsbury). He died in 1549 leaving the manor in the hands of his widow Elizabeth, since William Darell, his son and heir, was a minor. (fn. 61) By 1561 Elizabeth had re-married and William had succeeded to the property. (fn. 62) At his death his brother, Thomas Darell of Hungerford (Berks.), acquired the manor, and died in 1591 leaving a son, John, as his heir. (fn. 63) John Darell (cr. baronet in 1622), of West Woodhay (Berks.), sold the manor to Sir Humphrey Forster of Aldermaston (Berks.) in 1628. (fn. 64) In 1648 Forster sold it to Henry Gooding of Henley (Berks.). (fn. 65) Henry was succeeded by his son George, who still held the property in 1700. (fn. 66) Four years later it had been acquired by Sir Charles Hedges who retained it until his death in 1714 when he was succeeded by his son William. (fn. 67) Thomas, William's eldest son, sold the manor in 1768 to Samuel Sharpe of Bath. In the following year Sharpe settled it upon his son Samuel (d. 1781), who took the additional name of Pocklington. In 1800 Samuel's eldest son Henry Sharpe Pocklington sold the manor to John Strange, of London, and in 1809 Strange sold it to James Bradford of Swindon. Two years later Ambrose Goddard, lord of the manor of Swindon (d. 1815), purchased the manor from Bradford. Thenceforth Wanborough followed the same descent as Swindon until 1931 when the Goddard lands were broken up and sold in lots. (fn. 68)
By a spurious charter dated 854 Ethelwulf, King of the West Saxons, made a grant of land to the church of St. Peter and St. Paul at Winchester, which comprised an area covered by the modern parish of Little Hinton. This included that estate later known as the manor of EARLSCOURT which until the 19th century was a detached part of Wanborough. (fn. 69) The property was apparently in the hands of Stigand, Bishop of Winchester (c. 1043– 1053), (fn. 70) but before the Conquest came into the hands of Earl Odo. (fn. 71) In 1086 it was held by Stephen the Carpenter, one of the king's serjeants. (fn. 72) The overlordship probably descended with that of the manor of Wanborough, for it was in the hands of Geoffrey (III), Count of Perche, at the beginning of the 13th century. (fn. 73) Ela, daughter of William Longespée, lord of the main manor, acquired it by 1228–9 as part of a settlement made between herself and Humphrey de Bohun, Earl of Hereford. (fn. 74) It was held by the earl in 1275. (fn. 75) At the death of the earl's direct descendant, Humphrey, in 1372, Earlscourt formed part of the inheritance of Mary de Bohun, one of his two daughters. (fn. 76) Her marriage to Henry Bolingbroke brought the overlordship to the Duchy of Lancaster and thence to the Crown.
In 1195 Stephen of Earlscourt was holding Earlscourt when his house was burned down. (fn. 77) He was later said to hold a third part of half a hide there of the gift of Geoffrey (III), Count of Perche. (fn. 78) By 1275 the land was held by Richard of Earlscourt. (fn. 79) In 1316 it was found by inquisition that Peter Doygnel and Agnes his wife held the property, with reversion to Peter, son of Thomas le Blount. But by the time of the inquisition the Doygnels and Peter le Blount were dead, and the land had passed to John, son of Nicholas de Cotteleye. (fn. 80) For the rest of the 14th century the descent of Earlscourt is obscure. In 1372 Gilbert Spencer was tenant; by 1381 John Garton and his wife, Maud, held the land. (fn. 81) It was in the hands of John, Lord Lovel, lord of the main manor, by 1402. (fn. 82) Lovel died in 1408 and his heir John was given livery. Three years later he successfully defended his right to the property against the heirs of Sir John Roches. (fn. 83) Lovel died in 1414, leaving the manor in the hands of his mother, Maud, who died in 1423 seised of Earlscourt held as of her manor of Wanborough. (fn. 84) In 1428 Maud's grandson, William, who had succeeded to both properties, had also taken actual possession, the lands having earlier been leased to William atte Welde. (fn. 85) Earlscourt was then settled on Lovel's second son, William, who married Eleanor Morley, daughter and heir of Robert, Lord Morley. (fn. 86) Lovel was summoned to Parliament in her right as William Lovel of Morley and died in 1476. (fn. 87) His son Henry (d. 1489) left as his heir Alice, whose second husband was Edward, second son of Thomas Howard, Duke of Norfolk (d. 1554). The property seems to have come into the duke's hands, for in 1540 Thomas Hinton of Wanborough had a lease for 21 years of 'a messuage called Erlescote' from the Crown which had lately been obtained from Thomas, Duke of Norfolk. (fn. 88) Hinton died in 1567 leaving Earlscourt to his heir Anthony. (fn. 89) Anthony was succeeded in 1599 by his son Thomas. Earlscourt was settled on his son Anthony (II) on his marriage to Mary, daughter of Sir Thomas Gresham, in 1619. (fn. 90)
The Hintons seem to have left Wanborough before the middle of the 17th century, and thereafter the descent of the property is difficult to trace. William Glanville held it in 1672 when it was leased to William Lancton. (fn. 91) In 1676 the estate, comprising 280 a., passed to John Lowe. (fn. 92) Elizabeth Astley, widow, proved her right to the manor in 1716. (fn. 93) The property seems to have been divided by this time, for the manor was then said to consist of 85 a. By 1780 John (later Sir John) Croft held Earlscourt, while Thomas Liddiard held Lower Earlscourt. (fn. 94) Sir John died in 1797 (fn. 95) and his estate passed to John Croft of Worle (Som.), who died in 1822. (fn. 96) His heirs were his six daughters, four of whom still retained shares in 1843. (fn. 97) James Halls Croft died possessed of the estate in 1876, and was succeeded by Margaret Elizabeth, Baroness d'Etigny. In the same year she sold it to John William Bell of Gillingham (Dors.), who in 1877 sold it to Henry Kinneir of Swindon. Kinneir also acquired Lower Earlscourt, but at his death in 1917 the property was again divided, Earlscourt passing to the tenant, D. L. Manners, and Lower Earlscourt to M. R. Haskins of Wootton Bassett. (fn. 98)
The medieval manor-house was represented in 1965 by Earlscourt Farm. In 1423 the buildings consisted of a hall, two chambers, a barn, a stable, and a sheepfold. (fn. 99) Ponds to the west of the house suggest that it once had a moat. The house of 1965 was L-shaped, mostly of stone, with a stone-tiled roof. The north end of the west wing was originally timber-framed, part of the north wall having exposed framing with ogee braces, close studding, and herring-bone brick panels. The east wing was mid 19th century except for the west end which had a staircase of c. 1700, and a mullioned and transomed window of similar date on the first floor landing. It is possible that the original timber-framed house had an east-west axis; the quality of the framing suggests a substantial house, probably of the mid 16th century. The house was stripped of oak panelling reputed to have been Jacobean (fn. 100) and an oak beam with the initials of Anthony Hinton and his wife is said to have been taken to America. (fn. 101)
The manor of WARDENAGE or WARNAGE originated in the grant of some 60 a. of land made in 1270 by Emily Longespée, widow of Stephen Longespée, lord of the manor (d. 1260), to endow the chapel of St. Katherine. (fn. 102) Further small grants were made about the same time including land at Inland within the parish. (fn. 103) The foundress's executors added lands at Ashbury (Berks.) and at 'Ordestone' (?Bishopstone) in 1280. (fn. 104) Nearly 100 a. were added by Emily's daughter, Emily Longespée, widow of Maurice FitzMaurice, in 1291 (fn. 105) and the next year she made a further grant which included common in the marlpit at Inland, the great fishpond, and all profits of her manor courts. (fn. 106) Additions were made to the estate in 1308 (fn. 107) and in 1329 Robert of Wanborough, clerk, had licence to grant a mill and meadow to the chapel. (fn. 108) In 1332 the land so accumulated seems to have been in the hands of Robert of Wanborough and after his death by 1334 in those of his brother John. (fn. 109) This is probably because both Robert and John were at this time concerned with the proposal to establish a new foundation to pray for members of the Wanborough family. (fn. 110) But by 1336 the estate together with a messuage called 'Colne', which John of Wanborough had inherited from his brother Robert, was again annexed to the chapel and was in the hands of the warden. (fn. 111)
In 1483 Francis, Viscount Lovel, conveyed the estate with the chapel to William Waynflete, Bishop of Winchester, and in the same year the bishop conveyed both to Magdalen College, Oxford. (fn. 112) In 1535 it was described as a manor. (fn. 113) For the next 400 years Warnage or Wardenage was held by the college. In 1922 part of the estate, comprising Moat Farm, Kite Hill Farm, Pond Farm, and the Lynch Farm, was sold to the tenants farming them. (fn. 114) The rest of the estate was sold by the college in 1946 and 1957. (fn. 115) The chief farm-house of the estate, Warnage Farm, probably stood on or near the site of the farm called Underdown Farm, a 19th-century building.
The manor of HYDES seems to have originated in an estate held in 1177–8 by Sewall d'Oseville. (fn. 116) Sewall was still alive in 1210–12, when his holding was described as ¼ knight's fee. (fn. 117) By 1242–3 he had been succeeded by Osbert d'Oseville who held the fee of the Earl of Salisbury. (fn. 118) This is the first mention found of the overlordship which thenceforth descended like that of the main manor of Wanborough. (fn. 119)
The d'Osevilles were succeeded by the St. Amands. Amauri de St. Amand held two carucates in Wanborough in 1275. (fn. 120) He had died by 1286 when his lands were taken into custody for the repayment of debts during the minority of Amauri (II), his heir. (fn. 121) Amauri (II) entered into the estate in 1289 (fn. 122) and was succeeded in 1310 by his brother John. (fn. 123) John died by 1330, leaving his son, Amauri (III), a minor; during the minority the lands were farmed by the Crown. (fn. 124) In 1362 Amauri (III) leased his estate to John atte Hyde and Alice his wife for their lives; and his son, Amauri (IV), confirmed the leases in 1380. (fn. 125) Hyde must have acquired the estate soon after this, for he was holding it directly of the Duchy of Lancaster, the overlords, in 1401–2 and still did so in 1428. (fn. 126) By 1485 it had passed to Francis, Lord Lovel, lord of the main manor, and was forfeited on his attainder. (fn. 127) It then descended with the main manor to the Darells. It formed part of the jointure of Elizabeth Darell whose husband, Edward, died in 1549. (fn. 128) She leased the site of the manor for her life to Anthony Disney, who in turn leased most of the property to Thomas Essex of Chelvey (Berks.). (fn. 129) When Elizabeth's son William came of age in 1561 the manor passed to him and became merged in the main manor. (fn. 130)
The land attached to the church of Wanborough was acquired by Amesbury Priory when it appropriated the church in the later 13th century. (fn. 131) In 1315 the convent took £29 for corn and beans from this estate and a further sum for wool. (fn. 132) In 1341 there were 2 virgates of land in demesne and land and other profits were valued for taxation at £8 12s. 2d. (fn. 133) After the Dissolution the rectorial estate, valued at £19, passed in 1541 to the newly constituted Dean and Chapter of Winchester. (fn. 134) Since 1523 it had been in the hands of Anthony Fetiplace on a lease for 61 years and probably continued to be leased out by the chapter. (fn. 135) In 1639 Henry Hedges became tenant for 21 years. (fn. 136) In 1651 the Trustees for the Sale of Church Property sold the rectory house and 4½ oxgangs of land to John Stanton of London. (fn. 137) The chapter recovered the property at the Restoration and continued to lease it out during the rest of the century. (fn. 138) Sir Charles Hedges, lord of the main manor at the beginning of the 18th century, was among the lessees. (fn. 139) By 1780 Samuel Pocklington, also lord of the manor, was leasing parts of the property known as Parsonage Farm, Lotmead Farm, and part of Nythe Farm. Ambrose Goddard was occupying these farms by 1783 and the rest of the property known as Plain Farm came into Goddard's hands by 1817. (fn. 140) Goddard's grandson, who was also lord of the main manor, became tenant of most of this in 1857 and bought the reversion of the tenancy in 1859. (fn. 141) Lotmead Farm was retained by the chapter and was subsequently transferred to the Church Commissioners. (fn. 142)
The rectory house in 1649 consisted of a hall, a parlour, 2 kitchens, 2 butteries, a dairy house, and 8 chambers. Outbuildings included a barn, stable, and carthouse. (fn. 143) This may already have become the residence of the vicar, and is likely to be the 'mansion house' described in 1672 in similar terms. (fn. 144) The property also included a small tene- ment known as Lynges House near the churchyard. Both existed in 1705. (fn. 145) The house to the east of the church, called Parsonage Farm in 1966, appears to be a square stone house of the early 18th century. It was probably refronted in brick about 100 years later. Traces of timber-framing in the walls suggest that it may be the house referred to in the 17th century subsequently thoroughly remodelled.
Rotrou, Count of Perche, gave a hide of land to Lewes Priory in 1135. (fn. 146) The grant was confirmed several times during the next 25 years. (fn. 147) In 1210 the monks drew rents from the land worth £1, (fn. 148) but there is no trace of the property in the 1535 valuation of their lands. The land was demised by the tenant, Robert son of Roger, in 1169 as security for a loan. (fn. 149)
A small estate granted by Geoffrey (III), Count of Perche, was confirmed to the canons of Bradenstoke in 1207, and consisted of 7s. rent. (fn. 150) Sewall d'Oseville gave the canons a load of grain every Michaelmas. (fn. 151) The rents were assessed at 19s. in 1535. (fn. 152) Stephen Longespée gave to Lacock Abbey 2 a. of his meadow in 'Niweham' c. 1232. (fn. 153) This was granted to John Goddard of Aldbourne in 1540. (fn. 154) In 1545 New College, Oxford, held the farm of certain lands in the parish. (fn. 155) Clement Harding gave some land there to the college, of which he was a Fellow, in 1507. (fn. 156) In 1738 the college leased Knight Moor or Knight's Meadow to Pleydell Goddard. (fn. 157)
Even though the charter of King Ethelwulf to Winchester Cathedral in 854 may not be genuine, it seems likely that Winchester had an estate in Wanborough in the 9th century and that it comprised 20 hides. (fn. 158) By 1086 this had been divided, Wanborough then having 19 hides and Earlscourt a hide and a virgate. Nearly half of Wanborough was then demesne and there was land for 10 ploughs, three of which were on the demesne with 6 serfs. Nineteen villeins and 13 bordars had 5 ploughs. There were 40 a. of meadow, pasture measuring half a league long and 15 furlongs broad, and a mill. Earlscourt had land for 2 ploughs and there were 30 a. of meadow and 8 a. of pasture. (fn. 159)
The terrain of the northern half of the parish was not particularly well suited to open-field farming, and the comparatively small areas between the marsh lands were inclosed into 'crofts' for pasturage by the beginning of the 14th century. (fn. 160) 'Papwellescroft' and 'Balicroft' occur by 1374. (fn. 161) Of the common fields East and West Fields are mentioned in 1270, (fn. 162) both of which lay in the south of the parish, and at the same date there was a meadow, probably common, known as 'Cotsettlemede'. (fn. 163) Beyond their existence little else is known of the fields during the Middle Ages.
The nuns of Amesbury, who held the rectory, were letting their demesne to farm by 1316 (fn. 164) and probably continued to lease it until the dissolution of the house. Their successors, the Dean and Chapter of Winchester, certainly did so. (fn. 165) The demesne of Warnage was leased by 1545, and had probably been so since Magdalen College acquired the property in 1483. (fn. 166) There was very little demesne on St. Amand's manor, most of the property being in the hands of a number of free tenants by 1310. (fn. 167)
A feature of the economy in the late 14th century is the emergence of substantial tenants. The family of FitzWilliam, traceable in the parish from as early as 1318, (fn. 168) was clearly of some standing (fn. 169) and their status required a stone effigy in the church. (fn. 170) The family of Coventry, in existence by 1292, (fn. 171) seems to have acquired part of the manor of Hydes by marriage (fn. 172) and by 1439 Thomas Coventry was described as a gentleman when he stood surety for the keepers of Clatford Priory. (fn. 173) The family remained in the village until the 19th century. (fn. 174) The Poltons of Hall Place were also, evidently, a family of importance. (fn. 175) By the 16th century the family of Brind provided substantial tenants in the parish, Thomas Brind (d. 1559) standing second only to Thomas Hinton of Earlscourt in contributions to the Benevolence of 1545. (fn. 176) Brind was the largest tenant of the main manor by 1547, paying a total rent of nearly £9 for freehold and copyhold properties, amounting to more than a quarter of the total revenue. (fn. 177) By 1559 he was farming the Warnage manor and his son succeeded him. (fn. 178) Thomas Brind the younger headed the subsidy list of 1576 with an assessment of over £11, followed by Anthony Brind with over £8. (fn. 179) The name of Brind continued in Wanborough until 1932. (fn. 180)
By the second decade of the 17th century a clearer picture of the agricultural activities in the parish can be obtained from a detailed survey of the main manor. (fn. 181) There were 15 fields of varying size: the field next Liddington, West Middle Field, Middle Field, and the field next Hinton were the largest, the first three being over 200 a. in extent. Ham Field, Cornmarsh Field, and West Berrycroft were smaller, with some 50 a. each, and smaller still were, for example, Binnland and Hitchen with about 40 a. Even the smallest were divided into strips. West Middle Field, with over 250 a., had at least 370 separate holdings, held by 23 leaseholders and 19 copyholders. Thomas Brind held 18 parcels in this field all on lease, comprising 13½ a. In Binnland and Hitchen together there were at least 29 holdings divided into 77 parcels, and in West Berrycroft 32 holdings in 131 parcels, together with a plot for the hayward. Leaseholds predominated over copyholds save in Swanhill Mead.
Land in the Nythe at the northern end of the parish, and elsewhere, was by this time held by a syndicate of tenants and known as the Great Bargain. The property included meadow land at the Nythe and other lands in the Breach, Cornmarsh, the Hide Field, stretching above the village, and also in the East and West Fields. (fn. 182) There were at least 18 joint tenants by 1628 although it is not clear how many divisions originally existed. The holder of each part was entitled to one lot in the meadow (hence Lotmead), five common leases on the east side of the parish, sheep commons, and common on the lord's down. (fn. 183) These lots were gradually consolidated (fn. 184) and in 1712 half were united in one hand. (fn. 185)
The progress of inclosure is difficult to trace, though at least three open fields were certainly still in existence in 1712. (fn. 186) The inclosure award of 1779 (fn. 187) concerned only the commons and wastes and therefore indicates only the final stage of the process. Consolidation of holdings is reflected in the emergence of individual farms: Cally Farm occurs in 1692, (fn. 188) Hill and Parsonage Farms by 1780, Nythe Farm by 1783, and Plain Farm by 1817. (fn. 189) Between 1780 and 1815 Ambrose Goddard (fn. 190) carried through a piecemeal acquisition of property in the parish. Beginning with parts of Hill Farm and the Nythe in 1780 he acquired, by purchase or tenancy, Cossicle Marsh and Parsonage Farms by 1786, Hill Farm completely by 1790, the farm by the warren by 1798, and Plain Farm by 1817. (fn. 191) Much of this had formerly been in the hands of the Pocklingtons, lords of the manor until 1800; Goddard acquired the lordship in 1815. (fn. 192) Most of these farms lay on the arable land to the south of the village; holdings in the north, mostly grass farms, continued to be small. The Magdalen College estate, which was offered for sale in 1922 but not finally sold until 1957, consisted of seven farms, the largest of 75 a., besides a number of much smaller units. (fn. 193) In 1873 369 a. of this estate were held on a beneficial lease and 272 a. by copyhold. (fn. 194)
Little can be said of the details of agriculture beyond the rearing of sheep, memory of large flocks on the downland persisting to the present century. (fn. 195) Sheep were evidently kept in some numbers by the earlier 13th century. (fn. 196) Pasture for 100 sheep was given to the warden of St. Katherine's chapel in 1291 and it is likely that the donor retained twice as much. (fn. 197) They were still an important part of the economy in the 16th century and at shearing time four tellers were required to number them. (fn. 198) One individual, Thomas Brind, claimed to have feeding in common and pasture for 252 sheep on the lord's down, a claim challenged by the lord of the manor. (fn. 199) On his death in 1559 Brind had over 200 sheep 'on the East Field on the Hill'. (fn. 200) Each shareholder in the Great Bargain had 54 sheep commons as well as a share in the lord's down. (fn. 201) References to shepherds are frequently found in the parish registers, including one to Thomas Horne who was described at his death in 1643 as 'a rich old man'. (fn. 202) In 1692 Alexander Popham was said to have 500 beasts in the parish and Mrs. Mary Hipsley 300, almost certainly sheep, (fn. 203) but a plaintive memorandum in the register of baptisms under the year 1729 suggests that sheep were then a declining interest. The vicar noted that there were about 364 'east side common leases' and that one hundred or more were every year stocked with cattle from other parishes which therefore yielded nothing to the parson 'either by plough or pail'. By this time the village seems to have had more pasturage than was required.
Wanborough's position on the Ridgeway may perhaps in part explain the cattle from outside the parish. In the early 20th century cattle and sheep droves were still remembered, about 800 cattle passing through every week. (fn. 204) An annual cattle fair was then held in the village. (fn. 205) Cottage industries, however, were still concerned with wool, though it was sent to Oxfordshire to be dyed, brought back to be woven, and sent away again for milling. Straw plaiting, blanket and carpet weaving, and soap and candle making were also practised on a small scale. (fn. 206) John Smith (1722–94) and his sons John (1751– 1815), and Thomas, were soap boilers and tallow chandlers, and in their premises at Kite Hill the first meeting of Methodists took place in the village. (fn. 207) Thomas Honeybone (d. 1796), clockmaker, lived and worked in the parish, having a house in the Marsh. (fn. 208)
In 1252 Stephen Longespée was granted a fair on Whit Monday and for the two days following. (fn. 209) By 1798 a fair was held on 4 September. (fn. 210) This was usually followed by revels, back-sword play, and performances by the village band. (fn. 211) At mowing time a celebration was held at Lotmead when the lord of the manor wore garlands of flowers and the mowers were given beef and garlic. By the 17th century horse-racing was also included in the festivities. (fn. 212) Dobbin Sunday, when the village charities were paid out, was also an occasion for celebrations. (fn. 213)
In 1086 the mill at Wanborough was worth 5s. (fn. 214)
A mill-pool was mentioned in 1292. (fn. 215) William atte
More proved his right to a mill and other property
in 1305 against Richard Costard, but the latter subsequently regained possession. (fn. 216) The estate of
Amauri de St. Amand in 1310 included a water-mill
held by Ellis Bede and a windmill. (fn. 217) In 1318 Bede's
son, John, gave the mill to his sister, who released
it to John FitzWilliam of 'Bydemylle' as security. (fn. 218)
In 1321 it came into the hands of Robert of Wanborough, who gave it in 1329 to the warden of
St. Katherine's chapel. (fn. 219) This mill was near the
chapel, between the mill-pool mentioned in 1292
and the great fishpond which it fed, the water then
flowing into the moat around the Longespée manor
house. (fn. 220) In 1363 Henry Podyfat granted two mills
on lease to John Coventry, and the property
remained in the Coventry family until 1502. (fn. 221) John
Yate, who then acquired part of the mill, was still
in possession in 1509; Thomas Yate sold a mill and
a fishery to Thomas Brind in 1549 for £340. (fn. 222) The
Brind family retained their interest until 1577, when
it passed to Alexander Staples, and then to Thomas
Fisher. (fn. 223) The mill, together with lands in Liddington, passed through several hands during the later
years of the 17th century, and in 1731 was sold to
William Stanley for £400. (fn. 224) The property then
consisted of a mill-house, a water grist-mill and millbank, and a little orchard by the close called Court
Close, and two closes called Mill Closes. By his will
dated 1743 Stanley declared that Edward Stanley
could have the mill if he wished at the price of
£400. (fn. 225) Thomas Robins (d. 1760), miller at Wanborough, received the commendation on his tombstone:
God works his wonders now and then, Here lies a miller, an honest man . . .
The succession of millers ended with the death of Herbert Reynolds in 1876. (fn. 226)
Court rolls of the manor of Wanborough survive for 1564–6, 1571, and 1585, (fn. 227) and there is a printed edition of rolls for 1649–76, 1690–6, 1700–6. (fn. 228) During the 16th century courts seem to have been held four times a year, alternately courts baron and views of frankpledge, and these were presided over by a steward. The officers of the court consisted of a bailiff, a constable, a tithingman, and a hayward, together with two assessors of fines. By the later 17th century courts baron and views of frankpledge were usually combined and were held, for the most part, annually. By 1650 (fn. 229) a carner ('carnerius') and ale-taster was regularly appointed in the court and continued, like the other officers, at least until the beginning of the 18th century. Encroachments, strays, the maintenance of ditches and hedges, the admission of tenants, probate, and petty infractions of the peace provided the main business of the courts in the 16th century. Later, tenancy business became less important, while more detailed control was maintained over the exercise of common rights.
Magdalen College, Oxford, held a court baron for their manor of Warnage at their pleasure. (fn. 230) Records of the court have survived in general court books for 1536, 1549–63, 1611, 1659–69, 1682–91, 1703– 15, 1727–43, and 1764–77. (fn. 231) The court, under a steward, was held annually during the 16th century, irregularly during the 17th, and biennially during the eighteenth. Special courts might be summoned at other times to take surrenders. Business consisted principally of tenancy changes and the levy of entry fines and heriots. Wills and administrations were occasionally dealt with and inventories taken. Only occasional orders were recorded for making improvements or dealing with encroachments. No manorial officers were appointed.
Two surveyors of ways were employed by the vestry by 1611, and ten years later these were responsible for the east and west sides of the parish respectively. (fn. 232) By 1736 their number had increased to four. (fn. 233) In 1721 a man agreed in the vestry to maintain and repair a number of gates, a stile, and a bridge in the parish. (fn. 234) By 1735 the vestry had appointed two overseers of the poor. (fn. 235) Others were sometimes added for particular areas: in 1745 the two overseers were aided by three others for Hydes, Foxbridge, and college lands. (fn. 236) By 1788 there was a poorhouse in the village at a place unknown, under the charge of the parish officers. (fn. 237) Between 1816 and 1824 expenditure on the poor varied between £723 in the former year and £1,965 in 1819. (fn. 238) The average expenditure for 1833–5 was £1,097. (fn. 239)
The church of Wanborough with its tithes and some land attached to it was among those granted by St. Osmund to Salisbury Chapter in 1091. (fn. 240) It was still held by the chapter in 1146, but apparently not in 1158. (fn. 241) The advowson was presumably included in the grant of the church to the chapter but its descent over the next 200 years is obscure. It may have passed to the overlords of the main manor of Wanborough, the counts of Perche, and from them to the Cluniacs of Nogent-leRotrou (Eure-et-Loir), for whom the counts had a special devotion. (fn. 242) It was not among the possessions of that house confirmed in a bull of 1182, (fn. 243) but in 1290 the Prioress of Amesbury asserted that Nogent-le-Rotrou had held the advowson of Wanborough for 100 years and had then granted it to her. (fn. 244) She was at the time claiming it against the lord of the manor, Stephen Longespée, who had, she alleged, wrongfully presented to the church some years earlier. (fn. 245) Six years later, however, in 1296 it seems to have been established that the advowson belonged to the overlords of Wanborough, for that year the Earl and Countess of Lincoln conveyed it to Amesbury Priory. (fn. 246) The rectory was probably appropriated by the priory shortly after this. (fn. 247) In 1305 the abbey of Fontevrault, the mother house of Amesbury, unsuccessfully claimed to present a vicar to the church. (fn. 248) Amesbury continued to present until the Dissolution, although in 1523 the convent leased the advowson with the rectory to Anthony Fetiplace for 61 years. (fn. 249) After the Dissolution rectory and advowson were granted in 1541 to the Dean and Chapter of Winchester. (fn. 250) John Snowe of Wilcot and Ellis Wyn of Winchester presented in 1543 and 1551 respectively, probably as farmers of the rectory. (fn. 251) In 1639, however, the lease of the rectory estate to Henry Hedges expressly excluded the right of presentation. (fn. 252) The queen was patron by lapse in 1583. (fn. 253) The chapter continued as patrons until 1908 when they transferred their rights to the Lord Chancellor. (fn. 254)
In 1291 the appropriated rectory was valued for taxation at £20 (fn. 255) and it was reckoned to be worth the same in 1535. (fn. 256) At the later date payments of 5s. 5d. to the lord of the manor and 20s. to the Vicar of Wanborough were charged upon it. In 1341 a ninth of the value of corn, wool, and lambs was reckoned to be £15. (fn. 257) The tithe of certain meadows valued at £6 6s. 8d. also belonged to the rectors at this date. During the 16th and 17th centuries the great tithes were leased by the lessees of the rectory estate. In 1649 the tithes due to the farmer of the estate were valued at £135 12s. 6d. and comprised all the great tithes in the parish except those from Earlscourt and Hide Field, which belonged to the vicar. (fn. 258) All the rectorial tithes were extinguished by the Inclosure Act of 1779 when land was allotted to the appropriators in their stead. (fn. 259)
Some land was already attached to the church when it was granted to Salisbury Chapter in 1091. (fn. 260) In 1341, by which date the church had been appropriated by Amesbury Priory, it was reckoned that the rectorial estate with all its profits was worth £8 12s. 2d. (fn. 261) In 1649 it comprised 69 a. of arable, 11a. of pasture, a rectory house and farm buildings, 2 cottages, and grazing for 23 cows or horses. It was valued at £180 but was charged with certain payments totalling £23. (fn. 262) An account of the descent of this property is given above. (fn. 263)
In 1291 the vicarage was valued at £5. (fn. 264) In 1535 its value, which lay in land, tithes, a payment of 20s. from the rector, and other emoluments, was reckoned to be £21 10s. 6d. net. (fn. 265) It was valued at £100 in 1649 (fn. 266) and in 1835 the average net income of the benefice was £375. (fn. 267) By 1649 besides the lesser tithes, the vicar had the great tithes of Earlscourt and Hide Field (fn. 268) and by 1672 he also had the great tithes from a few other scattered fields. (fn. 269) All the vicarial tithes, except the great tithes from Earlscourt and Hide Field, were extinguished by the Inclosure Act of 1779 when land was given as compensation. (fn. 270) The tithes from Earlscourt and Hide Field were commuted for a rent-charge of £25 2s. 9d. in 1843. (fn. 271)
Most of the vicar's glebe in 1672 lay in East Field and amounted to over 30 a. (fn. 272) By 1887 the acreage had increased to 84 a. (fn. 273) Further additions were made before 1912, principally by the purchase of Mount Pleasant Farm in Little Hinton. (fn. 274) In 1925 the Ecclesiastical Commissioners purchased 165 a. of glebe for £4,050. (fn. 275)
In 1668 it was said that a former vicar had allowed the vicarage house to fall into disrepair and had added to it without licence from the bishop. (fn. 276) The house was said to be in good repair in 1686. (fn. 277) In 1812 the curate was living in the vicarage house which was described as 'new and small'. (fn. 278) The vicarage house of 1966, built in part of the grounds of the early-19th-century house, was designed by Oswald Brakspear and erected in 1959. (fn. 279)
At a visitation in 1584 the minister was reported for not wearing a surplice. (fn. 280) Two years later the offence was again noted. (fn. 281) Not until 1595 apparently was the fault remedied when the churchwardens paid 10s. to the incumbent of Little Hinton for a surplice. (fn. 282) In 1668 the churchwardens presented themselves for failing to provide a Book of Homilies and a Book of Canons. (fn. 283) The homilies were still wanting in 1674. (fn. 284) Preachers at the church in 1686 were said to be so well known that it was unnecessary to keep a register of their names and licences. The vicar at the time was resident and had a curate. The parishioners attended well on Sundays and other days, as commanded by law, but not on saints' days. Most behaved with decency during service except two or three old men who, in cold weather, wore their hats during the sermon. (fn. 285) A century later services were held on Sunday mornings and afternoons and prayers were said on Wednesdays and Fridays before Sacrament Sundays. Communion was celebrated five times a year when 20 or 30 people attended. The church was then served by a curate who lived in Swindon; the vicar lived at Chiddeston (Hants). (fn. 286) In 1812 the church was served by a resident curate who also served the church of Little Hinton. Services were then held only once on Sundays in winter, but twice in summer. (fn. 287) Some 30 persons attended Communion four times a year. By 1851 services were held on Sunday mornings and afternoons, and on Census Sunday that year 180 people were present in the morning and 200 in the afternoon. (fn. 288)
In the 15th century there was a chantry with a priest at the altar of St. Mary in the church. In 1434 Nicholas Palmer and Agnes his wife released the advowson of this to Sir Walter Hungerford and others. (fn. 289) Churchwardens' accounts for 1530–1640 and 1735–68 survived until the 19th century and were transcribed. (fn. 290) They include information about various lights in the church which were supported either by alms or property. In c. 1541–2 All Souls light was endowed with 4s., 2 sheep, and a lamb. (fn. 291) Somewhat later Our Lady's light had, besides a small sum of money, the income from a few sheep and a cow. (fn. 292) By 1566 the churchwardens were responsible for a church house which was let for 6s. 8d. (fn. 293) and from 1591 they accounted regularly for the Whitsun church ale. (fn. 294)
The church of ST. ANDREW occupies a commanding position at Upper Wanborough, the ground falling away steeply to the south and west. It is built largely of local chalk-stone and consists of a chancel with a vestry to the north of it, an aisled nave, north and south porches, and a west tower. It possesses some of the features of a cruciform plan, having an extra bay between nave and chancel, divided from both by transverse arches. Above this bay or 'crossing' rises a slender hexagonal tower with a stone spire. Flanking the crossing are small 'transepts', which are divided from the aisles by arches but do not project beyond their outer walls. The south transept contains an original piscina and is now used as a chapel with a modern dedication to St. Katherine. Above the crossing small additional arches to north and south help to provide a square support for the tower. Both tower and spire have windows on each face, giving light to the area below. All this work dates from the 14th century when the rest of the nave, which is of four bays, was also rebuilt. It is possible that the curious arrangement between nave and chancel perpetuates the plan of an earlier cruciform church. The only survivals from the earlier building are the Norman font and some re-used stones in the walls of the nave. It has been suggested that the north doorway of the nave, with its elaborate 14th-century carving to arch and jambs, was brought from the former chapel of St. Katherine at Wanborough. (fn. 295)
The chancel, the north porch, and the embattled west tower of three stages were built in the 15th century. A brass plate on the tower records that it was begun in 1435, mentioning Thomas Polton, his wife Edith, and others as benefactors. Various legendary explanations have been given for the existence of two towers to the church, one at each end of the nave. It was not uncommon, however, for imposing west towers to be added to parish churches in the 15th century, largely in order to accommodate the number of bells then thought necessary. (fn. 296) In the case of Wanborough the earlier and smaller tower may have continued to house the sanctus bell. The present chancel is of later-15thcentury date and it is possible that a rebuilding of the nave in the same style, involving the demolition of the central tower, was contemplated but never carried out. At some period after the west tower was in existence the nave roof was given a lower pitch; (fn. 297) it may have been at this time that a shallow clerestory was added. The clerestory no longer contains windows although one window on the north side survived into the 19th century. (fn. 298)
A restoration of the church was carried out in 1887 during which internal whitewash and plaster were removed, revealing 15th-century wall paintings; (fn. 299) one of these, depicting the Entry into Jerusalem, has been preserved on the north wall of the nave. Monuments in the church include a brass with figures of Thomas Polton and his wife Edith (both d. 1418) and a mural tablet with a long inscription which probably commemorates Anthony Hinton (d. 1598). (fn. 300) A tablet in the vestry is in memory of Thomas Gray (d. 1725). Housed in the south porch are two incomplete stone effigies of the 14th century. A painted notice in the north porch requests all 'females' to take off their pattens on entering the church.
In 1370 the church possessed a portas, a psalter, and a corporal which had recently been stolen by a former servant of the vicar. (fn. 301) The king's commissioners took 17 oz. of plate in 1553 and left a chalice weighing 9 oz. (fn. 302) In 1966 the plate comprised a chalice and cover of 1577, a paten of 1690, and a flagon of 1615, the gift of Martha Hinton of Earlscourt. (fn. 303)
Four bells and a sanctus bell were delivered to the king's commissioners in 1553. In 1966 there were 6 bells and a sanctus bell. Three dated from the later 17th century, two from the 18th century, and one from 1950 when all the bells were recast or retuned. The sanctus bell dates from 1783. (fn. 304) The registers begin in 1582 and are complete except for the years 1653–65 in the register of baptisms, 1651– 1665 in the marriage register, and 1653–65 in the burial register. (fn. 305)
A chapel dedicated to St. Katherine was founded in 1270 by Emily Longespée (d. c. 1276), widow of Stephen Longespée, lord of the manor. (fn. 306) She endowed it with a small estate to support two chaplains and a clerk who were to say matins and vespers and celebrate mass daily. (fn. 307) The senior chaplain was apparently appointed for life and was called warden, the other was said to be 'elected'. (fn. 308) Further small grants followed, including some land for extensions to the chapel. (fn. 309) In 1280, when more land was granted, another priest was added who was to spend 1 mark each year upon clothing the poor and was to distribute 20s. in alms. (fn. 310) In 1329 more property was granted by Robert of Wanborough for the maintenance of another chaplain. (fn. 311) At the time of Robert's death in c. 1334 there seem to have been proposals to use some of the land for a new foundation to support two chaplains either in the parish church or in St. Katherine's chapel, to pray for the overlord of the manor, for John of Wanborough, Robert's brother, and the souls of Emily Longespée, Robert of Wanborough, and Robert of Hungerford. (fn. 312) Nothing more is heard of these proposals and in 1336 the chapel's endowments were maintaining two chaplains and a warden following the rules of the original foundation and celebrating mass for the Bishop of Salisbury and members of the Wanborough family. (fn. 313) Obits were also kept in the chancel of the chapel for Emily Longespée and Robert of Wanborough. (fn. 314)
By agreement with the rectors of the parish church offerings made at the chapel could be retained on condition that none of the parishioners was admitted to the sacraments. (fn. 315) In 1273 the chaplains were exempted from archidiaconal jurisdiction (fn. 316) and at about the same time from all exactions of the overlord. (fn. 317)
The advowson of the chapel descended from the founder to successive lords of the manor of Wanborough, (fn. 318) although in 1361 the Bishop of Salisbury presented. (fn. 319) In 1483 Francis, Viscount Lovel, sold the chapel and its estate to William Waynflete, Bishop of Winchester. (fn. 320) In the same year Waynflete conveyed the property to Magdalen College, Oxford. The last recorded presentation of a warden was made that year, (fn. 321) although college fellows continued to preach there on St. Katherine's Day and at other times. (fn. 322) Offerings were still made there in 1535 (fn. 323) but the chapel was otherwise little used and was probably demolished in 1549. (fn. 324)
The chapel stood within Emily Longespée's court, and a chamber and wardrobe for the priests and for the chapel ornaments were built nearby 'in her courtyard near the marsh on the south side of the granary'. (fn. 325) The wardrobe was built on the south side of the court, with ditches on both sides connected to the marsh. (fn. 326) Access to the chapel in 1292 was by a gate between the 'great fishpond' and the boundary of the warden's property. (fn. 327) It seems likely, therefore, that the chapel was situated on the moated site at Cold Court at the Marsh, more than a mile north-west of the parish church. (fn. 328) It was evidently of considerable size, having a chancel and more than one altar. An inventory of goods taken from the chapel to the vicarage house in 1484 included at least eight service books, a silvergilt chalice engraved with the Lovel arms, various vestments and ornaments, and a casket of relics including the girdle of St. Katherine with her vial of holy oil. (fn. 329)
In 1334 Maud de Holand, great-grand-daughter of the founder, gave a rent of 14 marks from her manor of Market Lavington to the Warden of St. Katherine's to celebrate masses for herself and her husband in the chapel of St. Mary, presumably in St. Katherine's chapel. (fn. 330) After 1368 this rent was payable by Edington Priory. (fn. 331) Magdalen College successfully defended its right to it in 1496 (fn. 332) and the property was valued at £9 6s. 8d. in 1535. (fn. 333)
It has been said that there was a chapel dedicated to St. Ambrose at Hall Place and its existence is supported by the survival of the name as a fieldname. (fn. 334)
In 1660 two couples in Wanborough were presented at the Quarter Sessions as Anabaptists. (fn. 335) In 1668 they were said to have refused to have their children baptized publicly, and to have remained excommunicate for three years. (fn. 336) They were presented again in 1671, 1674, 1683, and 1684, (fn. 337) and were included in Bishop Compton's census of 1676. (fn. 338) In 1686 only one family was presented. (fn. 339) One Roman Catholic was reported in the parish in 1780, (fn. 340) but three years later neither papist nor dissenter could be found. (fn. 341)
Before the end of the century Methodism had taken a hold in the parish and a dwelling-house was licensed for worship in 1798. (fn. 342) It was probably introduced by George Pocock, one of Wesley's friends, and was later supported by Thomas Bush of Lambourn (Berks.). (fn. 343) Preaching was said to have begun in a soap-boiling room owned by Thomas Smith. (fn. 344) Further licences for Methodist meetings were issued in 1799, 1811, and 1814, and in 1818 a Wesleyan chapel was built, licensed in the name of James Spicer. (fn. 345) This chapel had 120 members in 1829. (fn. 346) In 1851 it was reckoned that over the past year there had been an average general congregation of 278 at morning and evening services on Sundays, while those occupying separate sittings numbered 46 at morning and 47 at evening service. (fn. 347) The chapel remains in use. It is a plain building of brick with a cemented front. A schoolroom was added in 1892 and a porch in 1901.
Early in the 19th century an Independent cause began in the parish and a chapel was built in 1806. (fn. 348) This was fostered by John Strange, lord of the manor, who provided a site, and was a member of that family of nonconformists who were so active in Swindon at this date. (fn. 349) At the opening of the chapel preachers came from 'Lavington', Wantage (Berks.), and Devizes. It was under the care of an itinerant minister and a Sunday school was held there. A Mr. Cannon was described as the 'missionary' at this chapel in 1826 and a building for the use of Independents was licensed two years later in the name of Charles Cannon. (fn. 350) In 1829 there were 60 members. (fn. 351) No further reference to this church has been found, however, and it may not have survived for very long after this date. (fn. 352)
In 1829 Thomas Smith was permitted to use his house as a place of worship for Methodists, apparently of the Primitive connexion. (fn. 353) In the same year there were 150 members. (fn. 354) Three licences were issued in 1835 including at least one for Particular Baptists, (fn. 355) who in 1856 opened Adullam Chapel in Rotten Row (Lower Wanborough). (fn. 356) In 1883 this was taken over by the Primitive Methodists (fn. 357) and was eventually closed several years before its demolition in 1965. (fn. 358) It was a plain brick building with stone dressings.
In 1622 Anthony Smith, described as a schoolmaster, was living in the parish, although there is no evidence that he taught there. (fn. 359) By 1686 there was a licensed schoolmaster who was described as a very poor man. (fn. 360) In 1783 the churchwardens reported that there was neither a free nor a public school. (fn. 361) In 1819 there were said to be no endowments for education, but there was a Sunday school of 150 children supported by voluntary contributions, which were then declining 'with the prospect of getting worse every year'. (fn. 362) In 1833 there were two day schools attended by 65 children at their parents' expense, and a Sunday school for 85 children supported by subscription. (fn. 363) In 1852 the site for a school was acquired by the vicar and churchwardens, acting as trustees, aided by a grant of £50 from Magdalen College. (fn. 364) It was to be 'a school for adults and children, or children only, of the labouring, manufacturing or other poor classes' and was to include a residence for the teacher. It was to be run in union with the National Society. (fn. 365) In 1858 it was reported that 'the school is now taught with method and success'. (fn. 366) Fifty pupils were being taught by a certificated master and a pupil teacher in 1859; the schoolroom was reported as good, having a boarded floor and parallel desks. (fn. 367) In 1903–4 there were 201 places available and the annual average attendance was 90. (fn. 368) After the school in Liddington was closed in 1962 the children from that parish came to school in Wanborough. (fn. 369) In 1966 there were 125 children in the school. (fn. 370)
Benefactions recorded on a tablet in Wanborough church show that three separate gifts were made to the parish during the 18th century. William Stanley bequeathed £50 in 1745 for a sermon, and bread and money for the poor. Out of this 20s. was to be paid to 20 poor families not receiving alms who attended church, 10s. was to be given to the minister for a sermon, and the remainder spent on bread. This was to be distributed on the Sunday following the day of Stanley's burial (19 Feb.). In 1747 Margaret Brind gave £100 and in 1748 Mary Broadway bequeathed £20 to the poor, the interest to be given annually to poor widows. (fn. 371) These three sums, together with £9 arrears of interest and about £21 advanced by parishioners, were used to purchase 3½ a. of pasture in the Marsh called the Poor's Closes (also known as the Poor's Mead), producing £10 10s. in 1786. In 1834 this property was let at £12, two fifths of which were distributed to all poor widows in the parish, of whom there were then about 20. The rest was spent on bread, given in church to all the poor, together with 10s. to the minister for a sermon and 1s. to the sexton. The remainder of the rent was distributed to all poor who attended church on Good Friday. In 1881 the trustees appealed successfully to the Charity Commissioners to have the date and place for distribution of bread changed to avoid unseemly disturbances in church. In 1903 these charities were distributed as follows: 10s. to the vicar, 1s. to the sexton, £1 in gifts of 1s. to 20 poor people, and a varying sum in gifts of 4s. to poor widows. The balance was used to buy bread. In 1903 448 loaves were distributed. Bread to the value of £6, marked 'Dobbin' (meaning a small loaf), (fn. 372) was given in 1965; in the previous year the whole charity was worth £45. (fn. 373)
By his will, proved in 1882, John Jenner bequeathed £300 in trust for paupers or labourers to be invested for the distribution of coal. (fn. 374) In 1892 £270 was invested, which produced about £8 in 1903 when there were 54 recipients. In the 1960s the income was distributed every three years. (fn. 375)
Henry James Deacon, a native of Wanborough, bequeathed £500 in 1916 for the benefit of the poor, together with £100 for the repair of the parish church. (fn. 376) This was invested and produced over £15 in 1966, and was given to the poor in need during the year and particularly at Christmas. (fn. 377)
In 1967 an anonymous donation of £500, known as St. Andrew's Wanborough Trust Fund, was made for the relief of needy parishioners. (fn. 378) In the same year the charity yielded an income of £25.