Parishes: Tenham

The History and Topographical Survey of the County of Kent: Volume 6. Originally published by W Bristow, Canterbury, 1798.

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Edward Hasted, 'Parishes: Tenham', The History and Topographical Survey of the County of Kent: Volume 6, (Canterbury, 1798), pp. 284-296. British History Online [accessed 21 June 2024].

Edward Hasted. "Parishes: Tenham", in The History and Topographical Survey of the County of Kent: Volume 6, (Canterbury, 1798) 284-296. British History Online, accessed June 21, 2024,

Hasted, Edward. "Parishes: Tenham", The History and Topographical Survey of the County of Kent: Volume 6, (Canterbury, 1798). 284-296. British History Online. Web. 21 June 2024,

In this section


TENHAM, called in Saxon, Teynham, and now frequently written so, is the next parish south-eastward from Bapchild, and gives name to the hundred in which it is situated.

THE MANOR, which comprehends the hundred of Tenham, was given by Cenulph, king of Mercia, at the request of archbishop Athelard, by the description of twelve ploughlands, lying at Tenham, to the metropolitan church of our Saviour at Canterbury; and he made this gift chiefly on account of the archbishop's having given to him in recompence, twelve ploughlands lying at Cregesemeline, which king Offa formerly gave to one of his earls, named Uffa; and the king granted this land to the church of Christ, free from all secular service, except the repairing of bridges and the building of castles.

The above place, called Creges Emeline, has been understood to mean the fleet, or pool of water between the islands of Emley and Harty, in Shepey, now and long since called Crogs-depe, which water parts the royalty of the Swale between Tenham and Faversham, and is likewise the bounds of the hundreds of Middleton and Faversham. (fn. 1)

This manor continued part of the possessions of the church of Canterbury when archbishop Lansranc came to the see in the year 1070, being the 5th of the Conqueror's reign: and on the division which he soon afterwards made of the revenues of his church, between himself and his convent, Tenham was allotted to the archbishop and his successors, for their provision and maintenance.

After which the succeeding archbishops so far improved the buildings of this manor-house, as to make it fit for their frequent residence.

Archbishop Hubert Walter, a most magnificent prelate; the expence of whose housekeeping was esteemed nearly equal to that of the king, resided much at Tenham, where he died in the year 1205, and was carried from thence and buried in his own cathedral at Canterbury.

Archbishop Boniface, anno 44 Henry III. 1259, obtained both a market and fair for his manor of Tenham, the former on a Tuesday weekly, and the latter to continue for three days yearly at the Assumption of the Virgin Mary. Archbishop Walter Reynolds was resident here in the beginning of the winter of the year 1325, one of his instruments being dated from hence. Archbishop John Stratford, who filled the see in the reign of Edward III. entertained that prince here in the month of February, anno 1345, being the 19th of his reign, several of his letters patent bearing date from Tenham in that time.

The manor of Tenham remained part of the see of Canterbury, so far as I have learned, till the reign of queen Elizabeth, (fn. 2) when it was exchanged with the crown for other premises, where it lay till James I. in his 5th year, granted it to John Roper, esq. of the adjoining parish of Linsted, whom he afterwards, in the 14th year of his reign, knighted and created lord Teynham, in whose successors, lords Teynham, the property of this manor has continued down to the Right Hon. Henry Roper, the twelsth lord Teynham, who is the present possessor of it. A court baron is held for this manor.

There are several different customs of the tenants of this manor, principally in the Weald, mentioned in Somner's Gavelkind.

FROGENHALL, usually called Frognall, is a manor situated near the marshes, in the western part of this parish, about half a mile northward of the great London road. It is frequently written in antient records and deeds, Frogenball Valence, by which name Leland likewise distinguishes it in his Itinerary, stilling it in the margin, Frogenable Valaunce, and says, "The maner of Frogenhale, communely callid Frogenolle, yoinith to the quarteres of Thong castelle, in Kent, by Sidingburne, and is of a XLV li. rent by yere: of this very auncient house was a knight that did great feates in France, and is written of—Frogenhalle, that is now, was sunne to one of the Sainct John's doughters, the beste of that stokke: and this Sainct John of Bedforde or Northamptonshir, had VI or VII daughters, that after were very welle maried." By this addition it should seem once to have belonged to the respectable family of Valence, or De Valentia, two of whom were successively earls of Pembroke, from the reign of king Henry III. to that of king Edward II. when it became extinct. In the next reign of Edward III. it was come into the possession of a family, to which it gave both name and residence; for Richard de Frogenhall resided here, and died possessed of it in the 33d year of that reign. In whose descendants residents here, who bore for their arms, Argent, three bars, sable, as they are still remaining in the windows of the Frognall chancel, in this church, and are carved in stone on the roof of Canterbury cloysters, it continued down to Thomas Frogenhall, who leaving no male issue by Joane his wife, daughter and heir of William de Apulderfield, his daughter and heir Anne carried this manor in marriage to Thomas Quadring, of London, who bore for his arms, Ermine, a fess engrailed, gules, and he in like manner leaving one sole daughter Joane, his heir, she entitled her husband, Richard Driland, of Cooksditch, in Faversham, to the possession of it. By her, who was by his first wife, for by his second he seems to have left issue likewise, he had only one daughter Katherine, who became heir to her mother's inheritance, and marrying with Reginald Norton, esq. of Lees court, in Sheldwich, he in her right became possessed of it, at the latter end of the reign of king Henry VII. (fn. 3) His son, Sir John Norton, of Northwood, seems to have sold this manor to Sir Thomas Wyatt, who in the 33d year of king Henry VIII. passed away the manor of Froggynhale Valence, among other premises, to the king (who seems to have been in the possession of it two years before) in exchange for other manors and lands, pursuant to an act passed for that purpose the year before.

It continued but a small time in the hands of the crown; for the king, in his 37th year, granted it to Thomas Green, to hold in capite by knight's service. He was usually stiled Thomas Norton, alias Green, being the natural son of Sir John Norton before-mentioned, the former possessor of this manor. He died in the 6th year of king Edward VI. leaving two sons, Norton Green, who left an only daughter and heir, married to Sir Mark Ive, of Effex, and Robert Green, gent. who was of Bobbing, whose descendants settled in Ireland; on his death this manor descended to his eldest son Norton Green, and again by the marriage of his only daughter and heir to Sir Mark Ive, who was owner of it in the reign of king James I. Soon after which it was alienated to Ralph Clerke, esq. who refided at Frognall, where he died in 1619, and was buried in this church. His son, Ralph Clerke, esq. likewise resided here at the latter end of king Charles I.'s reign, being firmly attached to the king's interest, for which he suffered much, his estates in 1652 being declared by parliament to be forfeited for treason against the estate. However, at the reformation, he became again possessed of them, and this manor continued in his descendants until the 9th year of queen Anne's reign, when Geo. Clerke, esq. the possessor of it, having obtained an act for that purpose, sold it to Mr. Joseph Taylor, merchant, of London, who by his will devised it to his nephew Joseph Taylor, esq. of Sandford, near Great Tew, in Oxfordshire, who had been sheriff of that county, and he died possessed of it in 1733, having by his will given it to his brother William Taylor, esq. whose eldest son, James Taylor, esq. of Sandford, is the present owner of it. He bears for his arms, Quarterly, argent and sable, a cross story counterchanged, in the first quarter, a ducal coronct, gules. There is no court held for this manor.

Archbishop Hubert Walter, who sat in the see of Canterbury at the latter end of king Richard I. and the begining of king John's reign, in his general confirmation of the possessions of St. Gregory's priory at Canterbury, confirmed to it the tenth of wine at Tenham, a kind of donation which appears by others of the like kind to other religious houses, to have been esteemed at that time of no small value.

TENHAM OUTLANDS, alias NEW-GARDENS, is an estate in this parish adjoining to the north side of the London road at Greenstreet, which was part of the demesne lands of the manor of Tenham, and part of the possessions of the Ropers, lords Teynham, but in 1714 it had been alienated from that family, and was become the property of Sir Robert Furnese, bart. of Waldershare. After which it descended in like manner as his other estates in this county, as may be seen hereafter more at large under Waldershare, to his daughter (by his second wife) Catherine, countess of Rockingham, who afterwards remarried with Francis North, earl of Guildford, by whom she had no issue, and dying in 1766, gave by her will this, among the rest of her estates, to him and his grandson, the right honourable George Augustus, earl of Guildford, the present possessor of it.

ON THE SOUTHERN SIDE of the London road, and at the south-east boundary of this parish, adjoining to Norton, is a small hamlet of houses, called LEWSONSTREET, in which there is a capital messuage called Lewson house, which was formerly the estate and residence of a branch of the family of Adye, and several coats of arms of them and their marriages, in painted glass, were remaining in the windows of it till within these few years. Nicholas Adye, esq. resided here in the reign of king James I. on whose death it became the property of his three daughters, by Jane his wife, daughter of Thomas Sare, esq. of Provender, Sarah, wife of John Kennet, and Anne and Martha Adye, who in 1638, alienated this estate, by a joint conveyance, to Mr. James Tong, from which name it passed by sale, in 1676, to Sir James Bunce, bart. of Kemsing, whose eldest surviving son Sir James Bunce, of Kemsing, alienated it in 1714, to Mr. Joseph Hasted, gent. of Chatham, whose grandson, Edward Hasted, esq. of Canterbury, sold it in 1787, to Henry Prat, esq. of Harbledown. He died in 1794. leaving one daughter Mary, (who afterwards married John Scott, esq. of Newry, in the kingdom of Ireland) and his widow surviving; he by will devised it to his widow for life, and afterwards to his said daughter, and they have lately sold the same to Mr. Walker, of Sittingbourn, who is the present possessor of it.

THE LOWER SIDE of the hamlet of Greenstreet, at the 43d mile stone on the high London road, is within this parish, the whole of which, (excepting the small part at the south-east corner, which stretches up to Norton, as has been already mentioned before) lies on the northern side of the road, where about a mile northward of Greenstreet, on a small rise, is the church, and a little further below it the village of Tenham, not far from which are the marshes, which reach to the waters of the Swale, and are the boundaries of this parish on that side. On a small creek in these marshes is Conyers key, much used for the shipping of corn and goods from this part of the county, near which there is an oil mill established, lately belonging to the Best's. The air of this place is very unhealthy, for lying so low, and near so large a tract of marshes, it is much subject to unwholesome air arising from them, so that the inhabitants, are almost always subject to agues and intermittents, and are, in general, but very shortlived. This has been the occasion of that well-known proverb in this part of the county,
He that will not live long,
Let him dwell at Murston, Tenham or Tong.

It is situated in a fine level country, the fields of which are large, and the land exceedingly rich and sertile, like that in the neighbouring parishes in this extensive vale, most of it being what is called in these parts round tilt land, such as has already been described in the adjoining parishes of Bapchild and Tong. It was formerly noted for large plantations of fruit trees; but these are mostly displanted, many of them to make way for hops, of which there are several kindly plantations in different parts of it.

Lambarde says, that this parish, with thirty others lying on each side of the great road from Rainham to Blean-wood, was in his time the cherry-garden and apple-orchard of Kent, and such it undoubtedly continued till within memory. Tenham, he says, was the parent from whence the other plantations issued: for Richard Hayns, fruiterer to king Henry VIII. having observed that those plants, which had been brought over by our Norman ancestors, had lost their native excellence by length of time, and that we were served from foreign parts with these fruits on that account, which he saw no reason for, as neither the soil nor climate here were unequal to the bringing of them to perfection, determined to try a plantation of them here; for which purpose, having, in 1533, obtained one hundred and five acres of rich land, then called the Brennet, and having, with great care, good choice, and no small labour and cost, brought plants from beyond the feas, he furnished this ground with them in rows, in the most beautiful order. These fruits consisted of the sweet cherry, from hence usually called the Kentish cherry; the temperate pippin, hence for the like reason called the Kentish pippin, and the golden renate; (fn. 4) which sorts, especially the first and last, have been long propagated from these in great quantities, throughout the southern parts of this kingdom; but the Kentish pippin is now hardly to be met with, even in this county. Pliny, in his Natural History, book xv. chap. 25, says, cherries were not in Italy before L. Lucullus's victory over Mithridatus, king of Pontus; after which, in the year of Rome, 689, he first brought them out of Pontus thither, one hundred and twenty years after which they were transported into Britain.

In the year 1771 a commission of sewers passed the great seal, for the levels of Tenham, Tong, and Luddenham, which has since, in the usual course of such commissions, been again renewed.

Near the high London road on the left hand, about a quarter of a mile eastward from Greenstreet, there is a field called Sandown, which is encompassed with a bank, from which it rises to an hill, on the summit of which is a small coppice of wood, in which there is a tumulus or barrow, which, by the hollowness at the top of it, seems to have been plundered of its contents. Dr. Plot was of opinion, that this work was thrown up by the Romans. At a small distance westward is a green and hamlet of houses, called Barrow-green, most probably from this circumstance.

THE PARISH of Tenham, or Teynham, gives title of baron to the right hon. Henry Roper, lord Teynham, whose ancestor Sir John Roper, was created lord Teynham, baron of Teynham, by patent, on July 9, in the 14th year of king James I. anno 1616, of whom and his descendants, lords Teynham, a full account will be given in the description of their seat, at Lodge, in the adjoining parish of Linsted.


TEN SHILLINGS yearly, in lieu of corn reserved in the lease, are paid out of the great tithes to the poor of this parish, on St. Thomas's day.

THOMAS BROOKE, by his will in 1669, devised to the poor of this parish, the sum of 40s. to be paid yearly on Christmasday, out of a farm at Deerston street, in Tenham.

The poor constantly relieved are about thirty, casually about seventy.

TENHAM is within the ECCLESIASTICAL JURISDICTION of the diocese of Canterbury, and deanry of Ospringe,

The church, which is large, is dedicated to St. Mary. It is built in the form of a cross, and consists of three isles, a high chancel, and a north and south chancel, having a square tower at the west end, in which are four bells. In the south cross or chancel, called the Frognal chancel, from its belonging to that manor, lie buried several of that family; over John Frogenhall, who died in 1444, there still remains a brass on his gravestone, with his figure habited in armour; several of the Clerks, owners of this manor, lie buried likewise in it. The north chancel is called the Hinkley chancel, from a family of that name, one of whom, John Hencliff, of Tenham, died in 1463, possessed of an estate in this parish, called Jonathan's garden, which he devised to his two sons, on condition that they should glaze a long window on the north head of this church. In this chancel is a stone, with an inscription and figure of a man in brass, for William Wreke, obt. 1533; a memorial for John Sutton, vicar, 1468, and Robert Heyward, in 1509. Weever says, there was a memorial in this church for William Mareys, and Joan his wife, but it has been long since obliterated. There are remains of good painted glass in the windows. Several of them have rich gothic canopies of beautiful coloured glass remaining in them, which had no doubt formerly figures of equal beauty, underneath. In the south window of the high chancel, is the portrait of a girl in blue, kneeling and pointing to a book, which is held by a man, who likewise points with his hand to it; at the bottom was an inscription, of which only remains, Sedis aplce pthonotarii. In the north chancel, in two windows near the vestry, is a figure in an episcopal habit, mitred, &c. with these arms, Ermine, three bars wavy, azure. In the window of the vestry room, a mitre and these arms, Per pale and fess, counterchanged, azure, and argent.

Archbishop Stephen Langton, in 1227, on account of the slender income of the archdeacontry of Canterbury, and the affection he bore towards his brother Simon Langton, then archdeacon, united to it the churches of Hackington, alias St. Stephen's, and Tenham, with the chapelries of Doddington, Linsted, Stone, and Iwade, then belonging to it, which churches were then of the archbishop's patronage; and this was confirmed by the chapter of the priory of Christchurch directly afterwards; at which time this church was let to farm for one hundred marcs. (fn. 5) In which situation this church has continued to this time, the archdeacon of Canterbury being the present patron and appropriator of it.

The chapels above-mentioned, which are all belonging to the archdeaconry, have long since, excepting the chapel of Stone, become independent parish churches, and as such not subject to any jurisdiction of the church of Tenham.

In the 8th year of Richard II. anno 1384, this church was valued at 133l. 6s. 8d. It is now of the annual value of about two hundred pounds, the yearly rent to the archdeacon is thirty-five pounds.

It is a vicarage, and valued in the king's books at ten pounds, and the yearly tenths at one pound, and is now of the yearly certified value of 63l. 13s. 4d. In 1640 it was valued at sixty pounds. Communicants one hundred.

This vicarage was augmented ten pounds per annum, by lease in 1672, between archdeacon Parker and Sir William Hugessen, of Linsted, lessee of the parsonage.

The family of Furnese were afterwards lessees of the parsonage; Henry Furnese, esq. sold it to Henry, late lord Teynham, who, in 1754, alienated his interest in it to Mr. Kempe, the occupier of it, in whose family it still continues.

There was a chantry in this church, which was suppressed, among other such endowments, by the acts of 37 Henry VIII. and 1 Edward VI. In the 2d year of the latter reign a survey was returned of it, by which it appears, that the land belonging to it lay in Frogenhall manor, then the property of Thomas Green, and that the total yearly value of it was only 18s. 8d.

Church of Tenham.

Or by whom presented.
The Queen, during the vacancy Charles Fotherby, S.T.B.Oct. 9, 1595, resigned 1600.
The Archdeacon John Græye, S.T.B. Nov. 9, 1600, resigned 1600. 1600, resigned 1600.
William Hull, S.T.B. March 24, 1600, resigned 1604.
Christopher Pashlye, A.M. Dec. 18, 1604, obt. 1612. (fn. 6)
Edward Hirst, S.T.B. Aug. 1, 1612, obt. 1618.
Isaac Colse, A.M. May 20, 1618.
John Gooffe, A.M. March 4, 1635, resigned 1642.
Thomas Miller, A.M. Nov. 4, 1642, obt. 1660. (fn. 7)
Thomas Cator, A.M. Sept. 13, 1660. resigned 1663.
Henry Eve, S.T.P. August 11, 1663, obt. March 4, 1685. (fn. 8).
Feremiah Taylor, obt. 1688. (fn. 9).
Thomas Stanton, A.B. Oct. 26, 1688, obt. 1708.
James Eve, A.M. July 29, 1708, obt. March 1743. (fn. 10).
John Swinton, A.M. 1743, resigned 1753.
James Allet, A.M. Nov. 7, 1753, obt. July 15, 1776.
William Granger, A.M. Nov. 15, 1776, obt. May, 1778.
John Cautley, A.M. Oct. 1778. obt. March 1, 1797. (fn. 11)
Owen, April, 1797, the present vicar.


  • 1. Philipott, p. 336. See Battely's Somner, pt. ii. p. 67.
  • 2. It appears by the Rolls in the Augmentation-office, that queen Elizabeth granted several parcels of the manor lands to different persons See Roll 1, No. 2.—Roll 3, No. 29, 51, 53. and Roll 4, No. 34.
  • 3. Attested pedigree in manuscript of Norton.
  • 4. Lamb. Peramb. p. 263. See some observations on the above in Dr. Bulleyn's life, Biog. Brit. p. 1020, note [A.]
  • 5. Somner's Cant. p. 156. Append. p. 65.
  • 6. And vicar of Linsted, as was his successor.
  • 7. And rector of St. Mary's, Sandwich.
  • 8. He was likewise vicar of Linsted, where he lies buried.
  • 9. And rector of Buckland, near Faversham.
  • 10. And rector of Midley and of Buckland.
  • 11. And rector of St. Rumbold's, in Colchester, and of the sinecure rectory of Hollingborne.