Parishes: Hastingligh

Pages 28-32

The History and Topographical Survey of the County of Kent: Volume 8. Originally published by W Bristow, Canterbury, 1799.

This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.


In this section


IS the next parish northward from Braborne, being called in the record of Domesday, Hastingelai, taking its name from the two Saxon words, hehstan, highest, and leah, a field or place, denoting its high situation. Though that part of this parish which contains the village and church is in the hundred of Bircholt Franchise, yet so much of it as is in Town Borough, is in the hundred of Wye, and within the liberty of that manor. There is only one borough, called Hastingligh borough, in the parish.

HASTINGLIGH is situated in a healthy poor country, the greatest part of it very high, at a small distance northward from the summit of the chalk, or Down hills, though it extends southward to the foot of them, and comprehends most of what is called Brabornedowns. The church, and the court-lodge which adjoins the church-yard, are in a valley on the northern side of the parish. The whole of it is a continuation of hill and dale; the soil of the former being chalk, and the latter a reddish earth, mixed with quantities of stones; the whole very poor and barren. There is much open down in it, especially towards the south, though there are in different parts of it, several small pieces of coppice wood. The house in it are about twenty, and the inhabitants about one hundred. There is not any fair held in it.

THE MANOR OF HASTINGLIGH, being within the liberty of the duchy of Lancaster, was formerly part of the possessions of Odo, bishop of Baieux; accordingly it is thus entered in the survey of Domesday, under the general title of that prelate's lands:

In Briceode hundred, Roger, son of Anschitil, holds of the see of the bishop, Hastingelai, which Ulnod held of king Edward, and was then taxed at one suling, and now for three yokes, because Hugo de Montfort holds another part within his division. The arable land is three carucates. In demesne there are two, and two villeins, with six borderers having one carucate. There are four servants, and wood for the pannage of one hog. In the time of king Edward the Confessor it was worth sixty sbillings, and afterwards thirty shillings, now sixty sbillings.

Four years after the bishop of Baieux was disgraced, and all his estates were consiscated to the crown, whence this manor was afterwards granted to the earl of Lei cester, of whom it was held by the family of St. Clere; but they had quitted the possession of it before the 20th year of king Edward III. when Thomas de Bax held it by knight's service of the above-mentioned earl. How long his descendants continued in the possession of it, I have not found; but it afterwards became the property of the Hauts, one of whom, Richard Haut, died possessed of it in the 3d year of Henry VII. holding it of the king as of his duchy of Lancaster. Soon after which this manor passed to Sir Edward Poynings, who died in the 14th year of king Henry VIII. not only without lawful issue, but without any collateral kindred, who could make claim to his estates, upon which this manor, with his other lands, escheated to the crown, where it continued till the king granted it, with the manors of Aldglose, Combe, Grove, Fanscombe, and Smeeds-farm, in this parish, among other estates, to the hospital of the Savoy, in London, which being suppressed in the 7th year of king Edward VI. he gave them that year to the mayor and commonalty, citizens of the city of London, in trust, for the hospital of Bridewell, and St. Thomas's hospital, in Southwark; some few years after which a partition was made of these estates, when this manor, with those of Aldglose, Combe, Grove and Fanscombe, in this parish, with Smeedsfarm, and other lands adjoining, were allotted to St. Thomas's hospital, part of whose possessions they remain at this time, Mr. Thomas Kidder being the present lessee of the demesne lands of the manors of Hastingligh and Aldglose; but the manerial rights, royalties, and quit-rents, the governors of the hospital retain in their own hands.

ALDGLOSE, as it is now usually called, but more properly Aldelose, is a manor here, which at the time of taking the survey of Domesday was part of the possessions of the bishop of Baieux, under the general title of whose lands it is thus entered in it:

In Bilisold hundred, Osbert holds of William, son of Tau, Aldelose. There lies half a suling. The arable land is two carucates. In demesne there is one carcate, and three villeins having half a carucate. In the time of king Edward the Confessor, it was worth thirty shillings, afterwards twenty shillings, now forty shilling. This land is of the fee of the bishop of Baieux, and remained without his division. Godric held it of king Edward, with Bradeburne manor.

Upon the bishop's disgrace four years after the taking of the above survey, all his possessions were confiscated to the crown, whence this manor was granted to Jeffry de Saye, of whom it was held by a family who assumed their surname from it, several of whom were benefactors to the priory of Horton. (fn. 1) But in the 20th year of king Edward III. it was separated in the hands of different possessors. After which, that part of Aldelose which comprehended the manor, passed into the family of Haut, and was afterwards esteemed as an appendage to the manor of Hastingligh, and as such passed with it from that name to Poynings; and thence again, in like manner as has been related before, in the account of that manor, to St. Thomas's hospital, in Southwark, part of the possessions of which it continues at this time. The manerial rights the governors of the hospital retain in their own hands; but the demesne lands are let to Mr. Thomas Kidder.

KINGSMILL DOWN is a small hamlet in the southern part of this parish, in which is a seat, which formerly belonged to a family named Beling, or Belling, which name was till lately in the west window of this church. It afterwards came into the possession of the family of Jacob, and Mr. Abraham Jacob, of Dover, owned it in the reign of king George I. from which name it passed to Mr. John Sankey, whose son Mr. Richard Sankey is the present owner of it.

There are no parochial charities. The number of poor constantly relieved are about ten, casually five.

HASTINGLIGH is within the ECCLESIASTICAL JURISDICTION of the diocese of Canterbury, and deanry of Elham.

The church, which is dedicated to St. Mary, consists of two isles and a chancel, having a square tower steeple at the west end of the south isle, in which is only one bell. The chancel, which is at the end of the north isle, is nearly of the same length with it. The two isles and tower seem very antient, and the chancel much antienter still, having small narrow windows, and several circular arches or door-ways in the outside walls, now walled up. In the east window of the chancel are two circular shields of arms; the first, within the garter, of four coats, Poynings, Fitzpaine, Bryan, and 4th as first; the other shield is obliterated. There is no other painted glass in the church. In the chancel are memorials for several of the Sankeys. In the north isle, on a brass plate, a memorial for John Halke, obt. 1604, and on a brass plate a hawk.

The church was antiently part of the possessions of the family of Poynings, one of whom, Michael de Poynings, of Terlingham, in Folkestone, held the advowson of it in capite at his death in the 43d year of king Edward III. and in his descendants the property of it continued down to Sir Edward Poynings, who died possessed of it in the 14th year of king Henry VIII. holding it in capite by knight's service, and by the service of supporting and repairing the moiety of a chapel and hall in the castle of Dover, as often as necessary, at his own expence, and by the service of paying to the great and the small wards of the castle, on his death, without lawful issue, and even without any collateral kindred, who could make claim to his estates, the advowson of this church escheated to the crown, whence it was afterwards granted to White, whose heirs sold it to Sir John Baker, of Sissinghurst, and he in the 38th year of Henry VIII. conveyed it to the king, and it remained in the hands of the crown till Edward VI. in his Ist year, granted this advowson and three acres of land in this parish, to archbishop Cranmer. Since which it has remained parcel of the possessions of the see of Canterbury, his grace the archbishop being the present patron of this rectory.

The rectory of Hastingligh is valued in the king's books at 10l. 5s. and the yearly tenths at 1l. 0s. 6d. It is now of the clear yearly certified value of 68l. 19s. In 1587 here were communicants seventy-five, and it was valued at seventy pounds per annum. In 1640 the communicants were three hundred and thirty-seven, and the value of it was only sixty pounds per annum.

Church of Hastingligh.

Or by whom presented.
The Archbishop. Henry Wayland, Feb. 13, 1586, resigned 1601.
John Taylor, A. M. Dec. 12, 1601. (fn. 2)
The King. Henry Pybus, A. M. Nov. II, 1647, obt. 1686.
The Archbishop. Thomas Camell, clerk, Jan. 13, 1686.
John Smith, A. M. June 26, 1694, obt. Dec. 1732. (fn. 3)
Robert Cumberland, Feb. 12, 1733, obt. Nov. 6, 1734. (fn. 4)
John Conant, A. M. Dec. 20, 1734, obt. April 9, 1779. (fn. 5)
Nicholas Simons, A. M. July 19, 1779, resigned 1795. (fn. 6)
William Welsitt, S. T. P. 1795, the present rector. (fn. 7)


  • 1. Regist. of Horton priory, cart. 107, 111 to 114.
  • 2. Afterwards S. T. B. and in 1619 presented to the vicarage of Elmsted.
  • 3. Also vicar of Chart Sotton.
  • 4. He was first rector of Fordwich, and afterwards rector both of St. Andrew's and St. George's, in Canterbury, which latter he resigned for this rectory.
  • 5. In 1736 he was presented to the vicarage of Elmsted, which he held with this rectory by dispensation.
  • 6. Also vicar of Elmsted, which he held with this rectory, both which he resigned for the vicarage of Welton, in Yorkshire.
  • 7. Prebendary of Canterbury, and likewise vicar of Elmsted, and of Ticehurft, in Sussex.