Thoroton's History of Nottinghamshire: Volume 3, Republished With Large Additions By John Throsby. Originally published by J Throsby, Nottingham, 1796.
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SOUTH CLAY Division. BILDESTHORP.
This place in the great survey returned in the time of king William the first, is mentioned only as Soc to Rugford, which before that kings time was the free-hold of Ulf, as many other good lordships were, which by the said king William were made the see of Gislebert de Gand, as this also was, which paid the geld (or tax) for two car. (fn. 1) The land being found sufficient to employ six plows (or six car.) There were thirteen sochm. six bordars, having six car. and four acres of meadow, pasture wood one leu. long, and one qu. broad. There was Soc in Wirchenfeild as much as paid for one car. to the geld. A Berue then waste, and now unknown.
(fn. 2) Galfr. Tregozheld the whole town of Bildesthorpe in demesne of the Soc of Maunsfeld, of the gift of Robert de Greule with his daughter in frank-marriage, and did no service there for it, nor any where else.
(fn. 3) Sir John de Lowdham about 12 E. 2. died seized of six mess. twelve bovats of land, four acres of wood in Bildisthorp, which he held joyntly (as he did many other lands) with Alice his wife, of sir Henry de Beaumont by the service of the sixteenth part of a knights fee, leaving his son John de Lowdham his heir; with which family this land, which afterwards, viz. 29 H. 6. (fn. 4) had the reputation of a manor, descended, as in Lowdham may be seen.
(fn. 5) In a recovery, 17 H. 7. George Fitz-Hugh, dean of Lincolne, and others, claimed against Thomas Cheyne, knight, the manors of Lowdham, Laxton, Bylsthorp, Carcolston, and Hikeling, with the appurtenances in those towns, and twenty mess. five hundred acres, &c.
(fn. 6) There was a Quare Impedit, 16 H. 8. between Godsr. Folejambe, knight, quer. and Anne Cheyne, widow, and Thomas Huddlesten, concerning the advowson of the church of Billesthorp. The Folejambs might possibly keep some interest here from Thomas Folejambe, who married Margaret, the sister and co-heir of sir John Loudham, by whom they had Walton in Darbyshire.
(fn. 7) Elizabeth Vaux, widow, 20 Novemb. 3 and 4 Ph. and Mar. died seized of the fore-recovered lands, William Vaux, lord Harrowdon her son and heir being then of full age. The lord Vaux sold all these lands which were Cheyneys, and this is now the inheritance of sir Brian Broughton, knight and baronet, elder brother of Peter Broughton of Lowdham.
(fn. 8) Gilbert Roos of Laxton had it in 1612, or then abouts.
(fn. 9) The rectory of Byllesthorp was 131. when the lady Chenie was patroness: 'Tis now 5l. 1s. 8d. value in the kings books, and sir Brian Broughton patron.
William Chappel, lord bishop of Cork and Ross in Ireland, spent some time here with Gilbert Benet, rector of this church, during the rebellion, and in it lies buried.
I remember when I passed over the forest, from Nottingham, towards this place, near the rabbit warren of Mrs. Shirebrook, of Oxon, I was shewn a stone, in a field, on the right, which is vulgarly called Robin Hood's p-ss-pot. This stone appears nothing more than the base of a pillar, or cross, which might serve, originally, for a direction stone over this part of the forest. The circumstance of there being an old house near this spot where it is said, before time, was a dwelling much resorted to by bold Robin and his stout men, might give rise to the vulgar tradition.
On the left of this stands a farm house, of a pleasing appearance, belonging to sir Ro bert Sutton, of Norwood near Southwell. The forest all the way hither, is lately laid out in large farms, which are much improving. Arnald lordship takes in a vast sweep.
Bildesthorp lordship is owned by the hon. Lumley Savile, whose seat is at Russord about three miles distant; it is enclosed, and contains about 1300 acres, partly clay, and partly sandy soil. This was sometime the estate of sir Brian Broughton.
The village lies distant from Newark 12 miles, 5 from Southwell, 8 from Mansfield, and 15 from Nottingham. Dwellings about 40, the inhabitants of which, I cannot help observing, appear to live comfortably and happy. In an hall house near the church, it is said king Charles the first was secreted sometime.
The church is a neat little place of worship, dedicated to St. Margaret. The date, on the tower, 1663, towards the building of which, I find, some land was given, in in the field of Ekering, in 1662. Bells 2. In addition to what Thoroton says. above, of Bishop Chappel being buried here, the following I copied from the register of this parish; shewn me, at my request, by the very obliging incumbent of Bildisthorp.
"1649 William Chappel Lord Bishop of Cork and Ross in Ireland, buried the sixteenth of May at Bilstrop, but deceased at Darby the fourteenth of May being Whitsunday and so entered into the eternal rest. Gave 5l. for the Poor."
Bishop Chappells monumental inscription in Bildesthorp Church:
GULIELMUS CHAPELL NATUS LAXTINIÆ IN AGRO NOTTING. A. D. MDLXXII. MANSFEILDIÆ BONIS LTIERIS INITIATUS COLLEGII CHRISTI CAN. PER 27 ANNO SOCIUS COLLEGII S. S. TRINITATIS DUBLIN, PREPOSITUS ECCLESIÆ METROPOLIT. CASSEL; DECANUS. CONCAGIENSIS & ROSSENSIS EPISCOPUS, &c. CHARISMATA, QUÆ (SI QUIS ALIUS) PLURIMA ATQUE EXIMIA A DOMINO ACCEPERATSINGULARI CUM FIDE TUM FELICITATE AD EJUS GLORIAM PUBLICUMQUE ECCLESIÆ COMMODIUM ADMINISTRAVIT. SAPIENTIÆ JUSTITIÆ GRATIÆ DIVINÆ STRENUUS ASSERTOR, CHARITATE IN DEUM AC HOMINES, AMICOS ATQUE INIMICOS, AD CHRISTI LEGEM & EXEMPLUM FACTUS; NOBIS EXEMPLUM & LEX. BONA TEMPORALIA PARTIM PRO CHRISTO PARTIM CHRISTO RELIQUIT. MUNDUM LATERE UT MAXIME SEMPER VOLUIT ITA MINIME UNQUAM POTUIT. ANNUM AGENS 67 PLACIDE SPIRITUM SUUM SERVATORI REDDIDIT DIE PENTECOSTES M.D.CXLIX. ATQUE HIC JUXTA VENERANDUM PARENTEM SUUM POSITUS. DOMINUM FRATREM HABUERAT NATU MINOREM (DUM IN TERRIS AGEBAT) JOHANNEM CHAPPEL THEOLOGUM PARITER INSIGNISSIMUM AC PULPITIS NATUM SED IN CŒLOS TRANSMIGRAVIT: ET CODUNTUR ILLIUS EXUVIÆ, IN ECCLESIA DE MANSFIELD WOODHOUSE.
Near the altar lies some of the Goslin family, one of whom named Charles, died
in 1679. An old stone partly covered by a pew, & much worn, mentions others of
the Chappells, date 1635. Another old stone has a cross. Rectors from the register. Mr. Raworth died in 1713. Richard Berks in 1749. Mr. Wright enjoyed
3 years- Mr. Claudius Deaubaz 8 years. Mr. Brooksbank 12 years. The present rector, the Rev. Thomas Benson, succeeded in 1773. In the church yard,
Little Mary's dead and gone, And was a loving And a precious wife to little John Fletcher.
Patron, the Hon. Lumley Savile. Incumbent, the Rev. Thomas Benson, worth 250l. per ann. King's book, 5l. 1s. 8d. Syn. and Prox. 4s. 10d. Pens. ann. sol. vic. de Southwell 10s. in decim. ter. gleb. &c. Sir Brian Broughton presented in 1714. Humphry Mackworth Prade, esq; and Dame Delves, 1749. Sir George Savile, Bart. 1752, 1760.