Mitford Hundred and Half: Letton

Pages 231-233

An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 10. Originally published by W Miller, London, 1809.

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William Earl Warren had the lordship of this town at the survey, of which 9 freeman had been deprived; half a carucate belonged to it, 2 borderers, and 8 acres of meadow, and three carucates, valued iu King Edward's time at 10s. but now at 20s. and there was a church endowed with 12 acres; and it was 6 furlongs long, 5 broad, and paid 15d. (fn. 1)

In 1161, Gilbert de Rysing was lord, and a great benefactor to the priory of Lewes; and Roger, son of Baldwin de Frevil, conveyed in the 11th of King John, to Adam de Moundeford, the rent of 20s. per ann.

Simon de Hecham and his parceners, in 1277, had the homage of Morehow; Richard Fitz-Warren the homage of Frevil, and in the 7th of Edward I. Richard, son of William de Breccles, and Katherine his wife, conveyed to Robert de Westhorp, messuages and lands.

Michael de Poynings and his tenants, had lands held of the Earl of Warren's fee, in the 9th of Edward II. and Robert de Scales, the fourth part of a fee in the 6th Edward III.

In the 20th of Edward III. Thomas Howard, and Robert Curson, held here and in Shipdam, a quarter of a fee of Michael Poynings; and this was in the tenure of John Skeet, and held of the Earl of Arundel in the 3d of Henry IV.

After this, it was in the Bramptons, and came to John Gurdon, Esq. eldest son of Robert Gurdon, Esq. of Assington in Suffolk, by the marriage of Amy, sole daughter and heir of William Brampton, Esq. of Letton, son of Sir Thomas Brampton, who was son of Sir Peter Brampton.

This John was high sheriff of Suffolk, in 1585, and died in 1623, leaving Brampton Gurdon, Esq. his son and heir; and by his 2d wife, Muriel, daughter of Sir Martin Sidley, of Morley in Norfolk, was father of Brampton Gurdon, Esq. living in 1664, who married Mary, daughter of Henry Polsted of London, Gent. by whom he had Brampton Gurdon, Esq. and by his wife, Elizabeth, daughter of Francis Thornhaugh, of Fenton, in Nottinghamshire, left Thornhaugh Gurdon, Esq. father of Thornhagh Gurdon, Esq. by Elizabeth, daughter and coheir of Sir William Cook, Bart. lord of this town.

Lewes Priory Manor.

Gilbert de Rising, in 1161, gave to this priory in Sussex, by deed, (wherein he calls the monks his lords (fn. 2) ) half the soccage of Letton for 15 years, from the feast of St. Michael, and after the coming of the king into England, when he sent the abbots and Earls through all England to enquire into the actions of the sheriffs and provosts, and the other mediety, together with the advowson, to the priory for ever.

At the Dissolution, King Henry VIII. December 22, in his 29th year, granted it to Thomas Duke of Norfolk. Hugh de Gurnay of Letton, granted them a tenement, &c. sans date.

Under the invasions of Hermerus de Ferrarijs we find that he had seized on 21 acres of land, which 2 freemen held in the time of the Confessor, and were under protection only, at that time, and one freeman now possessed it under Hermerus, with 4 acres of meadow, valued at 3s. 4d. (fn. 3)

This came to the Lords Bardolf, and in the 3d of Henry IV. Robert Read, and his parceners, held here, in Shipdam, Yaxham, &c. lands, sometime William Atte Rodes, by the 5th part of a fee, of the honour of Wirmegey; and Robert Fishpoole held it ao. 5th of Henry VI.

Will. de Scohies had 27 acres, and an acre and an half of meadow, of which a freeman was deprived; held then by a borderer, with half a carucate, valued at 23d. (fn. 4)

The tenths were 3l. 10s. Deducted 12s.

The Church is a rectory, dedicated to All-Saints.—The ancient valor was 16 marks, paid Peter-pence, 12d. and the priory of Lewes had a portion of tithe valued at 20s. per ann. The present valor is 7l. 13s. 8d.

Walter le Vache, rector, set a fold on the land of his church, in the 9th of Edward I. but it was not allowed.


In 1308, Mr. Adam de Skerning, rector, by papal provision.

Mr. Thomas de Honing, rector.

1345, Alexander de Berney, presented by John Earl Warren.

1353, John de Wendlyngburgh, by the prior of Lewes.

1356, Thomas de Reynham, by the prior, &c.

1361, Reginald de Baxter, by the Pope, apostolicus.

1375, John Gardiner.

1419, John Hokham, LL. D. by the prior, &c.

1423, William Ilkyn. Ditto.

1447, John Cappe. Ditto.

1490, Henry Holman. Ditto.

1513, John Hagethorp. Ditto.

In the 38th of Henry VIII. June 26, this church was consolidated to that of Cranworth, and the same rectors, to which I refer the reader.

Here were the guilds of St. Mary and St. Thomas.


  • 1. T're. Will. de Warenna—In Lettuna ix libi. ho'es T. R. E. p. dim. car. t're. et ii bord. et xiii ac. p'ti. silva de viii porc. semp. iii car. tc. val. x sol. mo. xx sol i ecclia xii ac. ht. vi qr. in long. et v in lato, et xv den. de gelto.
  • 2. Reg. Lewes in Bibl. Cotton.
  • 3. Invasiones Hermeri de Ferrarijs— In Letuna ii libi. ho's comd. tantu' xxi ac. t'rc. T.R.E. mo. tenet i lib. ho. et iiii ac. p'ti. silv. iiii por. val. iii sol. et iiiid.
  • 4. Terra Willi. de Scohies—In Letteuna i lib. ho. xxvii ac. et i ac. et dim. p'ti. et i bor. et dim. car. et val. xxxiid.